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Active laity spurs growth of Catholicism in South Korea

CWN - April 18, 2012

The Church has seen enormous growth in South Korea in recent decades. In 1960, Christians accounted for only about 2% of the country’s population; now that figure is 30%. Of these about one-third are Catholics. In the same time period the number of Catholic priests has soared from 250 to 5,000.

Father Piero Gheddo, head of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions, reports that the success of evangelization in South Korea is attributed largely to the active participation of the laity. Catholics do not simply join a parish, he reports; they typically become involved in evangelical outreach. “The ‘passive’ Catholic is not recognized.”

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