The First Spiritual Birth of the Year

By | January 5, 2018

Mr. and Mrs. Dhami receive the Holy Marriage Blessing Ceremony

At 12:05am on New Year’s Day, Mr. and Mrs. Dhami received the Holy Marriage Blessing Ceremony with Northeast Subregional Director Demian Dunkley and his wife, Yumiko, as officiators. In the testimony below, Demian recounts how he and his wife were able to provide the Blessing at the start of the New Year. 

I’ve had various experiences learning about my ancestry but I hadn’t been very proactive about it. On Sunday morning, Rev. Richard Buessing, the FFWPU USA President, had emphasized in his sermon that we should communicate with our ancestors, telling them how they can help in achieving God’s will. His message had stuck with me–and at 9:00pm on New Year’s Eve, I found myself grabbing large sheets of paper, mapping out and finding the names of my ancestors.

As I wrote each name on the paper, I spoke to every one of them, telling them ways in which I believe they could support tribal messiahship. It was fascinating–with each line of ancestry, there was a different kind of vibration, and in my case, each line was from a different nation. I then came to realize that the more I knew about each ancestor, the easier it is to assign specific roles.

Demian maps out his ancestry

After wrapping up the meeting with my ancestors, I look at the clock and it’s 11:40pm. I get this really strong feeling that I should go out. It was freezing outside, completely dark, and no one is out. My kids were already in their pajamas getting ready for bed.

But this was the end of the year. Who knows, maybe we can go bless a bunch of people, a voice reverberated in me. I then took a bag of holy wine cups, drove to the top of the town’s biggest hill, and prayed for our town with Yumiko.

During our drive in search of people to Bless in marriage, we were simultaneously shocked and delighted to see an open restaurant. A multitude of reasons why the Blessing was inappropriate at this setting came rushing through my mind. And yet, I was still driving toward the restaurant parking lot.

Mr. Dhami’s $21 gift

When Yumiko and I walked in, we saw groups of people celebrating and partying to usher in the new year. Tentatively, we asked to speak to the person in charge of the restaurant. It was then that we met the restaurant owner, Mr. Dhami.

“We would like to give your friends at this gathering a blessing,” I told him.

Mr. Dhami kindly denied our offer, explaining that the group was too busy and intoxicated.

“Then what about you and your wife?” Yumiko asked.

Mr. Dhami paused for a moment, looked at Yumiko and me, and began to smile. “We would love to be Blessed,” he said. Mr. Dhami then brought his wife, who was already dressed like a queen. Finally, at 12:05am on the first day of the new year, Mr. and Mrs. Dhami were Blessed in marriage.

The Dhamis were so receptive to the Blessing, even giving Yumiko and me $21 out of gratitude. I was astonished that they gave us this amount on their own volition, as 21 is a heavenly, providential number in the Unification tradition.

My renewed relationships with my ancestors, the first spiritual birth of the year, and the coincidental $21 donation were all hopeful signs for the new year.

To learn more about tribal messiahship and the Holy Marriage Blessing Ceremony, visit