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Friendship rose

1994 Open Letter From James Kim

This letter, which was originally written in Korean by M. James K. (Houston, formerly Toledo) to the UBF directors in Korea and Chicago in 1994, was translated by M. Jacob C. and then revised by M. Paul S. This is one of the important documents to review about the history of the second reform movement in the UBF-USA.

February 28, 1994

“Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” (Eph 4:15-16)

Dear precious servant of the Lord:

First of all, I pay my respects from my deep heart to the shepherds and the missionaries who are devoting their lives to the gospel work because of their love toward the Lord all over the world. Even though I spent almost 20 years as a gospel co-worker in UBF, many don’t know me personally. And many don’t know the reason why I am writing this letter. So, I simply introduce to you the circumstances for sending this letter.

I. The Background of the Highlights

In 1972, I started to study the Bible when I was a sophomore in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences of SNU [Seoul National University]. Here, I received Jesus as my Savior and accepted God’s calling. In Korea, I was an intern shepherd of Kwan Ak center after my graduation. In May 1977, I came to USA as a missionary and served in gospel work in Toledo, Ohio, until I came down to Houston to pioneer in 1990. In the early ’70s, my heart was attracted to the pure love of the Word of the truth. That’s why I fully devoted my golden days of life, my 20s and 30s to the Lord through the UBF ministry. But I directly observed and experienced the untruth, the darkness, and the factors of serious spiritual corruption that existed among us, while I was very closely obeying and co-working with M. Samuel Lee of Chicago in USA for the last 13 years. Eventually, I sent a letter to M. Samuel Lee, expressing my earnest outspoken advice.

At the end of 1989, I could not help feeling the sense of crisis when I was praying for and thinking about Toledo UBF, world UBF, and especially UBF-USA. Outwardly, it was a time of boasting of small successes through pioneering the campuses of the USA and West Germany, and sending out missionaries to many countries, including Russia. It seemed to grow outwardly, since 200 Americans attended Sunday Worship Service in Chicago UBF, 120 Americans in Columbus UBF, and 65 Americans in our Toledo UBF. But so many inner problems were already apparent in UBF-USA.

M. Jimmy Rhee, who was one of the board members, and about 20 Chicago missionaries dropped out or were excommunicated. (This is so-called case of Hallelujah Christians.) And M. Augustine Park submitted his resignation as a director of Milwaukee UBF. There were various signs that God’s work was suffering from pernicious evils inwardly, such as the co-working problems with M. Samuel Lee, the misuse of offering, and the contradiction of training. Even some influential American scholars named UBF-USA as heretical in their books.

I sent a letter to M. Samuel Lee in January ’90 and M. Peter Chang [from Columbus] also sent his letter in July ’90. In those letters, we proposed the problems among us to be changed inevitably and asked for his prayer support. Our motive for writing those letters was never personal selfishness or emotion. It was based on the pivotal point between the existence and the destruction: whether now UBF can be based on the Gospel and grow, or be destroyed as a sect. However, these letters made M. Peter Chang and myself to be excluded, condemned and falsely accused so many times for the last four years.

Eventually, at the end of 1993, our names were not printed in the Daily Bread of Korea and USA. In fact, we reached the point of being expelled from UBF. I could not understand these things at all, since I wanted to build a better UBF through proposing the problems that should be absolutely changed in UBF. At first, I wanted to retreat without a word and to live a life serving Jesus quietly, since I did not like causing trouble and meeting with darkness. I dared to take up my pen like this, thinking how many co-workers would be sacrificed in the future and that it was not right to cover the truth and to leave the history distorted, if I went away silently like ex-UBFers in the same boat in the past. Here, I outlined the problems which M. Peter Chang and I proposed. I cordially ask your objective judgment, advice and prayer.

II. The first problem: Only God and Jesus is our Lord
(No honorable man or the servant of the Lord can sit down on His throne.)

In my opinion, there is a problem that shepherds and sheep eventually (at least once someday) face and breed discord in our UBF. That is the problem of M. Samuel Lee of Chicago. He is not only playing the role of mediator between God and us in many aspects, but also sitting down on the throne of God or in many cases on top of that. Of course, the shepherd is the guide of the blind and the teacher who leads and teaches the sheep with the Word of God. He is the spokesman of Jesus. Because of this duty, he needs spiritual authority. But there should be a limit even in this authority. No servant of God can exercise the absolute spiritual authority of Jesus.

The authority of the shepherd is given by Jesus himself, when he serves sheep with sacrifice, devotion, tears and humility. It is corrupted spiritual authority to demand the authority forcefully and enforce his authority by any means. Up to the present, we were taught that the order of the organization could be kept and the efficient work could be carried only when the authority of M. Samuel of Chicago (from now on I will call him Dr. Lee) was established as the highest spiritual leader and then that of the directors. And we believed that firmly. And we put the challenge against the absolute authority of Dr. Lee under the taboo, using the examples of David and Saul [1Sam 24:7]. But the problem is that he will be absolutely corrupted when the man with the nature of corruption exercises the absolute authority. History proves it. And we should learn this inevitable historical fact. Therefore, the principle of “check and balance” comes from the truth of the Bible (Acts 6:1-7; 11:18; 15:1-35).

They have practiced this principle in the progressive orthodox churches, governments and social organizations for 2000 years from the earliest churches to the modern. Now seems to be the time for the examining whether or not the absolute authority of Dr. Lee or the shepherds was higher than that of Jesus and whether or not the most fundamental truth of the Bible were violated because of this.

A. Only the Bible is the absolute truth: No interpretation of the Bible by a certain man or church can be the foundation of the absolute truth.

Dr. Lee is saying that only the Bible is the foundation of the absolute truth in UBF and only we, especially our leaders, are embodying this truth. But, in reality, only Dr. Lee’s interpretation of the Bible, that is, only Dr. Lee’s lecture manuscript, is the basis of our testimony writing. Without applying this principle, there will be subtle pressure and punishment. In USA staff meetings, the best testimonies are (still) those copied from Dr. Lee’s manuscript with some personal applications. Only these kinds of testimonies are highly praised. We are judged as unbiblical men being filled with human and self-centered thoughts, when we write our own testimonies, not copying Dr. Lee’s manuscript after digging out truth from the Word of God and receiving personal grace.

It is useless, even though we ourselves are personally so moved and influenced by the Holy Spirit, and we receive the conviction of our faith. If Dr. Lee pointed out that the testimony was wrong, the testimony writer would regard this as received grace from sinful thoughts. And whether it was right or wrong, we should write the testimonies according to his direction. If it’s not, we will be subtly condemned and judged as disobedient, unbiblical and unspiritual men. Even now, the Chicago missionaries should write their testimonies, copying Dr. Lee’s manuscript exactly and finishing them by praising Dr. Lee. The missionaries who are not following this rule will be gradually branded and reduced to second- or third-rate missionaries.

I made effort to receive the message training of Dr. Lee faithfully, trying to be second to none for about 10 years. At first, it was not bad for growing leaders and shepherds to copy the manuscript, just because of humbleness. But Dr. Lee did not like for us to dig out the well of the Word in our own way. He hated that we learned from other places except from his own manuscript. He regarded those who learned from his manuscript and wrote accordingly for 10 or 20 years as mature servants. If this is the case, we are learning not the truth but the self-righteousness and egotism of one individual. At first, I also went to Chicago and received the training just because of my thankful, respectful and joyful heart. But the point of the training was turning round and round. And it eventually followed that I was paid a high compliment when I copied Dr. Lee’s manuscript very well, and condemned and judged that I did something wrong when I dug out the well of the Word in my own way.

Later, I felt like being paralyzed and suffocated without finding a way out from this situation and a breakthrough. And in every conference, they delivered the same manuscripts of Dr. Lee without even changing the illustrations for about 10 years, changing only the speakers. This kind of conference made the leaders or missionaries have a hard time and carry the burden instead of receiving the Word of God in their heart. And even in world conferences (West Germany, Russia), eventually they deliver the same messages after changing Dr. Lee’s manuscripts a little bit. (Last year, Shepherd Mark Yang received training and rebuke, since he did not copy and delivered the exact message of Dr. Lee at the Russia conference.)

Missionary Peter Chang and I visited Korea UBF in 1992. And the big growth of each center touched us. I could see the vivid work of the Holy Spirit according to the free and independent study and teaching of the Bible under the environment of respecting personality and independence under the leadership of Shepherd John Jun, after Dr. Lee left Korea in 1977. On the contrary, in UBF-USA, the growth is stuck tight and many coworkers dropped out. Dr. Lee is blocking the work of the Holy Spirit, sitting down on the throne of Jesus behind the scenes. And the sad thing is that Korea UBF also is under the authority of Dr. Lee. The realm of world UBF and Korea UBF should unavoidably desert his principle and follow the untruth.

This voice was heard 18 years ago in the ’76 event of the senior shepherds. (At this time he distorted history calling this a work of Satan.) After this event, Dr. Lee pretended to reform for a while but later returned to the old style. He seemed to sense the problems for a moment due to the letters of M. Peter Chang and myself but then went back to his old self. This made me think that basically we need theological establishment about the true view of the Messiah, leadership and the Bible.

There are basically little differences between our present reality and that of the Catholic churches in the Middle Ages. That’s because of the thought that only the interpretation of the church was absolute, and the individual should interpret the Bible based on the interpretation of the church leaders. There are so many unessential spiritual problems. We need to pray a lot in order to solve this basic problem.

B. The Wrong Way of Thinking:
(The Direction and Love of Dr. Lee = The Direction and Love of God)

A few months ago (after the 1993 Christmas worship service), Shepherd Teddy Hembekides, of Oakton College of Chicago, went through same severe trouble with his heart. The reason was that he disobeyed the direction Dr. Lee gave him through M. Jackie to participate in the Christmas party one Monday evening in the Chicago center. In my eyes, Shepherd Teddy could not obey that direction because of his own philosophy of faith. He did not go there because he had the clear value and faith that he needed to take care of his sheep at that time and that was more important than the Christmas party. But the problem is that we should obey the absolute direction of Dr. Lee, giving up everything else, no matter how right we might be. If it’s not, we will become disobedient sinners and rebels, that is, the enemies of all people. This is our reality. You might know very well that Shepherd Teddy suffered insults later and went through the trouble of heart. (Senior shepherds went through similar experiences more than enough.)

This was the same motive with which I came into conflict with Dr. Lee in the early ’90s. After I sent a long outspoken letter to Dr. Lee in January 1990, my heart was filled with the regrettable and sorry feeling because of the sense of Korean morality. (Of course, there is nothing wrong about my suggested issue.) So, I called Dr. Lee, apologized and asked for his forgiveness after sending that letter. Dr. Lee responded that he forgave everything and there was no problem at all. And he suggested that I might have the time to talk with him and discuss necessary matters.

Then he invited me to Chicago. I joyfully accepted his invitation, deeply touched by his broad-mindedness and Christ-like personality. And he encouraged and treated me with very wonderful words while I stayed in Chicago. That moved me deeply and I even shed tears. But one thing was strange to me. It was that he let me stay in a room without a telephone for seven days in Chicago. Later, I called Toledo and found out that every word and action of Dr. Lee was false. In fact, they already expelled me from the directorship in Toledo, while he confined me in Chicago.

In Toledo, he announced through missionaries that my family and I would leave for Minneapolis in Minnesota to pioneer, since I committed terrible sins before God. (Yet, in front of me, he was totally double-tongued, and promised me that he would do his best to help me to go with American shepherd families.) I was shocked not because of the news that I was under punishment or would go into exile, but because how the servant of God could appeal to Machiavellian diplomacy like this. But I prayed again and concluded that the position, accumulated reputation and honor of Dr. Lee were significant. And the sheep of Toledo were more important. I decided that it’s o.k. to be misunderstood in order to protect the sheep. And I left a memo in Chicago and returned to Toledo. I planned that our family would leave for Minnesota quietly after talking with my co-worker. It was my candid feelings that I did not want to let our sheep and co-workers be drawn into the vortex because of my conflicts with Dr. Lee. However, the problem occurred after that.

After I came back to Toledo, through sending three Toledo missionaries to my home, Dr. Lee threatened me with this message: “It is to accept God’s love for M. James K. to return to Chicago and receive the training. And to refuse this direction is to refuse God’s love. In that case, you will be a Gentile of UBF, that is, you will be expelled from UBF.” I explained all the circumstances to these missionaries. But it was useless because they set their heart with the fixed ideas after they received the direction of Dr. Lee. But as for me, I was shocked once again that the equation, namely Dr. Lee’s love = God’s love and Dr. Lee’s direction = God’s direction was so deeply planted in the heart of these missionaries.

In my opinion, it was obvious that since I knew much about his darkness and wrote this in my letter Dr. Lee wanted me to return to Chicago so that he could confine me in Chicago and try to wheedle in order to forbid me to mention any of this. But I was greatly disillusioned about naming this as God’s love and God’s training. Simultaneously, the flames of wrath started to shoot up against his falsehood and hypocrisy. And I was captivated that Dr. Lee was sitting down on the throne of Jesus in our heart and that the bigger problem was that following him became an unwritten law among us not limited to some special cases. Therefore, I reached the conclusion that it was absolutely necessary to have the true faith and an individual and personal relationship with God. But the struggle of M. Peter Chang and I eventually became diluted with the word called the work of Satan. It became like throwing eggs toward a rock because of Dr. Lee’s manipulation of all the public opinions and all the power of UBF.

Even though I gave the example of Teddy, the deeper faith problem lies in that this became an unwritten law among us, not just applying to some particular people. And so many shepherds and co-workers who are closely working with Dr. Lee overstrain their nerves because of this and are hurt and have suffered in their heart in addition to carrying the big burden of Gospel work. God’s direction should be sought for through prayer in the Holy Spirit. And we should not be confused between man’s false love and God’s love.

C. God’s work should be done not by the wisdom, means, methods or manipulation of the human being but by the touch and influence of the Holy Spirit.

Whenever we study the Gospel, we are deeply moved by Jesus, since he believed in the work of the Holy Spirit absolutely and he himself obeyed to the work of the Holy Spirit thoroughly. The method of Jesus’ ministry is well expressed in John 6:44a: “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him.” But in UBF-USA, “We should be indiscreet employing means in order to achieve the good purpose of the Gospel” became the motto according to Dr. Lee’s teaching. Dr. Lee’s teaching, like fraudulent tricks, forced controls, artificial tactics, manipulation and etc. has been incorporated into God’s work. Other things include misguided training, forced marriage, inflating Bible study numbers and Sunday worship service attendants. And that gives rise to so many pernicious evils and troubles. In his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught that if the purpose was good, the means also should follow high moral principles. Here are some examples:

(1) Telling lies and fabrications:

In UBF, Dr. Lee’s telling lies is regarded as wisdom. In my ’90s event, through the UBF official document, Dr Lee promised to send five American families to me until the ’90 summer conference. Since I could not believe his words at all, all the board members signed the document with the witness of M. Peter Chang. But he again broke his promise. In reality, he discouraged those who were willing to come to me. There are countless examples of lies like this. The relationship of trust and love among us was replaced with the unnatural relationship of doubt.

(2) Forced control:

In order to control the shepherd family, Dr. Lee controls the sister (wife) first and then controls the husband through the wife. This became a kind of ministry method. Dr. Lee loves very much the sisters who obey him and highly praises them. But those sisters, who are living their own life by their own faith and have thoughts in conflict with Dr. Lee are neglected and despised under the name of training. And he gives the training until their spirits are crushed. M. Esther Jung, of Winnipeg in Canada, was treated as a hero and was highly praised when she listened to him well. But she suffered a lot of trials and insults after she opposed the artificial method of ministry that Dr. Lee pushed on missionaries by force.

Eventually, he even persuaded M. David Jung, her husband, to divorce her. Later, they moved to Vancouver in Canada as if they went into exile. There this family was totally ruined. M. David Jung was as good as the living dead. M. Esther Jung had a nervous breakdown. Now I can see God is restoring this family little by little and healing lots of scars received from the contradiction of Dr. Lee and UBF organization. M. Gus Park, of Austin, is still having severe troubles. M. Deli Chung, of Pittsburgh, (the wife of M. Peter Chung) has a strong personality. She was not obedient to Dr. Lee. That’s why he wanted to crush the spirit of this chaste sister missionary, so that he would say she fell in love with a Korean missionary or a handsome American shepherd in vain. (This family suffered hardships because of this and M. Deli Chung has not recovered totally from that scar.)

(3) The basic problem of Christian ethics:

Dr. Lee ordered an abortion without hesitating when a sister disobeyed him. Ex-missionary of Chicago Rebecca Yoon suffered from guilt for a long time because of this. M. Jimmy Rhee was eventually expelled from Chicago UBF since he wanted to correct this problem and challenged Dr. Lee. (But it was distorted that M. Jimmy Rhee went to a tongue-speaking church since his faith had something wrong with it and he had problems with English and his son.) UBF-USA would end if the U.S. press learned about these immoral practices.

(4) Pernicious evils of artificial training:

The training of shepherds should be based on the work of the Holy Spirit in order to help them. But this training makes the relationship worse instead of better due to the scars and unbelief. In Hebrews chapter 12, the necessity of training is written. And I believe that all the disciples of Jesus should receive God’s training. But the real trainer is God and the trainee willingly obeys God by the touch and influence of the Holy Spirit. But we will produce pernicious evils and scars through training if we use means like fear against punishment, psychological pressure, and taking advantage of the competitive spirit. And the human artificial training makes the trainee lose his self-regulation and the ability of personal thoughts.

Eventually, through this kind of training, we cannot raise up men of God but paralytics who just try to read the shepherd’s mind and are waiting for the shepherd’s direction. This kind of artificial training, as it were, may gain one (ultimately, this makes the condition of being loyal to the man and organization) while losing 10. M. Gus Park received this kind of training. This made him tired, so that he submitted his resignation as a shepherd. (But these kinds of co-workers are condemned as corrupted angels who forsook their mission and went back to the world because of their laziness and unsolved problems in their faith.)

(5) The bait for heightening loyalty:

One of Dr. Lee’s favorite methods of heightening the loyalty of co-workers is the promise of becoming his successor. It is the observation of Shepherd Peter Suh that those who were seduced by this bait were all hurt and dropped out. Dr. Sam Zun became a fallen star and tasted bitterness after being loyal for a while because of this. There are still some shepherds who are attracted to this. Another false method is that he gives away public money [money from the collected tithes from all UBF chapters] as if he gives his own personal money, in order to heighten the loyalty toward the human Samuel Lee.

He can take advantage of these methods at times, but in the long run this plants unbelief and disillusionment in the heart of close co-workers. Since there are so many examples like this, I cannot mention everything. Too much artificial work in UBF blocks the work of the Holy Spirit and make so many shepherds and missionaries utterly worn out.

D. The work of self-administration and self-regulation of each chapter should be absolutely guaranteed.

Dr. Lee is always boasting that no branch of any church can serve the ministry more freely than UBF. But in reality UBF (esp. UBF-USA) structurally employs the policies of thorough superintendence and information, so that the directors are suffering so much because of their inner trouble without working according to their conscience of faith and the direction of the Holy Spirit. One of the reasons M. John Shin, of New York, submitted his resignation last year is that Dr. Lee tortured him psychologically through continuous loyalty checks as well as giving him the directions through M. Wesley Yoon. (Dr. Lee said to the other co-workers that M. John Shin went to the world in order to find his job because of his love toward the world and the material.)

When I was serving the ministry in Toledo, I also suffered a lot and my heart was so much troubled, being stressed about Dr. Lee’s policies of information and control through M. Hee Soon and Isaac Kim. Even in Korea UBF, Dr. Lee gives the direction to Shepherd Mark Yang in order to check Shepherd John Jun. And when he wants to check Shepherd Mark Yang, he gives the direction to Shepherd Samuel H. Lee. Through this kind of political means, Dr. Lee tries to control Korea UBF completely. And in any UBF of the world, if it’s necessary, Dr. Lee has the direct relationship with the leaders ignoring the directors of the chapters. The worse thing is that Dr. Lee splits the directors and their leaders through talking about weaknesses of the directors to their leaders. (All the American shepherds who were brought into Chicago UBF from other chapters went through this process.)

Dr. Lee cut the relationship between Shepherd Mark Moran of Berkeley and M. Mark Hong, of Madison, in this method. Now, Paul Laska is suffering a lot these days, since he was not entangled in this plot.

Of course, I believe that we should maintain acts of unity, like the staff meeting prayer support, spiritual order, etc. We need the close relationships as the limbs and the body of Christ. But beyond this, the leader changes well-made programs in the middle of the meeting and meddles in everything like interfering with a well-installed microphone. He tries to be a so-called superhero or superman ignoring the body of Christ. Sitting down in Chicago, Dr. Lee is always boasting that he knows the circumstances of each chapter better than anyone else, even better than the chapter co-workers, and he gives the directions freely. But in many cases, it is revealed that it is nothing but a wild fancy.

And it brings the result that only the shepherds are suffering, caring about unnecessary things. With this kind of control and artificial work, the work of the Holy Spirit cannot grow at all. The ministry method of Dr. Lee will surely fail and his ministry will gradually collapse internally especially in a country like the United States founded on the spirit of freedom, equality and philanthropy.

III. Second Problem: The Offering Problem

The offering problem is one of the biggest things that caused me to doubt about Dr. Lee as a servant of God for the last 20 years. In the early 1970s, the first group of missionaries in West Germany sent 100 % of their offering. Dr. Lee put this large amount of money in his personal account. At about the time of the ’76 reform movement in Korea, Dr. Lee opened his personal account in Benoit, Mississippi, the hometown of Shepherdess Sarah Barry. He hoarded the money there secretly excusing the future pioneering of USA. And he used this money from this account as his personal expenses, a house and car after coming to the USA. (But to the coworkers, he told a lie that the parents of Shepherdess Sarah Barry bought the car as a gift.) This offering problem was one of the issues during the ’76 reform movement.

And in the 1980s, USA, West Germany, Canada, and Korea UBF offered Christmas offerings and special offerings for buying pioneering centers. (Examples: the purchase of the centers of Minnesota, Milwaukee, Madison, Oakton and so on.) The enormous offerings came into the central UBF. It might be several million dollars since it was accumulated for 10 years. But in reality nothing was spent from that money except buying the Northwestern center, intern shepherds’ houses around Chicago UBF and Oakton house [Oakton and Northwestern are located in Chicago, too]. I pointed out this problem in my early ’90s letter and mentioned about the unreasonableness that M. Grace A. Lee [the wife of Samuel Lee] was the treasurer of the Central UBF for such a long time, which outwardly M. Maria Ahn was set as a new treasurer.

At that time, when the account of the central UBF was passed on to M. Maria Ahn, there was almost no balance carried over, even though the balance should be nearly about $1,000,000. (This account book of central UBF is veiled in mystery like North Korea. There is no audit. And nobody knows the true facts.) And even after this, Dr. Lee spent money freely. (For example, he received $10,000 to $20,000 from M. Jackie Lee under the name of M. Sarah Barry and then spent that money without giving it to her, and so on.)

The worse problem is that to the co-workers he made false propaganda that he was clean-handed and lived a poor life. According to the account book, Dr. Lee received $1,500 [monthly] from Chicago UBF, and he reported that to the IRS [the tax office]. But the bigger problem is that in reality he uses the offering money, offered by the sweat of the brow of brothers and sisters all over the world, personally without fear and trembling. Suppose, for example, Dr. Lee gave $20,000 to his second daughter Little Sarah for her wedding gift. Even in a rich family in the USA, it is not an easy thing to do this. How can a poor servant of God, who receives $1,500 monthly without doing any other business, give away such a amount? This arouses my big suspicion. (According to the rumor, and as Dr. Lee himself admitted in his announcement, he hoarded this offering money secretly and invested it somewhere else.)

In fact, outwardly Dr. Lee did the work of the Lord very hard. Therefore I think it is better for Dr. Lee that, if he needed more money, we could arrange a high salary scale and he could use the money freely within that limit and not touch the offering. But in present circumstances, there are three deep spiritual problems.

First, the falsehood and hypocrisy are the main problem. In reality, Dr. Lee has an enormous amount of money under his control. But he says he is living the poorest life. And he reported that to the IRS. If the IRS knew this and conducted surveillance, Chicago UBF and UBF-USA would be ostracized from American society. He bought an honorary doctoral degree with almost 200,000,000 won ($260,000 at that time) in Korea. But the problem is that Dr. Lee told a lie that he received that honorary doctoral degree because others recognized his service and encouraged him to receive it.

Second, the family of Dr. Lee, enjoys power, honor and wealth, while so many shepherds and missionaries live sacrificial lives shedding bitter tears and dedicate everything without being compensated that much. (In fact, God’s work is the fruit of their blood and sweat.) The only full-time shepherds who were receiving a small salary ($800 to $1,200) in USA UBF were manipulated inhumanly to the level of feeling the insults. (M. John Shin, of New York, whose children were about to enter college, received $1,500 a month. Out of that $1,500, he spent $1,000 for his apartment rent. He also received pressure about receiving the money to the degree of feeling insulted.)

Third, Dr. Lee does not have any accountability at all. The offering is public money, so it should be open to the public and audited annually and there should be no absurdities and irregularities since UBF is a nonprofit organization. But if somebody requests to open the account book to the public, eventually he will be excommunicated like M. Peter Chang, of Columbus, and me. If someone asks to Dr. Lee the reason why M. Peter Chang and James K. were excommunicated from UBF, he will tell a lie again that he did not excommunicate them but omitted their names since they did not attend staff conferences or the summer conference.

In fact, the issue is not whether or not our names were omitted from the back pages of the Daily Bread or whether or not we attended the staff conference. According to the advice of Korean shepherds, I attended the ’91 summer conference and (uninvited in the end) staff conferences until ’91. But I had to pocket not a few insults, was alienated from other co-workers and was under the superintendence as a dangerous figure. There is no other reason to be treated like this except that I presented these issues, knew too much of Dr. Lee’s darkness and became the thorn of his eyes due to his fear of my telling these issues to the other co-workers.

M. Peter Chang of Columbus was branded as a rebellious man indulged in Judaism when he tried to study the Word independently and live according to his conscience of faith having a sense of the problems in UBF. And when then something happened to me in the early ’90s, he suffered many bitter insults because of his standing on the side of truth, instead of speaking ill of me and showing his loyalty to Dr. Lee. Consequently, because of this he was branded as a “SNU Rebel” and excommunicated. (But even now Dr. Lee is still spreading the false rumor that M. Peter Chang became rebellious due to the seduction of one sister. Now this kind of fabrication of the truth and history should not be done any more.)


It is my candid feeling that I have no desire at all to work in Houston under the name of UBF because it is going far away from God’s truth like this. M. Peter Chang, of Columbus, the brothers and sisters there, M. Gus Park, of Austin, and M. John Shin, of Dallas, might have similar feelings. And I can guess that there are so many shepherds and missionaries who share our view. Our common agony is basically caused not by other co-workers but by the problems of Dr. Lee’s spiritual leadership and unbiblical way of thinking and practice.

In UBF, there are many Christians who are trying to resemble the beautiful life of Jesus and serving the flock of sheep sacrificially. And we are keeping past co-workers in mind. Therefore, I ask for prayers from many co-workers. And I want to wait for your response advice and encouragement.

After that, I want to decide the last direction. History will judge whether UBF should have undergone the inner reformation in order to be used in God’s great redemptive work with a far-sighted plan or we should have been excommunicated for making trouble and setting up obstacles to God’s work because of our wrong views. Therefore since you are the living witnesses and judges of the history as well as our co-workers sharing the blood of Christ, we are sending this letter to you.

Your servant in the Lord,
Missionary James K. from Houston, Texas
and the coworkers sharing the sense of problems