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Open AccessArticle

Guwonpa, WMSCOG, and Shincheonji: Three Dynamic Grassroots Groups in Contemporary Korean Christian NRM History

by 1,* and 2
1
Department of Political and Social Change, Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs, Australian National University, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia
2
Department of Religious Studies, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Religions 2019, 10(3), 212; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10030212
Received: 5 February 2019 / Revised: 5 March 2019 / Accepted: 11 March 2019 / Published: 19 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Religion and Transformation in Contemporary World)
The new religious movements (NRMs) initially emerged in the regional societies of East Asia in the middle nineteenth and early twentieth centuries including Joseon (Korea). The socio-political transformation from feudalism to modernisation emaciated the religiosity of the traditional beliefs (Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, shamanism, and folk religions). Colonial Korea experienced the major turning point in which various syncretic NRMs surfaced with alternative visions and teachings. What is, then, the historical origin of Christian NRMs? Who are their leaders? What is their background? What is the main figure of the teachings? How did they survive? This paper explores the history of Korean Christian new religious movements from the 1920s Wonsan mystical movements to 1990s urban and campus movements. Through the contextual studies of denominational background, birth, founder, membership, key teachings, evangelical strategy, phenomenon, services, sacred rituals, globalisation, and media, the three grassroots groups of Guwonpa (Salvation Sect: Good News Mission), WMSCOG (World Mission Society Church of God), and Shincheonji Church of Jesus the Temple of the Tabernacle of the Testimony (SCJ) are argued as the most controversial yet well-globalised organisations among Christian NRMs in contemporary Korea. View Full-Text
Keywords: new religion; Korean Christianity; Guwonpa (GNM); WMSCOG; Shincheonji; mysticism new religion; Korean Christianity; Guwonpa (GNM); WMSCOG; Shincheonji; mysticism
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kim, D.W.; Bang, W.-i. Guwonpa, WMSCOG, and Shincheonji: Three Dynamic Grassroots Groups in Contemporary Korean Christian NRM History. Religions 2019, 10, 212. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10030212

AMA Style

Kim DW, Bang W-i. Guwonpa, WMSCOG, and Shincheonji: Three Dynamic Grassroots Groups in Contemporary Korean Christian NRM History. Religions. 2019; 10(3):212. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10030212

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kim, David W.; Bang, Won-il. 2019. "Guwonpa, WMSCOG, and Shincheonji: Three Dynamic Grassroots Groups in Contemporary Korean Christian NRM History" Religions 10, no. 3: 212. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10030212

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