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St Andrew Kim Taegon, Paul Chong Hasang, and companions

The Korean martyrs are celebrated today 20 September: they are mostly lay men and women: some married, some not; some old, some young, some even children.

“The Korean Church is unique because it was founded entirely by laypeople. This fledgling Church, so young and yet so strong in faith, withstood wave after wave of fierce persecution. Thus, in less than a century, it could boast of 10,000 martyrs. The death of these many martyrs became the leaven of the Church and led to today’s splendid flowering of the Church in Korea. Even today their undying spirit sustains the Christians of the Church of Silence in the north of this tragically divided land.”

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