Mormon Newsroom
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Church Leader Tae-gul Jung Participates in Interfaith Meeting

Recently, LDS Church leader Tae-gul Jung and other members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints participated in interfaith meetings at Chungbuk University in Cheongju Korea. The topic was "Religious Values for Healing the Soul in the Model of the Rural Farm Community".

The conference emphasized the important role of traditional religious wisdom in healing the soul and the relevance of the rural community as a cultural model. Global economic factors have resulted in the transformation of agrarian societies to urban societies. However, the many benefits of the ancient model of the rural farm village are vital to consider as we face challenging social problems in more urban settings.

"Although change is inevitable, we should not forget the important religious teachings and traditional values of the past,” said Elder Tae-gul Jung, one of the senior leaders of the Church in Korea.

The LDS Church emphasizes the importance of traditional values. All societies have some moral basis, whether originating from religion, philosophy, science, or any number of sources. Religious values cannot be dismissed from the public square any more than the vast array of other positive values can be. Efforts to do so ignore the deeply embedded religious antecedents that give shape to the common heritage and identity of peoples across the globe. One of the world’s leading thinkers on religion and society, Jurgen Habermas, wrote that among the modern societies of today, “Only those that are able to introduce into the secular domain the essential contents of their religious traditions which point beyond the merely human realm will also be able to rescue the substance of the human.”

Our pluralistic society makes space for peaceable coexistence and cooperation between diverse people of good will, including the religious and nonreligious. Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles asserted that support for religious freedom “is not a renunciation of the secular or a suggestion that one must choose between religion on the one hand and the whole body of secular learning on the other. That is a false dichotomy.”

Those presenting at the meeting included Professor Yong-hwan Kim from Chungbuk University, Pastor Se-wu Lee of the Cheulnyeok Church, Yeon-suk Kim of Chungbuk University, Professor Yong-chun Choi of Sangji Women’s University, and Lecturer Dong-eui Shin of Hangu Gyoweon University.


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