The Words of the Hong Family

Blessings Come from Obedience

Sung Pyo Hong
February 1982

Hyo Jin Moon marrying Nan Sook Hong, January 7, 1982

Thank you. I am very deeply honored to be present here, yet I feel unworthy of this praise. I see my children getting married to such an extraordinary family, so I am completely overwhelmed. I always considered myself a young man, but now I realize that I am getting old, too. It is a great joy and honor to be in this position, for two of my children to become part of True Parents' family.

I have learned that God's providence, particularly the actions of True Parents, cannot be foreseen by anybody. My family is a good example of this, for I never expected such an extraordinary honor to come upon my family. I was totally shocked and haven't recovered yet. Providence sometimes comes all of a sudden, as when I was blessed 20 years ago.

In 1957 I joined the Unification Church as a freshman in college. Then for four years I dedicated myself to True Father. But getting married in the Unification Church did not even come to my mind in those days.

In 1961, I was almost ready to graduate from the university. A seven-day workshop was held that year, and during that time 12 men were called to standby upstairs in our church. During the training session, Father called me and asked, "Have you ever thought about the Blessing?" I said, "No, sir, I have never thought about marriage, I never have felt myself too worthy of the Blessing." Then he said, "If I choose your mate, will you accept her?" And I said, "I am at your will."

Then Father pulled out an album which had many girls' pictures, and handing it to me he said, "All right, choose one." I said, "Father, I don't want to look at the album." He seemed curious, and asked, "Why not?" I answered, "First of all, I never thought about my own Blessing or my own marriage. Secondly, I just don't want to pick her. Thirdly, I don't know anybody. I will just follow your will."

So Father said, "All right, Sung Pyo, you are going to accept anybody I choose?"

"Yes, Father, I accept."

"What about this 250 pound woman? It's no problem for you?"

"No problem. sir, As long as it is a person who wears a skirt, it's okay." I bowed down to Father, and came down for the workshop.

After six days all the 11 men had been called into Father's room and were engaged, but he had not called me. I thought, "Well, I'm not good enough or old enough," and never felt bad at all.

The other elder brothers had been so worried they lost their appetite and couldn't eat. But I didn't worry -- I ate, slept and was completely at peace. Then Father called me, finally, on the seventh day. He showed me one charming lady's picture. "Do you know this young girl?" he asked.

I answered that I didn't know her deeply, but had met her once at the church evangelical department, when we were transcribing one of Father's messages.

Father said, "It was a very difficult task to choose your mate."

"Thank you very much," I said, and that was all.

Normally, it takes about three years or more to be eligible for the Blessing. My wife was only ten months in the church, had not gone to any workshop, had not completed a seven-day fast, but she was totally dedicated to the movement. She was so young and didn't know much about Divine Principle. So Father brought her up to his room, gave her a lecture about the Blessing, and told her she was now picked for the Blessing.

After the engagement, Father gave our group a great message. At that time, he asked my wife and me to stand up, told us, "You look alike," and predicted, "great children will come from you."

The promise of great children

Of course, for 20 years I did not forget Father's comment. But I did not recognize it as a specific prophecy. We have been obedient to Father, that is the only thing we can say. I did not do anything special. God blessed our family, giving us three sons and four daughters. I have never suffered because of my children's behavior; they have always been obedient, God-loving children. None of our seven children look like either of us. Someone once told me that is a sign of good fortune. If all the children look like their parents, the family won't progress. However, if they look different, they will be better.

I am short, and my wife is even shorter. Father is always teasing me, "Don't you think you wife is too short, that you are living with a little girl?" Until Father started commenting on it, I had never thought of her as being short.

Over the years I have been deeply impressed by my wife. She may be short, but she has a tremendous heart and personality, such great faith, and is a perfect wife and mother. Each time I see her characteristics, my gratitude towards True Parents has increased.

Ye Jin Nim's Blessing

Last year, the first Blessing came to my children, but my wife and I never expected it, for two reasons. First, we never thought our children were good enough. Second, True Parents' children are at a different level, and it seemed we could never mingle together.

On that day, Father explained to the elder members the meaning of the Blessing to Ye Jin Nim, and then pointing to me, said, "Sung Pyo, you stand up." Even then, I never expected anything. Then Father asked me, "Are you ready to make an offering of your eldest son for the Kingdom of Heaven?" I knew what Father meant, and once more I said, "At your will." Then an overwhelming feeling of shock and gratitude hit me.

My son Jin Whi is like a younger brother to Ye Jin Nim, but she has such a beautiful and amicable relationship with him and is investing herself completely to make the marriage work. I am overjoyed by her deep heart. Her tender love and care for our family has profoundly moved us. She knows precisely my children's characters, and cares for each one in a unique way, as if they were her own younger brothers and sisters. I am deeply, deeply grateful. She shows such maturity and feels so much responsibility as eldest daughter of our True Parents.

The Moon and Hong families at the blessing of Hyo Jin Moon and Nan Sook Hong

Hyo Jin Nim's Blessing

Hyo Jin Nim's engagement and wedding were even more incredible for me. Since I was already given the extraordinary honor of offering my son to be the bridegroom of Ye Jin Nim, I never even imagined that my eldest daughter would become a member of the True Family as well. She is young and not good enough to be Hyo Jin Nim's bride, but I beseeched him to take care of her and develop her character.

November 22 was a Sunday, and Father always spoke at the church at 6 o'clock in the morning. That day Hyo Jin Nim came with a friend who wanted to listen to Father. During the sermon, Mother called Hyo Jin Nim aside and told him about the engagement, which would take place that day. In his testimony later, Hyo Jin Nim said that he had wanted to wait several more years, so he could first get more education and become more mature. However, when Mother asked him if he would accept Father's decision about the time of his engagement, he set aside his own thinking and replied, "Mother, whatever you wish."

She asked, "Have you been thinking of someone?" and he answered, "No, I can accept anyone you choose for me."

Mother's third question was the real one: "What about Jin Whi's younger sister, Nan Sook?" He was surprised and said, "Mother, is it all right to do that? Because already the elder brother was taken away, can we take their daughter, too?"

"As long as you feel comfortable about it, it's all right."

"Well, all right, if that's what you want."

Hyo Jin Nim did not know my daughter. After the engagement ceremony, there was a little period of fellowship, and Hyo Jin Nim wanted to make some conversation with his fiancée. But he had never had much contact with her, and at that particular moment, he didn't even remember her name. So he went over to ask Ye Jin Nim, "What is my fiancée's name?" After he found out, he want back to talk.

My daughter was told about the engagement directly by Father. I was really worried about her, knowing that she is very young and immature in many ways. I wondered if she could handle such a great blessing. But then, as I sat watching, I saw that she was handling herself very well and gave good answers to True Father; I was very proud of her.

During the engagement, Father prayed intensely for the new couple, and almost everyone in the room was crying. I was deeply touched, and as I sat thinking after the prayer, Hyo Jin Nim called to me from the door. "Mr. Hong, won't you come and see me?" So I went out, and in the passageway, he looked straight into my eyes, patted me on the back, and said, "Mr. Hong, I know exactly what you are worrying about. Don't worry! I will take good care of her!" and then he said, "Please pray for me. I need your prayers." I saw such deep love in his eyes, and knew that he is a great person.

The engagement was held at noon, and that afternoon True Parents and Hyo Jin Nim left for the United States. After 20 days, Hyo Jin Nim returned to Korea, here three celebrations were held in his honor: the first was for the engagement, attended just by relatives; the second was for his birthday; the third was his large send-off party. On these three different occasions, Hyo Jin Nim expressed his feelings. I am sure some day he will testify directly to you.

I've been observing him during these 50 days since his engagement, and have discovered he is so much like Father. It is coming out now; he has that "big boss" spirit! In a man's life, there are key moments: marriage is one of them. Hyo Jin Nim has rough edges, but at a decisive moment he showed great faith. Members were touched by a kind of fable Hyo Jin Nim told in which he indicated his repentance and resolve to do better.

Also, before the engagement, Hyo Jin Nim had been unsure of how to address Ye Jin Nim's husband, Jin Whi Nim, who is actually younger than he. But afterwards, Hyo Jin Nim decided to call him "my elder brother-in-law."

On December 28, after the grand farewell party, he invited a friend to stay overnight with him, and spent the entire night telling him of his determination to follow Father. Hyo Jin Nim is a very resolute person. Once committed to something he will do it.

Hyo Jin Nim said he always feels inadequate to attend church meetings. He hates mediocrity, injustice, and wants to do only well. He is not like some members who feel free about coming to Father, even when they have not done well. At the end of the long night, Hyo Jin Nim told his friend to kneel and apologize to Heavenly Father and resolve to get better grades in school. He has Father's long-windedness! That night was like a revival meeting.

True Children's devotion to their parents

Through these two heavenly weddings, I have come to know True Children deeply, and what most strikes me is their absolute seriousness to live up to True Father and Mother's expectation. It's a beautiful thing to behold. Even after serving our True Parents a long time, it is difficult for me to get close to them.

Last time Father and Mother went back to Korea, they pushed all the blessed couples out to do home church, and asked the wives to find a way to support their families. Ye Jin Nim kept asking my wife, "What would you do? What would you sell?" So inevitably my wife has to go out and sell now!

When Father gives instructions, we often try to compromise, saying, "Well, my situation is unusual; I am in a different position." I have frequently seen leaders use their own judgment, with poor results, But I have seen that Ye Jin Nim always gets approval from True Parents first, and then acts.

All our wishes have been fulfilled

Right after Ye Jin Nim's Blessing, there was a reunion of the Hong family. The parents of my wife had been so negative towards the church and so adamantly opposed to our Blessing 20 years ago. But now three generations of her family came and bowed to me and asked my forgiveness. They rejoiced over the extraordinary blessing our family has received. It was a beautiful, victorious moment.

We as a couple have no more wishes. All I did was one thing, and that was to obey our True Parents. I am really determined to go on the road of obedience the rest of my life. The True Family foundation is concretely laid, and we can be Cain-type families. I resolve to give my life to True Parents, to attend and support their children, so we all together can create a literal Kingdom of Heaven on earth. 

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