Francis Pak (1835-1868)
Born in 1835, Francis Pak married Margaret Oh and they lived in Cheongju, Chungcheong-do. When the Byeongin Persecution broke out in 1866, the couple took their four sons and moved to Jeolgol, Jincheon (now, Baekgok-myeon, Jincheon-gun). They practiced their religion in secret.
Francis Pak‘s family lived in peace in Jeolgol for two years. They practiced their religion faithfully. They were faced with danger when the persecution got tougher in 1868. On September 5 of that year (July 19, by the Lunar calendar), the police of Juksan, Gyeonggi-do, invaded Jeolgol to arrest the Catholics.
When Francis Pak`s family heard that the police were coming, they escaped into the mountain. When they were escaping they scattered in all directions. While hiding in the mountain, Francis Pak`s wife, Margaret, was arrested with her child on her back. She was beaten mercilessly.
Francis Pak, who was anxious about the whereabouts of his family, came down from the mountain. He stayed one night in the house of a non-Catholic. The non-Catholic assured him saying, "It is safe to stay here overnight, to watch the movements of the enemy." But he reported him to the police in the middle of night.
That was how Francis Pak was arrested and taken to Juksan with his wife Margaret Oh. From the prison Francis wrote to his younger brother Philip and his eldest son Anthony. He made the following recommendation to his brother:
"Please, take care of your little nephews, and worship the Lord with a sincere heart. Obey the Divine ordinance, and follow me."
His letters were lost in a fire with other religious objects during the persecution. Francis Pak and Margaret Oh defended their faith by enduring all kinds of punishment. Together they were martyred in Juksan on September 28, 1868 (August 13, by the Lunar calendar). Francis Pak was 33 years old.