Unification News for December 1998
Eve, Abel and Cain National Messiah 40 Day Workshop in the Pantanal at Fuerte Olimpo in Paraguay
by Jorg HellerNYC
Officially the Workshop was to start on October 25th, however, later on the beginning date was changed to the day we arrived at Jardim. A group of brothers including myself happened to arrive at Jardim on the 24th and thus for us the Workshop began on that date. A large group of Japanese National Messiahs, about 65 of them, came quite late, thus for them the Workshop will conclude just before the end of the year.
As the Abel National Messiah for the Czech Republic I have really struggled with the financial responsibilities that come with that mission. In order to save some money to be able to move to my mission country, I have purposely "bowed out" on other occasions when Father has asked National Messiahs to attend certain events. This may not have been the wisest thing to do, however, if I ever wanted to go to my nation, I could not see another way of doing it.
However, when Father asked the NMs to attend this Workshop, I felt deeply my heart that I absolutely had to attend. Working at USA HQ, I got Dr. Hendricks go ahead to attend this Workshop. Next I needed to get permission from Rev. Joong Hyun Pak who was attending the Workshop in Alaska. He came back just in time to also give me the go ahead.
I had heard horror stories about the poor living situations that we might have to encounter. So I prepared as well as I could. I bought mosquito nets and spray, after itch ointment, diarrhea medicine, water purification tablets, German army pants, French army desert boots and other small gadgets that were supposed to keep me alive for 40 days. I even flwobeed (cut) my hair to about an inch length. I was ready to go and take on all of South America.
It was about a 9 hour flight from New Yorks JFK to Sao Paulo. From there I switched airplanes and went on to Campo Grande. This was another 11/2 hour flight. I was pretty exited and looked forward to the experience of going fishing in the South American wilderness.. In Campo Grande I took a cab to the Bus Depot (Real $ 9.00, the Brazilian dollar is called Real $, mainly because the money they had before had been just about worthless and "not so real." Value about Real $ 1.20 for US $1.00).
The 11 am bus was already sold out, so I had to wait for the 3 pm bus to take me to Jardim. Cost of the trip, Real $15.50. I was not so happy to "lose" all this time. I wanted to connect with the Jardim crowd ASAP. I was pumped. However, what could I do? Nothing. So I had to switch gears. I thought it would be a good idea to find out how to handle the "Hobby Industry." I stored my luggage and went sight seeing.
Campo Grande is a fairly large town. I am not so sure how many people lived there, but by my estimation it would be close to two million. People were very friendly. Not far from the Bus Depot was a market where everybody and their brother sold something from little carts or tables. shoes, clothing, mechanical tools, electronic equi pment, CDs and more toys than you could shake a stick at. This market stretched out for almost a mile. At the center of the city there were shops everywhere. Sidewalk cafés where your bottle of coke was served in a bottle shaped cooler. After filling your glass, you could just pop the bottle right back in the cooler. It was a good way to keep your drink cool.
When I returned to the Bus Depot, I ran into some brothers who had just arrived from Sap Paulo via bus. They had been on the bus for 16 hours and it had been somewhat tiring. The bus ride cost about Real $50.00, which is much cheaper than flying of course. Finally the time came to get on the bus. Here we met up with some Canadians who were headed in the same direction. It would take us another 4 hours to arrive at our destination.
The bus was not air-conditioned, the roads were very rough and the heat was almost too much for us cold blooded Northerners. We stopped in 4 or 5 small city to pick up or drop off some passengers. An army of "fund-raisers" would attack us with ice-cold drinks, bread and souvenirs at every stop.
One stop before Jardim all of us got off the bus. Here we were to call Jardim for someone to pick us up. No one knew exactly what to do. I tried to ask one of the local ladies, but of course she did not speak any English. Sign language had to suffice. All of the sudden this lady became very excited and she pointed to my Blessing Ring. She grabbed my hand and said with a bright shining face, pointing to my ring "Me too, Me too." She bowed several times while she was strongly shaking my hand. Apparently she had been pre-blessed and was very happy about it. She called for us and after about 30 minutes our pick-up came. By now it was about 9 pm and it was quite dark.
Soon we arrived at the New Hope East Garden Estate. In the office we were assigned rooms in two different buildings. The buildings were just beautiful. The craftsmanship seen here was of the highest order. The rooms were quite comfortable, with 2 Beds, an air conditioner and a shower that could produce warm and hot water.
At 3 am we boarded a bus that took us to the Paraguay River where we arrived at around 7 am. Three "Go Boats" awaited us to take us up the river, a fourth boat had broken down, so we had to "squeeze in." A boat was usually meant for 10 or 12 people, but now twice as many people had to squeeze in. It was quite an interesting experience.
From the Brazilian side of the river, we went across to the Paraguayan side, a trip of about 100 yards. Here we stopped at the "immigration" building. A peace of architecture that looked very much like a barn or a stable. Soon we were cleared to go, and off we went up the river to Fort Olimpo. Since there were so many of us on each boat, we had to occupy every square inch. I went right up front. We were moving at quite some speed. It had been raining lightly for the last hour and if was good to feel the breeze of fresh air and the rain in my face. Since it was so warm, the rain did not feel uncomfortable at all.
The countryside to the left (Paraguay) and right (Brazil) of the river was alike, a bushy terrain studded with palm trees. Nothing too exciting, but it was new and thus somewhat interesting. We saw Fathers boat about half an hour before we arrived at our destination, well, that was pretty exciting. It took us all of three and a half-hours to arrive at Fort Olimpo. Of course, at that time neither I nor anyone else had a clear idea of where we were going. Most of us thought that we would end up somewhere in the bushes in a tent far away from even the remotest pieces of civilization.
I was the first one off the boat and when I asked where we were going form here, I was told that "this was it," we were not going anywhere. We had arrived at our destination. Well, to most of us this was surprising news. Naturally we were not really unhappy about this, because now we got to stay in a solid building in the middle of a fair sized town of about 5000 People. This put a whole new slant on our 40-day indemnity condition.
We had heard about the difficulties of the Korean National Messiahs during their 40-day fishing course. They had suffered much with the mosquitoes and the bad water. In their group diarrhea was an every day occurrence and many of them got very sick. Later on it was explained to me that the Korean NM lived in very primitive circumstances in order to construct and prepare the building for us so that we would have it somewhat easier. The water situation was also resolved. Arrangements were made with the major of the town to get water from a well. Thus our group had hardly any problems with diarrhea. We owe a lot of thanks to the Korean NM for preparing the way for us.
Our luggage did not make it up the river, since there was not enough space on the boats. It would arrive later on that day. Father and Mother, were fishing on the Paraguay River, each in their own boat. So, since there was not much to do at this time I borrowed a bicycle from one of the staff members and took a tour through the town.
It was somewhat of a culture shock for me to see how people lived here. Most of the buildings were made from raw palm tree logs. The workmanship was not of the best quality. The spaces between the logs did not seem to bother the inhabitants of those "log cabins." There were windows, but no windowpanes. There was an opening to access the cabin, but in most cases there were no doors. The palm tree logs are of a dirty dark gray color, in the whole town and I do not remember seeing any one of those cabins painted.
It was interesting to see that 90% of the cabins that had electricity also had a TV satellite dish about 6 feet in diameter. One day, on the way back from fishing, I watched the efforts of mother and child to adjust their satellite dish in order to get the reception they wanted. Mother inside screaming direction to the child outside. I could not tell whether it was a girl or boy but the child was not more than 5 years old. The child desperately tried to please the mother by moving the dish into the proper position. All the while the house pets, the dogs, piglets and chicken freely moved in and out of the cabin. Of course the conversation was in Guaranese, which is about the same as Spanish, so I did not understand very much. Finally the dish was in the proper position and peace was once again established.
Because it was so warm, everything was out in the open. The main streets were paved with hardened sand/gravel and clay mix. The side streets are just the regular clay, asphalt seemed to be unknown in this part of the country. When it rains, the side streets are impossible to travel on. Everything gets flooded quite badly and to move around after a heavy rainstorm was not easy. Regular sand as we know it here in North America was not to be found anywhere. The soil was a very dark gray loam or clay, which became very hard when it was dry and super soft and sticky when it was wet.
Domestic animals had the freedom to roam wherever they wanted. No one kept them in check, the chicken, dogs, pigs, sheep, goats, donkeys, cows and horses were always to be seen. In our yard, on the streets, in every area imaginable. I thought it was sort of fun having them around, and to me they never became a nuisance.
I developed a friendship with a couple of donkeys, which was kind of nice. I wanted to do the same with a particular horse, but it would not allow me to get too close to it. In general all the animals were quite shy and would not let you get close enough to touch them.
Life for the local people seemed very relaxed. I could not figure our how they made a living. Some families just survive by what they grow in their gardens and what they can fish in the river. Those families are free to fish all year round, while the more "well off" families are not allowed to fish during the off season.
The river is the center of life in this town. The locals come here to bathe, wash their laundry and get their water supply for their homes. Those who live nearby carry the water by the pail full into house. Others come with a big barrel on top of a mule drawn cart to get their supply. I could now much easier understand why major civilization always developed around a river.
We ourselves had a pump floating out on the river, about 40 feet from the shore. This pump would fill the water tanks located on the top of a type of scaffold rising above the roof of our building. From here the water would by gravity flow into our showers, toilets and washbasins.
As long as we had electricity, we had water. If the electricity failed, some of us went the way of the locals to wash up and do our laundry directly in the river. Electricity would usually fail during a major thunderstorm. We had quit a few of those and thus we were without electricity quite a few times.
There was initially some apprehension about going into the river because of the piranhas. We have been educated, mainly through movies that these ferocious fish eat anything that crosses their path and has some meat on their bones. So initially I myself was quite careful not to put too much of myself into the water. There even was a joke going around about piranhas. "How do you catch 5 piranhas at the same time? ."Stick your hand in the water!" However, soon we realized that the whole piranha phobia had been blown totally out of proportions.
All the children of the town could be found in the evening swimming in the river. They seemed to be having a grand old time. It did not take me and some of the others long to shake the fear of swimming with the piranhas. Rev. Zin Moon Kim went swimming for the first time in the river about a week or so before the workshop ended. This certainly broke a barrier for the Japanese NM and many of them took the risk to also brave the river from that time on. There were some, however, who never made it into the river, but maybe the reason for that had nothing to do with piranhas.
Soon after I arrived back from my bicycle excursion around town, True Parents arrived back from fishing. First Mother, and after a little while, Father. Everyone would come to the river to greet Father and Mother, applauding and cheering as their boat came in. This would become a regular occurrence and the "main event" for us to greet True Parents when they returned from fishing every evening.
Mother usually would bring her boat in earlier then Father. It would still be daylight and on a couple of occasions we were able to take pictures with her in a very close setting. One evening Mother was especially happy, because she caught five big and beautiful Bacus. "I fulfilled my mission today, she said proudly with a big smile on her face. We all were very happy for Mother and it felt like we were just one big family at that time.
Father stayed out longer. His boat would not pull in until after dark. When Father got off the boat he generally was very serious but he never forgot to smile when we greeted him. Father quickly got into the car and went home. We dearly missed that "close in and warm" type of feeling we had at "the homecoming" reception of True Parents after they left.
All we could do that day was to prepare our fishing gear for the next day. Rev. Chang from Canada, a graduate of the Koran NM Workshop briefed us, gave us some tips and showed us the four types of fish we were supposed to catch: Boga, Suruby, Bacu and Dorado.
The Boga had to be 38 centimeters long, the Suruby 100cm, the Bacu 40cm and the Dorado 55cm. Anyone of these fish had to be thrown back into the river it they did not measure up, however, they could be counted towards the 160 fish total.
In the evening at 9:00 pm we had Hoon Dok Hae with True Parents. Father asked Mother to pray to officially open the "40 Day Special National Messiah Workshop in the Pantanel."
After Mothers prayer one Korean sister, Won Joo McDevitt, read from a book that was published on the first of October of this year called "Life of the Mind and Soul" Love Stories by True Father. The book was read in Korean and of course most of us could not understand what was being read. True Parents knew this so Mother suggested to us that we would have to "tune in spiritually" to understand what is going on. We retired for the day at around 10:30 pm. Tomorrow, Monday would be the big day, our first day of fishing.
Wake up call was at 4:30 am. Breakfast at 5. At 5:30 am we got ready to go out. Some local people provided the bait. Each person got 10 fish to use as bait. By 6 am we were on our way to our fishing grounds. It had been explained to us that for the first week we should get used to the heat and the fishing gear and learn how to fish from the riverbank of the Paraguay River. Then, after a week we would be able to use the boats and go out on the river. There were 41 of us and we had plenty of small boats to go around to have space everyone.
Four teams were made and each team went of by foot to their respective "fishing grounds." A Japanese Team Leader was assigned to each team. Each brother was armed with his fishing rod, tackle box, big rubber boots, a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen. It was somewhat awkward at first, dealing with all this equi pment and one had to watch out not to get whacked by an errand fishing rod.
For lunch we carried a 1 or 1 1/2 liter water bottle and three rice balls with an apple or an orange. Before I left, my wife and kids made it very clear to me that they expected for me to lose my potbelly while I was in South America. If this lunch was all I would eat for the next 40 days, this would definitely do the trick for me. It should not be hard to shed a few pounds.
But it would even get better, due to the salt content in the kimchee and those rice balls, my ankles began to swell up and I had to cut out the kimchee at dinner and the rice balls at lunch. I did not mind to do that and just live on two meals a day. I would definitely slim down by only eating fruit at lunch. After about three days my ankles turned back to normal.
Some of us had been fishing before, myself included, but still it took a couple of hours to get back into a proper casting spirit. At first, everyone kept a save distance from each other, so as not to be caught by a hook from an apprentice heavenly fisherman. After a couple of days we had all become experts and we could cast our lines in quite a professional manner.
The early morning hours were very beautiful and quite cool. As the sun rose toward its zenith, however, it got hotter and hotter. It was not easy at first to get used to the heat. After 8am you were sweating all the time, even if you were just sitting still. It was impossible to take off your shirt, because the sun would burn you to shreds. A wide brim hat, a good pair of sunglasses, and sun block lotion was an absolute must for everyone. The sun was so bright and you would get the light not only from up above but also from down below, reflecting from the water surface. This was very intense on the face, especially the nose. It was wise to cover up as much of your body as possible. The hands suffered the most, especially the area between the thumb and the pointer.
From the beginning I had the urge to jump into the water and cool down, but on that first day I saw a crocodile lazily floating down the river. On top of that, the only fish we were catching were piranhas. So it just did not seem a very good idea to go swimming at that time.
Our team did not catch any "real" fish that day. The only real fish in the river were the fish that Father wanted us to catch, the bacu, boga, dorado and the suruby. Other teams had similar results.
At 6 pm we packed up our gear and walked back to the property. Here we could prepare for the next day and get ready for dinner at 7:30 pm. Dinner was the big meal of the day. The food was good; Servings consisted of rice, kimchee, vegetables, beef, fish or chicken, soup and fruit. The local people supplied everything. We just wondered who was buying the cows. The beef was not so tender and it took quite some effort to chew it into a pulp safe enough to swallow.
After dinner we would just get ready for a 9 pm Hoon Dok Hae meeting with True Parents. This meeting took place in a small hall next to our sleeping quarters, about 18 feet wide and 55 feet long. Father and Mother would sit on a love seat, a small couch just big enough for the two of them. It was a very intimate setting and I felt very close to True Parents. True Father and True Mother were much more relaxed and informal during our time together. Father told us one evening that the time to have a close personal relationship with true Parents has come.
We all should have a close relationship with True Parents. Many times in the past I have thought about what it would take to have such a relationship with Father and Mother. On what foundation can such a relationship really happen? Since, as regular western members we do not have the opportunity to physically be close to them, it could only be done through a lot of prayer and by closely following Fathers directions and fulfill them. Walking the path Father has walked and feeling the things Father has felt when he walked the course would make Father a more real and personal Father. Now I have tried to do that to the best of my ability and I feel that sometimes I have succeeded and at other times I have not.
Many times in the past I imagined in my mind to meet Father and Mother in person, just the three of us. What would it be like? What would we be talking about? What could I say to True Parents? Could I carry on a conversation that would be an inspiration to True Parents? I did not feel confident about that. Certainly I have not done anything great to talk about. I found myself in a somewhat insecure, uncomfortable, unworthy and even fearful mood during these mental encounters.
This flashed through my mind when Father told us that this is the time to have a personal relationship with True Parents. Now here we were, about 60 of us, quite close physically to True Parents, which had a profound impact on everyone. In this situation it was much easier for me to feel close to True Parents. However, the barrier caused by my sinful nature and lack of accomplishment was still there and thus my insecurities. But for some reason my anxiety was less troubling then the ones I had in the past when I had my mental "encounters" with True Parents.
That evening ended with some entertainment. Mother seemed to have fun choosing some brothers to perform and the brothers certainly enjoyed entertaining True Parents and us. The atmosphere was very relaxed and even joyful. It was a good way to end the day.
On our first fishing day, Monday, the 26th of October Father had invited four Japanese brothers to join him at breakfast. He spoke to the brothers very seriously for about two hours. When the breakfast meeting with Father was finished, he assigned these four Japanese brothers to be the team leaders and told them to share the content of the speech with the team. The former team leaders would become their assistants. When the Japanese brother explained this to us I felt that we were in for a very serious experience. This speech definitely set the tone for me for the rest of the workshop.
Fathers Words, Fort Olimpo, Breakfast Meeting with four Japanese National Messiahs, 6 am - October 26th 1998
Father was quite angry that only so few National Messiahs came (at that time there were 41 one of us). He could not imagine that the travel expense and the workshop fee would keep anyone from coming here. Father is hitting the table angrily as he speaks "I brought Heavenly Father and the National Messiahs here. But only so very few came. The workshop loses its meaning with such few NM. Maybe we should cancel it.
I have been teaching absolute faith, love and obedience. To what effect? Especially the Japanese should come. We have to save the world. Japan will be punished if they dont unite with Father and follow.
Paraguay is the center of South America. The American government and even the Communists have an office in Ascention. Paraguay and Uruguay are very important in Gods Providence here in South America. Father addressed the Brazilian Congress and spoke out for religious freedom. He explained to them that there should be unity between the Catholics and the Protestants and South America and North America.
Two third of the leadership will accept Father, we have to start taking control of the political situation here. Right now only 400 million people live in South America. However, there is enough space her to support 8 billion people. But the countries are not united and there is much corruption. If Paraguay and Brazil can unite, the Pantanal centered on Jardim can become the center of the world. In the rainy season, land twice the size of Japan will all be submerged under the water. Clean water is most important in the future. We will provide water from the Pantanal to the whole world. If we control the water, we can control the world.
Ever since WW II and more so right now, pollution is destroying the world. If we continue at the same pace, within 300 years, the world will be finished, totally polluted. The UN actually should protect the natural resources of the world, but they are not doing it. Thus we must do it. We must hold workshops to research nature and figure out how to protect it. If we can do it, everyone will respect us. We must protect True Parents most of all.
One million Japanese are living in Brazil. That is a pretty strong foundation and we should work with them. Japan is beginning to accept True Parents. Two thirds of the Japanese population has to leave Japan (including non members is my understanding). 120 Japanese Blessed Families have to go to each of the 185 nations. They worship too many false gods including a female god. Japan has faced an incredible crisis in 1988 and it has been engulfed in total darkness. 12 Korean Blessed Families each have to also go to 185 nations. This is the last Providence. The entire Japanese property must be given to the world. Eventually 40 million people should migrate to the 185 nations in the future.
Communism is gone now as a governmental system, but it is still expanding on the individual and family levels. Catholics, Protestants and the Jewish people have all welcomed Father. Father can collect information about Japan faster than the CIA can. He could control Japan within two weeks if he wanted. The Japanese want to be like Koreans because the Spirit World is influencing them. The National Messiahs are the eternal King of their nation. But still, Japan is a satanic nation. We need to control the North and the South Pole.
No one believes that we can be victorious in the 360 million Blessing. 160 of your relatives should become missionaries. Germany, USA and Japan must unite in doing that. The Japanese WFWPU should witness to the ambassadors of the USA and Japan. The Japanese missionaries absolutely have to stay in their mission country. They have to die for their mission. They should not return home whenever they want. Japanese currency will only be paper soon, without value. Thus spend the money now. Even if Japan disappears, its all right as long it has helped others. We must swallow and digest everything. The June 13th Blessing was a big turning point. Now we must love our enemies. Why do NM complain about the money to come here. Why do the NM not come here, this determines their eternal life. I am very lonely, no one understands me.
There is a Mafia here even in South America, they want to collect some money from the WFWP. Confucius is of Korean descent. Japan is the only oceanic island nation still in Gods Providence. In Japan you are allowed to marry your cousin, but you should not do it. If you do, you shall perish.
Fish and alligators can swallow good and bad. That is the spirit of the Pantanal. At the June 13th 1998 Blessing good and bad, head and tail united. Saints and Assassinators all were saved together. There are no more enemies.
The spirit of the Pantanal is that of the last Settlement. We must go over all satanic positions. The Pantanal has the blessing of land and water. Now it must unite with True Parents. Father made so many indemnity conditions and thus he could open the 12 gates of Heaven and liberate hell. The suffering course Father went through can not be compared with the suffering of Adam. Fathers life has been absolutely miserable. The first four Providential Nations did not accept Father and thus they are receiving punishment Constantly Father had to make indemnity conditions to save the world.
Kim Il Sung believed in Father as the savior. He shook hands with Father and thus the birthright of the elder brother was restored to the heavenly side. Then True Parents restored the parental right and the King position. Based on Fathers ability to set up the elder son nation. The 6000 year history was restored and now we can go to the Kingdom of Heaven. Kim Jung Il also respects True Parents because of the influence Father has in the east.
We must now create unity between the Tribal Messiahs and the National Messiahs. Some Japanese complain, but they do not understand the value. They can become huge trees in front of Adam. Eve can not insist of her position. We have to unite and be sincere before True Parents.
Eve has to offer three generations. Japanese members have to sell their homes and land and go to the world. Taiwan, the Philippines and Canada are to support Japan. These 40 days are important for you to unite with True Parents. Please make a strong effort to unite with True Parents and True Children. [end]
(These notes are very spotty and some of Fathers words have been lost do to lack of understanding and translation.)
The brother also told us that True Parents will continue having breakfast meetings with four different Japanese brothers every day. For dinner, True Parents will invite four western members. That was quite exciting, having dinner with True Parents in a very personal way.
After everything was said and done, we got ready to go out fishing. As we walked to our fishing area, I reflected on Fathers words. The spirit behind them was so serious and I was somewhat taken aback. I could feel a sense of desperation and urgency that I have never felt before. I can not describe this feeling with words. Does Father feel this way as well? Probably so and much more. Heavenly Father needs a sovereign nation, a nation He can govern centered on True Parents and establish the pattern and Heavenly Traditions that would be the foundation for the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth. If we have that one True Nation, then very soon two more True Nations could arise. This would be the foundation for the rest of the world to come under Gods dominion.
This was all to take place centered on a united Korea. The New Hope East Garden should have been established at Chung Pyung Lake, not at Jardim. The one True Nation should have been one united Korea. From there the Kingdom should have spread throughout the world. Only because America, Japan and Korea rejected their heavenly mandate and failed to accept True Parents does Father now have to go to plan "B." That is the South American Providence. Father is so amazing, so wise, he learned from Jesus mistake. Jesus did not have a backup plan and thus he eventually ended up on the cross. Already, in the early 1970s Father began to lay the foundation in South America for his secondary plan.
Father is building Gods True Nation in South America. No nation in the satanic world accepted Father direction to become a True Nation, thus, Father has to build his own True Nation. That is the reason why Father is buying so much land in Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Up to this point Father has bought 40,000 hectares. The long range goal is to buy 150,000 hectares (one hectare is 2.47 acres or 10 square kilometers). That is a lot of land, but still, I am sure that Father wants even more than that.
Our second day of fishing was not more successful than the first. However, one brother on our team who spoke Spanish quite well, convinced a local boot fisherman to take us in his boat to some of the better fishing grounds in the area the next day. I was looking forward to it. This would make fishing somewhat more interesting.
The following morning we had our standard breakfast of 2 slices of French bread, 2 slices of ham, 2 slices of cheese and one fried egg. The breakfast was my favorite meal. Many brothers enjoyed the unlimited supply of Brazilian coffee. I stuck to the barley tea that was also on the menu. I would mainly drink barley tea throughout the workshop. Drinking hot barley tea rather than the cold water. I did not want to take any chances to waste my time by being sick. And it worked, I never had any problems with diarrhea or any other ailment.
Hot barley tea with a bit of sugar became my favorite drink. Even on the hottest of days, that drink took care of my thirst. I did, however, develop a deep appreciation for ice cold soda. A small grocery store sold them for less than 50 cents one block away. The ice cold fizz hit the spot every time. There was no comparison with having a similar drink in New York City. It was really good, but it also was not so healthy. I tried to limit myself to just one soda every two days.
After breakfast we went to meet up with the local fisherman and his boat. We had to wait for him for a little while, but finally he showed up. All ten of us jumped into the small boat that was powered by a small diesel engine. There was just enough space for everyone. We went on a half an hour cruise up a small side arm of the river.
As the day went on it became unbearably hot, my hands were all swollen up because of their exposure to the sun. I had no energy, every move I made seemed to be in slow motion. I lost three or four hooks in the river and not even the piranhas were biting. It was a challenging time, but I did not want to give up. I fought myself through this sluggishness to the best of my ability. Even putting the bait on the hook seemed to be a task to difficult to face. I felt like putting down the fishing rod for a while and take a break. But thinking about Father and how hard he worked, I just could not do it. I felt it was important to continue fishing. However, I lost some of my focus during that stretch of time but I never gave up.
At lunch time I was pulled to go for a little walk along the riverbank. The underbrush was quite thick but I soon found a deer trail that I could easily follow. I really felt that Heavenly Father was urging me on to follow that trail and I wondered were it would be leading me. About 100 yards away from our fishing spot I came to a little clearing at the riverbank. "Go ahead, jump in," was the strong feeling I had. Was this what Heavenly Father had in mind when He urged me on to follow that trail? Probably so! I had felt so calm and unafraid of anything. The snakes, the crocodiles or any of the other wild and dangerous animals that probably hang out in this territory did not worry me at all. I was aware of their existence and I was cautious, but I was "cool." As I look back at this time, even more so than then, I realized that the Holy Spirit was with me and guiding me. It felt very good.
I took my shirt off, kept my sneakers and pants on and walked into the water. It was quite shallow. I laid flat on my back in the water and even though the water was quite warm it was really refreshing. I cooled down for about ten minutes. I felt like a new man after that. The rest of the team, I think, was a bit worried about me, especially the team leader. Everyone thought that I was somewhat crazy, but in reality I had had an encounter with our Heavenly Father, that I think we both enjoyed. The next day we went back to the same spot and another brother joined me in the experience. We had a good time.
Shortly after we returned to our home base, it was announced that True Mother was on her way in. We all rushed to the boat landing area (a pier is in the planning stages) where basically the boats are run ashore, and passengers are walked off the boat on a wide and strong plank. When True Mother stepped on shore, she had a big smile on her face and said "I fulfilled my mission today!" Her boat crew lifted 5 big Bacus off the boat, beautiful fish. True Mother was obviously very happy. She stayed around for some time to take many pictures with us.
Hoon Dok Hae in the evening was always a good experience. Being so close to Father and Mother was always an inspiration, even if we could not understand what was going on. True Parents were usually very relaxed. At one point Father took off his socks and encouraged everyone who wanted to, to do the same.
Today was the day three brothers and I were to meet True Parents in their private dining room over dinner. I was still somewhat apprehensive but all throughout the day I made an effort to clear my mind of all that had troubled me in the past and put it behind me. If there ever was a good day to catch a fish, this would be the day. At least if Father or Mother asked, then the answer could at least be "yes," I caught a fish today. So all my focus for the day went to catching that fish. The boat took us to our regular spot. After an hour and a half or so, a Canadian brother caught a Surubi, 52 cm long. It was too short, thus it had to get back into the water. However, it counted toward the goal of the 160 fish we were supposed to catch.
So there was hope for more fish to be in that river. Our team had never caught this kind of fish before. About half an hour later, a fish struck my line. It did not feel like a piranha or a catfish. And I was right, I pulled out a beautiful Surubi, 53 cm long. Also much too short, but anyway I was happy to have caught at least one "real" fish as we called the 4 types of fish Father wanted us to catch. I think another brother on the team caught a dorado that day as well. But that was it for the day. On our way back home in the boat my thoughts moved ahead and I tried to prepare myself for the dinner with True Parents.
I did not want to take negative, fearful or shameful feeling to the dinner table. I totally emptied my heart, so as not to bring a disturbing atmosphere to dinner. Rev. Zin Moon Kim had arrived earlier that day. At dinner time he told us that he had to cut one person. He did not give any reason for it. Eventually the time came to enter the Dining Room. We gave one full bow to True Parents and sat down. There were only seven chairs and we were eight people. Thus one more brother had to leave the room.
Rev. Zin Moon Kim and Rev. Eu who had been working a long time in South America and another Korean brother joined the dinner table. That left only two chairs for us. The Abel National Messiah to Ireland and myself ended up having dinner with True Parents. However, the dinner became some sort of a business meeting, Rev. Kim spoke for about ten minutes and then Rev. Eu took over. He spoke for about half an hour. In the meantime, the two of us quietly ate our dinner. We did not know what was going on and thus felt somewhat out of place.
But the setting was still very beautiful. We did not have any electricity on that day and thus we had a candle light dinner. I was sitting at the end of the table opposite from Father. Mother was sitting to Fathers left. She did not speak at all. Father seemed very tired but he made a big effort to pay attention to Rev. Kim and Rev. Eu. He looked at me a couple of times with a subtle smile on his face. All I could do is smile back. After about 40 minutes the dinner came to an end. I was somewhat disappointed. It would have been nice to be able to exchange even just a few words with Father. An opportunity like that may never present itself.
On Friday evening, October 30th, our 6th day of fishing, at Hoon Dok Hae Father has Rev. Zin Moon Kim show us some architectural drawings of buildings that will be build both in Jardim and Fort Olimpo. There were 26 types of buildings, beautifully designed, Shopping Malls, Stores, Family Living Quarters, Gymnasiums, Schools and a Condominium. The Condominium will be will be build to house four families from four nations who will be able to live together and raise each others children. This project is scheduled to be completed in 3 years.
We were told that Saturday, October 31, 1998 would be our last day of fishing. The fishing season ended on that day. There would be no fishing for the next three months. This was a great disappointment for all of us, but there was nothing we could do. We were just getting ourselves into the right "fishing zone" and we were looking forward to try our fishing skills from the boats. However, it was not to be.
We became Construction Workers from that point on. Rev. Kim told us that the central focus of the workshop was to review our life in the church, repent, and make a determination to live a life of absolute faith, absolute love, and absolute obedience. It would have probably be easier doing that while watching the tip of a fishing pole, rather than swinging a sledge hammer or a shovel.
Our schedule changed drastically from Sunday, November 1, 1998. From 7 am to 10 am we had a work assignment. From 10 am to 2 pm was siesta time. The temperature during that time could get up to 110º Fahrenheit. From 2 pm to 5 pm we had two study periods. The first one was usually a testimony, in the second period Rev. Zin Moon Kim would give us a lecture or some internal guidance. At 5 pm we would be on work assignment again until 7 pm. Free time til 9 pm. At 9 pm we had a Hoon Dok Hae session for one hour and at 10 pm it was testimony time again.
Even though I missed the fishing, I was quite happy with this schedule. Father had given directions that everyone should give their testimony. To be able to hear testimonies from all the workshop participants was so very precious. I learned so much during the testimony time. The National Messiahs from Japan were a very close bunch of brothers. Most of them joined at around the same time and knew each other quite well. There was a sort of camaraderie there that was unique. I felt that this would help to create stronger unity among the nations.
The work details we received were all centered on our property. By this time more Japanese National Messiahs had arrived. The second group never had a chance to go fishing. We had about eight teams of ten per team. Every morning and every afternoon we lined up "army style" to get our work assignment.
We dug holes, set poles, build fences, laid foundations, dug trenches, laid wires, moved rocks, broke down walls, pulled weeds, poured cement, sawed logs, fixed tools, laid water pipes, installed a water pump, drained ditches, fixed the plumbing, built a boat landing ramp, swept the yard, crushed rocks, painted walls, moved doors, laid floors, installed clothe lines, pulled boats out of the water, put boats into the water.
It was not easy to keep 80 National Messiahs occupied for that length of time. Eventually an old timers team was set up, NMs 59 years and up. Their main task was to burn the garbage and make sure no strange animals walked onto the grounds. When things got really desperate and there was not enough to do for everyone, some teams were sent out o clean up the garbage in the town.
Much of the work was quite demanding. The soil was a very hard clay and it took some effort to dig into it. We had to dig one big hole, 2.5 meters deep and about 3.5 meters square. In this hole we would pour the foundation for the new water tower. It was quite a challenging job, but I liked doing that kind of thing. The temperature was always hot and on some days it was even hotter. Swinging a pick ax or a shovel was hard work and within minutes my clothing was soaked with sweat.
This type of work was quite a contrast from what I was used to, working in the office at the Continental HQ in New York. Soon I had blisters on both of my hands. They were somewhat painful but I ignored the pain and continued digging. I wanted to give all that I had and not hold back even a little bit.
During the 30 days we did the construction work, I felt I was laying a foundation not only for my mission country, the Czech Republic, but also for the new nation. The first True Nation of Heaven and Earth which True Parents are building at this very moment.
If there was a tough job to do, I wanted to be the first doing it. There were many brothers to work but not enough space to work at times. A "replacement system" developed very naturally. Everyone on the team wanted to worked hard but not all could work at the same time, thus we had to take turns. Three or four brother would be working and the others would be watching. After ten minutes of hard work usually someone slowed down somewhat, usually a sign of fatigue. As soon as that happened he was asked to step aside and someone else would continue until they slowed down. We would take turns like that all day long. Sometimes, even though a brother slowed down, he would not give up his post and continue working. Sometimes we had to force a brother to surrender the shovel or pick ax in order to protect him and the brothers that worked beside him. Everybody wanted to do their best. Sometimes so many brothers were working on such a small area, swinging their picks, shovels and hoes, that it had me worried that someone might get hurt here. Two days later, True Parents flew in for a brief afternoon to give a special prayer of protection for us so that no accident of any kind would happen and no one would get hurt. True Parents knew everything that was going on here, so it seemed to me.
I felt that I was not just digging holes or putting up fences, I was building a new nation, Heavenly Fathers first True Nation on the Earth, so I had to do my best, I had to set a good example for all the people that would come after me to South America to build this True Nation. This was my attitude with every job I worked on during the construction time. By the way I saw other brothers investing themselves, they must have felt that as well. I did not care about my blisters, I did not need gloves, band aids or even anti-biotics. I was the pilgrim, a builder of the First True Nation of God and nothing could harm me. This sounds pretty crazy now but thats how I felt then, and I still feel that way today.
I could sense that I was at the center of the Providence was right here in South America. True Parents are doing something so huge here, it is mind boggling. They are building Gods first True Nation. Who is going to live on this land? People from all nations around the world should come and settle there. Especially the Japanese people, Father wants to bring all of them there. I am sure Father would like to take the North Koreans and have them settle there as well. People from every nation should make up Gods True Nation. Father wants to make a deal with the government of Brazil and Paraguay to have 20,000 members immigrate to those countries soon. He needs that number of people just to get things started.
Father has also allotted a strip of 50 km to every one of the 186 nations. It was not made clear how wide that strip would be. Those parcels of land have already been assigned through lottery in Ascencion on True Childrens Day on November 19th. A map is being prepared to clearly identify the land for each nation. The land is placed along three rivers, the Amazon, the Paraguay River and the Parana River. Rev. Moon, the National Messiah of Paraguay drove his 4 wheeler very hard in order to bring the results to Fort Olimpo before our workshop ended. He had to face bad weather and muddy roads. The trip from Ascencion usually takes 2 days, but because of the bad road conditions it took him 4 days. Many times he had to use the winch in front of the vehicle to pull it out of the mud. He made it just in time, arriving about 3 hours before we had to leave.
Most of Fathers activities are centered on and around the Paraguay River. So it was only natural that in my heart I desired to have my countrys land, the Czech Republic, located at that River. And that is just the way it worked out. Both the USA and the Czech Republic had their parcel of land assigned at the Paraguay River.
Finally, on Monday, November 30th, the time of our departure arrived. We boarded a large River Boat equipped with restaurant and a bar. We were experiencing an aspect of the hobby industry right here. We waved good by to those who stayed behind on shore until they were no longer recognizable. A group of about 70 Japanese NM would complete the workshop around the 29th of December. I was going to miss the place, at least for a while.
We arrived in Jardim late at night. The next morning we were on a bus again to visit Rio Perdido. It was such a beautiful river, we saw 5 of the 20 waterfalls that were located on our property. The countryside around it was just as beautiful. As far as the eye could see, the land belonged to us it was just amazing. The staff at the farm barbecued a lamb for us over an open fire. It was absolutely delicious.
The next day we went on another sightseeing tour. This time we visited the Salobra Hotel. Again, it was a very beautiful chunk of land that we owned here. The hotel with its main feature, the restaurant were very classy. The staff served us a beautiful buffet lunch there. About a mile from the hotel True Parents house was located on a hill, overseeing the whole territory. Here True Parents spent most of their time during the Blessing 97, in Washington DC. According to Mrs. Kim, the director of the place, Father made all the conditions to bring victory at RFK right here while fishing in the Salobra River near by. We had the opportunity to go out on boats and get a feeling for the river where Father fished. It was really beautiful, quite narrow with all the wildlife one can imagine. It was simply breath taking. I had never seen anything like it before. But soon it was time to return.
We arrived back at Jardim a couple of hours before dinner. As we stepped of the bus on December 2nd , the 40 day workshop was officially declared history. Many brothers had been planning their return trips for a couple of days. I could not be bothered with that, I wanted to focus on the completion of the workshop. Now that it was done, I found that Heaven had arranged everything for me.
My return flight was booked for the 6th of December, since we were told that the workshop would be completed by December 5th. Through a Japanese brother, I arranged to get a free ride for myself and another brother with a Japanese tour bus to the Campo Grande airport for the next day.
I could not fall asleep so easily that last night in Jardim. So I had some time to reflect on my experience. Father had told us on the first day of the workshop, that the blessings we would receive from this workshop would only become clear to us some day in the future. Well, I believed that, but on top of that I could count the blessings that I knew I had already received. I had become much healthier physically. The hard work, had strengthened me substantially and I lost at least 15 pounds. Drinking so much liquid, and sweating so much had cleaned my body out and I felt much better than before. Going swimming just about every day helped me a lot too. It was great exercise. I came to the realization that I should definitely exercise more when I get back to New York. I did not realize how week I had been at the beginning of the workshop.
Spiritually I felt the workshop at Fort Olimpo had a similar effect as the workshop in Chung Pyung. I was also cleaned spiritually. Some heavy weights had been lifted off my shoulders. I became a much "lighter person," I gained greater spiritual strength and confidence and I felt I have been given greater authority over the satanic world. This had absolutely been the most rewarding and exiting workshop I participated in and I will never forget this experience.
I had the chance to snoop around the True Family Workshop in Jardim for two evenings. All the buildings were so beautiful and maintained so well. Lectures were taking place for the Japanese, Korean and Western members all at the same time, but in different locations. Rev. and Mrs. Joong Hyun Pak, Continental Directors of North America were in the last week of their True Family workshop when I arrived there. The spirit was very calm and relaxed. About 2000 members were in attendance at that time.
The largest group of families came from Japan. It was nice to see so many children running around. Mothers would carry their babies around a few hundred feet away from the lecture hall while listening to the lecture via the radio. There was no pressure anywhere. By about 10 pm everything quieted down and soon everyone was sleeping.
The next day, the brother and I made the last flight as stand-byes to Sao Paulo. In Sao Paulo, again as stand-byes we got on the next plain to New York. Everything worked out so smoothly, Heaven had to be behind it. I only hope that the spirit world will help me and my family to make it possible to attend the True Family Workshop in Jardim, the New Hope Garden of Eden.
Download entire page and pages related to it in ZIP format
Table of Contents