Jul 12, 2018
On the eve of the Trump-Kim summit in Singapore, Pope Francis led a crowd of 20,000 in St. Peter's Square in prayer for a successful outcome of the talks. Many other people throughout the world also undoubtedly prayed for that result.
But whether all those prayers will be answered is something we may not know for months, possibly years. That is no less true of prayers that included the intention of bettering the horrendous situation of human rights and religious liberty in North Korea.
Shortly before the meeting of President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un, the Washington-based Religious Freedom Institute sent the White House a letter signed by foreign policy specialists, human rights activists and religious leaders urging Trump to raise those issues with Kim.
"For decades, North Korea has been in effect a national torture chamber. There is nowhere on earth more dangerous for dissenters of conscience, especially those who believe in God," said the letter. Among the signers were Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore, former chairman of the U.S. bishops' committee on religious liberty, Professors Robert George of Princeton and Steve Schneck of the Catholic University of America, and Miguel Diaz, former American ambassador to the Holy See.