He and his wife, Pam, began the ecumenical organization 25 years ago to bring the churches of Hawaii together for encouragement, to provide tools for ministry and to promote collaborative Christian work.
The work of the Chuns to unite the churches of Hawaii “is nothing short of astounding,” said Tom Taylor, deputy executive director for mission for the PC(USA).
“It shows what God can do through humble people sold out for the cause of Christ.”
Taylor was on hand for the recognition, which took place at HIM’s 25th anniversary conference held April 3-5. The event brought together nearly 4,000 people.
Included among those honoring Chun for his longstanding leadership and service was Hawaii Governor Linda Lingle, Hawaii Lt. Governor James R. Aiona Jr., Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann and Hawaii State Senator Norman Sakamoto.
Lingle noted that Chun has done many things to bring Christians in Hawaii together, including organizing a citywide worship service immediately after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the Eastern U.S. Several thousand people attended that service held at Aloha Stadium.
Chun said 25 years ago he and his wife retreated to a secluded hotel to hammer out what they believed God was calling them to create in the Hawaiian Island Ministries. He said he initially suggested that the ministry be called Hawaiian Ecumenical Revival (HER), but that his wife, a strong leader in her own right, successfully lobbied for calling the ministry HIM.
Today the non-profit organization works to strengthen pastors and local churches across the Pacific Rim.
In addition to his work with HIM, Chun also serves the PC(USA)’s most ethnically diverse church, said Taylor. Chun has been pastor of First Church since 1994 and has led the congregation during its purchase of the 250-acre Ko’olau Golf Course, a move necessary after the church outgrew its Oahu property.
The church uses the large clubhouse and meeting facility for its Sunday worship services and mid-week meetings, and partners with another agency to operate the golf course during the week.
Information for this story furnished by Tom Taylor, deputy executive director for mission, General Assembly Council.