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Gafcon leaders to review Nairobi meeting plans: Anglican Ink, September 22, 2013 September 23, 2013

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Anglican Ink.
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Archbishop Peter Jensen of Sydney has released a video stating that he and Bishop Martyn Minns will travel to Nairobi this week to review security arrangements for next month’s Gafcon conference at All Saints Cathedral. – \
Read it all at Anglican Ink.

Canterbury calls for peace in Korea: The Church of England Newspaper, May 12, 2013 p 7. May 14, 2013

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Archbishop of Canterbury, Arms Control/Defense/Peace Issues, Church of England, Church of England Newspaper, Nippon Sei Ko Kai.
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The Bishop of Brixworth with Korean and Japanese colleagues holding the communique of the 2nd Worldwide Anglican Peace Conference

The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby has added its voice to the call for peace in Korea. In a message read to the Second Worldwide Anglican Peace Conference held in Okinawa from 16 – 22 April 2013 Archbishop Welby lauded the work of the Korean and Japanese churches to foster peace in Northeast Asia.

“Your gathering has come at the most needful time,” Archbishop Welby wrote, in a statement read by his representative to the conference Bishop John Holbrook of Brixworth in the diocese of Peterborough.

“We stand with you in solidarity with the people of Korea at this time of heightened tension.  I applaud the commitment of the Anglican Communion to work with the Anglican Church of Korea in its dedicated mission towards peace in Korea.  May the initiatives you pursue contribute to the breaking down of enmities and to the establishment of a permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula.  Recent developments have shown how urgent this remains.  I pray that the Lord may grant you the courage to keep faithful to this calling.”

Approximately 80 delegates attended the conference convened jointly by the Nippon Sei Ko Kai and the Anglican church committee. In his opening address Archbishop Nathaniel Uematsu of Japan said peace will come to the region by a call for relinquishing “our own rights … And trying to protect the rights of others, or those who lack even basic rights.”

In the closing communiqué the delegates said East Asia was “hounded by the alarming threat of military escalation, the proliferation of destructive nuclear weapons, and the deadly effects of nuclear power generation.”

“We noted the danger signs are governments moving toward a war footing, they said, adding they feared the “possible revision of Japan’s skis Constitution would undermine stability in the region.”

The conference declared its “unequivocal opposition to war as a means of resolving disputes” and pledged “never again to war!”

Anglican Unscripted Episode 22, December 22, 2011 December 22, 2011

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Anglican.TV, Episcopal Church of the Sudan, Pittsburgh, Quincy.
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This last week of Advent Kevin and George bring news from Sudan, North Korea and Pittsburgh. Allan Haley brings good news from Quincy in our legal segment, And, Episode 22 includes some videos to bring a little perspective to Christmas.

UFO committee meets in Seoul: The Church of England Newspaper, December 16, 2011 p 6 December 18, 2011

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Anglican Consultative Council, Church of England Newspaper, Global South.
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UFO Committee members in Seoul

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

The representatives from the Global South coalition of Anglican provinces have boycotted the December meeting of the Inter-Anglican Standing Commission on Unity, Faith and Order.

The absence of Nigeria, Uganda, Tanzania, the Southern Cone and South East Asia and the presence of the Episcopal Church’s member at the 2 – 9 Dec 2011 UFO meeting in Seoul, South Korea will damage the commission’s credibility in a sharply divided Anglican Communion.

In a statement released at the close of the meeting, the UFO commission voiced its regret at the absence.  “Aware of our mandate to promote the deepening of communion between the churches of the Anglican Communion, we emphasised the importance of being a fully representative group, and we greatly regret that some of our members were not present,” the communiqué said.

The UFO committee, under the chairmanship of the Primate of Burundi, Archbishop Bernard Ntahoturi was tasked by Dr Rowan Williams in 2009 to promote the “deepening of Communion” with other ecclesial entities and offer advice on questions of “faith and order”.

IASCUFO carries on the work of IASCER and IATDC—the Inter-Anglican Standing Commission on Ecumenical Relations and the Inter-Anglican Theological and Doctrinal Commission.

Its third meeting focused on the preparation for the 2012 meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in New Zealand.

The communiqué stated the commission reflected “critically on the Instruments of Communion and the relationships among them”; studied the “definition and recognition of churches”; discussed ways of promoting the Anglican Covenant; assisted the Anglican Communion in its “engagement with the complex processes involved in reception,” though it did not define what this meant; and considered the “question of transitivity” in light of “regional ecumenical agreements between churches which are members of different global communions in one geographical area affect or extend to other parts of the Communions.”

The commission reviewed regional ecumenical agreements endorsed by members of the Anglican Communion and prepared draft guidelines “articulating expectations of Anglican participants in ecumenical dialogues.”

The commission’s next meeting is scheduled for September 2012.

Church call for appeasement of North Korea to prevent war: The Church of England Newspaper, Dec 3, 2010 p 7. December 8, 2010

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Arms Control/Defense/Peace Issues, Church of England Newspaper.
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Kim Jong Il

First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

Church leaders in Korea have issued a statement condemning the shelling of Yeonpyeong Island by North Korea, but have warned the US and South Korean governments not to antagonize the unstable regime of Chairman Kim Jong Il and provoke a full scale war with the North.

On Nov 23, North Korea shelled Yeonpyeong Island, located seven miles south of the Demilitarized Zone, and 50 miles from the city of Inchon.  Two civilians and two Korean marines were killed and a number of homes were destroyed.

Korea’s largest Protestant federation, representing the Anglican, Presbyterian, and Free Churches: the National Council of Churches in Korea (NCCK), on Nov 26 said it “mourns with the surviving victims and the families of those whose lives were so senselessly taken.  It deplores the North Korean military for using powerful weapons against the civilian community in the most serious incident since the signing of the Armistice in 1953.”

However, the attack came amidst joint US-South Korean war games, the NCCK noted.  It challenged the “governments of South Korea, USA and Japan to refrain from upgrading these joint military exercises under an umbrella of the USA’s respective ‘security alliances’ because they appear to have provoked North Korea and led to its strong reaction.”

The NCCK said joint military exercises with the US and Japan “served no purpose other than to escalate tensions in Korea and to threaten the peace in the whole Northeast Asian region.  The presence of a great number of nuclear weapons on land and on the surrounding seas makes Korea a tinderbox that threatens the peace of the whole world.”

The way forward through the crisis was for the Christian “ecumenical family to pray for peace in our land and to urge all governments to exercise caution, to refrain from further inflaming the political atmosphere and to exercise the maximum restraint so that reason and diplomacy can prevail over narrow self-serving military, strategic or political interests.”

However, U.S. President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak agreed last week to stage joint naval exercises as a first response and the aircraft carrier USS George Washington was dispatched to the Yellow Sea.

A foreign ministry spokesman in Pyongyang said the North had responded in “self-defense” and accused the South of “reckless military provocation” that was bringing the Korean peninsula to the “brink of war,” the official KCNA news agency said.

In March, a North Korean submarine sank a South Korean warship in the same area, killing 46 sailors, but last week’s attack was the first to involve civilian deaths since the bombing of a South Korean airliner in 1987.  Conservative political leaders in Japan and South Korea have urged their governments to take a strong line in response to this latest attack, while China has been pressed to use its influence to rein in North Korea.

However, the Rev. YJ Kim, general secretary of the NCCK, argued that a military solution would not resolve the Korean conflict.  “Faith is the foundation of peace, not force,” he said.

Bishops asks for forgiveness for Japan’s conquest of Korea: The Church of England Newspaper, July 9, 2010 p 6. July 16, 2010

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Church of England Newspaper, Nippon Sei Ko Kai.
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The Most Rev. Nathaniel Makoto Uematsu, Bishop of Hokkaido and Archbishop of Japan

First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

The Bishops of the Nippon Sei Ko Kai (NSKK), the Anglican Church in Japan, have agreed to issue a formal apology to their Korean brethren for their country’s conduct on the 100th anniversary of Japan’s annexation of Korea.

The decision came at the second joint meeting of the Korean and Japanese House of Bishops from June 28-29 on Jeju Island, South Korea.  The 11 bishops of the NSKK and the three bishops of the Anglican Church of Korea (SHK) discussed the lingering hostility many Koreans and other East Asians feel towards Japan for its conduct during the Second World War and in its annexation of Korea, Formosa and Manchuria.

The bishops agreed the Japanese church would issue an apology on the occasion of the 100th anniversary.  The Japanese bishops also agreed to make a pilgrimage in October to to South Korea’s Ganghwa Island in repentance for their country’s actions.

Japan occupied Korea in 1905 and formally annexed the province on Aug 29, 1910.  At the start of the Second World War, English missionaries in Korea were imprisoned by the Japanese and the SHK was incorporated into the NSKK.  A Japanese bishop was appointed by the government as Bishop of Chosun.

From 1945 to 1965 there was no communication between the two churches, but following the appointment of the first Korean Anglican bishop dialogue between the churches was opened, and formal relations were established in 1984.

Last year the Korean Mission Partnership, formally the Church of England Mission to Korea, reported that 19 Korean clergy were serving with the NSKK in Japan, both in expatriate Korean congregations and in Japanese Anglican congregations, helping the Japanese church respond to a growing clergy shortage.  Three Korean seminarians are currently training in Japan as well.

The first joint meeting of the House of Bishops took place in Paju, near the Demilitarized Zone with North Korea, in 2007.  The next meeting has been scheduled for October, 2011 in Okinawa.  A joint meeting of clergy and lay leaders from the two churches meet each April

Church protests over Korean river projects: The Church of England Newspaper, May 30, 2010 May 31, 2010

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Church of England Newspaper, Environment.
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First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

A massive government works programme to re-engineer South Korea’s rivers has drawn protests from the country’s Christian and Buddhist leaders.

The government’s plan to tame nature has brought together the country’s Christians and Buddhists in an unusual coalition to stop the project.  The National Council of Churches in Korea (NCCK), the Anglican Church of Korea, the Roman Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Korea, Won Buddhist officials, and the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism’s committee on the environment have banded together to protest the government’s plans, holding rallies and inter-faith prayer services to raise public awareness of the dangers the development poses to the environment.

Korean President Lee Myung-bak — the former CEO of Hyundai Construction—has proposed a “Green New Deal” public works project to jump start the economy and generate 340,000 jobs.  The Green New Deal seeks to develop solar, wind, and tidal power, increase production of hybrid vehicles, expand public transport and the nation’s rail network, and institute a national tree-planting campaign.

The centerpiece of the Green New Deal, however, is the Four Rivers Restoration Project. With an estimated price tag of 22.2 trillion won (£12.5 billion) the government plans on developing Korea’s four major river systems; the Han, Nakdong, Geum, and Youngsan.

The goal of the programme is to prevent water shortages, control flooding, and create an “eco-friendly” space for tourism and development.  It plans to construct 16 new dams, rebuild 87 old dams, reinforce 209 miles of riverbanks, and dredge 570 million cubic meters of sediment from 428 river miles. On 14 minor tributaries the government will build five new dams and refurbish nine old ones, and encase 151 miles of riverbank in concrete.

On April 26 the Catholic Church held a “Life and Peace Mass to Urge an End to the Four Major Rivers Restoration Project” at Seoul’s Myeong-dong Cathedral and on May 24, Christians joined Buddhists for a joint prayer meeting at Silleuk Temple in Yeoju, Gyeonggi Province, issuing a joint declaration calling for an end to the project.  Prayer services have also been held at the Anglican Cathedral of St. Mary the Virgin and St. Nicholas in central Seoul to raise public awareness.

South Korea’s countryside is one of the most developed in the world.  Over the past twenty five years the government has built 18,000 dams, and only the Dong river is free of any artificial barrier.  A number of projects have proven to have had long term deleterious effects upon the environment.

The Saemangeum reclamation project on the west coast of the Korean peninsula was built over the estuaries of two rivers and a large tidal flat.   The development wiped out a habitat critical to the survival of migratory birds on the Australasian flyway.  Bureaucratic wrangling over how to develop the Saemangeum has left the landfill, some six times the size of Manhattan, vacant.

The Rev. Yang Jae-seong of the Christian Environmental Solidarity Movement told the Hankyoreh newspaper the united religious front against the project “stems from the fact that the proper role of religion is to preserve and save life.”

“All of the destruction of life and the development that we have witnessed over the years requires much in the way of repentance,” Mr. Yang said, “but the religious sector has stepped forward because it can no longer stand by and watch the forceful push for the development of the four rivers.”

The Bishop-coadjutor of Seoul July 17, 2008

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Album (Photos), Anglican Church of Korea, Lambeth 2008.
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The Rt Revd Paul Keun-Sang Kim, Bishop-coadjutor of Seoul preparing to depart for Canterbury Cathedral for the bishops’ retreat at the Lambeth Conference.

The Archbishop of Korea March 28, 2008

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Album (Photos), Anglican Church of Korea.
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The Most Rev. Francis Park, Primate of the Anglican Church of Korea and Archbishop of Seoul.

Christians flock to clean up spill: CEN 1.22.08 January 23, 2008

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Church of England Newspaper, Disaster Relief.
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CHRISTIAN leaders in Korea have stepped in to assist in the clean up after the country’s largest oil spill.

The National Council of Churches in Korea, led by the Anglican Archbishop of Seoul, the Most Rev Francis Park, has joined forces with other Christian groups and NGOs and mobilised volunteers to help clean up the spill along the Taean Peninsula, 50 miles southwest of Seoul.

Read it all in The Church of England Newspaper.

Christians flock to clean up spill

Anglican leaders hail Korean talks : CEN 11.20.07 November 20, 2007

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Arms Control/Defense/Peace Issues, Church of England Newspaper, Church of Ireland.
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FORGIVENESS is the prerequisite for peace, Lord Eames told the Towards Peace in Korea (TOPIK) conference this week. Over 150 church leaders gathered in Paju, South Korea, at the invitation of the Anglican Church of Korea to lend the Church’s moral support to peace and reunification on the Korean peninsula.

The conference host, Archbishop Francis Park told participants that included US Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and bishops and church leaders from across the Communion that the church was “called to be apostles of peace in a world where discord and conflict are prevalent.”

Read it all in The Church of England Newspaper.

Anglican leaders hail Korean talks

Signs of an end to the Korean stalemate: CEN 8.31.07 August 30, 2007

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Korea, Arms Control/Defense/Peace Issues, Church of England Newspaper.
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THERE ARE signs that the 54-year old stalemate between North and South Korea may be coming to an end, the CMS’ Head of Communications John Martin stated following a visit to the peninsula.

Martin noted that there were ‘encouraging signs’ in the political relations between the two countries, officially still at war, including a scheduled visit by South Korean President Roh Moo-Hyun to Pyongyang on Oct 2-4, and the July decision by the North in July to close its Yongbyon nuclear reactor project.

Read it all in The Church of England Newspaper

Signs of an end to the Korean stalemate