The Words of Kook Jin Moon
Good afternoon, brothers and sisters! This week we were in Japan, and of course we had a wonderful and memorable experience with Japanese members but we are also very happy that we came back to this sanctuary and to be with you today. We are always honored to have you here in this sanctuary and for those who are joining via internet -- we are welcoming you as well. Welcome brothers and welcome sisters!
Welcoming brothers and sisters! Today I would like to share with you from Cheon Seong Gyeong p. 1058. And this is on chapter 4 "Tradition for blessed families." Father speaks: "All blessed families should arrive before the church service starts and create an atmosphere of grace for the many types of people who will attend, so that they also may experience grace. The number of such members determines the development of the church."
Father here is reminding us that when we come to service then it is important to participate to create that atmosphere of grace, where people can be blessed. And that is really the participation in the service. Brothers and sisters, I always want to encourage you to not only observe service but to participate, sing with the choir, pray the prayers, meditate together and share words with each other.
Today we are going to have very special words. We will have a very special Pastor, Mr. Moon. So, please let's participate today and create this atmosphere of grace that True Father is talking about, and I believe then we will also receive those blessings and take them with us when we leave this sanctuary. Once again, welcome to this service!
Heavenly Father, thank you so much for this day that you have blessed upon us, this beautiful autumn day where we can feel the coolness and refreshment of Your peace. We thank You so much that we can gather here in this sanctuary and that we can be contributors here, so that we truly have the heart of ownership; that we are not only observers of this tradition but that we are those who have invested in this tradition to help make it truly brilliant, to help allow it to shine before all the world as a beacon of light and hope.
We pray that we may also extend our blessings to those around us, and we pray that You may be with each of the families here, joining us even via the internet, that they also receive Your blessing, Your grace and Your love. Father, thank You so much for this day that You have prepared for us. We pray that we now may receive that and return with joy to You, so that You may feel true happiness today. We pray these things altogether in the names of central, blessed families. Aju!
Brothers and sisters, today we have a very special Reverend coming to us and giving us very important words. As you all know, Kook Jin hyung (elder brother) is here in Korea. He is the chairman of the Tongil Group Foundation which has totally revolutionized the organizations in our movement. When he first came, Tongil was at a yearly loss of a hundred million dollars. Three years after he has come it has now fifty million dollars profit a year. Incredible! Let's give it up, brothers and sisters. (Applause) Amazing business genius! He has been featured in dozens of Korean magazines. This month he is the cover model for the CEO Magazine. He got a 6 page interview in there! I want to encourage you to give a huge and welcoming round of applause to our brother Kook Jin hyung when he comes up.
Hello brothers and sisters. How are you today?
I just prepared a very short talk. I'm not too much for words anyway. You know, we are in a very critical time in our church's history and for our organization. There are many important things going on in our movement today. There are many brothers and sisters around the world, including many brothers and sisters here, who are facing and dealing and struggling with some very important questions about the direction of our church for the future. This is really something that we have to continue to discuss and talk about.
When we think about our community, what do we see ourselves as? Are we just another faith community, another denomination? Or are we as the Presbyterians are, or the Calvinists, or the Anglicans, a group of people who come together to share common beliefs and communion and pretty much live with their own beliefs and convictions? Or are we a community which we are comfortable with? Is that the vision for our communities' future? Is that the vision that we have? That's the question we have to ask ourselves.
As we answer that question, we need to understand how and why we find the answer to that question, because we are not just a faith community. We are a community which not only has a conviction but has a mission. This really defines us and delineates our movement and our church from other faith communities. Other faith communities are very wonderful, they have very wonderful members, but their mission orientation is a little bit different. Because the mission that they have been given is different than the mission that has been given to us by God through our True Parents.
You must understand one thing, brothers and sisters. When our True Parents came to this earth and received God's word and His mission and direction, they gave that word to us. And it is an extremely revolutionary message. It turns the entire Christian Theology upside down. This is how revolutionary and powerful a message it is.
Throughout Christian history they taught that you cannot understand and know God's divinity. God's divinity in essence is something which is unknowable by man because man cannot fathom and understand that scope of divinity. But what True Father teaches us is quite different. This is why our theology is so revolutionary. True Father actually teaches what God's divinity is! He tells us very clearly the divinity of God; that God's divinity is true love. He defines it for us. And not only does he define God's divinity, he defines also what true love is. He defines that true love is love that can bring even Satan to voluntary subjugation. And this is revolutionary! It is powerful! The reason why it is so revolutionary and powerful is this: If we as human beings, as man and woman, can understand the divinity of God, understand what the divinity is and how it is defined and achieved, then we stand in the position to directly inherit God's divinity.
This is the blessing which Jesus Christ was not able to give to all the people of the world when he came, because he went to the cross. But this revelation and understanding of God's divinity is the message he was empowered to do at that time, if he had continued to live his life and fulfilled his role as the True Parent of humanity and formed the True Family.
This is the difference. This is the revolutionary essence of True Father's message which makes the word which he is giving to all the people of the world today, so powerful.
It is a message which enables us to become closer to God than in any other time in the history of man. Never in the history of theology, never in the history of man, has humankind been able to restore their original position as sons and daughters of God and come together to live with God as one family.
So, if we understand what Father is telling us from both, intellectual and theological and even the providential point of view, even from the view of Christian theology, we see that his message is very consistent. His message is not only consistent with what he says here today on this earth but is consistent with all the forefathers and prophets who have come before. From Abraham, Noah, Moses, Jesus until today there is a continuity of increasing understanding of God's heart and His love.
You know, when Abraham came, he brought humanity to a higher understanding of God. And Moses even advanced that further. And Jesus, for many thousands of years, has really elevated man's understanding of God to a new level. But in this society, where society has developed modern technology so tremendously, where economic systems have developed so tremendously, it is the time when humanity needs a new understanding of God, so that we can progress to the next level. This is why, as a faith community, our mission is very different from other faith communities.
We have a mission to not only receive the word and God's blessing but to convey it, to spread the message, the word, to empower other people to come to a greater understanding of God and their own personal potential. This is why our mission as a faith community is quite different than other communities. Our mission is to spread this understanding to all the people of the world.
This is the message which the Catholic Church needs. This is the message that the Lutheran Church needs. This is the message which the Anglican Church needs. This is the message that the Buddhists need. This is why our responsibility is different, brothers and sisters. This is why we are called to not only live our blessed lives, to be good people unto ourselves, but we are called to be evangelical, to be soldiers in a sense, soldiers of God, to really bring this understanding to people outside of our community.
And this is the challenge that we face, because we have truly inherited an incredible message, and that message carries within it an incredible responsibility and in a way, a heavy burden. The question is whether or not our community here in Korea can bring that vision further ahead.
Up until now the heavy lifting of growth and development of our church has been carried out by our brothers and sisters in Japan and through the Japanese church. I have gone and taken a look at the Japanese church. I have seen the brothers and sisters there. Yes, they have suffered and sacrificed a great deal but the Japanese church and the members there are no different than you and I. Yet, they carry a disproportional burden of responsibility for bringing our church's message out to the world.
There is no reason why our church here in Korea cannot also be outward reaching and growing through witnessing. There is no reason why our church in America or any other church throughout the world cannot also be a growing church.
But there is a difference in understanding of mission and in mindset. On the one hand the character of our church in Japan is much more pro-active in taking the mission orientation, in taking the goal of spreading the word as a personal responsibility. In our church here in Korea we have a concept that we understand the value of the message and the word that True Parents have given us.
But that sense of ownership, of taking that message, that word and that responsibility, and sharing it outward, that sense or urgency, is relatively weak. So the challenge for us now is how do we, as a faith community, take our understanding of the message and direct this understanding outward, to reach outward.
You know, I have been doing a lot of work here in Korea and I have talked to lots of brothers and sisters and I have heard their arguments to why they cannot reach outward and why they can. I have done a lot of work dealing with people in society. I have met all the presidents of the major newspapers here in Korea. I have met all the broadcasting company presidents. I am in the process of meeting most of the Korean ministers. I've met the chairman of the Bank of Korea, the Head of the military intelligence service, many, many quite important national leaders. They are quite open to True Parent's message. In society there is not a lot of resistance to the message that we have to offer. There is actually quite a bit of hunger to understand and know about what True Parents teach us.
But there is a tremendous lack of self-confidence in our church here in Korea and among our membership. And this mismatch between the nature of the message that we have and the power of the message that we have and the society's desire to receive an important message like this -- there is a gap. That gap is within us individually and organizationally. So this problem we need to solve.
It's not going to be solved by any one person, but collectively we can solve it. If we can help each other to be confident with our understanding of True Parents and our ability to approach those that currently don't share our faith, to bring them in our communities, to have them as our brothers and sisters, not only to partake in the blessings that we receive, but to contribute to the blessings that we receive, to tithe, to give donations to our church that we are building -- this is the step that we need to take, that step of reaching outward, giving our understanding, our truth, and then asking people to be our partners.
Understanding of what partnership means is very important. In a partnership you take the benefit and the responsibilities of that partnership. This is, in many ways, what we have not been able to do in our church here in Korea. We have done many events, many good-will projects, we have made many good relationships throughout Korean society, but we haven't asked people to share in the responsibility of making things happen, of making our burdens their burdens. Because we haven't taken that step to sharing the responsibilities as well as the privileges, we have not gained the confidence that we can overcome and that we can do things on our own. This is the problem with our community here in Korea, and this is the problem that we must overcome.
So, brothers and sisters, our True Parents have really given us a tremendous opportunity. They have given our entire world community a tremendous opportunity. The central project in our church's providence now is to build the World Peace Temple. This is the focus of our church's activities right now. They have given us, not only the Japanese church, but all of us, the Korean church, the American church, the European church, all of the Unification Church community, the responsibility to make this temple, the World Unification Church Temple, the temple for all the people in our movement and all the people who will join our movement.
This is an opportunity for us to not only be bystanders, people who watch the construction and the progression of profits, but to be participants, contributors, to the development of the providence. This is a tremendous opportunity to truly express our convictions, our faith, our belief, to really show and stand proudly in front of the world and say: "This is what I believe in." The construction of this temple is an expression of that faith.
Brothers and sisters, the way we practice and live our lives, the way we conduct ourselves in our physical body, in our physical lives, has a great deal of bearing on our spiritual body and spiritual soul. As we give back and contribute with our hard earned money, then that is actually faith practice. As we do so we gain confidence and strength in our faith. This is a very important reason why we really need to work together not only in Korea but throughout the world to build our Unification World Temple.
I ask you to think about this because it is a very important project. I don't know if you had an opportunity to look at the major sites for other religious denominations, like the Vatican in Rome for the Catholic Church, or even the major temples in Japan for Shintoism, or in India where they have some very beautiful temples. In those areas of pilgrimage, like Mecca, where people gather, they have been gathering there not only for a year, or ten years, or a hundred years, but for thousands of years. Those sites are sites of tremendous religious significance, devotion and worship. Just think about what we are proposing to build at this time for our community, which we know will continue to expand and grow. We are proposing to build the World HQ, the spiritual site, for all our brothers and sisters.
This site and those who contribute to that site will be recorded for the rest of time. The contributors to that church building project will have their names on the walls, based on their contribution. And this is not going to happen again. There is going to be only ONE World Unification Headquarters Temple. It is akin to having the opportunity as a Catholic to having your name written in the Vatican or in St. Peter's Basilica.
So, I hope that everybody really understands the significance of the church that we are building here in Korea. I certainly do. That's why I have made my contributions, quite a lot actually. My brother has, all the other leaders of our church have, so please think about this. It is actually not a church for just our community; it becomes a platform for our community to communicate on an equal status with other major churches here in Korea, to communicate directly with the nation.
We have done a lot of work, we have met a lot of people, we have brought former President Carazo here to our church, we will bring many more dignitaries to come to worship together with us in our church here in Chung Pa Dong, and the scale of this church is still not that big. But yet, we are bringing all these significant people because of the foundation which our True Parents have made.
Once we build this church the scale is multiplied many times and the level of the people we will bring to our congregation and to our services will continue to progress. The quality will grow. We will certainly have congressmen here worshiping together with us. We will have large business leaders, serious politicians. The Seoul City Mayor would probably come to our church, will have to, if we build this church! Not only that, but we will communicate directly with Korean press and the media here, as a major Korean religion. So, when anything comes up regarding religions they will have to come to us. This church and this temple is a platform for us to directly witness to the nation of Korea, substantially, not conceptually.
I'm not talking about gathering a hundred thousand people for a big rally and a big party. We are talking about gathering a congregation centered upon a holy site and building that congregation over the next ten years, hundred years, and one thousand years.
This is fundamentally different. This is an investment for our future, for your future, because as we build this temple and congregation, as we bring in leaders of the nation, leaders of business, they become your brothers and sisters. They will be in a position to help our entire community.
This is why we really need to understand the significance of this project. It is a very expensive undertaking. The land here in Seoul is extremely expensive, and in order to purchase that land we need to raise quite a lot of donations. I personally have put out a lot of money, maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars, for this project. There are other brothers and sisters in Japan who are doing the same. Recently there was a sister in Japan who has donated nearly eight hundred million Korean Won.
Our goal for this temple here in Korea is to raise about seventy-five million US dollars in donations. That means we need to find about seven thousand people who can donate ten thousand Dollars to build this temple. This is the challenge because in order for our faith community to achieve this kind of goal we need many more new people to come and support us. We need to bring in new brothers and sisters who can share our dreams, our responsibilities and burdens. This change in thought can actually make it happen. The reason why our church in Japan is able to raise funds is because they do witnessing. The majority of their fundraising is not from the existing members but from bringing new people to contribute to our church.
We really need to think seriously about the direction of our church here in Korea. There are many important and serious discussions which all of you here in Korea need to have with the ministers here. And the ministers have to have a serious discussion with all of our brothers and sisters and the congregations and with people who can help our congregation.
There are certainly people out there who can and will help. I will do my part. Every time I meet any of these dignitaries, I explain them about this wonderful church and the wonderful vision that our True Parents have for the world and the blessing that they are bringing. I ask them to come to church. Many of them say: "If you invite me, I will consider it." Some even say: "I will come." The other day I was talking with the vice-chairman of the Green Cross cooperation here in Korea. They are quite famous; you have seen the green crosses all over Korea. It is one of the major pharmaceutical companies here. I told him about our ministry here and about our wonderful head minister, Moon Hyung Jin, and how he gives very wonderful sermons. He said: "That's wonderful. Can I have some copies of sermons to listen to." So I said: "Sure, I will send you some copies but I will also invite you to come to see our church and listen to our service." And he said that he will come.
Brothers and sisters, what we have to offer is tremendous. We just need to have the conviction to share that tremendous blessing and gift that we have been given. As we share our conviction and express it in our faith and actions, we will be in the position to be able to lead other people, even people of great status. So the question is our personal conviction. What kind of conviction are you going to have in your life? I have made my decision and I lead my life without apology. I express the views and convictions that I have. At the times that I express them they are sometimes not necessarily the most popular, but I feel that it is necessary for me to speak of my beliefs.
So, with that said I thank you very much.
Heavenly Father, most beloved True Parents!
Thank You so much for the message that You have given to us today. We feel that we are living in a most precious time in history, with True Parents here on this earth and with such a powerful message, that You have brought through them to this world. Now the task for us is to truly be confident in ourselves and in our beliefs, to not shy away from the public and people, thinking that they will attack us or criticize us like in the past. The task is to have a new level of conviction that builds as we share this message, our belief and our faith.
You have truly blessed us. You have waited for us for six thousand years. We have heard that so many times, but let us truly understand and actualize this in the way we carry ourselves. Let us not only conceptually understand that we are precious to You and then leave the sanctuary with shoulders slumped and walking out with no confidence. We pray that we may understand that message and put our shoulders back, that we may have pride in who we are, that we may share this message and confidence with others, that we may be proud of our beliefs, our tradition and our heritage and be able to share this with the rest of the world.
We believe that when we do that You will create miracles and move the hearts and minds of men and women. You will help them understand and be inspired in their own lives to become those sharers of faith. Thank You so much that you have given us this time, that we may truly reflect and understand the providential significance of our lives here, that we may understand that we are not only living for this age but we are connected to thousands of future generations and that we are connected to thousands of past generations.
We pray that we are not only speakers of our Unification tradition but that we are actors and contributors in this tradition, that we may be those that bring this foundation and church to the next level. Let us have this kind of ownership and stewardship, that kind of heart that wishes to see a child truly succeed and blossom. Let us know that the Unification Church is our child. It is our baby. Let us know that each and any one of us must become parents to that church and truly nurture it, grow it, build it with confidence, have it stand before the world proudly and allow it to communicate and share that empowering message to the rest of humanity forever.
We pray that You can give us that kind of strength, faith and devotion. Fill us with that energy. We offer all these things to You in gratitude and everlasting love, in our own blessed, central families' name that are here together as one. Aju!