"Why don't you come with me on a 10-day trip to South America?"
This was what I heard from the lips of Father at East Garden on the morning
of July 24 as I was discussing with him this year's UTS graduates.
That same evening, I found myself seated right next to Father in the first-class section of an airplane bound for Buenos Aires. There were two other people with us, but they were his staff. To my surprise, I was the only special guest to be invited by Father. On the airplane he was sometimes seriously praying and reading the Korean text of Mother's speech being delivered in Korea. Otherwise, he and I were talking together, eating together, laughing together, and napping together. He was particularly happy to hear how I have tried my best thus far to meet with the Messiah in his absence and also about my decision last year to strongly stand up to support the Church leadership for the successful accomplishment of a seemingly impossible task of the 3.6 million couple blessing.
As soon as the airplane arrived in Buenos Aires the next morning, we went to see some land which Tiempos del Mundo is planning to buy as the future site of its headquarters. We also went to a beautiful 10-story office building which Father is planning to purchase. Another place we visited was the present headquarters of Tiempos del Mundo, where the staff of the newspaper welcomed us. As we were visiting those places, I couldn't stop crying because I felt that Father's love towards humanity made him courageous enough to overcome all barriers to launch such a huge and expensive project in this distant place on the globe. Later, during the dinner time, he asked me what had been going on in my mind during the day, and I explained how I had been crying. In response, he tenderly encouraged me to deepen my knowledge of the love of God even more than before.
The next three days we went fishing on the Parata River in Corrientes, Argentina. We caught dorados (resembling salmon) and bogas (similar to carp). The river is very wide (10 km) and there are a countless number of small islands in it. Looking at the shiny surface of the water of the very wide river from our fishing boat during the day, I thought that Father, too, must have looked at the same water here many times, thinking prayerfully about how to save the whole world quickly. So, looking at the water made me feel the heart of Father, and led me to make up my mind to become like Father in bearing the cross for the liberation of the miserable humanity of the world.
Thinking about that point during the dinner time one evening, I looked at Father and almost burst into tears. I managed to control myself in front of him but he must have spiritually felt something from me. Perhaps because of that, the next morning he told me to give a testimony in front of everybody. My testimony was about my experience of the unbreakable love of God in the midst of bearing the unbearable and after my testimony was over, he said that he could already tell something from my eyes even without the testimony. Later on the same day, he again told me to give a testimony.
On July 28, we flew to Montevideo, Uruguay by a small airplane owned by Father. It has only four passenger seats. I was grateful that he gave me one of those precious seats prior to anyone else there.
The next day, a number of leaders came to see Father at Victoria Plaza Hotel. They included the national messiah of Uruguay, the continental director of South America, and the presidents of various church businesses such as bank, hotel, newspaper, construction, and heavy industry. They were all Korean leaders. They made reports to Father and asked for his advice and approval. My observation told me that he was able to guide those people very properly because of divine intervention which came through his serious desire to love God's will and the restoration of the world. So, while observing, I told God in my prayer that I want to become like Father in this regard.
In the mid-afternoon of that day, Father suddenly announced to all the leaders there that he would like to take me to Punta del Este, one of the most famous sightseeing places in South America. That place is just two hours away from Montevideo. All the leaders followed Father and me, driving two hours. I felt a special treatment of love. On our way to that place, therefore, I told the whole cosmos that I would definitely bring and share this love from Father to all people, and especially to miserable people, for the purpose of completing the restoration work as soon as possible. The lyrical background music from the car stereo was helping to spiritually uplift me as I was dialoguing with the cosmos that way.
Four year undergraduate college at UTS
On July 30, we left Montevideo for the New Hope Farm in Jardim, Brazil. Again, we used Father's small airplane. On the airplane Father asked me if Punto del Este became a memorable place for me. I told him that I was determined to share his love for me with the whole cosmos for its restoration to be done as soon as possible. It was at that time that he told me that UTS should create a 4-year college of theological education for the second generation.
In the evening, we took a taxi from Campo Grande to the New Hope Farm, at which we arrived at 10 p.m.. I saw there about 20 beloved UTS graduates of 1996 working to construct new buildings. I was moved with their sun-burnt yet bright faces. We stayed there only for a few hours.
We left the New Hope Farm very early in the morning of July 31 to go to Salobra. In that small town in Brazil, Father owns a farm and a small hotel. But even more exciting there is a swampy jungle area in which people can enjoy fishing. We stayed there for two days of fishing. I really enjoyed fishing there not only because I was able to catch rare fish but because I was able to see various animals and plants in the swamp area. I saw alligators and rare colorful birds. I heard the orchestra performance of insects and birds, while quietly fishing. I also saw Father just focusing on fishing, perhaps thinking about the salvation of the world. I found him to be a very mystical person at that kind of moment. After the fishing, Father spoke to us. I was overwhelmed with the dignity of God which I felt from him as he was speaking. At that time he told me that I must become the temple of God.
On August 2 and 3, we were in Sao Paulo. Father spoke to many Brazilian members there. Again I felt the vibration of love from his speech. At that time he told me to give a testimony. My testimony made many of the members there cry. Father commented on my testimony, saying, "This man renewed UTS in three years."
August 3 was the final day of our 10-day trip to South America. On that day I was struggling with the question of whether I should ask Father to have a picture taken only with me before the end of the trip. My final decision, however, was that I wouldn't ask until after I victoriously help to restore the whole miserable world. I decided that being physically close to Father through a picture or two without true victory might make me an arrogant person who cannot move the world. In making this decision, I felt that the miserable world was awaiting salvation, and I wept out of my love for the world. Paradoxically, I felt so close to Father this way. This happened in my bedroom just before lunch. I wiped my tears and went to Father's dining room to eat lunch with him. I behaved as if nothing had happened. But as soon as he saw me, he said, "What happened?" Father already knew what had happened. This time I burst into tears without being able to control myself and said, "I felt Father's love for the world."
In the evening of that day, we went to the airport of Sao Paulo, being ready to return to America. At the airport, I saw many, many tourists and passengers standing or walking, and I felt that they were awaiting my work of restoration. Again, I wept. At that time, Father told me that I should be seated right next to him on the airplane bound for New York.
Reflecting on what happened during the trip, I can say that Father is unmistakably a man of love and sacrifice who always invests himself entirely for the salvation of the world. In fact, wherever he went, he always spoke to various groups of people, guiding and loving them tirelessly. I can also say that his extraordinary visions of the future of the world, which involve many plans and projects, come from that kind of commitment.
This time he gave a new direction to UTS, which is that UTS should create an undergraduate program of theological education. He also said that we must learn Spanish because the time will come when many qualified South Americans study at UTS. That kind of vision about UTS, I think, came from his deep commitment of love and sacrifice. Therefore, let us truly establish that tradition of commitment at UTS!