Composed by the National Council of Churches in Korea, the prayer is held annually on the Sunday before Liberation Day, observed in both North and South Korea to mark the date in 1945 when Korea won independence from Japanese colonial oppression. The date was also when the peninsula was divided into two countries.
The prayer notes that this year marks the 70th year of the armistice system.
“The spring wind that had been blowing on the Korean Peninsula for a while has disappeared and now it is only a land filled with cold air,” read the prayer. “The danger of war is growing, and the great power nations are doing as they are wish, regardless of what the people of this land think.”
The prayer reflects on the smallest deeds and the smallest seeds of peace and reunification that remain. “Let the people take up their cross upon their shoulders and climb the hill of reconciliation and peace,” reads the prayer. “Let the energy of war disappear from this land, and let the future of our nation be determined by the strength and wisdom of our nation.”
The prayer also notes that Japan is dumping contaminated nuclear waste water into the ocean.
“God, give us the wisdom to stop these actions that endanger the whole planet,” the prayer reads. “For this, let the South and the North, the North and the South speak with one voice and become a united country that contributes to world peace beyond the Korean Peninsula.”
Prayer material in English
Prayer material in Korean