Seppo Salko

Seppo Ilmari Salko (born 20 April 1941[1] in Oulu, Finland[2]) is a Finnish retired elementary school teacher and a former missionary to Taiwan with the Finnish Missionary Society (FMS), and together with his wife the longest serving employee of the FMS dormitory in Taichung, Taiwan.

EducationEdit

Salko went to school in Lappeenranta, Finland. During his early years there he became acquainted and friends with Sakari Pinola, who later recruited him to missionary work in Taiwan. Salko has said he “grew up together” with Pinola.[2]

During his years at school, Salko was such a pious man that his classmates called him “pastor”. He participated in the Lappeenranta parish youth group of mission friends.[3][4] He did not go to high school, but instead studied to become a teacher in the Heinola Seminary, where he met his wife to be, Marja-Liisa Raulamo, who came from Tampere. Salko graduated in 1964, and Raulamo the following year.[3][5] It appears that the Salkos got married in 1965. Part of the engagement was a pledge to go out as missionaries.[3]

Work in FinlandEdit

The next five years the Salkos worked as teachers in Ristijärvi in the Kainuu province. During that time they furthered the missionary cause in the parish. Salko reported in the FMS magazine Suomen Lähetyssanomat in 1970 of a lunch that was arranged as a fundraiser, which had yielded more than 3000 Finnish marks for mission work. After the five years in Ristijärvi, the Salkos found themselves in 1970 in the mission candidates’ course with the FMS in Helsinki.[3][6]

Work as a missionary in TaiwanEdit

The Salkos left from Finland to Taiwan on 19 October 1971.[7] Their first term as missionaries in Taiwan lasted from 1971 to 1975.[8][9][10][11] They used their first year in Taiwan studying the local languages. After that they began their work in The Finnish dormitory in Taichung, which at the time was operated in rented premises. The Finnish children attended Morrison Academy, an American school that functioned in Taichung. The distance from the children's homes to the school was between 200 and 300 kilometers.

Due to a change in the city plan, Morrison had to abandon its old campus and built a new one outside the city. At this stage, a separate building for the Finnish dormitory was built on the new campus. The planning of the dormitory building had many twists and turns, but in the end Seppo Salko had the final word in determining what the building was to be like.[12][13]

In 1974, the Salkos wrote about their work as follows:[14]

Our new home offers better living quarters for our children, as well as a quiet atmosphere for studying and possibilities for leisure activities. Housekeeping, too, has become easier due to the more spacious and practical premises. A completely new thing to be glad about is the Finnish sauna that was built next to the main bathroom. The children’s playing room is so large that lessons can be arranged there. Even though the curriculum of the American school is mostly similar to those of Finnish schools, it is natural that they give weight to different subjects. The Finnish language and Finnish geography are subjects in which we must provide complementary instruction, so that the children will be prepared for their return to Finland.

All in all we believe that the Lord Himself has created this possibility before us and opened the gates for us. With the same costs we could never offer Finnish education of the same quality and diversity from preschool to ‘matriculation’.

Our new dormitory is an answer to many years of prayers. We, the ‘parents’, pray continually that this home could fulfill its task: to be such a good place to the children that their parents could safely and free of worries dedicate themselves to their proper work.

During the school year 1975–76, the Salkos had a furlough in Finland, and another missionary couple, Simo and Tarja Lipasti, ran the dormitory during that time.[15]

The Salkos’ second term began in 1976 and ended in 1980,[16][17][18][19][20] and the third term lasted from 1981 to 1985.[11][21][22][23][24]

During the furloughs, Salko worked in the FMS headquarters in Helsinki. During 1975–76 he was responsible for the circulation of the FMS magazine Suomen Lähetyssanomat[25][26] and during 1980–81 he worked as the head of the audiovisual productions.[27]

After the Salkos’ third term, the FMS decided in 1985 that no one would be allowed to work at the Taichung dormitory for more than two terms.[28] Thus, in 1985 the Salkos remained in Finland.

During 1985–87 Salko worked in the FMS as the person in charge of matters dealing with scholarship students in Finland,[29][30] until the FMS reversed its decision on the “two terms” rule at the dormitory and sent the Salkos for a fourth term during 1987–91.[31][32][33][34]

Working in Finland 1991–95Edit

The Salkos returned to Finland for good in 1991. After this, Salko worked with the FMS, assigned to the Lapua Diocese[35] and after this during 1992–95 as the person responsible for the functioning of the FMS Mission Church at the FMS headquarters in Helsinki.[36][37][38][39] He was listed in this capacity also in the 1996 and 1997 FMS yearbooks, although he no longer worked in this assignment.[40][41][42]

Work with homeless children in St. PetersburgEdit

As a pensioner, Salko has participated in work with homeless children in St. Petersburg, Russia. He has done this as part of the Aitomiehet (‘real men’) group of the Aitolahti Parish in Tampere.[11]

He can be seen posing with other “real men” in the group's 2014 Christmas photograph.[43]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Tauno Väinölä (ed.) (1975). Me kaukana ja lähellä [‘We far and near’] (in Finnish). Joensuu: The Finnish Missionary Society. p. 150. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1975.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  2. ^ a b Pretrial protocols, interrogation of the plaintiff Seppo Salko in the pretrial investigation before the court case Prosecutor v. Ruokanen. Espoo Police, 19 May 2002.
  3. ^ a b c d "Leikkisät 17+7. Lähetyskurssi 1970" [‘The playful 17+7. Mission candidates of 1970’]. Suomen Lähetyssanomat (in Finnish). The Finnish Missionary Society (9): 258–260. 1970.
  4. ^ Ilpo Perttilä. "Non vitae sed scholae didicimus" (in Finnish).
  5. ^ Antero Valtasaari (editor) (1972). Heinolan seminaari 1899–1972 [‘The Heinola Seminary 1899–1972’] (in Finnish). Heinola. p. 187.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  6. ^ Seppo Salko (1970). "Lähetyslounas Ristijärvellä" [‘Mission lunch in Ristijärvi’]. Suomen Lähetyssanomat (in Finnish). The Finnish Missionary Society (1): 11.
  7. ^ "Kuulumisia" [‘Informal news’]. Suomen Lähetyssanomat (in Finnish). Helsinki: Suomen Lähetysseura (11): 258. 1971.
  8. ^ Ijäs 1987, s. 37–38.
  9. ^ Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1974 [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1974’]. Joensuu. 1974. p. 88.
  10. ^ Tauno Väinölä (ed.) (1975). Me kaukana ja lähellä. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1975 [‘We far and near. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1975’]. Joensuu. p. 150.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  11. ^ a b c Mikko Ollilainen. "Aitomiehet ja katulapset" (PDF). Aitomiehet, Herran Kukkaro. Aitomiehet — Kristillinen miestenpiiri.
  12. ^ "Lapsemme Taiwanissa" [‘Our children in Taiwan’]. Suomen Lähetyssanomat (in Finnish). The Finnish Missionary Society: 15. 1973.
  13. ^ Ijäs 1987, p. 36–38.
  14. ^ Seppo ja Marja-Liisa Salko. "Suomalaislapsia" [‘Finnish children ’]. Suomen Lähetyssanomat (in Finnish). The Finnish Missionary Society (4/1974): 15.
  15. ^ Ijäs 1987, p. 38.
  16. ^ Ijäs 1987, p. 37–38.
  17. ^ Tauno Väinölä (ed.) (1977). Tulevaisuuden Aasia. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1977 [‘The Asia of the Future. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1977’]. p. 148. ISBN 951-624-163-8.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  18. ^ Jouko Räty (ed.) (1978). Oikeus evankeliumiin. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1978 [‘Right to the Gospel. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1978’]. ISBN 951-624-167-0.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  19. ^ Jouko Räty (ed.) (1979). Kastamalla ja opettamalla. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1979 [‘By Baptizing and Teaching. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1979’]. Helsinki. p. 155. ISBN 951-624-168-9.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  20. ^ Kyllikki Valtonen (ed.) (1980). Jumalan koulussa. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1980 [‘In God’s School. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1980’]. Helsinki. p. 134. ISBN 951-624-172-7.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  21. ^ Mirja Poutanen (ed.) (1982). Jumalan käytössä. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1982 [‘In God’s Use. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1982’]. Helsinki. p. 106. ISBN 951-624-174-3.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  22. ^ Mirja Poutanen (ed.) (1983). "Kaikkeen maailmaan. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1983" [‘Into the Wide World. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok. Helsinki: 113. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  23. ^ Mirja Poutanen (ed.). Kristus lähettää. Suomen Lähetysseura 125 vuotta 1859–1984 [‘Christ Sends. The Finnish Missionary Society 125 Years 1859–1984’]. Helsinki. p. 126. ISBN 951-624-177-8. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  24. ^ Leena Suominen (ed.) (1985). "Kristus auttaa. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1985" [‘Christ helps. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1985’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok (in Finnish). Helsinki: The Finnish Missionary Society: 137. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  25. ^ "Staff". Suomen Lähetyssanomat (in Finnish). Suomen Lähetysseura (1): 2. 1976.
  26. ^ Vastauksemme: Lähetys. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1976 [‘Our Answer: Mission. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1976’] (in Finnish). Helsinki: The Finnish Missionary Society. 1976. p. 154.
  27. ^ Hyvä sanoma kaikille. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1981 [‘The Good Message to All. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1981’]. Helsinki: The Finnish Missionary Society. 1981. p. 174. ISBN 951-624-173-5.
  28. ^ Ijäs 1987, p. 37.
  29. ^ Leena Suominen (ed.) (1986). "Vetten yli" [‘Across the Waters. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1986’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok (in Finnish). Helsinki: Suomen Lähetysseura: 153. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  30. ^ "Pirre Saario (ed.)". Sytytä liekkisi. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1987 (in Finnish). Helsinki: Suomen Lähetysseura: 147. 1987. ISSN 0781-6162.
  31. ^ Pirre Saario (ed.) (1988). "Tule katso mene kerro. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1988" [Come See Go Tell. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1988]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok. Helsinki: 151. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  32. ^ Pirre Saario (ed.) (1989). "Ilo tulee kaupunkiin. Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1989" [‘Joy Comes to Town. Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1989’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok. Helsinki. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  33. ^ Pirre Saario (ed.) (1990). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1990" [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1990’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok: 137. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  34. ^ Tuulikki Vilhunen (ed.) (1991). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1991" [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1991’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok. Jyväskylä: 163. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  35. ^ Tuulikki Vilhunen (ed.) (1992). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1992" [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1992.’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok: 229. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  36. ^ Tuulikki Vilhunen (ed.) (1993). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1993" [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1993’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok. Pieksämäki: 180. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  37. ^ Tuulikki Vilhunen (ed.). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1994" [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1994’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok: 193. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  38. ^ Jouko Marttinen (ed.). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1995" [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1995’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok: 194. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  39. ^ Jouko Marttinen (ed.) (1996). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1996" [‘Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1996’]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok: 199. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  40. ^ Jouko Marttinen (ed.) (1996). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1996" [Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1996]. Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok: 195. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  41. ^ Jouko Marttinen (ed.) (1997). "Suomen Lähetysseuran vuosikirja 1997". Finska Missionssallskapets Arsbok: 196. ISSN 0781-6162.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  42. ^ Eeva Kemppi-Repo (1999-06-03). "Irtisanomisesta oikeuteen" [‘Dismissal to be settled by court’]. Helsingin Sanomat (in Finnish). Mielipide.
  43. ^ "Aitomiesten kuvagalleria - joulujuhla - 1 / 1 - JOULUJUHLA_2014_IMG_0592.JPG".

SourcesEdit

  • Suomen Lähetyssanomat, 1970–74.
  • Yearbook of the Finnish Missionary Society 1971–1997.
  • Ijäs, Anne (April 1987). Taiwanissa olevan Suomen Lähetysseuran koulukodin kehitys vuosina 1968–1980 [The development of the dormitory of the Finnish Missionary Society in Taiwan during 1968–1980] (in Finnish). Master’s thesis in pedagogy, Helsinki University.
  • Papers of the court case Prosecutor v. Ruokanen (2004, 2007). Helsinki Court of Appeals.