As six-year-old Isaiah Beiler of Macungie scurried exuberantly with a small herd of other young children, it was hard to believe he had once been shy. But he had been, his mother Holly Beiler said, until weekly visits to the Korean Church of the Lehigh Valley in Whitehall helped to change that.
Beiler and her husband, John, adopted Isaiah from South Korea when he was four months old and as he grew he had questions about where he came from that his parents felt ill equipped to answer. So the Beilers began frequenting the Korean church and found that not only did Isaiah feel at home but so did they and their other son, 10-year-old Jonah.
"Both of the boys take Korean language in the Korean school and they love it," Beiler said at the church's Korean Adoption Sunday, an annual event that seeks to expose children adopted from Korea to the culture they left behind.
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Jon Chung Kim, a tae kwon do grand master, said the church has been holding Adoption Sunday every year since 1997 as a way to show appreciation to American families who lovingly raise children from his homeland. And it also keeps the children in touch with their roots in a place where most of the people look like them, he said.
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