Synod Legana 2009
Response by brother B Veenendaal
Response to the address of Prof. Dr. Hae-Moo Yoo of the Presbyterian Churches of Korea
Friday 19th June 2009, Synod Legana, Tasmania, 2009
(Acts Article 55)
Professor Yoo as delegate of the Presbyterian Churches of Korea,
It is my privilege to respond to your address to synod last night. Thankyou very much for being able to accept our invitation extended to your churches. We certainly appreciate the increased contacts that we have been able to experience by the visits in both directions. It is an honour to have you in our midst as a delegate of our sister churches in Korea.
Last night you spoke of the unity of our Lord Jesus Christ that we experience, and we experience that not just by correspondence but also now in person. That is a beautiful thing to realise, the unity that our Triune God works, and certainly not something that exists because of you or us, and thankfully so..it is a gift of the Grace of God.
It is our Lord Jesus Christ who is the living water, as you indicated, by which we as trees are planted. And oh, how much in need we are of that living water! We hear from you the struggles that you face among your churches and as churches in this world. There is the intense struggle to stand firm in the truth and in the reformed faith. You have the struggle to maintain that and pass it on to the coming generations. You do that in a world where there is intense pressure against the church and against faithfulness to God's Word. That struggle is also not foreign to us, even though we need to confront that in a different environment from you. Yet the response to that struggle is not different, but rather must be according to God's Word. He is faithful and will not change, and He will show us the way as churches of our Lord Jesus Christ to remain faithful to Him.
We are very thankful that some of the issues within your Theological Seminar and University have been resolved and that peace is returning. May our Heavenly Father continue to bless the efforts to maintain unity and faithfulness, so that the future ministers of God's Word may be instructed and educated with a solid Scriptural foundation to be able to proclaim God's Word in faithfulness and obedience.
We also understand the enormous complexity and oftentimes difficulty in engaging some of the smaller churches around you in this unity that you spoke about. We encourage you to remain faithful, patient and open in your engagements with them, so that the unity of Christ and His church gathering work may grow in Korea and beyond.
We want to continue to maintain our contact with you, as you heard regarding our decision last night, and to do so according to God's Word using the Rules for Relations with Sister Churches. We want to be able to help and assist you where we are able to. At the same time, we realise that we also have much to learn from you. With our bond of 4000 persons across 13 churches and 13 ministers, we cannot even begin to comprehend the size of your bond of churches, over 400 000 members across more than 1600 congregations with approximately 2500 ministers!
You did mention in your address that you are half a world away from us. I would like to give you a different perspective and even challenge you on this. In Perth, we are in a time zone 2 hours earlier than here in Legana. In Korea, you are right in between, 1 hour difference from Perth, and one hour difference from Legana. So instead of being half a world away, you are right in the middle of us! And being able to meet face to face, makes that even closer! So we hope that you feel very much at home with us.
We thankyou for your encouragement to us, also in the matters we deliberate upon at this synod. May the Lord bless you in your stay among us and grant that it be fruitful for you as well as for us. May the Lord also bless the contact that we, as churches, continue to have with each other.
Please pass on our greetings to your churches and deputies, and may our Heavenly Father continue His work in gathering, defending and preserving the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ in Korea as well as in Australia.
We pray, as Paul did in Col 1:9-12,
...that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father...
last updated 23 Jun 2009