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The representatives of seven major religions in South Korea visited North Korea

 

 

The representatives of seven major religions in Korea paid a visit to Pyongyang, North Korea from September 21 to 24, 2011. This visit was to smooth strained relations between South and North Korea, not with the political logic which sticks the confrontation, but with the religious "logic of love". The representatives were the Most Rev. Hyginus Kim Hee-joong, Archbishop of Gwangju, President of Korean Conference of Religion and Peace (KCRP) and President of the CBCK Committee for Promoting Christian Unity & Interreligious Dialogue, Ven. Jaseung, President of Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism, Rev. Kim Yeong-ju, General Secretary of the National Council of Churches in Korea (KNCC), Ven. Kim Ju-won, Director General of Won-Buddhism, Mr. Han Yang-won, President of the Association for Native Korean Religions, Mr. Choi Geun-deok, President of Sung Kyun Kwan Association of Confucianism in Korea, and Rev. Yim Woon-kil, Supreme Leader of Central Headquarters of Chondogyo. They were warmly welcomed and treated like national guests by North Korean officials.

 

They participated in the 'Congress of mutual exchange of religious representatives from South and North Korea', and held a prayer meeting on Mt. Baekdu. They also met some top officials of North Korea, and visited churches and temples of 4 major religions in North Korea. Archbishop Hyginus Kim had a meaningful moment to meet North Korean Catholics at Jang-chug Church and had a time to pray with them.

 

With the Korean Council of Religionists in North Korea, the representatives issued a joint statement which says they resolve "to make an active effort to clear hostility and distrust, tension and confrontation from Korean people, to eliminate the threat of war, and to build a lasting and stable peace." They also agreed to hold a regular meeting for the dialogue and cooperation between people of religious circles in both Koreas.

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