CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 15 June 2019

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Korean Missionary Society signs with Hong Kong

HONG KONG (SE): An agreement was signed between the Hong Kong diocese and the Korean Missionary Society on September 12 facilitating the congregation in sending missionaries to Hong Kong and accepting duties at the discretion of the diocesan authorities.

Father Andrew Kim Young-jae, the secretary general of the Korean Missionary Society, signed the cooperation agreement at the Diocese Centre on September 12.

The contract took effect in September and is to be renewed after five years.

The Korean Missionary Society has been sending personnel to Hong Kong since 1996 and conducted negotiations with the Hong Kong diocese through the Catholic Foreign Mission Society of America (Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers).

Father Kim told the Kung Kao Po that his congregation has been accepting assignments in Hong Kong for some time, but the agreement is a reaffirmation of the contribution it has made to the life of the Church in Hong Kong.

Two priests have already been sent from the society to Hong Kong. Father Paul Kim Dong Ju, who has been in the city for 19 years and is currently at St. Jude’s parish in North Point, will take a sabbatical in November and will be away for 12 months.

Father Isaac Noh Hyunchul is currently studying Cantonese at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and will be receive an assignment when he graduates in December.

Father Kim said that his society needs to make arrangements about sending missionaries to Hong Kong after looking at its manpower. He explained the mission in Korea is thriving, as over 900, including priests, sisters and lay people, have been sent out overseas from the Church in Korea.

He explained that in the past, the Korean Church had been inward looking, focussed primarily on the needs of its own people. But as attitudes have broadened, there are now more people willing to venture overseas.

He called it a trend, as priests, sisters and lay people have been encouraged to go overseas as missionaries by various dioceses and congregations.

The secretary general of the Korean Missionary Society was elected in 2013, but had been in Hong Kong from 2000 to 2008, before returning to Korea as part of the formation staff at the seminary.

The Korean Missionary Society was set up in 1975. It now has 70 members, with 57 of them serving in nine countries and regions, including Papua New Guinea, the first destination; Taiwan, Cambodia and Thailand.

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