Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong)
Classification Protestant
Orientation Calvinist
Theology Reformed Evangelical
Polity Presbyterian
Region South Korea
Origin 1959
South Korea
Separated from Presbyterian Church in Korea (TongHap)
Branched from Presbyterian Church of Korea
Separations Presbyterian Church in Korea (Koshin)
Congregations 11,000
Members 3,000,000[1]
Ministers 6,300

The Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong) is a Evangelical Presbyterian denomination, which is the biggest Christian church in South Korea.[2]


In 1959 at the 44th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Korea the denomination divided into two equal parts due to the church view of the issue of ecumenism and the World Council of Churches. The HapDong section represented more theologically conservative wing than the TongHap. The Tonghap group maintained its affiliation to the World Council of Churches and the National Council of Churches and allowed relatively wide range of theological positions.[3][4]

The Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong) became a more conservative group, in its strict doctrinal basis made it possible to united later with the Presbyterian Church in Korea (Koshin) in 1960, but this union did not last, Koshin separated in a few years later. About 150 Koshin congregations stayed with HapDong. Later it started a seminary and newspaper. In 1961 a group called the Bible Presbyterian Church- now called the Presbyterian Church in Korea (Daeshin).[5]

At the 64th General assembly in 1979 the church suffered another division. Kim Hee Bo the President of the ChongShin Seminary become advocate of the historical-critical approach to the Pentateuch. The church divided into a mainline and non-mainline groups.

The debate centered about two issues: the authorship of the Pentateuch and the relationship with the ChongShin Seminary. The non- mainline section fragmented in the following years.

In the 1990s the current HapDong experienced phenomenal growth. In the early 2000s HapDong continued to grow and developed into the biggest denomination in South Korea with more than 2,1 million communicant members. The headquaerters of the church is in Soeul, Korea.[6][7]

In Korea there are about 15 million Protestants, about 9 million are Presbyterians in more than 100 denominations.[8]


Membership of the church is about 2,200 000 and has 5,123 congregations with 6,300 ordained pastors in the early 2000s.[9]

According to the Chongshin Seminary's statistics the Hapdong Presbyterian Church has 11,000 congregations and about 3,000 000 members.[10][11]

Theological education[edit]

The Chongshin University and Chonshin Seminary is the only official educational institution of the HapDong Church to train pastors.[12]


The Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong) is a theologically conservative denomination. The Hapdong group subscribe the historic Presbyterian Confessions like:



According to Apostle Paul instructions there are no women ordinations.


The HapDong Presbyterian Church in Korea manatains the Chongshin Theological Seminary [1].[14] in English


The Presbyterian Church in Korea HapDong is the single largest mission sending denomination through the Board of Global Missions in South Korea. Mission fields are in Europe, Southeast Southwest Asia, Russia, Latin America, Brazil, Africa.[15][16]