Unification News for June 2002

International Leadership Seminar in Croatia

by Krunoslav Petric

In the Hotel Opera, Zagreb, capital of Croatia, a leadership seminar was held May 13, 2002 exploring the theme, "Renewing the Nation: Exploration of Principles and Practices that Strengthen the Families, Educate our Youth and Rebuild our Societies," sponsored by the Interreligious and International Federation for World Peace.

From the total of 130 participants that attended the seminar, 110 dignitaries were from the fields of education, politics, religion, academia and NGOs. In addition there was a group of participants from Bosnia and Herzegovina, and a group of participants from Slovenia.

The opening greeting of the Seminar was given by Prof. Dr. Josip Milat, Assistant Minister from the Croatian Ministry of Education and Sport, who emphasized the importance of this theme and expressed best wishes for a successful seminar.

The honorable guests and lecturers at the seminar were: Rev. Dr. Chung Hwan Kwak, Chairman of the IIFWP, Rev. Kwang Kee Sa, President of IIFWP Europe, Dr. Thomas Walsh, General Secretary of IIFWP and Mr. Massimo Trombin, International Director of the International Relief Friendship Foundation.

The program of lectures addressed the issues of family values, marriage, blessing, character and spiritual education, social service and HIV/AIDS prevention, all with clear guidance on how to build a world culture of peace.

The audience responded very well and was especially moved by the presentation of Rev. Kwak, who lectured about the value of family, culminating with the marriage blessing ceremony through which 10 couples among the participants and 42 married individuals pledged loyalty to their spouse and rededicated their marriages in an effort to create ideal families and world peace.

At the closing banquet participants shared very positive and optimistic reflections. Seven of the dignitaries were awarded the honorable title of "Ambassadors for Peace."

Many participants concluded that in their daily lives, they all have to try harder to practice a lifestyle proposed and lived by Rev. Moon.

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