Seoul (Fides Service) – “The future of the family is the future of the Church” was the theme of a symposium held last week at the auditorium adjoining Myongdong Catholic Cathedral in Seoul. The symposium was organised by the Institute for Pastoral Care affiliated with the Conference of Catholic Bishops of Korea.
The first conference was given by Ms Gwak Bae-hee, directress of the Korea Legal Aid Centre Family Relations who reflected on the crisis experienced by the family today as it is seen from the increasing number of divorces and the collapse of the traditional family system.
Father Peter Park Hyun-min said that the increase in the number of marriages that end with divorce is due to “immaturity and interior unbalance of the person”. Father Casimir Song Yul sup, Secretary General of Korean Bishops’ Conference, who gave the second conference, suggested ways to re-launch family pastoral care: offer systematic education to families; give families a major role in pastoral work in the local communities.
“Marriage and the family are a project and a blessing from God. The first duty of the Christian husband and wife is to bear witness to the indissolubility of marriage and the infinite value of fidelity” said Father Peter Lee Ki-heon, chairman of the Commission for Family Pastoral Care of the Bishops’ Conference.
In a message to the Symposium Cardinal Lopez Trujillo, President of the Pontifical Council for the Family, encouraged the participants reminding them that “the family based on matrimony is Good News which Christ gives to us and it must be the heart of new evangelisation”. PA (Fides Service 16/7/2003 EM lines 26 Words: 271)