The Heart of the Father
This week in history, September 3-9:
- True Father ascends to the spirit world (September 3, 2012)
- The Takarazuka Training Center opens in Japan (September 3, 1967)
- The Unification Theological School holds its first graduation (September 4, 1979)
- True Father’s body lies in state as thousands gather to say goodbye (September 6, 2012)
- True Father is awarded National Reunification Prize from North Korea (September 6, 2012)
- The Little Angels go on their first overseas tour (September 7, 1965)
- True Mother speaks at the United Nations (September 7, 1993)
- True Father receives honorary doctorates (September 7, 1995, September 12, 2006)
- Sa Sa Jeol (4.4 Day) is declared (September 8, 1998)
- Gu Gu Jeol (9.9 Day) Liberation Ceremony of Cosmic Unification is established (September 9, 1999)
September 3, 2012
True Father’s Ascension
True Father ascended to the spirit world on September 3, 2012 and his Seonghwa (ascension) ceremony was held in Korea.
True Father ascended into the spirit world at 1:54 a.m. on September 3, 2012 (7.17 by the Heavenly Calendar) in the loving company of True Mother and True Family. He had been admitted to St. Mary’s Hospital in Seoul on August 3, 2012, due to cold symptoms that worsened into pneumonia. On August 12, after 10 days of tests and treatment, he insisted on returning to the Cheon Jeong Gung Peace Museum, where he went from room to room, visiting the East, West, North and South of the facility. The following day his condition worsened. Nevertheless, he insisted on visiting Cheongshim Middle and High School, the Cheongpyeong World Peace Center and the Cheongpyeong Training Center before returning to the Peace Museum, where he offered his final prayer. Afterward he was rushed back to St. Mary’s Hospital, where he remained in the Intensive Care Unit until August 31, when True Mother directed that he return to Cheongshim Medical Center, the eighth floor, from where he ascended.
September 3, 1967
Opening of the Takarazuka Training Center in Japan
On September 3, 1967, the Takarazuka Training Center in Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan opened. To build the training center, Unificationists had offered devotion by conducting a Mt. Fuji climbing tournament a year earlier. A month before the training center opened, on August 7, True Parents visited Takarazuka, prayed over the building and declared the site a holy ground. The Takarazuka Training Center is currently used for outreach and to hold workshops for young Unificationists in the Kansai area.
September 4, 1979
The Unification Theological School’s First Graduation
On September 4, 1979, the Unification Theological School held its first graduation at the old church headquarters in Seoul. Around 600 people attended, and two students from the Department of Theology and 174 students from the Department of Divinity graduated. At this ceremony, the principal of the school encouraged the graduates to be shepherds that do not neglect to further explore the truth. The Unification Theology School is the birthplace for young pastors who then go on to study at the Sun Moon University Theological Department.
September 6, 2012
True Father’s Body Lies in State as Thousands Gather to Say Goodbye
Elected leaders, diplomats, clergy and academics from Korea and abroad were among 15,000 mourners who gathered on September 6, 2012, to pay their respects to True Father. Visitation at the Cheongshim Peace World Center was held from September 6 to 14 from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. Visitors first watched a video of True Father and then moved to the first basement floor, where they received either an offering rose or a lily. They then had the opportunity to electronically input their names and a message to True Father. Numerous floral tributes expressing the condolences of various VIPs from Korea were on display. Beginning on September 9, the public had the opportunity to pay their respects and offer condolences to the family at the Cheon Jeong Gung (Peace Museum), where his holy remains lay in state.
September 6, 2012
True Father Awarded National Reunification Prize from North Korea
The Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) on September 6 conferred the National Reunification Prize posthumously upon True Father, as reported by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). “Moon positively contributed to realizing the nation’s reconciliation and unity and the country’s peaceful reunification and achieving the prosperity common to the nation,” according to a KCNA report. On the same day the supreme leader of North Korea, Kim Jong Un, sent a floral wreath to the memorial altar for Rev. Moon that had been set up in the World Peace Center in Pyongyang.
September 7, 1965
The Little Angels’ First Overseas Tour
The Little Angels set off on their first overseas tour on September 7, 1965. After two years of intensive training and experience performing in Korea, the dance troupe performed in the United States in twenty-five states and in Washington, D.C. Audiences and the media praised them with reviews such as, “The young Korean children sang and danced as if angels themselves had come down and were performing.” Their first performance was in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in front of Dwight Eisenhower, an ex-president of the United States. The three-month tour of the U.S. included 75 performances. On their way back to Korea, they held several additional performances in Japan and finally arrived home on December 26.
September 7, 1993
True Mother Speaks at the United Nations
True Mother gives her address at the UN headquarters September 7, 1993.
True Mother gives her address at the UN September 7, 1993.
True Mother delivered the speech “True Parents and the Completed Testament Age” at the United Nations on September 7, 1993. This followed her delivery of the same speech at the U.S. Capitol on July 28 before representatives from 115 congressional offices and was the springboard to her world tour in which she delivered the same message at 25 rallies in Japan in September, on 40 Korean college campuses in October and in 40 nations during November and December. Prior to her Capitol Hill and UN speeches, on April 10, 1993, the movement published “True Parents and the Completed Testament Age” in the newspapers of 160 nations. True Father delivered the “Completed Testament Age” proclamation in 12 U.S. cities during May 1993 and True Mother in 21 more during late May and June. At the UN event, 105 nations sent embassy and consulate representatives, including more than 60 UN ambassadors. His Excellency Stoyan Ganev, president of the UN General Assembly, introduced True Mother. She was the first Korean woman to speak in the United Nations.
September 7, 1995, September 12, 2006
True Father Receives Honorary Doctorates
True Father receives an honorary doctorate from the University of Bridgeport September 7, 1995.
The University of Bridgeport awarded True Father an honorary doctorate on September 7, 1995. In addition to honoring his work as a religious leader, the award was an acknowledgment of his role in saving the financially troubled university in 1992. Dr. Richard Rubenstein, the school president, stated, “Without him, the university would have died.” The head of the faculty council was quoted in The New York Times as saying she was “happy the university could formally thank a benefactor who had given so much.”
The Universidad Santa Maria in Caracas, Venezuela, awarded True Father a Doctor Honoris Causa degree on September 12, 1996, the first anniversary of the founding of the Universal Peace Federation (UPF). The university’s vice president, Dr. Carlos Enrique Pena, who conferred the degree, explained, “When I learned about the life and work of Rev. Moon, I felt that it was the sacred duty of our university to offer the highest honor to recognize an extraordinary contribution to the field of human rights.”
September 8, 1998
Sa Sa Jeol (4.4 Day) Declaration
The four-position foundation is basic to Unification theology as the structural component of the cosmos, whereby individuals, families and the created order become centered on God. The tragedy faced by God, humanity, and the created world, according to True Parents’ teaching, is that that foundation was usurped by Satan. As such, True Parents’ mission has been to substantially restore the four-position foundation centered on God. At 9:40 on the morning of September 8, 1998, at North Garden in Kodiak, Alaska, True Parents gave a prayer of benediction for the declaration of 4.4 Jeol. True Father stated: “If we add together the numbers 1, 9, 9, 8, 9, and 8 [the date written out in numerals], we get the number 44. On account of the fall of the human ancestors, Satan has been claiming ownership of the number 4, which is the number of Heaven’s four-position foundation.” On that day True Parents declared “4.4 Jeol,” which was understood to restore and establish the perfection number of the four-position foundation of earth. True Father stated that the installation of 4.4 Jeol means that God will be able to perform substantially His works of omnipresence, omniscience and omnipotence. Moreover, humankind was to enter an era of total liberation through the globalization of the Holy Marriage Blessing.
September 9, 1999
Gu Gu Jeol (9.9 Day) Liberation Ceremony of Cosmic Unification
According to True Father, the Gu Gu Jeol (9.9 Day) Liberation Ceremony of Cosmic Unification extended the previous year’s 4.4 Jeol declaration from the family to the cosmic level, “jeol” being the Korean word for “day” in the sense of a holiday or commemoration. The chief manifestation of this was the elimination of conditions needed to receive True Parents’ Holy Marriage Blessing. True Father connected the Declaration Day of God’s Eternal Blessing (7.8 Jeol), established in 1997, to the 9.9 Jeol. The former, he said, culminated the re-establishment of elder sonship, parenthood and kingship in the era of restoration. Events afterward, he said, can be distinguished as events of creation in order to create the original world under God’s sovereignty. After 7.8 Jeol, True Father declared that God could bless Satan who was the origin of the Fall. Passing through Satan’s number 9 (at 09:09:09 on September 9, 1999) signified the starting point of God’s cosmic nation.
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 September 3-9.
Contributed by Dr. Michael Mickler, Professor of Church History at Unification Theological Seminary.