* The Most Rev. Augustine Cheong Myeng-cho Passed Away
The Most Rev. Augustine Cheong Myeong-cho, Bishop of Pusan, passed away from lung cancer on June 1, 2007 at the age of 72. The funeral Mass was celebrated on June 4, 2007 at Namcheon Cathedral of Pusan. The deceased was buried at the Catholic graveyard of Yangsan in the Diocese of Pusan.
The funeral Mass was presided over by the Most Rev. John Chang Yik, President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Korea with the concelebration of bishops in Korea. Some 5,000 priests, religious and lay Catholics attended the Mass and prayed for eternal rest of the deceased.
In his homily, His Eminence Stephen Cardinal Kim Sou-hwan shared his condolence, saying, "The death of Bishop Cheong means a great loss to the Catholic Church in Korea, especially to the Diocese of Pusan which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. But at the same time it is grace since the Lord made the deceased 'the grain of wheat' to bring a fruit of converse, a fruit of love to us." In addition, he underlined, "We should ponder over and learn the love, endurance and hope that the late Bishop showed in struggling against the disease and left to us through his death."
The late Bishop was born in Geoje, Gyeongsangnam-do in 1935 and ordained a priest in December 1962. He was appointed as the first Bishop of Military Ordinariate in Korea on October 23, 1989 and ordained a Bishop in February 1990. Then he was appointed as the Coadjutor Bishop of Pusan in November 1998 and took possession of the see of Pusan as the third Diocesan Bishop on August 28, 1999.