Articles From the July 1994 Unification News


Against All Odds

by Lloyd Hudson

There are many tribal messiahs going back to their hometowns these days to take advantage of the freedom of creativity it offers; but the numbers are few and far between of brothers who will quit their steady job to support their families in order to succeed in their tribal messiah missions.

This is especially true when one's wife is challenged with physical limitations from birth.

Of the many couples in the U.C. worthy of praise and recognition, only a few had the obstacles present in this particular couple's marriage. Not only have they met these obstacles but they have surmounted them. That couple is Rodney and Susan Edwards of Indianapolis, Indiana.

The fact that Rodney now holds the position of I.C.C. director for Indiana is quite noteworthy because, at the ripe old age of 47, he has never held any significant position of authority since he joined in 1973.

The union of Rodney with his wife is commendable for the fact that Susan comes from a Jewish background, and Rodney from an African American heritage. They have amassed major victories in the realm of black/white relationships.

Beyond all family responses of a negative tone, they are faithful to God and very dedicated to fulfilling True Parents' desire in their Tribal Messiah missions.

Rodney and Susan have been very inspired by the guidance of True Children after each speaking engagement. When Kook Jin Nim spoke at Martin University on April 10th of this year, Rodney was the M.C. to a packed hall. His wife Susan brought sixteen of those guests herself. From another event where she invited twelve guests, one of them submitted a paper on the value of Mother's speech which won the grand prize of $500 as a scholarship.

The fact that 28 guests belonged to Susan is a result of her heart and zeal in witnessing for True Children's speaking engagements. This is all in spite of her restricted mobility. Susan doesn't consider her physical impairment a disability. "It is only a challenge!" says Rodney.

Rodney and Susan were matched in '79 and blessed in '82 in Korea. They now have two lovely daughters, Vittoria Rose and Sun Ai Joy, aged 9 and 7 years respectively.

Under the parental guidance of his regional leader, Rev. Jong Bok Hong, and the inspiration of his I.C.C. coordinator, Rev. Purnell Spicer, he has been working more effectively in his I.C.C. capacity.

He is now preaching in established Christian churches and is practically giving straight D.P. lectures.

Recently the family visited Rev. Williams of the LIghthouse Miracle Center in Gary, Indiana. Rodney gave a sermon speaking on reaching and fulfilling the first blessing. The sermon was rooted in and centered on many Bible verses. Rev. Williams and his congregations received the message warmly. This is yet another tribute to their overcoming spirit. Through Rodney's unity with his central figures, preaching in Christian churches is becoming more and more fruitful.

Their elder daughter, Vittoria Rose, was so moved to contribute to and support her father's work that she volunteered to sing a holy song for the church. She chose "The Song of the Young People." The entire congregation was uplifted by her beautiful rendition. In this way, the whole family is working together to help bring victory in their tribal messiah mission.

Finally, in order for Rodney to better fulfill his mission, he sacrificed the security of a substitute teaching job to do a flower stand two days a week. God has blessed them to make more money in those two days than a full week as a substitute teacher.

Their commitment to God and True Parents will surely serve as a foundation for many more victories in the future. The Edwards family is a testimony to the fact that it is possible for a couple to keep the mission in the subject position while raising a family against all odds!


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