Unification News for July 2005
Tribal Crown of Peace
by Bill and Donna Selig
The Selig clan held a Tribal Crown of Peace ceremony in our home in Rockville, Maryland, on June 9, 2005. It was attended by my parents, Joseph and Janet Selig of Florida, and my brother and sister-in-law, Barry and Judy Selig of Maryland.
My family has never been especially religious. Their attitude toward the movement has been supportive but standoffish, so we've always agonized how to bring them closer to the Peace Kingdom. They've accepted the Holy Wine Blessing in the past, but we wanted to bring them to a higher awareness.
The perfect opportunity came in the form of our daughter's graduation from high school. My parents made the long trip to Maryland and stayed in our home, giving us the chance to attend them. Since they're now in their mid-80s, we know clearly that time is no longer on our side. Donna and I made a determination to go through with the ceremony; the question was how.
Spirit world gave us the answer almost immediately. The past few years, in trying to clarify our position in the liberation ceremonies for Chung Pyung, we'd asked my parents and relatives about our family's history, so on that foundation, we were inspired to create a PowerPoint presentation and use that as the lead-in to the ceremony.
The first Selig to come to America was my great-grandfather, Herman Selig, who emigrated from Germany in 1869 at age 22. The following year he married Amelia Forkish, who also came from Germany. We therefore had 136 years of territory to cover.
Donna has done extensive research on the Internet and found census records dating back to the turn of the century. She spent time at the Mormon Family Research Center in Maryland; through the Internet, she made contacts with fellow genealogists from Europe and Israel. With information from the census reports, we traveled to New York and visited the apartment building where my great-grand parents lived and even the house where I was born.
Besides pictures of family members and census reports, we supplemented the show with period shots of the Brooklyn Bridge, the Statue of Liberty, Ebbets field, a photo of my dad's first car (a 1928 Whippet that he bought with two friends for $50), and a movie poster of "Gone with the Wind," which my parents saw on their first date.
The presentation, along with narration and music, followed our family's path from New York to Maryland when I was 7 years old. There were photos of aunts, uncles, cousins, our blessing in 1982, and Hannah's birth in 1987. (She is the first Selig female since 1914.) The last slide said, "Not the end." It was a total success, and everyone loved every second of it!
Tribal Crown of Peace Ceremony
Hannah served the Holy Wine and then I gave a toast (a lengthy one), thanking our ancestors and the Providence that brought them to America, and my parents for their 64 years of marriage. The groundwork was laid and the spiritual atmosphere perfect, and so I launched into the speech I've carried in my heart for 30 years.
I spoke about our True Parents and their vision and lifetime activities. I talked about their tireless efforts to bring people together regardless of race and religion, and about our work in Korea, Germany, Europe, America, and most recently in the Middle East.
I testified to the pilgrimages these past two years and the coming together of Jews, Christians, and Muslims. As peacemakers who've sacrificed so much, I declared, Rev. and Mrs. Moon have earned the title King and Queen of Peace.
Following their example, and as a Blessed Central Family, I declared that the Selig clan has now entered the Peace Kingdom as a King and Queen of Peace at the clan level. Everyone agreed enthusiastically and toasted to true love.
Did we use crowns? No. My parents would not have been able to fathom that, but I prayerfully used the language and spirit. In relating to my family, we've tried to follow Father's attitude when he says. "America belongs to those who love it the most." Likewise, by doing all the research and prayer conditions, my family recognizes that we are the spiritual leaders and owners of our clan.
We offer this testimony in the hope that other families in a similar situation may follow this model.
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