Contributed by Soyeon Kim
The National Ministry Team held its monthly meeting for June on May 31, 2017 as they focused on True Mother’s upcoming address at Madison Square Garden. With each presentation given by representatives from Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) affiliates as well as Unificationists from various parts of America, a sense of determination and gratitude filled the room in preparation for the momentous summer event.
Emceed by FFWPU USA Vice President Miilhan Stephens and opened in prayer by Rev. Carol Pobanz, the meeting proceeded with a reading from the Chambumo Gyeong by Katarina Connery, vice president of Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP) USA. In the excerpt, seen below, True Father describes the importance of achieving unity between different generations as a foundation for the success of both:
“In Korea, my purpose in working at Yonsei University and Ehwa Woman’s University was to connect the first and second generations based on the second generation. From a vertical perspective, the first generation, Christians, and the second generation, the students of the two schools, have a parent-child relationship. Horizontally, the two schools have a relationship as partners. We can consider the horizontal relationship between Yonsei University and Ehwa Woman’s University like the position of Adam and Eve, man and woman, and the second generation as in the position of the children. If the second generation had united with me, the Parent, then not only the children of the second generation but also Christians in the position of the first generation could have united with me.
“According to Principle of Restoration, if the first generation and the second generation become completely one, Cain is brought to surrender. This is because the second generation would stand on God’s side and not on Satan’s side. Had the second generation come into the realm of God’s protection, then since the second generation, the realm of Abel, was united with me, on that day the first generation would have naturally become one with me as well. The first generation of Israelites died in the wilderness, but now both generations would be on God’s side and in the realm of His protection. Hence, both the first and second generations could have entered the land of Canaan together. This is the Principle. In this way I tried to connect the first and second generations of Christianity centering on my work at these two Korean universities, but the Ehwa Woman’s University and Yonsei University incident occurred.”
Miilhan Stephens was especially moved by this passage, remarking, “If we could unite the first and second generations, nothing could stop us; Cain and Abel could be reunited.” He clarified, “And Cain does not refer to a person or a group of people—it refers to a type of nature in all of us that will fade in proportion to our unity with one another and True Parents.”
Dr. Ki Hoon Kim, Continental Chairman of North America for FFWPU, later teared up as he spoke about True Mother’s heart in deciding to speak at Madison Square Garden:
“Think about True Mother—what kind of confidence she has. She has God. Nothing else. Why does she want to carry a heavier burden on her shoulders by coming back to America when she faces all kinds of challenges? Nothing other than this: for the sake of this country, for the sake of America. Nothing else….Only one thing: to save this country because God prepared this country for the past 2000 years. This country was prepared by God for the sake of True Parents. True Parents cannot go to any other nation besides this country, America.”
Dr. Michael Balcomb, President of FFPWU USA, contextualized the significance of the Madison Square Garden event, defining it as “the introduction of God’s only begotten daughter to the world.” He reiterated that the event will take place on July 15, 2017, and that the first part of the event will be a speech by True Mother, while the second part will include a Hyo Jeong Concert. Dr. Balcomb continued to set a determined tone for the event, encouraging others to set even bigger goals than filling Madison Square Garden for next year.
Inspired by the words of Dr. Kim and Dr. Balcomb, Archbishop Dr. Sulanch Lewis-Rose, National Co-President of American Clergy Leadership Conference, declared her hope to bring 3000 people to the July event. “On that day,” she proclaimed, “We will realize that True Mother is my mother, your mother, our mother.”
In preparation for the event, Teresa Rischl, president of the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP), and Rev. Bruce Grodner, national executive director of ACLC, discussed their organizations’ mobilization plans. Dr. Tyler Hendricks also gave a brief overview of the ways in which the 1998 Marriage Blessing Ceremony—also held in Madison Square Garden—was successful.
Rev. Hiroshi Inose provided a report on the third 7-Day Japanese IPEC Revival Workshop from the previous week. He expressed his appreciation for the International Peace Education Center (IPEC), praising the center for being conducive to feeling the love of God. Rev. Inose also commended Dr. Kim’s message to the participants of the workshop, in which he took the time to convey True Mother’s heart for the people of the world.
FFWPU USA Vice President Mari Curry then reported on the 1975 missionaries reunion at the Unification Theological Seminary (UTS) this past weekend. Specifically, she was amazed by the reinvigoration felt by the missionaries through their reunion. One missionary noted, “I thought we were being called to retire, but instead we were here to re-fire!”
Koichi Nakai then thanked everyone involved in preparing for Family Fest 2017, which took place this past Sunday as a celebration of the 55th Day of All True Things.
In our international movement news, one of the highlights from the past week was a special five-day meeting among Japanese, Korean, and American delegations with True Mother in Korea. Tasnah Moyer of the national Young Adult Ministry spoke about her experience, from her initial hesitance to go to Korea, to her calling to meet and speak with True Mother, to her realization of the importance of connecting to the heart of True Mother. This trip to Korea fortified not only her connection in heart with True Mother, but also with the other American delegates. “It is through the connection of heart with True Mother that we can really be one family under God,” Tasnah reflected.