[KS] most Christian city in Asia
hhu at fulbright.or.kr
Sun Dec 7 05:28:41 EST 2003
Catholics may or may not be more liberal than Protestants now, as indicated in the book Lucas refers to, but in the 1950's the Catholics in our high school class at Seoul Foreign School were forbidden to attend events that took place in Seoul Union Church, and even in the 1980's it was considered quite daring when a Catholic priest in Arizona allowed a few of us Presbyterians to receive mass. The Korean side is just as bad (though I am not at all sure they learned it from the missionaries), and you don't even have to look as far as the Catholic-Protestant divide. One of the rueful comments of older missionaries which I remember, also from the 1950's, was that in Korea there were Jesus Presbyterians and Christ Presbyterians, and Jesus wouldn't talk to Christ.
Horace H. Underwood
---------- Original Message ----------------------------------
From: Lucas Husgen <lhusgen at kirogi.demon.nl>
Reply-To: Korean Studies Discussion List <Koreanstudies at koreaweb.ws>
Date: Sat, 06 Dec 2003 11:25:52 +0100
>All of this may have to do with the Protestant conception of themselves as
>representing the true essence of Christianity and therefore being more
>rightly called Christians, whereas the name of Catholicism ("the
>allencompassing") in their mind would point to the institutional aspect of
>Christianity, and therefore be a token of corruption of original values.
>I experienced the fierceness of Korean Christians at Kangnung Tanoje once,
>in their protesting of this heathen festival: it hinted that they would
>probably take the same stance towards Catholicism.
>Generally, a recent book by Robert Greeley, 'Catholic Imagination', on the
>basis of sociological surveys shows that Catholics are generally of a more
>liberal mindset than Protestants.
>So I wonder: isn't it also true for a fact that Koreans are much more
>taking to Buddhism again these days? Might they not have become wary of
>the strictness, involved with hardline Protestant communities?
>Still, I do remember a Seoulite travel group (at least, they had a Seoul
>accent) at Hyangiram, poking fun at the place.
>On Fri, 05 Dec 2003 22:34:59 -0600, Richard Miller <rcmiller at wisc.edu>
>> It absolutely is not a Korean-only phenomenon. Indonesia, for example,
>> officially recognizes "five religions:" Christian, Catholic, Muslim,
>> and Buddhist. I believe that this usage (Christian vs. Catholic) comes
>> Dutch practice during the colonial period. It's not really a
>> "mistranslation," I don't think, although it certainly doesn't line up
>> mainstream US practice.
>> Richard Miller
>> UW-Madison School of Music
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: Koreanstudies-bounces at koreaweb.ws
>>> [mailto:Koreanstudies-bounces at koreaweb.ws]On Behalf Of
>>> sumnom at u.washington.edu
>>> Sent: Friday, December 05, 2003 9:21 PM
>>> To: Korean Studies Discussion List
>>> Subject: Re: [KS] most Christian city in Asia
>>> I do not believe this is only a Korean phenomenon. While teaching
>>> World Regional Geography courses at the University of Kentucky in
>>> the early 1990's, I often read undergraduate essays with
>>> sentences like, "Ireland is primarily Catholic but there are some
>>> Christians too." At first I thought this was an amusing error
>>> until I found out that some of the churches these students were
>>> attending did not consider Catholics to be Christians. They may
>>> have called them something akin to papists, idolators, or Mother
>>> Mary cultists, but they were not willing to acknowledge them as
>>> Christians. I saw some tracts that went so far as to equate the
>>> pope with Satan.
>>> I do not know what the official doctrinal stances are of the
>>> various protestant churches are in Korea in relation to this
>>> issue but I would guess there might be more to this question than
>>> a simple mistranslation.
>>> Joshua Van Lieu
>There's nothing like the old songs, but what's the good if you can't
>remember them. Mem. Mem. Memory.
>William H. Gass
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