Yep! That's right... Ji Hyun's married! After only a few short months of dating and an even shorter stint of engagement she managed to land herself a robot making, Japanese speaking, taller than average, South Korean heart breaker, Jang Ki.
Ji Hyun was the first Korean to befriend us when we first immigrated to this hot and humid country. She met us on our very first day here as we were wandering around the street with our jaws gaping open and our pocket linings empty. She took us for lunch where she, over many repeated sessions, successfully taught us how to eat cal gook su (or a kind of warm, fat noodled soup) with skinny metal chopsticks. She put up with our ignorance of the Korean language and culture and even managed to teach us how to climb a mountain in + 40 degree weather. She also tried to teach us many different hymns in Korean, although somewhat less successfully. This I assure you was no fault of the teacher.
As we grew to know her and appreciate her love and kindness we saw that her great passion in life was first to serve her God and second to be married and have a family. God granted her wish. We were thrilled to join her on her wedding day to see her joined into this covenant in the sight of God and many others from the Korean church that we attended for so many months. We marveled at the many idiosyncrasies that make Korean weddings distinctly Korean. For example: strobe lights, monetary gifts only (which are counted when you arrived and recorded in a book for all to see - wish we would have know that before we arrived...oops!), arriving one hour early to take professional photos with the bride and the groom, and eating our reception dinner at a buffet style luncheon before the wedding and without the bride and groom. As far as we know there are no receptions here, just lots and lots photo opportunities.
Above is just one of the hundreds of group shots that is mandatory for the bride and groom to take immediately following their ceremony. You will notice the hanboks worn by the women. These are not bridesmaids, as there were none in the wedding, but instead this is Korean traditional dress that is required for special occasions including the marriage of the a family member. We were told that later in the day there will be a traditional Korean service that only family will attend and the bride and groom will also change into hanboks for this ceremony as well.
Ji Hyun and Jang Ki we wish you the best in life and marriage. May God bless you and keep you, may His face always shine upon you and may the grace of God go with you now and forever. Amen.