|* Prayer Meeting for Christian Unity Held |
The CBCK Committee for Promoting Christian Unity & Interreligious Dialogue and the Korean National Council of Churches (KNCC) of the Protestant Church held the 2004 Prayer Meeting for Christian Unity at Dapdong Cathedral of Incheon on January 29, 2004 on the occasion of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (Jan. 18 to 25, 2004).
In the Meeting, held with the theme, "My peace I give to you"(Jn 14,27), some 300 Christians participated, including the Most Rev. Boniface Choi Ki-san, President of the CBCK Committee for Promoting Christian Unity & Interreligious Dialogue, the Rev. Paul Lee Chang-young, Undersecretary of the CBCK, and the Rev. Paek Do-woong, a Protestant minister and General Secretary of the KNCC.
The attendants sincerely prayed in one heart and made a renewed resolution for promoting Christian unity throughout the meeting, which went on following the booklet prepared by the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the World Council of Churches (WCC).
The Most Rev. Choi said in his welcome address, "Christ is peace and we can deliver this peace to our neighbors when we live with Christ," and asked all Christians to promote unity through the prayer meeting and to bring peace to this land.
The Rev. Kim Sang-geun, President of the KNCC Committee for Christian Unity, gave a homily, saying, "Just as the Bible era, today's world is also polarized into the good versus the evil," and stressed, "For people of this age, peace is the hope and Jesus' peace is the power to transcend death."
* "House for Migrant Women" Opened in the Diocese of Taejon
"Moses," the Pastoral Center for Migrant Workers in the Diocese of Taejon, opened "House for Migrant Women" in Cheonan on Jan. 28, 2004 to positively cope with the problems migrant women experience in Korea.
It is known that many migrant women who got married to Korean men, usually in rural area, have many difficulties such as communication problem with family members, cultural differences and sometimes inhumane treatment and domestic violence, either physical or mental.
The Diocesan Center, while providing pastoral care for migrant workers for about one year, realized that to protect and educate migrant women is a primary challenge, considering its geographical characteristic of being adjacent to rural area.
"It is the fruit of a long-awaited hope," Ms. Anna Bae Hyeon-mi, the director of the House said. "We believe that this house will contribute to console and educate migrant women so that they can regain trust in our society and that we can restore humanity," she said.
In addition to providing a shelter for the abused migrant women, the House will promote various activities, including giving them introduction on Korean traditional family system and culture, free counseling and if necessary, legal support services.
At the opening ceremony, the Rev. Joseph Kang Seung-soo, Foreign Workers Chaplain of the Diocese, said, "This House is the fruit of many people's love," and called for more concern and care for the House "to bear much more fruits."
* Local Catholic Weekly of the Diocese of Suwon First Published
On Feb. 1, 2004, the Diocese of Suwon published the first issue of "Gyeonggi Catholic Times," a first new weekly of the Diocese of Suwon.
With this initiative, 100,000 copies of the Times will be distributed every week for free to 156 parishes and organizations in the Diocese, with the help of Gyeonggi Daily in editing and printing process. The publishing cost will be appropriated by advertisement income and contributions from parishes.
It is said that the Most Rev. Paul Choi Duk-ki, Bishop of Suwon, frequently highlighted the need to publish a diocesan weekly "to promote evangelization and dialogue among the faithful in the diocese and convey accurate information of diocesan events to them as promptly as possible."
* Japanese Christian Delegation Visits the CBCK to Call for Collaboration in Counteracting the Unification Church
As the members of Moon Sun-myung's Unification Church widely spread and the damage is also reported increasingly in Japan, the Japanese Christian Delegation to Counteract the Unification Church, composed of representatives from various denominations, visited the CBCK on Jan. 29, 2004 and discussed related matters.
The delegation, which made a four-day visit to Korea and met with people of various Christian denominations, offered reports and materials to awaken people to the danger of the Unification Church.
According to them, the damage caused by the Unification Church in Japan amounts to 2,500,000,000 yen in only one year in 2002. In particular, the number of Japanese Moonies who entered Korea after married in mass wedding reaches 6,000 but their whereabouts is unknown.
At the meeting, the Rev. Paul Lee Chang-young, Undersecretary of the CBCK, asked them to provide relevant materials through the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan, the counterpart of the CBCK, and promised to collaborate with the Catholic Church in Japan in coping with this problem.