Pope Francis in Korea


Today marks my second week in Korea. Since I arrived I have met many friends, all eager to show me around Korea and to chat up a storm. This past week I have spent my time settling into the dormitory at Yonsei University and sorting out things for my semester here. As such, I hadn’t found the time to write much but I have a long, long list of topics to write about already.

I’m a little late in posting about this, so I extend my apologies, but it still sticks out in my vividly in my mind. The Pope visiting Korea from August 13th-18th.

What struck me the most was the massive number of people who came out just to get a glimpse of him. Korea, as you may already know, is a country of three main religious tenets: Christianity, Buddhism, and Korean Confucianism. Out of 25 million people polled in a recent census, only 53% of Koreans professed to having a religion. I didn’t really know what to expect of the Pope coming here for a conference. Would they openly welcome him or would it simply be as if another celebrity came? But I was quick to find out.

The Pope delivered a speech at the palace in Gwanghwamun and this was the picture that greeted us:

Pope in Gwanghwamun

So. Many. People. It was quite surprising to me, but I guess I shouldn’t have been surprise. I wasn’t in Gwanghwamun that day to see the Pope. I was actually exploring around Seoul with one of my guest-mates from my guesthouse when we ran into the huge crowd. It was quite a sight to behold. The milling people and squadrons of police. The nearby subway stop even shut down for the Pope.

I never intended to see the Pope, but it was nice to see people come out to hear what he had to say.

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About CultureQuote - Dani

An engineering and language student at Kansas State University, I strongly believe that language learning should be free and that the only way to help inform people of cultural barriers is to openly provide materials and resources to explore.

One thought on “Pope Francis in Korea

  1. Trust me. Just a little bit of people were going to see the pope. Most of people were going to see the crowd! If someone really want to see the pope and listen the speak, she or he will stay at home and watch the TV. Most of people can’t see or hear anything except others around them.

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