The Words of Won Pil Kim
Whenever I think back on the road Father Moon has trodden over the years, tears well up in my eyes in spite of myself. Please understand; for me, crying gives me a sense of relief, yet Father, even though he may so desire, is not always able to cry. One who can cry is far more fortunate than one who must hold back his tears. God Himself is witness to how Father has borne in silence all manner of hardship and suffering, and He must have shed a bucketful of tears over his suffering. Father could have shed a bucketful of tears as well. But he never, never lets his tears be seen in our presence. Someday when we, his sons and daughters, understand both God and Father better, when we come to the realization that we the childish ones let them both suffer for us, and when we repent of our failing and give a heart-rending cry, then I feel sure that Father Moon, seeing our bloody tears, will cry with us to his heart's content.
Each time we face difficulties, we rush to Father in hopes that he will take care of them for us; every time we suffer in our hearts we go over to him, hoping that he will soothe our suffering hearts. Since we are like this, like immature children, then how could Father afford to shed his tears in our presence? When we are in his presence, we unmistakably feel his strength, cheerfulness and hope; yet he must suffer just like anyone else when he is insulted and harassed by persecutors; he is bound to be exhausted after working so unremittingly and relentlessly for so long.
That is why if we fervently pray to God that we may grow up to understand His heart, His love, and our True Parents' heart and love, then God reveals to us that His heart is dark black and Father's heart is full of lamentation. When you truly understand the Will of Heaven and the profound meaning of God's dispensation, it be comes next to impossible for you, while witnessing to people of the world about this, to show them how long you have suffered through persecution or how terribly tired you are. No doubt you'll do your very best to show them only your joyful heart, your sense of hope, and the blessings to come. You'll be aware that you do this, knowing that this is the only way to induce these people to listen to you. When you understand this problem you also understand and appreciate Father's delicate situation. Knowing something of this, I now propose to tell you the road he has walked over the years.
It was in July, 1946 in Pyung Yang, North Korea, that I had the good fortune to meet with Father for the first time. He was then 27 years old (in Korean calculation) that is to say, 26 years old (in American). After almost four decades of Japanese oppression, Korea was liberated in 1945 right after World War II by America and her allies. Soon thereafter, Korea was divided along the 38th parallel, with the Russian army occupying the North and American troops in the southern half of the peninsula. For this reason it was very difficult for the Korean people to cross this line in either direction.
At that time it had been two months since Father's first wife had given birth to their first child. Food then was very scarce, and one day Father went to a remote village in the countryside to get some food for his family. It was then that he received Heaven's command to proceed to the North and spread God's Word there. In spite of the watchful eyes from both sides of the 38th parallel, Father Moon managed to cross on June 6, 1946. 1 met him a month later. It happened this way: he returned from Mt. Sung San (a sacred mountain) near Pyongyang, where he had been praying to God. That very same day Father Moon found me, so to speak. By the way, Mt. Sung San was very famous because many holy men went up there to offer their prayers.
A sister of a certain distinguished man in Pyongyang was afflicted with an incurable disease. Father prayed for her daily and then she began to recover. One night she had a dream in which Father appeared and wrote a Chinese character or word that looks like this ___. But in the dream he never finished the last three strokes to complete it. The meaning of this dream is this: no matter how much and how long Father Moon prayed for her, she must do her own portion of responsibility (5%) if she was to be cured completely. This afflicted woman, by the way, was none other than Mr. Chang Ho Ahn's1 younger sister.
Around this time, Father's church was simply the home of a certain couple. For a long time, this couple had been leading a very spiritual life, and for this purpose they were living apart, seeking the way of true faith. Father Moon found them and soon began to hold religious services in their home.
To understand this couple we must go back several years, to when the Japanese forced Korean Christians to bow respectfully to the East (the seat of the Japanese Imperial Throne in Tokyo) before each religious service. For this reason countless Christians in Korea who had much integrity stopped going to the conventional churches and started their own prayer meetings in private homes. It was only after World War II came to an end that these dedicated and sincere Korean Christians went back to join their brethren in the regular churches.
Now the history of Korean Christianity is only about one hundred years old, but Korea happens to be a land where the idea of the Second Coming is traditionally very strong. Because of this belief there were at that time a number of groups who upon receiving revelation from the spirit world, were hard at work laying the foundation to receive the Lord of the Second Advent. Many Koreans who had communication with the spirit world had testified time and again that Pyongyang was the Second Jerusalem. Christianity had first reached the northern region of Korea where Father was born, and in that region Christianity had flourished with Pyongyang at its center.
Vestiges of old-fashioned (or feudalistic) ways were still very apparent in Korea at that time, and because many who believed that women should not go to school or spend much time outside their homes, old women and housewives were practically illiterate. A large portion of them wanted to read the Bible but couldn't. But some of them, with the grace of God, managed to learn to read the Bible anyway. For instance, it was not socially acceptable for a female to cut across the street in front of a man. After a woman married she was not supposed to talk freely with her husband's family members; she could only eat the leftovers from the table where they had already eaten. Romance between young people was unheard of then, and every marriage was arranged by the person's parents. I mention these things to you because you will find it easier to understand Father if you know this social background.
The faith of the Korean Christians at this time was so ardent and strong that their own copies of the Bible wore out; the square corners of the book became round and the binding became loose. They could sing any hymn by heart with all its verses, even if there were six or eight of them without the hymnal. As a matter of fact, when the hymn number was given they could sing the song without opening the hymn book. I saw Father's copy of the Bible with my own eyes and this is how it looked: after it had been read countless times, from Genesis in the Old Testament to Revelations in the New Testament, there was hardly a single line that had not been marked or underlined. Scribblings of all kinds covered every inch of space in the margins of each page.
After many years of prayer, either on a mountainside or at home, some Korean believers began to receive special messages (revelations) from the spirit world. The substance of these revelations was markedly different from what traditional Christian ministers had taught from the pulpit. In America, too, you are told, I suppose, to believe and accept what ministers preach in the churches. In the case of Korean churches, however, the believers were taught to look up to their ministers almost as they would to God, and needless to say, to hold on to the sermons and preaching as they would do to their own lives. Usually ministers of Christian churches have taught that the cross that Jesus bore was the cross that was to save all mankind; that Jesus was born, providentially speaking, to be crucified on the cross.
But these new revelations taught the believers that Jesus did not come only to be crucified on the cross. And this wasn't all. They also received that the fundamental question of man's sin should be understood in a radically different light. In other words, people began to receive some of the teachings of our Divine Principle as new revelation. Normally, a revelation from above removes doubt from our hearts, but since this new disclosure openly conflicted with the teachings of other Christian ministers, some people were in a quandary as to which direction they should take and what to believe. But the country of Korea was now liberated, guaranteeing the freedom of faith and worship, so that the Christians who had prayed at home or in the mountains now decided to return to their respective churches.
After years of absence from their churches, these believers went straight to their ministers with questions about these new revelations they had gotten from Heaven. But all the ministers, without exception, warned them saying: "What you are receiving is all wrong! They are not teachings from Heaven but misleading tricks played on you by false gods. So be careful!" Even today most traditional Christian churches still find it difficult to understand, let alone accept, this new message. How much more so, indeed, for the Christians of that period!
Those believers, who had hoped that their ministers would explain the revelations in plain language, heard an entirely unexpected and different line of argument. Therefore, they had no choice but to return home with heavy hearts and pray harder than ever. Then Heaven revealed to them that those ministers were badly mistaken. Now, these early Christians, of course, believed in the new revelations in their hearts, but they could not understand them by themselves, by studying the Bible on their own. Under these circumstances, they were earnestly searching for a new teacher who could explain to them this new revelation. It was at this moment that Father arrived in North Korea.
Soon Father Moon's reputation spread far and wide it was said that he offered church services in Truth and Spirit. Somehow the word got out that this new Teacher was a young man who had come from South Korea. By now these truth seekers I have been telling you about heard of Father's reputation and as they also wished to dispel the doubt in their hearts, they began to flock to him in droves.
Let me explain, those who received the revelations from the spirit world had grown up for the most part under adverse conditions that the old feudalistic society had forced on them. But they were precisely the kind of people who were always ready and able to give their lives for the sake of truth. So the persecution they received meant little or nothing to them.
When I first met Father he taught us from the book of Romans in the New Testament for two weeks. Being the month of July in Korea it was very hot, and what made matters worse, our little church was just a tiny cubbyhole, 10' by 10' perhaps, and always this place was packed like sardines in a can, with all of us raptly listening to Father. Imagine the dynamic energy that he had at the age of 27! He always wore the traditional Korean robe, and after each session, he took it off and squeezed it out because it was dripping wet from large drops of sweat. You might say, "Of course, it was summer." But even in the winter when he wore his cotton-padded robe, it was also soaked and dripping wet after he spoke to us. Once he began to preach, nobody knew when he would ever end or on what subject he would speak. Unless the congregation had to leave or go somewhere on business, Father Moon kept on teaching without stopping.
It may seem to you here in America that Father's morning service is too long, but when I came to this country I was surprised to find out how short his services had become. In Korea it was not uncommon for him to speak eight hours at a stretch. You American members might hear him speak only two or three hours, and half that time is spent in translation. Well, Father used to give speeches without an interpreter, of course, for six or more hours.
What was most extraordinary about his speeches was that those early members, after listening to him, became inspired and began receiving messages from the spirit world; others would prophesy or "speak in tongues." There were still others who could interpret those strange tongues! And there were some whose whole bodies and heads shook and bobbed sideways.
Several years later, when Father and I went to South Korea, we found that their heads also shook and bobbed up and down. Here is what happened: some people's hands would uncontrollably shake; others, overjoyed, would dance wildly. Their bodies might be stationary, but they danced with arms flinging. Occasionally, curiosity seekers dropped into the church, people who had a "chip on their shoulders," so to speak. While they sat in the congregation, certain believers, with their eyes tightly closed, would weave their way to those visitors without bumping into anyone, and then they would give them a sharp slap on the back. After that, those curiosity seekers would repent and cry their hearts out. In this kind of spiritual atmosphere faith caught fire and spread.
Some people felt the heat of burning fire in their shoulders; for others, fire seemed to penetrate their chests, making them feel warm and peaceful in their hearts. Sometimes the "spirit" came to some who had prayed for a long time in a prostrate position, then they would levitate off the floor. When some received the spiritual fire, their hands got burnt. When this kind of "fire" catches hold of you, you have no control over your reaction.
People who have this psychic-spiritual ability and who are capable of communicating with the spirit world have one distinctive characteristic in common: an unfathomable stubbornness. They "clash" with each other; they cannot get along with one another. One thing about Father Moon is that even though he tends to speak a good deal in public, he is usually reticent and quiet in private. But when he speaks he has the ability to evoke this "spirit reaction" in others. Of course, you cannot imagine such things now, but at that time the spiritual phenomena were by no means quiet and tranquil. When you are engulfed with sheer joy, can you keep yourself still? You have to move around and give shouts of joy, and your feet tap on the floor rhythmically. I have sometimes seen the same thing happen to a lucky contestant on a TV game show who wins a prize. In a moment like that no one seems to be ashamed of his emotions, irrespective of age.
Living joyfully in the grace of God, you come to understand the heart of Heaven which you had failed to know before. This is the very moment when you repent and cry your heart out in relief and joy! Often you will cry deeply from your heart. Then you feel peaceful and joyful and you feel like singing and dancing. Now you can visualize in your mind's eye how boisterous the religious services in our church were at that time. These spiritual experiences could cure chronic afflictions of long standing. And, of course, Father made clear the meaning of the Bible from the standpoint of the Divine Principle, with the result that every one in the congregation became joyful and an overwhelming sense of confidence descended upon them all. The spirit world truly brought "glad tidings" to them; they believed that this man, standing before them, was the One, the Promised One!
Some people were told by the spirit world to go and meet a young Teacher from the South; others were told to go to a certain place and they would see the Lord of the Second Advent. Eventually all came to Father Moon to tell him why and how they "heard" of him. On every occasion when his followers were gathered together, Father would lead them in hymns and prayers, give sermons, then more hymns and prayers, from morning to night. Even after the services were over, he did not want the congregation to go home. And they too, preferred to stay on where they were, instead of returning to their respective homes.
When the services were over, Father used to share a meal with us and I remember one interesting episode. Once he gave some of the food on his own plate to a member. Now this member had long been afflicted with a bad stomach disorder, but as soon as he ate what Father Moon gave him, he was instantly cured of his malady. Thereafter, every member fervently prayed in his heart, whenever our church family ate together, that Father would give them some of his food. The reason was obvious. Whoever ate it was restored to health. From that time on, the church food came to be called "medicinal" food. Although it was coarse and simple compared to their own home-cooked meals, members invariably preferred to eat the church food.
Overwhelmed with joy through the teaching of Father Moon on the Bible, in addition to the New Revelation from Heaven, many members thought in their hearts, "If I talk to my own minister about all this new Truth, he will be just as overjoyed as myself." Thus they went to their respective ministers and shared with them. The ministers, of course, were more knowledgeable about the Bible than these believers; nevertheless, the members referred to many passages in the Bible to explain the New Revelation to them. But still, the ministers countered their arguments by quoting different passages from the Bible, thus shaking their new found faith. Indeed, there were some whose conviction became very badly shaken. This could happen because it is one thing to "know" something and it is another to explain what one "knows" to somebody else.
If there had been published copies of the Divine Principle then such unfortunate events may not have occurred, but nothing was available in printed form. Now, those early Unification Church members happened to also be the original core members of their own churches and they were often the financial backbone of the church as well. So their ministers began persecuting our members out of spite, perhaps. Those ministers couldn't possibly believe that a young greenhorn, who claimed to be a theologian could know much about anything. So they decided to confront Father and debate with him about Christian philosophy, hoping to convince him of his error. Such were the intentions of these ministers when they came to see him in the company of church family members.
There were many learned theologians among the Christian ministers of Pyongyang at that time. When they came to visit Father he not only knew in advance exactly what questions they would ask him, but he also knew what they believed in Christian theology. Therefore, when they met together Father went out of his way to be cautious and even before they opened their mouths, he proceeded to tell them what they had come to hear. The ministers had no alternative but to thank Father and return to their churches.
Realizing that they could not make headway against him on the basis of the Bible, they conceived a very false and evil plan: they complained to the communist authorities who were then in North Korea, alleging that Father had disturbed the social order and tranquility of the area. The reason they gave for this accusation was that as their churches lost many of their key members they could not continue to maintain the services and this brought hardship and disorder upon them. As a result, the communists apprehended and arrested Father Moon.
I must explain to you that the churches and ministers in Korea were supported solely by the generous donations of their congregations. So when their key members left the ones who were the financial backbone of their churches this posed a serious threat to the internal operation and witnessing efforts of the churches. It was this problem that prompted the ministers of these affected churches to oppose the new church founded by Father. Also, by so doing they wanted to win back their lost members. I must point out that these so-called "lost" members were good fathers, mothers, sons and daughters at home, but after coming to an understanding of the Divine Principle they came to realize that they had not been born of the True Parents but false parents.
Some strange things happened around that time. For example, the spirit world seemed to work its miracles in mysterious ways. A husband and his wife had been close and loving, but after one of them started to come to the church, he or she loathed the very idea of his wife or her husband becoming intimate in the evening. This strange thing happened not only to the young people but to the old couples as well. But when both the husband and wife attended the church, they became naturally harmonized and loving again. It was clear that marital problems only came about when just one of the couple came to the church. In another instance, a problem arose because although the husband was more devoted than ever to his wife, or a wife to her husband, somehow when it came to physical intimacy he or she could not bring themselves to it. Previously, if one of them had returned from the church late, his or her spouse said nothing. But now if this ever happened at all, his or her spouse began to be very suspicious, indeed. Things like this further complicated Father's problems.
It was my dear aunt who witnessed to me. My uncle did not join the church then. So although they had been very close to each other before she became a church family member, she refused marital relations after she joined the church. Consequently, my uncle became very suspicious. He thought that since Father Moon was so handsome, she had transferred her love for her husband to him. Now what would a man's wife think if he alone attended the church? In this case she would think that her husband was having an illicit love relationship with one of the female members. Even the old couples in the their sixties entertained such thoughts. This kind of thing inevitably led to the rumor that our church members were engaged in orgies. The reason that I talk about my own relatives instead of others is that I want to be more convincing.
About 25 years later, my uncle who had persecuted his "Moonie" wife, became convinced that her faith was much stronger than anyone else's and thereafter persuaded their children to join the church in no uncertain terms.
I forgot to relate to you one more episode. One time my uncle drank quite a bit more than was good for him and he made up his mind to come to our church center for the sole purpose of beating up Father Moon. The situation was, to tell you the truth, that bad. Yet now, after so many years, my uncle is a member in good standing and he is in the habit of reminding me that in the event of his death I must promise to see to it that he is buried in the Unification Church burial ground. He is now the dean of a certain college of physical education. He is also known to tell his colleagues if they wish to have faith at all, it should be like his wife's. He tells his students that if they want to attend any church, they should join the Unification Church. From Father's standpoint, my uncle could have been a kind of former adversary, yet at the Day of Hope banquet, my uncle came and bowed very humbly before Father Moon with all the reverence and sincerity at his command. His surrender was unconditional.
As I have already told you, our early church family members could not have been more dedicated and enthusiastic; they would not listen to the pleadings of their ministers, and after hearing Father's speeches, they stopped going to their own churches altogether. This led to the rumor that he was a magician, or a male witch. Many letters denouncing Father Moon with this kind of description reached the communist authorities. Father Moon's witnessing activities in Pyongyang, which had been going on for one year and 10 months, came to an end. On February 22, 1948 he was escorted to the communist police station.
During that one year and 10 months when Father preached to church family members, there was never a single day when he did not shed tears. He prayed three times a day for each and every member. Whenever he needed funds for the church, the spirit world directed members to bring money available to them to such and such a place. Now it came to pass that there was someone who meant to bring money one morning, but later he thought better of it and kept some portion of the money at home. When that person finally did bring the money in, there was somebody else there who was spiritually open and who had received a message from spirit world about that person who was bringing the money in but had kept part of it at home. When he asked that person why he still had some money at home and had not brought the entire amount, the culprit repented and brought the rest of the money to the church. If I keep on telling you these happenings I will never finish, so I'll continue to tell you what happened to Father after his imprisonment. He was imprisoned on February 22, 1948 and was released on October 14, 1950.
While Father Moon was being interrogated by the communist police at their headquarters, they had already heard that he was a magician of some sort. They believed the rumor, so when Father had to go to the men's restroom, two guards accompanied him to keep him from escaping. He was never left alone because of this fear, and they didn't let him sleep for seven days and nights. They took turns guarding him, with only one guard going to sleep at a time. But Father had learned how to sleep with his eyes open wide, and none of the guards could suspect this was the case. I'm telling you all this just to show you that the communists also believed all the false rumors about him.
Father was sentenced to a 5-year imprisonment on the grounds of disturbing the social order. The contents of the verdict that the District Attorney read also contained the charge that he stole private property from innocent parties by fraudulent means. When the District Attorney finished reading the verdict, he asked the defendant (Father) if he had anything to say in the way of rectifying any error in the judgment.
Under communist rule a defendant knows what he is up against so he normally attempts to receive a lighter sentence by flattering the judge, i.e., by saying, "Thank you very much, Sir!" or, "Please consider my case with mercy!" But Father never spoke in this vein; he merely requested that the word "fraudulent" be stricken from the record.
The communist authorities also had a hidden objective in the trial. They wanted to educate and train their Party members by making an example of Father's case. After all, he was a man of religion, and in the eyes of the communists, religion was an opiate of the masses. So they deliberately opened the trial by a clever lead question: "How do you generate electricity?" Then Father explained the principles of electricity. But the purpose of the question was to show that man generates electricity, which is invisible, so why did Father claim that the non-existent God exists? (Didn't it logically follow that this invisible God was also merely "generated" by man, just like electricity?) Those questions were intended to train the Party members.
We should always bear one thing in mind; in the past as well as the present, one thing is clear. Although Christianity has no similarity to communism, in North and South Korea and here in America as well, Christianity joined hands with communism and attempted to destroy our Father Moon.
To understand this we must go back 2,000 years to examine the social conditions and religious assumptions that led to the crucifixion of Jesus. What impressed me most on that first day of Father's trial was that while the communist officials watched him as did many of his followers who were waiting in trepidation Father leisurely stretched his arms and shoulders with an air of unassuming dignity and fearlessness. I had observed these same qualities before in him as he preached in the church. Now, as he received his prearranged verdict of guilty and his sentence to be sent to a cruel prison, Father remembered to wave his unchained hand (the other was manacled) and give us a smile of hope, as if to say, "Though I'm going, take good care of your selves until I return!" We watched Father's shaved head as he was led out of the court and everyone dispersed in silence.
Amidst all this, Father Moon was always full of hope; years later he told us why. Before he went to jail he had received a message from the spirit world that a young person was already waiting for him in the prison. While sitting in the lounge before he was formally imprisoned, Father bumped into the judge who had sentenced him to a 5-year-prison term. The man pretended not to recognize him and started to go the other way, but then Father asked him whether he remembered him or not. The judge wanted to pass him by, ignoring his presence altogether, but when Father had the "guts" to speak to him, he had no choice but to answer: "Ah, yes, I do!" Then he continued to speak, mumbling under his breath, asking Father's forgiveness for what had transpired a few days earlier. He claimed that he had merely been following an order from his superiors, and that he had had no alternative.
Later, he provided some food for Father and put it into his cell. All this clearly proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that Father was completely innocent even though he was pronounced guilty. In the prison everyone was called not by their names but by their numbers, and Father's number was 596 (o-gu-ryuk). When this number is called out in Korean, it sounds like the words meaning "grossly and cruelly mistreated." (The Korean connotation is far stronger than the English.)
Now, in Father's cell there was a prisoner who was soon to be executed. He turned out to be a high-ranking officer in the North Korean People's Army (guerrilla) working in the South. He was a graduate of the Japanese Military Academy, an artillery officer, and after the liberation of Korea he became the aide-de-camp to the commander of the People's Army. He was accused of having shipped some of the military material to the South while he was in that vital position. At any rate, he was locked in a solitary cell after he was sentenced, waiting for the day of his execution.
One day, while he was half asleep and half awake, he thought he heard someone calling his name. He thought it was strange under the circumstances, and as he sat lost in bewilderment, he heard the voice a second time. Still he kept silent and said nothing. Soon the voice called his name a third time. This time he answered "Yes?" An old man with snow-white hair materialized before him and solemnly declared: "You'll never be executed. Instead you must make preparations to meet with a young Teacher from the South." All this happened to the prisoner in his state of being half awake and half dreaming.
One day after this extraordinary event, this man's name was called. He could not help thinking that his time was up. Slowly, he dragged his feet to the door. But then he was told that his death sentence was commuted to a three-year prison term. The reason for this sudden about-face was that his superior commander, who had gone to Russia to attend a military conference, returned to find his most trusted aide in jail. He requested a pardon for the prisoner and promised to assume the entire responsibility upon his own shoulders.
I believe the joy of the prisoner must have been beyond description. But in his joy he had already forgotten about what the old man had said to him. Once again he heard that same voice in a state of half dreaming, and this time the voice sounded angry. "So you forgot what I told you, eh? How could you forget to make preparation to meet the young Teacher?" The old man vanished like a will-o'-the-wisp, and in the same instant his own father materialized on the spot and said, "Son, I'll lead you to where the Teacher is."
Dragon Throne of the Chinese emperor
They both went up some steps that led to a gigantic image of the Dragon Throne upon which a King sat. The father said to his son: "I'll let you see the young Teacher, so you must bow very humbly three times." They both bowed very low in a prostrate position, touching their heads to the floor three times. Then as they were getting up, the father said, "Now lift up your face and behold!" But the son could not see well; the resplendent light blinded his eyes and he had to close them tightly and bury his face in his arms. "Lets go back, son," the father said, and they both descended the steps. Just as the son touched the last step, the father disappeared.
Soon the prisoner came to his senses, and was confused and flustered. By the way, his name was Mr. Kim. I hope that you will remember his name. Now it was into this Mr. Kim's cell, that Father had been put. He had been in and out of many jails and police stations because of his involvement in political action for Korean independence. So he knew all the rules and regulations of the prison system by heart. As soon as Father arrived in the cell, he introduced himself to Mr. Kim and the other prisoners, 20 in all. As a newcomer he was expected to sit and sleep nearest to the open toilet, so he proceeded to go there without being told.
Now Mr. Kim had been in this cell the longest, so naturally he was the cell boss. Somehow he found himself examining the new prisoner (Father) very carefully but surreptitiously. More and more he felt very strongly drawn to him, until at last he wanted to have Father sit right next to him so he could question him about whatever he might know. Because of his position, he could call the new prisoner to sit beside him, so he did just that. But no matter how much he begged him to say something, Father remained uncommunicative.
The reason was that most of the prisoners believed in democracy but adamantly refused to betray each other even under the most cruel torture. So the communists, in order to get evidence against certain prisoners, might plant one of their comrades in the cell. There, in the guise of the most maltreated prisoner, he might pretend to be friends with certain prisoners in order to worm the truth out of them. However, Father soon realized that Mr. Kim's heart was sincere, and so he told him all about his struggle under the assumed name of "Lawrence." While Mr. Kim listened, he was suddenly reminded of what the old man had told him. From that time on he became Father's disciple.
About a month later, Father and Mr. Kim were both transferred to another prison in Hungnam. The food rations given to the inmates of Hungnam prison were so meager that normally after three month's time their health broke down completely and they dropped dead like flies. With the insufficient food and hard labor, their chances of survival were very minimal. Father soon could take one look at a prisoner and say to himself, "He'll last seven more months at most!" And the prisoner in question would die within that period of time.
But Father had to survive on this small and meager ration for five years to come, and it became very clear to him that even he, with his iron constitution, would in no way last that long. That was not difficult to figure out since his daily "meal" only consisted of several spoonfuls of rice. There were among these prisoners some who had the idea that if they prolonged their mealtime they would feel as if they had eaten a lot. So they counted each grain of rice before they popped it into their mouths. No matter how you look at it, they were more overworked than slaves and were always extremely famished, with the inevitable result that some of them just fell over dead while they were eating.
When this happened, anyone who had seen it would grab his food without regret; no one felt sorry for the dead. The one who grabbed just reacted to the situation instinctively, that's all. Sometimes, to cite an extreme case, someone would bite a pebble in his rice so then he would spit it out along with a few grains of rice. Can you imagine, brother and sisters, somebody else would grab that spit-out rice and eat it himself!
Father Moon had no choice but to think out very carefully how he would survive on this starvation diet for five more years. Then he proceeded to give away half of his ration to others and eat for himself only the remainder. Father thought to himself: "This half ration is all that I can live on for the next five years." Then after three months he began to eat the whole portion. And he thought again, "This half is mine. The other half is an extra portion that God has the mercy to give to me!" After that he always felt well-fed.
When we think of Father in this dire situation, we must realize that if we are to get one new church family member every 50 days, then we should follow Father's example and get a new spiritual son or daughter every 25 days. While you listen to me now, please bear in mind one thing even if Satan eliminated everyone else, he would never achieve victory if Father survived those five years in the communist prison. In other words, if Satan had been successful in making an end of Father and no one else, then Satan would have triumphed as the Lord of Creation. Under the circumstances, Satan must have contrived and schemed in every possible way he could think of to dispose of Father Moon, by fair means or foul. Satan undoubtedly had the advantage because he had put Father Moon where he wanted him to be.
Fallen man is willing to serve two masters. For this very reason, neither Satan nor God could ever take the position that this or that human being was theirs and theirs alone. If a person sets up the conditions acceptable to God, then God will accept him, but if he sets up bad conditions, Satan will take him. One thing you all must know is that Satan can't possibly harm a person, not even a hair on his head, unless God grants His permission. Then when does God permit Satan to perpetrate such horrible things? Well, it is only when man makes the bad conditions. Jesus was given three tests. Imagine then, brothers and sisters, how hard Satan tried to tempt and harm Father.
Brothers and sisters, he could have prayed to God for more food and less hard labor, but he never prayed from this kind of weakness. On the contrary, he told himself that only this half portion of food was his and then God gave him the other half as an extra portion. Father did not feel sorry for himself because of insufficient food, but rather considered himself lucky to enjoy double rations. This was why Satan could not find any condition to invade. Father did all that hard labor above and beyond the call of duty. So how could Satan destroy him?
Father Moon seldom spoke to the other prisoners while serving his jail term, but there was one person he spoke to during the brief lunch hour. This was Mr. Pak, a prisoner in charge of two- or three-thousand other prisoners. This made him a very powerful man in the prison. Father told him how John the Baptist had failed to fulfill his mission. Well, in his youth Mr. Pak led a very spiritual life, and had become one of the deacons in his church, but later he left the church. Now, when he heard Father, he reacted very negatively, with a glint of hostility in his eyes.
If he chose to, he could have easily jeopardized Father Moon's very life. But Father merely said to him, "You shouldn't, you know!" and briskly left him. That very night Mr. Pak tossed and turned in his bunk and could not sleep, tortured and agonized. Then an old, white-haired man materialized before him and rebuked him, saying: "Who do you think that #596 is? How dare you to oppose him!" Mr. Pak, exhausted and terror-stricken, apologized to the old man, and then he no longer felt so agonized.
The next day Father went over to Mr. Pak during their lunch break. The first thing he said to Mr. Pak was: "Did anything special happen to you?" Mr. Pak thought it was really strange that Father already knew although he had had no chance to tell him, but he related to him all that had transpired the previous night. Thereupon Father told him how Mary, the mother of Jesus, failed to fulfill her portion of responsibility. [Mr. Pak later wrote The Tragedy of the Six Marys by purposely misinterpreting and twisting what Father taught him.] Mr. Pak could not believe his ears, and still less could he believe Father.
He objected strenuously. Father merely said again, "You shouldn't, you know!" and left Mr. Pak. That night Mr. Pak found himself more agonized and restless than the preceding night. And then he admitted to himself that he was mistaken and sorry, whereupon he felt better again. The following day they met again and Father told him something much more unbelievable than anything he had said previously, and Mr. Pak again got very angry almost violent. That night he was again beset with anxiety and restlessness, tossing and turning in his bunk, and again the old man appeared to him and rebuked him harshly: "You don't understand, you fool!" After going through these very extraordinary events three days in a row, Mr. Pak right then and there became the 2nd disciple of Father Moon in Hungnam prison.
Before coming to know Father, Mr. Pak had not done any favors for him, of course, but now that he had become his disciple, he was determined to find the easiest work for him. But Father refused to accept it. On the contrary, he went out of his way to do the most difficult labor.
Satan tries to tempt man through those who are closest to him. On the surface, it seems Father Moon should have accepted the things offered to him by his followers those upon whom Heaven had bestowed mercy in letting them understand the dispensation. But Father took the more difficult way instead.
The most difficult chore in that prison camp the one which Father did consisted of breaking up the rock-like fertilizer that had been piled up for several years ever since the days of Japanese rule and carrying it away in bags. These bags would be weighed on a scale first and then carried onto a freight car. It was the most demanding kind of labor, and normally this job paid the highest wages, such that seven months of this type of labor could support a family for a year.
However, in the prison this job had a quota. A team of 10 men had to finish 1300 bags in eight hours. Now each bag weighed 88 pounds (40 kilograms). Furthermore, the job was divided into a series of five different tasks. Two people on each team took care of one task. Of them all, the worst task was to carry the fertilizer bags and weigh them on the scales. Father and a partner were to do this job, but his partner managed to disappear most of the time, leaving Father to do the work alone.
If a team of 10 men did not finish the 1300 bags in 8 hours, then their food ration was cut in half for the day. Though their exhausted bodies ached with pain, they had to grit their teeth and go to work just to get the miserable "entire" ration.
The fertilizer bags were not made of nylon or heavy paper, but only of rice straw. The straw was very abrasive and after a while it cut into the flesh and in the worst cases the bones became ex posed. When the sulfuric acid and ammonia in the fertilizer got into the exposed flesh and bones, you can imagine the excruciating pain.
Even in the coldest winter a prisoner only half dressed would sweat. Father once caught malaria in the summer and was hanging on to his life by only a thread for 12 days. The other sick prisoners went to work just to get food. But Father regarded his sickness as indemnity caused by the human Fall, and accepted his illness gratefully. He went to work each day, not for the sake of the food, but for the sake of all the countless saints and prophets who had been sacrificed miserably in their pursuit of God's will. With the determination to liberate them from resentment, he overcame all the difficulties.
In the morning when the prisoners were marched to the factory, they walked in a formation of 8 people. They were told to hang their heads like criminals and to hold hands with the other prisoners. The reason for this was so that they could not look at each other or at anyone else, or make signs or signals with their eyes. This was important because they had to go through city streets where people were gathered to get to the factory.
While they dragged their weary feet, most prisoners had saliva drooling from their mouths, and some of them, too sick and exhausted, would fall by the wayside. This terrible ordeal lasted two years and eight months for Father. During this period he was awarded a special prize each year for his hard labor. He was chosen for this prize from among 3,000 prisoners. The deeper meaning behind Father's tribulation is that even Satan had no power over Father, and that even Satan should follow the example that he set for us.
Even during this terrible indemnity period, many interesting things happened to Father. He seldom spoke, never opening his mouth unless the situation demanded it, but many people who did not even know him smuggled in food for him. They later confessed that their dead ancestors or spirits would materialize out of nowhere and whisper into their ears: "Bring this food to number 596 in the prison." Father always shared his food and clothing with other prisoners, and sometimes he wrote to his friends or relatives in Pyongyang. Now when we went to see him in prison, he always came out dressed in old, patched-up rags, although we had sent him fine clothes. So we knew he had given away his gifts to the others in the prison.
The communist prison gave so little food to its inmates, but in order to avert a public outcry they permitted the parents and relatives of prisoners to bring food and clothing. In that prison, food was the most important thing, and whenever prisoners received any from the outside, they never kept it where others could find or take it. They always hid it under their pillows where they slept, so the others couldn't steal it.
As for Father, whenever he ate any extra food in his room, he always gave some of it to the others there. Because he always shared his food, his cellmates looked upon it as their own. Even when he himself did not know how much was left, the others knew to the last ounce. Why did they know this so well? Because they felt that it belonged to them. They were always so hungry and they were afraid the food would all be gone much too soon.
One day, however, Father found that the amount of food that should have been there was reduced considerably. The other prisoners knew who had eaten it and they became very angry, even though it was not their food at all. But they could not punish the culprit after all, he did not really steal from them. So they went to Father and pointed out to him who the culprit was, and begged him to let them punish him without mercy. But Father said nothing at all.
The next evening Father invited all of his cellmates and placed the remainder of his food in the center of the room. He handed a plate to the thief and said, "You may take as much as you can eat." The guilty one dropped his head in shame and didn't dare to take any food. Father piled up as much food as he could on the plate and guided the hands of the guilty one to take it. The other prisoners were outraged. It was bad enough that this culprit had stolen the food, but now his plate was being filled for him! Brothers and sisters, as leaders in this church you may face a similar situation. If there is one troublemaker and the other members petition you to hand out some sort of discipline, how would you handle it?
Man has an original nature which is good, so he knows whether or not he has done wrong. So if you forgive the wrongdoer with love, you are pouring hot lava or coals of fire on his head. So he'll repent of his sins and make a resolution to restore his fallen nature.
Father's own mother lived about 1500 ri (approx. 375 miles) away from where he was in prison. But she had to manage a farm and a household, and take care of a large family, so she had no time to spare. But when she got news of her son's imprisonment, she packed food and clothes, and despite the fact that transportation was scarcely available, she set out to see Father. She loved him very deeply.
I'll relate a story that goes back a few years. Korea was liberated on August 15, 1945. At that time Father Moon was studying in Japan. He sent a telegram home to the effect that he would take such and such a boat and arrive in Pusan on a certain day. But the boat that Father Moon was supposed to have boarded sank and all its passengers drowned. When the news was out, his mother wanted to make sure that Father wasn't somehow still alive, so she travelled 2,000 ri, all the way to Pusan.
This meant that she travelled from one end of the Korean peninsula to the other. She had no means of ascertaining Father's death, and giving up all hope she went back home. Her skirt was torn and her feet were badly cut, infected and bleeding. She cried her heart out, bemoaning and wailing, this great mother, all the way home without being aware of her terrible appearance or condition. Now, after having sent the telegram, Father left his lodging to get on the boat, but his feet got stuck to the floor, as if they were glued. His instinct warned him that something was terribly wrong, so then he decided against taking that boat.
One day, Father's mother came to the prison. In a mother's eyes, even a grown-up son is always "my darling little son." As soon as she saw Father coming toward her, his head shaven and in his jail uniform, her heart ached and tears cascaded down her old worn face. But Father Moon said to his crying mother, "If you cry because your son is going through all manner of misery and suffering, and because you have so much pity for him, then please go home right now and do not come back here to see me again." What Father wanted to tell her was that if she had shed her tears, not because her son was suffering and miserable, but because she was proud that he had been jailed for building a new world in the name of Heaven and for all mankind, then he would have gratefully accepted her tears for him.
Father Moon told us all this, but he never breathed a word of it to his beloved parents, nor to his wife and child. In any case, what pained his mother more than anything else was the fact that although she had brought food just for her son, she witnessed him sharing it with the other inmates. On the way back home, she stopped over in Pyongyang and vowed to me absolutely that when Father got out of jail, she would never, never let him out of her sight again; that she would for sure keep him at home and never let him go away from her again.
She had already drunk too many bitter cups of misery over her son's difficulties with the law authorities during his student days. When she came within sight of her own home she broke down and cried, beating her breast, and swore she would never go back to see Father in the prison again. But she would spend every spare moment making clothes and preparing food for him. In the midst of all this crisis, the war broke out between the north and the south, on June 25, 1950.
I believe I have already told you before, but let me repeat that Heaven was merciful enough to give its revelation to a chosen few, and they became Father's disciples. They now numbered twelve. Among them was the past president of the Federation of Christian Churches in North Korea. A very renowned minister, he decided in prison to serve Father and desperately awaited their release from prison.
There was a prison annex about 10 ri (2.5 miles) away from Hungnam. The minister heard that the labor imposed upon the prisoners in that annex was considerably lighter, and so he came to Father to tell him of it. Father told him not to go there. But the work at the prison was too much for him, and he chose to have himself transferred to that annex against Father's advice. Mr. Kim, of whom I spoke about earlier, also came to Father, saying that he, too, desired to be transferred to the annex. Father told Mr. Kim that it was all right for him to go there. But he also warned him to try and make an escape, should anything happen there.
Hungnam, where Father's prison was located, happened to be an industrialized zone, which naturally became a target of the American bombing. Soon after the war started, American bombers attacked the area continuously. The communist prison staff members managed to get into the underground facilities, but they left the prisoners above ground. One day Father suddenly had an inspiration, and he felt that a bomb was going to drop where he stood. He moved to another spot saying, "Whoever comes with me within a radius of 12 meters will escape this bombing unscathed!" Some of the prisoners upon hearing this, quickly moved to where Father Moon was. As they did so, a one-ton bomb exploded where they had just been and seriously injured or killed those who remained there.
Even under these trying circumstances, Father never stopped thinking of his future mission, and he continued to make elaborate plans to carry out the restoration of the fallen world.
Now the frontlines of the war were changing, in favor of the U.N. Forces. They landed in Hungnam even before they reached Pyongyang. The communist jail keepers were desperate and began executing the prisoners starting with the annex. After disposing of those prisoners, they moved to perpetrate the same inhuman atrocities against the ones in Hungnam. They called out the prisoners by number, and gave them the order to bring with them three days' food rations and shovels. They deceived the prisoners into believing that they were being transferred to another prison, but in actuality they were being taken to a nearby mountain where they would dig their own graves before being mowed down by gun fire.
Father's inner voice warned him unmistakably: execution! The communist officials finally reached his cell. The inmates of all the other cells had already been whisked away. It takes no special inspiration or imagination to know the desperation of Father's situation. However, before they got to all the prisoners in the cell, the U.N. Forces which had already landed at Hungnam started marching to the city. The communists could not cope with this crisis, and leaving the prisoners behind, ran for their lives. At long last, Father was liberated. It was October 14, 1950.
Father Moon's prison term lasted two years and eight months. This was a testing period during which Satan did his very best to tempt Father and to destroy him in any possible way. But Satan couldn't do it because Father never offered him any pretext or excuse, or made any conditions under which Satan could lay his hands on him. In my mind, the road that Father walked was not one which the spirit world or even Heaven helped him to walk. It was a road on which they had no other recourse but to render assistance to him.
Even while he was in prison, Heaven had a special dispensation to guide his church family members in Pyongyang. Father also knew that more and more of his followers those who had sworn before Heaven to serve him throughout their lives were abandoning him. Yet he did not feel forlorn. Instead, he made it a point to pray three times a day for all members, loyal or disloyal. After his release from prison, Father tried to find each and every member. When he could not locate some of them himself, he made sure that one of his followers went to meet them in his place.
It took Father 10 days to return to Pyongyang from Hungnam. He spent 40 days looking up and calling on all his church family members, down to the last person. It was only then that he decided to go to the south. Father was the last one to do so in the face of the Chinese communist offensive.
Getting back to Mr. Kim and the well-known minister, whose name was Reverend Han, remember that Father Moon gave permission to one but not to the other to go to the prison annex. What happened was this: Reverend Han, the one Father told not to go, was cruelly executed at the annex. But Mr. Kim, remembering Father's advice, made a daring escape on his way to the execution and went to South Korea. The one that disobeyed Father perished. The one who followed his advice came out of the ordeal unscathed. Why am I telling you all this? Because there are many who, being able to communicate with the spirit world, tell others what to do or not to do, calling on the authority of their power. But Father never acted like this. He spoke plainly, without reference to the spirit world.
When Father arrived in Pyongyang, many of his followers had abandoned him. His own home was within three days' walking distance, but during the 40 days he spent in Pyongyang he never went there. Instead, he used all of his time to visit each and every one of his followers, both faithful and unfaithful. We were unworthy of his love and attention, of course, having betrayed Heaven, but Father sacrificed seeing his own family just for our sake. After several days in Pyongyang, he had found only three or four staunch followers.
Among his personal belongings that he brought from the jail was a bag of rice powder. He told us to get a large bowl of water and after pouring the contents of the bag in it, he mixed it with the water and kneaded it. Then Father gave each one of us a sizable chunk to eat. Food was scarce in the prison, as I have already told you, but he saved this precious rice powder for us. Besides, from the prison to Pyongyang, Father walked for 10 days over rugged mountain ranges, eating only the rotten potatoes that he found in deserted farm houses along the way. Even his mouth must have "watered" just at the thought of a handful of rice powder during that time. It was we who should have prepared a gift for Father's return, but instead he was the one who thought of everything, including this rice powder. He must have struggled bitterly not to eat it, just to save it for the waiting church family members!
Nowadays, there are many people who give to their superiors or their friends gifts of left-over things that they no longer need. But rare indeed are the people who share with others a morsel of food when their own lives are in jeopardy from hunger! I believe we all must realize that parental love is high and deep and without limits. Some times we ask for money from Father in the name of a new church to be built or some other project. We may think that it would be much more meaningful for us to receive help from Father rather than from someone else. But we can't always go this route, no matter how high, deep and limitless his love may be. Sometimes he makes us realize this by saying, "You may want this money but it would be better for you if you did not." So let's bear in mind that we should learn to repay his sincere heart with more devotion and sacrifice.
It often happens that when someone breaks his promise to us, we vow to cut off all connection with him. This may be especially true of the husband and wife who love and trust each other. If something goes terribly wrong, they may end up in the divorce court. When we hear about someone who breaks his promise, we usually drop him, even without talking to him about it.
But Father Moon did not go back to his village where his beloved parents, brothers, sisters and friends lived, although he knew the future course of events in which case he should have thought only of saving his own family by persuading them to go south. Instead, he spent all his time and energy on us, most of whom had turned our backs on him. He did this because in his opinion we were pledged to go the way of God's will together with him. Even in the prison he prayed for each and every one of us three times a day. Nor was this all. After his release from prison, he came to look up each one of us.
Before Father reached Pyongyang, Mr. Chung Hwa Pak had arrived there. Mr. Pak had promised Father that if he ever had the good fortune to get out of jail, he would donate a house large enough to accommodate 300 church family members. But after getting out of prison, he was beaten up by someone so badly that his leg was broken. So he left his own village to come to recuperate at the home of his elder sister in Pyongyang. Father went to Mr. Pak's village, and inquired of his whereabouts. When he found out where Mr. Pak was, he told me to go there and bring him over, which I did, and later I took him back to his elder sister's.
When Father had finally contacted each one of us, it was already December 3rd. The fortunes of war were turning against the U.N. at that time, as the Chinese communist People's Volunteer Army joined the North Korean Army. Soon the U.N. Forces began to retreat and the people were told to go south. The freedom-loving people had no hesitation in obeying this order, and they started to move southward. Almost everyone had left the area, and Father was still searching for an old woman church member.
When he found her, it was December 4th. At the age of 40, she had desperately wanted to read the Bible, but she could not, being illiterate. One day God's hand guided her in reading the Bible syllable by syllable, her index finger pointing to each Korean letter. She also used to pray for a long stretch at a time up in the nearby mountains. One day, on the way back home, she came upon a gigantic old tree, and she thought she heard it speak to her. It seemed to say, "Good old granny, please make use of me for any purpose at all even as a block of wood in the shed. Please use me!"
According to the Divine Principle, creation exists for man's sake. Therefore all things of creation want to be taken and used by a true human being. This tree strongly desired to be made some use of by this old grandmother. Another time while climbing up the mountain she found it a little too exhausting for her. Then a strong wind began to blow and blew her to the top of the mountain. Even before Christianity was introduced to Korea, she had been a faithful follower of a traditional Korean religion.
On one occasion, God appeared before her and said, "You faithful one, give up the old faith. Go to the church I direct you to. Do you see the cross above the steeple over yonder? Go there from now on." Thus she became a Christian convert. When she met Father, she was 76 years old. That old woman confessed that whenever she sat next to Father, she had the impulse to touch his clothes. He was like her own son but she looked up to him and believed him to be the Messiah.
Now this old woman was on her death bed. Father instructed me to go over to her home and tell her that he had returned safely. When I arrived she was only half conscious, in the twilight zone, so to speak, between the living and the dead. So I had to shout to her about Father's safe return, and I could hear her respond with, "Yea!" A smile crossed her lips for the last time. When I reported this to Father he was sad, but he only grunted and said, "Now it's time to go south!"
Pyongyang was almost deserted. Father commanded me, "You go fetch Mr. Pak." At that time, Mr. Pak was living with his sister. However, when I got there, she had already left the day before to go south with her husband and children. She thought that her brother would be a terrible burden to them if they took him along. They had left one bicycle and a dog with Mr. Pak. He thought that not only his sister's family, but Father as well, had deserted him. He had been bitterly railing against Father up until then, who in Mr. Pak's mind had failed to keep his promise to take him along to the south. But when I appeared he was transported with joy, and cried like a small baby.
Well, in any case, I put him on the bicycle and pushed it to the place where Father was waiting for us. When you think of a bike, you probably imagine the kind that you see in the streets here a well-oiled, sleek, smooth-running machine. But that old beat-up bike of 33 years ago was not like that at all. It was a miserable contraption. Anyway, Mr. Pak's leg was fractured, and Father pushed the old bike with Mr. Pak on the seat, steering as best he could so as not to fall off. It was a bitterly cold December. Snow covered the road. I followed them with a knapsack on my back. Our long trek as refugees began on December 4th.
At that time, it was common for many to leave their wives and children behind because of the inclement weather, for they thought they would return home in a matter of a few days. Those few days have since stretched into 28 years.
Some people were in such a desperate hurry to leave the city that they had no thought of even their own parents. Well, the main road was strategically blocked by the U.N. Forces, so we had to go by another route over steep mountain ranges. You would not be able to find such rough, bumpy roads here in this country. The roads were unpaved.
The Chinese People's Volunteer Army opened up artillery fire and shells exploded, as if to shred our ear drums. The enemy was closing in on us and the Korean National Army was in retreat. The situation was urgent. We were beset with fear at any moment we might be taken prisoner. It was, as I said, very cold, but we were sweating profusely as we were going up a steep climb.
We took a short break before pushing on over another steep hill. As we got up to go on, Mr. Pak said, "Father, all three of us might be killed on my account. Please leave me behind. Please go without me." Father mildly rebuked him: "We who are united in the way of God's Will should live or die together. Together, understand?" This gave us a new ray of hope. I felt a surge of energy within me.
"New Song of Inspiration" is one of the Holy Songs that Father composed after his release from prison. Let's sing it now, and then let me proceed.
Upon the earth I came to life in the
world God prepared.
One rejoicing land of freedom I am chosen to build,
to reveal the Truth of God, His Purpose and His Will.
Sacrifice yourself and live all for His Desire, all for His Desire!
All Heaven sings a mighty song,
for a new Eden begins now; spread the message to all.
Sacrifice yourself to build our Lord's new world of life.
Seek the land of freedom now, all for His Desire, all for His Desire!
We seek the new eternal base, blessed
family of God,
long awaited by the Father, God of Goodness above.
Now proclaim the great new Truth of kindness and good will.
Pioneer new Heaven and earth, all for His Desire, all for His Desire!
Within a day of bright new life, stand
upholding the right.
In the pure new life eternal raise the standard of Good.
Praise the Father of all Good, our glorious true Ideal.
Build a whole new world of peace; we will build it now, we will build it now!
I will continue by telling you a few episodes of our journey south. We had to push the bike through water as well as over the mountains. Once we had to cross over part of the sea to get to an island about two and a half miles from the shore. We had to wait until the tide was out in order to cross. We had just walked almost 25 miles the night before and didn't arrive at the shore until one or two o'clock in the morning.
Now I had to carry the bike on my back, while Father Moon carried Mr. Pak, who was about his own weight and size, on his back. It was pitch dark, of course. A tiny oil lamp was burning on the island, and that was the only thing we could really see. At least it was a reliable guidepost. The sea was still deep in many places at low tide, and we had no way of knowing where it was shallow and safe for us to walk. It was very perilous, to say the least. If we stayed in one spot a few seconds too long, our feet could sink too deep for us to pull them out and go on.
No doctor was available within miles to the best of our knowledge, and if Father had slipped and fallen even once, Mr. Pak's legs would have been re-fractured and he would have had no access to any proper medical care. His leg was already in a cast, stiff and straight. We finally made it to the island, hoping to catch a boat going south. But, alas, no boat was there, and we had no choice but to turn around and go back the two and a half miles through the slimy mud in the bitter mid-winter cold with our pants rolled up to the knees.
It was cold. We were exhausted and very, very hungry, so we cooked some millet. At the terrible prospect of our journey into the unknown, Mr. Pak and I faltered. We no longer had the will to struggle on. Father, intuitively sensing the weakening of our will, encouraged us by saying: "Today a special person is waiting for us, to shelter us and give us a feast. You wait and see." So then we felt a good deal better. We gritted our teeth and crossed back over the mud toward the land. It was dusk, and the bitter wind howled and cut into our flesh. We finally reached the shore, however, and continued on our way.
Soon we met some watchmen from a nearby village. Seeing that Father Moon's head was shaved, they thought he was a communist soldier, perhaps a deserter or a straggler. All South Korean soldiers kept their hair at a normal length, while North Korean soldiers shaved their heads, or at least had crew cuts. So it was no wonder that they mistook father for a communist soldier. They started to beat him. He took out his Bible, and explained that he was a minister who had been imprisoned by the communists, and that was why his hair was cut so short.
The watchmen were still suspicious. They opened the Bible at random and, citing chapters and verses by their numbers only, asked Father to tell them what they said. They wanted to make sure that he really was a Christian minister. Of course, he had no trouble answering all their questions. They gave back the Bible to him and let us go free. We had just started on our way again, when we perceived a dim light coming from a window in the distance. We went and knocked on the door of that house, and a fine young couple invited us in. They gave us delicious food and that night we slept very soundly.
The next day I realized, belatedly of course, that Father had been right about "the special person who would give us a feast." It occurred to me then: Father had had to bolster us up the day before by saying that we would meet a special person, who would give us a feast, which we did. But suppose that I had not faltered in weakness earlier, but had instead had the presence of mind to comfort and support him. If I had done that, he probably would not have been beaten up by the village watchmen. Actually, it was we who should have been beaten up, but Father took our place. It also occurred to me that the grace bestowed upon us came to us at the price of Father's suffering.
As refugees we had to get up at the crack of dawn and go our way without delay. When it was too dark to go on, we knocked on any door, went in and cooked our meager fare. That was the daily routine for us as refugees, and it did not vary much from day to day. One day, though, we decided to stop to rest for the night even before it was getting dark. We entered a deserted house. It was my job to gather firewood or even dried grass anything that was available to make a fire to heat the place where we stayed.
That particular day, I looked around but found nothing at all. I wandered further and further away in my search, and ended up in a cemetery. I saw a large bag made of straw, with two handles! I pulled out the two wooden handles, brought them home and started a fire with them. By the way, the corpse of someone who had died in the village had been carried in that straw bag to the cemetery. After the burial the bag with its handles had been left there. Father and Mr. Pak were shivering in the back of the house.
Without opening the sliding door, Father Moon called out to me and said, "What sort of firewood are you burning out there anyway?" I told him the whole story, and he ruefully said, "You shouldn't use just any firewood you know." I must confess that he knew the wood I was burning was impure, even without leaving the back room.
Another time we had been trudging along the road all day. A large house came into view and we decided to rest there overnight. There were several other families who had arrived earlier and had already eaten their supper. When we too finished our meal, it was around 11 o'clock. The craving for sleep overwhelmed us, but Father said, "Let's get going!" We begged him three times to let us stay there, but each time he remained adamant and kept insisting that we should depart at once. Well, we had no choice in the matter, and we set out on our journey south ward once again. It was after one o'clock in the morning when we found a hut and we slept there a few hours. At dawn, however, we were told to hurry on our way once again.
A river blocked our path, but since it was so cold, it was frozen solid several inches thick. We pushed forward, walking over the ice. Many airplanes were zooming low over our heads; we heard the strafing from the air and machine guns were returning the fire from the ground. We realized that perhaps the Chinese communists were already close by. Across the river, the U.N. soldiers were putting up barricades to defend the last battle line. In doing so, they were blocking the way to the refugees who were still to the north of that line of defense. Then and there I began to appreciate why Father had pushed us so hard the night before. It is no wonder that even since then I have deeply respected his judgment.
We had been traveling south on foot for almost two months now, and Mr. Pak's fractured leg, thanks to the Lord, healed. We left him in a safe area, very far from the front line. Father and I pushed on toward Pusan. Luck was with us, and we caught sight of a train at a station. After two months of struggling on foot, this was like Heaven on earth, even though we had to hang on to the front of the locomotive, exposing ourselves to the wind. It is interesting to note that we caught the train at Ul-san and got off at Cho-ryung, then a small suburban station outside Pusan. Ul-san has since become a large city with major heavy industries, while Cho-ryung has become the main station in Pusan.
When we first arrived in Pusan, we didn't know a single soul. However, Father bumped into one of his former pupils whom he had taught at Sunday school many years earlier. We spent the first night in his room. But I could not continue to stay with Father at his place, being too much of a burden, so I found a job in a restaurant, where I worked and slept.
In the meantime, Father ran into Mr. Duck Moon Aum, an architect, who had been his classmate at Waseda University in Tokyo. He and Mr. Aum had been on very familiar terms. After Father told him about his plan for the ideal world to come, Mr. Aum had a very extraordinary dream. In this dream, Jesus' sister came to him and declared: "I harbor resentment against my mother on my brother's account." She went on to say that there was only one way to remove that resentment, and that was to find the key to a safe, inside which was another safe, within which was yet another safe. The Reverend Moon, she continued, was the only person to hold that key, and no one else. Mr. Aum, by the way, was a Buddhist, and he had no idea that Jesus had a sister. When Father spoke to him more about the Divine Principle, Mr. Aum began to serve him with awe and reverence, thus becoming his disciple.
The next person he encountered in Pusan was Mr. Kim who had become his first disciple in the prison. He had since married, and Father stayed with that couple for two weeks. Their room was a tiny cubbyhole, but they lived there together. Father Moon used to bring Mr. Kim and Mr. Aum to the restaurant where I worked. He introduced them to me, explaining to me in some detail what sort of person each one was, and this elated me very much. Of course, he talked to them about me, too.
We all felt that we already had a large church family. Father was always hungry in those days and I found that out one day when he came to the restaurant by himself. I spoke to the owner and asked him whether I could serve him, saying that he was my most respected teacher. I served him in a separate room, and when I went back a few minutes later, all the food had been eaten clean off the plates. So I brought more food. Soon that was gone too. And then again. So I knew that he had been hungry for many days. He had nothing really to eat, and he labored at the docks during the night and slept in some sunny corner during the day.
While he stayed with the Kims, he undertook the writing of the Divine Principle. The place was noisy and cramped, to say the least, and one day he asked me whether there was a room to let where I lived. My landlady had one, so he rented it, and we lived in the same house. It was very, very tiny. When he lay down, there was no more room his head touched one wall and his feet the opposite wall. When Mr. Aum came over, he had to lie diagonally, being quite tall. I started on a new job at the U.S. Army base. He worked all day on the manuscript while I was gone, and when I returned, he would read to me what he had written that day, or else he would give it to me to read aloud.
Those who had already known Father in Pyongyang and Seoul started to come to see him now. When this happened, he took them up a nearby mountain for prayer and holy songs. He often asked Mr. Aum to sing for us. If we had had the New Hope Singers then, we would have sung every day, I am sure. By the way, Father loves music, and he especially likes listening to songs.
Father began collecting rocks and stones of all sizes on the mountain to build a house there. Whenever he had a few moments to spare, he carried lumps of soil to one particular spot. At that time I had a job painting the barracks of a U.S. Army post. As a joke I did a portrait of someone there. Father took one look at it, and encouraged me to do more for practice.
A strange thing happened afterward. One day a man got a job at the U.S. Army post to paint portraits of the wives or girl friends of the American GIs. He was paid well for his work and he did not feel right somehow making money only for himself. One day he asked me to do a portrait like his own work, and promised me that he would take orders on my behalf. The first job he commissioned me to do was a portrait of a black soldier.
Up to that moment I had never set eyes on a black man. I did not know then how to use the proper color combinations to make the black man come alive on the canvas. It took me roughly four and a half hours to finish the portrait. I brought it back, not in hopes of getting paid for it, but with trepidation of being taunted for my poor work. The man, however, thought it was just fine, and gave me the money, plus some new orders. This uplifted me, and I began to paint portraits from then on. The strange thing was that my orders increased in proportion to the increase of our church members.
Of course, I did this work in spare moments after my day's work at the U.S. Army post. When I came home after 5 o'clock with new orders, I would start painting right away and continue until midnight or one o'clock in the morning. But before I got home, Father had already bought the necessary supplies, and he made the frames, as well. He watched over my shoulder until I finished.
When I went to bed, he stayed up to frame the portraits and he would have them all ready for me by the next morning. After a while he began to retouch my work, making improvements here and there. Then he began to choose the right color combinations and to do the background painting. Soon after that I began painting only the head, while he did the uniform and the back ground. And then he added one more chore painting the hair part. Sometimes we stayed up till four or five o'clock in the morning.
When some members showed up at our studio to see Father, the old folks among them would often get so tired that they would lie down on the floor to sleep. But Father Moon used to tell them that they could get some sleep sitting up against the wall, but not to lie flat on the floor since I was so engrossed in my work. When you are involved in some work, you don't feel tired, but when you watch someone work, you get bored and tired as well. Even under these conditions, Father always remained at my side, watching me work on the canvas. I was often tired, but thinking of him, I was somehow able to overcome my own fatigue.
At the end of each month I took all my earnings to Father. Then he would use it to buy food and other necessary household items, such as firewood, oil for the kitchen lamp, etc. Since I ate my meals at the U.S. Army post, Father cooked all his meals by himself. He was a better cook than most womenfolk. Most of the members at that time were very poor, and when they came, he did not hold back in giving them rice, or buying clothes for them, or giving them cash. My earnings did not last long.
One day he told me, feeling sorry for me: "All the money you gave me is gone." He then itemized all his spending what he bought, and for whom he bought it. I did not feel too good on these occasions. I felt he was telling me all this because he thought that I was worried about where the money went that I gave him. But I was in no way concerned how the money was spent once I gave it to Father. Each time this happened I made up my mind to serve him better with all my heart.
Sometimes I had to wait for the man who brought me the orders, so naturally I was held up at the U.S. Army post. Then Father would come half way there, waiting for me in the street. Some nights after I went to bed, it seemed to me that I heard him singing. When I strained to hear him better, I realized that he was singing and praying in a voice mixed with sobbing. At times he came to wake me up. Then he took me to a large boulder on the mountain and said, "You pray here. I'll pray over there."
One morning he shook me out of bed and told me to light the lamp at once. We had no electricity then but only a small and very old lamp. Then he commanded me to bring sheets of paper and a pencil, and to write down what he was going to say. It had to do with the Second Advent. He kept on and on, until it was all finished. Normally, one writes a bit, then stops and thinks, and writes again, stops and thinks, and writes again... As for Father, he never paused a second during the whole time he was dictating to me. The Divine Principle was written in Father's own hand writing except for this part, which is mine. Can you guess now how the book came to be written?
Let me tell you another story about an old woman who used to come visit Father Moon when he was in prison in North Korea [Se Hyun (Grandmother) Oak]. She was then living with her family in Pyongyang. The members of her family were very devout Presbyterians, and when they came to Pusan, she heard that Father was undergoing all manner of hardship. She wanted to come and see him, but her family opposed her so strongly that she could not come over as often as she desired.
One day, she was in her kitchen preparing a meal for her family, when all of a sudden her hands started shaking like autumn leaves. She just could not help herself; this violent shaking was beyond her control. Then she heard a voice saying: "Do you think that I came here to command you to do the cooking? Why all this cooking when your Teacher is living in such narrow straits?" When her husband and children saw her shaking so violently, they were flabbergasted. They did their best to stop her from shaking, but to no avail. Fear and trembling came over them too, and they were at a loss. Finally, they consented to let her go see Father.
At last Father built a small shack and dug a well, all with his own hands. The well sparkled with such fresh spring water that village women folk came to draw water from it, sometimes from quite far away. They used to cast wistful glances at our shack, for they had heard a rumor that two fine youths lived there. Around that time, a certain Christian denomination held a revival meeting in the lower village. It was led by two evangelists, one a man and the other a woman. The village womenfolk told them that two wonderful, sincere young men lived in the upper village, and persuaded them to go witness to them.
The woman preacher [Hyun Shil Kang] came to knock on our door. I was away at work at the time. As for Father, he was coming down from the mountain where he had just finished his manuscript. At that moment he was longing for the company of the church family members when he found this woman standing in front of the house. She intuitively knew that he was one of the two sincere young men that she had heard about, so she immediately started talking to him about her mission.
Father invited her in, but it was he who ended up talking to her, and not the other way around. As he talked on, and on, they lost all track of time and were not aware of how late it was getting. The sun went down and it became pitch dark outside. He told her about the One Ideal World to come, and though she was very impressed and excited, she could not bring herself to believe that this young man, living in this tiny cardboard shack, was seriously talking about the One Ideal World.
Then she suddenly became aware that she, a young woman, had been alone with a young man in a private house for a long, long time. She took her leave, concerned with what others might think of them, two young people alone together. But she came right back the next day. She was a keen student of theology. Father told her to open the Bible and asked her to read aloud certain chapters and verses. They were the very same chapters and verses that had been troubling her for a long time. This happened many times; these chapters raised certain questions and doubts in her mind that she could not answer or dispel no matter how hard she tried. It did not take her long to make up her mind to join the church.
Father sent this young woman evangelist on a mission. He gave her just enough money to go to Taegu and told her to pioneer the church in that city. She was under the impression that just as he had converted her, so she could just as easily convert the one minister she truly respected. But this did not happen. Her witnessing work did not go as well as she had expected. She cried often; she prayed hard too, for God to guide her in finding the people who were prepared to accept the Truth.
She knew in her heart what she had to offer was the Truth, so she made a firm resolve to dedicate her life to spread this new Truth. One day she was going on a straight path in the city, when all of a sudden she couldn't lift her feet from the ground. It was as if they had been glued. She felt the hand of God was guiding her, and she chose a house in that same block, knocked on the door, and entered. The lady of that house had been instructed to await a certain woman evangelist whose face was exactly like that of this pioneer missionary. She had put on a snow white dress in preparation to receive the evangelist and was waiting in the front yard. Thus, the city of Taegu opened its first door to the Truth.
One member had so much opposition from his family that he could not come to the church. Father wanted to see him badly, so he went to the neighborhood where that member lived. Since he could not enter his house, he stood outside the front door all day on the chance of catching a glimpse of that member's face. It was a two-story house, so Father hoped to see him when by chance he would come out on the balcony. Finally this member did come out, and although he did not see Father below, Father caught a fleeting glimpse of him. After that he returned home. Father always loved each and every member. Even though we cannot always visit the people in our home church area, if we really are longing to see them, spiritual phenomena can occur.
Finally, I'll tell you the story of another member. She was a member of the church that Father had attended in his school days, and she was a very devout Christian who had led a life of spiritual devotion and grace for over 20 years. One day during a church service, the minister had asked Father to say a representative prayer for the congregation, and his prayer was so fervent and so moving that as soon as the service was over, this lady specifically looked for Father and shook hands with him.
From then on they became close colleagues, and she realized that this young man was no ordinary person. Six or seven years later they met again in Pusan. Father invited her over to his shanty house. She always thought of him as a young "student," but he began talking to her about many things, and knowing that she was spiritually open, gave her a certain theme to pray about. The theme was whether God loved Reverend Moon more than all the rest of mankind or not. She was dumbfounded, and did not feel like praying at all. But she also thought to herself that this was no ordinary person, and that he did not propose such a thing to her in jest, so she decided to give it a try.
She went to pray on a mountain throughout the entire night. Heaven told her, "God loves Reverend Moon more than all the rest of mankind." So she came back to tell Father this truth that she had learned from her prayer. Thereupon, he proposed another theme for her to pray about. This time he challenged her to pray to find out whom God loved more, Reverend Moon or Jesus.
She was no longer in the mood for prayer at all. She was terribly upset and returned home. But afterwards she got very sick, and remembered that God had said He loved Reverend Moon more than all the rest of mankind, so she changed her mind. She went back to the mountains to pray long and hard. Heaven finally presented to her an unmistakable vision: Father stood on one side and Jesus on the other. And the invisible God, who had guided and protected her, stood between them. Then God began to move toward Father Moon, until finally He disappeared into Father's own body. As a result of this most extraordinary event, she has been serving Father ever since, with all her heart and soul. She is still in perfect health, by the way.
If you remember, Father told us this morning, among other things, that we must bear this in mind at all times: in order to become God's true children we must feel that no matter how much we love Him and cherish Him our love for Him is not quite sufficient. In thanking God this morning, Father said that we may wish to return our love to God, but our love for Him is very insufficient. This was so clearly stated in his own song, "The New Song of Inspiration." Father's life consists entirely of loving and cherishing God.
Still, he feels that his love for God is not sufficient. He is a man who loves all mankind and loves them more and more, yet always with the feeling that he cannot love them enough. That's Father Moon. That's the path he walks. Therefore, we, too, love and cherish Heaven and our True Parents with all our hearts, but still we should feel that our love for them is not enough. We must also love church family members under our charge, feeling our love for them, too, falls short. Thus we become the children of God who will give Him joy, and of whom He will be proud.
Finally, let me conclude my long, long testimony by saying that we brothers and sisters must serve our True Parents with all our hearts, love and cherish one another as brothers and sisters, yet always with the feeling that our effort falls short of the ideal of love. We should all become those people Heaven and True Parents can be proud of. You have been listening to me with such attention. May Heaven and our True Parents shower upon you love and more love. Thank you very, very much.
1 Chang Ho Ahn (November 9, 1878 - March 10, 1938) was one of the most distinguished leaders of Korea in this century.
A Korean independence activist and one of the early leaders of the Korean-American immigrant community in the United States. He is also referred to as his pen name Dosan. Dosan established the Shinminhoe (New Korea Society) when he returned to Korea from the US in 1907. It was the most important organization to fight the Japanese Occupation and many of the great Korean patriots got their part as members of this group. He established the Young Korean Academy in San Francisco in 1913 and was a key member in the founding of the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea in Shanghai in 1919. Ahn is one of two men believed to have written the lyrics of the Aegukga, the South Korean national anthem.