Niger National Blessing Ceremony and Africa Continental Blessing Ceremony
The following is a letter from Dr. Young Ho Yun, Secretary-General, Cheon Jeong Gung Headquarters on November 30, 2019 about True Mother’s World Tour and the 40-Day Cosmic Canaan Course for the Firm Establishment of Cheon Il Guk, which began on Monday, November 18, 2019 leading up to the Clergy Rally on December 28 in Newark, New Jersey.
Beloved Cheon Il Guk leaders, blessed families!
May Heavenly Parent’s and True Parents’ blessings and grace be with you.
The Africa Continental Summit and Blessing Ceremony in Niger began with a welcoming banquet hosted by the nation’s president on November 27 and ended today on November 30 with a great providential victory. Particularly during the summit, the Blessed Africa Project, jointly agreed on with the African Union, ECOWAS and the G5 Sahel (Sahara nations), became the cornerstone of the restoration of the African continent. The “Niger National Blessing Ceremony and Africa Continental Blessing Ceremony” were also triumphantly consecrated, setting a new milestone in God’s providence.
In particular, as True Mother has triumphantly solemnized before Heaven the very first national- level Blessing Ceremony in a Muslim nation. In so doing, the Blessing movement centered on the Only Begotten Daughter and substantial Holy Spirit, our True Mother, transcending the national level and transcending the religious sphere of Christianity while expanding to the Islamic religious sphere has ushered in an amazing era. True Father himself said in the past that the final confrontation our movement would face was not with communism or Christianity, but with Islam. And at the last time he said, “Unification Church members should be able to plant flags of victory that will fly brilliantly across the lands of Africa, as well as sing of victory in front of God.” (Sermons of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon Vol. 18 P. 1)
In this sense, I feel that the Continental Summit and Blessing Ceremony are amazing works that True Mother has achieved at this final stage of the providence, on a path that no one has previously walked. In addition, through these events, Mother has already fully established in advance the model of the course of continental restoration that she will walk from 2020 to 2027.
The original plan that I first prepared under True Mother’s instructions was to hold the Continental Summit and Blessing Ceremony in South Africa. But the Continental Summit needs to be based on the full support and cooperation of the national level. At the same time, the influence of a nation should be the basis upon which to move the whole of Africa. Unfortunately, our relationship with the South African government is not yet fully developed. In a sense, it was only last year that we started to create a national-level witnessing environment in South Africa. Previously, South Africa had been one of the less developed mission countries in the world.
The Nelson Mandela Centennial Celebration in July last year and the Summit in Cape Town last November were all groundwork for the creation of a witnessing environment in South Africa, which is the only G20 country in Africa. In the meantime, through Prophet Radebe, whom Heaven had prepared, we were able to hold both a national-level Summit and Blessing Ceremony in South Africa last June.
For this reason, we decided to challenge Continental Summit and Blessing in South Africa, but there were many difficulties to solve. Meanwhile, the issue of holding an event in Niger was raised. The Prime Minister of Niger and 10 ministers were scheduled to attend World Summit 2019 held in Korea last February. However, through the Niger Ambassador of Korea they encountered negative information about our movement and the Prime Minister declined to attend, and only the ministerial delegation attended the Summit in Korea. Moreover, they were impressed by True Mother and our peace movement, and the Prime Minister agreed to attend the São Tomé “Rally of Hope” in September. However, incidents of terrorism arising suddenly in Niger and other parts of West Africa meant the Prime Minister was unable to attend. He nevertheless sent the Minister of Strategy and Finance, as a special envoy, to True Mother on the day she left São Tomé, in order to convey his personal letter to her. The letter was a request to True Mother that she come to Niger and hold a Summit and Blessing Ceremony there.
We are taking on the course to proclaim national restoration in seven nations by December 2019. Hence, I believed that it was essential to host the Summit and Blessing Ceremony in Niger to achieve two goals; to proclaim national restoration through hosting not only a continental-level Summit, but also a national-level Blessing Ceremony. After asking for Prophet Radebe’s understanding, we agreed to have the continental Summit in Niger and the continental Blessing Ceremony in South Africa. This became official after True Mother gave permission. The Blessing Ceremony in Niger went ahead as planned, with a national-level Blessing Ceremony co-hosted by the government of Niger—yet we also saw the amazing miracle of having the Blessing elevated to a continental-level Blessing ceremony by having it co-hosted by the African Union, ECOWAS, and G5 Sahel. We can say that this Blessing Ceremony established a model for continental-level Blessing ceremonies, and the 200,000-strong Blessing Ceremony that will be hosted at FNB Stadium in South Africa on December 7 will be the ‘Substantial Continental- level Blessing Ceremony.’
True Mother finally decided to visit Africa at this time for the very meaningful “providence of the restoration of the continent.” She also mentioned that between the two significant programs [Niger and South Africa], she would be able to participate at a Blessing Ceremony in Tanzania if it were held on November 30, 2019, after listening to reports from Tanzania National Leader Stylos and Africa Chair Bakary Camara on the well prepared and successful 60,000-person Blessing Festival that was held in August as a foundation of devotion to welcome True Mother to Tanzania. Of course, it was not that this schedule had been finalized; True Mother’s participation at the event in Tanzania was not decided even after the events in Cambodia had been concluded.
Amid the ongoing discussions, True Mother said in Taiwan that if Tanzania were able to hold a national-level Blessing Ceremony, she would travel to Tanzania and officiate. From this point on, the preparations to attend Mother in person at the Tanzania event became more full-fledged based on the prepared foundation of attendance. The International Headquarters and Africa Headquarters encountered many challenges in fielding adequate staff, and in many aspects of the preparations, which were going on simultaneously in Niger in West Africa, Tanzania in East Africa and the Republic of South Africa in Southern Africa.
Wherever her children are calling for her in sincerity, True Mother is ready to go and embrace them, even if it is in a forest. As a result, True Mother just briefly celebrated the great victory in Niger, then headed immediately to Tanzania on a night plane, arriving in the early hours of the morning. Though she had barely slept, she began her day early that morning and prayed for the rally in Tanzania.
However, many unexpected difficulties occurred.
Heavy rain was pouring from early in morning, and many complicated, difficult issues arose. By 10:00 a.m., the scheduled time of the start of the event, only a third of the people that would meet our goal of 100,000 people had arrived at the National Stadium. Even so, present with us were some 800 VIPs including the speaker of Tanzania, 149 parliament members, six ministers (cabinet members, etc.), and other dignitaries.
Even so, after evaluating the local situation from all angles, and especially after gathering all the final reports from the Regional Chair, local leaders, and the national leaders of FFWPU-Africa, the circumstances were not appropriate to hold a national Blessing Ceremony with True Mother. Everyone said that if we were unable to host a national-level Blessing Ceremony, it would be too much to ask Mother to come to the venue and officiate it. We felt very sorry but reported the situation as it was to True Mother. True Mother then said, “Sincere devotion is the most important aspect but there is not enough. Please raise the standard of your devotion.” Therefore, Mother did not personally officiate the Blessing today, but for the sake of the citizens who came to receive the Blessing, we still held the event centering on the local leadership.
Then we made the final decision to hold a “Summit and Special Leaders’ Blessing Ceremony” for the VIPs at a separate venue. We conducted the Blessing Ceremony at the stadium as scheduled, then we hosted the “Summit and Special Leaders’ Blessing Ceremony” separately with more than 800 leaders including parliamentarians, members, and heads of the Tanzania National Assembly at the Rotana Hotel [Johari Rotana] at 2:00 p.m. Job Ndugai, Speaker of the Tanzania National Assembly gave the following message:
Tanzania is known as the cradle of Africa’s independence. Multiple African independence fighters from nations such as South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique came to Tanzania to train, and then returned to their countries as leaders of independence movements.
Today, the True Mother of Peace came to Tanzania. And although we do not have the foundation to welcome her properly yet, just as we were leaders of the independence movement in the past, True Mother’s presence will become a cornerstone for eternal peace.
We will spread True Mother’s message of peace to all corners of the world!
We would be grateful if True Mother would accept the Tanzanian people’s encouragement, comfort, gratitude, and praise. Our members of parliament will do our best to lay a good foundation for us to receive True Mother in Tanzania again.
When I visited Tanzania last year in June, I inaugurated the International Assembly of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP) and Interreligious Assembly for Peace and Development (IAPD) for the nation. After Speaker Job Ndugai attended the summit in Senegal last year, he became a disciple of True Mother’s vision for peace. In truth, Tanzania has not received our movement favorably or positively since Korean Christians have put down their roots here long ago. There were more negative perspectives than good ones. However, after the Senegal Summit, the atmosphere completely changed and there was movement in the direction of receiving True Mother on the national level. As a result, IAPP and IAPD were founded.
Moreover, the reason True Mother loves Tanzania is because Prophet Paul Bendera, who testifies that he is the “biological” son of True Mother, is from Tanzania.
My beloved leaders and members!
There is no way for me to avoid being truly sorry in my heart for conveying regrettable news through this letter to all our leaders and members around the world. Yet, we are one family and one community attending True Mother. Although I regret this situation, I have written this letter because I believe it needs to be shared. True Mother said, “To stop is to fail. To advance without stopping is to achieve victory.”
Leaders, beloved members!
No matter what difficult circumstances come her way, we have our True Mother who continues to advance with fortitude, going forward to another victory without stopping. She is the mother of love, a compassionate mother who receives the devoted efforts made by her unworthy children and accomplishes the rest herself. Today, I felt Mother’s great love more than ever. I am certain that as long our True Mother can advance in such a way, our victories will continue on the “40-Day Course in the Cosmic Canaan for the Firm Settlement of Cheon Il Guk.” During this course, we have accomplished amazing miracles and achieved rapid progress, going beyond national restoration and achieving continental restoration in Cambodia, Taiwan and Niger.
Starting tomorrow on the foundation of the victorious continental-level summit held in Niger, True Mother is planning to offer serious devotion for the 200,000-person Republic of South Africa Blessing Ceremony, the Substantial Continental-level Blessing Ceremony, and the grand finale to 2019 continental restoration in substance.
I earnestly request that our members offer much devotion for True Mother’s victorious course and, more importantly, her good health.
In addition, please offer conditions for the remainder of the “40-Day Course in the Cosmic Canaan for the Firm Settlement of Cheon Il Guk.”