Unification News for October 2004

Blessed Children of Omaha

by Eugene Curtin

The Blessed Children of Omaha, Neb., are alive and well as two recent events demonstrate. In addition to organizing their very own workshop in July, they recently spent a long, sweaty day helping build a basketball court in the inner city.

The spiritual fire seems to have been lit at Camp Seeley in northern California this past July when seven second-generation children from Omaha attended church camp in that mountainous retreat. They returned from that week-long experience complete with e-mail addresses of new friends, hilarious tales of adventure, and proficiency in a Korean handball game impossible to spell but which resembles Dodgeball.

They also returned from their mountain haven with a conviction that "BC's" ĘC as they ubiquitously refer to themselves ĘC are just the best kids imaginable, and proud that they should be counted among their number.

The flush of enthusiasm for their camp experience had barely faded when a group of the older blessed children began making plans for a weekend workshop of their own. It would, they let us know, be THEIR workshop, held Friday through Sunday, organized by them, run by them and managed by them. We parents were called upon only to deliver the lectures (the subjects to be decided by the BCs), and the pizza.

Kori and Ben Christiansen, along with Jesse Curtin, took the lead in giving form to the workshop, drawing up a schedule, assigning lectures to parents, and interspersing recreational activities (that Korean Dodgeball game, again) throughout the weekend. It culminated in an effort to construct from cardboard a replica of the first Unification Church buildiing that was itself built from cardboard and scrap wood.

The lectures, overseen by the Rev. Akiyoshi Kinami, dealt with the principles of creation, the parallels of history, and the 400-year preparation period for the advent of the messiah.

In Mid-September, some 20 blessed children under the leadership of Christina Yamagata, our STF representative in Nebraska, and Lynelle (Kisicki) Curtin, helped members of the Metropolitan Omaha Builders Association build a concession building and basketball court on the gounds of a church in Omaha's inner city. Involvement with the project was an STF Service for Peace activity.

All day long the kids shoveled dirt and gravel and stacked stones and bricks. They acquitted themselves impressively and won the admiration of the church pastor who invited them all back for the Grand Opening in April and for a get-together with the children of his church.

If movements are to be judged, then let them be judged by the quality of their children. Here in Omaha, we parents are proud of the selflessness and idealism that infuse our children and which represent the highest ideals of our movement.

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