Churches have become South Korea’s coronavirus battleground
In South Korea, Christians find themselves at the center of pandemic controversy after places of worship and Christian communities were blamed by President Moon Jae-in for two waves of coronavirus infections.
The ensuing dispute has mixed religion, epidemiology and politics in a nation where more than 1 in 4 people identify as Christian and where those who do often lean conservative, putting them at odds with Moon’s center-left government.
As a result of the controversy, Seog’s Gyesan Jeil Church — in Incheon city, southwest of the capital, Seoul — was forced to switch to largely online services last month.
And the pastor is not happy.
“Except for a few rule-breakers, most churches, including ours, have been carefully observing health rules at excruciating emotional and financial cost,” he said in an interview. “Enforcing these restrictions unilaterally upon all Protestant churches, this is nothing short of communism.”
In February, a fringe religious group, Shincheonji Church of Jesus, sparked South Korea’s earliest …continued .
[Source: Washington Post]