Unification News for May 2003

IIFWP Myanmar: One Step At A Time

by Peeter Saarna

After 2 years of not being able to send people to international conferences, due to problems procuring passports or getting permission from the government to let people leave the country, we decided to start monthly meetings.

Our first meeting was in December 2002 at the Fuji Cafe in a private room with sofa style seating and a plate glass window overlooking a lovely garden.

Our first session focused on Rev. Dr. Moon’s speech during Assembly 2002, called, "Renewing the United Nations." We introduced ourselves, read the speech, drank Cappuccino juice or tea and had discussions. There was a nice brotherly spirit present at the meeting.

The second meeting, in January, was held at Mi Casa Restaurant, a more upscale place than the last, in a private room. We read Dr Gordon Anderson's paper, "Governance and the Role of Religion in Peace and Security." [Note: Dr. Anderson is the Secretary General of the Professors World Peace Academy.] His paper can be found at: http://www.iifwp.org/Activities/2002/Convocation/ This facilitated discussion amongst our various participants. We were happy to have a top Moslem leader come.

After meeting with Rev Amos Chin we decided to professionalize our meetings. We appointed Rev Amos Chin to be the Chairman of our February meeting. It was decided that I would be the reader and that at the February meeting we would announce the venue and date of the March meeting as well as decide on the Chairman, Reader and 3 commentators for the March meeting.

The February meeting was held at Cafe Dibar in a private room. We had various coffees, teas, juices as well as deserts. The paper read was, "The Social, Cultural, and Global Significance of the Family," (which was read at the World Association of NGO’s inaugural conference over 2 years ago).

Again the spirit was good. The participants seemed sincerely moved by the words read. U Maung Maung Ta Haj volunteered to be the Chairman of the next meeting. I volunteered to be the Reader and 3 others volunteered to prepare comments on next month's paper, "Loving Your Enemy in the Face of Terror." [From a report written by Nadine Andre at an historic meeting with Rev. Dr. Moon, Minister Louis Farrakhan, and 21 religious leaders after September 11th, 2001, the great terrorist attacks -- see: http://www.iifwp.org/Activities/2001/Assembly/Nadine.shtml

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