신학과 실천, 30 July 2015, Vol.45, pp.47-74
The veneration of the saints is related to the cult of the dead. It initially took the form of praise and imitation of the deceased holy one, and involved as well, gatherings of celebration and prayer at the place of burial. The cult of the saints began in the early church with the commemoration(memoria) of the victims of persecution. So the primitive Christians linked witness to the centrality of the cross in which human was able to partake the passion of Christ. Already at the death of the first martyr in the New Testament, Stephen, the martyr’s prayer for his persecutors echoes the prayer of Jesus on the cross for those who knew not what they were about. In the primitive believers had a strong conviction that saints could intercede with Christ for them. In the ancient world, in which Christianity began, tombs were places of contact between humans and the gods. The tomb represented a home for the dead, a place to be visited by survivors. Libations were poured out upon the tomb, and funerary feasts (refrigerium) were celebrated near it, especially on the birthday of the deceased. Among the Jews it was customary to give special honor to the tombs of the patriarchs; among the pagans, to the tombs of dead heroes. In like manner, the early Christians held the tomb to be the privileged place of the saint. And like the Greek hero, the saint was considered to be an intercessor who functioned as an intermediary between this world and the next. The Korean Protestant Churches, however, strongly resist to bring the cult of the saints in their sanctoral cycle. Why not? The cult of saints, on behalf of perspective of the Korean Protestant churches, seems to be involved with the issue of ancestor worship which causes significant conflicts between Korean Catholic Church and Protestant Church, and even among non-believers. The first thing the Korean pastors and scholars discussed was idolatry which for Christians has been the main obstacle to the practice of ancestor worship. In terms of the Judeo-Christian perspective and belief, ancestor worship or idol worship is contrary to the first and second commandments of God. Because the Korean Christians believe in monotheism, they cannot accept the idol worship. Ancestor worship is a part of cultural heritage that is a precious gift of God to the Korean people. However, as a Korean Protestant Christian, it is not easy to say that traditional way of observing ancestor worship can be an acceptable and applicable practice from a Korean Christian perspective. As an inculturated practice of veneration of the saint, the Korean Protestant Church employed its own way of observing veneration of the ancestors, named Chumo-Shik.
All Saints Service ; Chumo-Shik ; Inculturation ; Liturgy for the Dead ; Veneration
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