A Vision for Education and Victory
This week in history, January 15-21:
- The Day of Hope banquet is held (January 17, 1974)
- UTS is granted its absolute charter (January 17, 1990)
- The Global Expansion of True Families speaking tour is held (January 17, 1999)
- “The Saddest Day” (January 18, 1951)
- Reiner Vincenz ascends to the spirit world (January 18, 2015)
- The Cheongpyeong Providence begins (January 19, 1995)
- The first Victory over Communism Asian Rally is held (January 21, 1970)
- The Barrytown property is purchased (January 21, 1974)
January 17, 1974
Day of Hope Banquet in San Francisco, Proclamation of “Hope and Unification Week” in Oakland
Perry Cordill, International One World Crusade (IOWC) team leader in 1973, leads one of the rallies for the Day of Hope Tours, 1973.
On January 17, 1974, the San Francisco Day of Hope banquet attracted more than 500 guests to Benjamin Swig’s Fairmont Hotel. In Berkeley, where True Father spoke at Zellerbach Auditorium on the University of California campus, The Daily Californian reported, “Rev. Moon’s followers have waged one of the neatest and best-run publicity campaigns seen here in years.” In San Jose, January 17-24, 1974, was proclaimed “Hope and Unification Week,” while in Oakland, Mayor John H. Reading proclaimed the period from January 21-24, 1974, as “Day of Hope Days.” Single days of “Hope and Unification” were proclaimed in Berkeley and Hayward, and on January 21, 1974, Rev. Moon was awarded the key to the city of Berkeley by Mayor Warren Widener.
January 17, 1990
UTS Obtains Absolute Charter
David S.C. Kim with Rev. Sun Myung Moon, Unification Theological Seminary.
Unification Theological Seminary (UTS) was granted its absolute charter by the New York State Board of Regents on January 17, 1990. This was the culmination of a fifteen-year struggle with the State of New York since the seminary’s first application. Because of the controversy surrounding the church, the application process was prolonged and UTS was denied in 1978. UTS took the matter to court, claiming discrimination and unfair treatment, narrowly losing a 4-3 decision of the New York State Court of Appeals in 1981. Reapplication for the charter was made in April 1984. On November 21, 1986, the New York State Board of Regents approved by a 12-2 vote the seminary’s provisional charter. UTS petitioned for its absolute charter in May 1989, and this was granted eight months later by a 14-0 vote. Since 1986, UTS was able to grant degrees to its graduates so long as the state approved. From 1990, UTS was able to grant degrees unconditionally.
January 17, 1999
Global Expansion of True Families Speaking Tour
The Global Expansion of True Families speaking tour was held on January 17, 1999, in the Olympic Park Weight Lifting Stadium in Seoul. In his speech True Father emphasized, “True love is the beginning point of creation, and we must fulfill true families centered around true love.” The speaking tour, which covered eight cities around Korea, continued until January 25, and the tour was completed successfully with 80,000 participants in total. (Courtesy of the History Compilation Committee)
January 18, 1951
“The Saddest Day”
Refugees from North Korea.
There have been many “saddest days” in God’s providence. During morning devotions in 2012, True Father referred to one of his early sermons, “Hometown We Miss,” in which he spoke about his life in Heung Nam labor camp in North Korea and his journey to the South. He said then, “January 18 … is the saddest day for me.” He explained that he had offered great devotion to his followers in North Korea “in front of Heaven … but all of them betrayed me.” True Father recalled that he “wrote a long letter expressing heavenly love and tried to get in contact with them three times” following his release, “but they returned my third letter to me.” True Father left North Korea carrying that letter with him. He carried it until he crossed a bridge in Yeongcheon City in Gyeongsang Province in the southeast part of the Korean Peninsula. There he tore up the letter after having read it again and proceeded to Pusan where he restarted his mission in the South.
January 18, 2015
Rev. Reiner Vincenz’s Ascension
Rev. Reiner Vincenz, one of the Unification movement’s most respected and beloved elders, ascended to the spirit world on Sunday, January 18, 2015. Born in East Germany, Rev. Vincenz escaped to West Germany at age 17. He was the first person to join the Unification Church in Europe, joining under Peter Koch in 1963. He became the first missionary to France and served as its national leader until 1972, when True Father called him to the United States. Rev. Vincenz led European and international members of the International One World Crusade (IOWC), which supported True Father’s Day of Hope campaigns in the United States, Japan and Korea. True Father selected Rev. Vincenz to lead the Yeouido rally campaign, which brought more than one million attendees to the rally at Seoul’s Yeouido Island Plaza in 1975. After returning to the United States, he was put in charge of the New Yorker hotel’s restoration and was made one of the leaders responsible for the Washington Monument rally. Rev. Vincenz returned to Germany as national leader in 1978, helped lead Home Church activities in the United Kingdom, and served as True Parents’ ambassador to ten South American countries in 1988. In the latter years of his life he worked in business and fundraising efforts to support world missions. His personal motto, “Marching On,” well described his public life. Rev. Vincenz was blessed to Barbara Koch as part of the 43 Couple Blessing in 1969. Their daughter, Leena, was blessed to Jario Gavin in 2007. Jario and Leena now share the surname “Vincenz-Gavin” to honor Rev. Vincenz’s appreciation for the value of lineage. True Mother directed that the movement conduct a National- and World-Level Seonghwa Ceremony after his passing.
January 19, 1995
Cheongpyeong Providence Begins
True Parents purchased the land which became the Cheongpyeong Heaven and Earth Training Center in the late 1960s. On July 12, 1971, Unificationists completed construction of the original service hall under True Father’s direction. True Father mapped out his plan for expansion to the West on mountainsides and other locales surrounding Cheongpyeong Lake. The land also served as a holy ground and workshop site. What is termed the “Cheongpyeong Providence” or “Cheongpyeong Works” commenced on January 19, 1995, centered on the Spirit World Ministry of Soon Ae Hong (known as Dae Mo Nim or “Great Mother”), True Mother’s mother, who ascended in 1989, and Mrs. Hyo Nam Kim, who served as her earthly embodiment. On that day, Dae Mo Nim through Mrs. Hyo Nam Kim removed evil spirits from three Japanese members, marking the first of what would be hundreds of workshops that included not just “separation of spirits” but healing and the “liberation” of ancestors. Cheongpyeong today is the spiritual center of the Unification movement, residence of True Parents and capital of what Unificationists envision as Cheon Il Guk or the “Nation of Cosmic Peace and Unity.”
January 21, 1970
First Victory over Communism (VOC) Asian Rally
The first Victory over Communism Asian Rally was held in the afternoon of January 21, 1970, at the Seoul Citizens Hall. Hosted by the International Federation for Victory over Communism, this rally was held with success through the participation of more than six thousand anti-communist leaders from five nations. The main address was delivered by Vietnam War veterans Shin Jo Kim and Ik Poong Kim. True Father emphasized the importance of gaining victory over communism, saying that this Asian rally was a ceremony to usher in the 1970s. (Courtesy of the History Compilation Committee)
January 21, 1974
Barrytown Property Purchased
The Unification Church purchased the former St. Joseph’s Normal Institute, a novitiate and high school in Barrytown, New York, run by the Christian Brothers, a Roman Catholic lay order, on January 21, 1974. The purchase included 250 wooded acres bordering the Hudson River 90 miles north of New York City and the historic Massena House, a Hudson River mansion originally constructed in 1796, where 10-year-old Theodore Roosevelt spent the summer in 1868. True Father had been searching locations up and down the Hudson River suitable for educational purposes. The Barrytown site met one of his criteria with mountains, water and woods all visible. True Father reportedly visited the site seventeen times before deciding on the purchase. The “Founder’s Rock” marks the place where he decided. The property initially served as a site for 3-, 7- and 21-day workshops. It later hosted 40-day and 120-day workshops for overseas missionaries and “Barrytown Pioneers.” The Unification Theological Seminary, which now offers fully accredited master’s and doctoral degree programs, opened its doors on September 20, 1975, and has graduated some 1,500 students. In recent years the Barrytown facility has hosted matching convocations, Blessing education workshops, and sports festivals.
This Week in History briefly lists significant events in the history of the Unification Church, the lives of the Founders, and world events that are momentous to Unificationists. Most items are marked according to the solar calendar. Items marked “H.C.” correspond to the Cheon-gi or Heavenly Calendar, which is based on the lunar calendar. This installment covers the week of January 15 – 21.