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Blue-eyed priest publishes an essay to share the beauty of Korea

Blue-eyed priest publishes an essay to share the beauty of Korea

Posted August. 12, 2023 07:59,   

Updated August. 12, 2023 07:59


Father Kim Ha-jong, the 'blue-eyed priest' who runs Anna's House, a soup kitchen for the homeless in Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi province, recently published an autobiographical essay, “Chef Per Amore,” in his native Italy.

I wanted to share the beauty of Korea and its people through this book," Father Kim said at a book launch event on Thursday at the South Korean Embassy to the Holy See in the Italian capital, Rome. He had previously published a narrative nonfiction book titled "Love Feeds" in Korea in 2021, expressing his commitment to sharing.

Father Kim, ordained as a Roman Catholic priest in 1987, arrived in Korea in 1990 as the first missionary sent by the Oblate Missionary of Mary Immaculate. He changed his name to Kim Ha-jong, which signifies 'a servant of God,' from Vincenzo Bordo. He began urban poor pastoral work in Seongnam City, Gyeonggi Province, in 1992 and opened Anna's House in 1998 to help the growing number of homeless people in the wake of the 1997 Asian Financial crisis.

In August of last year, Kim Keon-hee, the First Lady of President Yoon Suk Yeol, garnered attention for volunteering to serve meals and wash dishes at the shelter."

Eun-A Cho achim@donga.com