The Maronite Patriarch of Antioch, based in Lebanon, is sharing his perspectives and experience on peace-building with his brother bishops and faithful in Korea.
Cardinal Béchara Boutres Raï is in Seoul as part of the 2016 Korean Peninsula Peace-sharing Forum, underway through Saturday at the Seoul Theological Seminary.
In addition to Cardinal Raï, Cardinal Vinko Puljić, the archbishop of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Archbishop Stanislav Hoćevar of Belgrade, Auxiliary Bishop Anton Jamnik of Liubljana, Bishiop Franko Komarica of Banja Luka and others who have experienced civil wars and bloodsheds of the early 90s are part of the forum, visiting Korea to share their experiences in the troubled regions.
During his visit to the Jeoldusan Martyrs’ Shrine, Cardinal Raï and a group of bishops and priests had the chance to pray in front of the tomb of the Korean martyrs. They also prayed for peace at the chamber for Eucharistic Adoration.
Cardinal Raï showed much interest in Korea’s history of martyrdom, saying that he has been “praying to St. Andrew Kim Dae-gon for the peace of the Korean Peninsula.”
He emphasized the importance of building peace with communication, collaboration, forgiveness and mercy.
Bishop Komarica of Banja Luka mentioned the situation of Bosnia, where the Catholic population of the country has decreased to 5,000 from the original number of 250,000, and added that the people “have chosen to forgive.”
Cardinal Yeom Soo-jung, archbishop of Seoul, is welcoming the cardinals and prelates.
“By inviting religious leaders of disputed regions,” said Cardinal Yeom, “we will be able to diagnose the reality of the world that is threatened by constant disputes, and collect everyone’s thought for building peace in the world.”