Array of events commemorate Nat’l Foundation Day
Oct. 04, 2019
Global Korean Post
By Jung Joo-ri and Lee Jihae
A government event on Oct. 3 marked the 4,351st National Foundation Day at Sejong Center for the Performing Arts in Seoul.
The holiday honors the foundation of Gojoseon, the first kingdom on the Korean Peninsula in 2333 B.C. by Dangun, the mythical founder of Korea. The Korean name for the holiday, Gaecheonjeol, literally means “the day heaven opened (its) doors,” thus the day symbolizes the beginning of Gojoseon and the birth of the Korean nation.
A government event to commemorate the day under the theme “All together, benefiting the world” was held at Sejong Center, attracting about 2,000 people including those with government honors, figures from Dangun-related organizations, students and foreign diplomats in Korea.
Oh In-tae, a philanthropist who runs the pasta restaurant Zinjja Pasta and provides free meals to underprivileged children, and Father Kim Ha-jong stressed at the event the meaning of the philosophy hongik ingan (benefiting all humankind). An Italian-born priest who is now a naturalized Korean citizen, Kim since 1998 has provided free meals to 1.5 million homeless people and helped them to get back on their feet financially.
The country had about 120 events marking the holiday held by local governments such as ceremonies, traditional rituals and exhibitions.
Korean government offices abroad also marked the occasion such as the consulate general in Los Angeles and embassies in Turkey and Kenya.