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2013-08-19

ASIA/SOUTH KOREA - The Archbishop of Seoul: "Let us entrust to Mary the reconciliation between the Koreas"

Seoul (Agenzia Fides) - The Virgin Mary is the "Mother of reconciliation between North Korea and South Korea" and we entrust her "the promotion of peace on the Korean peninsula": So says an official message of the Archbishop of Seoul, His Exc. Mgr. Andrew Yeom Soo-jung, who once again addressed the urgency of reconciliation between the Koreas. The Archbishop's message comes at a time when the two Koreas are trying to restart the so-called "family reunification" (between members of families divided by the border), while the ongoing joint military exercises between the U.S. and South Korea, historic allies, fuel tensions.
Taking the cue from two events, one civilian (the independence of South Korea) and one religious (the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary) the Archbishop, in a message sent to Fides Agency, recalls the liberation of Korea from Japanese imperialism (August 1945) stating that "the Korean Catholic Church considers it as a gift of the Virgin Mary". The Virgin, who already more than 60 years ago was the "mother of liberation", for the Korean people, today "is the mother of reconciliation" and "with her maternal charity, she takes cares of the brethren of her Son, who still wander on earth and in places surrounded by dangers and difficulties".
Citing the encyclical "Pacem in Terris", the Archbishop’s message reflects on today's situation of the Korean peninsula, 60 years after the end of the war between North and South Korea: "The Korean peninsula is still facing serious conflict and division between North and South Korea. Reconciliation between North and South Korea - he says - is not just a matter of the peninsula, but also the path for peace in the world. That is why we should set aside the past and look towards a bright future of hope".
The text sent to Fides deal with the core of the reunification of divided families: "Because of the division of North and South Korea, too many people have died and many families are separated. I would like to ask the Korean government to begin to solve the most urgent problems: the confirmation of the survival of members of families divided by the border between North and South Korea, the modalities of exchange of letters and reunifications. I pray that wiser policies are applied according to criteria of humanity and that dialogues may resume until the day when North and South Korea can open their hearts to each other".
Mgr. Andrew Yeom Soo-jung reiterates that "for us Christians, the first thing is to pray. Prayers help us to pay attention to the Word of God, and help us to become the instrument of his peace. When we are able to put aside all divisions and hatred, we will be able to begin a bright future of love and peace". (PA) (Agenzia Fides 19/08/2013)

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