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Independence Patriot of the Month-November
Date 2007-11-08 오전 9:01:43 View 3116
Joo Ki-chul (1897.11.25~1944.4.21)

The Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs (Minister Kim Jung-bok), in consultation with the Korea Liberation Association and the Independence Hall of Korea, designated Pastor Joo Ki Chul (1897.11.25~1944.4.21) who had the courage to stand up against bowing to idols and died in prison under the Japanese colonial rule as Independence Patriot of November this year, marking the 110th anniversary of his birth.

Pastor Joo was born in Changwon, Gyeongsangnam-do (Province) and entered college of commerce, Yonhi College (predecessor of Yonsei University) after graduating Osan School in 1916. But he quit the school owing to his bad health and came back home to devote himself to religious life as a deacon of a church.

When the March First Movement, or the Samil Movement, took place in 1919 in his hometown, he actively participated in the drive and he was elected chairman of Chosun Youth Corps when he participated in its organization meeting as a representative of Woongjin Youth Activist Group.

In 1936, he was appointed pastor of Sanjunghyun Church in Pyungyang, a birthplace of Presbyterian Church of Korea. At the time, traditional Christian schools in Pyungyang were on the brink of closure since they refused to bow to idols put up by Japanese. The Chosun government-general established so-called "countermeasure against Christianity" in February 1938, coercing Christian churches and congregation as well as students of Christian schools into bowing to idols and persecuted them if there was anyone who refused to do so.

In September 1938 when the National Presbyterian Church Association succumbed to the fierce oppression of the Japanese and decided that it is OK to bow to idols, Pastor Joo stood up against the decision and preached a sermon titled "determination of death" and appealed to the congregation to censure the unfair oppression of annihilating the patriotism of Koreans and refuse to bow before the idols. He was arrested by the Japanese Police, going through severe torture and strict surveillance. After being released, he didn`t bend his conviction and continued to anti-idol preach, he was arrested again on charges of lese majesty and violation of the Maintenance of the Public Order Act in July 1940 and died during his service in prison.

He was awarded Dongnip Jang (the Order of Independence) in 1990.
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Independence Patriot of the Month-November
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