Mihee Kim-Kort

Mihee Kim-Kort is an ordained Presbyterian (PCUSA) minister with degrees in divinity and theology from Princeton Theological Seminary and English Literature and Religious Studies from the University of Colorado in beautiful Boulder. Currently she juggles various jobs including being a wife to another Presbyterian minister, raising three children, ministering to college students as the staff person for UKIRK @ IU, youth ministry on the side, itinerant preaching, writing, rabble-rousing in Bloomington, and liking too many posts on Facebook and admiring people on Twitter and Instagram.

Born in Seoul, Korea, she and her parents immigrated here shortly after her birth. Settling in Colorado, she was baptized in a – gasp! She’s not a cradle Presbyterian – Methodist church before her family joined the local Korean Presbyterian (PCUSA) church. It was here that she learned the faith from an African American, who was a respected Elder and teacher in the church as well as a little old lady that was the wife of the former pastor of the white Presbyterian congregation that shared the building with our church.

During her undergraduate studies she skipped many classes to snowboard, checked out lectures from radical and interesting writers and teachers, and joined various Christian fellowship groups. It was during this time, and then in seminary that she began to experience a shift from traditional evangelicalism to a progressive, inclusive faith focused on God’s Good News in the here and now as expressed through social justice.

Posts By This Author

This Is My Body

What do our bodies—dreadlocks, muscles, thighs, and all—teach us about God?

ON DEC. 10, 2015, shortly after then-candidate Donald Trump suggested a “total and complete shutdown” of Muslim immigration, Wheaton College professor Larycia Hawkins wrapped a hijab around her head, snapped a selfie, and posted the photo on Facebook. “I stand in religious solidarity with Muslims because they, like me, a Christian, are people of the book,” wrote Hawkins in the post. “And as Pope Francis stated last week, we worship the same God.”

It was a costly act for Hawkins: Three months later, following a controversy about whether she had violated the evangelical school’s statement of faith, she was no longer a tenured professor at Wheaton. But Hawkins doesn’t regret what she did. As she sees it, true solidarity—she calls it “embodied solidarity”—always comes with a cost.

When it comes to bodies and the church, Christians often start with St. Augustine. Though the esteemed fourth century bishop of Hippo spent a full decade debunking the dualistic heresy that material bodies were evil, he remained famously skittish about fleshy influence on the soul. By Augustine’s reading of scripture, bodies weren’t inherently wicked, but they sure were weak—especially female bodies—and you had to watch ’em or God-only-knows what kind of sinful depravity might creep in. He often quoted the Book of Wisdom: “the corruptible body weighs down the soul and the earthly tabernacle presses down the mind that muses upon many things.” And you don’t have to be a church-history expert to trace the devastating legitimacy Augustine’s ideas gave to misogyny and other forms of body-based oppression in Christianity.

Yet as Christians in every generation have countered, we can’t write bodies off so easily. After all, smack dab in the middle of our confession of faith is a savior who suffered bodily, was crucified, and rose again. What’s more, this same savior was known for saying that love is laying down your life, and how we treat others is ultimately how we treat God. “‘Suffering with’ requires our entire bodies,” Hawkins later explained. “Suffering from a distance is not solidarity. Theoretical solidarity is not solidarity at all.”

Sojourners asked six Christian writers and theologians: What does your body tell you about God? Not bodies in the abstract, but your body: pimples, dreadlocks, muscles, belly buttons, wrinkles, thighs, and all. And though it might sound like an exercise in navel- gazing sure to make Augustine roll over in his grave, the responses we received say a lot about the carne part of incarnation: the radical solidarity of a God who took on flesh. - The Editors

Making All Others' Work Possible

by Mihee Kim-Kort 01-09-2017

We have lost touch with the deep significance of work by separating the dignity, creativity, and livelihood of work from the individual person. In today’s emphasis on consumer capitalism — results and products — we have forgotten the interconnectedness of all our work, and the way we are baptized into the human community and live out that baptism through participating in purposeful work with our hands and feet.

After Tragedy, How Do We Trust God's Power?

by Mihee Kim-Kort 08-29-2016

Image via /Shutterstock.com

A major tenet of Protestant faith is the act of confession, both as individuals and as a community. Confession can serve as a means to honestly and genuinely express not only one’s failures, or the failures of a community, but to acknowledge and lament the fragility of humanity. What would it mean for our churches to say to our neighbors that we are wholly and painfully aware of the ways in which those who profess to follow the Christian faith have failed over and over in not only the areas of tolerance but compassion? That we do lip service but when it comes to truly knowing and loving our neighbors, we have so much more work in front of us?

Guns, Drugs, Sexual Violence: What Can We Do?

by Mihee Kim-Kort 10-12-2015

Image via  / Shutterstock

The emotional, physical, and spiritual violence that we inflict on one other is a sign that something is amiss in our world. A study from the World Health Organization paints the terrible truth that sex workers have a heightened risk of HIV. The sex and drug industry “tear up women and use them ‘til they throw them out" as Rev. Rebecca Stevens, Executive Director of Magdalene Ministries, says. Magdalene is a recovery program in Nashville, Tenn. for women who have histories of substance abuse and prostitution. Stevens has helped countless women get off the streets and put their lives back together. Yet there are so many more in need. It is clear that something is persistently bent on the annihilation of our bodies and souls. What can we say or do?

Subscribe