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Statuary St. Kim of Korea

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St. Kim of Korea

St Andrew Kim Taegon or Andrea Kim Taegon (1821 – 1846), was the first Korean-born Catholic priest. In the late 18th century, Roman Catholicism began to take root slowly in Korea, and was introduced by laypeople. In 1836, Korea saw its first consecrated missionaries (members of the Paris Foreign Missions Society) arrive. Kim is the patron saint for Korean clergy.

Born of yangban, Kim's parents were converts and his father was subsequently martyred for practicing Christianity, a prohibited activity in heavily Confucian Korea. After being baptized at age 15, Kim studied at a seminary in the Portuguese colony of Macau. He also spent time in study at Lolomboy, Bulacan, Philippines, where a statue of his stands in a village. He was ordained a priest in Shanghai after nine years (1844) by the French bishop Jean Joseph Ferreol. He then returned to Korea to preach and evangelize. During the Joseon Dynasty, Christianity was suppressed and many Christians were persecuted and executed. Catholics had to covertly practise their faith. Kim was one of several thousand Christians who were executed during this time. In 1846, at the age of 25, he was tortured and beheaded near Seoul on the Han River. His last words were:

" This is my last hour of life, listen to me attentively: if I have held communication with foreigners, it has been for my religion and for my God. It is for Him that I die. My immortal life is on the point of beginning. Become Christians if you wish to be happy after death, because God has eternal chastisements in store for those who have refused to know Him."

Before Ferreol, the first Bishop of Korea, died from exhaustion on the third of February, 1853, he wanted to be buried beside Kim, stating, "You will never know how sad I was to lose this young native priest. I have loved him as a father loved his son; it is a consolation for me to think of his eternal happiness."

On May 6, 1984, Pope John Paul II canonized Kim along with 102 other Korean Martyrs, including Paul Chong Hasang, during his trip to Korea. Their memorial is September 20.

The text in this box was generated from a Wikipedia article, which is released under the CC-BY-SA.

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Title: New Statue of St. Kim of Korea
Item Number: KRDEM-534
KRDEM-534: New statue of St. Kim of Korea. Available in wood, resin, marble or bronze finish. Available in sizes 3 feet in height or larger....