In 2014 Joshua Lee contributed this article.
Key Verse: Genesis 12:2 “You will be a blessing.”
Let's begin with an overview of the establishment of the chapters in Southern Ontario. God's work through UBF in Southern Ontario began on December 10, 1986 M. Joshua Lee and M. James Lee were sent to Toronto from Winnipeg UBF for the pioneering of University of Toronto. Soon after that, on Christmas day, their wives M. Sarah Lee and M. Susanna Lee along with four missionary families joined them. Our first message was “You will be a blessing” on Genesis 12: 1-9. Based on this promise of God, we prayed to be a blessing to U of T students. Then in 1987, M. Paul and Pauline Chang came from Winnipeg to Hamilton with four other missionary families to pioneer McMaster University. After that in 1992 M. Charles and Annan Kim, came from Montreal to London as M. Charles was accepted as a graduate student in University of Western Ontario. And in 1993 M. Joshua and Hannah Yoon moved from Montreal to Waterloo for the pioneering work of University of Waterloo. These four chapters set the initial stage of God’s work in Ontario. For about five years, we had Christmas worship services and conferences together about 5 years.
Then in 1999, M. Charles Kim got a job in Toronto and moved to Toronto to begin the pioneering work of Ryerson University, and London UBF was assumed by M. Isaac and Rebekah Sung who had come as coworkers’ family to London UBF in 1996. M. Paul and Joan Lee moved to Toronto from Montreal and joined Toronto UBF, and then were sent out together with M. Andrew and Hannah Han’s family from Toronto to pioneer Seneca College in North York in 2000. M. Paulus and Mercy Cha moved from Montreal to Ottawa and then to Toronto to begin the pioneering work of Humber College in 2001. And in the fall of 2001, Dr. Henry and Esther Kim, who had been serving God’s work in Carbondale, IL for 6 years, came to Toronto as Dr. Henry obtained a professor position in University of Toronto. In 2003 M. John and Lydia Lee were sent from Toronto main chapter to pioneer York University with two other missionary families from Toronto UBF. In this way 6 chapters have been established in GTA (Greater Toronto Area). And from Hamilton, M. James and Grace Oh went to pioneer Guelph University in 2005. So now there are 10 chapters in Southern Ontario.
Now let’s see God’s work in each chapter.
U of T campus pioneering work can be divided into three parts. 1987-1991 was the Period of God’s Initial Encouraging Work. We remember that each Sunday, we stayed at the Bible House after worship and wrote Bible testimonies together based on the Sunday message, eating Big Macs, and returning home only after completing testimony writing. In this period God blessed our struggle and enabled us to have our own 3-night 4-day SBC, raising 7 Canadian student-messengers in 1989. There was the season of Christ, but we could not bear it.
From 1992-2008, for 16 long years God refined us in faith to hold on to his promise, “You will be a blessing,” and helped us to lay the foundation of God’s ministry and each one’s self-supporting mission life. In this period when discipleship ministry shrank to the point that no growing leader attended Friday student leaders’ meeting, we replaced it with missionaries’ Genesis Group Bible Study, instead of despairing and giving up. At the most difficult time we studied the whole book of Genesis, sharing our testimonies and praying together every Friday. Through that, we could hold onto God’s promise all the more, “You will be a blessing.” It was God’s mercy on us that we could not only survive those hardships but also be prepared as Genesis Bible teachers. Also, in 2001, God granted M. Joshua Lee a chance to receive necessary spiritual training in Chicago UBF for one full year under Late Dr. Samuel Lee. Through this training, he was greatly strengthened in spirit and encouraged to newly challenge U of T campus pioneering work. When he came back to his mission field, he came to have a clear direction to devote himself to the ministry of God’s word, studying the words of God and preparing Sunday messages independently. While serving many the students repeatedly coming and going, all coworkers entered into the main stream of Canadian society after finishing colleges and universities, all while bringing up little children. In this period God raised Sara, Rebekah, Paulina and Abraham as 2nd gen missionaries and Jesus’ disciples. They went through faithful spiritual training particularly through Bible testimony writing throughout their Junior and High School days to grow to be gospel coworkers when they would become university students.
In the summer of 2008, we moved our center nearby campus to engage 1:1 ministry positively, and in the winter 2012, God provided us with a spacious place with many 1:1 rooms in the same building. From then on, God has brought the season of Christ anew among us through rebounding 1:1 Bible studies and Discipleship Ministry. God sent 36 students to have 2012 Christmas worship service together at the new Centre. God helped us to have 30 1:1s, which had been our 1:1 goal for more than 25 years. Now we have around 40 1:1 Bible studies, along with several student leaders serving 1:1 Bible students. Now, 5 missionary families -James & Susanna Lee (Rebekah 1989, Abraham 1994), Peter & Mary Moon (Christopher 2000, Paul 2004), David & Esther Kim (Samuel 2005, Clara 2009, Grace 2011), Moses & Hannah Jung (Daniela 2012, Eunice 2013), and Joshua & Sarah Lee (Sara 1989, Paulina 1992)- form a strong vessel of the Holy Spirit. In this vessel God has been growing Jemmie Hwang as a disciple and a competent 1:1 Bible teacher. She prays for God’s blessing of a mission family in 2014. Thank God that Sara received internship training in Chicago for one year and has grown as a 1:1 Bible teacher and shepherdess. Through 2011 New Year Conference, God granted us his vision and a decade-prayer topic to raise 12 shepherds’ families by 2020 which will be blessings to U of T students, to the City of Toronto, to our nation Canada and to the whole world. And we keep praying that each worship be a Spirit-filled worship service. In 2014, our key verse is John 21:15, “Love Jesus; feed his sheep.” We pray that our focus should always be to respond to Jesus' love question and command: to check whether we love Jesus and do all things out of love for Jesus and particularly feed his sheep because of love of Jesus. As we love Jesus and feed his sheep, God may enable us to have an average of 50 1:1 and 40 SWA.
Ryerson UBF began in December in 1999, when missionary Charles and Anna Kim with their three children, Charles Jr., Rebecca, and Joshua, moved to Toronto from London, Ontario. Ryerson University is located in downtown Toronto and has a student population of about 28,000. At the initial stage of pioneering work of Ryerson chapter, M. Charles suffered a stroke that caused him to be hospitalized for three weeks and undergo two and half months of rehabilitation. By God’s grace, M. Charles is now fully recovered and able to work and serve ministry. That was also the victory of faith in Ryerson pioneering work. Over the next several years, five missionary families from Korea joined in Ryerson UBF: M. Andrew & Sarah Lee (with their children Noah, Jennifer, and Emily), M. Abraham & Hannah Shin (with their son Edward), Steve & Susie Kang (with their children Joseph and John), Isaiah & Maria Seo (with their children Anna, Caleb, and David), and Joseph & Priscilla Chon (with their children Joseph Jr. and Hajun). Missionaries settled down in the mission land as lay people in fields of accounting, banking, college administration, pharmacy, nursing, and start-up businesses. Among second gens, four are in university, four in high school, one in junior high, and three in CBF. From fall semester in 2009, they began to pray for campuses, University of Toronto in Mississauga (UTM), George Brown College, and OCAD University. God sent them disciple candidates: Preston, Jeffrey, Chares Jr., and Grace. From March in 2013 they resumed disciples meeting on Fridays. They share their testimonies and study the word of God. They pray for 35 Sunday worship service attendants and 40 weekly one to one Bible studies.
North York UBF ministry began in August 2000, serving Seneca community college. Families of M. Andrew + Hannah Han and M. Paul + Joan Lee were sent out to serve the pioneering work. Later M. Isaac and Rebekah Kim’s family joined the ministry being sent from Kwangju Center via Toronto UBF. God then sent young students from Korea to study English and later they made their personal decisions to live as missionaries. God blessed their decisions and established 5 young missionary house churches. In this way God gathered 8 missionary families and helped them to work together to serve the work of God. Then God sent many students to their one to one studies. Among them Amanda Vance and Louis Perdomo kept their faith and became remnants of God. Since August 2005, God began his pioneering work in UTSC campus. M. Isaac + Rebekah Kim, M. Moses’ + Deborah Noh and M. Joseph + Esther Song have been working together as a UTSC Team, while five other families (M. Andrew + Hannah Han, M. Elijah +Sarah Kim, David + Mary Jung and Paul +Joan Lee) have served a Seneca team continually. God provided one more Bible house near UTSC campus, while keeping the Seneca Bible House near Seneca college. In 2011, God blessed Paul Lee Jr. and M. Lydia Shin and established a house church, the first Canadian second gen’s marriage. They are growing as Bible teachers and becoming a blessing to the ministry. God blessed them with a baby girl Arielle in January. Currently, about 30 people attend Sunday worship services. There are also 18 second gens. North York UBF’s prayer topics are: first, to have a strong spiritual vessel in Jesus’ love; second, to raise 12 Canadian disciples families; third, to become a missionary sending ministry.
St. George UBF started in 2001 with Dr. Henry and Esther Kim when Dr. Henry obtained a
professor position at the University of Toronto. In 2002, David and Langue Chung and Jeremiah and Esther Lee joined the ministry. Jeremiah Lee came to Toronto as Henry Kim’s postdoc. In 2005, Jeremiah Lee obtained a tenure-track position at the University of Connecticut, and his family went out to pioneer the campus. Langue Chung opened a dog-grooming business in Toronto. In 2007, Peter and Rebecca Cho came to Toronto as Peter became a Ph.D. student of Dr. Henry. Grace Park came to Toronto from Chicago to learn dog-grooming skills from Langue Chung. She married Sh. Don Lipsey from Baltimore II chapter on June 30, 2009. They sent her out to be a blessing in Baltimore. Moses and Grace Kang came from Chicago as Grace obtained a job as a tax attorney in Toronto. Through their co-working, God has raised five shepherds. They had a shepherd declaration ceremony on September 25, 2011 to appoint Paw Wah, Sheila Htoo, Samuel Mukwedeya, Luke West and Wah Paw as shepherds for God’s flock at the University of Toronto, and they began to serve as group Bible study leaders every Sunday and as one-to-one Bible teachers. In 2012, they celebrated the twin weddings of Paw Wah and Joshua Columbus, and Wah Paw and Jacob Jang, who was from Kwanak I chapter in Korea. In 2010, they moved to a spacious Bible centre across from the campus, which can hold up to 50 people. They prayed that by the end of 5 year lease, they may increase to 40 Sunday worship service attendants. By the end of 2011, they had an average 32 Sunday worship service attendants and 23 1 to 1 Bible studies a week. They pray that God may use St. George UBF to proclaim the gospel so that many students may come and meet the Savior, Jesus Christ, and grow as disciples of Jesus. They also pray that St. George UBF may be a loving community where our coworkers love one another and grow together in the love of Jesus Christ, so that God’s glory may be revealed to the whole world.
Humber UBF started in 2001 when M. Paulus and Mercy Cha came to Toronto after serving God’s work in Montreal for 10 years. In their mid-40’s they started a new pioneering work and it was not an easy job. Planting the seed of the gospel among the students in a new campus looked too hard. Many times they went to campus to preach but ended up drinking coffee out of despair, making an excuse that they were doing Jericho strategy. But God who does his work accepted all of these. God started to bless Humber UBF in many ways. First, God sent missionaries families to form a vessel of prayer and coworking. Their women coworkers went campus every day from morning till evening and served fishing ministry faithfully. Then God began to send students, one by one, two by two. One student came to Sunday worship service after more than 2 years of pioneering work. Students came one after another. Although many came and were gone, God is growing several faithful Bible students in the word of God and through their sincere struggle with God’s word. God blessed them to have disciples’ team meeting, the Abraham team (male students) and the Mustard Seed team (female students). Through the team meetings, the students share their testimonies and have fellowship among themselves. God especially blessed the Abraham team to start disciples’ house and live a life of faith together, learning practical faith, and engaging in fishing and 1:1 Bible study with their friends. The girl students in the Mustard Seed team are struggling to live by faith. As 2nd gens their struggle is different from that of other students, but each one is growing in faith. They also pray for CBF kids to grow in personal faith and be disciples of Jesus. They thank God for each of the 2nd gens who support the work of God in various ways.
God also blessed each family to be self-supporting missionaries and serve the work of God. They pray to raise up one Abraham and one Sarah of faith through 40 1:1 and 30 Sunday worshippers and to raise up 12 disciples of Jesus and 12 Marys from Humber and UTM campus.
They really thank God for prayer supports of God’s servants around the world for M. Timothy Park, and earnestly request for prayer support for him. M. Timothy Park’s leukemia was healed after 21/2 years of chemotherapy, and could go back to his full-time work, but recently his leukemia recurred and he is now admitted for chemotherapy and after that, bone-marrow transplant. He really needs God’s healing grace and mercy. Please continue to pray for him to be free from any infections and go through his chemo treatment well. May God give him healing mercy on him and help his family to be strong in faith.
York UBF ministry began Nov. 2003. Missionaries Lydia and John Lee, Samuel and Grace Yoon, and Stephen and Petrah Chung were sent from Toronto UBF to pioneer York University. In 2009 Samuel Yoon’s family was relocated to Ottawa for a Job placement and to pioneer Rideau UBF. M. Daniel and Ruth Jung family from Han Yang UBF joined York UBF. God raised Dr. Guodong Fu as faithful co-worker. In 2010 Stephen Chung’s family began to pioneer Sheridan College in Oakville, but left the ministry the following year. York UBF gave their hearts and prayers to raise student bible teachers. God raised student leaders John Lee, Joan Lee, Natan Bekit and Aaron Yu as committed co-workers and bible teachers. Currently M. John and Lydia Lee and M. Daniel and Ruth Jung, John Lee Jr. Joan Lee and Peter Lee, Dr. Guodong Fu and Natan Bekit and Aaron Yu are co-working together in the York university mission work. York UBF is praying to raise 12 bible teachers.
2013 Presently, 5 missionary families are serving McMaster University and Mohawk college. We have around 20-25 attendants on Sunday worship service and 10-15 weekly one to one Bible studies. Right now, several students are growing in the word of truth and our second gens are growing in faith to be new generation leaders for the future gospel ministry. In the early stage of pioneering ministry all missionaries worked at the factories as a sewing machine operator or presser or janitor. However, we went out fishing every day and met at 5:00 a.m. for daily bread and prayer. God used this kind of challenges to lay a foundation of faith in Canada and taught us to live by the absolute gospel faith. God blessed us to take care of many students. When our missionaries began to attend school in order to lay a foundation for self-supporting ministry while raising children, we could not devote ourselves to the gospel ministry for a while. However, God helped us to be stable as self-supporting missionaries and enabled us to better understand Canadian people and society so that we can be better Bible teachers for campus students. When ministry confronted division among us, we experienced pain and discouragement. But God enabled us to gather our strength in him so that we may faithfully serve campus mission with a never-giving-up spirit. God sent new co-workers and helped us to form a new vessel of prayer in and among us. Presently, five missionary families are working together to form a Christian community of faith, hope, love and mission and to advance the gospel of Jesus among young people on campus together with growing second gens and several Bible students. Since 2013 fall, God is send many new students to study the word of God when one missionary, inspired by John Baik went out to campus every day, using his lunch time. We pray to establish a fruitful student ministry and positively participate in world mission with a vision for Canada to be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.
“We love because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19)
Waterloo UBF's vision is to be a Christ-centred, Spirit-filled community of people who, fueled by God’s love for us, love God, each other and the world around us with all we are. We do church, Friday “Ruach” meetings, and various prayer and Bible-study meetings throughout the week. In past years we met in the basements of a few different townhouse units, then in the basement of a residential home, and since January 2012 have been meeting in a rented space behind a nightclub in uptown Waterloo. We are trying to be more supportive of our non-student members (children, graduates, workers, etc.) while retaining a focus on disciple-making among students from the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University. Vibrant young leaders serve on worship, tech, welcoming, service, children’s ministry, and prayer teams. We support and are affiliated with the on-campus club called Seeds of Waterloo (SOW), which is run by undergraduate students who graciously communicate with and receive prayer and occasional counsel from us. Many of the members of SOW also attend meetings of the Waterloo UBF church. We want to continue to pray for and bless those who have gone out from Waterloo to follow the Lord in other places, including Ray Grondin who went to Japan as a missionary, and Kimberly Schwindt who is serving as a missionary in Mongolia. Since 2008, through the influence of other Christian ministries, God has shifted our paradigm from being workers for God to being lovers of God. In August of 2012 the Holy Spirit gave us a further breakthrough of openness and healing at our leaders’ retreat. We want more of the Father’s love, and we want to live from the Father’s love. We want to experience and help our members to experience healing and deliverance so that we may walk in the fullness of our identity as sons and daughters of our Father God. For the past 20 years Joshua and Hannah Yoon served as the chapter director family, and the Lord blessed them and grew the fruit of their labour of love into a small but thriving church with a current average Sunday attendance of about 45 people. After taking a one-year sabbatical, they followed God's new work in their lives, pursuing a greater heart connection with the Father, while continuing to sustain the ministry through their prayer, presence and personal connections with various members. As of January 2014 they turned over the lead pastor role to Andy and Jennifer Stumpf, who are blessed to be supported by a loving and faithful Core leadership team along with the Board which is composed of Joshua, Steve and Andy, along with other leaders.
London Canada UBF was pioneered by M. Charles & Anna Kim in 1994. In 1996, M. Isaac & Rebecca Sung, along with their two daughters, joined in this ministry. In 1999, M. Charles Kim's family moved to Toronto to pioneer Ryerson University and M. Isaac's family alone began to serve this pioneering work. Now, M. Caleb Park's family and M. John Kang's family co-work and serve Western University (30,000 students) and Fanshawe college (20,000 students). In 2005, M. Ray and Tsuakasa Grondin built a house church and in 2009, after receiving a missionary training in Chicago, they were sent to Oita Japan as a missionary family with two sons. In February 2012, a Bible house was purchased near the University. In August 2012, Theresa Sung was sent out as a student missionary in Kampala, Uganda with the vision of becoming a medical missionary. Now, Lydia Kim, James Oh, Becky Kim, Julie, Wen, and Syntyche among students are attending in the worship service and growing. Prayer topics are: (1) to serve 25 one-to-one and disciple-raising ministry (2) to raise one Abraham of faith (3) to be new Bible house as a powerful prayer house (4) the Spirit-filled worship service with powerful and heart-moving message each week.
Guelph UBF started since Sept 2, 2005, by M. James and Grace Oh’s family. In 1981, M. Grace came to Winnipeg, Canada, with the original intent of becoming a sewing machine operator for better life. But God had another plan for her. After 6 years of basic furnace-like spiritual training, she was sent to Hamilton in 1986 as one of the McMaster University pioneering team. The next year, her husband James joined Hamilton UBF. God blessed them with four children (two sons and two daughters) . God also blessed both of them to work as RN in the hospital. After 19 years of working together in Hamilton, God sent Oh family to Guelph to serve University of Guelph. Many bible students come and were gone for the last 8 years. However, God raised 2nd gens as coworkers of Christ. May God continue to grant them never giving-up spirit and raise up many young people from U of Guelph.
Thank God for the gospel work he has done in Southern Ontario for the last 27 years. Thank God for sending gospel workers to the campuses in Ontario. Now there are 75 missionaries (37 families and 1 single) and 8 shepherds (in 4 shepherd families) and 93 new gens (92 2nd gen and 1 3rd gen). And there are around 10 growing disciples. I can say that there are 186 spiritual leaders now in Ontario. May God equip all of them with the word of God in the power of the Spirit to be excellent Bible teachers and powerful gospel workers so that God’s blessing in Jesus Christ may spread to many young people in campuses in Ontario according to God’s promise and dedicated disciples of Jesus be raised up in the hope that Canada be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.