The Rev. Dr. Sang K. Choi was installed as superintendent of the Kane District during a service on October 23, 2022 at Kane First United Methodist Church.
Rev. Dr. Choi shared his first experience coming to Kane. As pastor of a Korean congregation near Pittsburgh, he had agreed to share his Korean ministry with a church in the Kane District, not realizing the long distance from Pittsburgh. He reminisced about using a paper map to navigate and driving down a long and winding road with forest on either side. “I never imagined I would be called to serve the Lord here,” he said. “I am certain God has a marvelous plan.”
Preaching a sermon entitled “See You in Galilee” that focused on Matthew 28:1-10, Rev. Dr. Choi reminded the congregation that they are all a resurrection people beyond Easter Sunday. He emphasized the resilience of people designed by God and the opportunity beyond many challenges that the church is facing. “Resilient pastors, resilient church leaders,” he explained, “rely on the resurrecting power of God.”
Rev. Dr. Choi asked himself “What is God’s vision? What is God telling me to do as I work together with you?” He then asked a similar question of the congregation, pondering what God is calling them to do for the resurrection of church ministry. His implored the people of the Kane District to continue to bring hope, light and victory to all living in their communities.
“God is great,” Rev. Dr. Choi proclaimed. “Wonderful, awesome, almighty. And God has a purpose for all of you.”
In her introduction of Rev. Dr. Choi, Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi extolled his many accomplishments and his “heart knowledge, book knowledge, and spirit knowledge.”
A number of people participated in the service. Organist Debbie Airgood provided music and the Kane First UMC choir and handbells groups performed. Jong Lee sang a beautiful and moving rendition of the Lord’s Prayer. Rev. Beth Rosler and Wesley Sprankle, the youth coordinator for the district, read scripture.
Members of the Kane District presented Rev. Dr. Choi with signs of his superintendency; the Bible, water, bread and cup, a hymnal and Book of Worship, a towel and basin, a stole, the Book of Discipline, and a globe. Each sign signifies a responsibility he will undertake as District Superintendent.
One of the more meaningful objects presented was the handcrafted cup and plate. These items were created specifically for Rev. Dr. Choi. The cup was made from black cherry, a native wood from the Kane District, and a wood native to Korea called zelkova.
Those who participated in this presentation included Jan Clark, Gail Cook, Isaya Miller, Rev. Bill Beatty, Sam Richardson, Gary Bloomgren, Rev. Matt Williams, Rev. Nate Fugate and Shaun Panek.
An offering was collected to benefit the Youth Fund of the Kane District.
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