The Words of the Jenkins Family
North Carolina Is On The Move
January 27, 2004
Thank you for your prayers. True Parents birthday celebration was truly magnificent. Dr. Antonio Betancourt, Archbishop Stallings and myself joined our Ambassador for Peace Mrs. Carolyn Sampson for a great event honoring Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and giving a Middle East Peace Initiative Briefing in North Carolina. Thanks to John and Sharon Pace, Rev. Burgi Hutcherson and Rev. Tim Davis. It was a great event.
In addition Ms. Michelle Meyers came and did a Service for Peace workshop for youth. It was excellent.
Here are the reports.
Report for "Ambassador for Peace" Conference and MLK, Jr. Taskforce Program
January 17th, Cary, NC
By Rev. Burgi Hutcherson
As part of the Dream fest 2004 and the celebrations of MLK, Jr. Mrs. Carolyn Sampson, President of the MLK Taskforce of Cary, NC and Ambassador for Peace herself since 2 years, organized an Ambassador for Peace Conference on Saturday January 17th in the Greenwood Forest Baptist Church in Cary, NC. The theme of the conference was: "An Urgent Call For Reflection, Hope, and Action" - An Interfaith Summit of national, state and community leaders focusing on principles leading toward a peaceful future! She had the program carefully thought out and spent many months preparing for it. It was the fulfillment of a longtime dream of Mrs. Carolyn Sampson. This dream was awakened in one of our Ambassador for Peace conferences in Hawaii at 2002, where she was able to attend. Filled with the vision of True Father she brought together leaders of faith, politics, media, education and art to join together in a one-day celebration in her hometown of Cary, NC. The highlights of the celebrations were the "Ambassador for Peace" conference and a simultaneous joint program with MLK and "Service for Peace". Michelle Myers and Linda Brewer led the "Service for Peace" conference. There were 24 2nd generation youth, 3 youth guests and 2 adults in attendance.
The "Ambassador for Peace" Conference started in the morning at 9 am and went till 5pm that day. Rev. John Pace took the stage and gave excerpts of the speech from Dr. Chang Shik Yang, Chairman of the IIFWP of North America: "Ambassadors for Peace and America's Role in the World". He also talked about the MEPI. Then Mr. Antonio Betancourt, Secretary General of IIFWP of North America spoke and gave the new power point presentation about "American Leadership and International Cooperation". About 30 guest and about 20 FFWPU members were present at that time in the sanctuary. While Antonio Betancourt was still delivering his message, Rev. Michael Jenkins walked into the sanctuary and joined the conference. He had just arrived from Washington DC. Antonio Betoncourt called Rev. Jenkins to the stage at the conclusion of his lecture and Rev. Jenkins transformed everyone and gave a lot of hope. He gave a powerful speech about Martin Luther King, Jr., the work of the Ambassador for Peace, ACLC, and the activities of reconciliation in the Middle East. He also understood how to comfort the heart of the organizer, Mrs. Carolyn Sampson, who had gone through a lot of struggles and disappointments due to last minute cancellations and delayed arrivals of key speakers. Tears were filling her eyes while he was talking. His deliverance was able to heal her heart from all her burdens, which she went through while preparing for the event.
Before dismissing for the lunch break everyone was invited to take part of a toast to peace. At that time Rev. and Mrs. Winfrey came in and joined the program.
During the lunch break Rev. Jenkins lifted the Winfrey family up. It was wonderful to see the renewal of a strong friendship between Rev. Jenkins and Rev. Winfrey. I hope it brought some healing and better understanding to the Winfrey family. Also Rev. Foy and his son, and Evangelist Marsha Bullock joined the same table. We blessed about 80 more people at that time.
In the afternoon some significant political leaders joined the program. The attendance of the conference increased to about 110 people. Amongst the leaders were Congressman David Price, Cary Councilwoman Julie Robison and some others. Also Archbishop Augustus Stallings arrived in the afternoon. He was the guest of Honor for the celebrations. He made it just on time to receive the keys for the city of Cary. Archbishop Stallings also met one of his childhood teachers, Father Wall - a catholic priest.
The event concluded with the appointing of 5 new Ambassadors for Peace. Mr. Peter Brown, the Washington, DC Regional Director and Virginia Chairman of the American Family Coalition and Mrs. Sharon Pace, NC Chairman of the American Family Coalition and Vice President of the MLK, Jr. Task force of Cary, NC gave the certificates to the newly appointed Ambassadors for Peace.
Following the conference was a VIP reception at the Page - Walker Arts & History Center. A new group of about 120 people gathered and Archbishop Stallings addressed the group. Wonderful food was served, which Mrs. Sharon Pace in her diligent efforts had gathered from different establishments, which donated it to the event. Our "Service for Peace" youth helped with the preparations of the nice buffet and Mrs. Gail Davis donated wonderfully made flower arrangements.
The day was a great success. Mrs. Carolyn Sampson did well in bringing together different leaders for better understanding and peace and to educate them in the principles of reconciliation and love. Thank you Caroline for a job well done! Thank you also to our AFC leader Mrs. Sharon Pace for the uncounted hours spend in support of the program. Also all the other volunteers and sponsors, especially our "Service for Peace" youth, helping with registration and food. And foremost thank you to Rev. Jenkins, Archbishop Stallings and Mr. Antonio Betancourt for supporting us in our event.
We are planning to have another Ambassador for Peace event in the church of Bishop Willie Davis, Jr. on January 28th at 7 pm in Winston-Salem.
Ecumenical Observance Good Shepherd United Church of Christ and First United Church of Christ
On Sunday, Jan. 18th at 4 pm - and part of Dream fest 2004 - a joint service was held. Archbishop Augustus Stallings was also the guest speaker. It was a wonderful service and his message of hope and encouragement for action was well received. The organizers were very interested to invite him back for deeper education and lectures.
Ambassadors for Peace Conference
Respectfully submitted: Arthur K. Lamson, Jr.
It is not simple to report all the content of this event - I will just start at the beginning and go from there. A couple of days before Christmas, while reading my morning News and Observer I found in the local news section: "Wish Lists" published by area Non-Profit organizations. Under the Martin Luther King, Jr. Taskforce of Cary were many requests for help. The one that caught my eye was for someone to pick up the costs for printing and copying program materials for the "Ambassador for Peace" and "Service for Peace" conferences to be held in Cary as a part of the Martin Luther King, Jr. DREAMFEST 2004.
Recognizing these organizations as Unificationist and that they were being sponsored by a local and well recognized non -Unificationist organization really caught my attention and I responded that IRFF-NC would like to do so.
As I got involved with this project, I realized that the head of MLK Taskforce in Cary was headed by a very determined and committed individual named Carolyn Sampson. I also found that Sharon Pace, our NC AFC director had been working with Carolyn for many years, actually, the whole Pace Family has. Over the years, Carolyn had been exposed to the Ambassador for Peace and Service for Peace programs and had been greatly inspired. She is inspired by the concepts themselves but also with a vision and strong desire to see these programs become established in her local area and State.
Carolyn worked for many months to plan these events as part of the 2004 MLK Jr. Birthday celebration in the town of Cary, NC. It was her determined effort that included our organizations as day long programs within than event.
Many speakers were lined up, and had committed to be here. The night before was extremely stressful as Carolyn received word that featured speakers were canceling out. It seemed that even Bishop Stallings, the Event's guest of honor was not coming. We all were a little nervous about the next day…
Saturday morning's program started out sort of off base with the absence of the first speaker and the uncertainty about the arrival of Bishop Stallings. I could see in Carolyn's face a strong sense of determination and faith, not defeat. Then John Pace and Antonio Betancourt stepped up to the plate with wonderful presentations including the new PowerPoint! Just as Antonio was finishing the PowerPoint, in walks Rev. Michael Jenkins. Rev. Michael Jenkins took the microphone on cue and, just like that, the victory was won! Holy wine was served as a toast and Rev. Jenkins gave the Blessing to all.
After such a great morning session, the afternoon session had to be great. We had about 70 more people show up and guests included NC Congressman David Price, who acknowledged Ambassadors for Peace and commended their work; Cary Town Council Women Julie Robertson and Marla Dorrel who presented greetings on behalf of Cary's Mayor; and also Bishop Stallings, who arrived just in time to receive an Honorarium , the symbolic "key" to the Town, and have a reunion with one of his former seminary teachers Father Wall. Four individuals were recognized and presented certificates as Ambassadors for Peace at the end of the Conference.
About 100 people participated at one time or another during the day and a simultaneous Service for Peace Conference was going on in an adjacent building. Bishop Stallings, as the Event Guest of Honor participates in many other events through Monday.
Ambassadors for Peace, American Family Coalition, Service for Peace, American Clergy Leadership Conference, Interreligious International Federation for World Peace, Women's Federation for World Peace and International Relief Friendship Foundation were among the organizations acknowledged by the Taskforce for the MKLJr. Dreamfest 2004 Event of which the Ambassador for Peace Conference was a part.
"Service for Peace" Conference
By Bob Huneycutt
In the days leading up to the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, the MLK, Jr. Task Force of Cary, NC and the American Family Coalition co-sponsored a number of programs celebrating the life of this great man. The programs included a music festival called One Song, an Ambassadors for Peace convention, a Service for Peace seminar for the second generation, a speech by Archbishop George Stallings, and a march in the capitol city, Raleigh.
AFC leader Sharon Pace has been collaborating with MLK Task Force leader Carolyn Sampson on numerous projects over several years. Sampson, a Mormon and restless community activist, attended the Ambassadors for Peace conference in Hawaii. Surprise guests at the conference included Rev. Michael Jenkins; Rev. John Winfrey, a Baptist minister and important ACLC leader who traveled recently to Israel, and US congressman David Price. Congressman Price attended in part because of Pace's daughter Shawna who relentlessly called his office and would not take 'no' for an answer.
Michelle Myers explained to 30 second generation and other interested young people about the Service for Peace program, and showed a video about SFP and a video about volunteerism in a small African village. Renee, an expert on diversity training, explained how to avoid prejudices.
A personal note: Carolyn Sampson had asked me to fill in with a song for a dancer who did not show up, and as I had not prepared anything in particular, I played 'Let It Be'. One woman then requested 'My Sweet Lord', but I could not figure it out on the spur of the moment. Talking a little later with John Pace, we realized that this woman was with three other women from the ISHKON (Hare Krishna) Temple in Hillsborough. 'My Sweet Lord' was written by George Harrison, a devotee of Swami Prabhupada, and includes the lyrics "Hare Krishna, Hare Rama". These sisters just wanted to be a part of the program, and it made me regret that I didn't know the song. It also helped me realize something about religious diversity. Dr. Martin Luther King was inspired by and followed the example of Mahatma Gandhi in non-violence and civil disobedience. Gandhi's picture hung in Dr. King's office. Yet many Christians believe that Gandhi, a Hindu, is in hell.
Even theology, if it creates walls between people, can be considered to be going in the direction opposite to where God is moving.
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