on Asia-Pacific Forum for Library and Achives Management
Bangalore, India, UTC- June 1 - 30, 2004
and Tasks of Records Management of Religious Organizations
has been 5 years since the law governing document
management for public organizations was enacted in
Korea. According to this law, all central ministries,
and local governments, were to establish a record
center with an archivist. It has been one year since
the law was put into effect by the government’s
central ministries and represents a significant milestone
for document management in Korean public organizations.
To date, the record is far from satisfactory despite
support from the Archives & Records Service, a
governmental organization, and the Research Institute
for Korean Archives, a private organization established
situation is improving with the recent increase in
the public’s awareness of the importance of
document management. Today, movements to establish
archive and record centers are being led not only
by public organizations, but also, by universities,
religious organizations and businesses. With this
background information in place, I would now like
to acquaint you with the status of education for archivists,
the progress being achieved at some religious document
record centers, and tell you about our experience
at the organization with which I am associated, the
Korean Anglican Archives.
Status for Record Management Education
Science was introduced to Korea in June of 1998 with
the establishment of the Research Institute for Korean
Archives and Records (R.I.K.A.R.). This institute
has been contributing to renewed understanding of
the importance of public record management by correcting
incorrect and incomplete records. It has also helped
the people of Korea through various research activities
and human resource training that help build a solid
foundation for a democratic society.
one of their major contributions, the Research Institute
for Korean Archives and Records(RIKAR) founded the
Korean Graduate School Archival Science (K.G.S.A.S.),
at Myoung Ji University in April 1999, which specializes
in record management training. This school provides
a one-year graduate study program providing specialized
record management training that has been approved
by the Ministry of Government Administration and Home
Affairs (M.O.G.A.H.A.) in 2000. Its curriculum includes:
1) an introduction to record management; 2) record
management theory (organization, description and evaluation);
3) research methodology for record management; 4)
record management and study for provincial regions;
5) the history of record management; 6) Korean history
of record management; and 7) record management for
business. The school has graduated about 100 archivists
addition to founded the Korean Graduate School Archival
Science (K.G.S.A.S.), the Graduate School of Records
& Information Studies was founded at Myoung Ji
University in 1999. There are now nine (9) universities
in Korea that have a graduate programs related to
archival science. Faced with the pressing need for
both a consistent professional record management methodology
and for training specialists to teach those methodologies,
there is rapid growth in the number of educational
courses and institutions related to record management.
Graduates from records management graduate programs,
like founded the Korean Graduate School Archival Science
(K.G.S.A.S.), are qualified for all archivist positions
regulated public organizations document law. Many
of these archivists are engaged with the record management
in the nongovernmental sector in Korea, including
record management with religious organizations.
Status of Religion Related Record Management in Korea.
history of religion and the modern history of Korea
are closely aligned. In Korea, Buddhism was adapted
about 1700 years ago, Roman Catholicism 200 years
ago and the Protestant and Anglican Church started
to establish Korean churches about 150 years ago.
In spite of the strong Confucian and Buddhist cultural
background, Protestantism has grown explosively with
a large percentage of Koreans being Christians. There
is now no Korean town without a church and the number
of different Christian orders in major Korean cities
in is numerous.
days the need for proper records management in churches
mirrors the same rapidly growing need in Korean society
as a whole. In fact, large church structures are now
so large that their organizations now require the
best systematic management processes possible if they
are to provide anything resembling efficient administration.
The present state of church record management leaves
much to be desired and as yet few churches employ
formally trained record management people. This is
not to say that they are resting on their laurels.
Churches and religious organizations are putting considerable
effort into systems for record management to provide
for their specialized needs in managing human resources,
finance and security. I would now like to introduce
you to the present state of records management in
some religious institutions with record management
systems in place or in progress.
Order of Korean Buddhism Central Archives
Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism Central Archives (J.O.K.B.C.A.)
started its record management program in Nov. 2000
the development of a computerized system and an established
set of ordinances concerning record and archival management.
This work was centered on the Central Directorate
of Religious Affairs whose aim was to collect, preserve
and manage the history and activities of Jogye Order
of Korean Buddhism.
Records in many different forms needed to be organized.
They included: 1) paper (such as administrative documents
originating from Central Directorate of Religious
Affairs and drawings), 2) computer data (about 25,000
files), 3) multimedia items (about 1,000 different
items including photographs, film, audio, and video),
and 4) various publications (about 13,000 items including
literature, periodicals, and research materials).
Plans also include eventually collecting and cataloging
treasures of the Buddhist culture that are currently
scattered around different temples throughout Korea.
The goal is to have these items centrally managed
so they can be preserved for the next generation.
To accomplish this goal the Central Archives not only
have a thermo-hydrostat to preserve records but, 1)
a library, which manages all records and literature
published by Central Directorate of Religious Affairs,
2) a room for reading and loan service, 3) a room
to conduct work for classifying, organizing, and cataloging
records materials, and 4) an office for administrative
Management in Catholics
management in Catholic churches is operated by with
a unique balance between the Vatican and Korean Catholic
churches, parishes and dioceses and involves a list
of church laws and operational regulations. Church
law governs a wide range of regulations for record
management as well as for the organization and management
of document materials. The Korean Catholic church
will need more than regulations to carry out its record
management goals in a complete and thorough fashion.
It is therefore imperative for Catholic churches in
Korea to expand the archive function of each parish
with the establishment of a modern records management
system for parish records management. Upon entering
this new millennium Korean Catholic church parishes
are trying various approaches to improving their record
management. The outlook of Catholic Church in Korea
will be brighter if each parish approaches its record
management challenge diligently because these churches
are operated under such strict guidelines which demand
excellent record management.
Management in Shinil Church
church, which is located in downtown Seoul, has 10,000
members and a sixty-year history. It introduced a
project for an organized scientific records management
system in 2003. This project was adopted to commemorate
its 60th anniversary and will be the foundation for
the publication of its sixty-year history. To build
the centralized store of records project participants
collected not only church history documentation but
also other items of documentary value including administrative
records, photographs, audio, video, and literature.
The adopted Active Record base and Record Schedule
has entries for storage period, publication and stocking
status along with item classification. Record Schedule
also reflects its item unit, which helps each department
manage record items.
computerized registration system and in church network
to be used as reference whenever a record is provided
is now in planning. The evaluation criteria for records
involving church leaders, administrators, church historians,
outside users and archivists will be based on the
established values of the Shinil church, like missionary
work, community service and related activities. These
are the things that will lead to one designation or
another and evaluate those that are worth further
preservation and management.
of Church leaders, administrators, church historians,
outside users and archivist in evaluating records
is to be adopted for preservation and management of
Records Management of The Korean Anglican Church
Anglican Church started with the ordination of Father
C. J. Corfe at the Westminster Abbey in Nov. 1st 1889.
Faced with the national and international uncertainties
during the latter part of the 19th century, most Koreans
were in extremely fluid circumstances. Around this
time Anglican Church began to spread the gospel in
Korea through its missionary work centered on relief
operations that would touch the Korean people’s
daily lives by opening schools and orphanages, undertaking
bible translation and industry mission work. This
was the first time such efforts had been expended
in Korea by an outside organization. Such activities
had a great impact on the modernization of the country.
The Anglican Church continues to provide such service
in Korea through various kinds of community activities.
Korean Anglican Church was elevated as a district
in Sep. 1992 and now has three dioceses - one in Seoul,
one in Daejeon, and one Pusan, with about 130 churches
throughout the country. Along with these churches
are close to 50 house-of-sharing outreach organizations
that provide community services. Anglican Church Korea
is considered rather a small order with only 12,000
followers but is steadily developing into more influential
Korean Anglican Archives is located at the central
library of the Songkonghoe University(the only Anglican
University) in Seoul. The Songkonghoe University began
as an institution for training Korean priests and
is a central part of Anglican Church history in Korea.
The Anglican Church of Korea initiated reorganization
work to prevent church records from being neglected.
Records found around the campus, which were previously
thought lost or damaged, have helped to create an
increasing awareness of the importance of record management
in Korean society.
too, as an archivist living with the demands of modern
times have had some challenging experiences organizing
neglected old records. Many of these records gave
powerful insight into the lives and perspectives of
our ancestors. So much so that I still feel the excitement
from to time today. With these experiences I came
to recognize how important and necessary record management
is, not only as a valuable historical source but also
as a way of getting to the root of one’s cultural
to missionaries in the pioneer days who recognized
the importance of records management and began to
collect and organize historical records at time when
there was no concept for records management, many
invaluable documents are remaining in tact. Those
records contains well documented journals and reports
on the activities and circumstances surrounding church
that are superior to the mechanized, digitalized contemporary
data processing. Furthermore, remaining historic photographs
clearly demonstrate the size and powerfulness of Anglican
Church that was much stronger than is today and these
are valuable documentation for modernization period
of Korean history.
early period Anglican Church publications from that
remain in tact provide an invaluable source for learning
about the ancestral attitude and their purity toward
faith. It is regretful in many respects to realize
that records and documents have been lost that could
provide valuable perspectives about the contributions
that the Anglican Church made to Korean society. Unfortunately,
little information that could support the missionary
newsletter Morning Calm or the Anglican Church Monthly
remains and there is no way to obtain a detailed history
of the orphanages, schools, and churches mentioned
in those publications. There is little chance of rectifying
this situation since few among those who were engaged
in this historical documentation are still alive.
Significant effort should be expended secure information
from any of these elderly historians that would able
to testify for the historical record.
we have begun to protect original records of historic
value at the Archives Institute. First, a scanning
order is established for incoming documents. Once
records are scanned they are stored on CD. The digitalized
information is now provided for reading and lending
so that damage to the originals is minimized. The
CD based solution is beneficial and at some time in
the future we would like to also provide microfiche.
are large differences, in term of the amount of records,
among the different Anglican churches. Part of this
discrepancy is due to the rotation of priests every
five years. Record quantity, consistency and accuracy
are dependent on the interest level of individual
priests at the individual church level. Some churches
have a wealth of records; others have no records at
all, although very few churches fit this last category.
Because of the inconsistency of records at the individual
church level, the larger Anglican Church needs to
establish a centralized records management system
in order to save a valuable historical record that
will otherwise be likely lost. Had such intervention
occurred earlier many records now lost could have
the order of the Anglican Church increases the church
and its activities increase become more complex. The
amounts of records are increased commensurately. Loss
of records and important administrative documents
will increase if they are left on their own without
proper management and evaluation. The foundation for
the future of the church is a thorough knowledge of
its past. Loss of historical documents is after all
a loss of history and the history is part of the believer’s
identity and part of the believer’s identification
with the church. Loss of valuable historic records
can lead to an ebbing away of feeling for the church
which may make the future of the church more uncertain.
This in turn may lead to weaken the favorable opinion
of the general public toward church’s administration
and finance. Transparent administration and finance
through modern record management are now emerging
as key factors in maintaining public trust.
goal of our archive is to establish itself as an archival
institution providing a secure, efficient and economic
holistic records management system for records of
our order, and to spread the record management culture.
collected and managed from each church, organization
or department are classified according to the General
Records Schedule to move to the Archival Institution.
After the final evaluation of record the selected
records will be exhibited to the public and handed
down to following generations.
records means preserving history to be handed down.
Needless to say it is important to preserve historic
records because they contribute to our cultural identity
and form a foundation on which the next generation
can build their own history. Unfortunately, a smaller
number than is needed appear to recognize the importance
of this historical record. The nature of records management
does not show itself in short-term benefits nor does
it provide incentives for aggressive financial investment.
A lack of efficient equipment and information systems
does not help. There is a need for the systematic
and regulated collection and management of records.
Establishment of regulations from the top level of
the church organization with an expression of strong
support for church record management is imperative.
if our church order does not show any interest for
holistic church records management, I, as a person
charged with records management, will preserve and
organize church related records to the best of my
ability. I, just as those missionaries did in the
early years, will be doing my part for the next generation
hoping they may feel the same excitement I did when
they are able to look at historic records in the future.