Unification News for March 1999

Happy Birthday True Parents

Jorg Heller -- NYC

On February 21st, 1999 (January 6th, lunar) True Parents celebrated their Birthdays in Seoul, Korea. Rev. Joong Hyun Pak wanted to make a very special offering to True Parents on this very special day.

Rev. Pak had the inspiration that the United States of America, the nation with the strongest Christian Foundation in the world and the Elder Son Nation in God’s Providence today, together with Canada should congratulate True Parents in a unique and special way.

Rev. Pak asked all the regional directors to visit the Religious, Political and Social leaders in their Regions and tell them about True Parents Birthday and invite them to write a birthday greeting to True Parents. This greeting could be in the form of a letter with the official letterhead of the government office, a regular birthday card, or any available peace of paper. It was really the heart behind the greeting that was of importance, not necessarily the paper it was written on.

Rev. Pak felt that 2100 "congratulators" (I’m not sure if that is a proper word) of the highest caliber on this North American Continent should get inspired to wish True Parents long life, success and happiness.

We only had about ten days to do it and that was not much time. Many of us were wondering whether or not we could "pull this off." But our concern was unfounded. Everybody’s response was just great. People were so delighted and even honored to have this unique opportunity to wish True Parents a happy birthday. Brother and sisters had so many good experiences.

Religious leaders representing twelve major religions or Christian denomination were among the well-wishers. This was of great significance, since True Parents have invested so much time and energy into this continent; it was so great to see the religious leaders respond so well. Many felt that Jesus had a lot to do with their response. Since Father has appointed him to spiritually take charge in North America, he is now much more at liberty to work with the religious leaders here.

But it was not just the religious leaders. Several Governors, Senators and State Representatives were among the well wishers. People from the Entertainment world, Educators and Community Leaders from all walks of life participated in this blessing.

Pretty soon the flood of names that were reported to HQ’s overwhelmed us. I had created a database to keep track of all these names and soon there were five of us entering data simultaneously. I had bought two large and very beautiful leather bound presentation books but even with that, I began to wonder whether or not there was enough space for all the names.

Victor Matos, Piotr Sucharski, Dr. Hendricks, his oldest daughter Helena, and myself worked until the last moment to include as many names as possible in the list. Rev. Pak changed his flight plans from an early morning departure, to a late night departure in order to give us an extra ten hours to work. But when we realized that even this was not enough, Dr. Hendricks arranged with Rev. Pak to meet him at the airport on his way to Korea to hand him the books there. That gave us some more time, but when eventually we ran out of time, we had 2109 names on the birthday list. I am sure that this was no coincidence. We had a goal and Heavenly Father, Heung Jin Nim, Jesus Nim and the rest of the good spirit world helped us to fulfill it. However, we were not really finished, names were still coming in and it was impossible for us to add them to the list in time.

When Rev. Pak presented the birthday list to True Father, he was very happy. He signed the front pages of each book, as you can see in the picture. On Rev. Pak’s return from Korea he urged me to add every last name that had been received late to the birthday list. In our Tuesday morning leaders meeting he explained about the significance it would have in the future for someone’s name to be on the list. The two books containing the birthday list will be kept as an historical treasure. Future generations of those who signed the birthday list will be proud of their ancestors who had the vision, the heart, and the courage to befriend our True Parents during a time where most people in power would rather not be associated with them. The list now is complete and contains 2500 birthday greetings.

We all learned that the time has come, where we can be more confident, bold and brave to reach out to anyone at any time with God’s truth and love and be welcomed and received with an open heart.

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