Daejeon, South Korea, Aug 15, 2014 / 04:50 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Addressing the division between North and South Korea, Pope Francis emphasized that the two are “one family,” calling for prayers of re-unification while stressing repentance and forgiveness. “There is only one Korea, but this family is divided,” the Pope said to a large gathering of young people from across the continent.
His off-the-cuff comments came during an Aug. 15 gathering with youth of Asia at Solmoe Shrine, birthplace of the first Korean-born priest, St. Andrew Kim Taegon, who was martyred in the 1800s. The gathering was part of his Aug. 13-18 visit to South Korea, which coincides with the Sixth Asian Youth Day. After giving prepared remarks in English, Pope Francis told the young people that he wanted to speak to them spontaneously and from the heart.
Encouraged by the eager applause of those present, he set aside his text and began speaking in Italian, with the help of a translator. The Pope encouraged those gathered at the event to pray for their “brothers and sisters in the north,” asking God to guide them to unity, and leaving aside a sense of winners and losers in order to embrace one Korean family. He then paused and invited those gathered spend a moment praying in silence for unity of North and South Korea. Despite the divisions, the pontiff said, “Korea is one family” that speaks the same language.
He pointed to the Biblical account of Joseph in the book of Genesis, observing that the brothers set out to seek food during a time of famine, but instead they find a brother, whom they had earlier sold into slavery. The brothers were linked to Joseph, the Pope observed, by a common language. “Your brothers and sisters in North Korea are speaking the same language, and that gives me hope for the future of the human family,” he said. Pope Francis then discussed the parable of the Prodigal Son, which a group of young people had re-enacted earlier during the gathering. He noted that the prodigal son made the difficult decision to come back and ask forgiveness for all that he had done. The father in the parable, he added, saw the son while he was still a long way off and ran to him, embracing him before he could even apologize. This is the celebration that God loves best of all, when we return home, the Pope said. Although we might make terrible mistakes in our lives, “God will always be waiting for us to return.”
Addressing the priests present, the Holy Father asked that they might be merciful to returning sinners, in imitation of God’s constant desire to embrace us despite our sins. “We must never be afraid to return to God. And God will celebrate,” he said. “God is never tired of waiting for us. He is never tired of welcoming us back home again.” Source
Pope Francis has caused immense scandal since he took office, primarily for his refusal to “sell” Catholicism. He attacks those with a remotely “traditional leaning” at just about every opportunity, and he recently apologised to Pentecostal Protestants for the refusal of Catholics to help them spread their false beliefs, accusing these bad Catholics of having given in to temptations from the Devil. It’s beyond farcical. Now we have him in Korea, unafraid to court controversy by insisting that there is only “one Korea” – akin to a family divided. Is he keeping the best wine until last? Will he, one of these fine days, tell the world that there is only one Church, as well as one Korea, and that Church is the Catholic Church? Will he recall that this one Church also has the same language, Latin, the language of the Universal Church, as he was quick to point out that north and south Korea share the same language – a key point of unity?
Above all, will Pope Francis do his duty and exhort everyone to enter/remain in this one true Church? Will he ask himself whether now is the time to consecrate Russia, as Our Lady requested, in order to achieve world peace, or does he not connect the dots of north and south Korea… Iraq and the slaughter of Christians… the worsening crisis in the Middle East. Planting olive trees seems to have only made things worse over there, so no point in any more speeches or empty symbolism. Obey your Mother, Holy Father. Or prepare for terrible consequences, both here and hereafter.