America’s Cheon Il Guk Missionaries Dispatched to Five Countries
On January 14, the Generation Peace Academy (GPA) Cheon Il Guk (CIG) missionaries arrived in their five countries‒Costa Rica, Scotland, Dominican Republic, Czech Republic and Peru.
The Costa Rica missionary team arrived during a 21-day workshop for young Unificationists from all over Central America. The day after, they went straight into fundraising for the next four days. Although they didn’t have any products to sell, they simply went around asking for donations in groups of three. It was a great way for them to start interacting with the Costa Rican people and push them to try to learn Spanish as quickly as possible. On Sunday, January 20, they rested and attended Sunday Service, and were blessed with a lunar eclipse that night.
The team sent to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic consisted of three girls from Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and California. They felt the Dominican spirit immediately as very bright, welcoming and respectful. Within the first hour of arrival, they were greeted by the local Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP) leader, Jake Lavina, a very spontaneous, yet centered leader from the Philippines who cares about the youth of CARP and the youth of the country. He took the missionaries to the home of an active CARP member, and, together with him, they had their first Dominican meal. Afterwards, they visited the Family Federation of the Dominican Republic and introduced themselves to Señor Benardo, the Dominican Republic National Leader.
On the second day, Jake took the group, along with a self-initiated missionary from Japan who joined their team, to the town of Santiago to meet the leaders. That evening, they established a plan for creating a system for guests who were witnessed to by CARP.
On Friday, January 18, the three missionaries were able to witness for a little over an hour to invite people to lectures the following week. At the CARP center, they saw the Japanese missionaries taking initiative of the structure of the center and several full-time members adapting to the lifestyle and ways of the Principle‒to serve, love, and attend the central figure and each other.
The missionaries decided to divide the 120 days into three 40-day devotional commitments, each symbolizing the three stages of growth. Through this, they set an external goal of 21 spiritual children to educate and connect to CARP within the first 40-day period, along with their own personal internal goals.
Since their arrival, the missionaries have been busy inviting other missionaries into their group, designing a plan for the next 120 days, meeting leaders, and seeing the beautiful country of the Dominican Republic. Their main focus has been to adjust to the culture, and plan and execute their strategy as missionaries.
When the Czech Republic missionary team landed in Prague, they were greeted by Svetco Kacirkova and two missionaries from Korea. Their first day was spent getting to know the country by visiting historical sites and landmarks such as the Prasna Brana, or the Powder Tower, Charles Bridge, and the Prague Castle.
The missionaries received an orientation on witnessing from Mr. Martine Masner, who gave them a deeper insight into the culture of the country. They learned how religion has caused a lot of conflict in the history of the Czech Republic, which may be the reason why the country is predominantly atheist. However, they soon discovered that the Czech respect a deep foundation in family and many put great value in relationships.
The Peru group of missionaries have been helping with preparations for a 10-day CARP Peru Divine Principle workshop, which started on January 20, for current guests and CARP members alike. Although the presentations will be in Spanish, the missionaries are using this as an opportunity to expand their Spanish vocabulary, and to broaden their perspectives on how they can best support this small, but growing CARP community.
For the last two days of the workshop, participants received lectures and testimonies about the dream of Hyojeong, and the Pure Love Movement as well. Two of the missionaries prepared testimonies, sharing from their perspective on what pure love is about, as well as the importance and value in practicing a life of faith.
The fifth group of CIG missionaries went to Scotland, which they said felt like “a home away from home.” They were welcomed by the Mr. Robert and Mrs. Oksana Török along with their four-year-old daughter. The Töröks shared their incredible love and passion for God and True Parents with the missionaries and continually embraced them as family‒constantly teaching them and caring for them.
The missionaries went around to four universities to get a feel for the witnessing environment, scoping out areas for potential Divine Principle studies, and busier areas in Glasgow and Edinburgh for potential outreach. Under the guidance of their center leader, the missionaries gained insight on how to witness and become a Heavenly Tribal Messiah.
Many of the missionaries realized just how much God has prepared them to be in their missionary countries. They are determined to allow God and True Parents to be more at home in these countries and they promise to do their portion by helping to change the course of a person’s life through love and the Divine Principle, and ultimately becoming better children of God through these witnessing efforts.