About Erna

Hi I’m Erna. This blog is my chance to wax poetic about being a woman, leadership, 2015.06.26_Matt Kirk_6080_smallChristian stuff, stories that amuse me, race, and social justice issues. Maybe some ponderings about music and songwriting.

I’m a Korean and white woman originally from Seattle. I moved to Los Angeles to attend Scripps college where I majored in American Studies. I have been on staff with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship for about 15 years. Before I left LA three years ago, I was the Assistant Director of the Los Angeles Urban Project and also helped oversee Black Campus Ministries in Los Angeles.  I spent two years as Director of Worship for the Urbana 15 Missions Conference. I believe that when we sing other people’s songs we need to enter into their stories and stand with them. Here’s a video that I helped produce.


I am currently the Associate National Director of Urban Programs for InterVarsity. I am pursuing my Masters in Inter-Cultural Studies under the North American Institute for Indigenous Theological Studies- which is basically a masters in getting decolonized by Native American leaders. And I recently wrapped a leadership cohort with the Christian Community Development Association.

I specialize in leadership development and  training communities and leaders to engage with issues of racial justice and diversity. I preach frequently. I love developing program. I love working with young leaders. And woman of color community is how I make it through the day.  Investing in the next generation of WOC is my passion.




9 thoughts on “About Erna

  1. Erna, I don’t know you, but I love your writing! I loved the piece on wardrobe–Calvin Chen alerted me to it–and shared it at The Well FB page. And I love this piece on a quiet and gentle spirit. Would you consider having it or a version of it as a blog post or article at The Well? I think it is a great word to all of us women who really want to be faithful following Jesus, but can get derailed by focusing too closely on one aspect of scripture.

    Thanks, Erna!

    Marcia (editor at The Well)

  2. Hi Erna …
    from … The CornerStone Initiative … a CCDA in Huntsville, AL
    re … availability to speak at C4:2016 “Better Together” … February 23rd, 2016

    We’re back from CCDA (loved your MC-ing!) and are continuing plans for our 3rd Annual CornerStone Conference for Community Compassion, February 23rd, 2016 in Huntsville, Alabama.

    We could not find an online site or form for speaker invitation for you … so what is your preferred way to receive a speaker request with detailed conference info?

    We are aware you have another huge event coming up in December, so we are praying for good work interspersed with good sabbath for you!

    Gratefully … Patty Lowe for The CornerStone Initiative … a CCDA organization in Huntsville, AL

  3. Erna,
    I’m not sure if you remember me, but we knew each other years ago when my husband and I worked with IV, too. A mutual friend posted your blog “Why I stopped talking about racial reconciliation…” and I read it, twice so far. Thank you for your insights and convicting and truthful words. One of your points got me thinking about why we, as white American slave owners for over a hundred years, would see ourselves as Israel and not Egypt. Ironically, I believe it’s not just Disney princess theology (great & appropriate title) but again, from a racial perspective – Egyptians are not “white.” I look forward to going back and reading your other blogs, and also your new ones. Bless you, sister, and may God continue to use you as a needed “prophetic” voice in these times.

    • I do remember you! I believe you were part of a very important prayer time for me many years ago. Thanks so much for reading and taking time to comment. Its true, that the Egyptians weren’t white, its more analogous in terms of who has the power.

  4. Hi Erna,
    Thank you for writing the piece about white supremacy. I would like to include this on a list of resources I use for Churches and Christian schools in Canada, where I speak to folks about white supremacy. I will cite your website, but would love to give credit with your name as well…I only see Erna. If I can give you better credit, I’d love to.
    Thanks, Kim

  5. Hi Erna, I really appreciate your voice and contributions through your blog and activism. I’m from Missouri and your video about your friend in St. Louis was really great. A friend/coworker shared with me your article on white supremacy. I was particularly interested in how you talk about the “Disney princess theology,” because me and some friends (who also work in the campus ministry setting) are working on a project called My Neighbor’s Glasses (myneighborsglasses.com). Where we’re trying to create devotional readings from diverse perspectives. Would love for you to give feedback and possibly be a guest or regular contributor if you’re interested.

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