Catholic Church In Korea

 103 Korean Martyr Saints

 

Hyon Song-mun Charles (1799-1846)

Carolus Hyon Song-mun

 

    Hyon Song-mun Charles was beheaded three days after Father Kim Andrew. Charles is the one who introduced Bishop Imbert into Korea and helped Father Chastan get around to different mission stations.

    He was born in Seoul in 1799. His father was martyred in 1801 and his wife and children died in prison in 1839. His sister, Hyon Benedicta, was also martyred later. Charles dedicated his whole life to helping the missionaries and the Catholics. The Holy See's document praised him, saying: "His contributions are many, and he had high virtues and a warm, gentle, simple personality."

    In 1838. when the persecution started, Charles wanted to give himself up to the government authorities to testify to his faith but the missionaries stopped him from doing so and told him to remain alive to take care of the Catholics. Bishop Imbert, before his martyrdom, entrusted the Korean Church to Charles. This fact shows how highly the bishops and the Catholic people regarded him. Charles encouraged the new Catholics and went around to different mission stations to take up collections for poor people and to take care of the spiritual life of the people.

    When the persecution was over, he edited short stories of the martyrs (Kihae Diary) for distribution among the Catholics. He sent messengers to Peking frequently to have contact with missionaries. He accompanied Father Kim Andrew on his stormy voyage to Shanghai in a small wooden boat. After he returned to Seoul, he risked the danger of having Father Kim's house registered in his name. When Charles heard of Father Kim's arrest, he moved all the church money and properties to a new house he had bought.

     A few days later the police easily captured Charles in his new house. The porter who transported Charles' cargo led the way for them. When the captors rushed into the house, they found Kim Theresa, Yi Agatha, Chong Catherine, U Susanna and a few other women. It was July 10, 1846. All of them were arrested together. In prison Charles encouraged his fellow prisoners.

    Some say that Charles was severely tortured, and others say that he was exempt from torture. In any case, he was sentenced to be beheaded. According to the government record (Hyonjong-shillok), Hyo Song-mun was sentenced to be beheaded on September 19, 1846 (July 20 according to the lunar calendar). Another government record (Sungjongwon Diary) shows the same thing.

    Charles was beheaded in Saenamt'o on September 19, 1846 and he died peacefully and courageously according to the testimony of Kim Catherine. He was 50 years old when he was martyred.

 

List of Articles
No. Subject Viewssort
Notice Stories of the Lives of the 103 Korean Martyr Saints 301523
44 랑페르 드 브르뜨니애르 유스토 Iustus Ranfer de Bretenières 38820
43 김 루치아 Lucia Kim 38795
42 이 바르바라 Barbara Yi 38749
41 김 바르바라 Barbara Kim 38748
40 베르뇌 시므온 Simeon Berneux 38734
39 이광렬 요한 Ioannes B. Yi Kwang-nyol 38734
38 우세영 알렉시오 Alexius U Se-yong 38729
37 고순이 바르바라 Barbara Ko Sun-i 38722
36 박봉손 막달레나 Magdalena Pak Pong-son 38713
35 김로사 Rosa Kim 38710
34 김성임 마르타 Martha Kim Song-im 38704
33 이연희 마리아 Maria Yi Yon-hui 38704
32 앵베르 라우렌시오 Laurentius Imbert 38690
» 현석문 가롤로 Carolus Hyon Song-mun 38682
30 조증이 바르바라 Barbara Cho Chung-i 38675



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