Today, voters elected a new presidential candidate in South Korea: Moon Jae-in. This marks the end of a decade of conservative party rule, dominated by scandal and tensions on the peninsula.
Jae-in represents the center-left Democratic Party. Before a large crowd, he stated: “I will work toward putting our country back on its feet and helping all of you realize your dreams, as Koreans.”
His taking office comes at an uncertain time with increased military frustrations with North Korea.
By the grace of God, South Korea has a large Christian population and is home to the world’s largest Pentecostal church, Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul.
In 1900, only 1% of the country’s population was Christian, but through missionary efforts, Christianity has grown rapidly since then. Now, roughly 3-in-10 South Koreans are Christians. South Korea is the world’s second largest missionary-sending nation. South Korea also has low levels of government restrictions on religion and social hostilities toward or among religious groups.
Believers to the north do not share such freedom; Christians in North Korea face extreme persecution. Sitting at #1 on the World Watch List, Christians endure harsh oppression for their faith in Jesus. Believers are arrested, imprisoned tortured or killed. Anyone who goes against worshiping the ruling Kim family could be sent to work in hard labor camps.
This shift in leadership in South Korea will affect both believers in South Korea and its relations with North Korea.
Will you please pray for this new leadership shift alongside us?
- Pray that Moon Jae-in will lead in a way that allows believers to gather in South Korea.
- Pray that South Koreans would continue to have a heart for reaching those to the north of them.
- Pray that this leadership shift will hopefully ease tensions with North Korea. With a renewed relationship, may the gospel more readily advance across the border and bring many to saving faith.
- Pray that Jae-in would bring about peace, not turmoil, to this region.
- Just as South Korea was closed to the gospel in 1900, we pray for the gospel to radically change the roots within North Korea, and for there to be tremendous fruit produced over the next decade.