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Blessing and Formal Opening of the New Baran Emmaus Center: A home away from home

Date Posted: Monday, December 8, 2014


Hyangnam-eup, Hwaseong City – Baran Emmaus has formally opened the new Baran Emmaus Center last Saturday, December 06, 2014 at 3:00PM with a blessing ceremony officiated by Reverend Father John Choi (최병조 신부님), the over-all director of Emmaus Community Centers of the Diocese of Suwon.

Baran Emmaus established in September of 2005 has grown from 5 church goers to an average of 150 every Sunday and also has 8 village groups “baranggays” totaling around 300 constituents located in and around Hwaseong City, South Korea.

Father Sandy Banzuela, CFIC is the current spiritual director of Baran Emmaus and has been assigned here for almost 2 years now. Here is our quick interview with him.

Q: Father Sandy, good afternoon. You have a wonderful smile today. First congratulations on having a new center.

Father Sandy: Good afternoon too. Thank you. I feel overjoyed and fulfilled of having this new Baran Emmaus Center. Thanks to the Diocese of Suwon and particularly Father John Choi for really helping me realize this center. And most of all I thank our Lord Almighty for this.

Q: Why? Did you dream of having this center? How were you able to acquire this center?

Father Sandy: Since I arrived more than a year ago, 1 year and 10 months to be exact, I already noticed that we really need a bigger space. What we had before was only “one room” where it can only comfortably occupy 5 persons but we tried to squeeze in 30 or more persons. It was like sardines when everyone was inside. It was difficult to hold activities, choir practices, and meetings. The space is also their home away from home. Even though I know that it will be expensive to get a bigger space and maintaining it, I still pursued it for the better of the community. When I organized village groups “barangays” it becomes apparent that we need a bigger place. I prayed everyday for this. If you pray and if it is God’s will, He will provide.

Our main office, Suwon Emmaus, provided the funds for the deposit fee and on my part, I do the improvements and maintenance from the Sunday’s mass collections and donations from the migrants and my Korean friends.

Q: Well, I don’t want to take more time from you since you will have to entertain your visitors. Any parting words or message?

I just want to thank everyone involved in having this center realized: Diocese of Suwon, Suwon Emmaus, Father John Choi, Mr. Min, the Filipino community and volunteers and my Korean friends. I hope and pray that you continue to support Baran Emmaus so that it will be able to continue serving the migrants fulfill their spiritual goal and have a home away from home. Merry Christmas and Happy New year to one and all. Thank you.

A HOME AWAY from home is always what a migrant needs wherever he or she is away from his family wherever she is abroad. A migrant center is one and Father Sandy Banzuela found a way for only more than a year working in Baran Emmaus. The new Baran Emmaus is one. It is located 50 meters away from the Baran Catholic Church with its address:

3rd Floor, 30-25 Pyeong-ri, Hyangnam-eup, Hwaseong City, South Korea.
(경기 화성시 향남읍 3.1만세로 1134 (평리 30-25) 3층전부).


Baran Emmaus provides the following services:

1. SUNDAY MASS, every Sunday at 3:00PM at the Baran Catholic Church

2. Pastoral Care and Company Visits by Fr. Sandy Banzuela, CFIC

3. Men and Women Shelter

4. FUNCTION HALL (with Magic Sing) – for all occasions: Birthday, Wedding, Christening, Fiesta Celebrations as well as Meetings and church gatherings.

5. Food Catering (Managed by the Inter-Marriage Filipino Organization)

SIMBANG GABI for Christmas 2014 at 8:30PM

December 15: Barangay St. Luke (Jeongnam)

December 16: Our Lady of Barangay (Bongdam)

December 17: Barangay St. John (Danghari)

December 18: Barangay St. Peter (Yanggam)

December 19: Barangay St. Jude (Center)

December 20: Barangay St. Paul (Gumuncheon)

December 21: Barangay St. James (Paltan)

December 22: Barangay St. Tomas (Sukpuri)

December 23: Baran Emmaus Community (Center)


December 24 10:00PM

December 25 11:00AM and 04:00PM


Bank : KOOKMIN BANK (KB) 국민은행

Account No : 877001-01-535847


Contact number : 010.2066.4983

Contact person : Father Sandy Banzuela, CFIC

Website : www.emmaus.asia



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