At Home in Exile: Finding Jesus Amoung My Ancestors & Refugee Neighbors

Reviewed byGabby Carlson, a sophomore professional writing student at Taylor University and editor of The Echo newspaper



Title:At Home in Exileat-home-in-exile-image

Author: Russell Jeung

Publisher Zondervan

Publication Date:

Format: Paperback

Length: 202 pages


Russell Jeung’s memoir of his days in the poorest parts of California wrestles with the best and worst areas of his life and ministry. Oakland, and specifically Oak Park Apartments, became the home of this Stanford graduate for more than 20 years. He felt called to live with the less fortunate members of society—vagrants, vagabonds, foreigners, the unemployed and undereducated, and persons mentally challenged. These immigrants and outcasts—similar to himself as a youngster–had nowhere they could call “home.”  So, Jeung worked to create a healthy environment for people of all ages by initiating numerous self-advancement programs in the community.  Jeung tells of going into roach-filled, carpet-stained apartments, where he revealed to people that an eternal home in glory could be theirs if they put their trust in Christ.


Although Jeung helped shape the community of Oak Park, he was shaped, in turn, by Oak Park and its occupants. When he was younger, the grandmothers, mothers and friends of Oak Park took him in and protected him against the violence of the streets, as well as provided him a place to live. He returned to the community with a vision to show how to live in peace and abstain from violence. Today, he believes his message is transferrable to all Christians, challenging them to pursue positive community interaction instead of living isolated lives in pursuit of material accumulation. Using witty comic relief, his background in sociology and his Chinese heritage, Jeung paints a beautiful picture of overcoming even the most difficult circumstances and finding peace among the restless.



Rating (1 to 5)

4 out of 5 stars

Suggested Audience

Adults who enjoy biography

Christian Impact

Russel Jeung glimpsed a world where the presence of Jesus hardly existed. With his Christian upbringing, and calling from God to the poor, Jeung shows his readers the importance of bringing light to a dark world. God showed Jeung miracles in Oak Park that revealed His power, something Jeung never would have seen in a suburban area. This memoir gives insight into what God wants from believers in regard to helping those who feel socially exiled.


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At Home In Exile: Finding Jesus among My Ancestors and Refugee Neighbors

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