The Words The Kwak Family
Jin Bok Lee with his bride Sung Sook Kwak just before the wedding processional.
Second eldest daughter of Rev. and Mrs. C. H. Kwak
When I found out about the matching I was really excited, and although I had sent my photograph, I was wishing I could be at the matching in person. But I remembered that Mrs. Eu said one time: "Even though you are not there, even when Father only has your picture, he knows your spirit."
I felt unqualified and still very young, but I really wanted to get blessed in the first blessing of the second generation. I always prayed, "Heavenly Father, I know that I am unworthy, but I wish I could be one of those couples." I was very nervous about it, but somehow I knew that Father loved me and that I would be among those couples.
About 11:00 at night, while I was in my room at the New Yorker, I got a phone call from my father, congratulating me on just getting matched. I was excited to find out who my spouse was, but I asked him whether my sister Shin Sook had gotten matched. He said she had been matched to Young Joon Kim. I was very glad for her, but then when he said "...and your spouse is Jin Bok Lee [eldest son of Mrs. Mal Sook Lee] for two minutes I couldn't say anything. I was so shocked.
Until that moment I had been praying hard. I was so nervous. Although I had tons of schoolwork to do I couldn't do it at all! I was reading Father's words about the Blessing -- everything that I could find, preparing my mind for it. I really wasn't a hundred percent sure that I would be in this matching, but I felt I had to prepare myself.
In 1984, just before In Jin Nim's and Heung Jin Nim's wedding, the blessed children had been asked to gather, too. We were really nervous, because Father was trying to match Heung Jin Nim and In Jin Nim. At that time Father had said, "A person's face is not important. You have to see all the aspects of a person -- the ears, the forehead, the arms, the feet. They have to be harmonizer."
I had been reading and preparing myself, so the moment I heard my spouse's name, the first thing that came to my mind was, "How is his faith?" Although we both live in Tarrytown, I didn't know him very well. Anyway, I knew that Father knows about us better than we ourselves do.
I didn't answer, so my father got worried and said, "What kind of reaction is that?" I said, "Yes, Father, I'm happy." And I asked him, "Did you bow down in acceptance?" He said yes, he and Jin Bok's mother had already bowed in front of Father. I was so grateful that my father had accepted without even asking me.
After that I immediately lit Heung Jin Nim's candle and prayed. My mind was reeling incredibly. Thirty minutes later my father called me again and said, "You will probably have to come to Korea right away, so you'd better get everything ready." I started worrying because it was time for finals at school [Parson's School of Design]. That night I couldn't sleep until four o'clock in the morning.
I actually got the news before Jin Bok, who was in Tarrytown. I found out that my younger sister had called him right away and told him. Jin Bok is the youngest brother who got matched. Father didn't include anyone born in 1966. He was born in December 1965, so he thought that he might not be included. He was very shocked to hear the news, maybe more so than I was.
The next day, about an hour and a half before my plane left for Korea, Jin Bok came to visit me in my room, wanting to talk. But I still had so much to do to get ready! I couldn't spend much time talking with him, but I told him that I had prayed deeply and that I didn't worry about anything; I was only concerned that he had good faith and that he loved True Parents.
At our engagement, Father said that from now on we shouldn't follow the guidance of our parents, but only the guidance of the True Parents. He said that the couples of the first generation didn't fulfill their responsibility, so from this point he was going to treat us like his own sons and daughters. He was very serious. He has a great expectation of us. He said, "You are the inheritors."
I was born in 1964, during a very difficult time in our church. We were very poor, but I can say confidently that I had quite a smooth life of faith. My parents have to take all the credit for that. As I grow older, I am more and more appreciative always prayed in front of True Parents' candle wearing a white Korean dress. She prayed a lot, especially during the five or six years that we were apart from my father.
I could feel that it was very difficult for my mother to raise six children by herself, especially when we had so little money. In every respect, when I think of what my parents did in their life, I feel deep gratitude.
When we were in Korea my father always had exciting news to share with us about the True Family. He would write us many letters from America and very often he would send us a tape recording, so we could really sense his love and personal care.
Another thing I am extremely thankful for is that my parents have kept a diary from the time they joined the church. It's about four feet high now. My mother was 19 years old when she joined the church and her feelings about Father and Mother and Heavenly Father were so pure. Whenever I read their diary, I cannot...