Unification News for February 2003

The Cheon Il Guk Blessing of True Parents

By 3.00am on February 6th, 2003, a full four hour before the start of the morning's program, the grand hall at Chungpyung Holy Mountain (Chungpyung Lake Heaven and Earth Training Center) was absolutely jam-packed as the first of more than 10,000 expected guests made sure of their place in the historic "Cheon Il Guk Blessing" of True Parents and of all Blessed Couples.

Billed as the "Marriage of the Lamb" by US Family Federation President Michael Jenkins, this Blessing was held along with the joint celebration of True Parents' birthday. "Of all the events in human history, today's is the most important," said Rev. Hwang Sun Jo in his opening greetings. "One day when you go to spirit world you will realize just how important it was for you to be here today. You will be eternally proud of it."

The Cheon Il Guk Blessing signifies an important new level in God's providence. It was his ideal of creation that Adam and Eve receive his blessing in the Garden of Eden when both had reached maturity. The wedding day would have been the day that the ideal of love was first realized on earth. For God too, it would be a day of joy and fulfillment when his family and lineage could start on the earth. When all of this was lost, God worked for thousands of years to once again find a pure son and daughter that he could bless. However, Jesus, the Second Adam, could never marry and it was left to the time of the Second Coming.

2576 American members have responded to True Parents' call to come to Korea for the Blessing, Birthday Celebrations and the Cheon Il Guk special national activity. Also in attendance were more than 2500 Japanese and 2500 Korean members, and notably more than 200 VIPs from the World Summit Council being held in Seoul in conjunction with the Blessing. Somehow these hardy souls -- including several former heads of state, and three Nobel Peace prize winners -- managed to get on a bus in Seoul at 4am to be here in time. Even more impressively, they were all wearing white robes and blessing sashes like everyone else.

Coming to Chungpyung

The fact is that coming to Chungpyung and staying here even for a few days is extremely challenging for everyone. There is nowhere to sleep, nowhere to sit, and almost nowhere to move. Many found themselves arriving past midnight after a 14-hour flight still needing to register, find out the schedule, and get ready. A simple visit to the bathroom can take half an hour in these circumstances!

Yet, for the past five days, as the special workshop for the 'Cheon Il Guk' owners was held here, everyone rose to the occasion to conquer all the difficulties and the demanding schedule, which began each morning with Hoondok with True Parents for a couple of hours, followed by the typical Chungpyung schedule of lectures and of course ansoo holy song sessions. This continued until midnight, when the hunt for a spot to sleep begins, and then we started again.

But, oh, it's worth it. It's like a giant homecoming and everywhere you look, there are people you haven't seen for years. Why did we come? For twenty, thirty years or more we've been waiting for the Unification of Korea. Even the Hoondok we've been reading from fifteen and twenty five years ago speaks of the Unification as an imminent possibility, we are still waiting. God is still waiting. This can be the year.

The Blessing

Finally after all the waiting, True Parents and True Family entered the auditorium just after 7am. Father, as always, looked his best in a splendid cream white tux, and Mother -- well, I think it is safe to say we haven't seen Mother like this before in a beautiful wedding dress, complete with tiara and bridesmaids holding the train. With great grace and dignity, but also with big smiles, they moved to the stage.

The ceremony itself was simple, and inspiring. Father and Mother bowed to report to God, and then turned to offer a prayer with the whole audience together. Then Rev. Kwak read the "Ko Chun Moon" or report to heaven, followed by the Holy Water ceremony and the declaration and benediction prayer by True Father. There was the exchange of gifts, with Mother giving Father a watch and Father giving Mother a ring with a big diamond you could see from the back of the room! It was all very beautiful and warm, one big family together.

In this way God's aching heart was eased, for his son and daughter were being recognized before the whole world. In 1960 when the Holy Blessing first took place, there was bitter opposition on all sides. On the day before the ceremony, Father had to report to the police station to deal with various challenges and the ceremony itself was very small and humble, almost held in secret. Today, however, the world was there to see it, both in person and through live webcasting. We all pray that True Parents will enjoy many more years of happiness together.

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