Messiah - My Testimony to
by Bo Hi Pak
Chapter Ten - The "Missionary" at the Washington Embassy
Nine years had passed since I first traveled to the infantry school at Fort Benning not knowing a word of English. During my stay in Georgia I never imagined that I would see America again. But after that my life took a number of unexpected turns. Not only had I been sent back to Fort Benning for more training, but I had been pushed to devote my life to learning English, which eventually put me in the position to be introduced to the Unification Principle. I discovered the true meaning of life and became a member of the Unification Church.
Now I knew that the mysterious force that had been guiding and protecting me was God Himself. He had saved my life and led me this far, but now that He had finished preparing me, He was going to send me back to America - this time as a military attaché at the Republic of Korea Embassy in Washington, D.C. Who else but God could have brought a poor farmer to an embassy? At one time my highest ambition had been to raise pigs and sweet potatoes; and now I was going to be a diplomat!
This prestigious assignment came about not because I had any special abilities or accomplishments. In fact, it was the result of yet another miraculous development in my life.
The year was 1961, and I was still a major. In those days the Ministry of Defense chose only senior officers to send abroad as military attaches. Then the decision was made to establish the position of assistant military attaché for the embassy in Washington, D.C., and majors could apply.
The Korean army had many talented officers who had served as interpreters during the war. They were the military's best experts in the English language. I had learned a great deal of English, but I lacked the level of formal training of these other officers. Many of them had university degrees in English literature and considerable experience in practical usage. Any of them would gladly be assigned to Washington, D.C.
When the Ministry of Defense announced that it was accepting applications for the position of assistant military attaché, it received dozens of applications for the single position available, so the ministry decided to choose their candidate by giving an examination. I was sure I had no chance in this competition.
I reported all this to Reverend Moon. He told me. "If it is God who has led you this far, then you should put your faith in God and take the exam. Trust the will of God. You are a person who must go to America."
I made up my mind to take the exam. I went to the appointed place on the day of the exam and discovered that I was competing with over a hundred officers. I even saw some of my old English teachers from the language school. Needless to say, I was very intimidated. As I took my seat, I said a word of prayer, "May Your will be done."
We were tested on a number of areas, about eight, as I recall. It seemed to work to my advantage to be tested on many areas at once. On the entrance exam to the military academy I got no points on the English test but still managed to make the overall minimum grade by doing well on the other parts of the test. On this test, I might not do as well as others in English, but I could compensate for that with good scores in other areas. Still, the odds were more than a hundred to one that I would be chosen.
I put my faith in Reverend Moon's advice to "trust the will of God." I told myself, "If God needs me to go to America, then there will he a way for me to go there. If that is not the will of God, then it's best that I not be chosen."
The examination took all day. We were all completely exhausted by the time it was over. Everyone had done his best. Now we could only wait.
The day finally came for the results to be announced. I received a telephone call from the office of Gen. Sun Yob Back, the army chief of staff, and was ordered to report to him immediately. I had already met General Back on a number of occasions in the course of my work as an aide to the KMAG commander. He had even visited our humble home, together with General Matthews. Still, it was unusual for the army chief of staff to directly order a major to report to his office.
The general greeted me with a big smile. "Congratulations, Major Pak," he said. "I really have to hand it to you. Based on the examination, you've been selected to be the new deputy military attaché in Washington. I sent for you so that I could congratulate you and personally hand you your new orders."
While I said the proper things to the general, in my heart I was offering a prayer of gratitude. "Thank you. God. Because of your help, I am about to go to America. I will work according to Your will."
As the time drew near for me and my family to leave for America, Reverend Moon held a farewell banquet in my honor and presented me with a calligraphy that he wrote specially for the occasion. It was a writing of eight Chinese characters that means something like, "The phoenix has flown to its own territory, so it will do well and be victorious ten thousand times." Today, this writing is kept in our home as a precious family treasure.
I took the words of Reverend Moon's calligraphy to he his command for me. It was God's will that I carry out this command. I had simultaneous feelings of extreme gratitude and tremendous responsibility.
This calligraphy composed by Reverend Moon was presented to the author in .1961: "The phoenix has flown to its own territory, so it will do well and be victorious ten thousand times."
On the morning of March 1, 1961, I put on my dress uniform and got ready to head to Kimpo Airport with my wife. Before leaving, we went to Reverend and Mrs. Moon's home to bid them farewell. Mrs. Moon had just given birth to her first daughter and was recovering.
Here we received an unexpected honor. Reverend and Mrs. Moon, the True Parents of humankind, prayed and gave us the Blessing as the first of the "Thirty-six Couples." This meant that my wife and I were registered as direct family members of the True Parents. In terms of the Unification Principle, it meant that our original sin was completely cut away and our marriage was sanctified. The formal Thirty-six Couples Holy Blessing Ceremony was held a few months later on May 15. Since we were leaving for America. Reverend and Mrs. Moon made it possible for us to receive the Blessing before our departure. This was an incredible gift from God.
As the author waits for his flight in the departure lounge of Seoul's Kimpo Airport, he has a last chance to speak intimately with Reverend Moon about his pioneering work in the United States.
Reverend Moon, Hyo Won Eu, and many of our friends in the church came to the airport to see us off.
After we boarded the Pan Am Flight for America - the first time in an airplane for both of us - Reverend Moon and our friends went to the observation deck on the roof of the passenger terminal to watch our plane leave. I took out a piece of paper where I had written the word (Ideal God's will) and put it up against the window. I did this partly to let Reverend Moon know exactly where I was seated and also as a silent and final expression of my undying loyalty to him. I was told later that he and the others on the observation deck saw the word suddenly appear in one of the plane windows and that this was a very emotional moment for them. Reverend Moon kept waving in farewell and watching the plane until it disappeared in the distance.
Principal members of the early Unification Church came to Kimpo Airpcnt to see the Paks off to America. From left to right are the author Reverend Moon, Mrs. Pak, Won Pok Choi, Won Pil Kim, Kil Ja Sa, and church president Hyo Won Eu.
After the plane was in the air, I was as happy as I could be. I had received the highest honor by being seen off at the airport by the messiah and True Parent of all humanity. This was a much greater honor than being seen off by a head of state.
On the surface I was just another diplomat being sent by the Ministry of Defense on an overseas assignment. However, my trip to America had a heavenly significance. Of course, I was representing my country, but at the same time, I was representing the True Parents. I had no doubt that this was the course that God had commanded me to follow.
Sometime before our departure, I had the opportunity to accompany Reverend Moon to the Daehan Theater in Seoul, where we watched a movie titled The Emperors Secret Missionary. That title exactly described my situation as I left for America. I was a diplomat with a mission given by my country, but I also had an internal mission given to me by God. As I left my country, I determined that I would devote all my heart and soul to accomplishing both missions.
A Beautiful Friendship
I now stood on the grand stage of Washington, D.C., the capital of the United States of America. Besides representing their government, diplomats also represent their country and people. Therefore, an important qualification for diplomats is that they must he proud of their homeland.
In this sense, I was well prepared to he a diplomat. Although I was not particularly gifted, and my diplomatic abilities were not outstanding, I did have much greater pride in my country and people than the average Korean. Furthermore, my patriotism had been strengthened by the knowledge that the Korean people had been called by God to give birth to the True Parents of humankind. The Unification Principle had taught me that God had loved Korea and had given this country a great blessing. I was convinced that someday the beautiful country of Korea would be the center of faith for all humanity and become a central country in world events.
My heart was filled with excitement as I took up my new post. I could stand before anyone and say, "I am a proud Korean" - not from arrogance but with a feeling of deep humility, because I believed that Koreans were expected to love the world and humanity more than any other people. I did not see myself as a diplomat from an impoverished country, coming to America with hat in hand in hopes of securing material benefits for my country. Instead, I came to America possessing an expression of truth that was capable of giving life to America as the modern-day Rome.
The author during his tenure as deputy military attaché at the Korean Embassy in Washington, D.C.
As attaché, I took every opportunity to address public forums, and I always spoke with conviction and fervor. I told my audiences that Korea was a country with a highly developed culture and that Koreans' love of freedom was unparalleled in the world. I invited American military officers about to be assigned to Korea to the embassy, where I showed them a movie featuring the beauty of Korea and gave a talk about Korea. Always by the end of the presentation I would be struggling to hold hack tears and would close by saying, "This is why I love my country. I am a proud Korean." Usually, the audience would stand and applaud. During my time in Washington, I received an award from Prime Minister Yeo Chan Song for my work introducing Korea to the American people.
Not long after my arrival in Washington, a new ambassador took up his post, retired Gen. Il Kwon Chung, a hero of the Korean War. He saw the importance of my expressing my pride in being a Korean and supported me enthusiastically in my work.
Ambassador Chung was many years my senior. I had first met him when he was a general and army chief of staff during the Korean War when army headquarters was located in Taegu. I was a student at the army attaché school. At this time, the army sponsored a public speaking contest on efficient ways to utilize military supplies. I was chosen to compete representing the attaché school. As it turned out, the judges chose me as the best speaker, and I was invited to sit at General Chung's table at the awards banquet. I was still a captain then, and it was very intimidating for me to be seated at the same table with a group of generals - and especially with General Chung, who was a four-star general. I was so nervous I could hardly swallow.
At one point in the meal, General Chung said, "Captain Pak, let's see you demonstrate your speaking skills in front of these generals." I was extremely tense, but like a good solider I obeyed and began to speak on the efficient use of military supplies. When I finished the generals broke into enthusiastic applause. When Ambassador Chung arrived in Washington to take up his post, he still remembered me from this incident.
One day, the ambassador said to me, "Colonel Pak [I had been promoted to lieutenant colonel since coming to Washington], I really like listening to your English. Let's study English together three times a week."
"Yes, Mr. Ambassador," I replied, that would be an honor." I began visiting the ambassador's official residence three times a week, but as it turned out, we didn't study much English. We would always begin by practicing English, but sooner or later, the ambassador would begin talking about his experiences in the military, especially during the Korean War, and then we would cover a wide range of topics.
One day, he commented that I seemed to have stronger convictions about our country than most other Koreans and asked me how I came to them. I told him about the Divine Principle of the Unification Church and how I first came into contact with this teaching that had made me so proud to be a Korean.
Ambassador Chung was not deeply interested in religion, but he summed up what I told him in one brief sentence. "So," he said, "The Unification Church is a patriotic church."
"Yes, that's true," I told him. "It is a patriotic religion for any person of any country. Not only that, it's an anti-communist religion. It is the only religion that has the power to liberate people living under communism. Since communism is a religion without God, it can he defeated only by the religion that believes in God to the greatest degree. That religion is the Unification Church."
My friendship with Ambassador Chung lasted throughout his tour of duty in Washington and continued until his death years later in Hawaii. He always believed in me and supported me in everything I did.
His friendship and trust in me were tested and proved in 1975 when he attended Reverend Moon's first "Day of Hope Banquet" in Korea. There was a great deal of prejudice against the Unification Church at this time, and it was not easy for an important public official to accept an invitation to an event that was connected in any way to the Unification Church. Ambassador Chung by then had become speaker of the National Assembly, and no one in the church expected that he would attend. When I personally delivered the invitation to him at his office in the National Assembly Building, he said jokingly, "I would probably be punished if I were to turn down an invitation like this from my former English teacher."
Diplomat by Day, Missionary by Night
Soon, I began working at home to translate the Divine Principle into English. There was already an English translation of the Principle, but I set about creating my own as a basis for an outline for lecturing the Principle in English.
When this was complete, I started inviting friends who might be interested to my home. We would sit together in the basement, and I would give them lectures on the Principle in English. Over time, these lectures grew in popularity, and it wasn't long before American Christians started coming to me and asking me to introduce them to the Principle.
During the day, I continued my work as a diplomat, but in the evenings I was working as a missionary. More and more people were coming to my home to listen to my Principle lectures. Before long, there were more people than could be seated comfortably in our small basement. At this time there were only two Unification missionaries in the United States, both on the West Coast, so the church considered me to be its unofficial missionary for the eastern United States. The meetings in our basement eventually led to the founding of a Unification Church in Washington. I am considered the founder of the Washington church.
Life was about to teach me that efforts to do good often encounter unjust criticism and opposition. One day, a Christian minister came to see me. He said he had heard from a member of his congregation that I was sharing some wonderful content. I took him at his word and presented the Principle lectures to him. I thought it a little hit strange that he took an extraordinary amount of notes. As it turned out, his motivation for hearing the Principle was not sincere. He was afraid that unless he did something he would lose members of his congregation to the Unification Church, and he was set on sabotaging my work.
This minister wrote a letter to Ambassador Chung, detailing my activities, which caused quite a stir within the embassy. I wrote a report on my activities, deeply concerned that the whole affair might place Ambassador Chung in a difficult position. When the ambassador called me to his office, though, he spoke in a tone that suggested he was not impressed by the criticism against me.
He said, "You have the ability to present an argument to Americans and convince them that you are right. That's an invaluable tool." Sometime later the embassy prepared a written response to the minister. The gist of it was to remind the minister that America was a country that guaranteed freedom of religion and that there was nothing wrong with an individual sharing the tenets of his faith with interested persons.
The embassy's finding was that my activities did not compromise my work with the embassy. Indeed, in those days embassy personnel were encouraged to attend American churches every Sunday.
But the controversy did not end there. The minister who wrote the letter took his case to the Washington correspondents of Korean newspapers. He provided them with material they needed to write articles on how a member of the Korean Embassy staff was declaring that Reverend Moon was the messiah.
When these articles appeared in the Korean press, the Christian churches in Korea went into action. They lodged protests with the Ministry of Defense, asking how it was that public funds had been spent to send a missionary of the Unification Church to the United States. The Christian churches then plotted to pressure the Ministry of Defense into removing me from my post. They wanted me to he recalled.
In fact, a recall order was drafted and presented to the army chief of staff, Gen. Jong Oh Kim, for his signature. When General Kim saw the document, he reportedly said. "Colonel Pak? I know Colonel Pak a lot better than any of you. He is a patriot. Stop this nonsense." He angrily tore up the documents and threw them away.
General Kim had been my commanding officer in the Ninth Division when we were fighting the North Korean People's Army for control of the White Horse Highlands. He saw me as a young, hardworking officer. He had invited me to dinner a few times, and we had talked deeply. From that time, it seems. General Kim had a special regard for me. He was the division commander who had recommended me for the Gold Star Hwa-Rang Medal for outstanding military service in combat that I had been awarded in 1953.
Thus, I escaped the indignity of being recalled from my diplomatic post. I thanked God, but I wasn't sure what the ultimate meaning of this experience could be.
When my original three-year tour of duty at the embassy was completed, I was ordered to extend my stay by six months, in recognition of my outstanding record. I finally left the embassy and returned to Korea after three and a half years. By this time, Ambassador Chung had been appointed to the post of minister of foreign affairs. Soon after, he became prime minister.
In 1965, the author is seen off by his father (far right) and Reverend and Mrs. Moon as he leaves for America as a full-time missionary.
As I returned to Korea, I made up my mind to retire from the military. It had been fourteen years since I first entered the Korean Military Academy, determined to someday wear a general's stars on my shoulders. By the time I completed my mission as a diplomat, however, I was beginning to dream of stars of a very different variety. Instead of those earned by killing people in war, I now dreamed of earning the stars of an army that sought to make people live. I wanted to stand on the world stage and shout with all my might the words of life that would bring salvation to all humankind. My new dream was to become a modern-day Apostle Paul.
1 realized it was for this purpose that God had given me the ability to communicate in English and had given me diplomatic experience. In fact, it was for this work that God had saved me from certain death on that bloody riverbank many years before.
"That's right," I told myself. "My stage is the world. I've switched from an earthly army to the army of Heaven. What job in this world could be more rewarding than that of spreading the teachings by which God seeks to establish His kingdom on earth?"
I returned to my homeland with a heart filled with hope. This was in October 1964. I retired from the army, and just a few months later, in January 1965, I returned to America, this time as an official "missionary to the world."
Though I had left the military, I was still a soldier of Christ, only now my weapons were truth and love. I was no longer the emperor's secret emissary." Instead, I landed on American soil as "God's ambassador."
Launching the Korean Cultural and Freedom Foundation
I did miss being able to wear my uniform. The Republic of Korea's flag and the uniform of its army were two items that had been integral to my life for a long time. Naturally, I wanted to begin my work with a patriotic project to elevate the position of my homeland and its people.
In the America of 1965, the aftereffects of the Korean War were still evident. The word "Korea" was most closely associated with war, poverty, and orphans. Korea was the place where Americans sent used clothing and other goods for refugee relief, and Americans were adopting war orphans from Korea. I was grateful to them, but as a person who took great pride in Korea and its people, this association with neediness was hard to bear.
I wanted to proclaim that Korea has a rich history of five thousand years and that Koreans possess a praiseworthy culture. I wanted to let people know that Koreans had an unparalleled anti-communist spirit and that we had sacrificed more than anyone, not just for our own freedom but for that of all the world's people. After much thought, I decided that the best way to do this would be to emphasize "culture" and the spirit of freedom." This is how I came to create the Korean Cultural and Freedom Foundation.
I sought advice on this matter from former Ambassador Yoo Chan Yang, whom I had first met following my long taxi ride from Georgia in 1952 and who was living in Washington at the time. The ambassador was enthusiastic about my ideas and assured me that he would cooperate in any way he could. His words made me feel as though I had gained the help of an army of a thousand men.
Ambassador Yang was an extremely gifted diplomat, a fervent patriot, and a strong anti-communist. His English was excellent, and he had a sense of humor that was well appreciated by Americans. He was a wonderful person with whom to work.
I set up an office in Washington and took the necessary steps to establish the foundation. I asked Ambassador Yang to take the position of vice president and the legendary American naval hero Admiral Arleigh Burke to become president. Because of these two men, we were able to have former U.S. Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower and Harry S. Truman serve as honorary presidents, which made it possible for the foundation to establish contacts with many of the most important people in America.
It was decided that the official name would he the Korean Cultural and Freedom Foundation, Inc. People who loved Korea came forward to be its supporters.
It was well known that President Eisenhower and President Truman had never gotten along together, so it became quite a story in the news media at the time that these two men had come together to create a foundation to promote Korea's culture and spirit of freedom. Many senators and congressmen agreed to become advisers to the foundation. The Internal Revenue Service quickly approved the foundation for tax-exempt status, making donations tax-deductible.
However, although the foundation had a name and a structure, it lacked one essential - money. As the foundation's secretary-general, it was my responsibility to procure funds, and in order to raise funds, it was necessary to come up with a concrete plan of action.
The Little Angels in a scene from: The Fan Dance."
We decided to work in two areas. First, in the area of culture, the foundation decided it would support performances of the Little Angels, a Korean children's dance group specializing in traditional Korean dance. The Little Angels were "angels of peace," and they effectively used dance and song to introduce people around the world to Korea's unique culture. Second, the foundation chose Radio of Free Asia to promote the Republic of Korea's shining spirit of freedom in a world where the ideological conflict of the cold war continued and also to broadcast truth to the masses of people living behind the Iron Curtain.
The Lillie Angels
The Little Angels dance troupe was founded in 1962 by Reverend Moon. Since then, they have gone on numerous world tours and visited almost every corner of the globe. They were awarded the gold medal for promoting the global position of the Republic of Korea.
It is amazing how popular this children s dance troupe has been with audiences all around the world, accomplishing things with cultural diplomacy that state diplomacy could not. Over the past several decades, the Little Angels have become the face of Korea both in name and in fact.
It was Reverend Moon who foresaw that such a troupe could bring wonderful results and took the initiative to found it. I was still working at the Washington embassy when he sent the a message that he was concerned about the future of the country and that he intended to create a children's dance troupe whose role would be to let the world know about Korea's rich traditions in both dance and music. He said it was important that this group he able to travel throughout the world and that he wanted me to create a base for this in the United States.
I completely agreed with his proposal. More than anything, I was moved by Reverend Moon's deep patriotism and his desire to restore Korea's image in the world. There was part of this proposal that I couldn't understand, however. "Why," I asked him in a letter, "does this have to he a troupe of children? Are you sure you want me to take a group of runny-nosed children and put them on stages around the world?"
Reverend Moon's reply was very inspiring. He said: "Children symbolize peace. All the people of the world love children. Children can transcend differences of race, religion, and ideology. Jesus said, 'Unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.' [Matthew 18:3] The Book of Isaiah [11:6] says, '...and a little child shall lead them.' The purity and honesty of the children is what the world needs. They're not after money or glory. They're not caught up in relations with the opposite sex. They just dance and have fun. They are the best symbol of the Kingdom of Heaven. No one can express Korea's love of peace better than our children."
I have accompanied the Little Angels on tour around the world for the past thirty-some years, and I have seen again and again that Reverend Moon prophesied correctly. There has been no place in the world where the Little Angels were not welcomed with open arms. These young angels truly have been the messengers of peace.
The author with Queen Elizabeth II after the Little Angels command performance.
We discovered that the Little Angels possess incredible power: the power of love and beauty. They have been able to break down every barrier. No one has been able to keep their hearts from melting. The Little Angels were invited to the White House many times. President Richard M. Nixon invited them to perform at a state dinner held in honor of British Prime Minister Edward Heath. All the dignitaries present were spellbound by the children's playfulness, their singing and their dancing. They completely upstaged the main attraction of the evening, which was the "David Frost Show."
The General Assembly Hall of the United Nations Building is rarely used for performances, but the Little Angels are the exception that proves the rule. They performed in this hall - despite objections from the Soviet Union. The traditional Korean melodies echoed in the General Assembly Hall as the music of peace.
Queen Elizabeth II invited the Little Angels for a command performance. Afterward, all members of the troupe were invited to a royal reception. This was unprecedented. After this, the Little Angels were flooded with invitations from heads of state and royal families of European countries.
Even the Iron Curtain could not stop the Little Angels. At a time when the Republic of Korea and the Soviet Union had not yet established diplomatic relations, Soviet First Lady Raisa Gorbachev invited the Little Angels to Moscow for a historic performance. The performance hall was packed with dignitaries.
During more than three decades of world tours the Little Angels have performed in sixty-seven countries. Their more than three thousand stage performances and more than three hundred television performances have substantially raised the world community's respect for Korea and its culture. Their accomplishments are unprecedented in Korean history.
In 1967, the Little Angels performed at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. At the finale, the audience of journalists and other media people went wild with applause and cheers. Afterward, Mrs. David LeRoy, wife of the president of the National Press Club, came backstage and said as she wiped the tears from her eyes, "I've never regretted the fact that I am not rich more than I have this evening. If I were rich, I would devote all my wealth to send the Little Angels around the world seven times. Then our world would become a world of peace."
I have seen many people weep as they watched the Little Angels perform. These are not tears of sorrow. People are often busy and lonely as they go through their lives in this spiritually polluted world, but when they see our pure and beautiful young angels, their original nature is stimulated and tears well up from deep within them tears of joy. The Little Angels are innocent and adorable. People feel like they are experiencing something that is not of this world. They are getting a taste of the Kingdom of Heaven.
This is the power of the Little Angels that I often talk about: the power of natural beauty, purity, and love, a power that builds rather than destroys.
However, the beginning of the Little Angels was neither grand nor illustrious. We rented a humble house in Seoul - the roof leaked every time it rained - where about a dozen children of Unification Church families received dance lessons. No one imagined then that these children would reach a level where they could perform around the world.
I met these youngsters for the first time in 1964, after my return to Korea following my assignment at the Korean Embassy in Washington. Miss Soon Shim Shin, the founding president of the troupe, was waging a lonely battle armed only with his faith that the impossible could be made possible. I stood before the children and declared that they would make their first tour of the United States in the following year, that is, 1965, as the first project taken on by the newly established Korean Cultural and Freedom Foundation. It sounded unbelievable, but it inspired the children to put all their effort into their lessons. I simply trusted my own faith and the words of Reverend Moon. I did not want to disappoint Miss Shin and the children, who were carrying on a lonely struggle.
Even though we had no money, a miracle happened and the tour became reality. On September 20, 1965, after flying halfway around the world, the Little Angels visited former President Dwight D. Eisenhower, honorary chairman of the KCFF. The Little Angels' first performance on American soil took place in the garden of the Eisenhower residence in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
President Eisenhower applauded and smiled his famous "Ike smile" throughout the performance. At the end, he praised the children saying. "The angels in heaven are in big trouble because of you angels from Korea. The angels in heaven are going to have to work hard to keep up with you."
The next day, the Little Angels officially opened their American tour at the Washington Hilton in Washington. D.C., with a performance before an audience of dignitaries associated with the KCFF.
The Little Angels' first American tour was a tremendous success. They performed in a number of cities around the country and created a sensation. Reverend Moon's judgment had been correct. The reason the children were so popular everywhere they went was that they were undefiled girls and boys - actually, the boys were very few - between the ages of eight and fifteen. Once they got onstage, however, they demonstrated total mastery of their repertoire. Being children, they had unlimited energy. At the same time, they demonstrated a high level of accomplishment in their dancing skills.
A delighted President Dwight D. Eisenhower receives a gift from one of the Little Angels after a special performance at the former presidents home in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
The children enjoyed themselves throughout the tour. When they were not performing, they were usually laughing and singing. They helped each other as though they were real sisters and brothers. They usually stayed five to a room in hotels, and the older ones were responsible to watch over the others. Even when bus trips lasted many hours, they were never bored. Our buses were always filled with the sounds of the children talking, playing, and singing. Eventually, they would get tired and fall asleep.
We started a tradition of praying together onstage immediately before each performance. It was a simple prayer, but the sound of the children praying was beautiful: Our Father in heaven, thank you very much. Our Father in heaven, thank you very much. We pray in the name of our Lord, amen."
Then the curtain would go up. The bright stage lights would shine on the children, their faces carefully made up. Their beauty was not of this world. In fact, the word "beautiful" does not even come close to doing them justice. There was a sense of sacredness about them. As I watched them perform, I felt as though I was in God's presence.
At every performance, the Little Angels excited and inspired the audience. The children were happy and put all their energies into each performance. There were never any feelings of regret following a performance. They did not care about money or fame. They weren't interested in impressing members of the opposite sex. They danced and sang solely for the honor of Korea and the glory of God.
At the end of a performance, the audience would always give a standing ovation.
This is how the children planted a different view of Korea in the hearts of everyone in the audience. They were impressed in a way they were unlikely to ever forget.
Once the curtain was down, a kind of controlled chaos would break out. We had to pack our gear as quickly as possible and load it all in the luggage space in the lower section of the bus. While this work was going on, everyone had to be fully involved; it didn't matter if a person was old or young, man or woman. Even the elderly musicians who played classical Korean music on traditional instruments had to work. Nor were exceptions made for the youngest children on the tour. Everyone would work together, and we would finish loading in a half hour.
They were better than the most well-trained army - and they were not being coerced. As they rode the bus through the night, the children would still be excited from all the applause that they had received. They would start singing as soon as the bus began moving.
Heaven and Hell in the American Tour
The children referred to me as their "American daddy." For as long as they were touring America, they were my sons and daughters, and I truly loved, served, and taught each of them as I would my own son or daughter. I tried to teach them three basic principles.
"You can dance beautifully," I would tell them, "only if you have a beautiful heart. You can sing beautifully only if you have a beautiful heart. You can have a beautiful face only if you have a beautiful heart." These words were easy to understand, but they contained profound philosophical meaning. I was telling them that art is an expression of a person's inner character and that they should first he people with beautiful hearts.
To have a beautiful heart, I told them, they had to practice honesty, kindness, and service. They could build a wonderful character for themselves by concentrating on those three virtues. Beautiful hearts take root and sprout in the child who is honest, kind, and serves others. In the terminology of the Divine Principle, this is the practice of true love.
Later, when the Little Angels Performing Arts School was established, these three words became the school motto. For high school students, a fourth word was added: "purity."
The Little Angels on tour were a tiny community that lived by these principles, and for my wife and me it was always like living in heaven. My wife was busy fulfilling her role as their "American mommy." She worked to prepare many jars of kimchi, and she made sure that the bulgogi [marinated beef] was cooked well. She prepared a party for each child who celebrated a birthday while on tour.
However, once the children completed their journey around America and returned to Korea, my wife and I went straight from heaven to hell. Why hell? As long as the Little Angels were with us in America, my wife and I did our best for them without any regard for finances or other issues that might come up after they went home. As far as we were concerned, they were royalty, little princes and princesses who were visiting America from Korea. The performances did not bring much revenue, however. Since they were supported by the KCFF, it was up to the foundation to provide financial support. The foundation itself, though, had only just been created. Funds were extremely limited.
So as soon as my wife and I saw the children off on their flight to Korea, we found ourselves buried under a mountain of debt. There are few things more painful than the suffering caused by worries over money. Creditors in various parts of America would start demanding that we at least pay the interest on our debts. My wife and I just threw up our hands in resignation.
By the time the Little Angels finished their autumn tour, stores and neighborhoods would be decorated with Christmas lights, and Christmas carols could be heard everywhere, but my wife and I found it hard to enjoy the holiday spirit. Our hearts were too heavy. How could we repay the debts that the Little Angels had left behind?
I wrote a letter describing our very difficult situation and sent it to twelve people among the many dignitaries who had formed a relationship with the KCFF. The letter included a sincere request for financial assistance in carrying out this very worthwhile cultural project. No one had replied. My wife and I were completely discouraged.
One day, we decided to treat ourselves to a meal at a restaurant as a way to give ourselves some encouragement. We each ordered a simple dish and were about to start eating when the restaurant manager came and told us we had a phone call. We both assumed it was another creditor demanding money, and this thought immediately ruined our appetites.
I took the receiver and was surprised to recognize the voice on the other end as that of my secretary at the foundation office. "Mr. Pak," she said, "an extremely important piece of mail was just delivered. Its from Mrs. Wallace." Lila Acheson Wallace, co-founder of the Readers Digest, was one of the twelve people to whom I had sent letters.
"Really'?" I told her. "Well, open it and read it to me."
I held my breath as I waited. The secretary cut the envelope open and then let out a cry. "Mr. Pak, it's a check. It's a check. It's a check for twenty-five thousand dollars! And there's a note. It says 'Merry Christmas to the Little Angels.'" I couldn't help but burst into tears. When I returned to our table and told my wife, her head slumped down against her chest and she began to cry, too. God had not been unmindful of our situation after all. In tears, we prayed together in gratitude.
Twenty-five thousand dollars was a lot of money in 1965. It was enough for me to pay all the expenses for the tour, including the airfare owed to Northwest Airlines. I later told Mrs. Wallace, "You saved the Little Angels Performing Arts Troupe."
From then on, Mrs. Wallace became a hacker of the Little Angels. Every year, she would make a donation of $25,000. In large part, it was due to Mrs. Wallace's generosity that the Little Angels were able to continue their American tours during the early years.
Later on, Mrs. Wallace attended a performance and commented, "I have helped a lot of cultural projects, but none has given me as much joy as supporting these angels. These little angels are angels of peace."
Who would have thought in these early days that the Little Angels would eventually play a direct role in the rapprochement between North and South Korea? How this came about is described in Volume Two.
The Voice of Freedom Echoes Across Communist Asia
For the second project of the KCFF, I called out to the people of America that we needed to penetrate the Iron Curtain and the Bamboo Curtain with the truth. I told them that only the truth could liberate the communist bloc, and the best way to deliver the truth to the most remote areas of communist countries was to broadcast it over the airwaves.
Europe already had this type of broadcast in Radio Free Europe, but there was no similar broadcast in Asia. The KCFF decided that it would begin such a radio broadcast service as its anti-communist activity, to he called Radio of Free Asia. However, the foundation didn't have the financial resources to create an operation on the level of Radio Free Europe, so it was decided to contract with the Korea Broadcast Service and lease a powerful short-wave transmitter by the hour.
Programs were prepared in three languages: a Korean-language broadcast targeted at North Korea, a Chinese-language broadcast targeted at mainland China, and a Vietnamese-language broadcast targeted at Vietnam.
The foundation initiated a major fundraising effort to support this operation. We called on all Americans to strengthen their resolve against communism, become members of an anti-communist struggle that relies upon the truth, and support Radio of Free Asia. Tens of millions of letters were sent out across America. For the most part, my family and I did this mailing by ourselves.
We were successful in gaining broad support from the American public for our fundraising effort. It was truly by God's blessing that we received support from former Presidents Eisenhower and Truman, major figures in the United States Senate and House of Representatives, and even some unexpected support from famous Hollywood movie stars. John Wayne, Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, and Charlton Heston signed the fundraising letter, and the American people responded by sending their contributions to help this meaningful anti-communist effort. We received contributions from hundreds of people every day.
The fundraising requests all went out by direct mail, and this meant that we had to handle hundreds of thousands of pieces of mail every month. It was not an easy task. I set up a factory in the basement of our house - a "letter factory." One machine pasted the address labels on the envelopes, another stuffed envelopes, another put the stamps on the envelopes, and another separated the envelopes according to the addresses.
My wife and I were the head technicians of the mailing service. We trained our children to be technicians as well. It was a family operation that employed the most highly developed technology. Everyone worked late into the night, and it became no big deal for us to send out one hundred thousand envelopes in a day.
During the day, our children would go to school and I would go to work at the office. My wife would use a computer to print out address labels and a sophisticated machine made by a company called Cheshire to paste these labels onto the envelopes that were stacked like a paper mountain in the basement. This operation required a lot of skill, which my wife mastered. She was the real head of our factory. My wife would cook our dinner and afterward we would all go down to the basement and the factory would go into full production.
When we were done for the day, I would load bags of direct mail envelopes into our Volkswagen and take them to the central post office near the Capitol. Each hag weighed about as much as a big hag of rice, and a few dozen of these had to be taken to the post office each night. By the time I finished, my body would ache all over. Everyone was just as tired, though, so I couldn't complain. Instead, I would thank them for their work and do what I could to ease their pain.
I was particularly grateful for my wife's dedication to helping me in my work. Her health was somewhat frail to begin with, however, and the work she did made matters considerably worse. For years she has suffered from a chronic asthma condition, and I'm sure that it was exacerbated by the physically taxing schedule she kept to help send out these mailings. At first, she kept telling me that it was just a cold and that I shouldn't worry. I regret now that I didn't have the wisdom to take the necessary steps then to correct her condition.
I would tell my children, "I bet you don't realize right now how important the work that you're doing really is. But when you grow up, I think you will see how the work that kept you up so late was really important in undermining communism and in saving the lives of a lot of people.
"So, you letter factory technicians, today is a special day. Let's all go out for a treat." The children shouted: "Wow. Daddy. Great!" And we would all go out for ice cream or a McDonald's hamburger. Today, these have become beautiful memories.
Through such efforts, the KCFF and Radio of Free Asia prospered. At its height, more than one hundred thousand Americans were full members of the foundation and supported the project through their donations.
Radio of Free Asia broadcasts reached North Korea, China, and Vietnam - the major communist countries of Asia during a thirteen-year period from 1965 to 1978. Particularly during the 1970s, when the war in Vietnam was at its peak, a great deal of effort was poured into Radio of Free Asia. As a result, we finally succeeded in realizing our dream of becoming a self-supporting broadcast station with our own transmitter.
Naturally, the liberal forces that were gradually gaining strength in America were not pleased with our success. In 1976 and 1977, the Tong Sun Park incident attracted the attention of the American public. Park was a Korean businessman who was indicted in the United States for using bribery to increase the Korean government's influence on the U.S. Congress. Congressman Donald Fraser, chairman of the House Subcommittee on International Organizations, tried to use this incident to help him in his run for the Senate. Congressman Fraser accused Radio of Free Asia of being an agent of the Korean government, claiming that the radio was using funds received from the Korean government to influence public opinion in the United States. He launched a full-scale attack, trying to undermine the KCFF's anti-communist and victory-over-communism activities and the activities of the Unification Church.
I had once recommended to Korea's President Park Chung Hee that he send a letter of thanks to the patriotic anti-communist Americans supporting Radio of Free Asia. President Park was so moved by this that he wrote the letter himself on his official stationery.
The KCFF never received so much as a penny of funds from the Korean government. Yet, in 1978 I was subpoenaed to testify before the Fraser Committee. This became a serious battle for the survival of the KCFF and the Unification Church. Congressman Fraser's ultimate purpose was to use this as an opportunity to brand the Unification Church as an agent of the Korean government, take away its status as a religious organization, and expel it from the United States.
I faced this battle with my honor and my life on the line. I describe it in detail in Chapter Thirteen. For now, I would like the reader to understand that Radio of Free Asia, which had been developing at an amazing pace with the full support of the American public, was forced to stop broadcasting as a result of this unjust investigation.
Radio of Free Asia contributed to the end of the Cold War and the fall of the Soviet empire. It represented the most exalted work of free people. It gives me great comfort to know that the efforts of my family and myself through Radio of Free Asia ultimately were not made in vain.
Reverend Moon 's First American Visit
In 1965, Reverend Moon visited America for the first time. Unbeknownst to most of the world, this was the most important historic event of that year. It had great significance both for Korea and the United States and was extremely important in the providence of God. Heaven's representative, the master of Christianity, had come to the United States, a Christian country.
Why was it so important that Reverend Moon came to America? To understand, let us look at America's history with regard to religion.
America is basically a Christian country. Freedom of religion is at the core of its democratic ideals. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution states that the government cannot make any one religion the state religion, nor can it place limits on the freedom of any religion to carry out its activities. America has always been a haven for those seeking religious freedom.
If we look a little further back in history at some of the events that led to America's founding, we see that after the Protestant Reformation, Europe went through a long period of religious warfare that transformed the continent into a huge bloody battlefield. It was against this background that certain Protestant believers who were suffering under the oppression of the established authorities of the Catholic and Anglican churches chose the American continent as a place where they could escape the dark world of persecution.
At the time, America was an unexplored world, and no one could be certain of being able to survive there, assuming one survived the journey. Crossing the Atlantic using the still primitive navigational technology of the time was extremely dangerous. Going to the New World was undertaken only by devout believers who were prepared to risk their lives to worship the way they wanted. The Puritans' absolute faith gave them the courage to put their lives on the line for the sake of religious freedom. Their voyage on the Mayflower was the beginning point for spreading the gospel to the American continent. It was from here that America began to take shape as a Christian nation.
Later, the American continent came to represent a new land of hope not only for Europe but also for people throughout the world. Immigrants came to America from every corner of the globe, creating a nation of immigrants. However, the tradition of Christianity continued to exercise a decisive influence. This made America a melting pot, a miniature version of the world as a whole. It became the World's first Christian, multi-ethnic country.
All these events did not come about by some coincidence, but clearly took place within the context of God's providence.
America is the land of milk and honey. It is the world's greatest power. It is a wealthy country. How are we to interpret the fact that this land remained unknown to the world at large until the 1600s? Would I he wrong to assert that God kept this land in reserve to be used in the Last Days for His very important and terrible providence? If that is the case, then it is only natural that the nation He established on this land be founded on the Christian faith. From this perspective, it seems obvious that the world's Christian countries have been established to prepare for the Second Coming during the Last Days.
Until the time of Jesus, Israel was the chosen nation. After Jesus' time, the chosen people were Christians around the world who carried on Jesus' teachings. They are the ones who are to receive the Lord when he comes again. That is. they are the "Second Israel." The Lord of the Second Advent returns to his home, which is the earth, and Christians are the people to whom he initially comes.
In this situation, Korea stands in the position of the "Third Israel." Korea is the country that physically receives the Lord, who conies in the flesh. It also means that Koreans have the first opportunity to follow the coming Lord. I have already testified that this historic event of the Second Coming has already occurred.
Now let's look back at the history of Christianity. After Jesus' physical body was lost on the cross as a result of the chosen people of Israel's disbelief and persecution, Christianity placed the resurrected Jesus at the center of its faith. It raised the battle flag of evangelism and stormed the Roman Empire, which was the center of the world at the time.
This daring strategy succeeded only because it was carried out by Christians whose faith in the resurrected Jesus was absolute. On the foundation of this faith, Christians formed a barehanded and fearless heavenly army that endured all manner of hardships and martyrdoms until it succeeded in conquering Rome after four centuries. The Christian conquest of the Roman Empire exemplifies God performing miracles through those who are ignorant and weak in order to embarrass those who are wise and powerful.
During the Middle Ages, Christianity acquired absolute power and, in stark contrast to the age when it itself was persecuted, succumbed to corruption. Those who held power in the church establishment carried out horrific persecutions in the name of God. Certainly, this was not an age when God could send His son back to earth.
Eventually, there was another revolution in Christianity. This was the Protestant Reformation that began in 1517 with Martin Luther's "Ninety-five Theses" and spread throughout Europe. From this time, God's providence moved from Catholicism to Protestantism. This was the beginning of a period of some four hundred years in which Protestantism prospered in order to prepare for the Second Coming.
America is the place where this prosperity has come to full bloom. It is only natural, then, that the Lord who appears in Korea would sooner or later come to America and make this country the center for a worldwide movement to build the Kingdom of Heaven.
Reverend Moon with three of the Pak children during a stop in the author's hone.
Reverend Moon first stood on American soil on February 12, 1965. What could be called the advance party that had been sent out to prepare for his arrival consisted of only three people: Professor Young Oon Kim in San Francisco, Mr. Sang Chul (David) Kim in Eugene, Oregon, and myself, who had just arrived back on the East Coast. Professor Kim, of course was the former Ehwa University professor who led me to the Principle. David Kim later became the first president of the Unification Theological Seminary. The number of American members in 1965 was still quite small, but they welcomed Reverend Moon with tremendous excitement.
The first task Reverend Moon undertook in America was to tour all fifty states by car and establish a "holy ground" in each state capital. At each holy ground site, he buried stones and soil brought from Korea and offered a special prayer. Then he and his party would jump hack in the car and continue their grueling journey. Amazingly. Reverend Moon covered all fifty states and the District of Columbia in just over forty days. I was fortunate to participate in this historic course.
Reverend Moon then traveled around the world, establishing a total of 120 holy grounds. Thus. he linked the land of Korea to the lands throughout the world.
Reverend and Mrs. Moon pose for a commemorative photograph with the Pak family during their stay in the Pak family home. (Back row left to right: Jun Sun. Na Kyung, Mrs. Pak, the author. Front from left to right Jin.Sung, Reverend Moon. Hoon .Sook, Jin Kyung, Mrs. Moon, and Yun Sook.)
An Unforgettable Three Months
Before continuing his world tour, Reverend Moon spent about three months at the Washington Church, that is, my family's home in Arlington, Virginia, from the end of March 1965 to July. During these months, he spent a great deal of time with our family.
Having Reverend Moon, the messiah returned, stay in my home was the greatest experience of my life. It is something that is beyond the dreams of any Unification Church member.
During this time, our children became quite familiar with Father. When he appeared in the morning, our second daughter, Hoon Sook, who was two years old, would wave to him and say, "Abonim." Then, Father would pick her up and hold her high above his head. Much later, Hoon Sook married into True Parents family as their second daughter-in-law. Today, she is renowned throughout the world as the principal ballerina and general director of the Universal Ballet Company.
From this time, our home became Reverend Moon's second home. He would stay with us whenever he was in the Washington area. Once, Reverend Moon took a photograph with three of our children on his lap and another time one with our entire family. These photos are eternal treasures of our family.
When Reverend Moon first arrived in America, our home was still serving as the Washington Church. (Quite a few people had been led to the church during my diplomatic assignment.) According to U.S. law, a family residence could serve as a church. We created a church meeting hall in our basement. What had once been a letter factory for Radio of Free Asia was now the sanctuary of the \Washington Church. Reverend Moon led services here on a number of occasions.
People who had heard of Reverend Moon came to these services from near and far. For Reverend Moon, this three-month period was primarily a time of meditation in which he devised his strategy with regard to the Americas and the world.
For me, it was an important time in which I could complete my English translation of the Divine Principle under Reverend Moon's supervision. Every day, Reverend Moon spoke to me about the deep meaning of the Divine Principle and about God's strategy for the world. I can never forget this time.
Looking back, I can see that the blueprints for all that the Unification movement has done in America and the world during the past thirty-plus years were drawn during this period in our home. Every evening, I would listen to Reverend Moon speak, and it was as if I was looking through some special looking glass as God's strategy for the world was being unfolded. I also gained a clear understanding of what part in this strategy would be my responsibility to fulfill.
The plans of Heaven that back then seemed like some far-off dream have been brought to reality today. In fact, even more has been accomplished than what I heard then. The past thirty years have been an incredible time. I plan to testify to the events of this period one by one, beginning in the next chapter. My worry is that my words may not he sufficient to allow the reader to comprehend these incredible works of God.
It is not my intention at all to attempt to write the standard historical text on the course walked by the Lord of the Second Advent. All I can do is testify the best I can to the miraculous works of God that I have witnessed as a humble disciple.
The first item in God's strategy for the world was to organize the Victory Over Communism movement throughout the world. The ultimate goal was to liberate the Soviet Union, the headquarters of communism. Reverend Moon said that communism represented the final satanic force that stood in the way of the messiah. Only the returning messiah, he said, could defeat communism. He saw the defeat of communism as his first responsibility. Reverend Moon said communism, a system of thought based on atheism, could be subjugated and defeated only by means of "Godism," a system of thought that enables people to know the reality of God's existence. It is the messiah, that is, the Lord of the Second Advent, who brings Godism to the world.
The second item was to transfer the World Mission Headquarters from Korea to the United States. The movement created by Jesus eventually moved its headquarters from Israel to Rome. In the same way, the holy work of the Second Advent would be carried out on the Korean peninsula during the early stages, but its central focus would eventually have to be moved to America. Reverend Moon set the timing for this move as five years from the time he was speaking. The most important and decisive condition for this move was for Reverend and Mrs. Moon to acquire legal status as permanent residents in the United States. Without permanent resident status, it would be impossible for Reverend Moon to carry on his religious activities freely and push forward God's worldwide providence.
The third item in God's strategy to save the world was to foster the unity and revival of the Christian church in America. Reverend Moon said that the Christian church in America had the most important role to play in the providence of God centering on the Lord of the Second Advent. In contrast to what happened with the first Israel, it was important that Christianity as the second Israel receive the coming Lord. This was the only way to correct the mistake of putting Jesus on the cross two thousand years ago. It was the only way that Gods ideal for a Kingdom of Heaven on earth centering on the Lord of the Second Advent could be brought to completion. In the Divine Principle, such a process of returning to an original state 1w indemnifying past sin is referred to as "restoration through indemnity."
The fourth item was to establish absolute values. Only values centered on God's eternal and unchanging love can themselves be eternal and unchanging, or absolute, All the problems of the world arise from the confusion in values. Humanistic values have become pervasive throughout the world. For this reason, at the end of the twentieth century the moral corruption of youth around the world has reached a level that would have been hard to imagine just a few decades ago. Adam and Eve were about sixteen or seventeen years old when they committed the Fall in the Garden of Eden, and so it is to be expected that in the Last Days illicit sex and promiscuity will be common among teenagers. It is impossible to resolve this confusion in the world unless a new system of values is established that can be the basis for educating our youth.
The corning Lord establishes a God-centered system of values, which is Godism. The moral recovery of the world's youth will determine whether we go in the direction of hell or heaven. This moral recovery can he accomplished only through the thought system of the coating Lord.
The ideal of the Kingdom of heaven on earth implies bringing about a world of righteousness. Each person is to become a temple where God will dwell. The Kingdom of Heaven on earth is any place where such people gather and live. It is only God's true son who can accomplish this.
Reverend Moon spent those three months meditating and speaking about these matters. For me, it was a precious opportunity to get a glimpse of the Kingdom of Heaven. It was certainly one of the high points in my life.
Reverend Moon visited America again in 1969 as part of another world tour, and in late 1971, on his third world tour, I was selected to accompany him and his wife. My memories of this tour alone would be enough to fill an entire volume.
Download entire page and pages related to it in ZIP format
Table of Contents