“The Christian Council of Cheonan’s witch-hunt, freely finding accusations against Shincheonji Church: a problematic approach”
“The Christian Council of Cheonan’s witch-hunt, freely finding accusations against Shincheonji: a problematic approach”
Resending the letter requesting open discussion with the Christian Council of Cheonan
Shincheonji Church of Jesus, The Temple of the Tabernacle of the Testimony (Shincheonji Church of Jesus’ Cheonan branch church instructor, Minho No) said, “The failure of negotiations for the open debate resulted in the dispersal of distorted information.” He disclosed the contents of the document, saying, "We will correct the wild accusations made by the Christian Council of Cheonan."
According to a press release released by Shincheonji Church of Jesus’ Cheonan branch on Wednesday, the church claimed that even though it has actively expressed its willingness to engage in open discussion with the Christian Council of Cheonan, the Christian Council of Cheonan sent a certificate of content to Shincheonji Church’s General Assembly on Tuesday, and manipulated the media as if Cheonan church had walked out on public debate.
The statement stressed: "Ever since believers from the Christian Council of Cheonan have been coming to Shincheonji Church of Jesus’ Cheonan branch in large numbers, the Christian Council of Cheonan has been showing inappropriate “unchristian-like” actions. We have been strongly proposing an open discussion to establish the correct faith of citizens in Cheonan, and it is simply unacceptable that the Christian Council of Cheonan has played on the media and blamed Shincheonji Church of Jesus’ Cheonan branch church as a reason for the collapse of this public debate."
According to an official request for open debate sent to the General Assembly of Shincheonji Church on 20th July, it seems that the Christian Council of Cheonan has sought only to slander and criticise Shincheonji Church of Jesus. This critical approach is very different to the "Open Dialogue" program for religious harmony that Shincheonji has been attending to achieve mutual understanding and respect for other denominations. This difference seems to have directly affected the breakdown of the forum negotiations.
The Cheonan branch of Shincheonji Church of Jesus added, “An open forum has to be based on the words written in the Bible and not on the words of people. This is because the Bible is the standard and the foundation for believers. We have also stressed that slandering is not permitted. The Christian Council of Cheonan will adversely impact the desired purpose of an open forum by criticizing our suggestions and disparaging Shincheonji’s doctrine, which in fact is based on the Bible.”
The Cheonan branch also reinforced, “The aim of an open forum that Shincheonji has suggested is to compare one another’s doctrines to see if they are based on the Bible. Unfortunately, on the 21st of May this year, negotiations failed at the table because the Christian Council of Cheonan chose to continually find faults throughout the forum. Cheonan branch, on the other hand, just wants it to be held with the Bible as the basis.”
Cheonan branch of Shincheonji Church of Jesus said that they could not agree to hold an open forum on the Christian Council of Cheonan’s terms because it would just end up with them proceeding to groundlessly dish out personal insults and slander. For this reason, Cheonan branch said that they had asked them to discuss without looking at the Bible, or if needed, to put up some verses of the Bible via PowerPoint slides. However, they distorted our intention as if we had disregarded the Bible.”
Cheonan branch has also exclaimed, “We can no longer overlook the illegal practices of the ‘Countercult Committee’ headed by the Chairman of the Christian Council of Korea (CCK) who has conducted coercive conversion programs for monetary purposes, violating human rights”. Moreover, “people in the United Nations and throughout the world are calling for ‘dismissal of the CCK’ which has been carrying out religious conversion programs that trample all over one’s basic human rights.”
The Cheonan branch also exclaimed that, “The Christian Council of Cheonan has to repent! They have shifted the blame onto their opposition by spewing lies and have tried to achieve their malicious purpose through an open forum. Once again, we propose holding an open forum, with the aim not to nit-pick on others, but solely based on the Bible alone.”
A member of Cheonan branch of Shincheonji Church said, "They must put an end to their rude and disorderly behaviour and biased opinions. I strongly suggest we hold an open forum to openly and fairly discuss the Bible (Isaiah 1:18).”