Controversial TV Priest claims Korea ‘Free from Homosexuality’

Homophobic Preist Debates on Live Television

Following Lady Gaga’s allegedly evil concert last month that saw some South Korean groups praying for its cancellation, the public debate on her time in Korea continues. A televised debating show that had been covering the fact that many of Gaga’s concerts were ‘R’ rated invited a range of speakers to engage in a heated discussion, including the Reverend Jeong-Hoon Yoon who, already known for a high profile battle on Twitter with a liberal commentator Professor Jin (pictured right), came under fire from many Koreans for making some particularly strong remarks against homosexuality in Korea.

From HeraldBiz:

On the TV program ‘The debate to put on end to all’, Reverend Jeong-Hoon Yoon asks ‘Which is dirtier, mad-cow disease or homosexuality?’

Comments from Reverend Jeong-Hoon Yoon, Representative of Greencontents Movement, on homosexuality have sparked violent reaction from netizens.

Rev. Yoon appeared at the debate program on tvN channel (hosted by Ji-Yeon Baek) on the 2nd of May, to discuss the topic ‘Was it valid to declare that the Lady Gaga concert was harmful to adolescents?’ He commented that Lady Gaga’s lyrics that say ‘homosexuality was created by God’ show an overt support for homosexuality, which is against the Bible and derogatory of Christianity.

During the debate, he continued to hurl sharp insults towards homosexuals, saying that ‘homosexuality wasn’t created by God’ and asking ‘which is dirtier, mad-cow disease or homosexuality?’

He claimed that South Korea has been so far free from homosexuality, standing in stark antagonism with Professor Joong-Gwon Jin (Professor of Dong-yang Univ.), who was well known as a liberal commentator and another panel speaker that day.

Professor Jin retorted at the ‘homo-free’ argument, saying that the country used to be free from Christianity for 5,000 years. ‘The country was very clean then – does this offend you? This is what we call discrimination,’ he added. He also pointed out the conservative take on homosexuality by the Christian community in South Korea, commenting that only a part of the Korean Christian community sees homosexuality as anti-Bible, and that other countries even allow appointing homosexuals to clerical positions. ‘If the Bible says ‘stone homosexuals to death,’ will you really follow it? It is problematic to understand the Bible literally. If so, we would have to restrict viewing of the Old Testament from under-19s,’ he argued.

The problem evolved when some netizens started criticising Rev. Yoon on his Twitter account (@JunghoonYoon), regarding his comments ‘overboard’ after watching the debate.

A Twitter user (week****) mentioned him saying ‘it is inappropriate to view homosexuals as AIDS virus carriers; like someone said before, love is not for sex.’ To this, Rev. Yoon made an obscene reply, mentioning a specific body part. When another Twitter user criticised this saying ‘so this is the expression coming from a Korean priest,’ he replied ‘you make me puke,’ adding oil to the fire.

Twitter users rapidly started condemning his ‘rash’ behaviour in this war of words.

Many Twitter users were not shy of expressing their anger. ‘I was wondering who Reverend Jeong-Hoon Yoon was, and the debate showed me what kind of mind-set he had’ said dodo****, while bayst**** commented that ‘it seems to me that Jeong-Hoon Yoon has only had an immature training of the rational mind. On top of it all, his theological knowledge and faith as a priest is very seriously mediocre.’

Some Twitter users found his comments unpalatable; p_ele**** wrote ‘Dear Rev. Yoon, think about how many homosexuals would have been discouraged and suffered from the view of the world, while you were confident that our country was homo-free. Please be more benevolent and embrace their pain.’

Reverend Yoon and Professor Jin were accompanied by Jin-Mi Hwang (film critic) and Hee-Mun Cho (Professor of Inha Univ.) in the panel for the debate. They not only discussed homosexuality but also the Korean acceptability standard of rating cultural contents, attracting public attention. South Korea is the only nation that Lady Gaga has visited during her World Tour to have decided to give her concerts an R rating.

Comments from Nate:


The Bible is a funny book. Homosexuality is a crime to die for, but incest is allowed. Weird book it is.


‘The Bible should be understood in accordance with the current trend……’ Would [they] understand even if we say so??……


Must they [homosexuals] be condemned? I think Christians should embrace and walk with them too.


The country was free from homosexuals? How do you know that, did you do a survey or something?

Comments from Twitter:


Rev. Yoon says ‘Korea is homo-free.’ But you can find the history of homosexuality from the Silla dynasty to the Joseon dynasty, with a bit of literature research. On the other hand, Catholicism came to the Korean Peninsula in the 17th Century, and Christianity in 19th. How ignorant of them [to insult homosexuality], being juniors by far according to the records.


It’s simple why Catholics are against homosexuality. It’s because the Bible bans it. It’s a religious belief so doesn’t need any complex logic. The Pharisee Jeong-Hoon Yoon uses some random nonsense to support his opposition against homosexuality. That’s why he is being criticized.

Melong 언제나 로멘티스트(@melong_b)

Thanks to Mr Jeong-Hoon Yoon, the public view of homosexuality seems to have become more favorable!!!! How~~ thankful!!!! So how about you throw yourself to death! #nonsense But no, there really are people who say they now support homosexuality after he was criticized… ke ke ke ke ke ke Thanks!!! ke ke ke


It’s complete nonsense of Jeong-Hoon Yoon that Western churches had no choice but to accept homosexuality due to spread of homosexuality which increased the number of homosexual clergymen. He only showed off his ignorance and stupidity on air when he linked homosexuality with AIDS. He seems to be devoid of not only theological knowledge but also common sense.

와이즐렉의 시사펀치(WITS)(@wiselect)

If Rev. Yoon was to tell everyone that homosexuality is a crime according to the Biblical point of view, wouldn’t he have to start by condemning the Western churches’ legalisation of homosexuality? Go criticise the American Christians to start with.


Jeong-Hoon Yoon said “Korea has been free from homosexuality so far.” !? Korea has been free from Jeong-Hoon Yoon [this priest] for 5,000 years.

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  • mouse

    Oh boy. Has this man never been to Itaewon?

    I am sick of the debate over homosexuality. The thing is as a Christian, even if I believe homosexuality is a sin, it’s not up to me to judge someone. Everyone sins. I don’t know why Christians think that homosexuality is one of the “worst”. Sin has no ranking, and honestly, it doesn’t hurt anyone. It’s not like a lie or murder or rape. Anyway, everyone has their own relationship with God and I truly believe the only thing that can keep someone out of heaven is not believing. I think people should just leave it at that.

    Jesus said to love others like God loves us. That doesn’t mean to go around treating people like dirt. Jesus himself would have turn away from this man. Jesus was with the lowest people in Jewish society, not with those preaching against them.

    We are not capable of judging what is truly wrong and not when it comes to sin, so it’s better to just leave it up to God and not spread more hate.

    Homosexuality has been around since the Fall. It’s never going to go away and whether or not Lady Gaga comes to Korea or not, it’s still going to be there.

    It saddens me when I see Hong Suk Chun making small progress and then an article like this show up.

    • lonetrey

      Exactly. Isn’t all sin equal in God’s eyes? I mean… what makes homosexuality ESPECIALLY bad? It’s not like there’s a ranking system, so why do people treat it worse than lying, or shoplifting?

      The reaction is really disproportional. You could say that it’s cruel and unusual…

    • “I truly believe the only thing that can keep someone out of heaven is not believing.”

      ??? First you sound pretty reasonable, and then you come up with that. Why on earth should it matter so much to this god who sends people to heaven (presuming it exists) if people believe or not? Shouldn’t being a good person be more important?

      • Noori

        I guess what she meant by it is that everybody is a sinner to God’s standard. Believing in God is the only way to save themselves. It’s a core of Christian beliefs.

      • mouse

        This is a direct quote from the Bible. Only people who do not believe in God will not be allowed in Heaven.

  • Brett Sanbon

    One thing all you hardcore Christians dont realize is that your pastor says radical things to get more people in the pews and therefore collect more tithes.

    Sodomy is a sin. But one thing your pastor forgot to tell you is that sodomy is not the act of having anal intercourse. If any of you fuckers even read the Bible, sodomy is the act of ‘dominating’ another person to show you are more powerful. Everytime anyone judges another, they are sodomizing that person(s).

    Originally the church was a community, not a building. Once Christians decided to stay put and build grand cathedrals is when they started worshipping the place and not God.

    Christians make me sick. People who follow Jesus are cool, but I would guestimate those to be less than 1% of all Christians in the world.

    • Bruce Tutty

      There is indeed and difference between following the teachings of Christ, and following any church that uses these teachings for their own purposes.

      This is what is meant by ‘The Devil quotes scriptures too’, where people like this will only use the teachings that support what they say, and never the whole Bible.

      They are merely hypocrites, false prophets, and should be turned away from and ignored.

  • Jang

    This fake Rev. Jeong-Hoon Yoon and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad(Iran, President) would get along very well.
    New Study: Homophobes may be secretly attracted to the same sex?
    “Science is now helping to prove the often held notion that homophobes are secretly attracted to the same sex, despite emphatic denials.”
    “Homophobia is more pronounced in individuals with an unacknowledged attraction to the same sex and who grew up with authoritarian parents who forbade such desires, a series of psychology studies demonstrates.”

    “Individuals who identify as straight but in psychological tests show a strong attraction to the same sex may be threatened by gays and lesbians because homosexuals remind them of similar tendencies within themselves,” explains Netta Weinstein, a lecturer at the University of Essex and the study’s lead author.”

    The religious, Preachers, Reverends etc…Homophobes often say that “being gay is a choice,” which is what really ticks them off because they themselves must choose.
    The repressed feel like they’re going to be sucked into the gay world and feel attraction toward the same sex.

    • Bruce Tutty

      Not all religious teachers are like this, but you do find a lot of it in backwards rural areas, where they only have their own thoughts to draw on.

      To generalise, these types do not discuss their beliefs in order to increase understanding and tolerance, and end up with very off-balanced understandings of what they are learning.

      But what you have here is little more than gossip.

    • AnthonyLudovici

      Come on, I’m against Old Testament esque hatred of homosexuals, but do you really believe a social “scientist” by the name of Netta Weinstein is an unbias source on this matter?

      You may as well cite Diederik Stapel, the social sciences lost any credibility when they renounced real sciences like physical anthropology. That’s why evo psych is the only worthwhile one.

  • TKQ

    If anything it is heartwarming to see how netizens reacted negatively to what he had to say. There is a definite historical record of homosexuality in Korea, not like that even has to be debated; from time immemorial there have been gays everywhere.
    This open discussion, however how vitriolic, is a mark of progress. If people are talking about it, people can’t ignore it. It isn’t too long before GLBTQ citizens will achieve equal rights in this country.

  • Stories of butts

    Dont cha love it when Christians act so Christ like UuU

    • Bruce Tutty

      do you know what you mean?

      • lonetrey

        I think he was being sarcastic….

      • Stories of butts

        That is my happy face UuU

    • pointOFview

      haaaaa~ look just how distorted Christians have made others look at them.. this is just so wrong

  • Bam Wam

    Damn, he needs to listen to more KPOP bands.

    • anne

      listening is not necessary, just watch them in motion.

  • steven

    I thought Koreans generally looked down upon homosexuality. I am glad to see that many netizens at least do not! : D

  • Digitalsoju

    So the question is did god create mad cow disease?

    • Bruce Tutty

      Absolutely…and it did a great job of showing humans what happens when you try to pervert nature and make cannibals out of herbivores!

      Glad to see we were paying attention, and didn’t accept the usual political ‘Its quite safe” lies, and even kicked some dirty politicians out.

  • Yohan

    How can it be a sin to be homosexual? They are born with their sexuality and they can’t change that. Furthermore homosexuality does not hurt or have any effect what so ever to any other human being, so what’s the problem? Homosexuality is a natural variation among humans that have existed for as long as we have been on this earth and in every human population regardless of language, culture and geography.

    • U.N. Owen

      It is the act of homosexuality that is a sin like the act of lying is a sin and the act of murdering is a sin. The Bible tells us whats right and whats wrong, and it says homosexuality is a (commission) sin.

      But I’m wondering where did you get the part that homosexuals are born with their sexuality? I have not heard of it in science, nor mentioned in the Bible. And how is homosexuality “natural”? Are you saying “natural” in the sense of nature or “natural” in the sense of normality?

      • mr. wiener

        You get all sorts of homosexual animals. I learnt this fact on the farm I grew up on. It’s one of the reasons you castrate bulls, unless you want a paddock of them fighting and f*cking each other.

    • pointOFview

      Sir, I cannot agree with your statement that homosexuallity is a “born this way” thing. If so, then they should have been born a homosexual, then be born as a boy or girl. Even science agrees that this child has a repro. organ that is suited for reproduction with the other repro. organ.
      Something like “born this way” is not a very justified argument.
      Because even in my teenage experience, it was more like a choice..
      Not a natural call.

  • Anonton

    Wow i’m suprised that the netizens commented in support for the homosexuals.

    • barack obama

      it’s because there are so many faggots on here. Homosexuality might not be a “sin” to me since I am not religions but it’s still disgusting. I DO respect the rights of homosexuals as human beings, but I despise them in the same way I might hate skaters or overly bitchy effeminate men. I think that is the opinion most people have although the only ones you see are the of the flaming fags, the hardcore Christian nazis, or the pussy ass hippie liberals.

  • aftersch

    I don’t know if I should laugh or cry at this… tragic. I know so many Korean teens who live in shame because they’re homosexual and I can only imagine how hurt they must feel after seeing/reading something like that. Really surprised by the netizens’ reactions, in a good way of course…
    And yep, Homosexuality in Korea has existed forever, as in the rest of the world, sorry dumbass!

  • It’s only a matter of time before Reverend Jeong-Hoon Yoon gets caught with his pants down during a homosexual act.

    • Nah. When christians are involved, rape and pedophilia are far more likely.

  • Chucky3176

    I’m amused at the comments made here, that they’re surprised there’s no anti-gay bashing by netizens. I’m surprised myself that no-one here has yet mentioned that Koreans supposedly believe “there are no gays in Korea”. I suppose if you have to rely on English language sources to form an opinion on Korean opinions, that’s what happens.

    Bam Wam
    Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm
    Damn, he needs to listen to more KPOP bands.

    Bam Wam, you make it sound like there’s something wrong with homosexuality or being “gay” as you would put it. Why do so many Americans bash homosexuality in such demeaning ways, and still preach tolerance toward sexual preferences? The next thing they turn around and say “that looks so gay it’s disgusting”. This is an inconsistency I could never understand. An honest question.

    • Bam Wam

      Haha, way to spin a comment.

      I’m surprise you got all that from a “Damn, he needs to listen to more KPOP bands” Way to stretch and fabricate a tale to make yourself look good. My comment was directed at the article, how can this Priest seriously believe there are no homosexuals in korea, when one of korea’s greatest exports, Kpop, has so many potentially closeted and feminized men? That’s what my comment meant. No one where in it does it say “damn homos, that’s wrong”

      And damn, why do you always bring a person’s nationality into the mix when replying to them. As stated, I am AMERICAN KOREAN. Think before you speak, and learn some humility before you attack people; as of now, you look just as bad the Priest.

    • Brett Sanbon

      The people that “bash homosexuality in such demeaning ways” do not preach tolerance. What are you getting at?

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  • Cleo

    again UNLIKE Japan which would love to claim ancestral heritage to the Korean peninsula – they need to relocate for health reasons

    Japan has just issued some bullcrap about supporting homosexual young people – as if that ameliorates the policy of grabbing skinny PRETTY Chinese boys off the street, raping them all night at their local headquarters and then throwing them out (Literally) out onto the street in the morning naked and destroyed. That part of Farewell, My Concubine was not about a local hanjian discovering his signature – it was about the Japanese but no Chinese movie can come out and name the true culprits.

  • Woo rhee kim

    It’s sad to see an entire nation turn to Christianity just to survive.

  • pointOfview

    this is just soooooooooooooo wrong :(
    I have been babbling to myself the whole time while reading different articles about homosexuality in this page.
    First of all I’m a Christian and to be honest it is such a shame what this Rev. has done.
    This is exactly just why people would never give God a chance, because of how the perspective is shown!
    This is just wrong Mr. Jeong-Hoon Yoon! With due respect to him and to everyone, I’m very sorry and I would want to show my point of view of how we should have showed others or thoughts about such topics.

    Personally, I do not believe in homosexuality. Not just because of my “religion”, but because of logical reason. I believe that a man is for a woman and a woman is for a man. But, does that in tittle me to discrimination?
    a resounding “NO”!
    We should respect peoples choices and not degrade them. For they are human to. No one will ever be perfect, only God. No human can ever be God, so you have no right to judge, no right to be above, no right to discriminate.
    Shouldn’t we love? above all else??
    What is wrong with you people!

    I am not pro homosexual, but the point is we should not do such acts to offend..
    Because how will others respect or love our God if even we don’t share such characteristics??

    최태묵<– I just really wana answer to this dudes comment though, because knowing a fragment of things may lead to ignorance.
    1st of all if you only knew, such acts were already forbidden in the near end and middle of the old testament, therefore such statement is already invalid.
    (historical side) 2nd of all the act was still natural since genetical codes were still perefect and so no hard was made. But this was only right in the creation period, and it ended when the great flood happened.. because since then, there were only few genetical codes and so harm can be made if incest acts were still done.
    Going back to choice/freewill, most of them still had insect acts because of tradition, though it has already been forbidden.

    Hope I have made our point of view clear and once again please forgive the action that has been made :)

  • Someone should tell reverend Looneytune that religion was invented by humans, and homosexuality is natural, occuring in all species.

    “No homosexuality in Korea”? Not according to the dozens (hundred plus) of gay, lesbian and bisexual Koreans that I met.

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