Unification News for March 2003

Busan, YeonJe Gu

by K. Tassey

We must all learn to speak the Korean language. I was given the opportunity to live in Busan for nearly 4 years after the 1989 Blessing. For many years before that, Father had asked us to learn Korean in order to understand True Parents heart and the heart of the Fatherland. I became determined to learn Korean at that time, and I moved away from the main dormitory alone and into a CARP center at the radical DongEui University in Pusan and chose to stay in Korea although there was a request that I return to my mission in NY. It was then that I was able to lay the ground for this heartistic return to Busan through learning the language and cultural heart.

Busan is a high-energy city of 4,000,000 citizens. They are ocean people. Rough, but full of love and quick to tightly hold your hand or sit you down for a rest or a bite to eat. It is a wide, fast-developing city, with rugged mountain landscapes and beaches, but to meet the people you would never know that it is Koreas 2nd largest population center.

Contrary to what many believe, Korea is not a backwards, behind-the-times culture. As a nation Korea has, on a grand scale, adopted the use of email, computers, cell phones, high-speed internet and those who hold science degrees are almost double per capita that of the US. I love Korea and I love Busan. The food is great and the energy in the air more than compensates for the pollution in the air. It is the city where Father suffered, discovered and wrote the DP and founded the church.

Many of the precious Korean brothers and sisters I'd come to know in Busan were there and our reunion was heavenly. We had become family from 89-92 and it made this experience all that much more powerful and emotional.

For those brothers and sisters who are experiencing Korea for the first time, this is the opportunity to create the setting for your next visits. It will be a treasure for us to build friendships with those whom we met during this campaign or were matched to in Brotherhood/Sisterhood ceremonies and to our member counterparts in Korea. We should invite them to stay in our homes in the US; to open our doors to their children, to let them know that we love and support them.

I was deeply moved to see harmony amongst our "foreign" members, in the midst of minor confusion. It was only a week that we'd all spent in our new "hometown of our heart" and there was no sense of discord or disunity- only determination to go out and spread the word. At both ChungPyung and our areas I met with long lost friends and was amazed at the response from US members.

Even though all of us were resolved to bring many people to the conferences, it was profoundly clear that our Korean members had already been working hard to build the foundation for local citizens to give their support. Our district includes a total of 13 sub-districts and we held meetings for each one from 2/10/03- 2/14/03, ending with the main district event on Saturday 2/15/03.

At the Dong (sub-district avg. 20,000 population) meetings throughout the week there was a moderate turnout. This was due to the fact that our meetings were set up for 11am and 2pm on the weekdays. However, on Saturday we held the Gu (district) ceremony which covers a population of about 250,000 and several hundred good quality family people came. It was a great success for our district, which also includes the City Hall and is the government center of Busan. The wife of the couple with whom I was matched in Bro/Sisterhood was overwhelmed with emotion and said to me in Korean that she feels like a spiritual millionaire.

Cynthia Hiromitsu and Asechi-San were our two team mothers, representing the US and Japan. They did a great job of organizing our daily events. We took turns giving the opening invitational speech and singing Korean songs. The attendees joined in with us and were visibly touched by our presence and the purpose of our visit.

One of our members, Elder Im is the political District Chief of our area. He has become my Uncle and Big Brother. Mr. Im's mother (Mrs. Kim) was the famous first Busan member who met Father and Rev. Kim at BeomNetKol. He, his mother, his family and siblings all provided us with comfort and support during my original stay in Busan and they were also on the frontline for this campaign. Sadly, Grandmother Mrs. Kim had passed to Spirit World several years ago, but she was with us nonetheless. Mr. Im was recently appointed by Father to head new oceanic enterprises worldwide and had to leave two days after we arrived to go to the Antarctic for 3 months.

NY Regional Director Rev. Kim and Pusan Regional Director Rev. Pak lead the charge in our area. The spirit was one of joy, brotherhood and victory- a contrast to the days of the call for indemnity and sacrifice. For me, it would take a lifetime to forge friendships at home such that I have been given by God in Korea. It is because of the Korean heart and their closeness to suffering that such love can abound.

Thanks to Pusan Reg. Director Rev. Pak, Pusan Womens Fed. Director Mrs. Kim Hui Kyung, Mr. Im and Family and all Busan members. If we speak the Korean language, we will, by default, make the good elements of the Korean character our own.

In this experience I can better understand the experience of the Japanese wives who came to work and suffer and move the hearts of Americans in the US. I have seen the wisdom of Father and Mother in utilizing this dynamic to open the hearts of people around the world.

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