Truth Is My Sword Volume I - Collected Speeches in the Public Arena

by Bo Hi Pak

Uruguayan-Japanese Sisterhood Ceremonies

November 24, 1996

The Women's Federation for World Peace held a sisterhood ceremony in Montevideo, Uruguay, on November 24, 1996, at the Municipal Sports Gymnasium. The program brought together women from Uruguay and Japan in a spirit of sisterly camaraderie and in concern for the myriad of challenges that are common to both cultures. This intercultural experience has spread to practically every country in the world. At this event, attended by more than 5,000 guests, Dr. Pak introduced the keynote speaker, the Honorable Walter Hickle, former Secretary of the Interior of the United States and former two-time governor of the State of Alaska.

Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, today I have the great honor and privilege to welcome our special speaker, the Hon. Walter Hickle, Secretary of the Interior of the United States and twice Governor of the State of Alaska. This is indeed an historic moment not only for Uruguay but for Latin America. Rev. Moon has brought about 4,200 beautiful Japanese ladies halfway around the world to Montevideo. It is their first experience of this kind in their life. They are all looking forward to meeting their Uruguayan sisters. They are all so excited that many are shedding tears for joy. It is indeed the thrill of a lifetime for them.

Now all you beautiful Uruguayan ladies, you are beauty queens today. Uruguayan people are very kind and your country is a country of heart, big heart. On the map your country even looks like a heart. I love your country. I am very glad you are participating in these historic ceremonies. You are all getting Japanese sisters today. They all love you. You will love them I am sure.

Secretary Hickle has been a champion for international friendship by promoting innovative international free trade. This was especially true of the U.S.-Japan relationship. He was against trade wars but in favor of trade partnerships, for which he is respected and loved by all Japanese people.

In May 1988 he was awarded the "Grand Cordon of the Order of the Sacred Treasure" by His Imperial Majesty, the Emperor of Japan, for his contributions to furthering trade relations between the U.S. and Japan, and for promoting universal human values.

He was the 38th Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, twice the Governor of the State of Alaska, where he made major contributions toward the national energy policy, and the environment.

However, most importantly, he has been a champion for the cause of the family and true world peace. He just celebrated his 51st wedding anniversary with his wife. He has six children and fifteen grandchildren. He was also born on the most important day of the year. August 18. Do you know why? That is my birthday. Having been born on that day, he must be a good man.

Today, Mr. Secretary, your presence is all the more meaningful as we celebrate the grand opening of the new and only five-star hotel in this country, the Victoria Plaza. As one who pioneered our Uruguayan investment, Mr. Secretary, I would like to briefly testify to you as well as to all Uruguayan people as to why Rev. and Mrs. Moon decided to make such a dynamic investment here in Uruguay.

First, Uruguay is one of the most democratic countries in the entire world, with a government of the highest moral and ethical standard.

Second, Uruguayans are a great, industrious people with the highest educational and cultural levels. They are destined to be future leaders of Latin America, and an example to be followed. All in all, Uruguay is the oasis of Latin America.

Rev. and Mrs. Moon love Uruguay and the Uruguayan people, and firmly believe that Uruguay is on the way to becoming an advanced model for the developing nations in this hemisphere. The opening of the Victoria Plaza Hotel will certainly bring a turning point of the Uruguayan economy.

Rev. Moon was especially impressed by the beautiful family traditions of the Uruguayan people. This is why Uruguay has become a center of great activities to promote family values and a God-centered way of life throughout all of Latin America and the world. It is Rev. Moon's deepest hope that Uruguay can be a launching pad for this moral crusade and family movement.

Rev. and Mrs. Moon initiated these sisterhood ceremonies first in Korea, then in the United States and now in Latin America. Today's ceremony is to cement the friendship between Uruguay and Japan, as well as between Asia and Latin America. These two far away countries are no longer far away. They are now close neighbors, and one family. Distance will not matter.

After these ceremonies, these 4,200 Japanese ladies will go to 35 countries of North and South America, 120 ladies to each country, and these sisterhood ceremonies will spread all over Latin America. What a wonderful thing. If this is not the true way to promote world peace, then what else is?

Today, the barriers between East and West will melt as two peoples are united as sisters and the ideal of a global family under one parenthood of God is realized. These bonds of love transcend all barriers of language, cultures, nationality, creed, and religion. God meant us to be one family and today we are doing it.

Mr. Secretary, you have been staunchly supporting these sisterhood programs, and now you are here supporting the same cause in the southern cone of Latin America. You have been an inspiration to all of us and we thank you for your coming and speaking to us. Mr. Secretary, we salute you as a champion of the cause of the family and world peace.

Now, ladies and gentlemen, the moment has come. Let us now welcome to the podium, Secretary Walter Hickle.

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