40 Years in America
Utmost Sincerity Moves Heaven
Dr. Jeun Ho Seuk
Could this seemingly fragile, mild-mannered, doctor really be the person chosen by Father to lead CARP? Could a former administrator at the Seminary really fill the shoes of the legendary Tiger Park? Those who never had the opportunity to get to know Dr. Joon Ho Seuk may still be underestimating him, as I did in 1983. But those who have had the opportunity to work closely with him could begin to understand the trials and the challenges that had forged deep within him a powerful determination to overcome adversity and to bring victory for Heaven.
When Dr. Seuk became the national director in January 1983, CARP was in need of direction. The dynamic and charismatic Tiger Park had passed away in April 1982 and Reverend Yong Suk Choi had not had time to make his presence felt as CARP National Director before he was reassigned in December. Dr. Seuk was therefore the third director in nine months. In what we later learned was a typical approach, he immediately leapt into action. Dr. Seuk was assigned to his new position on January 2 and on February 1, he began a national campaign. The Unificationism and Martial Arts tour started in Boston despite the fervent efforts of CARP leaders to point out that it would make much more sense to start in California and move East as the weather improved. This was when I first began developing my theory that Dr. Seuk actually relishes difficulty.
Over the years, I came to believe that few things make him happier than when somebody tells him that what he is about to do is impossible and crazy. That way, once the success is achieved, it makes a great story! Of course it snowed in Boston in February 1983 and of course it made things very difficult, but the event was a significant success and that became one of Dr. Seuk’s favorite stories. And he always mentions that there were those who told him that it was a bad idea. I was not surprised when I later learned that as a young man, he had volunteered to fight in the Vietnam War.
One thing that every CARP member has is great stories that usually came out of difficult, challenging situations. Dr. Seuk often speaks about gosaeng, a Korean word meaning a willingness to go through any kind of difficulty and hardships for the sake of God and humanity. He is a big believer in the need to confront hardships in order to grow and develop and he was very direct in telling CARP members what to expect. At the end of his first year as leader, he gave this warning, "The CARP life is not an easy one. Beginning next year I will push you even harder. This year has been nothing compared to next year. In 1984 there may be a lot of wild directions coming at you. If you are not ready, you had better leave now!"
It was hard to believe that 1984 would be busier than 1983. The Unificationism and Martial Arts Tour continued on campuses across the country all through the summer and CARP’s campus activities in general were increasing. Then, on August 31, Korean Air Lines flight 007 was shot down by Soviet aircraft. Within the next 26 days, beginning on September 1, CARP initiated and participated in 49 rallies all across the nation. The rallies made national headlines. Young Spartacus, the newspaper of the Spartacus Youth League, one of the more rabid communist campus groups, wrote the following assessment in October, "The Moonies – those flower-peddling zombies belonging to the purportedly religious cult of Sun Myung Moon, have become well-organized and aggressive shock troops for America’s anti-Soviet war drive.
Seizing on the downing of KAL 007, the Moonies’ Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP) organized instant, anti-communist, war mongering demonstrations on campuses throughout the country from Columbus to Madison to Berkeley." Of course, everyone in CARP read this as a ringing endorsement.
Being in CARP in the 80s proved to be just as challenging as promised. CARP MFT became very disciplined under Mr. Itetsu Aoki because Dr. Seuk had determined that CARP would be self-sufficient. Father had advised him to send 70 members to national MFT but he decided that instead, CARP MFT would be improved and that CARP would be self-sufficient. CARP’s witnessing campaigns also became very focused and very successful and CARP was able to provide manpower for other missions.
Father clearly viewed CARP as an important training ground for church leaders, and UTS graduates were frequently sent to CARP to be trained. One of them, David Tebo, testified that, "CARP after three years in the Seminary is like ice water after a sauna." CARP was very, very busy and we naturally learned a lot through the variety and sheer number of activities that we undertook. Also, with so many young members in CARP, older members were forced to be parental and to care for others.
But much of the training also came through personal interaction with Dr. Seuk. He spoke frequently of the qualities that he admired in True Parents and I was moved by the fact that he tried so hard to embody those qualities himself. He spoke of filial piety, total submission to God; humility and meekness; iron-willed determination; true love; and utmost sincerity of heart. In Dr. Seuk’s home, there is a large calligraphy written by Father that reads, "Utmost sincerity moves Heaven." I believe Dr. Seuk has made that his life’s motto as he often refers to it. As CARP director, he always tried to be an example of the qualities that he hoped we would recognize in True Parents.
In June 1984, Hyo Jin Moon became President of World CARP. His first event was the rally at the Berlin Wall in 1987. The Berlin CARP Convention was very dangerous. CARP faced a lot of opposition by communists; there were bomb threats and many negative newspaper articles. Despite the opposition Hyo Jin Nim not only wanted to attend the rally, he wanted to lead the march to the Wall.
Heavily armed German police and twenty vans escorted the CARP marchers and protected them on both sides, but still it was a very perilous situation. East German territory is six or seven meters from the Berlin Wall and West German police can do nothing in that area. So the communists tried to disrupt the rally with a counter-rally there. The CARP members had to confront them and push them away from blocking the wall.
The next day, the newspapers said that the Unification Church pushed the leftists into East German territory. "At the end," said Dr. Seuk, "Hyo Jin Nim went to the Wall and prayed so fervently that his face became thoroughly wet with tears. I did not pray; not because I did not want to but because I wanted to keep watch.
Therefore, I could see his face as he prayed and I could really feel his deep commitment. Father and Mother were so happy to hear of the victory at the wall. It was a major victory because for the first time, international students gathered together to demand the destruction of the Berlin Wall. It made a world impact. Father and Mother called us to go directly to Alaska from Germany. When we got to Alaska, Father came back early to hear our report."
Having lived a life of gosaeng, Dr. Seuk urged CARP members to do the same, making CARP a place to learn to overcome all difficulties. By the end of the 1980s, there were many hundreds of members who had experienced that training and who trusted in Dr. Seuk’s leadership. That was an important foundation for the success that would come when the Wall came down and a unique opportunity presented itself in the Soviet Union. What needed to be done was impossible and everybody knew it. CARP did it anyway.
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