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South Korean president seeks Pope’s help in resolving Korean crisis

May 30, 2017

Two weeks after taking office, President Moon Jae-in of South Korea sent a prelate as his special envoy to the Vatican to seek Pope Francis’s help in resolving tensions with North Korea.

The prelate, Archbishop Hyginus Kim Hee-jong of Gwangju, met with the Vatican’s Secretary of State on May 23 and with Pope Francis on May 24, according to one of South Korea’s leading newspapers.

Archbishop Kim said that he asked the Pope to “offer blessings for the new president to complete his missions and a prayer for improvement of our strained inter-Korean relations.”

The Pope gave the prelate a Rosary to take to President Moon and reportedly said, “The more difficult the situation, the more it should be resolved through dialogue rather than arms.”

President Moon is a Catholic human rights attorney. South Korea, a nation of 50.9 million, is 24% Protestant, 8% Catholic, and 24% Buddhist, with 43% professing no religion.

 
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