Friday, January 20, 2012

Praise & Urgent Action Requested!

If you were amazed by yesterday's story about getting fast-tracked by Dr. Sonali Smith's office after making a few phone calls...buckle your seat belts and read this....

While still basking in the glow of getting a world-renowned oncologist's immediate attention we received an email from Naree, one of Kim's newest friends, yesterday. To provide some context, Naree is a very recent friend of ours whom Kim literally just met this past fall as our boys and her two children were in the same tennis class. The two of them hit it off (who doesn't hit it off with Kim?) and enjoyed spending time talking to one another as they waited every week for their tennis lessons to finish. Read Naree's email pasted below (with her permission):

From: Naree P.
Date: January 19, 2012 9:47:19 AM CST
To: Kimberly Cho
Subject: hi
Hi Kim,

I have been keeping up with Peter's blog and I was so happy to hear that the hospital has let you go home! it must be wonderful for you to be back in your own bed and your children are thrilled to have you home again.

kim, it is such a small world. when i sent you the first email and told you that some of our closest friends are oncologists, soni smith was included in our list. she and her husband norm are our best friends. they went to medical school with mike (my husband) and norm was even our best man at our wedding. soni is the absolute best and I'm so thankful to hear you are under her care.

your family is in my thoughts and prayers everyday.

Seriously? What are the chances that we just happen to be friends with one of Dr. Soni's (and her husbands) best friends? All our previous connections were second-hand and professional - now we have a very tight personal connection. Just in case there was room for any pride it was if the Lord was saying, "Your connections are not going to get you through this.I have ordained this from the beginning and watch in awe as I allow it to unfold. Your ears have heard....but now your eyes are about to see." (Job 42:5)

“Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me? -Jeremiah 32:27

Many of you who have been faithfully praying for us, have been lifting up our dear 17 year old friend Andrew Park and their family in prayer too. Thank you so much!! That said, things with Andrew have taken a recent turn for the worse. Please read his blog HERE. Andrew has already begun chemotherapy and provided it is successful in bringing his cancer into remission, he will need a bone marrow donor that matches his. He needs this or quite simply - he will die. His best hope up to this point was his younger sister Emily, but they just got the results back and she is NOT a match (1 in 4 chance).

Andrew in chemotherapy
If your heart has been moved in any way by our story or by Andrew's, if you are motivated enough to pray for us or them - please go one small step further and join the bone marrow registry TODAY! (instructions below) It seems disingenuous to smile and say that we will pray for Andrew, knowing he will die without a bone marrow transplant, and refuse to even consider giving him our own potentially life-saving bone marrow. There is a time to pray and there is a time to act. Now is the time to ACT!  I am looking into seeing if there is a way to specifically request if a registrant can give to a specific patient. (will keep you posted)

James 1:27 says: Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.

The Lord has a great concern for the orphaned and the widows. It was that way in the Old Testament and certainly remained true in the New Testament. What I find remarkable is that while there is a word for children who lose their parents (orphans) and men and women who lose their spouse (widow/widower), I am not aware of any word which describes parents who lose their children. That said, I am convinced that there is no greater horror, and losing a child is just as heart-breaking as losing a parent or spouse (if not more). I know God understands this pain, like no other, and has a great heart of compassion for it, because He experienced the horror of losing His own Son - but He inexplicably did this on His own will....and He did it because of His great love towards us.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. -John 3:16

Now I had a good friend (thanks Lynn D!) do a little research for me yesterday and it turns out that it is not that difficult to be a bone marrow donor at all and it sounds more intimidating than it is - by far! To summarize here are the high-level simple steps:
1. Watch the short video below. Additional FAQ here.
2. Go to and in the bottom left there is a box called "Join the Registry". (it literally took me 10 minutes) Even if you register there is only a 1 in 540 chance that you will be a fit to donate your bone marrow, but how will you know if you don't even register?!?
3. All you need to provide is a simple "cheek swab sample" to register and see if there is a match. This can be done by registering on-line (here) and you will receive a packet to provide a sample and return.
4. If you are found to be a match with someone you will be contacted and it is a simple procedure and you will get a couple of shots (very minor pain if any) in your lower back and a small portion of marrow will be extracted. (Kim did it for her bone-marrow biopsy - it really is not that bad). The worst you will feel is that  your butt or lower back is sore for 3 days. What a small price to pay to save a life!!!
5. The typical $100 fee to even register is waived this week as American Express is sponsoring donors and covering this cost - but only during the month of January. Do you see God removing all the excuses?
There is no doubt in my mind that if every "Christian" signed up and registered no person with these types of cancer would be left to die.


Friends, there is especially a need for Asian bone marrow and the best donors are between the ages of 25 and 40. (this is when the bone marrow is most ideal to donate), HOWEVER anyone between 18 and 60 can still give. I am pretty certain most of you perusing this blog fit this profile. The reason why so many cancer patients cannot find a match is because so many of us (especially we Asians) refuse to register and make our life-giving bone marrow available to save others. I know for many of you (like me) there is simply a lack of awareness and quite frankly I had no idea about any of this until cancer landed on my front door. But now we know - and can no longer plead ignorance. I know a lot of Asian-Americans who are really good at praying, but we need more than that here. Please, let your faith not be an "impure and defiled religion" that looks the other way when people like Andrew Park are in dire need. Although, you may not know him personally, do not "walk around" this dying person, but be a "good neighbor" (Luke 10:25-37) and do whatever is in your power to care for him and thousands of others just like him. Even if 1,000 of you register only two will likely qualify to even give. So you can begin to understand the challenge of finding Andrew a donor. Please register today!!!

I will be setting up a separate web page ("Bone Marrow Donation") so this information will not get lost along with additional info once my pea-sized brain figures it out. There are many easy ways to register. If you feel led, you can even organize a donor registration drive for your church or school. This would be even better! Check out the same site for more info on local offices and how to go about doing this!

If you feel led to register and want to be held accountable to your commitment before God and man, please enter your first name and last initial, the place you live and the date you commit. (Peter C, Chicago, 1/20/12) Not trying to be legalistic, but hopefully this promise will help you to finish what the Lord has started in your heart. I have already filled out the online form (takes 10 min) and requested my "join the registry" packet today and ask that you join me. You have virtually nothing to lose and another person has a LIFE to gain.

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it. -Proverbs 3:27

Embody the gospel. Live out your faith. Love as Jesus loved.

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim


  1. I registered years you know if it ever expires and I would have to register again?

  2. Hi Peter and Kim,

    Praise God that He is showing His goodness and mercy already! When Eubin needed a bone marrow transplant, we did a worldwide search and despite the odds, we found several potential donors (most of them Korean-American), so we know the importance of signing up to be a donor. We'll be praying for Andrew and his family too.

  3. Praise God. He is good. Keep strong Peter. "Tebowing" for you guys. :)

  4. Julie, I also registered years ago, but couldn't recall the specifics. I just got off the phone with the national registry and they confirmed that I had registered in 2003. Call them at 1-800-627-7692 option 5 to confirm your registration and to also update your contact info, if needed. I had done mine in GA, so needed to change address and phone.

    Also, I asked and once you're registered, you never have to re-register or refresh your HLA type information. It doesn't change. They did say I could call the donor center (888-298-6375 x3590) and have them send me my HLA type info to share with Andrew's doctor to check for a match. I'll be seeing what the deal is later in the day when I have time to call.

  5. Also, forgot to mention that Andrew's doctor should be looking at the public registries, so getting your info is not necessarily required, but maybe a little more expedient.

  6. Peter,

    Our family will continue praying for Andrew and his family as we have been praying for Kim and you.

    I would like to especially thank you for reaching out to potential bone marrow donors. My nephew Connor has been waiting for a donor for years. A great match was found but she decided to pull out at the last minute while the family was preparing themselves for the transplant. You can read more about their story at:

    I believe that there is a link on their facebook page to get tested & register for free.

    1. Julie, I'd like to profile Connor soon. There is no reason his life cannot be saved. Can you send me some info on him to Thanks!

  7. great idea having a donor registration drive at churches, i wonder if Calvary can do this pronto...

    1. Angela, don't wait on someone to spearhead a church drive. Take the ball and run with it! And did you sign up to register yourself yet? =)

  8. Karen D., Chicago, 1/20/12

    Continuing to pray for all of you and rejoice in our Lord's sovereign care and love over us. Peter, please give Kim a hug for me.

    Karen Doherty

  9. Sally H., Chicago, 1/20/2012

    Praying for you today...amazed at how God continues to work in, around and through you guys! :)

    I read Romans 8 this morning in family devos with the kids and thought of you, especially through verses 18-39 . I kept thinking "I need to share this verse with Kim and Peter...and then the passage got longer and longer...such a great reminder.

  10. Telma L, Northbrook, IL
    Aris K, Northbrook,IL

  11. Phi L., Chicago, 1/20/2012


    Your blog has been such a blessing. We are continuing to pray for your family.

  12. Kristen and Eddie Y.
    Chicago, 5/2009

  13. Dan Y., Chicago, 1/20/12
    Jane Y., Chicago, 1/20/12

  14. We met at Harvest a couple of years ago and found that we have a connection. I teach at Glen Grove School with Jane years ago. We are praying along side you. Just wanted to let you know that we registered this afternoon.

    Audrey and David S.

  15. Thanks susie! i will look into it asap! :-)

  16. Lynn D., Seattle, WA, 12/20/12

  17. Jane H, Bellevue, WA, 1/20/2012

    That was so simple! Thanks for bringing attention to this. You and Kim continue to be an incredible blessing and encouragement. Hope you are in turn blessed and encouraged a hundredfold!

  18. Jared P., Concord, CA, 1/20/12

    Thanks for helping us be aware! Man, Prov 3:27 is right on!

    James 2:26- As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.

  19. Jane R., Chicago, 1/20/12
    Hyung R., Chicago, 1/20/12

    We'll continue spreading the word and encouraging people to register!

    I am so blessed and humbled just thinking about all the people, all over the world on their knees praying for Kim and Andrew...and so many more families in need of physical healing.

    I've got Steven Curtis Chapman's song in my head.
    "...If we turn our eyes to Jesus
    we'll find life's true beginning is there
    At the cross where He died,
    He died to bring us

  20. Dear brothers and sisters,

    Based on what I've read, it seems there is no required $100 fee to join the registry. It's a suggested donation amount to cover the costs. In January, AmEx is just donating $100 so that the cost is offset.

    With love and blessings

  21. Melissa A., Arlington Heights, 1/21/12

  22. Hi pastor Peter! :) Remember me? Its Esther from GPCYG! you nicknamed me santoki on drugs :) hahaha but I am more mature now... ;)

    I have been praying for you and Kim! the beautiful kids as well. It is amazing because though I am trying to encourage you at this moment, I feel more blessed and encouraged by how big Jesus is in your family through the tough times.

    Here is one of my favorite bible verses to remember when things get tough.

    But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. (2Corinthians 12:9)

    I am praying that through the tough times that His power and love and healing would be poured upon your family and especially Kim. I know that though Kim may be weak (physically only) that she will be equipped and ready to get through anything and everything with His grace and power! :)

    Pastor peter 화이팅! :) It is also incredible that you are caring for others in this time! I have registered for the donation and praying Andrew as well :)

  23. Ha Min Cho 1/21/12
    Esther Cho 1/21/12
    Wynne Chow 1/21/12
    Gabriel Kim 1/21/12
    Phil Han 1/21/12
    AWESOME! =)

  24. Helen L., Naperville, 1/23/12

    I love how in the midst of battling Kim's illness you are demonstrating your heart and desire to serve and love others in their struggles. You are such an inspiration and blessing to us all!

  25. I signed up. A co-worker just told me her sister had stage 4 lymphoma when she was jag's age--10 years ago--very similar to Kim. She lived in the east coast and was treated at John's Hopkins hospital. She is healthy now....but wasn't responding to chemo well when first diagnosed...her last resort was to get a bone marrow transplant. Her brother was the closest match and his bone marrow saved her life.