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  • » 02/04/2013, 00.00


    World Council of Churches calls on S Korean Christians to be God's peacemakers

    Joseph Yun Li-sun

    WCC Chairman Dr Olav Fykse Tveit makes the plea during a visit to the Asian country ahead of the Council's next annual meeting in November. Believers must "make life together in peace on this peninsula possible again".

    Seoul (AsiaNews) - South Korean Christians should be "peacemakers" in the peninsula, said Reverend Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, head of the World Council of Churches. "Peace is something radical, something that has to be told and has to be believed, so that it may become possible," he explained during a visit to Busan, South Korea, venue of the Council's next annual meeting next Fall.

    Citing Psalm 85, Dr Tveit told an audience of Korean Protestants that "God will speak peace to his people" since "The Korean people have been longing for a final peace to be settled, a peace that can bring life together, make life together in peace on this peninsula possible again."

    "We live in a time when life is threatened, when injustices in the world are a reality, even a threatening reality," he said, reflecting on the global need for peacemakers in places like Syria, Israel and Palestine.

    War is not however the only threat to peace. As Benedict XVI said in his message for World Peace Day, "The difference between rich and poor is growing. The unemployment of young people is growing. The consequences of climate changes are disturbing, sometimes dangerous."

    Yet, "God speaks peace to his people so that we can become peacemakers."

    The World Council of Churches is set to meet in Busan from 30 October to 10 November 2013. Its guiding theme will be 'God of life, lead us to justice and peace'.

    Christians represent 29.3 per cent of the South Korean population. The irreligious represent 47 per cent, whilst Buddhists are another 22 per cent. Catholics are 10.9 per cent, and their numbers have been constantly growing for the past ten years.

    In the recent presidential elections, both leading candidates were Catholic. The winner, Park Geun-hye, said however that she was "non-practicing".

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    See also

    18/09/2015 KOREA
    Christian leaders from two Koreas to meet in Pyongyang and talk about peace
    South Korea's National Council of Churches in Korea (NCCK) said it will visit the North's capital city for seven days together with delegates from the World Council of Churches (WCC). Together with the Korean Christian Federation from the North, they will discuss how to promote peace to the Korean Peninsula and exchanges of churches.

    30/10/2013 VATICAN
    Pope: every Christian should bear witness to the value of everyone's dignity
    In a message to the World Council of Churches' Assembly, Francis stresses that globalisation requires that Christ's followers promote "the cultural, social and legal conditions which enable individuals and communities to grow in freedom", protect the family and guarantee an "integral education" for the young as well as the "untrammelled exercise of religious liberty" for all.

    08/08/2017 12:54:00 SOUTH KOREA
    Korean religions call for a true peace treaty between North and South

    An interfaith ceremony held in Seongju marked the 64th anniversary of the end of the war and the proclamation of the truce, which is still in force. The president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Korea reiterates the Church's opposition to THAAD.

    20/06/2006 SOUTH KOREA – NORTH KOREA
    Pyongyang's arrogance casts shadow on two peace meetings

    The North Korean envoy invited widespread indignation by talking about threats of war linked to a victory of the Grand National Party. At a Nobel Peace Prize conference, meanwhile, Gorbachev talked about the division of Korea as "fruit of the Cold War" and urged all to resolve conflicts in "national terms".

    Korean evangelicals defy bans to march for peace in Kabul

    Despite objections from Seoul and the Afghan government, the march is set to take place from 5 to 8 August. The South Korean Foreign Affairs Ministry has dispatched an emergency team to Afghanistan.

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