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Pope Beatifies 124 Korean Martyrs

2014-08-16

It was one of the most anticipated events of the Pope's trip to South Korea: 124 martyrs were declared blesseds by Pope Francis, as the crowds cheered on.  

More than 1million people filled the streets of Seoul to attend the Mass and beatification of Paul Yun-Ji-Chung and another 123 martyrs who were killed during the height of the country's religious persecution in the 18th and 19th century. 

Catholicism was introduced in the country by the laity. The Pope talked about the martyrs life example. 

POPE FRANCIS
"The martyrs call out to us to put Christ first and to see all else in this world in relation to Him and His eternal Kingdom. They challenge us to think about what, if anything, we ourselves would be willing to die for.”

He also talked about helping the needy, by highlighting that the martyrs built small communities, where those in need came first. 

POPE FRANCIS
"Their example has much to say to us who live in societies where, alongside immense wealth, dire poverty is silently growing; where the cry of the poor is seldom heeded; and where Christ continues to call out to us, asking us to love and serve Him by tending to our brothers and sisters in need.”

The martyrs lived a life that didn't follow the social structures of the times, instead they showed everyone respect, by ignoring social standing.  The Pope then added that their example of charity and solidarity can still be used today, as instruments of peace. 


POPE FRANCIS
"The legacy of the martyrs can inspire all men and women of good will to work in harmony for a more just, free and reconciled society, thus contributing to peace and the protection of authentically human values in this country and in our world.”


The Pope also mentioned all the anonymous martyrs who have suffered through persecution because of their faith. 


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