Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Korean Attempt To Solve A Serious Problem

Pastors in Korea are asked to do many things but those who have special jobs in the chancery also receive requests from lay people. One priest responsible for youth work in a diocese brings to mind a problem we see quite frequently in Korea.

A woman the priest knew asked him to visit a home she had been helping because of the family situation. The father had a stroke and was not able to walk, and the mother spends her day working to support the family. The son who was in the 6th grade grammar school stopped going to school, and spends his day playing video games. The woman wanted the priest to get him to return to school.

The priest was not happy with the request. He was not a pastor, and to liberate one from their addiction is no easy task. "Father you know these problems well, just meet him once! Ha, ha" giggling, off she went.

The priest didn't know what to do. Meeting the boy once is not going to get him off playing the video games. Will his visit bring joy and hope into the life of the boy, and bring any kind of peace into the family?

Since the priest is responsible for preparing teachers for the catechetical programs in parishes, he does get requests for help dealing with the youth. "Father you have a great personality and a sunny disposition, children follow you" are words he has often heard, but, he tells them to look at his face and see how he has aged and what worry has done to him.

After much thought he decided to contact the boy and invite him to a meal. He went to a family restaurant and had the boy choose anything he wanted. The boy, "This is the first time I have been here." To the question how is the meal he was not answering. The meal was important, but he was thinking how to use the situation with his classmates as something to give him face.

The conversation at the table was difficult, everything had to be related to something in his life. During the conversation, you saw a tear drop from the boy's eyes; the priest turned his gaze towards the window as tears came into his own eyes.

The article did not mention the result of the meeting, but the problem with video games is serious. The government has banned playing video games after midnight and the government will put a 'slowdown system' that will reduce the internet speed of any underage user who plays the virtual video games over a certain period of time. Some have difficulty with this type of censorship, but when you are faced with a problem of this type, attempts of the government will be welcomed by most parents.

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