Tag Archives: Irene Pak

Purple flowers, guest collection #11

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Perhaps blue and purple would be better;
posted by Irene Pak
26 May 2015
reposted with permission.

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Reflections Along the Journey: Theological Narratives of Korean American Clergywomen

Grace Ji-Sun Kim and a number of my friends have an exciting project in the works. You can help support this book!

Grace Ji-Sun Kim

book_imageWe are doing a Pubslush Campaign to raise funds to help publish a new book, Reflections Along the Journey: Theological Narratives of Korean American Clergywomen
(Judson Press).

Please help spread the word and please support our publication.  Please go to the original site to donate.  Thank you!!

 

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Hug longer

Yesterday the community gathered to celebrate the life of the Rev. Bert Tom. A number of my friends attended. Being on the opposite coast, I did not. 

Bert TomI knew Bert. My friends knew him better. But our paths crossed from time to time.

At the time of Bert’s death, my friend Laura Mariko Cheifetz wrote about Bert and Satoru Nishita, her grandfather who died at about the same time. Her reflections led me to ponder what I had learned from my mentors and family members.

My friend, and another person mentored by Bert, Irene Pak (she blogs at Abiding in Hope) attended the celebration of Bert’s life. She reflects on the celebration in a post from today. It is a warm, touching reflection about what Bert meant to her and to so many. 

Irene frames her thoughts around her last meeting with Bert. A sentence near the end jumped out at me:

I wish I would have known that was going to be the last time I saw you–I probably would have hugged you longer.

Of course we rarely know when the last time we see anyone else will be. I have known with certainty on a few occasions. Sometimes I have had a pretty good idea because of the health of the other person. But over the past week, I have recalled  how fragile life is and how quickly it can end – by illness or by accident or by factors unseen. Quickly let me add that no one died. But events of the week reinforced that lesson.

Not knowing makes Irene’s invitation and challenge more poignant and profound. It also makes it more relevant in every relationship. In response to Irene, it seems that we would do well to ponder if, at all times and all places, we should:

  • hug our family, friends, and mentors longer (or at all in the case of any non-huggers out there – not sure who that might be)’
  • enjoy our family, friends, and mentors  more fully;
  • listen to our family, friends, and mentors more carefully;
  • tell our family, friends, and mentors what they mean to us more regularly; and
  • make time for family, friends, and mentors more often.

Will I?

See you along the Trail.

The photo is shared with permission from Abiding in Hope by Irene Pak.

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Friendship

The picture is from a couple of years back. I could say it is a bit old, but I realize that would mean that I am a bit older.

I believe this picture was taken by Tiffany Gonzales at a party at her house. Football might have been involved.

What is most important at this moment – is that friendship is definitely involved.

My friend Irene recently endured a very hateful incident. She has had the grace and courage and faith and hope and trust to share her pain and process her pain publicly on Facebook.

A number of her friends have responded with statements of support, long-distance hugs, and prayers. Tonight I decided that, in addition to my words, I would post this picture of Irene and me.

I am honored and grateful to be her friend. I give thanks for Irene and for all who share this journey with me.

See you along the Trail.

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