06/10/2005, 00.00
SOUTH KOREA
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Culture of life at the dinner table as well, says South Korean Bishop

by Theresa Kim Hwa-young
Mgr Boniface Choi Ki-san, chairman of the Committee for Justice and Peace, urges the faithful to "go back to a healthy lifestyle"; he accuses multinational corporations of "threatening people's health".

Seoul (AsiaNews) – In this year's Environment Day (June 5), Mgr Boniface Choi Ki-san, chairman of the Committee for Justice and Peace of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Korea, released a statement urging the faithful to go back to a culture of life. In it, he tells them to take into account the environment as an integral part of life itself.

In the message, titled Let Us Return to Healthy Food, the Bishop invites the faithful to "put a culture of life back onto our dinner tables". By the same token, he deplores the "culture of death permeating our daily lives".

To effect change, people should participate in a positive way to the Save-Our-Farm Movement and "concentrate our energies on developing and realizing Catholic ecological spirituality in order to live a simple life," he said.

The prelate points out that food is seriously contaminated by sorts of harmful elements and genetically modified organisms.

"Harmful food additions are endangering human health," he warned, "which can endanger human life and the planet".

"Large multinational corporations," he insisted, "are spreading fast-food chains all over the world. This phenomenon symbolises capitalism's penetration and threatens people's health".

"One consequence," he noted, "is the rate of obesity among youth which in South Korea has increased from 3 to 30 per cent over the last 20 years."

"Food is interwoven with the agricultural and environmental policies of the nation but also with the spiritual life of the Church and its faithful," he said. For this reason, Catholics must make an effort in "restoring and promoting the culture of life on our [dinner] tables".

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