Unification News For April 1996
Blessed Children's Workshops-Cultivating the Hope for the Future
by Edy Iversen-Palm Court, FL
Just days before the new year, my eight-year-old son David participated in a very exciting blessed children's workshop in central Florida.
Our inspired state leader, Mr. George Beutl, along with several wonderful sisters from Miami, organized this delightful event, with special help from Charles Spacek and his wife Mitsuko. They generously provided their home for the invasion of over 40 eight- to twelve-year- olds from across the state. He also provided us with an excellent workshop setting, a community center in a park by his home near a lake, which is where all the activities were held.
For three days the children participated in a number of planned activities which included fishing, sports, Divine Principle and morning services, games, skits, heavenly competitions with prizes and sleeping bumper to bumper "Boonville-style" at Charles' house.
The highlight of the event for our family was being able to bring my son's best friend Bavik Patel to the workshop. His parents are devout Hindus and therefore he felt quite at home in a spiritual atmosphere with all the brothers and sisters. He testified afterward that it was the "best experience of his life" and he was able to develop new relationships with other children from the Unification community besides my son. Also, he caught his first fish, one of 40 caught by the children, which was cause for great celebration by all.
Personally, the most inspiring aspect of the workshop was watching while the group leaders were able to bring out the innocence and beautiful original hearts and minds of these precious children. Every day our children get inundated and corrupted by influences in the public schools, the media and their non-blessed peer groups and friends.
Recently in desperation I asked our city leader's wife, Barbara Sapp, how she managed to have such excellent children. She insisted it was the influence of the blessed children's workshop and the relationship that was made among the children which helped them to sustain themselves against peer pressure in school and remain pure.
If you are waiting for your region to have a regional workshop, don't wait! Blessed children are desperately in need of heavenly companionship and relationships. Especially, since we are spread out in our hometowns, and are sometimes not so close to regular church centers, the need is even greater. Statewide and citywide workshops can give our children the strength and support they need to overcome the pressures of the fallen world.
As parents we must insure we are truly "cultivating the hope for the future," our beautiful blessed children. Many thanks to group leaders Carol Miyazaki, Barbara Masuyama, Joe Gonzales, Jan Breslin and Christine Okano, who lovingly organized the cooking, and to all assistants and parents who willingly participated in making this workshop an unequivocal success.
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