Unification News for July 2004

Chicago Leadership Summit on Witnessing & Education - Empowering Tribal Messiahs, Growing our Church

by Mary Anglin

This is how the Midwest block summit began June 21-23, 2004 - Chicago, IL, as we were greeted by Rev. Michael Jenkins: "This is a very special time in history. We’re living in the time when we’re directly serving True Parents and installing the Peace Kingdom. Our task is to address the fundamental providence of God, so that the 2nd Israel and Elder Son Nation can fulfill its mission…. From that point of view you are very special people. God chose this nation to be the Elder Son in relation to the Mother & Father nations. Our identity as Blessed Central Families is crucial. You cannot analyze your status without knowing your identity. We’re the Leviticus group within the chosen people. We should be more holy, true and sacrificial than any people on earth."

The National Level Leadership Summit was held in Ocean City, Maryland immediately following the Capital Hill event of March 23rd. That Summit was a standing room only event, with members crowding in from all over the nation. It was decided then that every Block would hold a similar event, allowing many more members to take part.

The Midwest Block convened June 21st through the 23rd in Chicago. Participating states included: Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Texas, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa, and Wisconsin.

Three days was definitely not enough to properly examine and digest the incredible presentations given by Rev. Jenkins, Rev. Schanker, Dr. Hendricks, Rev. McCarthy and Mrs. Poppy Richie, who were the National Level presenters. Dr. T.L. Barrett gave a rousing presentation, the moral being, "have no fear". Rev. Bruce Sutchar of Chicago gave a talk on the heart of witnessing.

Honest and frank reports were offered by each state present. We touched on the realities of blessed family life, methods of outreach, church development, community development, and the stumbling blocks we recognized within our own areas.

It was a time of honest sharing, in which we didn’t worry about how good or bad we looked. It was very clear that this summit was not a time for ‘look-good’ reports, but a time to truly empower the Tribal Messiahs.

Rev. Jenkins gave a very deep explanation of the course in America through the past 21 years. "We have not touched the witnessing providence with the full providential force since 1983. At that time we began the course to unite with the Fatherland, Motherland and Elder Son Nations. We had to make a foundation of substance with Christianity at that time as well. There was no ministerial outreach before 1983. We’ve been in that course for 21 years. We’re going according to Heaven’s mandate & providence." Many members feel we’ve been in a barren desert the past 21 years, so miserable that no one could join. To hear Rev. Jenkins explain that we actually brought victory on the assigned course (uniting with the Father & Mother nations) was an incredible liberation. Now we can pick up the witnessing mantle again and see incredible growth, incredible new life.

Rev. Kasbow from Michigan reported that though he decided to hold events for those from the secular field, his events kept getting filled with their Religious-Leader contacts. Rev. Hernandez from Texas compassionately reported how much he is pulled to do ‘in-reach’ before outreach. Rev. Anglin from Kansas reported about instituting daily inspirational e-mails as a way to be in constant communication with her tribe, giving them spiritual food daily. Rev. Sakai from Wisconsin reported humorously how they finally have been able to move into the realm of ‘guest-friendly’ Sunday Service. Rev. Triggol from Indiana reported about setting up groups of sisters under her tutelage who can take care of the families, even when the leader is away. Rev. Ngoran from Oklahoma testified about moving to his wife’s hometown and the great assistance of the spiritual world there. Rev. Bard from Minnesota shared about how his Regional Director has been teaching intensive 30-hour one-on-one workshops, having a success ratio of over 90%. Mrs. Maria Kartel from Iowa shared the realities of working in a state where the Blessed Families live so far from each other, each needing to discover and implement the most effective ways they can work alone. Rev. Swearson from Missouri gave moving insight about how we must be as Father described himself when he first came to America, as a firefighter or doctor, to save the broken people. Rev. Vincenz reported how, even though his mission is business, spirit world is guiding him to good contacts to whom he’s able to teach Divine Principle. Mrs. Jeannette Tanaka gave a report on the very well-organized sisters groups in Chicago, and how they’ve been able to outreach within their neighborhoods. Rev. Lester Reese reported how much of a rebirth experience the Ocean City Summit had been for him, and that he’s been working to incorporate the ‘gifts-based ministry’ concept in Ohio. Rev. Orikasa in Oklahoma has just begun using Rev. Seo’s one-one-one teaching method which he feels makes a very strong emotional connection between student and teacher.

Rev. Sung Jong Seo gave a presentation on his teaching method of intensive one-on-one three day workshops, his tools being the color-coded Divine Principle book, and a lecture on Father’s Life Course. This has brought incredible result. Rev. Jae Suk Kim focused on how necessary it is to take care of our brother and sisters. He had many points of insight on how we could become more professional externally, and more effective internally through a committed heart. Rev. Gi Young Shin offered quiet support throughout the summit. Bishop Ki Hoon Kim offered wisdom and insight on various points throughout the workshop.

A very moving presentation was made by a local Chicago couple, Rev. Jhon and Mrs. Marina Acevedo. Doing Tong Bon Kyok Pa in Chicago’s Spanish community they’ve gained over 70 members in the past year. Through their incredible unity as a blessed couple, and dedicated effort they’ve brought new life to many people. They’ve offered to travel to any area to assist families in setting up Tong Ban Kyok Pa outreach.

As the summit was drawing near its end, Rev. Anglin admitted that she didn’t want to attend Ocean City. She was tired, burned out and not wanting to just sit and listen for three days as leadership dictated more instruction. In attending, she discovered then that our movement had changed. The leaders were wanting to hear honest opinions, situations, and suggestions from the field. A new day was dawning as headquarters fashioned itself as an organization committed to assisting Tribal Messiahs gain victory. Hallelujah!

The final presentation of the summit was from Dr. Yang, who immediately flew to Chicago after arriving in America from Korea. He reported on Father’s current activities in Korea. Dr. Yang gave great support to Rev. Seo’s method of one-one-one teaching. He asked us how we can keep our mouths shut when we know the truth, and he told us that, "by practicing the truth we will be resurrected. People are completely changed by the truth. Let us start in this room. Each of us, if we change and show a new standard of faith and confidence the membership will change. We should show standard and then people will follow us. The 3,000 Blessed Families in America are really Chosen People."

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