05/14/2010, 00.00
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Church in Korea celebrates new bishops

by Joseph Yun Li-sun
The faithful around the country celebrate the installation of new bishops of Uijeongbu and Kwangju, "gardeners of the seeds scattered by the Gospel." Celebrations in Seoul mark the inauguration of the charity Foundation in memory of the card. Kim, "stimulus to improve our society."

Seoul (AsiaNews) - The Catholic Church of South Korea is celebrating its two new bishops, who according to a local faithful "show how our faith needs gardeners, who can cultivate the seeds of the Gospel." In recent weeks, in fact, the new bishops were installed of Uijeongbu and Kwangju diocese, both examples of a"vibrant Church and always looking for more development opportunities." Meanwhile, in Seoul, “Nanum Babu “Foundation was inaugurated ", dedicated to the memory of the late Cardinal Stephen Kim Sou-hwan.

The last in order of time to be installed in his diocese was Mgr. Peter Lee Ki-heon, bishop of Uijeongbu, who on May 4 was officially ordained bishop by the Archbishop of Seoul, Card. Nicholas Cheong Jin-suk, along with the Apostolic Nuncio to Korea Mgr. Osvaldo Padilla and the Bishop of Cheju, Mgr. Peter Kang U-il. On behalf of the faithful of the diocese, Bishop Emeritus Joseph Lee Han-taek gave "the warmest of welcomes" to his successor.

The new bishop left his first words to his flock until the time when the Assembly was invited to exchange the sign of peace. At this point he told the faithful that he wished to "devote his life to the mission that comes from God.  I begin my Episcopal ministry as a new bishop, a new priest and a new man."

Some days earlier, on April 30, the same concelebrants gathered in the cathedral Limdong of Kwangju to celebrate the installation of the new Archbishop, Mgr. Hyginus Kim Hee-joong. In his homily, Mgr. Kim said: "I will do my best for this community. I hope to find the joys and sorrows of all the faithful, and above all I'm going to work with the marginalized, such as the disabled and immigrants. "

For the bishop, appointed auxiliary bishop in 2003 andCoadjutor Archbishop of the same diocese in 2009 "thanks to the pastoral work that we pursue in the farming and fishing villages that surround this city, our community has done and continues to do its part in protecting and developing the local traditional culture. "

A South Korean Catholic told AsiaNews: "These ceremonies are very important not only for the faithful of the specific diocese, but for us all. They demonstrate the vitality of our church and love and communion with the Holy See. The bishops are our gardeners, they are called to care for and cultivate the seeds of faith sown by the Gospel. "

This also includes the “Nanum Babu "Foundation, that last officially opened in Seoul on April 7 and was created in memory of the late Cardinal Stephen Kim Sou-hwan. The structure will raise funds for the poor and needy of all of Korea, regardless of creed or class. It mainly relies on donations from volunteers around the country, including non-Catholics who want to honour one of the most active figures in the fight against military dictatorship in Korea.

Card. Cheong, inaugurating the Foundation, said: "Once again, Cardinal Kim reminds us that giving is not a choice but almost a need, which manifests itself in the right people. I sincerely hope that this structure can make our society more humane, just like the great Cardinal always desired”.  

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