Pope visits S. Korea, reaches out to China

By Alejandro Freixes, CCNN Head Writer

Pope in Asia
The Pope was very warmly received in South Korea.

This week, Pope Francis made a historic visit to South Korea, in the first papal visit to the country in 25 years. He used this trip to promote peace in the divided Korean peninsula, where the aggressive North Korean government constantly threatens military action, despite South Korea’s requests for peaceful dialogue.

From 1950 to 1953, the brutal Korean War was fought between USA-allied South Korea and China-allied North Korea, ending with the establishment of a Demilitarized Zone that separates the two countries.

Pope Francis sought to bring healing to the decades-old rift, and he held a Holy Mass for Peace and Reconciliation during his 5-day visit.

He also took part in the 6th Asian Youth Day, which celebrates the coming together of Catholic youths from different Asian countries. Pope Francis even made a speech in English which was the first time he had ever done so as Pope. Although he remained in South Korea, the Pope reached out to China, North Korea, and Vietnam, who do not have formal ties with the Vatican.

Images courtesy of The Vatican.