Korean Catholics are waiting for Pope Francis' visit to Korea from August 14th to 18th at the invitation of President Park and the Catholic Church of Korea. Preparations have continued for some time, and will include printing books, introducing the Catholics to the lives of the 124 martyrs who will be beatified, pilgrimages to the many shrines, lectures and programs to help the Catholics to grow in their faith life, using the visit of the Pope as the catalyst. Reports say the Catholics of North Korea have been invited to come to Korea for the Mass in the Cathedral Church of Seoul before the pope leaves Korea.They have expressed interest.
Cardinal Yeom recently did visit
the industrial complex in North Korea for a one-day visit. After the
visit, Cardinal Yeom said: "The distance between Seoul and the Kaesong
Industrial Park is slightly over 60km. I thought about how we live
thinking this short distance is so far."
the Peace Weekly there is an article about Fr. Cha Dong-yeop of the Future Pastoral Institute
of Incheon on his program on Peace TV. He introduces the viewing
audience to ten key works, he says, helps to understand Pope Francis. The only
way most of the Korean Catholics hear what the Pope has to say is in
translation. The opportunities of coming in contact with the teaching
and values that the pope is expressing are not easily attained by the
Fr. Cha has gone through the books written
by the pope, his sermons and news reports about the pope, and has made a list of 10
keywords which he feels gives a good idea of the emphasis that the Pope
is showing in what he says and does. Fr. Cha says, there is much
written on the theological and moral position of the pope but not the pastoral approach. They are also sign posts for our own spiritual life.
Happiness * Mercy * Poverty * Teaching on Love * Pope's Name, Francis
* His grandmother's legacy * The pope's prayer * What can be changed
and what can't be changed * Communication * A Church without walls.
These are the ten ways Fr. Cha wants to express the main points of
Pope Francis' pastoral concerns. The only one that may be difficult to
understand would be the legacy of his grandmother: "A burial gown
doesn't need pockets." Another of the many:"Celebrate each Mass as if
it were your first and last."
Father Cha uses these keywords on the TV program as one way to prepare the
Catholics in appreciating the message of Pope Francis and understanding his popularity both within and outside the Church. Fr. Cha will
eventually write a book with the 10 keywords explained.