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Korean archbishop invites Buddhists for World Youth Day

Archbishop Peter Soon-taick Chung of Seoul prayed that the festive season helps emulate the compassion of the Buddha
Buddhist monks attend a parade to celebrate Vesak Day at the Borobudur temple in Magelang on June 4, 2023.

Buddhist monks attend a parade to celebrate Vesak Day at the Borobudur temple in Magelang on June 4, 2023. (Photo: AFP)

Published: May 09, 2024 11:58 AM GMT
Updated: May 09, 2024 12:07 PM GMT

Archbishop Peter Soon-taick Chung of Seoul has greeted Buddhists on their most important Vesak festival and invited them to the 2027 World Youth Day, which is scheduled to take place in the  South Korean capital.

Archbishop Chung’s May 9 letter greeted Buddhists on Vesak, which marks the birth anniversary of Buddha. The fest that falls on May 23 this year is also known as Buddha Jayanti and Buddha Purnima elsewhere in Asia.

The letter said that in the current climate, where this year’s Vesak slogan, “Peace of Mind, Happiness of the World,” resounds with amplified importance, there exists an urgent global imperative for peace and happiness.

“It falls upon the religious community to unite in solidarity and cooperation, dedicating themselves unwaveringly to promote the cause of peace,” the archbishop said.

The letter recalled the Seoul International Buddhist Expo in April and said it “captivated the hearts of diverse young individuals, transcending religious boundaries."

The 2027 World Youth Day is scheduled in Seoul, and  “we fervently hope it will be a joyous celebration of youthful spirit, embracing all religious beliefs."

“We extend a sincere invitation for you to join us as steadfast companions in the spiritual journey within the Buddhist community," the letter said.

World Youth Day (WYD) is a week-long global Catholic youth event organized every three years in a different country.

It includes prayers, music, and reflections. The last one was held in Lisbon, Portugal, from August 1 to 6, 2023.

The archbishop prayed that  the festive season would “emulate the boundless compassion of the Buddha and nurture the seeds of enlightenment within our own lives.”

“May the profound teachings of the Buddha shine forth upon the entire world,” he said.

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