A Season of Remembrance
This week in history, July 30 – August 5:
- The Family Federation for World Peace is established (July 30, 1996)
- The first National Messiah workshop is held (August 1, 1996)
- True Father makes his final visit to Osan School (August 2, 2012)
- True Father is admitted to St. Mary’s Hospital (August 3, 2012)
- God’s Hope For America Tour concludes (August 3, 2014)
- The World Peace Center is established (August 5, 2007)
July 30, 1996
Establishment of the Family Federation for World Peace
The inauguration of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification took place in Washington, D.C.
True Parents convened the Inaugural World Convention of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) before 400 delegates and over a thousand participants at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C., from July 30 to August 1, 1996. This was the Unification movement’s most spectacular federation launch and included an astounding list of dignitaries: two former U.S. presidents of the United States, Gerald Ford and George Bush; former Costa Rican President and Nobel Peace Prize winner Oscar Arias; former Prime Ministers Edward Heath of Great Britain and Brian Mulroney of Canada; thirty-six one-time heads of state or governments; university presidents including Boston University’s John Silber; Christian television personality Robert Schuller; Christian Coalition Executive Director Ralph Reed; Coretta Scott King, the widow of Martin Luther King Jr.; Maureen Reagan, the daughter of former U.S. President Ronald Reagan; well-known comedian Bill Cosby; and Christian singer-actor Pat Boone. In addition, the main proceedings were covered live by C-SPAN television network.
True Mother delivered an opening plenary speech on the “View of the Principle of the Providential History of Salvation,” and True Father spoke on the theme “In Search of the Origin of the Universe” at the convention’s closing banquet. Externally, FFWPU was a high-level forum for world leaders and scholars to address issues related to the family. Internally, it marked a further stage in the movement’s development beyond salvation of the individual to salvation of the family.
August 1, 1996
First National Messiah Workshop
In 1996, True Father announced his intention of sending out “National Messiahs” to complete international missions. The condition for couples to be appointed as National Messiahs was that both husband and wife complete a 40-day workshop at the Cheongpyeong Heaven and Earth Training Center in Korea. The first 40-day workshops were for senior Korean members and missionaries who had served in Unification Church overseas missions for 21 years. The first National Messiah Workshop for the movement’s general membership, including blessed couples and Tribal Messiahs, began at Cheongpyeong on August 1, 1996 and concluded on September 9. Over 300 National Messiah candidates attended. In the end, almost 200 couples or spouses participated in a lottery to receive one of the 183 nations to which True Parents would send National Messiahs. From “Abel” nations — the United States, Canada, England and France — 121 couples received nations in the lottery, whereas from “Cain” nations — Germany, Italy and Austria — 76 couples were given nations. Nations were to be assigned an “Adam” National Messiah couple from Korea, an “Eve” National Messiah couple from Japan, in addition to the Western “Abel” and “Cain” National Messiah couples. True Father directed that National Messiahs should be prepared to invest three generations of their family in their assigned country.
August 2, 2012
True Father’s Last Visit to Osan School
On August 2, 2012, True Father suddenly decided to visit Osan School. True Father’s great-uncle Yun Kook Moon helped found the school, and it was a hotbed of Korean patriotism during the Japanese occupation. True Father enrolled in Osan School in 1934. There he received a patriotic education based on Christianity until he transferred to Jeong Joo School, which was run by the Japanese, one year later. Osan School was re-opened in Pusan after the Korean War and re-established on November 26, 1955, in Bokwang-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul. True Father called a number of education leaders to join him and arrived at 5 p.m. He recalled his past while listening to the testimony of Chang Yeol Lee, his cousin on his mother’s side. In all, the visit lasted three hours, after which True Father returned to Cheongpyeong. While speaking, he coughed quite often, but it didn’t seem to bother him. Those present felt sorry about his condition.
August 3, 2012
True Father is Admitted to St. Mary’s Hospital
Following the Inaugural Rally for the Abel Women UN on July 16, 2012, True Father caught a cold. It worsened and developed into pneumonia. Complications set in, and on August 3, he was admitted to Seoul St. Mary’s Hospital, known in Korea as Seong Mo (Holy Mother), one of the nation’s finest hospitals. There, over the ensuing ten days True Father received every possible medical test, including several X-rays and PET CT blood tests. He spent that period in a private room at the hospital, not in the intensive care unit. On August 12, True Father insisted on returning to the Cheon Jeong Gung. There his condition worsened, and after a day True Mother rushed him again to St. Mary’s. True Father remained in St. Mary’s Intensive Care Unit until August 31, when he was taken to Cheongshim International Medical Center.
August 3, 2014
God’s Hope for America Tour Concludes
The 43-day, 48-state, 55-Holy Ground tour which retraced True Father’s establishment of Holy Grounds in the United States in 1965 concluded appropriately on Saturday, August 3, in Eugene, Oregon, where the American mission began in 1959. The tour had begun in San Francisco on Sunday, June 22, as a nationwide pilgrimage intended to rekindle True Father’s vision of the United States as “a champion of God.” In commenting on the tour, FFWPU Continental Chairman in North America Dr. Ki Hoon Kim stated: “In these 43 days of the pilgrimage, we really want to inherit the spirit of True Father and True Mother. We don’t want to simply remember; there is no meaning in just remembering, just thinking of the past. This brings no meaning in our daily activities. We have to build our vision for tomorrow. … We must unite and rebuild our church and family, and make this country God’s hope.”
August 5, 2007
Completion Ceremony of the World Peace Center, Pyongyang, North Korea
In support of the peace movement initiated by True Parents, the completion ceremony for the World Peace Center in Pyongyang, North Korea, was held on August 5, 2007. FFWPU leaders came from South Korea, Japan and the United States to take part in this event, along with North Korean and South Korean dignitaries including the vice chairman and secretary general of the Chosun Committee for Peace in Asia and the Pacific. True Father remarked, “The environmental circumstances were in place to a certain extent,” indicating that the time was ripe. (Materials provided by the FFWPU History Compilation Committee)
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 July 30 to August 5.