To President Moon Jae-in of the Republic of Korea,
Hello, I am priest Cârlan Ungureanu Constantin, confessor of the National Society of Romanian Orthodox Women and parish priest of the Saint Stefan Church from Bucharest, Calea Călărași nr. 83, sector 3.
As a confessor of the National Society of Romanian Orthodox Women, I am currently participating in the HWPL World Alliance of Religions’ Peace (“WARP”) Office. Together with HWPL and other religious leaders here, I am making efforts to realize inter-religious and international peace.
But I write this letter to you after hearing sad news that is hard to believe. It is regarding the revoking of the corporate license of HWPL. It is difficult to understand even with common sense why this organization which has been properly working for peace over the past 5 years is suddenly on the agenda for corporate revocation after COVID-19. I have few things to say about this.
Firstly, HWPL has nothing to do with COVID-19. COVID-19 is a naturally mutated virus that changes quickly it has a low fatality rate but highly contagious. Recognizing this, HWPL ceased all peace events that could bring together an unspecified number of people right after the outbreak. For other programs, they were switched to an online method. HWPL has no relation whatsoever to the occurrence and spread of COVID-19.
Secondly, HWPL and Shincheonji Church are irrelevant. It is true that the Chairman of HWPL and the leader of this church is the same person. It is also true that a portion of HWPL members are also members of this church. But that doesn’t mean HWPL and Shincheonji are the same organization. Even if Shincheonji had a significant negative impact on the spread of COVID-19, it doesn’t mean that HWPL’s corporate license should be revoked.
Thirdly, HWPL is actively providing help for the resolution of COVID-19. As I have mentioned, HWPL stopped all offline meetings after the outbreak of COVID-19. And to everyone working with HWPL, including myself, they shared ways to prevent COVID-19 infection and requested cooperation for that. Furthermore, members of HWPL and people from Shincheonji who recovered from COVID-19 are donating their blood plasma for vaccine development research.
Lastly, governmental authority should be used carefully. Such public power is justified when there is consent of the governed people. Public power that has lost its legitimacy can be violence against the citizens. Such authority must never be used illegally, carelessly, or for one’s personal gain. The revocation of HWPL’s corporate license will require due process, due standard, and due cause.
Having read many related articles, I am aware that Korea has an excellent system for quarantine measures as compared to the rest of the world. But even the best technologies cannot justify illegal actions. I hope there will be a fair settlement regarding the agenda to revoke the corporate registration of HWPL and that the world to know how outstanding Korea’s level of social consciousness is.
I wish for the wellbeing of the Korean government and the citizens.
Priest Cârlan Ungureanu Constantin,
Confessor of the National Society of Romanian Orthodox Women