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Communications on Jan. 24, 2003

2009.08.24 13:56

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* Caritas Coreana Calls on Globalization of Love

On the occasion of the 10th Caritas Coreana Sunday on January 26 the Most Rev. Gabriel Chang Bong-hun, President of the Caritas Coreana of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Korea(CBCK), issued a message and appealed for charity of Korean Catholics saying "the globalization Christian of love should be a globalization that offers hopeful light to the poor against the darkness," and added "all humankind are children of God, thus brothers and sisters, and precious beings redeemed by the holy blood of Jesus Christ.
"The globalization sweeping over the world has led poor people and underdeveloped countries which are insufficiently competitive to the poverty more and more," he pointed out and stressed on the contribution of Christians in this domain saying "the globalization of misery is a sign of the times that obscures the future of the humanity."
The message invited the Korean Catholics to turn their eyes to the poor in the world saying "the only way to change systems and structures against justice is to live out the evangelical values and simple life by abstaining from selfishness and ambition of possession ... the Church has a precious tradition and teaching to share even the 'essential necessity.'"


* President Kim Calls on Religious Circle's Cooperation for Inter-Korean Reconciliation

On January 16, President Kim Dae-jung invited eight religion leaders including the Most Rev. Boniface Choi Ki-san, President of the Committee for Promoting Christian Unity & Interreligious Dialogue of the CBCK, to a luncheon at Cheong Wa Dae, office of the President of Korea and thanked for their generous support during the five-year of his presidency.
"Activities for inter-Korean exchange and cooperation by the religious circle in recent years have much contributed to promoting inter-Korean reconciliation," the President thanked and said he would rely on their continued efforts in the future.
In the meantime, the Most Rev. Choi thanked President Kim for the clemency he offered to the criminals under death sentence saying "we appreciate very much that for you have commuted two condemned criminals at the beginning of your presidency and four more condemned criminals recently," and added "we Catholics will continue to carry out the campaign to abolish the capital punishment with support of the National Assembly."
"Civic groups and religion circles should pursue their efforts for anti-death penalty campaign by raising the public opinions," responded President Kim, and added "this is my opinion."


* New National Director of the Pontifical Missionary Societies Appointed

On January 17, 2003, the Most Rev. Andrew Choi Chang-mou, President of the CBCK, forwarded the decree of appointment of His Eminence Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.  to the new National Director of the Pontifical Missionary Societies(PMS) to Rev. Thomas Tcha Won-sok.  
"During my five-year term of office I want to do my best to promote the status of the Catholic Church in Korea by making it a Donor Church from Receiving Church," Rev. Tcha made his position clear and added "indeed, some Churches in Asia, Africa and Latin America are poorer than we think."
"The first thing I have to do is to grasp the point of tasks of the PMS in Korea and set the direction. However, I want to make this opportunity a momentum to instill the real meaning of the mission into the hearts of the Korean faithful," Rev. Cha said and went on "the work of the PMS is not a simple missionary work, but its purpose is to assist Churches in need and share what we have in solidarity with the universal Church by means of spiritual and financial exchanges."
Rev. Tcha held a licentiate in philosophy at the Pontifical Urban University and studied in West Germany, and served as the professor and vice-president of the Catholic University of Seoul. Presently, he is the pastor of Hwagok Parish in Seoul Archdiocese.  


* Synod of the Archdiocese of Seoul to Be Opened

As the Synod of Seoul is about to open from January 26, the Most Rev. Nicholas Cheong Jin-suk, Archbishop of Seoul, issued an Opening Message and asked the faithful for prayer and participation for this diocesan Synod.
In the Message titled "Father, May They Be One in Us."(Jn. 17,21), he said, "the opinions presented during the preparation of the Synod and the proposals to be made during the sessions will be fully reflected in the pastoral ministry of the Archdiocese," and asked all parishes, institutions, religious institutes, and families to pray for the Synod and the Archdiocese.
Explaining the meaning of Synod as "to write down the history of the Archdiocese in a new way proper for the new millennium," he said "the purpose  of the Synod is to find a desirable image of the Church and her being as the light of world."
In particular, he emphasized the need to restore the communion of ecclesial community, saying "though the Archdiocese of Seoul could make quantitative growth, the communion of the members is being weakened," and hoped all the members of the Archdiocese could experience the deep unity and communion in the communion of the Trinity and be born anew to be the light to the world.
He also said to the members of the Synod, "it is not too much to say that the future of the Archdiocese of Seoul depends on your shoulders," and encouraged them to fulfill their duties and rights during the Synod.


* Diocese of Inchon Sets out the Mission to Asia

The Diocese of Inchon(Bishop: the Most Rev. Boniface Choi Ki-san) sets out the Mission to Asia in earnest.
Recently, the Diocese decided to send Rev. Jacob Kim Bok-gi to Taiwan for pastoral care of the Taiwanese Catholics, and Rev. Paul Bae Hyo-sik and Rev. Immanuel Seo Gang-hwi to China for study. It is the first time for the Diocese of Inchon to send a priest to foreign country for pastoral care of native Catholics, not for overseas Koreans there.
This action is seen as the first step for the Mission to Asia of the Diocese of Inchon which has striven for the formation of missionaries to be the "Cradle of Mission to North."
At the Mass held on January 17, the Most Rev. Choi said, "Pope John Paul II has repeatedly emphasized that Korea should play important roles for the Evangelization of Asia," and stressed, "we should make efforts to build a 'united Church' by sending priests to places where the Catholicism has not reached yet."
Noting that this sending opened the door to the Mission to the North, he promised to support the priests in every aspect so that they can perform their pastoral work appropriately.
This initiative of the Diocese of Inchon was taken to respond to the request of the Bishop of Tainan, Taiwan, who met the Most Rev. Choi at an international conference held in Malaysia in 2002 spring.


* Cardinal Kim Supports "Life 31" Movement  

His Eminence Cardinal Stephen Kim Sou-hwan promised to support the "Life 31" Movement which the Catholic Church in Korea develops in cooperation with seven other religions, civic groups and international life movements.
Rev. Casimir Song Yul-sup, Secretary General of the CBCK, revealed on January 17 that Cardinal Kim would proclaim the "Life 31" Statement with 31 persons who lead this life movement.
The "Life 31" Movement aims at making the year of 2004 as the first year of life movement by abolishing the article 14 of the Mother and Child Health Law within this year, which was established 30 years ago and allows abortions in almost all cases.
The "Life 31" Solidarity (tentative name) will meet the Chairman of the National Assembly on February 5 to urge the abolition of the article 14 of the law and have a seminar relevant to this matter. Following this, on February 7 the "Life 31" Movement will be started officially, by offering a memorial Mass for the aborted lives and making candlelight procession.


* Apostolic Nuncio Celebrates the World Day of Migrants and Refugees with Foreign Workers in Korea

On the occasion of the 89th World Day of Migrants and Refugees the Most Rev. Giovanni Battista Morandini, Apostolic Nuncio to Seoul celebrated a Mass for the foreign workers in Korea with diocesan priests of Suwon working for the pastoral care of migrants.
Some 500 foreign workers from various countries such as the Philippines, Vietnam, Mongolia and Ghana attended the Mass and renewed their resolutions to be faithful in their Christian life and to live with hope even in many difficulties.
The Apostolic Nuncio said in his homily, "a number of foreign workers in Korea suffer from discrimination, unjust treatment and personal humiliation," and  added, "what they need is fraternal concern and friendly conversation, not the eyes of people looking at them as strangers for we are all children of God."
He also encouraged the clergy, religious and the laity who work for the foreign workers to continue their effort and commitment.
Rev. John Choi Byeong-jo(Wongok parish, Suwon Diocese) said, "we invited the Apostolic Nuncio to give courage to the foreign workers in our Diocese," and added, "we will continue our efforts to offer them pastoral care and protect their rights."

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