Unification News for September 1998
My Experience on the Pure Love Alliance Tour
by Pavel Gavrichev-Moscow, Russia
The PLA Tour was a success. It lasted for almost 3 weeks - August 2 -19. During that time we toured almost all of Japan-we had rallies in 5 big cities: Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Hiroshima and Fukuoka. In Korea our schedule included 3 rallies: in Pusan, Taejong and Seoul and after that the 3-day workshop at the Chung Pyung Lake Training Center.
The Tour was lead by Jin Hun Nim. I really want to thank him and all the staff for making it possible.
In Japan we were about 300 people, including 200 from the World-PLA and 100 local Japanese members. Also in all the cities many members joined us just for the rally and march. For example, in Tokyo they were over 2000. We were traveling in buses (t7 of them) and we were staying almost every night in different Church centers in different cities. Everywhere we've been to the local Church members were very glad to meet us and did all their best to make our stay the best way possible. Actually sometimes it must have been very difficult to accommodate and feed 300 people but anyway, they were able to do it. We were all very much moved by their sincere heart.
Our typical schedule included a rally and a march in every city we went to. The whole program usually lasted about 3 hours. The rally was a combination of different pieces of entertainment, like traditional drum band, Pure Love rap group, hip-hop dance, Pure Love Choir and many more and speeches by both PLA representatives and local VIPs. Every time we had few people from either the local parliament or universities speaking which was pretty inspiring, even though we couldn't understand a word. Anyway we tried to make as much noise as possible when we felt like the Japanese speaker wanted a response from the audience.
In Japan the emceeing was bilingual, basically in English with great Japanese translation, in Korea it was more "nationalized"-the major part was in Korean with a partial, but very good English translation. Together with the Japanese or Korean speakers we had Robert Kittel and some of the Western PLA students speaking at each of the rallies. All of those speeches were also very moving, and what made them even better - we could understand the content. Actually each tour participant had a chance to speak during the rally. We had a special Pure Love speech contest, where the representatives of all the 7 buses, chosen earlier, presented a short, 3-minutes speech. The winners got a cash prize from Jin Hun Nim and a possibility to speak at the rally, which has actually happened later on.
Anyway, the rally lasted usually for about 1,5 hours with all the audience reciting the Pure Love Pledge in the end. After that we quickly lined up and started the march. We had many banners and pickets (I'm not sure how they are called in English) that had something either in Japanese (Korean) or English on them. Usually it was something like "Love Alive", "Pure Love" or "Absolute Sex". So we marched through the streets of the cities holding up these banners and screaming out different chants, that we've already learned by heart during a few hours of practice. The chants were also in different languages. But they were limited in number, that's why we were repeating the same ones for more than 100 times during each rally. Anyway, it was a lot of fun.
Actually, Japanese and Korean people were responding very differently to our activities. Most Japanese pretended that they didn't see us as they were walking by our rally or march. On the other hand, many Koreans showed interest in what we were doing. They were coming up to us asking what this was all about, and many of them were supporting the things we were promoting. Many times our brothers tried to wake the Japanese up -they ran into big department stores along our way and screamed the chants there. I think that it was pretty unusual for people and they will remember it for a long time. Of course not all the Japanese people were indifferent to us, many of them were really showing their support by clapping and chanting together with us. That was inspiring.
Our program included also some sightseeing (actually there was a lot of it). In Japan we visited a few places in Kyoto and Osaka, climbed Mt. Fuji and hiked in a very beautiful place in the mountains near Hiroshima. Also we visited the Peace museum in Hiroshima. The major part of the sightseeing was actually watching through the bus window, since we spent a real long time traveling by bus. Anyway all the sightseeing was very good, it truly gave us power to do more during the rallies.
In Korea, on our way to Seoul, we visited the Sun Moon University for some short time. Then we all had a chance to see the True Parents home at HanNamDong. At that time Hoon Sook Him spoke to us there. She had been asked by True Mother to address us on behalf of True Parents. It was a great blessing for us that she came and spoke. We all didn't know that this would happen. We were just invited into the big room in the basement of the building, and then suddenly Hoon Sook Nim came and gave a short speech.
When we were in Pusan, during our first day in Korea, we held a special ceremony with both World PLA and K-PLA participating. They called it Brotherhood-Sisterhood. It means that each of the World- PLA participant got "matched" with a Korean brother or sister. Many brothers and sisters later testified that it was a real great experience for them, like they have really found a new brother or sister. I felt like that, too.
The part of our program together with K-PLA finished on Sunday, August 16, at Im Jin Gak, a place on the 38th parallel, N-S Korean border. There we had a "unification" ceremony led by Sun Am Moon with all of us praying, singing Tongil and cheering Mansei. It was a very moving experience, and many of us really felt the heart of Korean people whose families got separated during the WW2 and their desire for reunification.
After that we had the best, in my opinion, time during all the Tour- 3 days workshop at Chung Pyung. For many of us it was the first time being there, that's why everything was surprising and sometimes shocking-how real is everything what is going on there. The workshop was great, just if I start to describe all that was there, it will take too much time and disk space. I will just say that it was a great experience, at least for me and I want to go there again for a longer time.
The tour was great, it gave a lot to all of the participants, this I can testify from my own experience. We all were able to realize once again what purity means for ourselves and how we can witness about it to other people. I believe for some it was a life changing experience, during which they've decided to lead a pure life, not being sure about that before the tour. I think that PLA has a big future, since it can make a real big impact on the society by it's activities and also change lives of the people taking part in them.
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