The war brought about major transformations in religious life. Christian refugees fled religious persecution in the communist north, swelling the number of believers in the south. Protestant and Catholic churches and relief agencies rushed to offer assistance. Indeed, pictured speaking here, Catholic Cardinal Francis Joseph Spellman made regular Christmas visits to Pusan, both to rally the troops and promote the gospel.
New religions began to spring up in the war’s aftermath. U.N. Turkish soldiers held Korea’s first Muslim service in a Quonset hut. The Reverend Sun Myung Moon built the first Unification Church in Pusan with discarded army ration boxes. Yet alongside these dramatic changes, traditional beliefs and practices, such as fortunetelling and Buddhist monasticism, continued to provide solace and inspiration.