The Words of the Kaufmann Family
The Convocation of World Leaders World Culture and Sports Festival 2000
Technically the convocation of the WCSF had its formal start at the opening banquet. Conference events began the following morning.
Fifteen distinct, world peace organizations co-sponsored the convocation; all founded and maintained by the True Parents. The Family Federation for World Peace (FFWPUI), The Federation for World Peace (FWP), the Federations of Peninsular, Island, and Continental Federations, The International Conference on the Unity of the Sciences (ICUS), The International Relief and Friendship Foundation (IRFF), The Inter-Religious Federation for World Peace (IRFWP), The Literary Federation for World Peace, The Martial Arts Federation for World Peace, The Professors World Peace Academy (PWPA), The Religious Youth Service (RYS), Unification Thought Institute (UTI), The Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP), The World Media Association (WMA), The World University Federation (WUF), and the Youth Federation for World Peace (YFWP).
All fifteen held conferences within the two day schedule of the WCSF. On average, and virtually across the board, each sponsoring organization convened two 90 minute sessions dedicated to the conference theme of their choice. The exception this time was PWPA, and ICUS, who held full schedules throughout the entire time available for the Convocation.
Prior to the individual conferences of the sponsoring organizations, an official opening plenary took place. United States Vice President Dan Quayle, British Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath, Ugandan Vice President Dr. Specioza Wandira Kazibwe, and IIFWP Chairman Reverend Dr. Chung Hwan Kwak were the speakers at this session.
The Inter Religious Federation hosted sessions with the theme: "The Future of Religion at the Dawn of the 21st Century: Promise and Problems." This program was designed to allow presentations from various, representative, religions. This time they were: Catholic (Professor Hugo Meynel, University of Calgary), Buddhist (Professor Kosen Nishyama, Tohuku College of Social Welfare), Jewish (Professor Richard Rubenstein, University of Bridgeport), Unificationist (Professor Thomas Selover, University of Saskatchewan), and Muslim (Professor Sulayman Nyang, Howard University).
The section was well attended and drew a good deal of interest and participation. Dr. Meynel spoke of the elements of genuine dialogue and interfaith, particularly the requisite intellectual rigors. Dr. Nishyama concentrated in part on the environment, as well as such social issues as care for the poor. Dr. Rubenstein spoke of classical challenges to modernity, as well as the religious response often called ‘fundamentalism.’ Dr. Selover spoke of family patterns as the root of genuine religious form and instruction, and Professor Nyang spoke of the genre’s of discourse, and the malleable and flexible qualities which allow the great traditions to persist and to remain indispensable and uniquely qualified to respond to a an inner and eternal side of being human.
In addition to the formal presentations from the five panelists listed above, all IRFWP participants prepared papers and statements on the conference theme. Following the panel presentations of the opening session, participants broke out into dialogue groups of 8 - 10 in which they introduced the content of their respective writing and reflections on the issue.
I am sure that all groups would have interesting and exciting information to report about the mini-conferences which occurred under the WCSF in these two days.
The Convocation closed officially following the Sunday morning sessions at 11:30 am. From there participants prepared for a day of different activity.
Following an early lunch all Convocation participants boarded buses headed for Seoul’s Olympic Stadium. Once again, as with the year before, the weather proved miraculously warm. Now two years in a row, and this year warmer than the last really must have people wondering, and must have opponents of True Parents wondering whether it might be a good time to retire.
Our VIP guests arrived to a full stadium, with 40 - 50,000 couples and the rest guests, friends, and family. The ceremony was crisp, beautiful, and beautifully executed. Like clock-work Dr. Bo Hi Pak led the event through precisely 90 minutes of scheduled procedure and performance.
Prior to the Blessing of True Parents, the millions of couples the world over received prayers of Blessing from 10 great leaders from the world religions.
After this glorious show of profound inter-religious harmony, and genuine cooperation to bring God’s Blessings to the Blessed couples, Mother and Father descended the regal stairwell and conducted the sacred rituals to bestow the Blessing and change of blood lineage upon the Blessed couples.
It was a memorable and moving day, not only for those who will mark this day as the start of the Kingdom of God through their couple, but even for all the guests and friends who could witness this glorious event.
Convocation guests were afforded the chance to return to their hotel rooms so that they could change and prepare themselves for the closing banquet at the Little Angels’ School
The WCSF 2000 Commemorative Exhibition
As we entered the Little Angels’ School we were astounded to discover that the entire school had been converted into a museum of genuine, superior quality and sense of curatorship. The displays covered three floors, and did a truly impressive job of captivating the viewer, and communicating at least in small part the utterly astonishing career and life work of Father and the True Parents.
The brochure of the exhibition described its purpose in this way:
In commemoration of Reverend Moon’s 80th birthday and the 2000 World Culture and Sports Festival, and exhibition of photographs and other items has been prepared, illustrating Reverend Moon’s life course of suffering and victory, and his accomplishments
Although we have done our best to capture the essence of his life and work... it is impossible to do justice to a man of his depth and breadth in the time and space available.
This is humble, and of course accurate. One cannot adequately introduce Father and True Parents no matter how much time one has, but it must be said that the responsible figures for this exhibit did a sterling job, and produced an exhibition which could occupy a visitor for hours and hours.
Included in this sudden museum was an Exhibition of Antique Pottery and Classical Korean Paintings. This too was stunning. Apparently Sun Moon University was the recent recipient of a previously privately owned cache of rare, ancient, Korean art treasure in both painting, and pottery and sculpture.
Guests at the school could only stand in awe of the range of Father’s and True Parents’ world and life.
The Closing Banquet
The Closing Banquet proved to be an extremely full event, with a number of important moments and events taking place. There were traditional activities including the presentation of flowers, and the cake cutting (of perhaps the tallest cake ever! – so high that Mother and Father had to mount a small ladder to light and blow out the candles way up top!)
The meal began with the invocation from Minister Benjamin Muhammad from the Nation of Islam. After dinner there were a number of presentations and awards prior to the Founders Address. This time Father presented the talk entitled, "Everybody Wants True Love," thus completing a triptych of "birthday" speeches which will serve as an eternal foundation for the future world.
What might have been a reasonable and appropriate end to the evening’s activities proved to be almost a beginning! After Father’s speech Pastor T.L. Barrett of the Church of God in Christ in Chicago, USA was then invited up to read the conference "resolution." Pastor Barrett read with great zeal and persuasiveness, point by point, and in so doing, created the opportunity for Master of Ceremonies, Mr. Neil Salonen (President of the University of Bridgeport) to invite Father and Mother to the stage to introduce the founding of two new organizations, namely The Family House of Cosmic Peace and Unification, and The Cosmic True Family Federation. As these were introduced, Father painted the founding calligraphy for each organization. The over 2,000 guests were invited to sign the declaration of support for these federations at they left the Little Angels’ School at the close of the program.
Once these organizations were founded and the grandeur of this way of closing the Convocation of World Leaders of the World Culture and Sports Federation was completed, those in attendance were treated to a magnificent program of entertainment. The centerpiece of the program was the breathtaking repertoire of the Little Angels, who have uplifted and inspired everyone from the least of us to Kings and Queens for all the decades of their existence since their founding by Father.
I believe that we as a movement, by the grace of God, were able to make an offering to Father on his 80th birthday that was encouraging and pleasing to True Parents.
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