CALENDAR OF EVENTS
UPF Founder’s Legacy Lauded by World Leaders
Written by Dr. William Selig, Deputy Director, UPF Office of Peace and Security Affairs-Washington, DC
Sunday, August 30, 2015
Cheongpyeong, Korea—On the last day of World Summit 2015, participants attended a ceremony marking the third anniversary of the passing of Dr. Sun Myung Moon.
The participants joined more than 20,000 people, from Korea and around the world, in the Cheongshim Peace World Center in the town of Cheongpyeong to attend a ceremony marking the end of the three-year mourning period for the UPF founder. Another 10,000 watched the ceremony at nearby facilities. The ceremony was broadcast live around the world and viewed by additional millions.
The emcee, Ryu Kyeong Seuk, president, FFWPU-Korea, announced various condolence letters, including a commemorative letter from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, which read:
“On the occasion of the third anniversary of the death of Mr. Moon Sun Myung, former president of the World [Universal] Peace Federation, I express profound sorrow to President Han Hak Ja and bereaved family members.Mr. Moon Sun Myung made lots of efforts for reconciliation and unity of the nation, reunification of the country and global peace.It is my hope that President Han Hak Ja and the bereaved family members will continue carrying forward the behest of Mr. Moon Sun Myung.”
Rev. Jun Seuk An, vice president, FFWPU International, gave the invocation, followed by the Commemorative Address of Dr. Sun Jin Moon, president, FFWPU International. She expressed her gratitude to her parents. “They have given their unconditional true love to the world. … He prayed and worked without ceasing … he emerged victorious.” To live for the sake of others was the core principle by which he lived to establish one family under God. Dr. Moon reminded the audience, “We each have a portion of responsibility to work together and transform this world.” We all have a divine light inside, she said, and, in memory of her father, she told everyone to turn to their neighbor and give them a big hug.
In his memorial address, the Honorable Soo Sung Lee, prime minister of Korea (1995-1997), said, “We had hoped that the 21st century would be a new millennium of peace, but instead, endless conflicts continue around the world.” Rev. Dr. Moon truly loved humanity and lived a filial life toward God, he said. “Rev. Moon may have ascended, but his works and words are etched in our hearts.” He encouraged everyone to “combine our strength to build a better world” by following the teachings of Rev. Dr. Moon and to “live for the sake of others.”
Another eulogy was given by His Excellency Anote Tong, president of the Republic of Kiribati, who said Rev. Dr. Moon’s works have reached to all corners of the world and that his legacy of one family under God will last for many generations. He expressed his condolences to Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon and said he is “honored to be associated with his [Rev. Dr. Moon’s] legacy as a co-recipient of the Sunhak Peace Prize.”
After a commemorative video on the life work of Rev. Dr. Moon, the main address was given by Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon. She began by leading everyone to sing “Sarang Hae,” a favorite song of her late husband. She described the long history of the providence to bring the messiah to this earth. “Unspeakable tears have been shed to restore humanity.” God selected the nation of Korea to give birth to his son and daughter, yet since Christianity did not welcome them, “they had to go the way of the servant of servants.” Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon tearfully recalled her husband and some of the activities and projects he initiated, including the International Peace Highway with its noble purpose to bring world unity, the speaking tours, and the work of CAUSA International and AULA to bring unity to Latin America. She recalled the words of the Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore, who described Korea as a lamp “waiting to be lighted once again for the illumination of the East.” That light represents the teachings of Dr. Sun Myung Moon, she said. Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon expressed her gratitude and love and encouraged everyone to complete their responsibility to help build the culture of heart.
A musical performance prepared by the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification-Japan was followed by three cheers of “Eog Mansei” led by Rev. Eiji Tokuno, national leader of FFWPU-Japan.
The World Summit group reconvened at the Cheon Jeong Gung museum for a commemorative luncheon hosted by Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon. The Founder’s burial site, known as the Bonhyangwon (“Original Hometown Garden"), is also located on the grounds.
Dr. Thomas Walsh, UPF International president, served as emcee. He greeted the more than 250 esteemed guests and participants gathered in “honor of the Founders and the legacy of peace they represent and to which their lives are a testament.” The invocation was given by Rev. Jesse Edwards, co-chair, American Clergy Leadership Conference.
Welcoming remarks representing the Founders’ family were given by Mrs. Hoon Sook Julia Moon, daughter-in-law of Rev. Dr. and Mrs. Moon and general director of the Universal Ballet Company. The three-year mourning period which is customary in the Orient ends on this day, she said, and although there is sadness that Dr. Sun Myung Moon is no longer on this earth, “we celebrate his joyful ascension to the highest realm of the spirit world.” She explained the three stages of life and said that, just as the time in the womb is preparation for life in the physical world, so our time in this world is preparation for life in the eternal world. “What we call death is really a transition from the physical to the spiritual world,” she said. Mrs. Moon thanked everyone for attending the third anniversary commemoration of Dr. Sun Myung Moon’s Seonghwa, or ascension, and implored all the participants to pursue the ideal of “one family under God.”
This was followed by a commemorative video entitled “The Path to Realizing a Global Community of Peace,” which included recent messages of Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon. There were several presentations: a plaque from the Washington Times Foundation fact-finding group, which included Congressman and Mrs. Dan Burton, Congressman and Mrs. Todd Tiahrt, Dr. Alexander Mansourov, Michael and Reiko Jenkins, Larry Moffitt, Thomas McDevitt, and Dr. Ki Hoon Kim. A doctorate honoris causa in humanities was given by President Nejama Bergman of the University of Commercial Sciences in Managua, Nicaragua. Ven. Dr. Bellanwila Wimalaratana presented a plaque on behalf of the Buddhist community of Sri Lanka along with Dr. Robert Kittle and Mrs. Ursula McLackland. Lastly, a plaque signed by the entire Senate of the Dominican Republic was presented by Senator Amarilis Santana.
Dr. Ki Hoon Kim, continental director, Family Federation for World Peace and Unification-North America, and chair of UPF-North America, gave the victory toast (three cheers of “Sungli”), which was followed by lunch.
Commemorative remarks were given by Hon. John Doolittle, U.S. House of Representatives (1991-2009). He spoke on the essential value of the family to peace, security and human development. “As life-long members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints—my wife and I share with you a view of life that is eternal. Because of that, we know that Father Moon is working with you and is present here today with us. Knowing that he lives on, we want to celebrate this third anniversary of his transition as a day to rededicate ourselves to God for the sake of all humanity. We share the values you teach and uphold that the family is the foundation for God’s love, that marriage between a man and woman is what God designed, and that this union is sacred and meant to be eternal.”
Entertainment was provided by violinist Elizabeth Woo, a Korean court dance by the Shattered Glass Music Group, and soprano Jamie Baer Peterson, who performed at the Assembly of the World's Religions (1985) and the inauguration of UPF (2005).
In the evening’s closing banquet, testimonies and concluding reflections included those from Dr. Rima Salah, member of the U.N. High Level Independent Panel on Peace Operations, Jordan. Dr. Rima expressed her appreciation to Rev. and Mrs. Moon and their mission to "love, forgive, negotiate, and build bridges, not walls." Dr. Raymond Mande, professor, University of Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo said, "We need prayers for Africa...We must carry out the building of peace for all humankind."
The following testimony typifies the participants’ experience. This was given by Dr. Mimmie Watts, board director, Western Health Hospital, Australia. “This World Summit gave me a deeper meaning about what is possible if people of faith come together. The caliber of speakers, their messages of love, home, caring for humanity and for each other were a clear demonstration of the work that many are doing through God’s guidance. I met many people whose messages inspired me, but I quote the first lady of Fiji, who said, ‘Our peace with God starts from within each and every one of us.’ … To everyone who made our stay in Korea a success and a beautiful experience, I say thank you.”
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