Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
Tight security planned for pope's Korea visit
Around one million expected to attend beatification ceremony
Gwanghwamun Square, Seoul. Picture: Korea Tourism Organization
- Jeong Hunny for Korea Herald
- August 4, 2014
A tight security cordon will be set up in downtown Seoul later this month when Pope Francis is scheduled to beatify more than 100 martyrs at a well-attended ceremony, police said Sunday.
The pope will recognize 124 martyrs at Gwanghwamun Square on Aug. 16 as “blessed” members of the Catholic Church ― part of a process also known as beatification.
Authorities will set up a 4,500-meter cordon around Gwanghwamun Square to strengthen security at the event. About 1 million are expected to attend the beatification. Gwanghwamun Square is also only 2 kilometers from Cheong Wa Dae, the presidential office.
Police officers and volunteers will stand guard at intermittent gates along the barricade with metal detectors. Only about 200,000 preregistered Catholics and government authorities will be allowed inside the security wall.
The ceremony is a part of the pope’s five-day visit to South Korea. He arrives on Aug. 14.
Pope Francis will meet President Park Geun-hye on his first day. He will also meet families of the victims of the April ferry disaster and former sex slaves of the Japanese military during World War II.
Police forces nationwide will be put on level-1 emergency alert throughout the pope’s visit.
Level-1 alerts are declared during emergencies or national events such as mass nationwide protests, presidential elections or visits by foreign dignitaries. It is the highest alert status for the national police. Only martial law is considered more serious.
This is the third papal visit to Korea in the past 30 years. Police will be on edge to not repeat a security fiasco from 1984 when the late Pope John Paul II visited Korea.
A college student surnamed Lee fired a toy gun at the pope’s convoy, sparking nearby police to fire warning shots at the 23-year-old. There were no casualties from the incident.
Full Story: Police to set up barricade for pope’s visit
Source: Korea Herald