A church in Kimwha had existed prior to Victor Wellington Peters' arrival in 1936. VW's appointment as pastor was unique in Korean Church history as non-Koreans were not appointed as pastors of Korean churches at the time. VW's appointment in essence was the result of the appreciation of the incarnational living by both missionaries and Koreans alike.
The GPS coordinates for the Kimwha Church site are 38°17'26.268" N 127°27'24.408" E.
It was at this church that Hahn Heung Bok, an Ewha graduate and Methodist worker, would come every other Friday to assist with the youth and women. While VW and Heung Bok had been a part of the same choir in Songdo, they had never interacted significantly.
A romance blossomed -- a story that will be told in more detail elsewhere -- and they were married in the church.
VW designed the Kimwha church in Korean style and the church furniture he designed was the first ever designed in Korean style. The cornerstone was laid on June 26, 1937 and dedicated in November 1937. Its English name was The Margaret Maupin Peters Memorial Church in honour of VW's mother at the request of financial donors in the United States. Everything was destroyed during the Korean War. The church was feature in Daniel Johnson Fleming's Christian Symbols in a World Community and in The Korea Mission Field. It was named in English the Margaret Maupin Peters Memorial Church at the suggestion of US donors to its building in honour of Dr. Peters' mother.
Church personnel included:
Bible Woman: Haw Jung Whan
Sunday School Superintenent: Maing Key Young
In 2019, their eldest daughter Grace Peters Alexander (Young Eun) who was born in the Kimwha parsonage was able to visit the site along with her sister, Margaret Peters Haas (Young Hae) and two nephews (sons of third daughter Elona Peters Siemsen (Young Ja)) Kirk Peters Siemsen (Hahn Sam Il) and Byron Siemsen (Shim Dan Il).
Contact us to learn more about the history of Kimwha church and Victor and Heung Bok Peters.
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