Hi all, how are you dealing with your daily life with COVID-19? I miss jogging already. Some say it’s fine to stroll around where it’s not crowded, but others say don’t go out unless it’s for a grocery shopping. So… I’m just staying home because safety comes first.
To viewers who were drawn by the title, relax! Of course, I know it’s wrong, and am not going to force you to change your religion from whatever you believe in! This post is rather for telling how a ‘coercive conversion’ can be cruel.
Before we begin, have you ever heard of ‘coercive conversion’? It’s forcing someone to change their religion (this crime includes using sleeping pills and kidnapping, locking up the victim), which is a brutal crime to be done in this civil world. However, this is still happening in South Korea until now.
Wait, what? I heard South Korea is a democratic country! You’re telling the truth, and surprisingly, Korea even clarified the right to have freedom of religion in the Constitution – which means you can’t force others to believe what you believe, according to the law.
Then, what’s happening? Who’s breaking the law? How are they keeping committing the same crimes without getting captured?
You might think it’s a minor religious organization, but it’s the opposite. The pastors from so-called orthodox Christianity churches are committing this to the minor religious organization, which is known as ‘cult’. Their target is a so-called cult where doesn’t have much supports from the public so that the victims won’t get any help.
What’s more, since the ‘orthodox’ church’s deeply related to Korean politicians and actively participating in a political campaign, ‘orthodox church’ means ‘votes’ to politicians. None of the ‘coercive conversion pastors’ has been punished because of it. Politicians overlook the crimes because if they capture those pastors, they might look like supporting cults over their major votes – Christians.
So, what have those pastors done? I brought an article from the survivor of the coercive conversion. (The reason I described the victim as a ‘survivor’ is that already two women were dead in the coercive conversion program)
“The reason why I’m writing this letter of plea is that my rightful right of a citizen in South Korea was completely ignored. Now I strongly accuse it.
Those times still make me furious and regretful. Still, I’m sending this letter of plea not for revenge, but for wishing to prevent another victim like me from the bottom of my heart. I hope this country could show me that there’s still justice and the law is alive, not ignoring my voice for it’s from a weak, young, female adult.
Even until I was a sophomore at the university, I went to school and developed my own future, like how other university students do. However, at this innocent, dreamy, and passionate young age, my humble happiness and freedom were all taken.
My cellphone was taken while I was asleep and they forcefully changed my clothes. I was dragged out of my house, put in a car while my both hands were bound, then taken to a mountain. I was locked there for three days.
The kidnapper was my parents. Why would’ve my parents done that to me? I couldn’t understand and imagined their thought.
It turns out that my parents did that because the coercive conversion pastor lied to them that I was in a strange religion and asked them to give money to ‘consult’ me, which was giving hate speeches to me about Shincheonji.
The pastor convinced them to do this by saying that your daughter can be normal only if you kidnap her and bring her here. Just because Shincheonji church wasn’t approved by Christian Council of Korea (CCK), I was forced to participate in the coercive conversion program under thorough monitoring for three days, locked in a room, and not allowed to sleep.
For whom the coercive conversion exists? Freedom of religion is for everyone, but it’s shocking to know that there’s a program to change other’s religion by force.
Before I participate in the program, my parents insulted me and threaten me to sign the agreement to avoid the legal issue. I was astounded by how my parents suddenly changed. That behavior also was from the pastor’s instruction.
For three days, the pastor treated me like a lunatic, often telling me that I have a huge mental illness and insulted me that my intelligence is below primary school students when I’m a university student. In addition, they indoctrinated their doctrine to me forcefully.
After three days, I was taken to Gwangju by force because I didn’t change my religion. They locked me in a vacation cabin in a country to take the coercive conversion program by force for about ten days.
After that, I had to participate in the same program in a studio apartment near the pastor’s church. The pastor described me as an insane person to my parents, right in front of me. They made my parents spy on me every movement while ignoring whatever I say and do means, treat me as if I was a serious criminal.
Receiving the unwanted coercive conversion program for two months and a half, my family’s financial situation became terrible because of the coercive conversion program fee.
What’s worse, my family’s minds were worn out and the relationship among the family was devastating. I vomited and fainted every day, suffered from serious hair loss, a skin disease all over my body, and I even discharged blood from stress.
When I was captured after trying to running away because I was worn out from the program, my face and body were trodden and punched ruthlessly in the street. I still have bad dreams about it every day, being captured while trying to escape, beaten. My faith in my family was terribly shattered.
The pastor alienated me and my family to ruin our happy, normal lives. They led my parents to make me participate in the coercive conversion program and received enormous money would still living well, spending money from the coercive conversion business. If they are not to be punished after they ruined a person’s life, or family’s lives, no, a lot of family’s lives, who is to be punished? Why the law exists?
I deeply hope no more victims like me suffer from this. Please listen to me and help.”
This article was written in 29 Sep., 2020. (http://www.newscj.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=783995) So, it’s currently happening in South Korea. Especially during this pandemic sitch, the coercive conversion pastors are boosting up their ‘business’ because it’s ‘a right time’ to kidnap children since they stay home. For somebody, home is not safe place to be. I want the justice for the perpetrators and peace for the victims by letting the world know about this.
3 thoughts on “Is Forcing Someone to Convert Their Religion Okay?”
Coercive conversion is an amoral and criminal practice implemented by Presbyterian pastors who belong to the Christian Council of Korea (CCK). Thank you for raising awareness by posting this article. The UN has called for the immediate shutdown of the Christian Council of Korea (CCK). How can the Korean government just idly watch this happen?
Where is justice
No one can force somebody to change their religion. 😥😥