Pius Kim Jin-hu (1739-1814)
Pius Kim Jin-hu was born in Solmoe, Myeoncheon, located in the middle of the Naepo plain of Chungcheong-do. He was the great-grandfather of St. Andrew Kim Dae-geon, and the father of Andrew Kim Jong-han who was martyred in 1816. In his family register his name is recorded as ‘Un-jo.`
Pius Kim came to know about the Catholic religion when his eldest son learned the catechism from Louis Gonzaga Yi Jon-chang and taught it to his brothers. At that time Pius Kim was about 50 years old.
He did not accept the Catholic teaching because of his worldly ambition and pleasure seeking. He could not hear the divine call because he was overly preoccupied with earthly affairs. When he obtained a small government post from the governor, he strongly refused the advice of his children.
His sons kept trying to persuade their father and he was gradually drawn toward Jesus Christ. Not only did he quit his government position, but he also abandoned his relationship with non-believers. Once he embraced the faith he tried to fulfill his religious duties and give good example as the head of his family.
When Pius Kim was arrested during the Sinhae Persecution in 1791 he professed his faith in God. He was arrested four to five more times but was released each time for some unknown reason. He was arrested during the Shinyu Persecution in 1801, exiled and set free.
Pius Kim was arrested again in 1805 and was taken to Haemi. It was at that time that he behaved like a real Catholic. He professed his faith in God without hesitation, even before the chief official.
As the persecution was not official, he had to stay in prison for a long time without being sentenced to death. In prison, the officials and prison guards of Haemi respected him for his noble and dignified personality and conduct. He was allowed to practice his religious duties openly. When he was re-imprisoned his family had to leave their hometown and live in unfamiliar places.
He spent ten years in prison, during which he endured the sufferings and pains of prison with exemplary patience. He died in prison on December 1, 1814 (October 20, by the Lunar calendar). He was 75 years old.
Despite his heroic persistence and determination, the hardship of prison life was too much for his age. It is not known whether he died from disease, hunger or other sufferings. It is said that the entire Church praised him for his heroic life in prison and for the suffering he endured because of his faith in God and Jesus Christ.