Immanuel Hmong Lutheran Church started in 1992 by Ger Yang with about 15 families of 60 souls including strong families (husbands, wives, and children). Tragically in December 1995, Ger Yang died in Thailand during his 3rd missionary trip. After Ger's death, most of the families left the church. What was left of the church congregation was Chao Yang, the daughter of Ger Yang and her siblings, a couple widows and some young men including, Pheng Moua. On October 16th, 1996, Pheng Moua was ordained and called to serve Immanuel Hmong. The Lord has been able to turn around Immanuel Hmong from all the obstacles and hardship, with a few widows and orphans into nowadays a church of 40 families of 220 souls.
Pastor Ger Yang | June 5, 1947 - December 2, 1995
Ger Yang. A name to be remembered by those who walk with the One who walked on water. Before Immanuel Hmong Lutheran Church, there was only a man named Ger Yang and a small congregation of Hmong immigrants.
Sunday worship was held late in the afternoon at Emanuel Lutheran Church, where families congregated for reasons beyond cultural commonalities. Above all, they were there to hear the Good News. But they were also there to witness the beginning and end of Ger Yang, a rebel for God. A rebel for truth.
Even before he was a preacher, Ger stood for the truth at an early age. Born on June 5, 1947 Ger Yang spent his early years in Laos. Ready to experience freedom and security, he, his wife, and his six children immigrated to America in the later 1980s.
Be it his calling or a coincidence, Ger and his families moved to a neighborhood where Loren Steele, another fallen serviceman of Christ, was currently reach out to the Hmong community. The Yang family was brought to faith, and Ger was brought into the Lord’s service. Taking on this cross of burden, he helped translate the Bible for Hmong believers, interpreted sermons into Hmong. But he didn’t stop there.
He was aware of those left behind in Laos and Thailand who still had not heard the Word. Ger Yang was offered the chance to return to Thailand for mission work in the early 1990’s. There he was able to baptize families who’d never heard of Jesus Christ before.
Yearning to return to Thailand to spread the Word, he made two more trips the following years. Ger Yang died in Thailand on December 2, 1995. In his place rose two young men, Pheng Moua and Jay Lo, who succeeded where Ger could no longer continue.
Now we exist as Immanuel Hmong Lutheran Church, which once was no more than just a man named Ger Yang and a congregation of Hmong immigrants. He created opportunities for us by dedicating himself to fighting for truth. Ger Yang. A name to be remembered by those who walk with the One who walked on water.
Written by Boonmee Yang.