Seoul (Fides Service) – Greater efforts for mission, with “joy and passion” is the commitment taken by the diocese of Andong in South Korea. At a recent Mission Seminar organised for the diocesan clergy, the priests of the diocese issued a statement which read: “We want to be a Church which is open, which shares with the peopel the suffering of the present time; a Church which is for the poor and with the poor; a Church which respects life and considers precious even the smallest things. A Church which with docility obeys the will of God in sharing and service.
The clergy agreed that their statement would serve as a reference point for pastoral work in the diocese. During the Seminar the priests discussed the problems and the categories of people most in need in their respective parish areas: families of impoverished peasants, old people without assistance, social unease of young people unable to find jibs.
Bishop John Kwon Hyok-ju of Andong, approved the priorities chosen by the clergy, and he said: “Our diocese accepts the condition of the people. The Lord asks us to care for many rural families of poor peasants.” He encouraged his priest to give special attention to the “spirituality of poverty” and to “carry out their pastoral work in harmony with the community, showing the Church to be open and welcoming. PA (Fides Service 2/6/2003 EM lines 21 Words: 245)