Korean churches in 10 different regions of Southern California held joint worship services early on Easter morning to celebrate Easter. In particular, the services held in the Inland Empire, South Bay, Orange County, and others had a portion during the prayer time in which the congregants prayed for Rev. Hyeon Soo Lim, a Korean Canadian pastor who is currently serving a life sentence in the North Korean prison.
The worship service that began at 5:30 AM in the eastern region of LA County (including cities like Rowland Heights and Diamond Bar) was attended by some 200 congregants, and pastors who lead churches in the region led different portions of the worship. The gathering was hosted by the LA Eastern Region Church Leaders' Council, and Rev. Tae Hyung Ko of Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church of the ECO preached a sermon titled, "People Who Live by Faith in the Resurrection," on Acts 10:34-43. Unity was particularly emphasized during this service as the choirs of various churches in the region came together as one choir to perform a worship song. An offering was also collected during the service to use for missions in the region and to give scholarships to young students in various churches of the region.
At the same time, some 100 congregants of multiple churches gathered at the joint service in the Inland Empire hosted by the Inland Empire's Church Leader's Council. Again, pastors of different churches in the region led different portions of the service, and Rev. Suk Kil Yoon of Eden Mission Church preached a sermon on John 20:24-29 titled, "Be One Who Believes." Church pastors and leaders, with their spouses, of the different churches sang a song together, and those who were present at the gathering also prayed for the release of Rev. Hyeon Soo Lim, as well as for peaceful reunification in Korea.
In Orange County, the joint service took place at Irvine Onnuri Church, and the gathering was hosted by the Council of Korean Churches in Orange County, the Orange County Korean Pastors' Association, and the Orange County Lay Members Association. Members and leaders of these various councils and associations led the different portions of the worship service.
Those at the Orange County service prayed for the unity and revival of churches in Orange County; for the next generation; for restoration of human rights in North Korea and reunification in Korea. Prayers for Rev. Hyeon Soo Lim were requested in particular during the announcements at the end of the service.
"We proclaim to the world that Jesus Christ is our king," said representatives at the gathering, reading a statement released by the hosting organizations. "We believe in Jesus Christ's death and resurrection, and confirm that we are the witnesses of his resurrection. We commit our lives to missions and evangelism in accordance with the Great Commission given to us by Jesus Christ. We will pray and love others each day for the spiritual revival of Korea and the United States."
Some 200 individuals gathered for the service in the South Bay region, which took place at Dae Heung Presbyterian Church in Gardena. A choir comprising of members of multiple churches in the South Bay region performed a special worship song, and pastors part of the South Bay Korean Pastors Association also sang a song together during the service.
Individuals at the South Bay gathering prayed for further evangelization of the community, and for the churches in the South Bay; for the U.S. and the next generation; and for the release of Rev. Hyeon Soo Lim and others who are imprisoned.
Joint worship services also took place in the San Fernando Valley, in central Southern California (around Buena Park), in Victorville, in Ventura, and in the Antelope Valley. Two joint services took place in Los Angeles: one at World Agape Mission Church, and another at the Seoul International Park in Koreatown.