Welcoming Strangers

This talk was presented to the Virtual Christian Forum for Reconciliation in Northeast Asia by Bishop Peter Kang U-il, D.D. (Bishop of Jeju Diocese). The Virtual Forum took place from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm KST Friday, June 5, 2020, with more than 150 participants from Northeast Asia and beyond.

“In Christ, God was reconciling the world to himself … and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us” 2 Corinthians 5:19

The Ministry of Reconciliation in a Time of Xenophobia, Rising hostility and COVID-19

This talk was presented to the Virtual Christian Forum for Reconciliation in Northeast Asia by Dr. Richard Hays (George Washington Ivey Professor Emeritus of New Testament, Duke Divinity School). The Virtual Forum took place from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm KST Friday, June 5, 2020, with more than 150 participants from Northeast Asia and beyond.

“In Christ, God was reconciling the world to himself … and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us” 2 Corinthians 5:19

Jeju 2019 on China Christian Daily

“The Forum started with worship and devotionals in the morning and ended with Taizé worship in the evening.  The hope was that misunderstanding and divisions could be eliminated when Christians from different countries and cultures worshiped, praised, communicated with each other, and reflected on Jesus Christ’s spirit of “reconciliation” together. Activities included plenary and workshops sessions.” (continue reading…)

Religious of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Reconciliation

RSCJ International News

“Over five days, forum participants explored a Scriptural vision of peace and reconciliation, went on pilgrimage into the Jeju context, lamented and bore witness to hope, recognized the contextual challenges of a ministry of reconciliation in Northeast Asia, and sought new places for collaboration and partnership.” (continue reading…)

The Virtual Christian Forum for Reconciliation in Northeast Asia 2020

Greetings in the name our Lord who is the source of all comfort.
May the grace of God keep you safe in this pandemic!

The Forum this year has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the midst of a great loss, however, we will have a Virtual Forum on Friday, June 5 and you are cordially invited. Greg Jones, Dean of Duke Divinity School extends his warm welcome:

https://divinity.capture.duke.edu/Panopto/Pages/Viewer.aspx?id=edf332e3-c5d0-4e1c-be15-ab8e011fc528

The Collaboration Council has decided to host a half-day Virtual Forum for those who long to engage with others. Please refer to the following information and contact council members for questions or suggestions.

Day: Friday, June 5, 2020
Time: 8:00 am to 1:00 pm Seoul/Tokyo (7 am HK, China, Taiwan, 7 pm ET in the US on Thursday, June 4)

8:00 Opening / Welcome (Jongho, Chris)
8:30 Opening Worship (Team members: Jongdae, Grace, Esther, and SeongHan)
8:45 Richard Hays – “The Ministry of Reconciliation in a Time of Xenophobia, Rising hostility, and COVID-19.”
9:30 Responses (Alex Tso, and Grace Choi/Jongdae Kim)
9:50 Q&A with the Speaker and Panelists
10:10 Break
10:30 Joy Yoon (Ministry of Reconciliation: Message of Hope and Comfort in the DPRK)
11:00 Country group meeting
12:10 Report from Country group
12:30 Closing Worship (Bs. Peter Kang)
12:50 Closing Wrap Up

Please remember the Virtual Forum in your prayers.

I look forward to seeing you online on June 5.

Grace and Peace,

Jongho Kim
Coordinator, Northeast Asia Reconciliation Initiative

Prayer Request and Guidelines regarding Jeju Forum 2020

At this time of grave concern over the health threats, we would like to inform and invite you to pray together.

When there is a pandemic, people are naturally alarmed and swayed by panic, and even hatred. They will look for scapegoats and xenophobia spreads with the disease. Now the global health is at risk due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and the 2020 Christian Forum for Reconciliation in Northeast Asia is also watching the whole situation closely.

In China, thankfully, the spread is more under control and there are less confirmed patients each day. In South Korea, however, there is an uncontrollable outbreak, which is largely due to an extreme sectarian group called New Heaven and Earth. There are more than 300,000 followers in the group, and they have been notoriously deceptive in their outreach. They have ardent members called “harvesters” and they hide their identity and infiltrate into regular churches, and due to this secretive nature of their evangelistic tactic, they are not willing to share their list of affected patients. Now there are growing anger and hatred towards them among the public and Christians. With the pandemic, hatred grows as well.

In this kairos of widening division and growing hatred, we are preparing for the Reconciliation Forum. We still don’t know how furthermore the extent of the disease will affect us. We have no room for either optimism or pessimism at present, but we turn to God for his mercy and healing.

Let us pray for a speedy control of this virus outbreak. Pray for the Forum would be able to welcome participants from each country invited. Pray for the fearful people to realize their limits and come to a humble dependence on God. Here are some of the guidelines for the invited participants:

1. There is no plan to cancel or postpone the Forum as of now. However, we postpone the registration deadline to the end of March, so please register now and make your payment at the end of March. You can book your flights after that. In case the Forum is canceled or your trip is not allowed due to this outbreak after that, the registration fee will be refunded to you.

2. Please pray regularly for the virus outbreak to be under control and for the Forum to be hosted as planned. Pray that the travel bans or advisories to be lifted for us to travel freely.

It is a great joy and honor to walk with all of you in this journey of standing in the gap, and look forward to welcoming you to the Forum in June.