Escape from North Korea

Her feet barely touched the dirt road as she fled for her life.  But  Po  suddenly stopped in her tracks.  Her eyes widened, staring at the rushing, icy river separating her life of slavery in North Korea and the Chinese border, which meant freedom.

“Can I do this?” she whispered.  But her fear soon melted into courageous faith.  After remembering God’s faithfulness and His presence–sustaining her during her last seven years in a labor camp because of her faith–Po ‘s resolve transformed into steel as she prayed,  “After making it this far Father, I’m certain that you are with me and aiding my escape.”

She slowly sank into the river.  The icy burn immediately paralyzed every limb, sending her into shock.  After mere minutes, she drifted out of consciousness, succumbing to the deadly cold.  Desperation led  Po  to this point.  Her captors had tortured her husband to death and starved her daughter until her final breath.  Po knew that it was only thanks to the Lord that she herself hadn’t been counted among the dead as well.

Like other Christians in North Korea,  Po was willing to risk everything to escape.  Even if it meant losing her life.   North Korea has for years held the #1 spot on the World Watch List–because of the Kim dynasty’s goal of not merely suppressing the gospel, but wiping out any trace of it altogether.

In this area of the world, Christians pray with their eyes open. They share the Scriptures through whispers in the middle of the night.  And many dare not even tell their own spouses or children about their faith in Christ fearing their families may suffer for their choices.

Suddenly Po awoke with a jolt.  Alive!   “But how…?”  She had somehow drifted to the shore on the other side of the river.  Without a moment more of hesitation, she broke out in praise to her Father, her hands lifted and her heart overjoyed.  She later continued her journey from China to South Korea, where she lives today and shares her story of God’s power, love and faithfulness.

Currently Open Doors has partners on the ground in North Korea who are ministering to persecuted believers like Po, distributing food, medicine, clothes and Bibles. They’re broadcasting Christian radio programs and providing seminary, discipleship and evangelism training to the secret church.  They are ministering to trafficked women. Your support is making it all possible.

  • The above story is true, published in the OpenDoors newsletter.  Learn how you can help persecuted Christians by going to:
  • Remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.  Hebrews 13:3
  • SONG: HUG THEMLyrics by Liana Wendy Howarth; music by Kathleen


This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:

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About Kathleen

God delights in working through His people as they submit to Him. Jesus said to go into all the world and preach the good news to everyone (Mark 16:15). No matter where we live on this planet, people are separated from God because of sin. We ALL need a Savior, and there’s only ONE. It brings me great joy to share Christ with the lost and lonely. Over the years I’ve learned a great deal while facilitating Bible studies. I’ve found myself on college and university campuses, the beach, the streets, the hospital, the jail and the juvenile facility for incarcerated teens sharing God’s message of love. I also serve as an online missionary with Global Media Outreach. I’ve seen countless lives transformed when people turn away from sin and turn to Jesus. The changes God makes are real and lasting. These are some of my experiences. NOTE: My stories have been altered, removing any and all identifying factors. This includes names and other particulars in order to protect confidentiality and anonymity.
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