Unforgettable Three Months at ENoK

(The following message is the third and last of the series from three North Korean defectors that spent the early months of 2020 at ENoK. Their words were originally in Korean and have been translated into English by ENoK staff.)

I want to cherish each day I spent at ENoK where I first started to enjoy learning English.

I decided to go to Chicago because I wanted to overcome my fear of learning English. I simply wanted to overcome this fear and begin to enjoy learning English.

It was not an easy process for me to clear my plan to make this trip possible. There was also a lot of advice from others against this trip, but I was determined and finally got on the flight bound for America.

A few minutes after the arrival at the airport, someone came to pick us up. I had no idea that he was going to be one of the teachers. For he looked so young, so I thought he was simply taking us to our living quarters. But everything was beyond my imagination.

Chicago was very cold. The first day, the director of the program gave us a ton of vocabulary to memorize. I was dumbstruck by the sheer amount. Nonetheless, I studied hard, and I have no regrets. I am still amazed that I was able to memorize 60 vocabulary words each day…

When I think about my days back in Chicago, each day was spent so productively.

When I heard about the reason this program was started, the reason some teachers and volunteers began to help people like us, I could not stop crying. I don’t think I had ever cried that much before. I cried for four days straight, to the point that my eyes became swollen. My heart was touched like no other time. I also couldn’t help but feel sorry.

I am crying again as I write this message. I continue to cry without stopping whenever I think about that time…

I will never forget the people I met through ENoK. I am incredibly grateful. I am not sure how I can ever express my gratitude fully.

I wrote a few journal entries while I was at ENoK. When I open the journal again back here in South Korea, there was just one theme. Gratitude.

God showed His love through the people at ENoK. More accurately, I could feel God’s love through the people serving at ENoK.

Every day, I thanked God, “Thank you for sending me great mentors.”

Through my time at ENoK, I was able to improve my English and start to enjoy learning English. So much more than I had ever expected…

– E

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