the Solemnity of the Assumption of
the Blessed Virgin Mary
On the occasion of the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary on August 15, His Eminence Nicholas Cardinal Cheong Jinsuk, Archbishop of Seoul and Apostolic Administrator of Pyongyang, the Most Rev. Lazzaro You Heung-sik, Bishop of Daejeon, and the Most Rev. John Chrysostom Kwon Hyeok-ju, Bishop of Andong, issued Messages and called on all Christians to pray for the settlement of the peace on the Korean Peninsula, and to follow the faith of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church.
Cardinal Cheong, in his Message entitled "The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church and Mother of the Faith", said "On the 61st anniversary of the Independence Day of Korea, we desire to see the day of praising God with all Korean people who endure the pain of national division, and who try to accomplish the reconciliation and the reunification by the special grace of God." And he stressed, "Only when the faithful take the lead in sharing love with the poor and the needy can we deliver to the world the hopeful message which God gave to human being through the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary." Concluding the Message, he asked the faithful to promote and actively participate in the practical plan of the 2006 Eucharistic Congress of Seoul Archdiocese; the movement for donation of organs, collection of 100 won a day, movement for adoption of children.
The Most Rev. Lazzaro You Heung-sik, Bishop of Daejeon, also issued a message entitled "In Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Queen of Martyr". In the Message, he said, "The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary reminds us to stay in divine love just as Mary did and to think of the nature of our existence to return to God". He also urged the faithful to be a little Mary and a Martyr advancing toward God and continued, "Following the example of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the martyrs, we should give priority to God in our life."
The Most Rev. John Chrysostom Kwon Hyeok-ju, Bishop of Andong, also issued a Message entitled "The Faith and the Salvation of the Blessed Virgin Mary." In the Message, he said, "I would like to supplicate the Holy Mary, a principal patroness of the Church in Korea, to pray for the authentic peace and the reunification of Korea, embracing the sorrow and the hurt of our times." He also invoked the Holy Mary to lead us to the way of faith and salvation, and continued, "The faith of Mary who joined the salvific death of her Son through her faith, would be more brilliant, compared with the faith of the disciples who ran off."
Dioceses Aid in the Flood Victims
In the Church, the movement of sharing the love for the flood victims has been heating up in this land. Every organization and group in the Church in made a plan to collect the relief fund, and most dioceses have been collecting the extraordinary offerings for the flood victims and organizing the volunteers to help restore the damaged places. After the long period of heavy rain, the Diocese of Wonju and the Diocese of Chunchon, the most seriously damaged place, feel the heat of pouring aid in from all quarters; national dioceses, church institutions, organizations, groups, and the individual faithful. Caritas Seoul and the social welfare department in Chunchon Diocesan Curia opened a bank account for donation to flood area.
The Diocese of Wonju has delivered the collection from the other diocese and some convents, to the parishes which are under urgent needs for restoration.
The Diocese of Chunchon has been granted the collections from other dioceses. Also it sent the volunteers and relief goods to the seriously damaged parishes.
Caritas Seoul, which had aided in urgent repair work on occurring the flood, applied the relief fund, 50 million won, to the Diocese of Chunchon and the Diocese of Wonju respectively. Prior to this, Caritas Seoul opened the bank account for donation to the flood victims and has collected 113 million won up to now.