Seoul - "North Korean Church in My Heart": is the name of the new prayer initiative launched in the Archdiocese of Seoul. As reported to Fides by the communications office of the local Church, the initiative is open to anyone who wants to pray for the North Korean Church.
"2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the division of Korea. Preparing to celebrate the Jubilee of Mercy, the Archdiocese of Seoul commemorates the Catholic Church in North Korea, which has lived difficult times. "The special prayer initiative was announced on November 24 with a Mass in Myeongdong cathedral.
"As Archbishop of Seoul and Apostolic Administrator of Pyongyang, I have never forgotten the Catholic Church of North Korea and the brothers and sisters who are there. They have always been in my prayers and remain in our hearts", said Cardinal Andrew Yeom Soo-jung, during the celebration of the Eucharist. "The Korean peninsula is one of the regions that need most the mercy of God. I invite everyone to join me in this prayer movement, to bear in mind the Catholic Church of North Korea, and to show our love and concern with continuous prayers", he remarked. The faithful are invited to recite the "Prayer for Peace and Reconciliation" every day.
According to official figures, after World War II and liberation from Japanese occupation, there were 57 parishes and about 5,200 Catholics in North Korea. After the Korean War, however, the Catholic Church in the North was persecuted by the government and it is now believed that there are only a few Catholics who live their faith in hiding.>>