UTS 40th Commencement Ceremony

~familyfed.org

On May 28, over 200 associates, friends and family members gathered in Barrytown, New York to attend the 40th commencement ceremony of the Unification Theological Seminary (UTS). Twenty-two candidates for graduation were conferred degrees at the ceremony, with several additional candidates honored in absentia. Two gentlemen, Dr. David Eaton of the New York City Symphony and the Rev. Dr. Michael Sykes of the United Missionary Baptist Church of East Orange, NJ, were also awarded honorary doctoral degrees.

Though the day was seasonably hot and humid, spirits were high and marked with gratitude at the commencement ceremony. Dr. Ki Hoon Kim, Continental Chairman of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) North America, gave the commencement address. In addition to recounting his own experiences as a student at UTS from 1993-1996, Dr. Kim identified the connection in purpose between the founding of UTS and the establishment of the Universal Peace Academy (UPA) and Wonmo scholarship programs.

“These institutions,” he said, “were created by the founders of UTS, Father and Mother Moon, on the same principle: to provide education centered on God to both America and the world.” Further lamenting the current state of confusion evident in America from the level of families to that of the current presidential candidates, Dr. Kim invited the graduates and all others in attendance to participate in the upcomingGod Bless America Family Festival as an invaluable opportunity to help bring America back to God.

Read Dr. Kim’s Message

Dr. Hugh Spurgin, President of UTS and member of the original graduating class of 1977, likewise exhorted the graduates in his congratulatory remarks to take hold of the responsibility endowed to them by attending UTS. “God is sending you as his representatives to serve the people of despair in the world. He is sending you to bring love, peace, and hope to this world and to put an end to bigotry, selfishness, hatred, and corruption. Like a small mustard seed that has just been planted, the world doesn’t know you are coming; but the reach of your love and faith will grow, and you will be the ones to lead a spiritual revolution based on the love of God.”

Remarks were also given during the ceremony by Dr. Eaton and the Rev. Dr. Sykes in gratitude for the honorary degrees they received, and by two students representing the masters’ and doctoral cohorts, respectively: Mr. Samuel Mitchell, Master of Religious Education, and Dr. Drissa Kone, Doctor of Ministry in Peace and Justice.

Three musical performances were offered during the ceremony. Following the processional of the candidates, alumni, and faculty, Mrs. Ilwha Compton sang the national anthem to convene the event, and Mrs. Seiko Lee performed renditions of “The Lord’s Prayer” and “You’ll Never Walk Alone” during the course of the program.

The ceremony was fittingly opened and closed with prayers of congratulation and rededication, and a reception followed the conclusion of the event for all in attendance.

To learn more about UTS and the unique programs offered at this interfaith seminary, please visit their website. While the main seminary campus remains in Barrytown, NY, many classes are now offered at the New York City branch campus and the recently opened Maryland branch is thriving.

Your Weekly Update – May 27

~from familyfed.org

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Every week the National Ministry Team compiles stories and important upcoming events in a quick weekly update video. Here is what we cover this week:

GPA’s CIG Missionary Trainees Return Home

Generation Peace Academy’s (GPA) Cheon Il Guk Missionaries in-training have just returned home after dedicating three months to outreach efforts across the Philippines. Watch the Weekly Update video to hear excerpts from their reflections firsthand.

 

God Bless America Family Festival

We are just one week away from June 5, when we will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Yankee Stadium Rally, the 62nd anniversary of the founding of HSA-UWC, and the 54th Day of All True Things with True Mother. Join us at Belvedere on June 5 with your family and friends, where there will be international food, an anniversary celebration, live music, fun for kids, and more!

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Cham Bumo Gyeong

The Cham Bumo Gyeong is the third volume of the Holy Scriptures after the Cheon Seong Gyeong and Pyeong Hwa Gyeong. Comprised of True Parents’ life course in their own words, the Holy Scriptures set is a profound source of daily inspiration and a priceless addition your home library.

Order a Copy

 

Memorial Day Celebrations

Monday, May 31 is Memorial Day. We wish everyone a very happy holiday in remembrance of those who have offered their lives to the service and safety of others, both at home and abroad.

This week in history, May 22-28

International Strides for Peace

This week in history, May 22-28:

  • Peter Koch departs as the first missionary to Europe (May 22, 1963)
  • The American Clergy Leadership Conference is inaugurated (May 22, 2000)
  • The Universal Ballet Company is established (May 24, 1984)
  • Women of Peace Rally takes place in Jerusalem (May 24, 2004)
  • Interfaith clergy attend the Marriage Blessing Ceremony (May 27, 2001)

Continue reading This week in history, May 22-28

Your Weekly Update – May 20

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Every week the National Ministry Team compiles stories and important upcoming events in a quick weekly update video. Here is what we cover this week:

Third Annual Ocean Summit

Forty ocean-lovers and Ocean Providence leaders gathered for the Third Annual Leadership Ocean Summit at East Garden in New York. Over the weekend of May 14-15, they listened to and shared testimonies and memories of spending time with True Father out on the water. A highlight of the program was an informative session and goal-setting activity for getting involved with Ocean Providence. Participants were left inspired and renewed to continue building upon their passion and goals for ocean-related projects.

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Peace King Cup Fishing Tournament

On Saturday, May 14, the Peace King Cup Luncheon and Awards Ceremony celebrated this year’s fishing tournament and True Parents’ 56th Marriage Blessing anniversary. Winners received a cash prize and trophy, and shared about the challenges and triumphs of their fishing experience. This year, 145 people braved a day of fishing on the Hudson River, rain or shine, and were part of the biggest turnout in the tournament’s history. If you missed this year’s tournament, you don’t have to wait a whole year to go fishing! Contact Captain Takahashi (ktaka10591@gmail.com or 914-629-7660) to schedule your fishing trip this summer.

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Bay Area Can Do It!

The Bay Area Family Church held a We Can Do It seminar for Tribal Messiahship the weekend of May 14 and 15, presented by Demian Dunkley, the director of evangelism for FFWPU-USA

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God Bless America Family Festival

On June 5, we will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Yankee Stadium Rally, the 62nd anniversary of the founding of HSA-UWC, and the 54th Day of All True Things with True Mother. Join us at Belvedere on June 5 with your family and friends, where there will be international food, an anniversary celebration, live music, fun for kids, and more!

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Parents in Bay Area Get Real About Pornography

~from FFWPU-USA, BFM

Rev. Kevin Thompson, pastor of the Bay Area Family Church, gave an informative presentation on pornography and the effects of it to a congregation of interested parents on Sunday, April 25. Rev. Thompson recently attended the Set Free Summit with 40 other passionate Unificationists, which addressed the pornography culture. The following are some key points that Rev. Thompson emphasized in his presentation. For more information on pornography, please visit puremind.online.
Continue reading Parents in Bay Area Get Real About Pornography

Your Weekly Update – May 13

~from FFWPU-USA official site (familyfed.org)

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Every week the National Ministry Team compiles stories and important upcoming events in a quick weekly update video. Here is what we cover this week:

Cheong Pyeong Azalea Great Works Festival

Watch the Weekly Update video for a news of the recent festival in Korea and to hear True Mother’s recent message.

 

Celebration with True Mother

On June 5, we will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Yankee Stadium Rally, the 62nd anniversary of the founding of HSA-UWC, and the 54th Day of All True Things with True Mother. Join us at Belvedere on June 5 with your family and friends, where there will be international food, an anniversary celebration, live music, fun for kids, and more!

Register

 

Peace King Cup Fishing Tournament

Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s tournament! Check out the photos and leaderboard of this week’s catches at peacekingcup.com.

Read More

Your Weekly Update – May 6

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Every week the National Ministry Team compiles stories and important upcoming events in a quick weekly update video. Here is what we cover this week:

A Message from True Mother

Watch the Weekly Update video to hear True Mother’s message at the victory celebration for True Parents’ Holy Wedding Anniversary.

 

God Bless America Family Festival

Sunday, May 29, 2016 marks the 40th anniversary of the Yankee Stadium Rally and we’re putting on an exciting God Bless America Family Festival to commemorate this landmark event and continue True Parents’ legacy. Join us at Belvedere on May 29 with your family and friends, where there will be international food, a Marriage Blessing Ceremony, live music, fun for kids, and more!

Register

 

Earthquake Relief Fund

On April 16, an earthquake with magnitude 7.8 occurred near Portoviejo in Ecuador, and Japan’s recent 7.3 magnitude earthquake and aftershocks have caused harm to many. In one of the affected areas, Kumamoto, Japan, 200 Unificationists are in refugee centers around their town and five of their houses are fully damaged, 39 houses are partially damaged, and three family members are hospitalized. We encourage all family members and businesses to contribute what they can to the affected areas of both Japan and Ecuador. You can do so in church this Sunday, or online.

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National Council Meeting

On April 29 – May 1, 2016, the National Council held its semi-annual meeting at the New Yorker Hotel in New York City.

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Divine Principle Workshops – Spring 2016

There are many opportunities coming up to get inspired and recharged with the Divine Principle. Experience a spiritual rejuvenation in Las Vegas, and explore the natural wonders of the region.

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Mother’s Day Tips from CARP

Watch the Weekly Update video for three Mother’s Day gift ideas by the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP) USA.

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MEET NAOKO, TRIBAL MESSIAH

~from FFWPU-USA

In our new “Meet Your Neighbors” series, we share stories from Unificationists around the world who are actively and creatively building their tribes. Today, meet Naoko Hiraki, a veteran member of the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP) in Japan whose deep passion for outreach is catching.

Contributed by CARP Los Angeles

ABOUT NAOKO

After attending the anniversary commemoration of True Father’s ascension with many successful and dedicated international Tribal Messiahs in 2014, Naoko was inspired to replicate their approach in America. She began by sharing her renewed passion and hope for outreach with her local Kodan community in Los Angeles, which determined to work together to reach out to 430 couples and families and create their own tribe of Blessed families invested in living the Divine Principle.

“I heard the testimonies from Unificationists in the Philippines, Thailand and Nepal. They really believe that if in their country even just 12 families could bring 430 couples together as a tribe, then their country will move and they can make Cheon Il Guk (God’s Kingdom) real in this country. They believe in that strongly. I was amazed. If I can believe in starting Tribal Messiahship strongly in this country, we can build Cheon Il Guk here in America. I really wanted to do that.”

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WHAT SHE’S UP TO

One of Naoko’s primary Tribal Messiahship projects has been to revive the CARP Los Angeles campus outreach program. Every day, Naoko and her team strive to engage students at the nearby Pasadena Community College in study and conversation about the Divine Principle.

Her unique approach entails consists of a straightforward reading of the Divine Principle, and letting the textit speak for itself when students sit down with her to read..

“I want to share the Divine Principle very clearly. Little by little, students are changing their minds and hearts, so that is a wonderful thing. Then our hearts are moved by these students and our children’s hearts are moved as they see how these new Unificationists are being transformed by God’s word and God’s heart.”

Naoko uses her personal copy of the Divine Principle when reading with students. She places a tab inscribed with the each student’s name in her copyDivine Principle book, as both a placeholder in their daily study sessions and a wayform of to spark friendly competition between the students.

Even in times when Naoko is only working with one student, she feels how precious an opportunity she has been given to share the Divine Principle with him or her.

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WHAT THE FUTURE HOLDS

On the foundation of Naoko’s campus outreach initiatives, CARP Los Angeles has collaborated with CARP USA to organize a 10-day trip to Japan from May 25 – June 6, 2016. The purpose of this trip is to connect to the historic foundations of the Unification movement in Japan, as well as to establish stronger ties with CARP LA’s sister organization, CARP Japan.

The trip has generated so much interest and enthusiasm that neighboring CARP Korea has decided to join in, too!

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WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP

Support Naoko and her team of CARP Ambassadors as they prepare to depart for Japan by donating to their international endeavor today.

DONATE