Unification News for September 1998
Who Has Responsibility for the Second Generation?
by Mr. Nobuhiro Igarashi-Denmark
The education of the Second Generation (Blessed Children) has become more important since the victory of the 40 Million Couples Blessing. Even when we accomplish 360 million blessed couples and FFWPU is accepted in the world, if we do not realize ideal families, many people will be very disappointed. So we should think seriously about the education of the Second Generation.
When I was in Japan, I worked with the Second Generation Department for three years, from 1989 to 1991. I had the position of Dormitory Superintendent in a hostel for Blessed Children. At that time I had many precious, wonderful, difficult and unforgettable experiences. Unfortunately I had many failures. From this viewpoint, I want to tell my experiences of educating the Second Generation.
I took care of 30 children, 15 boys and 15 girls. They were all 12 years old and first-year (seventh grade) students. At that time I didnít have any experience with older children, because my eldest daughter was only seven years old. So I didnít know how to educate children of their age.
Surprisingly, I found there were three types of students. One third was a more Abel type, another third was the normal type and the other type was the little bit more difficult type. Although the last type were children of blessed couples, they had lonely minds and were a bit mixed-up. This was partly because their parents were too busy to look after them properly. Even though the Second Generation does not have original sin, they have lonely minds when they do not receive the full amount of love from their parents.
Since I didnít know how to educate the Second Generation fully, I endeavored to teach them according to the Divine Principle. In a sense their lifestyle was like a workshop. Each day they had morning service, and in the evening they had a night meeting. On Sunday, of course, they attended Sunday service, and on Saturday they were given lectures on Divine Principle.
Many of the students, especially the Abel types, developed their spirits at that time. I was honestly surprised and many times moved by their prayers and their attitudes of attending True Parents. They read the Divine Principle several times, and some read the Bible all the way through. Quite a few children were elected, by students of their school, to be leaders of sports clubs, class monitors and leaders of their school. Also they usually got high grades on their exams. Now they are the leaders of the Second Generation in Japan.
However, there were some who couldnít follow such a lifestyle, especially those who had lonely minds. They wanted to be loved by our staff members and me. Nevertheless, I only gave them the words of the Divine Principle and True Parents. Gradually, they began to get love by other means. It appeared in the form of mischief. At first some things such as candies, cakes and stationery were lost. Next furniture was broken and some money disappeared. I didnít know the reason. For more than half a year we had staff meetings every night to discuss how to take preventative measures. I tried to read many kinds of books on education and consulted with elders on how to educate the children. However, I could not find a solution to the problem. Consequently, that period was a very painful time for all of staff children and ourselves alike.
Then a big problem occurred: two children were caught shoplifting toys with their school friends. Of course, they did it on impulse, being lured into it by other students. I discussed the problem with their parents, and then one boyís parents said to their son, "You made a big problem, because we couldnít bring you up properly. We cannot become an ideal blessed family. We have decided to make a three-day fast, and you can also do a meal fast if you think you are wrong." He felt deep love from his parents in their deep and strong determination. He also did a three-day fast, and then he changed a lot. Now, he is one of the leaders of the Second Generation in Japan.
This occurrence taught me a big and valuable lesson. I realized who has responsibility for the Second Generation children. Obviously parents should be responsible to educate and raise up their children. However, parents tend to avoid their responsibility when their children have problems or some evil character. For example, sometimes parents discuss their childrenís problems, and then argue with each other over whom their children resemble, their father or mother.
When children have some evil character and have a problem, there are a few reasons. The first is usually some kind of problem inherited from the parents. The second is an ancestral problem from spirit world. The third is their own personal problem. The fourth is a problem of the environment. If parents take full responsibility for their children, they can protect them. However, if they avoid responsibility for their children and try to blame other reasons for their problems, they cannot bring up their children well.
After one year, I learned a very important point about education of the Second Generation. Then I endeavored to love them with parental love. They also learned my character, thinking and love. Then we had very good relationships from that time on.
Let us reconfirm who has responsibility for the Second Generation. Of course, it is the parents. The main point is to be responsible to raise them up as true children. However, it is important how parents think when their children have problems. Even though there are other reasons for the problems, if the parents accept them as their own problems and cope with them, the children can change their thinking.
To take responsibility for the Second Generation means to love them, pray for them and bring them up and educate them with parental love. The goal of education for the Second Generation is to build a true family. However, parents should at least bring up their children better than their own parents did. When we, as parents, truly take responsibility for the Second Generation, they will grow up to be true children.
Mr. Nobuhiro Igarashi is the Japanese "Eve" National Messiah to Denmark. Reprinted from The European.
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