» 07/05/2012, 00.00
Saint Andrew Kim, "the light that brightens our daily faith"
Joseph Yun Li-sun
The bishop of Daejeon celebrated a solemn Mass this morning, anniversary of the great martyr's beatification, on the site where he met a martyr's death. "I called on the faithful to examine their conscience to see if they live according to the right principles," he said. We prayed for the pope who "needs all the support and love he can get."
Daejeon (AsiaNews) - Saint Andrew Kim and the Korean Martyrs
"are a shining example for the whole Korean Church," Mgr Lazarus You Heung-sik
told AsiaNews. "Once a while, I wonder
what they might think of us when they look upon our efforts; whether they are
happy of our work or not. We must often examine our conscience to see if we lead
the best possible life," said the bishop of Daejeon who also chairs the
Episcopal Commission for the Care of Migrants. He spoke on the anniversary of
the beatification of the great Korean martyr.
The shrine dedicated to the saint is located in Mgr
You's diocese. After his ordination in Shanghai, the saint came home to be hatefully
killed along with fellow Catholics. "His example is the brightest light of our
Church. At this morning's Mass, I told my parishioners that they have to reflect
upon the great saint's example, and ask themselves what he and the Holy Spirit
might think of us. It might seem old-fashioned, but it is always important to
remember that we are children of God and that we are accountable to him for our
The bishop told the thousand or so worshippers present
at the site where Saint Andrew was martyred "to pray for the pope and the Universal
Church. The Holy Father needs all the support and love he can get. The Church
must renew its spur to improve every day. In our own small way, we are trying
to do what we can."
Andrea Kim Taegon was born in 1821 into a noble
Christian family, growing up in an milieu bathed in Christian principles. His father
had turned their home into a 'house church' that attracted Christians and
neophytes seeking baptism alike. When the authorities discovered him, he
refused to give up his faith and died a martyr's death at the age of 44.
Lay people founded the Korean Church and still support
it. The Christian faith arrived in Korea in the 17th century with
foreign delegations that visited Beijing every year.
However, the new religion was unfavourably received by
the local government, which fiercely persecuted it for centuries. Today 10 per
cent of the population is Catholic, growing each year in strength.
10,000 Koreans died as martyrs during the age of persecution. Two groups were
beatified in 1925 and then 1968. On 6 May 1984, all 103 of them were canonised
by Pope John Paul II in Seoul. Ten of them were non-Korean (three bishops and
seven priests). All the others, catechists and believers, were Korean.
pushed our people to react forcefully. We have faced wars and dictatorships
under the light of this extraordinary grace. We must live up to it," Bishop You
Shanghai church draws Korean pilgrims
Church building was torn down and rebuilt as part of Pudong district's redevelopment plans. Koreans visit the site to see relic of Saint Andrew Kim, the first Korean martyr.
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The Church in Daejeon at 60
Two years of pilgrimages, martyr worship and fund raising for the poor went into preparing the anniversary. Now the diocese is sending missionaries to Mongolia and is helping other dioceses in South Korea.
Korean martyrs, a perfect example of love for Christ and one’s brothers
Korean bishops urge the faithful to learn about the lives of 103 martyrs, canonised by John Paul II, who died during waves of anti-Christian persecution that swept over the country more than a century ago. Their blood made the seeds planted by God blossom.
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The Pope has thoughts and a blessing for all North Koreans
In meeting the bishops of Korea Benedict XVI praises their initiatives in favour of reconciliation. He talks about missionaries’ contribution and the witnesses of faith offered by Asian Churches. He stresses the importance of the family.
Korean Church to examine the beatification of the bishop of Pyongyang and companions, martyred by Kim Il-sung
The Bishops’ Conference announced that in late November that it will begin to assess whether Mgr Francis Borgia Hong Yong-ho and his 80 companions can be considered as martyrs. Jailed in 1949, Mgr Hong has been missing ever since. The group includes Mgr Byrne, a Maryknoll missionary forced on a "death march" by the soldiers of the North Korean regime.
Pope Francis tells young people that “genuine love” is not a “soap opera”, but Christians’ real identity card
In his homily for the Jubilee of Teens, Pope Francis asked questions and gave answers to the 70,000 present. Stressing the great ideal of love as giving oneself “without being possessive”, he noted that freedom is “being able to choose the good”. He warned young people “who dare not dream,” telling them that “If you do not dream at your age, you are already ready for retirement”. He also received funds raised for the Ukraine, and appealed for the release of bishops and the priests held in Syria.
Odd alliance between the US and Iranian fundamentalists
Washington is still preventing the use of US dollars in transactions with Iranian banks, preventing business with the outside world in spite of the nuclear deal. This way, the US is helping Khamenei and the Revolutionary Guards, who want to torpedo the agreement in order to maintain their hold on power. Meanwhile, most Iranians hold down two or three jobs just to make ends meet. An unstable and bellicose Iran is a boon for arms sales. A report follows.
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