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Korean Presbyterian Churches issue declaration on Korean peninsula

NCKPC statement expresses hope for ‘complete reconciliation’

by Gregg Brekke | Presbyterian News Service

LOUISVILLE — The National Caucus of Korean Presbyterian Churches (NCKPC) today issued a declaration regarding the situation and ongoing negotiations regarding peace and reunification on the Korean Peninsula.

Formulated at its mid-May gathering and released the day after the historic summit between U.S. and North Korean leaders, the declaration affirms the group’s call to reconciliation, peace, coexistence, human rights and unification.

On June 8, Stated Clerk of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) General Assembly the Rev. J. Herbert Nelson, II issued a statement in anticipation of the bilateral summit. Affirming previous PC(USA) commitments to peace on the Korean Peninsula, Nelson said, “We lift our hearts in prayer for the success of this meeting, and the negotiations that emerge from it, remembering that there are literally millions of Koreans in the diaspora who long for genuine peace, and, for many, the chance to be reunited with family members long-separated by this conflict.”

The full statement of the NCKPC is below and can be downloaded at this link.

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OUR DECLARATION
Our Resolution Towards Reconciliation, Peace, and Unification of Korean Peninsular

PREAMBLE

National Caucus of Korean Presbyterian Churches (NCKPC) in PCUSA held its 47th Annual Assembly and National Convention in San Diego from May 15 to 18, 2018, under the theme, “NCKPC for such a time as this.”

NCKPC resolved to manifest its will for continuous prayer and aspiration as it faces a series of developments in and outside the Korean peninsula, and anticipate the justification of

reconciliation and the day of peaceful reunification.

Hereby, the 400 Korean churches and the members of NCKPC announce “Our Declaration” in accordance with the Reformed faith as follows:

SEC. 1 (South-North Reconciliation)

“For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us.” (Ephesians 2:14)

In a series of historical trends ranging from inter-Korean reconciliation, inter-Korean inviolability, the 1992 Inter-Korean Basic Agreement that specifies inter-Korean exchanges and cooperation, the 10.4 Inter-Korean Summit Declaration in 2007 and the recent Panmunjom Declaration, we urge the two Koreas to achieve reconciliation and unification based on the redemptive ministry of the cross by Jesus Christ.

SEC. 2 (Establishment of a South-North Peace System)

“Peace be with you.” (John 20:21)

We hope that the threat of war completely disappears on the Korean peninsula and that it will contribute to the peace and prosperity of Northeast Asia and the Asia – Pacific region, and also to the world peace, through the historical task of denuclearization and peaceful reunification.

SEC. 3 (Coexistence of North and South Korea)

“Through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.” (Colossians 1:20)

We hope that all the inhabitants of both North and South Korea will go beyond the walls of mutual conflict and open up a new horizon of peace, flowing like a river of justice, just as the sacrifice of Jesus Christ has brought reconciliation and peace with God.

SEC. 4 (Human Rights)

“He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free,” (Luke 4:18)

Jesus Christ proclaimed the realization of fundamental human rights for the wounded people who were captivated and blinded by the goal of the kingdom of God.

We are eager to improve human rights violations such as detention and torture of North Korean residents by arbitrary arrest of the North Korean authorities, forced labor in political camps, and public executions. We urge the Chinese authorities to immediately stop the repatriation of North Korean defectors to the North. We urge the entire church to pray and work together to ensure that Chinese authorities grant legal refugee status to North Korean defectors living in China.

SEC. 5 (Vision for Unification)

“and might reconcile both groups to God in one body through the cross, thus putting to death that hostility through it.” (Ephesians 2:16)

Jesus Christ has made all the divisions together and has reconciled everything to himself. We hope that the two Koreas will exert their full power in the work of achieving complete reconciliation, peace, and new history by the power of the Holy Spirit in Jesus Christ.

– Rev. David Won, NCKPC Moderator June 12, 2018


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