A pastor on the China-North Korea border shared his faith with at least 1,000 North Koreans in the Hermit Kingdom before he was assassinated in 2016, a defector claims.
Rev. Han Chung-Ryeol, a Chinese pastor of Korean descent, who ministered on the border town of Changbai since the early 1990s, was reportedly on Pyongyang’s most-wanted list as early as 2003 for his faith-based charitable work.
Han fed and sheltered thousands of North Koreans over the years — many of whom had fled the famine-stricken country in search of food and jobs. One of them, Sang-chul, shared his story in a short documentary from The Voice of the Martyrs, as a way to encourage believers around the world to participate in the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church on Sunday, Nov. 3.
“In primary school, we were taught that all missionaries were terrorists,” Sang-chul shares in the video through a translator. “They told us that a missionary will be nice to you at first, but when they get you into their homes, then they will kill you and eat your liver.”
The North Korean said he didn’t have work or food in his village so he snuck across the mountain border into China, picking mushrooms along the way in hopes of selling them in a market. He ran into Han, who offered to sell them and give him the money. Sang-chul knew something was different when the pastor didn’t cheat him out of any money, but he wondered why a Chinese citizen would help him, knowing the danger.
“It is because I am a Christian,” Han reportedly said, causing the North Korean to be fearful of him.
And then one day Han told him: “God is real. There is hope for every person,” but he wondered why he would say “Hananim,” the word for God.
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SOURCE: Fox News, Caleb Parke