The Words of the Chung Family
Mrs. Dae Wha Chung (Kim)
My name is Dae Wha Chung, wife of President Young Whi Kim. Dae means big, great, grand. Wha means harmony, intimacy, friendliness. Chung means true or real. At the beginning of my time in the Unification Church, Father said to me, "I hope you will become a really great harmonized woman in the world as your name says" I answered strongly, "Yes, Father, I'll try my best even at the risk of my life"
One day Father said, "Dae Wha looks like my younger sister!' I was happy. A few years ago I met a cousin of Father who lives by Chung Pyung Lake. I asked him, "Do I really resemble Father's younger sister?" After he looked at me for a short time he replied, "Yes, you do. You do look like her."
We were one of the original three couples blessed in April 1960, five days after True Parents' Holy Blessing. The other couples in our trinity are Won Pil Kim and his wife and Hyo Won Eu (the first president of the Korean Unification Church) and his wife. We three couples are in the position of True Parents' three spiritual children.
We have two sons and three daughters. Our eldest son, Jin Kun, is now studying at Georgetown University in Washington DC. The other four children are in Korea. Two daughters are university students and our third daughter and second son are high school students. Our youngest child is 15.
My family lives next door to the former Chung Pa Dong Church. In 1981 Father gave us the house where the True Family used to stay when they were in Korea. So we are spiritually protected because it is such a holy place.
I come from Whang Hai province which is now in North Korea. My mother is over seventy. She takes care of my children. My parents were blessed as a married couple after the Yoido Island Rally in 1975. I have a younger brother, and a younger sister who was blessed as an 1800 Couple. Last year, unfortunately, my father passed into the spirit world. My grandmother was from the Moon clan.
During my childhood until 1945, I lived under the Japanese government. After that I lived under the communist government for three years, while I was a middle-school student. So I know how wrong communism is from my own experience. In 1948, when I was 16 years old, my family crossed the 38th parallel and fled to the south.
In 1950, when the Korean War broke out, my family again took refuge, this time in Masan, a city in the southern part of Korea near Pusan. In Masan I became good friends with one of my classmates who attended a Methodist church. (I was Presbyterian at the time.) She was bright and sacrificial and smiled all the time. 1 wanted to live such a cheerful sacrificial life as hers. Therefore I followed her and attended the same church. But even though I attended her church regularly I couldn't see any improvement in my internal character.
After graduating from high school in Masan I entered Ehwa Women's University, which was founded by the Methodist Church of Canada and is the best women's university in Korea. My major was home economics. My desire was to be a wise mother and a good wife because I thought that that would bring the ultimate happiness to a woman. During my university life I hoped to become a true Christian so that I could spend my life with a firm belief based on the truth.
President Hyo Won Eu giving a lecture on the parallels of history.
During my childhood I was rarely sick and almost never had to take any medicine. Suddenly at the age of 16, however, I suffered from pleurisy. Although I soon recovered, my body started to get weaker from then on. Pleurisy came again when I was 19, but I took quick action and got rid of it in time. Then while at the university I became sick again. This time it became quite serious and I was hospitalized for several weeks for treatment. Even though I was in the best hospital in Seoul the doctors couldn't discover exactly what was wrong with me. They examined me thoroughly, but they still couldn't give a name to my illness.
My whole body was swollen and painful as if hot pepper had been sprinkled all over it. I couldn't sleep day or night. My eyesight also became weaker. I took herbal medicines and had acupuncture treatments. I even tried the special Korean steam bath, which is heated by burning pine needles. It was a terrible experience, but in desperation I tried whatever I could think of. Finding no hope to go on, I concluded that it was better for me to die as soon as possible. The only thing which kept me from suicide was the knowledge that I would go to hell. Also, I would not be showing a heart of filial piety toward my parents if I died sooner than they. I had to make up my mind very firmly and find out whether God, the Kingdom of Heaven, hell, and life after death existed or not because my illness was so heavy.
The Protestant ministers at Ehwa University couldn't teach me about the existence of God clearly. I tried going to the Catholic Church with my Catholic cousin, but I still couldn't find the truth. At that time a member of Jehovah's Witnesses visited and advised me to study the Bible. I was very happy, thinking that I would find the truth this time. As I lay in bed, we studied the Bible together twice a week for two months. The Jehovah's Witness said there was no spiritual world after death and that when the time comes the dead bodies will be resurrected to live eternally on the earth. I couldn't believe this, so I said I didn't want to study with them anymore. They didn't come again.
My disease became worse and worse because no doctors could find the cause. I felt a lot of hopelessness. At that moment, my friend whom I hadn't seen for five years happened to visit me. (She was the friend I had had when we were taking refuge in Masan.) She spoke to me about the Principle of Creation and the Second Coming of the Lord and another chapter from the Principle. But she didn't say anything about the Unification Church. She just said that she was attending "Seoul Church." Even though I didn't understand anything very well from what she taught me, from that time on I began looking forward to seeing her again. For three months I waited for her to come back. In February 1955 she came back and said she would take me to a place where we could hear a wonderful preacher.
We went together to a small house. The situation reminded me of 2000 years ago when Jesus Christ had to move from house to house with his 12 disciples. In a small room was a man, lying on his back, teaching the Principle with zeal and heart. He was our former president, Mr. Eu, who passed away in 1970. [Mr. Eu had severe back problems and often had to teach from this position.] I listened to his lectures for three days with several other people. I felt delight and joy come from the bottom of my heart. Everything changed -- the mountains, rivers, grass, and trees all looked joyful to me. I felt new hope and at the same time I felt shame when I realized that until that time I had been seeking my own personal happiness. I was deeply sorrowful to hear that Jesus Christ was crucified because of the disbelief of the Jews. I actually felt that he had been crucified because of my own betrayal and disobedience. The first day I decided to join.
Through the lectures I found that God is a living God still working on earth spiritually and that He is my father and I am his daughter. I was deeply convinced that spirit world existed. In order to give me life many members prayed for me. One spiritualist prayed for me in a foreign tongue which I felt expressed my whole heart. I cried and cried and just couldn't stop. Through the spiritualist's prayers and the testimonies I heard, I came to believe completely that the Principle was true. My strong desire to live rose up from the very bottom of my heart. My tears of repentance flowed down without stopping. I couldn't stop crying even after I had returned home.
It was the most important moment of change in my life. My disease was cured as I listened to the Principle. It is clear to me that my ancestors caused my illness so that I could meet the True Parents. All my pain was gone; I came to have a good appetite and I slept well. My mind was very joyful. My body felt as light as a butterfly. As I understood how hard God had been working through history, I deeply determined to go anywhere and everywhere God asked me to, in spite of whatever trials or difficulties I might meet.
My favorite hymn at that time was "The Day of Joy!" I liked it very much because it expressed my heart very well:
The Day of Joy
The day God called me was a very
I cannot forget this feeling and 1 want to preach it all over the world.
This day was the day when God washed away all of my sins.
Please teach me how to awaken, how to pray, and how I can always feel happy.
The day when God forgave my sin.
The joy and gratitude of being reborn and finding God has never gone away from my heart. It is still my biggest joy after spending 30 years in the Unification Church. When I faced the trials of Satan I always remembered that moment of joy and recovered my hope. I still do the same today.
Father with sisters, around 1955. The sisters standing are those who were expelled from Ehwa University for joining the church. Mrs. Kim is in last row, second from right.
I first met Father at the Heung In Dong Church near the old Seoul Stadium. I felt immediately that he was as close to me as my physical father. I had no feeling of being a guest or a stranger around him; I instantly felt intimacy and closeness. He treated us as his brothers and sisters and sons and daughters. At that time Father was 35. I really felt that he was my father. One day I dreamt that I was crying and burying my face in my physical father's lap. But when I looked up at him he was True Father. In this way my dreams made me clearly understand that True Father is really my True Parent and he represents God. I was sure that the Principle could assure man's happiness and bring the Kingdom of Heaven on earth.
Two months after joining the Unification Church, I was still continuing my university life. In 1955 we started to witness to the students. Many students of Yunsei Presbyterian University and Ehwa University came to our church like a flowing river. A few hundred students came to listen to the Principle. The presidents of those universities were very surprised at this. One day Helen Kim, the president of Ehwa University, sent Prof. Young Oon Kim to the Unification Church to investigate. (Dr. Kim had graduated from theological seminaries in Japan and Canada and was dean of the theology department at Ehwa.) Dr. Kim came to the church and argued with Pres. Eu and Father for three days; during that time she asked many questions which she still had from the time of her theological studies. After the three days all her questions were answered. So eventually she became a member as well.
Pres. Helen Kim was very shocked and discharged five professors who had joined our church. These five were famous and respected professors whom the students liked very much.
In April 1955 the dean of students called all of us who had joined the Unification Church to her office and gave us a questionnaire to fill out. There were about ten questions, such as: How did you join the Unification Church? Who first introduced you to it? When did you join? What is your impression of the Unification Church? Are you willing to risk punishment from the school for attending the Unification Church?
The meaning of the questionnaire was that we had to choose between the university and the church. In my head I knew that I could never forsake the Unification Church even if I had to leave my school. It was there that I had been resurrected both in body and in spirit.
When I was expelled from Ehwa University my mother went to the school and protested, asking why such a wonderful student as her daughter had to be expelled for attending the Unification Church. "There are atheists, Buddhists, and even communists attending this university." she said. "What's wrong with the Unification Church?" She made quite a fuss, claiming that the school's action was unreasonable and unjust.
In May 1955 a big happening took place in Ehwa University. Fourteen students were expelled, and most of them were just about to graduate in June. At that time in Korea it was rare for girls to attend college, so their families were naturally upset when they were expelled. Newspapers reported about it. Some editorials said we had religious freedom, that no one could prevent us from going to the Unification Church, and that the university was wrong.
We asked the dean to explain what she thought was wrong about the Unification Church, but she wouldn't answer. She simply unconditionally branded it as evil. She hadn't visited our church and had never even heard the Principle. I, however, had been going there for many months and found nothing wrong. I felt that the only reason the school was stopping us was because of the fear of losing all its students to the Unification Church.
At that time spirit world gave us strength by speaking through us in tongues and giving us revelations. We stayed in front of the residence of the president for two nights, but she didn't give us any chance to speak with her and she eventually called the police. After we were expelled I transferred to Sook Myong Women's University to finish my studies.
Father praying after a lecture to early followers.
Those fourteen students received a lot of opposition from society and their families, but their faith was very strong even though they faced many difficulties. They were loved by Father and the brothers and sisters. Father and the members recognized them as precious sisters and said that their names would remain in the history of the Unification Church eternally. Some of the sisters of this group are now the wives of important leaders of our church, such as Mrs. Eu, wife of the late President Eu, the first Korean national leader; Mrs. Lee, wife of the current Korean national leader; Mrs. Hong, wife of the president of a printing company, Mrs. Hwang, wife of the vice-president of a finishing company; Mrs. Lee, who works at Jakob House; Mrs. Choi, wife of Sang Ik Choi; and myself.
Father named us the Myung Won group. Myung is from Father's name and means brightness of the sun and moonlight; won is a circle and means making the world harmonious and peaceful. Father also gave us an official name last year -- The Intellectual Women's Association.
In 1957, at the time I graduated from Sook Myong University, Father started telling us that he would go to America someday. I couldn't believe it. We had thought that Father would always live in Korea. I was very sorry to be separated from Father and wanted to attend him very much.
I asked myself why I had studied home economics. At that time it was difficult to become a full-time member, but finally I became a kitchen member. At first I thought it was quite ridiculous for a college graduate to become part of the kitchen staff, but I found out later that three of the older kitchen staff had prayed deeply for a qualified person to come to the kitchen to attend Father. Thirty years ago there were no gas ranges, nor running hot and cold water in Korean kitchens. Our kitchen, separate from the dining room and with an earthen floor, was very cold in winter.
At that time Father's meals were very poor. He wouldn't allow us to serve him nice meals. He wouldn't even sit at a table; for many years he just used a tray which he placed on the floor beside him. Thinking of the pioneer missionaries in the countryside, he shared the hard life together with them. He ate cooked barley instead of rice and not more than three separate dishes at a meal. Father fasted on his birthday, and we also used to fast on our birthdays for the first three years after joining the church. At that time the pioneers fasted naturally because of their poor financial situations. You can't imagine how poor our early pioneering life was. Father sometimes consoled me, saying, "Even though you are working in the kitchen after graduating from college, you still have to consider yourself fortunate because at least you can eat somehow. Think of the members who don't have enough to eat."
Three days after the Holy Wedding of True Parents, True Mother came to the kitchen to cook meals for Father for three days. I was moved by her attitude and ability. She behaved so naturally and calmly as if she had been working in our kitchen for a long time. She cooked such good and delicious meals in spite of her young age. I was really touched by her and felt deeply that she was really a mother.
During that time Father founded the Little Angels and the Tongil Company. Even though the members donated a lot of money to the church, Father didn't use it for his family, but for the public mission and future work. There wasn't even enough fruit or drinks for the children. I still remember how sorry I felt when I had to ask the True Children not to drink something and to save it for Father.
I was responsible for the preparation and making of the offering tables for the five holidays. These are celebrated in a very big way in Korea. Once some Japanese members visited Korea and one of them asked me, as she was shaking my hand, why the hands of the national leader's wife were so rough. I replied that it was not such an easy thing to be the wife of the president.
In 1970 the blessed wives went pioneer witnessing for three years. Later, as an itinerary worker, I traveled all over Korea. I had to help my husband, the president of Korea, so that the members didn't feel lonely after True Parents went to America. I took care of the members in the front line and was responsible for the household at the Chung Pa Dong headquarters.
In January 1982 my husband's mission changed; he is now the regional leader of Europe. So I have been helping my husband there since then.
My motto has always been to follow the advice given in 1 Thess. 5:16-18: to be ever joyful and thankful and to pray without ceasing. Through this motto my desire is to internally resemble True Mother more and more in her behavior and character.