Successful Turnout At Regional Famicon Conferences
Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) held five regional Famicon conferences across the U.S. from March 6 to 8. The conferences brought together hundreds of Unificationists at the Unification Theological Seminary (UTS) in Barrytown, New York; the New Hope Family Church in Bowie, Maryland; the Chicago Family Church in Schaumburg, Illinois; the Dallas Fort Worth Family Church in Texas; and the Bay Area Family Church in San Leandro, California.
The Famicon 2020 program centered on four objectives: to claim victory for America to unite world Christianity; to commit to leading America in that direction; to take ownership of the Offering Table; and to lead the nation with a culture of love. The Offering Table is a system to track the next seven years of each community’s offerings to FFWPU co-founders Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, affectionately known as True Parents.
This year, multiple Famicon conferences were fully organized and run by youth leaders, creating a fresh, energetic and dynamic atmosphere. They connected with all participants, sharing inspiring testimonies about their journeys as well as their challenges and other experiences. “I am so proud of the youth and how they are leading,” said FFWPU National Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry (YAYAM) Kaeleigh Moffitt. “I no longer have to coach them; I just make sure that they feel loved and motivated to push harder and take leadership.”
Several lectures and discussion sessions highlighted the new and improved Offering Table, an initiative modeled to fulfill True Mother’s four areas of investment: attendance, Blessing and education, social impact, and leadership development. For this segment, representatives within each subregion guided participants through a goal-setting process constructed by Clifton Family Church assistant pastor Naokimi Ushiroda. Each person was encouraged to find an area they feel called to present an offering, and formulate a plan to achieve measurable goals. “The point of setting goals is not success or failure,” said Pastor Ushiroda. “It’s about growing yourself and finding out what it takes for you to achieve a goal.”
The Southeast subregion made a goal to support Christian ministers and further their understanding of True Parents by sending them to the upcoming American Clergy Leadership Conference (ACLC) Chosen workshops in Las Vegas. “Throughout 2019, we visited many churches to promote our community events and really developed new and lasting relationships,” said FFWPU Southeast Subregional Director Rev. Ernest Patton. “We want to deepen those relationships by sharing the teachings of True Parents.”
Dr. Ki Hoon Kim, regional chairman of FFWPU North America, joined the Southwest Famicon conference in Dallas, where he spoke about America’s many achievements in 2019 through the work of True Mother. He said that the tears of joy she shed at the Clergy Rally in December 2019 were because she saw Christianity finally heeding True Parents’ call after more than 50 years of investment in America and Christendom.
Dr. Luonne Rouse, ACLC national co-chairman and co-pastor of the Family Church of New York City (FCNYC), introduced True Parents as “the embodiment of God on Earth today” while speaking at Famicon in Barrytown. “When you feel a great blessed assurance inside of you, and when you discover the truth of God living among you, you can’t help but answer God’s call,” he said.
Participants of various ages shared testimonies about what they are grateful for and what inspires them, exhibiting camaraderie between generations and among communities. Many people further deepened their relationships through meals, worship and praise music, small group discussions, and enjoying a Family Fun Night together.
Individual donors were honored at the closing celebration of each Famicon conference with silver and gold medals and special gifts from True Parents, which were prepared for each country. Many participants said they were grateful for such a wonderful experience and felt energized to make a fresh start for the new year. “We are living proof of Cheon Il Guk,” said FFWPU-USA President Rev. Demian Dunkley. “We are Heaven’s walls, tools, and building materials. We are everything God needs to build a Heavenly Unified World.”
“Famicon was a great experience for me to understand my part in the growing nation. The speeches and testimonies made me feel connected to each person and understand that I’m not the only one adjusting and battling my battles. One thing I’ll take home with me is knowing that no matter how big or small my action is what matters is my dedication, heart, motivation and faith that I put in my actions. I also learned that I can use my God-given talents to offer something up. God is working through me and all I have to do is have faith and follow him. The testimonies made me realize that we’re all fighting our own battles and what matters is that we have a goal we are determined to achieve.” ̶ Rachel Kisile, Grand Rapids, MI
“This workshop was jam-packed and eventful! I gained a few new things. First of all, having the experience of learning about the Offering Table helped me realize that I can actually set a substantial goal for helping the movement, and through doing that, I can build upon my life of faith which is still sort of unclear to me at times. My faith has always been more about believing in my heart and mind but not so much in actually taking action and having faith in God to provide although things may seem impossible. The other thing I gained came from the new emotions I didn’t know I had when we listened to the band play some Christian songs for praise and worship. One song brought out an intense emotion in me. It was a feeling that I truly am a child of God and God has room in his heart or home for me. I guess I never felt worthy of such a space before. I felt a sense of worthiness that made me tear and then cry because I couldn’t believe I didn’t know that before. For most of my life I’ve felt a sadness, feeling like I wasn’t a child of God. It was a great experience that I’ll never forget because I actually have been struggling to cry recently and felt emotions that I really wanted to let out through my tears. I’m so glad that God could help me do so and helped give me release and relief.” ̶ Emmanuel Muyongo, Youth Minister, Minneapolis, MN
“Famicon was really a great opportunity for me to understand what I can do to be a leader in my community and help other leaders support our church environment. It also helped me understand what I can do to help expand my life of faith and gave me an opportunity to understand what my parents went through and what I can do to help them with outreach. This event also helped me understand that, even if my contribution is small, as long as I put all of my heart and devotion to support it, it will really impact what we are supporting.” ̶ Yujin Taira, Minneapolis, MN
“I think this Famicon had the energy of True Mother. Watching the videos from Las Vegas, I could see there is a lot of hope and love behind all the effort that we have offered in the past seven years. Mother is proud of us and we have come really far! I can see True Mother’s heart is to guide us to see the heart of hope that Heavenly Parent has for us to really become his sons and daughters in our personal lives and to love the world. I was grateful to spend time with other people and to reflect on how I can make an offering this year. Thank you for all the hard work that has been put into this.” ̶ Soogin Ogden, Chicago, IL
“I was more inspired than before to reach out to our Christian pastors. I felt True Father prepared everything for this day to come when one great pastor like Noel Jones would influence all of his fellow pastors in his denomination. They already have their network. Each denomination does. They know and love each other. When I asked our PAW pastor in Omaha if he knew Bishop Noel Jones, he said, “Of course. He was just here in my church last April.” That was just two weeks before True Mother’s City of Refuge message. Powerful connection instantly! He and his wife asked if they could take my wife and I out for coffee sometime. All I did was locate his PAW church in Omaha and show up at his Bible Study with a video of Noel Jones’ introductory message for True Mother on my phone. These relationships that used to take years to create now are almost instantaneous. Thank you, True Parents!” ̶ Pastor Mark Lincoln, Omaha, Nebraska
“This FAMICON has been true to its name. It brings all of us together centering on our purpose and celebrating being one family ̶ young and old ̶ with gratitude for our True Parents love and sacrifice. It gives us renewed confidence and hope. Thank you to True Mother for nurturing, loving and raising up a new generation of leaders who are inheriting True Parents’ vision and taking responsibility for God’s will to restore the world through the Holy Spirit and true love. There was a great spirit of love and unity in Chicago. Aju.” ̶ Alan Jessen
“After December 28 and the World Summit 2020, during the Midwest Famicon we were getting together with brothers and sisters so that we’re on the same page and moving in the same direction together. It was great because usually we are doing events and there’s no time to talk and brainstorm about what we should do, unless we take the time to get together by telephone. Discussing the Offering Table helped me to concentrate my focus on what needs to be done since the elements of the Offering Table are the things we need to pray about and brainstorm and make plans for as we go forward. I cried the whole time we were singing holy songs together because the content is so deep. I appreciate the organizers who prepared every detail of the program, the schedule, the videos, etc. We know that God is using them to give us the message He wants us to hear. Thank you, True Mother, for showing us the way and showing us how to live and work by your example. May we use these next two months to the fullest and accomplish miracles in the next six months.” ̶ Nadia, Minnesota
“We experienced so many things. How big True Parents are and how much the providence is expanding and how quickly it is moving. I can now realize why True Mother’s goal is to Bless the world’s population. I can see that she will do it. Before it was only a concept. It is our blessing to do Tribal Messiahship and be a part of True Mother’s victory and to usher in a world of peace, prosperity and true love. Thank you, True Mother!” ̶ Greg Quigley
“I listen to Godible on Podbean, which also has a weekly podcast on robotics and interview various people, Behind The Bots. I had an idea that started with Godible and ended with a thought that came to me at the Dallas Famicon. Some of the things I learned from the podcast interviews aligned with what I heard at the Sunday sermon at Famicon. Rev. Jackson talked about unity bringing it all together. At the next Battlebots I want to bring the first multi-national team. A lot is needed to make this happen. More and more people representing other countries come to this program every year, and bring with them the most visionary companies. I see this as a chance to bring the Principle to the tech sector, and into people’s homes when the show starts.” ̶ Sumy Schick, Irving, Texas
“I really enjoyed gathering as a subregion and meeting each other and celebrating. I really appreciated Rev. Dunkley’s words about being clear about your offering to God and to celebrate your victories. Usually, I move on or feel like I haven’t done enough, but his talk made me realize that I need to claim the victories for God and offer them up. I want to go back and practice reporting my accomplishments to God daily, whether big or small. I want to offer effort and small victories to God and practice a life of constant offering and working towards an accomplishment to be able to offer to God. I am inspired by this Famicon and am really grateful I came.” ̶ Jasmine Santoro, Los Angeles, California
“I am grateful to True Mother for going ahead and holding the World Summit against the advice of the Korean authorities, and am so thankful that almost all the attendees showed up. Praises and glory to God, True Parents and Jesus for having persevered, sacrificed and loved us so much! I am infinitely grateful for having been born at this time in history and that, thanks to my ancestors’ merit, I was chosen. I have not completed the 430 Blessings, but I truly appreciate the extra time True Mother has granted us to fulfill this necessary heavenly task. Thank you, Famicom staff, for putting on such wonderful workshop that has brought a load of inspiration to me!” ̶ Bruna Allen, Bay Area, California
“I really enjoyed gathering together, claiming victories and hearing about the Offering Table. It was inspiring and moving to hear what True Parents have accomplished, and listening to testimonies from leaders who went to the World Summit. It’s incredible what has been accomplished at the World Summit and within these past few months. It always amazes me hearing how True Mother is able to do what no one else has done in history: bringing people from all over together on peace and reconciliation and so much more. It’s incredible and empowering! We are a part of an incredible time period being able to bring people together and working to create a heavenly world for God. I am excited to see the goals we made as communities be put into action, to share God’s love and bring a mini-World Summit UPF conference to our community. Talking about the Offering Table and what the heart of an offering means was a great reminder and something I want to practice more as it’s so important in everything we do. We have to inherit the heart of giving from our True Parents as that is the foundation our movement has been built upon. What’s most important is the quality of our heart and attitude in everything we do on a day-to-day bases, and that is an offering. I am very grateful for this past weekend gathering as a subregion, connecting with one another, sharing stories, and thinking about how we can move forward with the Offering Table.” ̶ Gabby von Euw, Bay Area, California