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Communication on Nov. 14

2009.08.25 10:50

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* Message for 2003 Biblical Week Issued

On the occasion of the Biblical Week, November 23-30, the Most Rev. John Chrysostom Kwon Hyok-ju, President of the Biblical Committee of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Korea (CBCK), issued a message and invited the faithful to "read, meditate and preach the Bible in the light of Jesus Christ."

"The primary duty of the servants of the Word, in the face of the current of pluralism and the stream of the times, is to put the focus on Jesus Christ and for this, we should read and meditate and preach the Bible everyday in the light of Jesus Christ," the messaged read.

"We decided the title of the message 'I am the way, and the truth, and the life (Jn 14,6)' because these words present the blueprint to the servants of the Word who have to work in the current of the pluralism of the 21st century," the Most Rev. Kwon said and added, "this means to return to Jesus who is the Word itself and the source of the vision of the Church and divine force."

The Most Rev. Kwon expressed concerns about the current of the pluralism saying, "In recent days, three phenomena mingled with the spread of natural religions, the overflowing of new spiritual movement and trends of postmodernism have been working effectively among people while the identity of Christian faith of the believers is shaken," and went on, "the influence of the pluralism has torn down finally the boundary line between the good and evil, truth and untruth, and such trends make Christians confused."

"The Bible will become living words to the world when we read, meditate and preach it in the light of Jesus Christ, (...) and the natural spirituality, peace, self development that people seek for them are in the Bible and these are already breathing in it." he said.


* Church Concerned about Undocumented Migrant Workers

As the closing day for report of the undocumented migrant workers, November 15, 2003, the Most Rev. Peter Kang U-il, President of the Committee for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerants of the CBCK, called a meeting of the priests of each diocese in charge of pastoral care for the foreign residents in Korea on November 7, 2003, at CBCK's conference room.

The Most Rev. Kang and the participants discussed issues regarding pastoral ministry for migrant workers, especially problems of undocumented migrant workers who failed to report or are hiding, consequently, becoming target of police control and cracking down.

The participants agreed to make further discussion at the next meeting scheduled for December 12, 2003 and continue to make efforts in collaboration with the Committee for Labor Pastoral Ministry of the Archdiocese of Seoul to find concrete pastoral plans for migrant workers and countermove to government's control that will follow the closing day of report of undocumented workers, November 15.

Last week, two migrant workers, one from Sri Lanka and another from Bangladesh, facing a hard choice between voluntary departure and forced deportation, committed suicide.

According to the Justice Ministry and Labor Ministry, about 10,000 foreign workers, less than 10 percent of those destined for deportation, left the country as of November 13. The remainder should leave the country by November 15 or face deportation from Monday, November 17.

Out of the 130,000 foreign workers - 80,000 who stayed more than four years and an additional 50,000 who failed to register under the new work permit system - who face deportation, only 10 percent, or some 10,700, of them have so far left the country voluntarily, according to the Labor Ministry. The rest are still in hiding throughout the nation.


* Street Cultural Campaign pro Life Held

The Headquarters of the Life 31 Movement of the CBCK (Responsible: the Most Rev. Peter Lee Ki-heon) held a street cultural campaign for life at Marronnier Park, Daehakno, downtown Seoul, on November 8, 2003 with large participants of youth and pro-life supporters.

With theme of "Save One more life", the Headquarters had occasion to spread out the pro-life movement of the Catholic Church through various cultural events such as street parade, character shows, music and dance performances by volunteer talents, photo exhibition on love of life and love of nature and other similar programs showing the preciousness of life on the one hand and the critical consequences of the culture of death such as abortion, cloning, capital punishment, war and environmental pollution on the other hand.

His Eminence Stephen Cardinal Kim Sou-hwan who participated in the street parade with the Most Rev. Peter Lee said that "the root cause of current crisis of our society with increasing suicides and low birth rate finds in ignoring the preciousness of life," and stressed, "life is the most precious and important thing in the world and it contains eternal life because it is made in the image of God."


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