North Korea

História, cristianismo e perseguição

The Korean peninsula juts of the Asian continent and its history goes back nearly 5,000 years. Resistance to external influences, especially of the 3 Nations that surround it, China, Japan and Russia, scored significantly these millennia. Today North Korea is also known as "the Hermit Kingdom".

In August 11, 1945, when World War II was coming to an end, the Korean peninsula was divided by an invisible thread – the parallel 38. During the 35 years earlier, North Korea had been forcibly occupied by Japan, and the majority of Koreans thought their independence, long awaited, had finally arrived. They were, however, faced with another disappointment. The nation was divided and occupied by troops of the two world superpowers: the Soviet Union in the North and the United States, in the South. Initially, the purpose of both the Soviet and American occupation in Korea was to establish a military Government in their respective areas until it was formed a GOK.

Five years later, in June 15, 1950, communist North Korean troops invaded the South aiming to "reunite the motherland." The invaders were strongly supported by Russia and China. The resulting war lasted more than three years. On July 27, 1953, the Korean war was halted by an armistice. However, the 38 parallel still dividing the Korean people until today.

South Korea – officially the Republic of Korea – established a democratic Government. North Korea already became formally known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and was conducted by a despot, Kim Il Sung. This is one of the most repressive countries in the world, not allowing at all political or religious freedom. Every year, he heads the classification of countries by persecution of doors open, as one of the Nations most intolerant to Christianity.

The Christian Church began in Korea about 120 years ago. Unlike the present day, she was tougher on North Korea than in South Korea. At the beginning of the Korean war, many Christians in the North fled south, but a large number of them were caught in the North. A frightening number of Christians in North Korea was martyred to remain firm in faith.

Some facts marked the history and still has marked these days. In 1997, seven prisoners North Korean Christians, the Hambuk province, had his jaw broken by the guards because he continued to pray and sing praises to God. Minutes later, they were shot dead. Other incidents, again on the Hambuk prison, took place in March and July 1998, where four Christians were shot dead. In an effort to force a prisoner to deny the faith in Jesus Christ, the guards were left hungry for days, and, when he refused to give in, was shot to death. Three other prisoners showed remarkable courage and peace in which referred to his faith: North Korean officers severely beat them until they were unconscious, and after the shot.

In 1999, a number of Christians were killed in public by firing squads. All were new in the faith, members of the first generation of new converts. Most of Koreans who became Christians while they were in China and were eager to share the Gospel with his people in his homeland. New converts, like these, are more vulnerable in North Korea, whereas older Christians, of second and third generations, seem to know what it means to survive.

In December 1999, two ladies were killed down publicly in Haesan, on charges of smuggling. In fact, they were faithful Christians and worked actively. During the same month, two other Christians were executed publicly, in the province of Hambuk. One of them had all broken teeth so she couldn't speak clearly. However, he testified in a courageous and preached the Gospel to the end-even when he was being dragged to the place of execution.

These harrowing testimonies are just the tip of the iceberg. At least 20 Christians were arrested, on account of their faith, in 2004. According to reliable sources, tens of thousands of Christians are currently in prison camps, where they suffer any sort of cruelty. It is also believed that North Korea has more political and religious prisoners than any other country. Although precise figures cannot be obtained, it is known that during 2005 more than 20 Christians were killed in public executions or by beatings in prison camps.

The situation of Christian workers is also cruel in neighboring China. Two South Korean pastors and two laymen were arrested in China in April 2002 because of its pastoral and humanitarian work among North Korean refugees. One of them still remains in prison.

Although the two Koreas share about 5000 years of history, they are separated from each other for fifty years. Over the years, we can see progress and growth in South Korea, while we notice a precarious economic situation in North Korea. The per capita production of North Korea is estimated to be only 6% of the per capita production of South Korea, of $ 17,300 annually.

The project Abraham was born of this desire to see a radical change in this country of great persecution. As is humanly speaking impossible any change in that nation, we understand that prayer is the key to a total transformation. Our desire is to see 100 thousand Brazilian intercessors raising an outcry every day in favor of Korea. By prayer we can invade the impossible.

Join us in this army of intercessors in favor of North Korea and that soon we can see this country be transformed by the power of the Gospel.

To him be all the glory.

-Book: "escape from North Korea," by Paul Estabrooks.