Korea Celebrates the Discovery of the Relics of its First Martyrs

“Our Church, which grew based on the blood of martyrs, has finally found the remains of those who hold the first place in our martyrdom history,” said the Bishop of Jeonju.

Newsroom, (September 6, 2021, 14:55 PM, Gaudium Press) The remains were discovered in March during renovations of a Catholic area in Wanju County, outside Jeojun, South Korea. And after DNA testing, they have been identified as the relics of three of Korea’s oldest Catholic martyrs.

A remarkable and monumental event

Following the confirmation, Bishop John Kim Son-tae of Jeonju emphasized that “this discovery is truly a remarkable and monumental event. It is so because our Church, which grew on the blood of martyrs, has finally found the remains of the ones who hold the first place in our martyrdom history.”

Blessed Paul Yun Ji-Chung, Jaime Kwon Sang-Yeon, and Francis Yun Ji-Heon were tortured and executed during the Choson dynasty in power for 500 years. Christianity arrived in Korea around the 18th century, after Korean scholars traveled to China and met with Catholic missionaries, returning to their home country to spread the Faith.

The relics are authentic

“It is God’s will to allow us to see the remains of the first martyrs so that we can imitate their spirituality. The world we live in is sinking into darkness. For too long, our society has prioritized money and individualism over God and solidarity,” Bishop Kim said.

According to the prelate, the canonical process of studying the remains of the martyrs was completed on August 18. The relics of the three Blessed martyrs are indeed authentic. The bishop said he is hopeful that reflecting on the “spirituality of martyrdom can renew humanity and the times of today.” (EPC)

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Compiled by Ena Alfaro


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