Large churches in Seoul are continuing with their Sunday services online, as Korea is still in national battle against COVID-19.
Like the past weeks, Sarang Church in southern Seoul, one of the several megachurches here, is going online for its Sunday services this week. On Sunday, more than 40,000 people viewed the online stream by the church.
“The decision was voluntarily made by the church community -- not by someone’s order. A church -- a religious community -- shares the responsibility in ensuring the safety of the national community,” the church announced Thursday.
Yoido Full Gospel Church in Yeouido, Seoul, the biggest church in Korea, is also continuing with its online Sunday services.
As the coronavirus crisis prolongs, however, some churches are returning to offline services.
Gwanglim Methodist Church in southern Seoul is returning to its offline chapel services Sunday, which had been halted for past two weeks. The church said it will also stream the services online for those who are unwilling to attend offline services.
Yonsei Central Baptist Church situated in Guro-gu, western Seoul, where cases of mass contamination recently broke out, has still not decided on its service form for Sunday.
Meanwhile, the government is calling for churches to continue with their online services. Park Yang-woo, the minister of Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, visited the Korea National Christian Council and the United Christian Churches of Korea on Thursday and asked for churches to take part in participating in “social distancing” to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“I deeply thank the Korean churches for going online for their services and cooperating with the government measures,” Park said. “I ask for Korean churches to continue to take part in going online for services, and to refrain from hosting group events until the crisis is over.”
By Im Eun-byel (firstname.lastname@example.org)