Mission life: THE KUKMIN DAILY

Korean and Japanese Christians: "Let’s Be Mediators for Conflict Reconciliation"

2014-10-31 16:51

The Korea-Japan Association for Friendship and Mission Cooerpation (Officer Park Dal-yong, president) held its “2014 Korea-Japan United Mission Seminar” on October 28 at the Salvation Army’s Seoul Jeil Church on Deoksugung-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul. At this seminar, organized to discuss Korea-Japan reconciliation and the mission plans of the two nations’ churches, the participants agreed that “in order to achieve reconciliation, Japan must apologize for its historical atrocities, and Christians must come forth as mediators.”

Rev. Oyama Reiji of Japan’s Bible Christian Church, said in his presentation titled “On Reconciliation,” “It is regrettable that some Japanese citizens are opposed to any apology for the Japanese military’s sex slavery system, etc., and accuse pro-apology persons of holding a “self-torturing historical view.” He pointed out, “The perpetrator easily forgets his barbaric act, but the victim remembers it always…The Japanese people have the responsibility to apologize and compensate continuously until Korea’s pain disappears.”

Linked with the movement for Japan’s apology to Korea, Rev. Oyama has played a leading role in efforts to restore relations between Korea and Japan, through such work as the reconstruction of Jeamni Church in Hwaseong, Gyeonggi-do. In 1965 he created the “Committee on Apology for the Korea Jeamni Church Incident,” carried out a fund-raising movement for the church’s reconstruction, and in 1969 handed over 10 million yen to the Korean side. Since then he has continued to advance the apology movement, organizing the “Japan-Korea Sincere Mission Cooperation Circle,” and dispatching Japanese missionaries such as Rev. Yoshida Gozo (吉田耕三, Japanese Church in Seoul) to Korea.

Reporter Lee Saya (Isaiah@kmib.co.kr), with Marion Kim (marionkkim@icloud.com)

Click here for the original article in Korean

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