The Words of In Jin Moon from 2011
Making Holy Salt
A colorful foretaste of the heavenly culture aborning in Korea, the Fatherland of Unificationism, was seen in a festival filled with plentiful ceremonies, celebrations, contests, lessons, and other activities for blessed families to celebrate the beginning of the New Year centered on God and True Parents. From the 1st day of the 1st month in the 2nd year of Cheon-gi, meaning "Heavenly Foundation," calendar, the "True Peace and Unity Cheon Bok Festival" was held with True Parents, Rev. and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon, at the Unification World Headquarters Church in South Korea.
Starting on True God's Day, the Holy Day that begins each New Year for Unificationists, until the celebration of True Parent's Birthday on February 8th, Unification Church members from around the country of Korea, and diplomats from different world organizations, attended the week long festival.
The Cheon Bok Ceremony began at 3 p.m. on Feb 3rd, as a ritual for beginning the new heavenly calendar within the blessings of True Parents and four great saints. It was separated into three parts, starting with an Interfaith Prayer Ceremony which included representatives of the Confucian, Buddhist, Christian, and Muslim faiths who each came to the stage and gave their blessings to the participants.
Next, a World Peace Seunghwa Ceremony, officiated by Rev. Hyung Jin Moon, was held to commemorate the fallen heroes and deceased patriots who gave their lives for the re-unification of North and South Korea. The last ceremony, Inheritance of Cheon Bok Holy Salt, was a ceremony where four faith representatives combined soil that was brought from the birthplace of the four great saints of their religion. After being mixed with with Holy Salt, it was sanctified by Rev. Moon to symbolize the heavenly fortune of the four saints centering on True Parents. It was then given to participants to inherit into their own family.
Throughout the entire 7-day festival, a variety of cultural performances and programs were held to help members connect to God and True Parents as well as promote understanding between religions. Every day, training sessions for Chigong (a practice of aligning breath, physical activity and awareness for mental, spiritual and corporeal health), ceremonial tea sessions, and calligraphy were offered at Cheon Bok Gung. A debate between Theism and Atheism took place as well as performances given by four different religious cultures. One of the main competitions during the week long festival was the 1st Unification Church choir contest where more than nine church congregations in Korea competed. The winner was awarded to perform at True Parent's Birthday Celebration, which was held as a luncheon on February 8th, the final day of the Cheon Bok Festival.
Every night a Holy Spirit Healing Session was held with Rev. Hyung Jin Moon to reflect upon the significance of the New Year with Hoon Dok Hae and 120 full bows. The healing sessions are continuously offered for members to inherit True Parents' spirit and to convey this true love to one's neighbor.
During the festival, Cheon Bok Lanterns were lit around the Headquarters building and ribbons and candles were attached in the inside of the building to symbolize hopes for an ideal world of peace, and wishes to inherit Heaven's Blessings.
Contributed by HSA-UWC Staff