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21

A Reflection from Mother Kim

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Summer 2015

Two years ago I wrote my first Message to the Cathedral Church of the Nativity and I provided some simple facts about myself, my call and my family. Today as I prepare to leave this place- I figured it might be fitting to reflect briefly on how much God has changed my life in the past 24 months by providing the “new” FAQs.

In 2012 the question was “What should we call you”?

I think we finally figured that one out, it certainly got easier when I became a Canon in January of 2015. Canon Mo Kim has become the moniker I go by most often, but my newest moniker is “M-Audrey”, but Mother Kim, or Kim also suffice.

How old are you?

I am now 34 years old (and feeling every bit of it after the week at Nativity Youth Camp in June!)

Are you married?

Yes Andrew and I are still married. We are both still called to the ordained ministry of the priesthood and in the past two years we have grown in faith as a clergy couple. We are also both now called to the blessed ministry of parenthood and in the past 18 months have been on an amazing journey of beginning to raise Audrey.

Do you have any children?

Andrew and I welcomed Audrey into our family in January of 2014 and we haven’t looked back since, we love her more every day and can’t imagine our lives with out her. She loves her family at the Cathedral and at Saint Margaret’s and is sad to be leaving the Diocese of Bethlehem, but is looking forward to her new home(s) in Richmond VA.

We also still have our dog Indiana, who was our first “kid”. He is now 6 years old and not quite a puppy any more, but he does love having Audrey around to play with.

In 2012 “Where are you from” I think the more appropriate question now is, “Where are you going”?

I have been called to the Diocese of Virginia. I will be serving at Grace and Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Richmond as their Associate for Mission, Campus Ministry and Pastoral Care. My new role includes leading mission trips to Belize twice a year, coordinating a prescription assistance program, continuing an established soup kitchen ministry, acting as the campus minister for students at Virginia Commonwealth University, and all the responsibilities normally assigned to priests- preaching, presiding, baptizing, marrying, visiting the sick, etc.
In 2012 the question was “When did you hear your call” today it is “Why did you answer this new call”?

The answer to this is two-fold:

In January of 2015 when Andrew’s position at the Diocese came to an end the two of us entered into a time of discernment and we began to wonder if God might be calling us to a new place and ministry. It is not a decision we came to lightly. We both come from Berks County and our families are all based in Southeastern PA. Leaving the Diocese of Bethlehem is leaving home on many levels and it is not easy. However, we have discerned a vocation which compels us to follow God’s call wherever it may lead. At this time the Holy Spirit has lead us to Richmond. Andrew continues to discern what his call may be in Virginia, however there are many more opportunities in Virginia which is a much larger diocese. We continue to pray that he will receive a call soon.

This position in particular is very exciting for me as a priest and pastor. I have always felt called to work with Young Adults, in part it was my motivation for going to Seminary. I believe that the Episcopal Church has done an excellent job in developing Youth programs and formation opportunities, in particular the Journey to Adulthood model. However, there is a lack of funding, opportunities and leadership around Young Adult Ministries. So I jumped at the chance to work directly with college aged students and “get my hands” dirty again in international and domestic missionary work. These were some of the aspects of ministry that I loved about working as the Diocesan Youth Missioner. So I jumped at the opportunity to do more of this kind of work day in and day out. It is a great opportunity to do the work which I feel God has called me to do. For this I am grateful.
I will of course miss you all. You have become family to me. I have been so blessed to become Mother and Momma here at the Cathedral. Thank you for the chance to serve here learning, growing and being the person whom God has called me to be.

Nativity Youth Camp 2015 – Here I am Lord.

This year’s camp was so special. I can’t even begin to explain the joy I felt when I listened to our children and youth responding to the call which God placed upon their hearts.

This year’s theme was “Here I am Lord” and we invited the campers and counselors on the first day of camp to answer a 50 question spiritual gifts inventory. We compiled the results and formed 5 “similarly inclined” groups of campers and counselors and invited them to engage in a conversation about mission and ministry and call that we hope will be on going throughout the coming year. The 5 groups that were formed we named: Abraham, Samuel, David, Mary (Mother of God), and Martha based on similarities each of these groups shared with those individuals who were called by name by God to serve. Here is a basic summary of what each of the groups discerned to be their call to mission/ministry in the coming year. Come and hear more about their calling on Sunday September 13 during the Formation Hour.

• Abraham has been called to support Episcopal Relief and Development. They plan on organizing a Kiffle Sale near the Christmas Holidays and also a spring sale of some variety. Contact Jana Boksan – spokes person for this group if you have questions.

David has been called to respond to the issue of homelessness in teens who are LGBTQIA+. They hope to host a 5K to support the Ali Forney Center in Manhattan which is a non-profit organization which helps to shelter youth who identify as LGBTQIA+ in New York City over 40% of which are in this minority group. Additionally members of this group would like to learn more about what is happening in our community and will be reaching out to other Episcopal Churches and the Episcopal Integrity Ministry to find out what they can do to support Gay, Lesbian and Transgender Youth in the Lehigh Valley, the Diocese of Bethlehem and the Episcopal Church. Contact Eliana Velez if you have questions for this group.

Martha has been called to respond to homelessness and provide hospitality. This group consisted of a number of campers and counselors who were not directly tied to the cathedral or who are going to college soon so their approach to this call to ministry is a bit outside of the box. They are setting up a tumblr account and inviting each member of the group to post once a month for the next 12 months about their experience at a local shelter. There are plans to serve at a shelter in Reading, Omaha, Wilkes Barre and Bethlehem currently. They would also like to invite others to post on their blog. Contact Paul Fox if you have questions for this group.

Mary (the Mother of God) has been called to help revive the Thanksgiving Basket Ministry and continue to collect food for the New Bethany Food Pantry. Additionally members of this group are hoping to engage in individual projects which will help raise awareness of hunger and homelessness. Keep your eyes and ears open to respond to the call that Mary has heard in the coming months. Contact Sophie Kitch Peck if you have questions for this group.

Samuel has been called to raise funds for scholarships for children in South Sudan, specifically for our brothers and sisters in the Diocese of Kajo Keji. They have already volunteered to host Lemonade and Ice Tea with Bake sales after the 10 am service for July and August and will have more opportunities to support this mission in coming months. Contact Bella Pompa if you have questions about this group.

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