Thursday, January 5, 2017

"Like a Ship Battered by Wind"

A professor emeritus, a man active in diocesan work writes in the Catholic Times on the high waves buffeting the ship of state and the society in which we live.

Comparing our times to persons on a battered ship is a good analogy for the times. In Korea the captain seemed to have turned over the ship to a personal friend; the passengers, hearing of the news, were overcome with anger and with candles in their hands, wanted the captain and supporters removed.

With the coming of the new year, we have the impeachment of the president, political turmoil, economic depression, fear of earthquakes, nuclear fear from the North, US THAAD missile system placement in Korea, fear of what president Trump will mean for Korea, and the population problem.

In the coming year, the number of those over 65 years of age will be larger than those under 14. The professor emeritus says this is not seen as a problem by many. He quotes a population expert who says that on the Richter scale this would be an equivalent reading of 9.0: a catastrophe in economics, politics, and society.

This aging population and drop in the birth rate will not only impact society but also the Church: schools will close, people fired, jobs harder to find,  production and consumption in the country restricted.

The Korean Institute of Health and Social Affairs has reported that 8 out of 10 students from 14 to 18 years of age do not think we have a just society. Collusion between Business and Government, corruption, and conflict between management and workers will continue to increase.

Choi Soon-sil Gate is far from settled. Her daughter entered a prestigious college and was later expelled because of allegations she received special treatment. Incidents of this type give credence to an unjust society. One questionnaire that was mentioned showed that half of the respondents do not see the children bettering their lives in our present society. This makes a desire for a family all the more difficult for the young.

He concludes the article by lamenting the blind spot many of the Catholics have on matters of justice and peace. We have on many different occasion received  communications from the Bishops, heard parish sermons but the parishioners have little interest.   More lamentable, however, we hear talks on justice and peace and label it leftist and Communistic.  He hopes the new year will see a change  and find the Catholics as leaders in the movement for a better society.

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