Message for the 99th World Day of the Migrants and Refugees
On the occasion of the 99th World Day of the Migrants and Refugees, the Most Rev. Simon Ok Hyun-jin, President of the CBCK Committee for the Pastoral of Migrants and Foreign Residents Living in Korea, issued a message with the theme, “Migration: Pilgrimage of Faith and Hope”. Bishop Ok stressed on the necessity of both pastoral care for multicultural families and new attitudes towards migrants and Sae-teo-min (North Korean defectors).
On multicultural families, Bishop Ok said that the Church should consistently support them to build egalitarian families based on understanding and cooperation without any discrimination and the relation of master and servants.
“As the Bible said, ‘I was a stranger and you welcomed me’ (Mt. 25, 35)”, Bishop Ok said, “we need to actively help migrants have their fundamental human rights.” In addition, he asked the faithful to put more efforts to create conditions that migrants will be able to return to their homelands with pride and self-respect after they have made a contribution for our country not just simply get paid for their labors.
Bishop Ok did not forget to mention on Sae-teo-min. He said, “we should help them settle down as soon as possible and live with hope in the same level as a South Korean citizen.” He said that the Church would work harder to support them in various ways and also try harder for the faithful to have new attitudes towards Sae-teo-min
On the conclusion, Bishop Ok mentioned Korean culture is one of many cultures in the world. He added when we realize that all the people are children of God, we will be able to accept multicultural families, migrants and Sae-teo-min as our brothers, sisters, and neighbors.