WMSCOG Members Visit Korea – Special Newsweek Article
“Our expectations towards globalization beyond borders are great. It’s because we dream of a world where everyone can live equally, regardless of race, nationality, and gender. There are people who do not divide themselves from other people due to religion but tolerate everyone with the heart of Mother, and break down all borders through love. They are the members of the World Mission Society Church of God (General Pastor Kim Joo-cheol).”
This is how Jung Hyun Seo introduced the WMSCOG members in her feature religion story in Newsweek Korea, published May 16, 2016. The article titled, “We Are All Members of the Spiritual Family, Though Having Different National and Cultural Backgrounds,” is part of a three-section feature about the World Mission Society Church of God.
The article explains the beliefs of the Church of God in God the Father and God the Mother, as well as the rapid expansion of the Church of God to 2,500 regions in 175 countries. And since 2000, members from overseas churches have been visiting Korea every year. There have been more than 66 visiting group, many consisting of more than 200 or 300 members from different countries.
This past May, the Church of God in Korea received the 66th visiting group with members from the U.S., Canada, UK, Germany, France, Netherlands, Greece, Russia, Hungary, Czech Republic, and Ukraine, who stayed for eight days.
“It is unusual for a visiting group made up of people from many different countries, not from a single country like China, visits Korea simultaneously,” Seo explains in her article. “However, it is common in the Church of God; many overseas visiting groups […] visit Korea several times every year. They say they’ve found true joy and happiness in their lives through Mother’s love.”
Seo describes how the Church of God takes care and concerns for the members visiting Korea.
“Knowing how eagerly they desire to visit Korea, the Church welcomes them wholeheartedly and takes great care of them with Mother’s love above everything else. The Church looks after every detail — food, accommodation, interpretation, vehicles, guides, and everything else — to ease their jet lag and make them comfortable during their stay. The Church explained the reason for taking good care of them with the heart of Mother as follows: ‘We’re all members of the spiritual family, though having different national and cultural backgrounds.’”
During their stay, Seo describes, the members follow a well-organized program, which includes Bible studies, visits to local churches, city tours, and traditional cultural experiences, including visits to historical sites.
Even the Korean government acknowledges the great contribution to society the Church of God makes by welcoming Church of God members from overseas.
“The Overseas Visiting Groups of the Church of God are also greatly welcomed by local governments in Korea. The South Korean government has designated this year as the ‘Visit Korea Year’ for the upcoming 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, and Hwaseong City has designated this year as ‘Visit Suwon Hwaseong Fortress Year.’ As they are accelerating the attraction of foreigners’ visit to Korea, the church’s overseas visiting groups are expanding global cultural diplomacy and promoting social vitality.”
“Suwon City invited the church’s overseas visiting group to its government office building an held an official ceremony to welcome them. At the welcome ceremony, the First Deputy Mayor Kim Dong-geun said, ‘It’s very meaningful that people of different nationalities have visited our city. […] I believe the Church of God, which puts love into practice with the heart of Mother, and Suwon City will be able to work together. […] I hope you will experience the beautiful atmosphere of Korea and the true love of Mother during your stay in Korea.’”
Seo noted that “so many foreigners from all countries of the world have visited Korea as the Overseas Visiting Group members. Many of them are professional workers like university professors, judicial officers, scientists, and doctors.”
Seo met the visiting group and conveyed the determination of each of the members to continue spreading the news about God the Father and God the Mother to all of the world. “The Church of God views all people in the world as the members of one family living in a big house called Earth. In this regard, the movement to save seven billion people is to deliver eternal happiness and salvation to the family members in the global village.”