Envoys, spouses grace a Seoul senior citizens event with attendance
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Envoys, spouses grace a Seoul senior citizens event with attendance
  • By Publisher Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2022.05.23 16:53
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Giving a good image of their countries among senior citizens

By Publisher Lee Kyung-sik

There was a celebration meeting for the senior citizens in Seoul at the Riverside Hotel south of the Han River on April 15, 2022, which was attended by many senior citizens in Seoul, ladies as well as gentlemen.
Supported by senior citizens and arranged by a Korean-language monthly, Wolgan Ggotsegye, the event was attended by civic figures who included Venerable Chief Abbot Hyangdeok of the Cheonman-sa Buddhist Temple in Ulsan, Gyeongsangnam-do Province.

Venerable Chief Abbot Hyangdeok of the Cheonman-sa Buddhist Temple (seventh from left) poses with Ambassador Khaled Abdelrahman of Egypt  and Mrs. Dalia Elgohary, spouse of Ambassador of Egypt (third and sixth from left); Ambassador Andrew Chernetsky of Belarus and Mrs. Maryna Kazhurava, spouse of Ambassador of Belarus (fourth and third from right); and CDA Luis Pablo Ossio Bustillos of Bolivia and his spouse (first and second from right). Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post and Vice Chairperson Joy Cho are seen fourth and fifth from left foreground, respectively.
Venerable Chief Abbot Hyangdeok of the Cheonman-sa Buddhist Temple (seventh from left) poses with Ambassador Khaled Abdelrahman of Egypt  and Mrs. Dalia Elgohary, spouse of Ambassador of Egypt (third and sixth from left); Ambassador Andrew Chernetsky of Belarus and Mrs. Maryna Kazhurava, spouse of Ambassador of Belarus (fourth and third from right); and CDA Luis Pablo Ossio Bustillos of Bolivia and his spouse (first and second from right). Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post and Vice Chairperson Joy Cho are seen fourth and fifth from left foreground, respectively.

The event included a fashion parade where traditional Korean Hanbok costumes were displayed worn by men and women, all in their advanced ages.
Some of the guests who knew the ‘models’ remarked, “Wow, they look much younger than they actually are!”
There were so many senior citizens, men and women, who were presented each with a citation for the good deed they offered for the benefit of the society and the country.

 Chief Abbot Hyangdeok and Host Chairman Yoo Jae-ki of Wolgan Ggotsegye (10th and 11th from left, respectively), pose with the prize winners ambasssdors at the celebration meeting for the senior citizens in Seoul at the Riverside Hotel on April 15, 2022.
 Chief Abbot Hyangdeok and Host Chairman Yoo Jae-ki of Wolgan Ggotsegye (10th and 11th from left, respectively), pose with the prize winners ambasssdors at the celebration meeting for the senior citizens in Seoul at the Riverside Hotel on April 15, 2022.

Presentation of citizens to the large number of winners caused the dinner beyond the normal dinner time, which, however, was seemingly was generously pardoned by the guests obviously out of consideration for the senior citizens being presented with the awards.

The event for the senior citizens of Seoul on that day was graced with the attendance of some of the ambassadors and other senior diplomats with their spouses.
Their kind attendance was a sheer example showing their affection for Korea and Korean people, especially the senior citizens. In Korea, even today, the senior citizens are accorded a measure of respect and care by the citizens, although it is not as strong and high as in the past.

Venerable Chief Abbot Hyangdeok of the Cheonman-sa Buddhist Temple (10th from left) delivers a speech at the celebration meeting for the senior citizens.
Venerable Chief Abbot Hyangdeok of the Cheonman-sa Buddhist Temple (10th from left) delivers a speech at the celebration meeting for the senior citizens.

Winning the gratitude and affection from the participants that evening, among the distinguished diplomats, were Ambassador Andrew Chernetsky of Belarus with his spouse, Mrs. Maryna Kazhurava; Ambassador Cezar Manole Armeanu of Romania with his spouse, Madam Ligia Armeanu; and Ambassador Khaled Abdelrahman of Egypt with Madam Dalia Elgohary. There also were Charge d’Affaires Luis Pablo Ossio Bustillos of Bolivia with Mrs. Bstillos and Deputy Head of Mission Saidov Zokir of Uzbekistan with Mrs. Saidova Dildora.

A traditional Hanbok fashion show gets underway where a variety of Korean Hanbok costumes were displayed at the Riverside Hotel south of the Han River on April 15, 2022.
A traditional Hanbok fashion show gets underway where a variety of Korean Hanbok costumes were displayed at the Riverside Hotel south of the Han River on April 15, 2022.

The event where the aged persons played such a prominent role posed a sheer contrast with the rumoured practices in the olden times in Korea where the aged persons who ‘lived too long’ were abandoned in mountains in what was known as Goryeojang (or Funeral of Goryeo).
Legends indicate that some Koreans, especially the very poor one, carried their overly aged parents to remote mountains and left them behind in the mountains to die.

Goryeojang is known to the public as a legend in the Goryeo Dynasty that an old and sick person was taken to the remote mountains and were thrown away, but there is no record of its actual practices in any Goryeo literature.

Female models in traditional Hanbok parade in the fashion show.
Female models in traditional Hanbok parade in the fashion show.

The so-called 'story of Goryeojang,' the story of abandoning of their parents, is the first in the historical records of various countries that existed on the Korean Peninsula that the 'one who abandoned the old woman' in the ‘Chosun Fairy Tale Collection,’ written by Sim Ui-rin, a Korean language scholar during the Japanese colonial period. It was confirmed, and the time when the book was written coincided with the time of excruciating

Goryeojang, a black-and-white film produced in 1963 by director Kim Ki-young, is a representative example. There is also a short story called 'Goryeojang' published in 1978 by Jeon Sang-guk.

A number of female models clad in traditional Hanbok perform in the fashion show.
A number of female models clad in traditional Hanbok perform in the fashion show.

Today in Korea, many aged Koreans are financially comfortable, and spend money as freely as they wish, and many of the aged participants in the event that day appeared to belong to such group of senior citizens in Korea, those who were financially comfortable and could afford many things that their forefathers forwent due to poverty.

A male model in traditional clothes participates in the fashion show held at the Riverside Hotel south of the Han River on April 15, 2022.
A male model in traditional clothes participates in the fashion show held at the Riverside Hotel south of the Han River on April 15, 2022.
A senior citizen was presented with a citation for the good deed she offered for the benefit of the society and the country.
A senior citizen was presented with a citation for the good deed she offered for the benefit of the society and the country.

 


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