By: Angela Park, News Writer
Members of the Myanmar VASE trip spent a week sharing the love of Christ and also receiving it back from the orphans they visited.
To keep a promise she’d made to the kids two years ago, senior Hoy Lee chose to return this year. She claimed that the bond she had created with the kids was so strong that she felt inclined to go back.
For junior Chris Cho, a reason for returning was to hear the kids sing again. After hearing them sing ‘Heart of Worship’ last year, he had thought, “I need to hear that again.” He described the memory, “It was overwhelming. Their voices literally touch your heart.”
Chris reflected about the trip, “What we have is so much compared to what they have. They barely get hot water while we always have hot showers.” He reminisced, “After coming back, I actually miss the kids, the food, and the place.”
Caleb Kim, a senior, made a connection with a kid just through a violin. “He [the kid] wasn’t playing sports and just sat in the corner of the yard with his violin. I hadn’t played violin for a long time but still asked if I could play it. That put a smile on his face.”
“Myanmar has been going through a civil war for a while now. Seeing these kids who’ve endured through such hardships still manage to be happy and playful is inspiring. They were kind, well-mannered, and energetic,” Caleb shared.
Another senior Danny Jung admitted the trip changed how he viewed children totally. “Before this trip, I never used to play with kids, but every single one of them were always so happy to see us. That was a different feeling that I never felt before. He explained, “It gave me a much more positive image of kids.”
Danny described a memory with an orphan named Marciman. “She always came up me, asked me to lift her up, hold her hand, read the Bible, and make bracelets. She also painted my fingernails!” This memory was significant because “the feeling that someone depends and loves you was new and special.”
When asked about any memorable experiences, Hoy said there were too many great ones to just choose one. But she did comment additionally that she enjoyed the 12 hour bus ride coming back to the airport in Yangon with her team. “We played Heads Up, charades, and other games. It made time go by so much quicker.”
Danny agreed this was the best part. “It was really fun. We played card games, sang, and talked.”
Chris was initially not as excited this time around because he “was nervous. I didn’t know many of my teammates.” He said, “Later when we got closer at the airport, the seniors weren’t scary anymore; I got more comfortable.”
A few members had gotten stomach sickness from the different food and all agreed that it was difficult to cope with the sickness going around the members. Chris noted positively, “When I was with the kids, I forgot about it [being sick] but when I came back to the motel I would feel sick.”
When asked what they gained from this trip, all the members were in unison that the Myanmar kids taught them to be joyful and grateful for “every little thing, and to love on others as the Myanmar kids showed us.”
Hoy said, “You get to experience what it means to love others and what it means to be loved. You get to build strong relationships that grow even after the trip.”
“I learned that God was present in our lives through how the kids loved each other and us even though they don’t have much,” freshman Emily Lee said.
Like Emily, freshman Hannah Cho, reflected,“I think I gained more from them than I gave them.”
Reinforcing the two freshmen’s ideas, Danny Jung stated, “Some of the kids were wearing the same clothes for three days but they were still happy enjoying their lives. I need to learn from that.”
“This trip makes you change your views,” Danny responded when asked how he was changed. “They [the kids] don’t really need our money.” He continued, “What they really need is genuine love that you can give them.”