The Words of In Jin Moon from 2009
Youth Educators from around the country, attending the Equip U program held from August 7-10, meet for a special talk with Rev. In Jin Moon on August 9, 2009.
This is a great pleasure for me to be meeting with all of you, the young adult ministers from all around the country. A lot of things are changing here at Headquarters. We are still in the process of restructuring and reorganizing STF, and just last week Father picked Hero Hernandez as the new CARP president. I'm so delighted to have somebody of that caliber heading up CARP in the United States. And also CARP will be going through a severe restructuring and a rethinking of what it is supposed to be.
Historically CARP has been a campus organization that did a lot of good things, but the biggest problem with it is that it has never been part of the campus or the activities going on there. Many of the CARP leaders were auditing courses simply so that they could get on campus to witness and participate in different student activities. My feeling is that there is no reason why we as CARP members should be chased off campuses because we're not legitimate students. The whole question of where do we hold CARP events on campus? Well, it's a problem to try to hold a student organizational event when you’re not part of the university.
I remember when I was a Columbia University undergraduate, the university had a budget of almost $1 million to distribute to student organizations. I noticed that a huge chunk of that money went to Hillel, the Jewish organization on campus. Some went to ROTC, and a substantial amount went out to lesbian and gay organizations at Columbia -- I think one year they got something like $350,000 to put on their programs.
Here we have CARP being subsidized by HSA. So the big question that I would have to ask CARP leaders is: Why are we not plugged into the system so that we have access to that kind of support? Back then, when I was an undergraduate, you only needed three full-time students and the sponsorship of a professor and that was it: You were up and running as a campus organization. Depending on some of the ideas that you had for the yearly calendar, then you could make your case through putting together a proposal for funding. If the chairman of the finance committee, along with different committee members, thought that it was worth the money to invest in an organization like yours because you represented the university well, that's how most student organizations got funded.
Before we were in the time of wilderness, haphazardly trying to meet providential time lines and deadlines. Father pushed us to rise to the challenge of accomplishing many great things, and we did. The Washington Monument rally, the Yankee Stadium rallies: All these were wonderful things. All the ICUS conferences, and now UPF and GPF: these were all great events. They showed what great works our True Parents and our communities were doing all around the world.
As a mother and as somebody who cares about the future of my children as well as the future of all of you, I'm thinking that it's wonderful to do many lofty and grand things in the name of world peace, but if we're not growing as a community, if we're not doing well as families, then we don't really have much to talk about. We must inspire the young people of our movement by providing a uniform education track that will take them from birth to becoming a successful young adult. Many of our organizations have been acting independently of one another -- STF was doing its own thing, CARP was doing its own thing, WFWP was doing its own thing. We have been working under the umbrella of the label of world peace and the goodwill of the people, but many times it didn't take all of us through our growth stage, the different periods in our life, to really help us become successful, internally excellent, and externally excellent individuals.
As a mother, I very much see things like STF and CARP as stepping-stones to becoming a successful young adult. Here I am, launching this new thing called Lovin' Life Ministries. In the beginning, when I invited the district leaders to participate in this ministry and at the Manhattan center, the response that my team and I got was blank stares: What is this woman up to? Why the Manhattan Center? We have to drive to attend Sunday Service? We have our church in New Jerusalem, we have our church in West Rock, we have our church in Long Island, we have our church in Brooklyn and Harlem. Why do we need another church?
My desire was to create a place where our community members could feel like they are coming home each Sunday. It's really a chance for us to look around the room and realize that we are a phenomenal community. The problem with young people doing their own thing off in New Jerusalem and West Rock is that they don't really get to learn or care about the other blessed children in the area because they tend to coalesce, to stick together and hang out by themselves. But we have to know each other if we're going to work together. We have to grow together. We have to rub against each other if we're truly going to be a community that's like a family.
Kids have started coming from, for instance, Long Island communities where there are only five blessed couples. Don't you think it's much more exciting for the young people to worship at Sunday Service with over 1,000 people as opposed to five blessed couples, who may be very tired that Sunday? Maybe the music there is nonexistent or not up to the quality that we can provide here for all of you.
Immediately the young people, and even the parents themselves, could realize that there's something different here, something exciting. Instead of complaining about our different districts or regions, if we come together as one family and celebrate as if we're one family, then we're going to pervade the atmosphere of our movement with a contagious thing called true love. If people experience it here, they're going to want to share it with their loved ones. If they experience it here and they feel energized, that's going to help them carry on throughout the week, and so they will come back to feel reinvigorated.
What I'm trying to do is not that revolutionary, if you think about it. It's just something that needs to be done. It's the obvious thing that was overlooked for many years. As we slowly put the jigsaw puzzle together into a picture that I would like to create for the sake of our Heavenly Parent and True Parents, I am going to need the cooperation of the different pieces to help me create it together. I think we're well on our way.
The wonderful thing from my point of view is that I have the full support of my family and, most importantly, the full support of my parents. They are really behind all the changes that are taking place in America. They are behind the idea that we can't really take care of anybody else if we do not take time to care for our own children and our own communities. Our communities need to thrive in order to attract people to come and be a part of them. So it's a very simple way of thinking, but it takes your cooperation for me to effectively implement this idea in our community and in the organization that I'm trying to run here at Headquarters.
If CARP members are fundraising 24-7, even the good students who are undergraduates at their university have to give up an inordinate amount of time to fundraise so they can pay rent for the buildings that they are maintaining as CARP houses. I say, instead of trying to maintain physical buildings, if you become part of a campus organization, you have access to student centers. Your members don't have to be fundraising; they can be applying themselves and doing well, getting straight A's, being elected president of the student body, becoming the editor-in-chief of the student paper, being elected chairman of the finance committee, being elected chairman of the United Minorities Council. Become an integrated organization on campus so that when you have something to say, your fellow students will listen and you won't look like a parasite organization latching onto universities, trying to prey on their students.
In fact, CARP's new image should be that it's a phenomenal student organization that is really serving the community and encouraging young people to be excellent, internally and externally. Who's going to have a problem with that? How phenomenal would that be? At the same time, CARP can be a watchdog for our community and our faith on campus.
It is not right that CARP has been around for the last 20 or so years and yet every freshman sociology class at different universities across the country teaches about cults, using the Unification Church and my father as the prime example. What has CARP been doing about that? It should be the watchdog. Hillel is protecting the Jewish communities, representing them on campus. I very much would like to see CARP be the watchdog of our community and faith on campus.
When my children arrived as freshmen at their university, they received a packet of literature, together with a packet of condoms. A pamphlet introduced the students to the university and to the surrounding area, talking about shopping, where to dine and find entertainment, and other pertinent information that freshmen require. The pamphlet had a section about the different organizations and groups that they needed to avoid. On that list was the name of our community, our church. The pamphlet said that Moonies are the people you need to avoid and that the Unification Church is something that you need to stay away from. Here we are, on that list in the pamphlet given to every freshman in the country.
What is CARP doing about that? Don't you think that CARP as a student organization should be the first one to voice our opinion about how we do not want to be categorized as an organization or group that should be avoided? We have the dignity and the right to stand tall on every campus in America. We have the right to seek the highest education possible, made available to anybody else. Why should we allow a university to make us feel like we're second-class citizens? Or worse, why should we allow colleges to encourage our friends and our roommates to think that somehow we’re not a good organization?
These are simple questions that I've had for leaders of CARP and my reasons as to why things have to change. It cannot be business as usual. I do not want the younger children in my family to receive a freshman packet that says that the Unification Church and Moonies are people that you must avoid. I have incredible pride in who I am as our Heavenly Parent’s daughter and as a member of this community. So we must empower our young people to write letters to the university president and go to student meetings and voice these concerns.
We should be the watchdog for all human rights violations that are going on all around the world, not just for the concerns of our own community. We need to see how much of a service we can be to the community by being plugged in, by being integrated, by not being subsidized by HSA but by being a legitimate, efficient, and efficacious organization that deserves the right to receive support from universities.
There is no reason why CARP cannot be as phenomenal as Hillel. Do you know that in this day and age, when representatives of Hillel comment about the Jewish communities, all the editors-in-chief of major newspapers around the country, including the Boston Globe and the New York Times, have to listen? How wonderful if CARP could be such an organization, where all the editors-in-chief of newspapers that have given my father and our communities a great deal of grief over the years would have to listen? Don't you want to get there? I want to get there. I want to create a university atmosphere where I don't have to worry that my children are going to be discriminated against or be made to feel like they are subhuman or second-class citizens. There's no need to be that way anymore. You guys are incredibly gifted and talented, and we have some really fine talent coming up. How wonderful would it be if we could go to our universities as proud Unificationists? If I can have your help, I think we can get there very soon.
Here we have all the young adult ministers. I am so delighted to see the turnout. It's heartwarming for me to think that there are a lot of young people across the country really wanting to go into ministry. Being a young adult minister is basically like becoming a parent to a lot of children. These children are not even your own, but you have to love them, nurture them, and empower them as if they were your own. It takes a lot of love, a lot of patience, and a lot of persistence. But if we can do our jobs right, we are going to be instrumental in building up this incredible new generation of peace that I know our Heavenly Parent is waiting for.
If we can reinvigorate ourselves by looking at each other and seeing what a great group we have to work with, then even though the day gets long and there's so much to do that you wonder if you can get through it all, if we can just look into each other's faces and find strength in each other, there's really nothing we cannot do.
Does In Jin Nim have a vision? Absolutely. But just like a mother knows that you have to unfold your vision in a way that depends on the extent to which your children are ready to share the vision, I feel that certain things have to be in place. My hope is that Lovin' Life Ministries can be the engine in the caboose and that young adult ministers can be like different trains. Here in New York people are going to workshops and bringing their family and friends. Many members are bringing their parents who tried to deprogram them 20 or 30 years ago; those parents are saying, Now I get it. I thought you were crazy, but now I get it.
Our Heavenly Parent is giving us a wonderful opportunity to do something exciting, something meaningful, and something that is going to be lasting in our relationships and in our community. People may say, Lovin' Life Ministries, that's In Jin Nim's pet project. It is not my pet project; this is our project. This is our attempt and our heart to really reawaken and re-inspire not just our community but also the American people about how precious our True Parents and all of you are.
Unlike some people who want to become fixtures in their jobs, I don't look forward to becoming a fixture in my job. In fact, I would love to raise up great men and women, senior pastors all around the country, so that I can retire and maybe open up my Divine Cheesecake Bakery, which I've been trying to do but I keep on being promoted to this and that. I had a whole business plan, a contract with Harvard University; we were in talks. I was dropping off cheesecakes to my kids, and suddenly I became Mama Park, and Mama Park was the one who delivered all the goodies. They liked the taste of them because I like playing around with very strange flavors. I'm a big fan of fusion cooking, so I have no problems creating a bittersweet chocolate cheesecake with a bit of ko-chu-chang. Nobody knows what it is, but they know that when they have it, it's kind of like molé. I got the idea from Molé because it's a chocolate sauce with hot peppers, which is a delectable, rich chocolate sauce that you can never get enough of. I thought, why not try that in a cheesecake? And voilà, it was a hit! The kids seem to love it. They don't know what the ingredients are, so don’t tell them!
This is what I really wanted to do. I just wanted to be a really good mom because I thought that the way to change the world was by becoming a great family. If I could put five kids out there in service to the world, then I would feel totally satisfied with my contribution to world peace. But unfortunately my older brother passed away, and then, thank God, my father and mother survived the helicopter crash. Now here I am at HSA, and I'm realizing that there is a mountain load of work to be done every day.
But the thing that excites me each and every morning is that if I can raise these kids faster and get them excited enough to be great senior pastors, then I can be relieved of my job and go back to my real dream of opening up a lovely bakery, to which all of you are welcome to come.
This is where I would like to see our movement go: where the First Generation and the Second Generation are so happy in knowing that the Second Generation and the Third Generation are well on their way and that our movement is in great hands. I just cannot wait for the day when I can sit back and watch all of you shine, watch all of you shake up the world, watch all of you make the kind of changes that we have all been waiting for.
So stand on our shoulders, young people. Stand on the shoulders of the First Generation and the Second Generation, and dream the dream that you are going to be the agent of change. Don't wait for me; don't wait for your mom and dad. Don't wait for your politicians or religious leaders. Look inside yourself. Tap into that divinity that all of you have, and think about how you can be the light unto the world.
I'm looking forward to fantastic things in our movement. As we roll out different programs, please participate. I look forward to hearing your feedback about our different ongoing programs. Please take a moment to realize that this is an incredible time and an incredible opportunity. So seize the day, each and every day, and make each day count.
God bless, and I hope for the successful conclusion of the Equip U workshop. I was told that it would go on through Monday. As I've said before, you are in good hands. Heather Thalheimer is a fine woman, and she comes highly qualified. But, just like me, she's approaching the different programs we are rolling out with the heart of a mother and with a feminine touch.
Please do your best to work with her, and please be supportive of the new CARP president that we have here with us. Have a great week. Thank you.