Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong)

The Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong) is an Evangelical Presbyterian denomination, which is the biggest Christian church in South Korea. The headquarters of the church is in Seoul, South Korea.[1]

Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong)
TheologyReformed Evangelical
RegionSouth Korea
South Korea
Separated fromPresbyterian Church in Korea (TongHap)
Branched fromPresbyterian Church of Korea
SeparationsPresbyterian Church in Korea (Koshin)
Presbyterian Church in Korea
Revised RomanizationDaehan yesugyo jangnohoe Hapdong
McCune–ReischauerTaehan yesugyo changnohoe Haptong


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.[2][3]

The Presbyterian Church in Korea (HapDong) was the more conservative group in the schism. Its conservative doctrinal basis made it possible to unite later with the Presbyterian Church in Korea (Koshin) in 1960. But this union did not last and a group of Koshin churches separated a few years later, although about 150 Koshin congregations stayed with HapDong. In 1961, another group separated to form the Bible Presbyterian Church, later to be called the Presbyterian Church in Korea (Daeshin).[1]

At the 64th General assembly in 1979 the church suffered another division. Kim Hee Bo the President of the ChongShin Seminary advocated for 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. By the early 2000s, HapDong developed into the largest denomination in South Korea with more than 2.2 million communicant members, 5,123 congregations, and 6,300 ordained pastors.[1][4] These figures differ from the statistics offered by Chongshin Seminary, which claims the church has 11,000 congregations and about 3 million members.[5]

In South Korea there are about 15 million Protestants, about 9 million are Presbyterians in more than 100 denominations.[6]


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



According to the Apostle Paul's instructions, there are no women ordinations.

Theological EducationEdit

The Chongshin University and Chonshin Seminary are the only official educational institutions of the HapDong Church to train pastors.[5][7]


The Presbyterian Church in Korea HapDong created the Board of Global Missions in South Korea for supporting evangelism and missions. The Global Mission Society, the missionary body of the Hapdong General Assembly of Presbyterian Churches of Korea, is the single largest Presbyterian missionary organization in the South Korea with mission fields in Europe, Asia, Russia, Latin America, Africa.[8][9]


  1. ^ a b c Melton, J.G.; Baumann, M. (2010). Religions of the World: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Beliefs and Practices. ABC-CLIO. p. 2297. ISBN 9781598842043. Retrieved 2015-06-25.
  2. ^ "The Presbyterian Church of Korea". Retrieved 2015-06-25.
  3. ^ Jeong, P. Y. (2007). Mission from a Position of Weakness. New York: Peter Lang. p. 125. ISBN 978-1433100963.
  4. ^ a b "Presbyterian Church of Korea (HapDong)". Reformed Online. Retrieved 25 June 2015.
  5. ^ a b "History". Chongshin University. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  6. ^ Meehan, Chris (4 October 2010). "Touched by Devotion in South Korea". Christian Reformed Church. Retrieved 25 June 2015.
  7. ^ Chung, Ilung (3 May 2013). "Chongshin University: What We Believe". The Reformed News. Retrieved 25 June 2015.
  8. ^ "History". Global Mission Society. Archived from the original on 2012-03-27. Retrieved 25 June 2015.
  9. ^ "Global Mission Society". Korea Computer Mission.

External linksEdit