Chapter 2 The Unification Movement in Korea






1974 - Safeguarding the Unified Front



The year 1974 was the final year of the second seven-year course, and the third year to have the motto Safeguarding the Unified Front. The members, reflecting on the meaning and nature of the seven-year course, began this year with the determination that they would repent, awaken themselves, and harmonize with the providential will. Reverend Moon encouraged the membership, saying:  

"Be aware of the fact that someone who is willing to safeguard the unified from himself receives protection, and also owes a debt, and Heaven is laboring for his sake. Moreover, if were know Heaven is working hard to protect us, from this first hour of the first day of the new year onward we should take the position of subject and have the determination to protect our brother and safeguard our nation horizontally."

From January 8 to 27, Reverend Moon spoke in the final five cities of the 21-cities speaking tour he had begun the previous year. Invited to attend the President's Prayer Breakfast on January 31, he had dialogue with President Richard Nixon. Following this busy start to the year, he left for Britain, returning to Korea via Europe on February 8.

Reverend Moon again flew to the United States on February 12, the fifth day after arriving in Korea, and immediately embarked on a tour of thirty-two cities speaking on the Principle, from February 15 to April 20.

On April 25, following the conclusion of the tour, Reverend Moon returned to Korea. After spending ten days in Korea, he again left for Japan on May 6 to deliver the main address to 1,700 dignitaries at the Japanese Day of Hope Festival at the Empire Hotel on May 7.

On May 9, twenty-two members of the Han-Seon Dance Troupe left for America to perform at the public speeches.

A number of three-day presentations of Principle lectures, under the theme Celebration of Life, were held over a two month period from May 5 to July 19 to consolidate the foundation for the main events to be celebrated in the Autumn. The main lecturer was Bo-hi Pak. Before and after the lectures, music and dance performed by the New Hope Singers International and the Korean Folk Ballet allowed a broader view of the cultural diversity of the Unification movement. The New Hope Singer International were made up of young members of the Unification Church from fourteen nations.

The Second International Leadership Seminar was held for forty days from July 16. From July 22 to 25, six hundred American members gathered on the eastern steps of the Capitol and carried out a prayer and fast to save America from spiritual downfall.

A Day of Hope tour was held in eight cities over a three  month period, from September 17 to December 23, during which Reverend Moon again spoke personally. The program consisted of a banquet held on the first of two evenings with Reverend Moon's speech on the second. The program, like that of the Celebration of Life series, included the exemplary music and dance of the Korean Folk Ballet and the New Hope Singers International.

The first speech was held at Madison Square Garden on September 18, before an audience of 25,000. Fourteen Korean leaders were invited to came in advance and attend this historic speech.

Moreover, Reverend Moon was invited to the speak at the US Congress, and there delivered a special address under the title America in God's Providence.

Reverend Moon, filled with the feeling of a victory having been won at the conclusion of the second seven-year course, made an emotional return to Korea on December 29.

While missionary work was carrying on very actively in the United States, in Korea things were relatively quiet.

Church president Young-whi Kim was guiding the church according to a program of activities, under the motto Safeguarding the Unified Front, that included:

(1) Each person to witness to one person per month

(2) Education of all members

(3) Securing district headquarters nationwide

(4) Emphasis on publications.

Some special activities continued. Among these were the public Principle lectures for clergymen and professors, the mobile witnessing teams, blessed wives witnessing, 100-day training workshops, the Sung Hwa youth cultural lectures, and forty-day witnessing conditions. The mobile team completed its fourth session, and the fifth session began activity on June 10. The twenty-eighth public seminar on the Principle for Protestant clergy was held from November 25 to 27, by which point a total of 1,365 clergy had attended these lectures since their inception.

The Little Angels Arts School, supported by the Korean Cultural Foundation, opened in Neung-dong, Seong-dong-gu, Seoul, on March 5. Its newly constructed and majestic school building was equipped with modern facilities.

In addition, the first international academic conference sponsored by the Professors World Peace Academy was held under the theme "World Peace and Asia" from April 21 to 27, attended by forty-one scholars from Koreans, Japan, and China. A reception for the minister of education was held on the first night of April 21, and an invitational evening for another minister was held on the evening of April 23.

On May 1, automatic changes within the middle leadership came into force. A single person could simultaneously  assume the positions of district church leader, provincial church leader, and provincial VOC director. One notable feature of this restructuring was that Reverend Jong-gu Park, former North Kyungsang Province church leader, was assigned to head the witnessing department which had previously been overseen by leaders of other departments.

Also noteworthy that year was that the II-Sung Construction Company began building A-frame churches. Designed by Elder Duk-moon Um, these churches comprised a main chapel for services of 28 pyung (100 m) and a private residence of 15 pyung (50m). These churches were uniformly built nationwide. (Later the church buildings were increased in size, consisting of an 18 pyung private residence and a 32 pyung chapel.)

Following the consecration of Shintanjin Church in South Chungcheong Province, the first church of this type, on June 10, 1974, the company built a further 188 such churches nationwide by 1976. The era of rented churches thus gave way to a new era of churches that were owned, supported by remarkable blessing from Heaven, and by the united efforts of district members and witnessing team members, not to mention the construction workers, devoting their full energy to the project.

A public statement in support of the activities of the Unification Church was placed in five national newspapers including the Dong-A Ilbo, in the names of ninety-nine professors from many universities. It attracted a great deal of public attention. The majority of the professors, members of the Professors World Peace Academy (PWPA), had taken the opportunity to listen to and research the Principle.

The church leaders who traveled to the United States at the beginning of September 18 Madison Square Garden rally were sent on a world tour by Reverend Moon. They returned to Korea in mid-December.

Notable events this year included:

January 22: Supporting rally in Seoul for Reverend Moon's Watergate declaration.

June 10: Completion of the first A-frame church building.

November 1: Second interfaith soccer tournament sponsored by the Religion Herald.