The Words of the Cooper Family

Three day trip in Korea – update

Simon Cooper
June 15, 2010

Pre worship coffee

I hoped to write and post something while in Korea but the wifi was almost non existent.

Here is a summary of my visit. Not everything is here, but it is nevertheless LONG, so please skip to the headings that interest you:

Holy day celebration:

Limited consciousness on my part -- my body clock was in disarray. Reminded me of the importance of preparing for these occasions. If you were to be invited to Buckingham Palace how would you prepare? Father was full of energy and in good form. At one point he spoke about the Union Jack and so got to see it through his eyes which is characteristically very different to how we might understand it. Couldn't fully grasp his description. Nevertheless it was inspiring to see it is on his mind.

After lunch back at our halls of residence as the national leaders group had a few presentations from world mission department staff. There was one about the legal situation with Unification Church International, UCI, (the business group under which a lot of our international church assets are run.) It was complicated and dealt with the fact that Hyun Jin Moon who is the chair has, along with the current board, adapted the constitution which would allow resources to be donated to other not for profit organizations.

The most effective lesson that I picked up was from our International President, Hyung Jin Moon who spoke about the importance of recognizing our own sin. He did not refer to what happened in Brazil at the Sunday Service but it I am sure it is on his mind.

A message about our sin: (taken from my notes on his talk)

We have forgotten we are sinners, and we have forgotten to teach our children that. This is a problem because without that awareness and the humility that awareness brings are we really able to realize how much we need a savior?

When I was younger, even though I followed True Parents rules -- no smoking, no drugs, no drinking, no dating etc, ….I thought that was it. I expected people to respect me, but I was an arrogant little, 'small' boy. I learnt marshal arts so the other kids would be scared of me.

You realize your sins when you start to train on a spiritual path.

A lot of us as blessed children or Jacobs' children never realized we were sinners, because the 1st generation never told us, never successfully educated us about this.

I was recently with True Parents and I asked True Father about this topic to get some clarity: "Just because I am a blessed child and do not have any original sin, can I go to heaven?" Father said: "absolutely not."

The wrong education we received has made us v arrogant.

This is partly why many blessed children have turned their backs on True Parents. We have to realize we commit all sorts of offenses against heaven every day.

This is very important for us to understand.

Once we understand that True Parents through their life course have time and again descended into hell to save our souls we will want to give back, not just our money or time, but we will have a natural desire to give our life over to God.

If we don't get this we will start to believe that we can just make up our own plans and leave True Parents and God out of them.

In our church, as the years have gone by, we have started to shy away from talking about sin too much because we thought to talk about that was negative. We have young people who think they are better than they actually are. That is very dangerous for us.

It is not the 'strong' that God uses, but the weak and the poor. They have one thing, no arrogance before God. Our strength can then start from God.

(The point he was trying to make here reminded me of……

Matthew 5: The Beatitudes

Now when he saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them saying:

"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.

Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.

Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.

If we think we can do this alone, that is the hubris of the archangel.

There is no age of the 1st gen or 2nd gen or 3rd gen…there is only the age of the True Parents.

No one else walked through the course of the 2nd advent, the course of the 8 stages.

Also true children we are v different from true parents, we cannot be like them, however many titles True Father gives me, I cannot take True Parents position. There is only one set of True Parents.

Just because we claim to believe in True Parents it doesn't necessarily mean we actually do believe in True Parents. If it is true, then it must arise in my life -- check yourself.

Four ways to watch yourself:

1. Am I repenting everyday? Do I carry out a life of repentance every day. Not in suffering and in pain, but repenting in joy, the ability to see that I am flawed and developing my conviction to change.

2. Do I hate the little sins that I commit in my daily life? Don't think: "God is love so he cannot hate these little things I do" -

Because God is love he hates sin of any kind. So the sins we thought so casually about, now we hate them the way God does, we feel the weight of the spirit world watching and judging us.

Just lightly admitting my sin, and not being serious to resolve it is a sign of my arrogance and shows lack of interest in really caring about God's perspective on my life.

3. The friends that I have, who I choose to associate with: am I only interested in people who make me feel good? But when you feel True Parents have saved you, you want to spend time with people who want to express their love for them, who love them more than anything, you start wanting to be with people of faith who are serious to love God and True Parents.

4. I remember from when I was younger Father's footprints on the sandy beach of Gloucester. We used to try and step in them, but they were too far apart, and so we would trip and fall. But we just wanted to try our best to do it anyhow, it felt good.

Do we strive to follow the footprints of our True Parents even though we stumble and fall, do we still endlessly try to follow in their footprints?

Raise your hand if you know you are a sinner. I raise my hand with you. That is why these four points can be so beneficial for our life of faith.

These are central points for our life of faith. Just because you are a blessed family it does not necessarily mean you will be able to go to heaven and go close to God.

God will not have to judge us, it is like two magnets that repel each other. Good and evil repel each other.

In spirit world there is no fiery hell, but remember we breathe by God's love, so if because of our sin we are pushed or pulled away from God's realm, it will be like being suffocated with out air. (He spoke about the man who is in the Guinness Book of Records for holding his breath for the longest period of time, …I think it was 18 minutes, and how the last few minutes he was in the most excruciating pain..) So the spirit world is a serious matter for our life and this life is a serious time to prepare for our eternal life.

Sunday Worship:

The next day we went to the main church in Seoul -- Cheon Bok Gung. Initially I was put off by the choirs dress code (they all seemed to be in evening dress/black tie), but once they got singing I discounted what was a matter of difference in culture and taste. Their singing not only lifted me up, but woke me up out of my jet lag.

They have a coffee shop in the entrance to the temple with some very nicely designed paper coffee cups:

We stopped on the way back for some soup with which you each get a personal mini-boiled-chicken with Ginseng in the bowl. Very healthy, but adding salt and eating Kimchi was the only way to get any flavor out of it. Apparently the food was a lot more about the kind of energy it gives you than satisfying any savory needs, bit tough for the Western palate.

Those of us who were from Europe got together with Rev and Mrs. Song on Sunday afternoon to share a coffee and our thoughts on the visit. That was a nice time. They really do compliment each other very well as a couple. They very much wanted to hear what each of us had to say, and Rev Song was keen to explain that when he went up to the Palace for 5 pm he would be sharing our feedback with True Mother. (Father had moved onto Yosu and gone fishing. He had caught something and had had it sent back for that evening for his close disciples and Mother to have some Sashimi.)


It was a good trip, but as always I am personally glad to be on the flight home. I feel a lesser person away from home. I miss England my church and my family. Waiting for luggage at Heathrow I told Rev Song how I don't know if I could make it as a foreign missionary. He smiled. 

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