Articles From the February 1994 Unification News
Mother in Moscow and Minsk
by Renee Corley--Moscow
After her visit to Kiev, True Mother and her entourage arrived in Moscow on the morning of Sunday, Nov. 21.
This was Mother's third visit to the capital of the former Soviet Union. Almost one year ago to the day, as part of her 1992 world speaking tour, Mother had addressed an overflow crowd at the famous Oktyabrskaya cinema. At that time despite our members' best efforts, we were unable to secure the Kremlin's Palace of Congresses, but we promised Mother that next time she would speak in the Kremlin!
Nevertheless, this proved to be a monumental undertaking--virtually impossible. Because of the tense political situation following the October Revolution, the Kremlin was absolutely off-limits to any group which could be even remotely seen as religious or political. Added to this was the opposition by certain elements to having a "organization"in the Kremlin.
The time before Mother's arrival was an unbelievable spiritual battle, as we tried to go through every channel, using every VIP contact we had, to rent the Kremlin. There were many "heart attack" situations, especially when the other theaters we had rented as backups suddenly canceled. Even four days before her arrival, we still had nowhere for Mother to speak!
But thanks to Heavenly Father's help, the impossible became possible, and on Nov. 21 at 4pm True Mother walked out on the stage of the Kremlin Palace of Congresses before nearly 6,000 people.
The next morning, Monday, Nov. 22, True Mother and her entourage flew on to Minsk, the capital of Belarus.
The highlight of Mother's visit was the enthusiastic and personal welcome given by the first lady of Belarus, Mrs. Irina Shushkevich. This warm and unassuming lady, who long has been a supporter of our activities in her country, met Mother at the Minsk airport and brought her to the hotel in the president's limousine!
Later that day Mrs. Shushkevich sat in the audience at the National Opera and Ballet Theater as True Mother addressed approximately 800 people. It was only the first lady's innate shyness and humility that kept her from taking the stage to introduce True Mother. In every other way her support for True Parents' work was evident.
The next day Mother had a few free hours before traveling to the next city, and Mrs. Shushkevich came to the hotel to visit Mother. As Mother spoke deeply with the first lady, there was a genuine warmth and affection between these two women. We also heard that Mother was very pleased because until then Belarus was the only nation on her speaking tour that had received her at such a high level.
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