Unification News for May 2004

Ambassadors for Peace Awards in Harlem, NY

by Chaplain Daryl M. Clarke

On Friday, April 16th 2004 a National Level "Ambassadors of Peace Awards" Luncheon was held at the Adam Clayton Powell Jr. State Office Building in Harlem. Uniting with True Parents direction to hold this event in all fifty states before True Parents Day the leaders and members of the New York Region immediately went to work.

Centering on the unity of all New York departments, Bishop Thomas Heaven Lee, Rev. Alan Inman, and Rev. Bruce Grodner skillfully crafted a program using the March 23rd event in Washington, DC as a model.

The event was accepted by True Parents as representative of all states. The awards luncheon was held at the "Windows Over Harlem" in the State Building with 350 in attendance. The Honorable Congressman Charles B. Rangel was given the "Leadership and Good Governance for Peace Award". The "Living for World Peace" Award recipients were the Rev. Dr. Charles Kenyatta, Honorable Una Clarke, Honorable Dr. Roy Hastick. Also in attendance were Dr. and Mrs. Wyatt Tee Walker, Assemblywoman Geraldine Daniels, Bronx and Manhattan Borough President representatives and a host of dignitaries, clergy and public officials.

The emcee, Rev. Alan Inman was supported by a highly efficient program staff; Mrs. Phylis Kim, Dr. Thomas Walsh, Mr. Antonio Bentacourt, Mrs. Alexa Ward, Mrs. Karen Judd Smith, Mrs. Beryl Green, Mrs. Cynthia Shibuya and Rev. Michael Balcomb.

The New York Family Church Choir opened the program with inspiring selections to prepare the atmosphere. The program climaxed when the ARC (Addicts Rehabilitation Choir) of Harlem sang four consecutive soul saving selections that brought the house down. As the audience was lifted up with great expectation, a miracle occurred. Mr. Antonio Bentacourt was asked to share a few words, he concluded by singing a beautiful Italian song, just as he sang the last verse, Congressman Rangel arrived to join him in the song. Everyone was in amazement!

Congressman Rangel was awarded by Dr. Chang Shik Yang and Dr. Thomas Walsh. In his acceptance speech the congressman praised the grandfather of Alexa Fish-Ward, who was the only ranking white officer in WWI that lead an all black Army Infantry of soldiers into battle. The 369th Army who was stationed in Harlem, was a highly decorated company that helped to bring peace in the world at that time. He went on to talk about his experience in the Korean War as a wounded soldier fighting to liberate the world from the spread of Communism.

The program ended with pictures and autographs of the Congressman. It was a wonderfully successful event.

The next morning at HHD in East Garden Dr. Yang reported to True Parents and offered a photo album together with all the plagues, citations and proclamations that were given to them by various key figures from different fields of leadership.

All leaders and members who worked together to make this national offering a great success gathered with True Parents for a photo. We celebrated the victory together with True Parents. We were all very happy. Mansei!

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