Northeast Subregional Director, Rev. Demian Dunkley, emceed the evening and welcomed the guests to a night of appreciation in the Grand room at the Manhattan Center. The venue was set up with a Step and Repeat photo backdrop, a mock tail bar and a gift table in the back for guests to receive their free Peace Starts With Me t-shirt.
Dr. Ki Hoon Kim, Regional Chairman of Family Federation North America, opened the banquet with welcoming remarks and a toast to the hard working individuals who prepared for the triumph of the Peace Starts With Me rally, many of whom were invited to the Thank You celebration. Dr. Kim said, “Because of the victory at Nassau Coliseum, we brought great victory to five nations, including Korea.” He then commenced the toast as it is done in his homeland.
Rev. Dunkley invited Bishop Jesse Edwards, New York ACLC Executive Director, to the stage who thanked True Mother for bringing thousands of people together as “one family under God.” Following Bishop Edwards was Archbiship Dr. Sulanch Lewis-Rose, ACLC National Co-President, who offered her gratitude to everyone who contributed to the rally and said, “I have never seen any churches work together for the kingdom of God such as now.”
Dr. Kim gave the keynote address for the night and spoke highly of True Mother’s determination and strength after traveling to five countries on her world tour. He said, “True Mother gives her all for the sake of the world. This is why we must unite and work for True Parents and Heavenly Parent.” Dr. Kim continued by saying we must share the Marriage Blessing with the world and bring glory back to God and True Parents, because “family is the fundament foundation for the sake of God’s kingdom.”
After two beautiful songs sung by Seiko Lee and a few performances by the Chambers Memorial Baptist Church, Archbishop George Augustus Stallings, Jr., Co-Chairman of ACLC, announced the True Family Values awards to 19 awardees who were recognized “because they exemplified the value of a true family,” said Archbishop Stallings.
The evening concluded with a group photo to present to True Mother, a raffle drawing, and the Chambers Memorial Baptist Church directing the music and choreography for the rest of the night.