Unification News for April / May 1999

True Mother Visit to Taiwan

Ralph Jensen -- Taipei, Taiwan

True Mother's visit in Taiwan was a great success. True Mother arrived in Taiwan on the afternoon of April 21 on the airport of Taipei, where we expected her with about 50 unification members, VIPs and National Messiahs. In a convoy - headed by a police car - we drove to the Grand Hyatt Hotel of Taipei. There she was greeted again by another 50 unification church members and the hotel manager presented a gift to True Mother. In the evening we (National Messiahs, Prof. Chang (Taiwan), Dr. Kyung Hee Chin (Bridgeport University) and Peter Kim) had dinner with True Mother in the President Suite where Mother stayed. During that time Mother greatly praised Prof. Chang for his merits for the Taiwan movement. Prof. Chang studied physics at the university of Athens, Ohio in the USA 30 years ago. After returning to Taiwan he joined the unification movement (I don't know exactly when). When the church was banned he had to endure many difficulties, including losing his position as a university professor. Still he witnessed to many students. True Mother called him a 'noble gentleman' and wanted him to remember this title in Korean ('yang ban', I think it is). Prof. Chang is a very fine man, who doesn't talk much. I actually didn't know until then, that he speaks English well.

The next morning we had Hun Dok Hoi with Mother in the President suite. Peter Kim read from the book of Father's prayers. Immediately afterwards we left for the Taiwan Cultural University, where Mother received an honorary doctorate degree. I have been told that the head of that university is very restrictive concerning granting this title to anybody. Very few people ever received a honorary degree from that university. Again, Mother's convoy was guided a police car through the traffic jams of Taipei.

There were a few other meetings which True Mother attended, including a lunch for VIPs at the Hyatt Hotel (more than hundred people). I think this was Mother's first experience with the Chinese tradition of lunching and meeting and she did not like it very much. Background: Chinese like to eat, going to lunch, dinner whatever has great importance. During these events they freely meet each other, going around exchanging name cards, introducing themselves to other VIPs, promoting their various causes, businesses, whatsoever. Some people left in the middle of the lunch, well all this is quite normal procedure, but clearly not suited to receive True Mother. Mother endured through about half of the event and then decided to leave. Rev. Jae Seok Lee (the Korean National Messiah) announced that she had to prepare for their evening speech. He later said, that was the first time, he received a thank you from True Mother for helping her to get away early.

The clear highlight was True Mother's speech in the TICC (Taipei International Convention Center). The hall was completely filled with 3200 people, with some more - especially couples with children - watching the event on a screen in another hall in the basement. I think about one third of these (or less) were unification members. The president of Taiwan sent a very warm fax message welcoming True Mother, which was read to the audience. After her speech Mother called True Father on Cheju Island. Via satellite link we could not only hear Father but also watch him on two huge screens on both sides of the hall. Together with Father Mother cut a cake (in real time). Some VIPs and members sang songs. Then Mother sang two songs (Akatombo, Edelweiss) and then True Father sang, culminating in Father and Mother singing Omaya Nunaya together.

This style of celebration was a bit unusual for many participants, so some began to leave - also because it was getting late. Father asked, why did everybody leave and Mother just said, "We still have half of them here". This was an awesome experience, seeing True Parents being so harmoniously and easily united across time and space.

I later heard that Peter Kim reported about 5 minutes to True Father and that he said that, compared to Japan, Taiwan was more successful.

The next morning we had once more HDH in Mother's suite. Again, Peter Kim read from Father's prayers. Then Mother's speech was read in Chinese. As far as I understood, Mother said, now everybody knows what she said, because the day before she spoke in English. Mother canceled breakfast and left soon afterwards to the airport, again in a convoy escorted by a police car.

For me it was the first time to see True Mother in person in this kind of subject position, except once before briefly in Frankfurt, Germany. I was amazed how beautiful she is.

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