Korean Christians Want ‘Unification Through Gospel’
ICC Note: ICC reps attended the event and were impressed by the zeal and courage of the North Korean defectors who made up most of the speakers at the North Korea Freedom Coalition luncheon on Friday, but this pastor’s determination and commitment was particularly admirable. North Korea routinely ranks at or near the top of the list of countries which severely persecute Christians.
By Samuel Smith
5/3/15 North Korea (Christian Post) While speaking at a North Korea Freedom Week forum on Capitol Hill Friday, the first North Korean defector to be ordained as a Methodist minister asserted that Korean Christians not only want to topple the regime of dictator Kim Jong-un but want the unification of North and South Korea to occur through the Gospel.
Kang Chul-ho, who established the first North Korean defector church congregation in South Korea and is also the vice president of the North Korean Christian Association, spoke at the forum entitled “Ending the Kim Regime’s Reign of Terror in North Korea: What Must Be Done,” and explained that the socialist regime fears the power of the North Korean defectors more than it actually fears the military strength of South Korea.
“This is our 12th meeting of North Korea Freedom Week and I come to realize more and more each time I attend these rallies, there is an important role to be played by North Korean escapees,” Kang explained. “The saying goes that Kim Jong-un in a meeting stated that he was not afraid of the 600,000 military personnel in South Korea but he was concerned about the North Korean escapees and that these escapees were a threat to the republic.”
He continued by explaining that the regime is more fearful of the those who risked their lives to leave the country in search of freedom and dignity because he knows that they eventually will come back looking to liberate their homeland, where currently, Christian worship is not tolerated.
Because Kang has been such a vocal advocate against the human rights abuses in North Korea and has continually expressed desire to see the communist government toppled, he and other leaders of North Korean defector NGOs have faced several threats to their life from the regime. He added that he even received a threat for taking part in the North Korea Freedom Week rally that was held in Washington, D.C. and New York City this week.
“Prior to my coming to the U.S. for the freedom week rally, there was on the North Korean internet, a threat that was levied on my life and many other people who would be attending the rally and they said that they would kill us,” Kang said. “I shall not be threatened or in fear and shall stand strong because I know people are out there who are strong supporters.”