Timothy Oh

March 23, 2003|By Jason Song

The Rev. Timothy Oh preaches the Gospel to members of his Korean-American congregation in their native language: English.

Many Howard County Korean churches offer services in English. But Oh's New Life Church in Long Reach is the only one that does not deliver sermons in Korean.

Many of the 70 parishioners are bilingual but "are more comfortable in English," said Oh, who founded the church about three years ago.

"The message is the same, but the delivery is a little different," he said.

Oh, 39, immigrated from Seoul, South Korea, to Burke, Va., in 1973. He is fluent in Korean but, even as he was growing up, he realized that "one day we will need a church for people who grew up speaking English," he said.

So when local leaders asked Oh to start a church for Koreans who are more comfortable with English, he jumped at the chance and moved to Long Reach to start the church.

"You could see that that population was already there and would continue to grow," he said. "It's been a great opportunity."

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