The Words of the Otomo Family

Mr. Yuji Otomo to Offer Counseling and Seminar at Bay Area Family Church

July 21, 2011

July 27 (Wed)-Aug. 2 (Tue), Mr. Yuji Otomo will be counseling (couple, family, individual) with a Principled and balanced methodology to help us eliminate our root problems (deep.) Interested? SIGN UP NOW with Hisae Mori to reserve a counseling slot (only $40 / hr.) of your choice.

With English translation provided, he will be speaking at BAFC (with interaction, Q and A, PowerPoint, etc.) with us during an initial 3 day (Wed-Fri) Family Counseling seminar and Saturday and Sunday afternoon on the hot topic, "Raising our 2nd Generation Children."

In addition, Mr. Otomo will be meeting with all interested Saturday morning at 8:30 at Coco's Restaurant in Hayward. Get more detailed schedule plus counseling applications at BAFC information table in the lobby this Sunday. For more information, contact David Sato, Masako Thompson, or David Rosenblum.

Report on Mr. Otomo's Visit in NJ
Masako Feddema
Director, Blessed Family Dept. District #3
June 20, 2011

National Level 3 day Seminar on Counseling (May 28 – 30)

Mr. Otomo came to NJ on May 27 (Fri.) and stayed till May 30th (Mon.) to hold a 3 day seminar on Counseling for the Japanese BFD leaders, Kodan and church leaders.

There were 31 participants in total: NJ–16, NY-9, IL-2, MA-1, FL-1, TX-1, and WA-1.

He gave altogether 28 hours of lectures. (Please refer to the attached schedules for the topics of his lectures.)

The content of the seminar was very uplifting and with deep insight; yet he conveyed it in a simple and concrete way so that all the participants could understand him easily. It was also presented with plenty of humor in perfect timing while talking about very serious issues. He made us laugh, yet at the same time made us think deeply and seriously about the issues of blessed families.

Reflections from the participants:

H. T. (Chicago)
The past year I encountered numerous problems with our blessed families. I was shocked to recognize that it would be very hard to find families without problems. While hearing Mr. Otomo's lectures, I was thinking about these families: this is good for this family; this content can be applied to that family, etc. I wish that Mr. Otomo can give this kind of seminar to the blessed families in Chicago.

H.I. (New York)
The real testimonies Mr. Otomo shared from his experiences of taking care of hundreds of Korean-Japanese blessed families were very helpful and insightful. He taught me clearly that only by acquiring True Faith, becoming a true person with original character, and by creating a True Family ourselves can we fulfill our mission in God's Providence. It was an eye-opening experience to me, and I will try my best to practice what I learned during this seminar in my pastoral work.

Y.O. (New Jersey)
I recognized the many mistakes I made in the past when counseling. Mr. Otomo taught me to expand my heartistic capacity first to truly understand the members and their pains. I had the tendency to judge them first using only the traditional Principle view point. I had to change my concept as a soldier on the battlefield completely, and make a strong determination to become a good wife and a good mother in my family. "Take dominion over Time and Space, and serve delicious meals" to create a home: I felt as if I was hit by a sledge hammer because of my ignorance and neglect. I will review the content of the seminar again and again, and will practice it in my daily life and at home diligently. I hope someday I can give a light of hope to many blessed families and to my own family too.

K.E. (Boston)
I am deeply grateful to have attended this 3 day seminar. I learned many things, which I think would be very helpful to many members and families in MA. I recognized how ignorant I was. I will share the content of this seminar with my husband (state leader) and apply it to help our Blessed families. It is very painful to see so many families struggling with family issues. 40–50 % of our community consists of Japanese families. I will do my best to reach out to them and open their hearts to us and our help by utilizing what I learned from this seminar.

H.S. (Washington State)
Mr. Otomo taught us clearly what the important things in our life are: a good relationship between husband and wife, living as a three generation family, and Tribal Messiah Work. Many blessed families including my family have put less priority into these things so far. I hope that we can set our priorities straight and take them as our central mission, and then our lives will be more joyful and successful. I will take the challenge in providing proper counseling in our community. I feel that we are entering into a new era.

H.S. (Texas)
The information provided in this seminar is absolutely necessary for those who are involved with pastoral counseling of any sort in our church. "Ignorance is the shadow of death". I wonder how many people I have hurt or have broken their hearts because of my misjudgment of their situation or inappropriate advice in the past instead of actually helping them. This seminar provided the right knowledge from a psychological view point combined with the Principle, therefore it helped me to sort out and organize my thinking clearly and I reflected upon myself sincerely as a church pastor. I now know clearly which direction I should take.

T.M. (New Jersey)
Thank you very much for these precious three days. Mr. Otomo started the seminar by saying, "There is no problem which we cannot solve. All blessed families can become happy." It gave me hope as it reminded of the first words of the Introduction to the Divine Principle. I felt deeply that I need to start building the Cheon Il Guk in my family and community instead of working like a soldier in the war zone by focusing only on winning the battle. Mr. Otomo made me recognize that the first step to do so is to build a good parent and child relationship. He also taught me that in order to be a good counselor, first I need to be a good person, a good parent, a good wife, and a good neighbor.

S.L. (New Jersey)
The following points are what I learned from the seminar: The essence of being a counselor is to clearly understand the value and position as an original human being. When counseling, we need to guide people to become an original family and original human being. When dealing with sick persons (physically and spiritually), we need to deal with them properly. We should not demand of them what they cannot do. Also, dealing with handicapped or disabled persons, we need to have the right knowledge to properly help them. Without having proper knowledge, the counselor and the client both would be exhausted and would not go anywhere. I repented that I gave advice only from the Principle viewpoint or Words to anybody. I needed to understand each person's situation objectively and clearly and deal with them appropriately.

A.H. (New York)
I did not have the confidence to take care of various problems of our blessed families and church, and my own limitation of being a counselor. I often felt overwhelmed by them without knowing what to do. Mr. Otomo gave me hope. He told us to start with things we can do no matter how small they are. His approach of combination of religion and science made perfect sense to me. "Knowledge is Power" – I felt it deeply in my heart.

K.A. (New Jersey)
I feel it is important for all blessed central families as a Tribal Messiah to know the content of this seminar. We need to have more professional persons like Mr. Otomo in our movement. Also, I would sincerely want this content to be conveyed to Western members since my husband is Western. I hope his new book "Psychology of Tribal Messiah Witnessing" could be translated into English soon. I am determined now to create a good family by starting with cleaning the house and making delicious meals. These three days really changed my concept and way of thinking.

II. Mr. Otomo's Activities in New Jersey (June 2 – 4)

Mr. Otomo went to NY for two days (May 31 and June 1) and came back to NJ on June 2nd. He stayed for three more days. The following is a list of his activities during this time:

1) 12 personal counseling sessions (2-2nd gen, 10-1st gen.)

2) Two public presentations on "Culture of Heart I and II" (June 2nd and 3rd)

3) Meeting with 2nd gen.

4) Meeting with BFD leaders

5) Presentation at the Hilton Garden Inn for Japanese guests

Detailed report of each session as follows:

1) 12 Personal Counseling Sessions: (90 min. session – $40)

Before people come to a counseling session, we ask them to fill out a questionnaire which asks basic information: reasons for coming to the counseling, family information, which needs counseling, anything they did to seek for solution, etc. Also, Mr. Otomo strongly recommends them to read his article on "Pastoral Counseling on Completed Testament Age" (57 pages – Japanese and English) in advance before counseling.

2 – 2nd gen. sisters:

a) Relationship with the spouse and asking advice as to when to start a family

b) Concerns about overall 2nd gen's commitment to the church (how to help them feel connected to our church).

10 – 1st gen. (9 individuals and 1 couple):

a) A Japanese sister with an African husband: He has no job, is mentally unstable, and has 4 small children. She met with Mr. Otomo for the third time. Because of his continued guidance, her situation has improved considerably. The husband attends now vocational training. She understands his condition (a slight Asperger Syndrome and developmental disorder) and she is able to deal with him better.

b) 4 individuals (sisters): They expressed their difficulties in the relationship with their spouse. (One Japanese sister's husband has Asperger Syndrome disorder. He does not understand he needs help.)

c) 4 individuals (sisters): They expressed their difficulties in raising 2nd gen. regarding communicating with them and dealing with their issues properly.

d) 1 couple (Chinese-American husband and Japanese wife with 4 younger children): They were experiencing marital difficulties because of financial difficulties, communication problems, different views of raising children, unhappiness, depression (wife), etc.

2) Two Public Presentations on "Culture of Heart; part I and II": June 2 (Thurs.) and 3rd (Fri.) 7 pm – 9 pm

Both nights were well attended. We had over 120 members. (We charge a small fee of $5 – individual, $10 – family)

Mr. Otomo explained the history of the Korean culture and its differences with the Japanese history and culture. He clarified the reasons why we need to study the Korean culture, people and language. He emphasized the importance of attending the parents to solve family related issues: parents and children relationship, husband and wife relationships, how to relate to in-laws, etc. (Simultaneous translation was provided for the English speaking participants.)

The participants were deeply inspired by his talk, which was followed by Q and A. 1/3rd of the audience were Western members and about 1/5th was 2nd gen. We sold his newly published book "Psychology for Tribal Messiah Work" (Japanese) at the registration table. His DVDs in both English and Japanese sold well. (These DVDs are from his previous presentations in NJ – "Pastoral Counseling in the Completed Testament Age" and "Parenting in the Completed Testament Age".)

Presentations on both nights were video-taped. We will create the DVDs and will make them available to those who could not come to his presentation.

3) Meeting with 2nd gen.

12 2nd gen. participated.

Mr. Otomo started the meeting by asking the 2nd gen. if they had any specific questions.

One brother expressed his difficulties of relating with his father, who has a slight Asperger Syndrome disorder. Mr. Otomo listened and gave him practical advice on how to relate to a person with Asperger Syndrome.

Another brother asked about his friend (BC) who has bipolar disorder. Mr. Otomo advised from both religious and scientific (psychological) aspect how to relate and help.

One sister (blessed) asked what to do about her difficulties in relating to her own parents and parents-in-law. Mr. Otomo explained clearly and practically how to attend the parents: first step; start with offering Kyung-Bae in order to cultivate the heart of attendance, etc. Then, he explained how to experience the 4 great realms of heart in a three generation family. The sister who asked the question was deeply moved and thanked him for his insightful guidance.

4) Meeting with BFD Leaders:

Mr. Otomo met personally with Joe Lenard, who is a main counselor for 2nd gen. Joe was deeply touched by his explanation and understanding of the 2nd gen. and their identity. Joe expressed his desire to learn from him and work with him to take care of our 2nd gen. Mr. Otomo explained the importance for 2nd gen. to learn how to properly attend their parents.

Meeting with Mrs. Claire Haider (Blessed 2nd Gen. Dept.) and Mrs. Christl Brunkhorst (Matching Advisor for 2nd gen.).

They expressed to Mr. Otomo about the necessity of having an infrastructure of taking care of blessed families and network of family counselors or family supporters just like Government provides. It is important receiving training sessions by professionals like Mr. Otomo; this way we can be equipped to help our members.

They requested that if Mr. Otomo could give a seminar to western members too just like his three day Japanese seminar. He replied that if there is a request he could arrange it. He suggested that he can have it as a "Family Counseling Seminar" for two days for blessed central families. He also emphasized the importance of creating a good family by practicing these three points, which he taught during the seminar:

1) Take dominion over the time – Make a rhythm in a family and stick to it.

2) Take dominion over the environment (physical space) – clean the house, make it orderly and tidy so that family members can feel relaxed, comfortable and without stress.

3) Provide delicious meals consistently – importance of having meals together as a family, especially dinner.

5) Presentation at the Hilton Garden Inn (June 4th, 10 am – 12:00 pm)

We had 30 participants: 5 guests and 25 members. The title of the presentation was "How to manage anger and anxiety for better parenting". As this was our first trial to have a meeting for guests, we were nervous if there would be any guests. We had ads for a month in a Japanese free monthly magazine "Enjoy" and a couple of free weekly newspapers such as "Frontline" and "NY Shukan Seikatsu". Leaflets were displayed on the Bulletin Board at the Japanese Super Market "Mitsuwa".

Among our 5 guests was a principal from a Japanese School "Ikuei Gakuen". He could only stay for 1 hour since he had a previous engagement. He looked very interested in the presentation and he took many pictures of the power-point presentation. We are planning to visit him for a follow up with the DVD of this presentation.

We asked all the participants to fill out a survey and the responses from the guests were positive. They were happy to have been invited.

We created a web-site called "NJ Kosodate" which means parenting in NJ. We will put articles about this presentation there and will follow up contacting the guests.

We also got in touch with the editor of a free weekly newspaper "NY Shukan Seikatsu". He and his wife wanted to come to the presentation; however, their children's school had an athletic event on very same day. So, they could not come. But we will be keeping in touch with him and send him the DVD.

Overall Reflection:

This was the third time for Mr. Otomo to come to New Jersey. By this time, he was somewhat familiar with our community and environment. It helped him to recognize our needs and accommodate us accordingly.

He put a lot of effort in to educating us and giving us guidance from early morning to late at night (about 12 hours daily). He was always willing to take care of the members and showed his genuine concern and sincerity for every member he met. I was amazed by his advice combining religion (Principle) and science (Psychology). I came to believe that with this combination we would be able to solve any problems.

His 3 day seminar brought us to a higher level in terms of guiding and helping members. The 16 participants from NJ are all leaders in different fields who have been taking care of members already. I am sure that with what they learned and the information given during these three days, they will be more capable and effective to help their members.

As I mentioned earlier, we are thinking to have a workshop entitled "Family Counseling Seminar" to give every blessed families in our District an opportunity to hear his guidance and education directly for both Japanese and Western families. Since it empowered all 31 leaders this time, I am sure it will empower and equip blessed families to tackle their problems positively and eventually find solutions, or at least improve the current situation they are in.

We are deeply grateful for Mr. Otomo's commitment and willingness to come to America to take care of blessed families in solving various family issues. He has helped many Japanese families already, so I am sure his guidance and advice would be equally helpful and useful to the Western community too since they are based on the Principle.

I was also pleasantly surprised to recognize that his content of teaching synchronizes with the teachings of In Jin Nim through her weekly sermon. The Sunday Service Mr. Otomo attended on June 5th, In Jin Nim addressed the importance of attending the parents for younger people in the audience.

We are deeply grateful to In Jin Nim for her clear understanding of the value and importance of Mr. Otomo's work towards blessed families. Thank you, In Jin Nim, for approving the work of Mr. Otomo and allowing us to invite him again and again to the United States. Without her recognition, it would be impossible to have this ministry for Japanese members.

Lastly, I would like to convey our deepest gratitude to Mrs. Hiromi Stephens, who has been working tirelessly with total dedication in guiding and leading the Japanese blessed families in the United States. As it happened to be her 60th birthday (May 30) – last day of our seminar, we celebrated her birthday with a sweet delicious cake and all the cheers from enthusiastic participants. May God bless her, her family and her mission!

With sincere gratitude,

Masako Feddema
Blessed Family Department (District 3) 

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