April 25th 2009, HQ Church, Seoul Korea
So, I asked him, “Kook Jin Hyung, how do you do it?” He said, “It is so simple.” (Laughter) This is what he said to me, “I teach them the Divine Principle in less than a minute.” I said, “What? You teach them the Divine Principle in less than a minute! How do you teach them the Divine Principle in less than a minute? I have studied the theological treaties of our theology. They are so complex. You have to go through the Principle of Creation, the Fall, the Parallels. You have to go through all that. How are you going to do that in less than a minute?” I said, “That’s impossible, that’s crazy!” He said to me, “True Parents teachings are so profound, so powerful. It actually can be explained in ONE sentence.” I said, “What? You can explain the teachings, the one thousand volumes of True Parents’ teachings in ONE sentence? Are you kidding me? How many speeches have we heard? So many texts, how is that possible?” He said again, “It’s so simple. Our entire teaching, 95% of our entire teaching, is about this, remember this sentence: Inherit the true love of God!” That’s the Principle. If you know that you know the Principle.
Yeon Ah Nim
Good afternoon, brothers and sisters! It is always great to see you all. Today it’s a little bit cloudy and windy outside but inside our heart there is still Heavenly Father’s love and comfort. It is always an honor to have you here in this sanctuary and for those who are joining via internet-wherever you are we are welcoming you as well. Welcome brothers and welcome sisters.
Hyung Jin Nim:
Welcome brothers and sisters! I just want to acknowledge our GAP students here. They are doing a 30 hour fasting condition. They are still middle and high school students and are doing that. They are now in their 26th hour! Let’s encourage them! Let’s give them a big round of applause! They are fighting for UC. We have to be proud of who we are. That’s so beautiful!
Let’s turn to the Cheon Seong Gyeong. Let me read at page 520. Father says: “Why do we like the family? Because it provides the foundation on which you can freely exchange love and happiness. Hence, people yearn for their hometown, the place where their parents and siblings lived.”
Brothers and sisters, when we hear these words we should remember that, although many times we feel alone and we live in the present, we are actually connected to our past. We are connected to our grandfather, our parents, to their grandfather and their parents. Through us comes a new history for our children and their children. It is so important that we see that we are the historical makers. We are the fruits of the past. Of course, we have to move beyond that into the age of blessing and open for our descendants a more beautiful future.
Father is asking us here to recall that homeland, the homeland where we once were free when we were young and had a true sense of wellbeing, belonging, a sense of purpose, a sense of true siblinghood and friendship. It is a place where we can truly experience so many different types of love, a place where, when we grow older in age and have children ourselves, we long to see and feel again. That place that True Father is telling us about is our precious family.
Many times in life it may not feel like that hometown. That’s okay. But it IS the place, where, when God is about to call us to be with Him up there, in our final hour, where we can look back and see the beauty of the family, the good times that we had, and maybe the times of challenge that we worked through together and became stronger together. That’s our place. That’s the place where God is teaching us and where He is showing His love for us.
Let’s give it up for our UC family all around the world! (Applause)
Once again, welcome to service, brothers and sisters. We love to see you and want to welcome all of you again. Please let us remember that, when we come here, we are connected to all the brothers and sisters out there. Take a look at them – they are looking at you. They are all watching us. Did you know that we have over ten thousand people that are tuning in every week? Although we may feel small here, we are in Korea, we are in the Holy Land, let’s remember that there are thousands of brothers and sisters that are here together with us. I want you to feel their heart today. Let us encourage them wherever they are.
We had a letter from a sister in Madrid who is all alone. But she is watching and she sees all of you and is feeling hope and strength again. That is truly amazing. When we come together then we are able to share, and we are able to remember who we are, we remember that we are connected by True Parents – there is something awesome in that. Let us give it up for all our brothers and sisters all around the world! (Applause)
Yeon Ah Nim’s Message:
There is a little restaurant where my husband and I sometimes go to. The shop owner is very nice and friendly. She knows that my husband is a minister because she asked us once. One day, not so far from Easter, she casually mentioned that he must be very busy with Easter coming soon. My husband said: “Actually, I’m a Unification Church minister.” She was a little surprised and asked if he was talking about the church of Rev. Moon. So he said: “Yes, in fact, I’m a SON of Rev. Moon.” So, she was even more surprised. And without hesitation, comfortably, he kept on saying that his father recently published his autobiography, that it was published by an outside company, that it was very easy to read and recommended to read it. She actually was quite open-minded about it. Whenever he has a chance to introduce himself as a Unification Church minister, Hyung Jin Nim is not hesitant or shy about it. He is very proud of it.
We are living in a great age. This is the age that our True Parents’ first disciples dreamt of. Yes, it is true, we still have obstacles to overcome but if we continuously are proud of who we are, are proud of our UC identity and develop it, develop our church, then I believe that the world will come and listen to us. They WILL come and WANT to join our church. I believe that!
Brothers and sisters I love you so much and we believe in you. Aju!
Prayer by Rev. Michael Brazil:
Dear Heavenly Father! We thank You so much for this day that You have given to us, that we are alive, that we can gather here from all parts of the world, that brothers and sisters are watching us right now and are with us from all around the world. We are so grateful that we have an incredible family, that wherever we go we have brothers and sisters whom we feel automatically connected to because of our True Parents and because of You.
We pray that You will be with us here today. Please come and join us and feel the spirit, heart and love that is here. How much we want to return to You! How much we want to live a life full of joy and hope, so that we can return that joy to You!
We thank You for the week that You have given to us. We thank You for the week that You already have prepared, knowing that it will be filled with great blessings, great new adventures and filled with challenges, challenges that will make us stronger and better sons and daughters. We want to truly offer ourselves to You today and ask that You help us to open our hearts and minds to receive the wonderful message that You have prepared for us. We most humbly offer all this to You, as brothers and sisters, as blessed central families from around the world. Aju!
Remarks about Prayer by Rev. Hyung Jin Moon:
Brothers and sisters, when Father speaks about how he prays to God, he says, he tries to console Him. So many people always request things from God. But Father says that as Unificationists we understand the trials and tribulations of God. We understand the suffering heart and the pain that He went through. And we understand how much He has longed for this day. Let’s let Him rest. Let’s let Him be at comfort and ease. Let’s not burden Him. Let’s comfort Him.
When we pray like that it requires a lot of strength. There are times that, when we pray, we may actually feel that we need God’s help. We may feel that we give our best to comfort God but we are going through this difficulty and it’s so hard to get through. But, you know, God always has people around us. I’m not only talking about people in the earthly world. I’m also talking about people in the spirit world that are with us.
For me, I know, it is my brother Young Jin Hyeong. He is one year older than me and he has helped me through so many things. Sometimes I didn’t want to burden the heart of God. Sometimes God was too big and I couldn’t really feel His presence. Then I can lean on my friend, my brother, and I say: “Just help me out a bit here. I need your help and guidance. I need you to be with me through the coming days. I need you to be with my kids. I need you to be with them when they are driving to school and I need you to make sure that the guy on the other side of the street is not crashing into their car.”
I found that our friends, those Abel angels – that’s what I call them, our Abel good spirits – can really give us strength and help, at times when we feel that God is somewhat distant, unseen and invisible.
Today I ask you to remember your Abel angel. Remember that person when you think about all the people that have gone to the spirit world. You will know when you close your eyes and think about all those people and you try to sense with your heart, you will know who that person is that has the greatest heartistic relation with you. For me, I know that it is my brother. What we have to know then is that we didn’t choose that relationship, we are merely discovering it. We have to know that God actually prepared that for us. He prepared that person to be with us. Even though they leave they are still with us. And He asks us to rely on them in times that we need to.
What we want to do nowadays in our services is pray for our Abel angel, our Abel brother or Abel sister who is up there. We can say prayers of encouragement but we can also say: “I need your help. I need strength this week. Be with me more closely this week.”
So we want to take this brief prayer time to pray with our Abel angel, just to acknowledge that they are here. We want to acknowledge that they are in our life and helping us. Let’s take this time to pray and give them strength and ask for help if we need it. Let’s take this time to open our hearts to that person that you know that is with you.
We always like to start with something a little interesting. I heard this little story. Bill was having a little trouble raising his son. You know, the son would not listen to him, giving him trouble, not really paying attention in school. He was really giving him a lot of heartbreak. One day Bill was in the Bible study class. They were discussing the miracles in the Bible and the pastor was there and he was asking the people in the class,”What were some of the great miracles in the Bible?” So they were discussing Moses transforming the sticks into snakes, or opening up the Red Sea, parting the Red Sea. Another congregant said, “You know I really think the best part in the Bible is Jesus walking on the water, healing the sick, opening the eyes of those who are blind.”
But Bill heard this whole lecture, and towards the end he got up and said, “You know, all of you are wrong. The greatest miracle in the Bible was when Joshua told his son to stand still and he listened.”
Let’s stand up and do TP’s declaration …
Main sermon by Hyung Jin Nim:
Brothers and sisters, I want to talk to you today about being brave in sharing about True Parents. This is a message that I will read every week. True Father has asked us visit Guri, which is one of our training centers here in Korea. We have about a thousand two hundred people from either Japan or Korea that come and listen to the original root Divine Principle. President Yoo is heading that and he is teaching the Principle there. We have time to talk with the members, myself and Kook Jin Hyung. Kook Jin Hyung, of course, shares with them some messages.
I‘d like actually to share with you all and also tomorrow with our Korean congregation the message we have been talking about. Right now we are in the age of liberation and complete release. This is the age after the coming of heaven. We know that the physical and spiritual world want to fulfill God’s purpose, and we know that True Parents have said that by the year 2013 we are to establish Cheon Il Guk.
But at the first sound of that we asked the question, even in my heart, “What is that?” For example, how are we going to accomplish that? It sounds so impossible. How are we going to establish a nation? No nation would give us permission to set up a nation, and I used to think in various ways how it would look.
What would a nation, when we are talking about Cheon Il Guk, entail (What is a Cheon Il Guk nation all about)? Are we proposing to set up a country with its own autonomous government? You know, we are still very immature at management. That is becoming more transparent, that is becoming more professional. (But) we still have many things that we have to fix and improve.
Are we going to buy an island? Many times we think of Jardim, in South America, where we would do mass migration there. Is that the CIG we are talking about? Many things we have thought about in our own heart. There is one refreshing speaker that I really love when he speaks. He is my brother, so I love him, I love him. He is so refreshing because he is so blunt and honest.
Actually Kook Jin Hyung spoke in 2006 at the leaders’ meeting and he asked the question, “How do we make CIG?” Many said we have to buy Mongolia, something like that and set up a nation … maybe ask for approval like the Native Americans that have their own state, their own autonomous government. Maybe that’s what we are going to do, the native Unificationists.
But Kook Jin Hyung said, “It’s simple, it’s so simple. Why do you call America a Christian nation? Because the majority of people in America say that they are Christians. So what do we have to do if we want to make a nation in a democratic world? If 50% of the populations are Unificationists, then there is a nation.” (Applause). There’s some clarity!
The first time we heard that we were thinking, “What? What is he talking about? Wait a minute, 50% of the population is a huge group of Unificationists. When we are proud of our faith, when we are growing as a church then we have more and more say in a democratic society. Actually when I heard that, it totally blew me away. I was not even thinking in that direction.
He went on to explain that in the democratic world, in the democratic globalized world, you cannot go about conquering other nations claiming them to be yours. You cannot go about invading other territories. At least, that is not what we are going to do. We are not going to do that, brothers and sisters, right? (Laughter) Let’s be clear about that. We are not going to do that, right?
But in a democratic society we can honestly, we can proudly, we can legally share our tradition. We have freedom of religion in a democratic society. It is that clause that protected us as a young movement that was growing in Korea, Japan, and America. That freedom of religion clause is something that protected our tradition in the beginning. It is the clause that in a democratic society allows us to share our faith. And that is an amazing clause. Father has said [that] in America, because they had the religious freedom clause, that America truly was set up by the hand of God. And this made a lot of sense to me.
The next logical connection would be that our task is to share our faith. But how do we share our faith? We try to witness to people but it doesn’t work. We try to teach DP but it doesn’t work as well as it used to work like in the 70’s, after the wars, World War I and World War II, when everybody had it in his or her mind (was searching for something).
How do we share? How can we share our faith? We have thousands of religious treaties and texts, complicated works and thesis and papers that explain the exposition of the Divine Principle, that explain the concepts and ideologies there in and all that kind of stuff. We have developed great treatises and explanations about all the great theological traditions. The brilliant theological DP is very, very complex. It is very theologically advanced.
I had the chance at the Divinity School when I was at Harvard to study different religious texts, and when you compare these religious texts, the other founders‘ religious texts (some of the founders didn’t create religious texts but some of them did), when you see them comparatively, DP is so systematic. It has a tremendously systematic view of history, a providential course that it applies throughout its texts systematically.
Even my New Testament scholar and New Testament professor at Harvard, a very famous professor, one who is top in his field, and my friend who was a Ph.D. graduate, they used to talk about how advanced the Principle was, that it’s quite an impressive theological text when you look at it theologically.
But the question is: Why can’t we witness? Why do we have such a hard time witnessing? When we look at the evidence, the statistics of our church in Korea, for example, from 1960 to 2005, (I see that) at the end of the 1960s our church was at 16,000 members, that is people who attended church. In 2005 the church was at 14,000 members.
Even if you are not good at maths, you can see what happened. In thirty years we have had a decrease in our church. We have had no church growth; we’ve had negative church growth. So, this is actually the reality of our situation. This is also the case in America. This is not the case in Japan, where we’ve continued to have membership growth but there are other issues (problems) in Japan that exist.
So I had a very interesting desire in my heart, (to find out) how to solve this puzzle. How do we talk about our faith in a way that is relevant, that is meaningful (for the people)? How do we witness? How do we share our faith? And so I asked the person that I love listening to, Kook Jin Hyung, because he is such a good witnesser. My brother Kook Jin Hyung has witnessed to Mr. Bang. He was the director in the KCIA, he was a major government official, he was the president of the Korean Hanjin corporation, a construction company and architectural development company.
So he has an incredible career, he has so many contacts, and Kook Jin Hyung was able to witness to him. Now he is the vice-chairman in the Tongil Group and he is also our finance minister here at the HQ’s church, helping us with transparent financial and professional management. So, Kook Jin Hyung has witnessed to him.
He has also witnessed to company presidents who have now joined our church and who are now tithing community members. He has witnessed to professional lawyers, CPA’s that have worked in the big five companies of Korea (Samsung, Deawoo, etc.). These brothers and sisters come to church! Maybe not every week – they are busy – but they come, they regularly contribute to the church. Many of the facilities that you see, the café, the facilities that your children enjoy downstairs, the playground, the TV monitors, all that is from them. A lot of their contributions went into rebuilding this church. So in fact we have to feel very thankful to these new brothers and sisters who come in.
So I had the chance to have this conversation with Kook Hyung. To make a long story short: I asked, “How do you do it, how do you witness to these people? Here we are in the church, and we are all struggling to share our faith. We bring them to this and that education and they say, ‘I can respect Rev. Moon,’ and that’s it. And then we have to invite them back, buy them another dinner, and do the same old thing over and over. How do you witness so that they actually become owners, that they become contributing members, investing in our blessed children, investing in our education, investing in our facilities? How do we do it so that they become owners of the church who want to build it, who want to help it succeed? We haven’t been able to get to that stage.”
So, I asked him, “Kook Jin Hyung, how do you do it?” He said, “It is so simple.” (Laughter) This is what he said to me, “I teach them the Divine Principle in less than a minute.” I said, “What? You teach them the Divine Principle in less than a minute! How do you teach them the Divine Principle in less than a minute? I have studied the theological treaties of our theology. They are so complex. You have to go through the Principle of Creation, the Fall, the Parallels. You have to go through all that. How are you going to do that in less than a minute?” I said, “That’s impossible, that’s crazy!” He said to me, “True Parents teachings are so profound, so powerful. It actually can be explained in ONE sentence.” I said, “What? You can explain the teachings, the one thousand volumes of True Parents’ teachings in ONE sentence? Are you kidding me?
How many speeches have we heard? So many texts, how is that possible?” He said again, “It’s so simple. Our entire teaching, 95% of our entire teaching, is about this, remember this sentence: Inherit the true love of God!” That’s the Principle. If you know that you know the Principle.
And he said, “You know, True Father defines True Love not just as a love that we feel, like a passionate love. True Father defines true love as God’s Essence, as His Divinity. He defines true love as a selfless love that can bring Satan to voluntary surrender. If you inherit that true love then you reach the divine value of God and you become an equal partner. And there in lies the Principle. Of course that does not mean we become almighty, omnipotent and powerful, but in terms of love we share on an equal level.”
When I thought about this we had a little discussion. For thousands of years there have been many theologies that have existed, different religions, etc, and most of the time we have understood God to be almighty, omnipotent, the creator of the universe, swirling the planets into existence. And from mankind’s perspective, it’s awesome to worship that kind of deity, that kind of God. He is so powerful. If He can whirl the creation and whirl the cosmos into existence than He can help our child get a B+ on a test or He can help us pay our rent, or He can help us, you know, get a promotion at work. That’s how we can think. It is awesome to worship such a powerful God.
But then he said, “Flip it (turn it around). Why don’t you think about it from GOD’s perspective? God is almighty, all-powerful, all His children worshipping and praising Him, saying, ‘God, help me get that B+ on my paper, or help me get that promotion.’ When you think about it from God’s perspective, He is lonely, all alone, almighty and all-powerful … and all alone.
It is very simple: Inherit the true love of God. That is what Adam and Eve had to do, inherit the true love of God, become equal partners and through that establish God’s family, nation, world, cosmos, etc. Because True Parents have revealed that to humankind and have inherited the true love of God, they fulfilled exactly what Adam and Eve were supposed to do. We know that from our faith.
By inheriting God’s true love and not Satan’s false love, which is self-centered and self-serving, they’ve become equal partners to God. Thus we say they liberated God because He’s been lonely, and now He has an equal partner to whom He can speak and with whom He can share His heart. That’s our faith in a nutshell. That’s why they’re the Peace King, that’s why they’re the liberators of God’s heart, and that’s why it is the age of liberation, etc. etc. etc.
So teaching is very simple. When you go to the café here, you see all kinds of quotations of Father, but in the Growth Stage Temple, we’re going to have this all over the place, “Inherit the True Love of God,” because actually when you think about it, inheriting the True Love of God is connected to every single thing in the Principle. If you think about it, from inheriting the True Love of God comes man’s purpose, the purpose of mankind, which is to bring joy to God. Inherit His true love and then bring joy to Him.
From inheriting the True love of God comes the slogan that we know, “One family under God”, for if you don’t inherit the True Love of God, you can’t create God’s family. From inheriting the true love of God comes the four great realms of heart that we know, our parents, husband and wife, siblings and children. From inheriting the true love of God come the three kingships of the grandparents, the parents and the children. From inheriting the true love of God comes the four position foundation, on the individual level, family, society, nation, and the world.
And if you look at the Divine Principle, at least the one that’s in the 3-colored sections, the English version is 411 pages long. But 350 plus pages are devoted to the fall and restoration. 340 pages out of 411 pages are dedicated to the Fall and Restoration! If you think about it, the fall is very simple (to explain). It’s simply inheriting false love, selfish, self-serving love. The process of restoration is the process of preparing a foundation for the one who can come and restore the original human dignity lost by the first ancestors. Simply put, it’s inheriting the true love of God.”
So, this is what Kook Jin Hyeong explained to me. He said, “When I talk to these company presidents, when I talk to these professional people and we have discussions about economics and we talk about politics, at some point they ask what I believe in, ‘What do you believe in as Unificationist?’ “
And at that point many of us are befuddled. We don’t know how to answer, “What do you believe in as a Unificationist?” “Oh,uh, ah….we believe in….ah….I think…..Rev. Moon….some….you know….we believe that he….there is this world peace thing….and there is this interfaith thing we do….there is this political thing we do here…..” (Laughter). We don’t know how to answer the question!! How do you answer it? Fast! How do you answer it? Quickly! Less than one minute! Teach them DP! How do you answer it so quick that it puts right to the core and anything else they hear after that can be connected to it? Very simple! This is what Kook Jin Hyung said: “Inherit the true love of God.”
We had a lot of great minds in our tradition, explaining the Principle, explaining a complex text in even more complexity, which is good, theologically. I was a theologian one time, so I understand that world.
But he said: “Look, you have to able to teach it more simply. It’s too complicated. When I’m trying to communicate something I think of a way to make it simpler, so that I can communicate it more quickly. When I have a conversation and suddenly we start talking about what Rev. Moon actually believes, I say that it is quite simple, that he believes in inheriting the true love of God. And he defines true love. He defines it as the essence of God, the divinity of God. That divinity is selfless, and that divinity can bring even the worst evil to a natural surrender. Our task is to inherit that, and if we do that we’re going to create the true love of God on the individual, family, national level. That’s our vision for the world. Simple! Anything from the dual characteristics of God to the purpose of Creation, to the Fall and Restoration, Moses’ course, Jesus’ course, all can be continued and connected back to that ONE teaching, inherit the true love of God.”
Brothers and sisters! That is why it’s so important now in this age to remember and acknowledge and understand the value of our True Parents. It’s also now so important for us to share our True Parents with the world and to let other people become filial children of True Parents.
But then you might say, “I try to witness and bring people to the church, and I don’t know what to do next. They come sometimes to this education or that program, and they say, ‘It was great’, but it didn’t work out so well.”
Brothers and sisters, we’re now developing many many new strategies that have worked in the past. This week, we introduced the Ancestral Tree method, which is a witnessing method that has been used in Japan. It’s so important because it opens one’s understanding beyond oneself, that you’re tied to your ancestors and you’re also tied to your descendents. It asks us to be responsible. We look at recurring patterns of family trees. A parent might have a child who may be having trouble studying, or having problems working at school and not focusing. We might start condemning that child, without understanding the historical perspective, that our ancestry is connected to this child.
So the Kagyedo method shows through real case examples, that people with issues are connected back. One of the ancestors, for example, the mother-in-law of the parent, wanted to study very greatly, but in that period of time, since she was a woman, was not able to study. She was discriminated against. That resentment continued through to her child. In the DP we understand that in the indemnity conditions section.
Even this week we had a revival, where we introduced new non-unificationists to the tradition. We had three different lectures on principle. We also had, after that, our director of the 21 Cheon Bok Center, which is the Heavenly Fortune Center, that is located in the Dowon Bldg. One of our directors there gave brief presentations about the importance of understanding our ancestry in understanding our lives and our children’s lives and their future. Those courses are available for our congregation and for those people who are new to our tradition. So we have a developing witnessing program, an educational program, consultation program.
In our tradition we have Divine Principle lectures but the timing is very important. Sharing the Diving Principle is very empowering and it’s very powerful, but if the person is not able to digest it, then they can’t understand its value. So in our case, many of our brothers and sisters have brought new people to church who, when you try to bring them back, say, “I’m busy this weekend,” this kind of thing.
But now there’s a clear second step. Bring them to church, get them connected, and treat them as a brother or a sister, but then they also start learning, not just DP, but about their own lives in connection to providence. So the 21 Cheon Bok Center is open to all of our brothers and sisters to understand what’s happening with this new witnessing program. We definitely want to encourage you all to check it out, and you can register and see what’s happening there. We had about 15 new people come the day before, from all around the area. We had one of the owners of the restaurant near here that came to church. They really enjoyed it. They not only listened to the principle, but they also learned how that applies to their lives directly, to their past and their future.
So we have these various things that are improving in our church. And if you think about it, and look at any nation where there’s a Unification Church, there’s no situation in the world right now better than our Korean Unification Church situation. In the last year we’ve had over 85 articles in all the medial outlets in Korea, on the TV, newspaper, internet etc, and all of them without exception have been positive about the changes happening in our movement. Let’s give it up for U.C.
We have now the autobiography of our True Parents, which is a national bestseller. It was the number one best seller in Pusan. Let’s give it up for True Parents. We have a whole new church leadership. We have professionals who have been extremely successful outside, who are now in our teams, in our church leadership. We have a more accountable and transparent church. Every two months we give transparent accounting, so our finance minister Bang will tell the congregation every single thing about what the church is doing and will show the financial statements, because he’s a professional at that. We’ve had elections to elect leaders into leadership, first time – that’s a big change – and we had elections to elect women into leadership. That’s a huge change in our church!
Nationwide – last year – we’ve had U.C. attendance rise for the very first time in over 30 years. We’ve had an increase in church attendance, in tithing, and we have had an increase in ownership, people who really feel, “I’m going to invest. I’m going to make this succeed.”
We have to be proud of who we are, proud of our faith. It’s a free democratic country, and we can share our tradition. When you share your tradition, you’re not doing anything wrong. You don’t have to feel guilty about sharing your faith. And when we do that with confidence, it starts to show.
Now, because of the CBG providence, we’re moving into the growth stage CBG, right here in the holy land, in the capital city, in the soul of the Holy Land. But it’s (always) the same thing. We’re going to be tested there, and I’ll tell you how. The question is, “Can we actually move the holy land and the world to come to acknowledge and believe in True Parents? Can we do it?”
We are still being persecuted. I was just talking to the director of our music team. She has an incredible career. She graduated from Berkeley Music School in the States, from where she came back. She is a professional producer. Together with her brother she has her own studio. She is a very talented young second generation. Recently, she was contacted by an upcoming movie, to be the musical director of that movie.
We were all excited about that, and we encouraged her. We want her to develop her professional career. She went in to sign the contract, and the president came in and said, “Why don’t you sit down. You know, I’m a very devout Christian. I didn’t know that you were a Unificationist.” When he didn’t know that she was a Unificationist, he enjoyed her music very much. But then he said, “Because of that, I don’t think I can work with you.” Another example of religious discrimination, religious persecution.
Another blessed child, a certified CPA, works in our office here. He told us that his high school friends from twenty years, who are all professionals in different fields, asked him where he is working. When he said, “I’m working in the church, trying to build it up,” they said, “I could TOLERATE you being a Unificationist, but I really don’t want to continue this relationship because you are working in the church.” So although this is the best situation in all the churches that we have in the world, right now, we’re still being persecuted.
In the Old Testament period we know that people in Israel had to enter into Canaan. They had to defeat the kings of Canaan. They had to turn the temporary tabernacle into a permanent temple for God, which would be a foundation to receive the Messiah, and then the foundation from which the Messiah would work to the world. That’s what’s happening with the growth stage CBG. That’s going to be the foundation for the perfection-level CBG. That’s where we’re going to be able to preach True Parents’ message to the world. That’s where we’re going to be able to stand as Unificationists, that’s where we’re going to be able to speak and declare our faith.
But again, we’re going to have opposition. We’re going to have people who discriminate against us for believing what we believe. It’s important for us to be confident in who we are. And it’s important for us to be confident and to believe in ourselves and in the tradition we’re from and to believe that we have amazing things to offer to the world. If we don’t have that confidence we will not be able to witness.
The reason why Kook Jin Hyung is able to witness so well is that he’s a real professional. He is accomplished in whatever he does. People already respect him. He tells them, “Yes, I’m a Unificationist, and I’m proud of it. The things that I’ve learned made me and helped me succeed.” So that’s even more important. The people he has witnessed see that he is a professional person. They see that he’s talented and that he has cultivated himself to be all that he can be. And on top of that he’s proud of who he is. He’s proud of whose he is, and he’s proud of the Unification tradition. Let’s give it up for the Unification Church, brothers and sisters.
So now is our time as Unificationists. But we will not be able to win over the challenges of this time by the old methods. Because we were so persecuted we had to withdraw into our movement. We were being attacked from every side. If you hear stories about the early days, my God! They were totally persecuted. People were throwing rocks and beating them because they were Unificationists.
But don’t think such things happened only 40 years ago. We had one blessed young sister, she was basically surrounded by four young Christians that were her friends, and they mobbed her and persecuted her and said, “If you go to the Unification Church you’ll go to hell!” Let’s not think that this was only 40 years ago. This exists today.
It’s important for us to be proud of who we are. If we don’t stand true to who we are, nobody will defend us. Nobody will be proud of who we are. It is important for us to show confidence in who we are, believed in who we are, and help our movement succeed.
When I heard these stories that have just recently happened, even though there’s so much change, I said, “No more! I’m sick and tired of being bullied. No more!” We’re going to be proud of the U.C. We’re going to be compassionate. We’re going to practice true love and inherit God’s true love, and we’re going to grow this church, and we’re going to be successful. We’re going to speak True Parents’ message to the nation and we’re going to speak it to the world. It is now U.C.’s time, and let’s give it up once again for the U.C. brothers and sisters! It is now our time. I’m tired of being bullied.
I do believe that if we go forth with that kind of confidence, if we go forth with strength in our faith, if we go forth with understanding (our teaching) – our teaching is actually quite simple, and we can teach it quickly – if we’re proud of our teaching, and proud of what we believe, and we share that with confidence and are good and excellent in whatever we do, we’ll find ourselves with more victory, more illumination and more peace, and we’ll live that blessed life that True Parents have blessed us to live. Let’s give it up for God and True Parents.
Final Prayer by Hyung Jin Nim:
Heavenly Father, thank You so much for being with us today. We want to declare that we are Unificationists. We are not going to be scared anymore of who we are. We are not going to feel guilty when we share our faith, thinking we are doing something wrong or that it is unpopular. We are going to be proud of who we are.
We, on the ground, live our lives, we take our children to school, we try to work with other people and at times our brothers and sisters, we, are persecuted and discriminated against, for what we believe. We know it’s so easy to just say: “Alright, then I won’t talk about what I believe!” But, Father, let us be skillful, let us be wise. Let us not be foolish and walk around with loud speakers and try to create havoc and chaos. Father, let us be wise, proud and passionate of who we are.
When we are challenged and when we are being discriminated against, let us not strike back and act foolishly, childishly and emotionally. But let us do as Jesus did, as Martin Luther King did, as True Father did his entire life. Let us say: “You may strike me now but you will not win in the end. You have the losing strategy in striking us. But we have the winning strategy in trying and living to inherit God’s true love.” Let us be proud of who we are and what we are here to do.
We pray that You may be with each and every one of our brothers and sisters here today. Give them strength and faith. Give them life in their walk with You and let us realize that we are not alone. We have angels and brothers and sisters that are with us. They are walking together in this life of faith with us. Let us know today that we can be proud of who we are. We can be proud in sharing True Parents and in sharing our faith. We can be proud of ourselves as Unificationists.
Let us know that we are relevant and that it IS our time. You prepared so much and we are ready. We are ready now not to be bullied anymore. But we are not going to fight the bully with fists. We will fight them with true love.
We thank You so much for giving us this day, where You challenge us once again to see ourselves in a new light. We pray that You may fill our hearts today, be with us this coming week and send those Abel angels to be with us, protect us and protect our children. We want to pray for them right now. We want to pray that they are empowered and rejuvenated, that they don’t get tired. We pray that they are also spiritually rejuvenated.
Thank You for preparing this wonderful time together. We pray that we can truly move forward to bring our tradition to the world stage, to be relevant and to offer CIG to You.
We pray this in our own names as blessed central families, as one. Aju!
Transcribed by: Prof. Robin Debacker/ Mr. Jean Debacker / Mrs. Regina Shin
Edited by: Rev. Bruno Klotz