Hoon Dok Hae in Afghanistan: Small Miracles are the Best Kind

Marilyn Angelucci
December, 2000

I think that it was the beginning of November when we received the word. Every nation in the world was to organize a Hoon Dok Conference for 360 people before the end of the year. Well, for us this was close to impossible. My husband and I had been working in India for the past three years with Afghan Refugees. Actually we are the Cain National Messiahs for Afghanistan but because of the Civil War it is impossible to work there now.

So we are working in India with WFWP with some projects to support Afghan Refugees. We have an afternoon school for 100 Afghan children and a sponsorship program for children who otherwise cannot attend school. We have many good contacts through our Service Projects, that was not the problem. Being just the two of us to do such a task was the insurmountable problem. At any rate we marched forward, like good heavenly soldiers

First we sent our budget proposal to IIFWP and we were granted sufficient money to educate 120 Afghanis. This was the first miracle. At this point we realized that truly Father wants to educate "all " the nations of the world and we were to facilitate that mission. Big ones, little ones, providential or not, every country is important in the eyes of God. So now we had the money and we had the motivation, but how to fulfill?

At that time we were notified that Asian HQ was organizing a Capacity Building Seminar for all Asian Leaders. The purpose of the seminar was to pass down the victory of the Conference in the Philippines to all the Asian countries. By the grace of God, my husband could attend this seminar and received so much support and guidance that proved to be invaluable towards the success of our conference for Afghanistan. My husband came back inspired and really to go.

As we seriously considered our situation we realized that this was the time of Ramazan.

Ramazan is the time of fasting for the Moslem people. Every day from sunrise to sunset for one month they must fast according to Islamic Law. This year the month was from the end of November until the end of December. So how could we even do a one-day seminar when none of the participants could eat? And whether or not they would attend such a function during this time was another question.

We contacted our Asian HQ and were told that Frank Kaufmann was assigned to support our area. He was very helpful but still it was up to us to fulfill. Considering neither my husband nor I had even attended a Hoon Dok Conference it seemed so elusive, we couldnít even imagine the format or proceeding to follow. Unfortunately we had never succeeded to send an Afghan VIP from India to an International Hoon Dok Conference. So we really had no substantial support. At this point we had no staff, no place and no time, but still we marched forward.

At that point we received the phone call that chanced everything. Dr. Kaufmann called and informed us that Rev. Kwak had decided that because Dr. Kaufmann was to be in the area for another engagement that he should come and support the Afghan Conference and that we should do a conference for 40-70 people. When we heard this news it felt like the hand of God had descended from the throne of heaven to save us from our despair. Now we felt that no obstacle was insurmountable. But as we know from our past experiences, as soon as we made our new determination, then the next obstacle showed itís pretty face. Our Conference must be held on Dec 1st because this was the time period that Dr. Kaufmann had for us. That was eight days away. Somehow now our reaction was different. We could feel that God cared about our success and now we didnít worry about making mistakes or not bringing the victory. Now we were working together with God and thatís what pushed us forward with confidence

With only eight days away we couldnít find a Hotel, so where to go with our orphaned conference. Than the inspiration came. As I mentioned previously we have been supporting our WFWP activities for the Afghan Refugees and therefore had friends at the Embassy of Afghanistan. Just a few days before 70 of our children had been invited to the Embassy by the Ambassador to do a Culture Program for him and the staff. They were very moved to see their children sing and dance to their traditional songs. Of course, at the end of the show, the Ambassador had said, "If there is anything I can do for you, let me know." So we made the official request to Embassy to use their conference facilities for our conference. The Ambassadorís reply," We must help them because they are doing so much for the Afghan Children." Here we can see the Principle in action, another small miracle. Because our members had invested for the sake of the Afghan people unconditional the Embassy had no choice but to allow us to use their facilities. The other aspect was that they were all very happy and enthusiastic to work together with us for the victory of the conference. So the problem of staff and place was solved. Also holding it at the Embassy solved the problem of time or when we can hold the conference. Because they too must follow the fast of Ramazan, the staff could suggest a schedule that would be acceptable to all the community people as well. So we marched forward, but at this time it seemed like we were on a magic carpet. A magic carpet that had been created by our True Parentís foundation, but now we could see results from our own foundation which helped us to feel that actually we were contributing to our Fatherís world wide victory.

The day of the conference arrived. We had decided to hold the conference from the afternoon until evening. Everything was prepared. All the details had been worked out and we were ready to begin. Dr. Kaufmann had arrived the night before and we had sufficient time to brief him and create our internal unity. We were at the Embassy together with the staff and close contacts about fifteen in all. The time to begin the conference had arrived but the other guests had not. We waited patiently. What could we do? Everyone was in his or her place, we only needed the participants. As you can imagine we started to become nervous. But it was different this time. As I stood on the Embassy steps I could feel the support of the creation and the spirit world. I was listening to the birds and examining the beautiful roses in the garden. Suddenly I was taken aback by a beautiful robin that was singing so loudly, obviously to get my attention. I listened to his message and heard him say clearly to my heart, "Donít worry, they are coming". I was so comforted I went back into the Embassy with a smile on my face.

Of course, it was true. The next time I went to the steps to look out about twenty-five people were coming through the gates. Then another ten followed by a group of five, and it just continued until the conference room was full. Tears came to my eyes as I realized that someone had called them and they were answering that call. Most of them had been to the mosque as is their tradition and I know that Mohammed or one of his associates had reminded them of their promise to attend. The spiritual world was determined to make this conference a success.

Rev. Kwak had said to bring between 40-70 people to the conference. We had 70 participants who gave their utmost attention throughout the proceedings. It was such a distinguished group and very appreciative of the content that they heard.

We are very grateful to everyone that helped, from Rev. Kwak to Dr. Kaufmann to Asian HQ. to the Embassy Staff. But most of all we are eternally grateful to the spiritual world, our ancestors and supporters from the Islamic spiritual world that we can feel still with us, even as I write this piece. How I wish I could see them and know how they will work, but I guess that would eliminate the element of faith which we must demonstrate with our deepest sincerity. Therefore we continue to march forward anticipating the small miracles that inevitable lie before us.