Korea’s Bishops Want To Speed Up Canonization Process of Koreans Killed By Communists

South Korean Bishops want to advance the process toward the canonization of 81 servants of God killed by the Communists during the Korean War

Newsroom (15/06/2022 17:15, Gaudium Press) The Bishops of South Korea want to advance the process toward the canonization of 81 Korean Catholics killed by the Communists during the Korean War.

The bishops’ commission met in a special assembly last June 7 to promote the beatification and canonization of 81 servants of God.

The Korean bishops agree that the faithful who died were modern and contemporary witnesses to the faith.

Among the candidates for canonization are Bishop Francis Hong Yong-ho, 49 priests, 7 religious and 23 lay people who were tortured and killed by the Communists before and after the war between 1950 and 1953.

Bishop Hong, the first Bishop of Pyongyang, was imprisoned in 1949 by the Communists when he was only 43 years old, then disappeared. In 2014, when the Holy See accepted his canonization process, he became the first North Korean candidate for the altars.

Ordained a priest in 1933 in Japan, Bishop Hong was ordained in 1944 to take over the Apostolic Vicariate of Pyongyang.

In 2008, the Korean bishops agreed to begin the canonization process for the 81 candidates. Since the martyrs were from various dioceses, a preliminary study was begun in each diocese.

In 2013, the bishops commissioned the Archdiocese of Seoul to make the preliminary request. A few months later, a Korean government commission found that more than 1,000 Christians had been tortured and killed out of hatred for their faith by the Communists. The following year, the 81 candidates were declared servants of God. (FM)

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Compiled by Teresa Joseph

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