Weekly Dong-A Covers the Cheon Il Guk Holy Days
The recent Cheon Il Guk Holy Day events in Korea garnered coverage by the Weekly Dong-A, a mainstream Korean newsweekly. A translation of the article, titled “Realizing Peace in Northeast Asia through Resolving the North Korean Nuclear Crisis,” is featured below.
International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace Adopts the “Seoul Declaration” . . . FFWPU Hosts a Variety of Events Until February 9
The Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) will co-sponsor a series of commemorative events with the Universal Peace Federation, Sunhak Peace Prize Committee and the Hyo Jeong World Peace Foundation under the slogan of “Shining Rays of Hope Around the World with a Filial Heart for Heaven” until February 9.
At the Second Sunhak Peace Prize Award Ceremony, Italian surgeon Dr. Gino Strada, 69, and Afghan educator Dr. Sakena Yacoobi, 67, will be awarded and recognized for their contribution toward resolving the refugee crisis. Approximately 30,000 people, including 1,000 leaders and parliamentarians from the USA, the UK, Brazil, the Philippines, Nepal, Europe, Asia, South America and Africa will attend the awards ceremony.
The main events will include Rev. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon’s joint birthday celebration, the Second Sunhak Peace Prize Award Ceremony, the Hyo Jeong World Peace Foundation Scholarship Ceremony awarding 10 billion won in scholarships, the 2017 World Summit, the International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP) National Assembly Event, the International Conference on the Unity of Sciences (ICUS) and the 4th Anniversary of Foundation Day.
Birthday Celebration and International Parliamentarians Event
The late Rev. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, founders of the FFWPU, were born on January 6, 1920 and January 6, 1943, respectively. The FFWPU celebrates the founders’ joint birthday on January 6 (by the lunar calendar) each year. This year, the birthday celebration was held on February 2 at the Cheong Shim Peace World Center in Gapyeong-gun, Gyeonggi-do with 30,000 people, including FFWPU leaders from around the world. 1,000 people, including current and former parliamentarians, politicians, religious leaders, diplomats, educators and NGO representatives from all over the world attended the birthday celebration.
The International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP) International Leadership Conference was also held at the National Assembly Hall in Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul on the same day at 3:00 p.m. Four hundred and fifty parliamentarians from 113 nations attended the event. The event included presentations from parliamentarians of each continent on the topic of “The Vision and Role of IAPP in Overcoming the Northeast Asian Crisis and Establishing Peace and Unity on the Korean Peninsula.” During the event, the “Seoul Declaration,” stating, “North Korea’s nuclear arms race is not only South’s Korea’s problem; it is a serious issue that is threatening peace in Northeast Asia and the rest of the world. We will work together to realize peace in Northeast Asia through resolving the North Korean nuclear crisis, was adopted.”
The IAPP was inaugurated in Korea on February 15 of last year, in order to resolve the issues of territorial conflict, terrorism, climate change, famine and poverty and the expansion of nuclear weapons, as well as religious and racial conflicts. The IAPP chapters were inaugurated in each continent, concluding with the inauguration of the North American IAPP Chapter at Capitol Hill in December, involving U.S. congressmen.
Second Sunhak Peace Prize Award Ceremony
The Sunhak Peace Prize Committee hosted the Second Sunhak Peace Prize Award Ceremony at 10:00 a.m. on February 3 in the Crystal Ballroom of the Lotte World Hotel in Jamsil, Seoul. Recipients of the Sunhak Peace Prize, Dr. Gino and Dr. Yacoobi, each received a medal and $1 million USD (approximately 12 billion Korean won).
Dr. Gino Strada was honored for expressing a love for humankind that transcends national borders. He has provided emergency medical relief to those in the epicenter of conflict throughout the Middle East and Africa for 28 years, saving 8 million lives. In 1994, he founded “EMERGENCY,” an international NGO that provides emergency medical treatment, and currently manages over 60 emergency treatment facilities in 16 nations. In 2008, he began to receive signatures from the governments of 12 African nations, including the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Rwanda, etc., promising to provide medical welfare to their citizens. In 2013, a documentary entitled “Open Heart,” which highlighted Dr. Gino Strada’s work with medical relief, was nominated for an Academy Award.
Dr. Yacoobi was honored and awarded for developing an innovative solution to the refugee resettlement crisis through education, working especially in Afghan refugee camps. She founded the Afghan Institute of Learning in 1995, providing education and job training for 13 million refugees. She was especially recognized for her management of 80 secret schools within the Taliban regime, which has provided education for 3,000 young girls who have also contributed to the fight for the rights of Muslim women. She has actively worked to resolve the refugee crisis, and was even nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005.
The Sunhak Peace Prize was established based on the peace vision of “one human family.” In 2015, the Sunhak Peace Prize was awarded to individuals for their contributions toward resolving climate change and the food crisis. This year, the agenda was solving the refugee crisis, as well as the advancement of humankind toward a peaceful future.
Scholarship Award Ceremony and Science Event
The Hyo Jeong World Peace Foundation will present scholarships totaling up to 10 billion won to 2,000 global students, including 500 from Korea and 1,500 from 70 different countries at 2:00 p.m. on February 5 at the Cheong Shim International Youth Training Center in Gapyeong. One hundred of the 2,000 students will be representing 10 different religious groups, as well. In addition to receiving a scholarship, these representatives will have the opportunity to participate in an interreligious camp, and learn about the significance of a movement for religious harmony. The Hyo Jeong World Peace Foundation was established as the Wonmo Pyeongae Foundation in February, 2013, prior to changing its name in October of last year. Since 2013, the Foundation has selected 2,000 global students each year to receive scholarships totaling up to 10 billion won, and has expanded the movement of cultural arts, academics and world peace.
Meanwhile, ICUS, which was launched in 1972 as a stage for scientists to discuss the realization of happiness for humankind, was revived after 17 years for an event held from February 4-5 at the Lotte World Hotel in Jamsil, Seoul, under the theme, “The Global Climate Crisis and the Role of Science.” Sixty scientists, including a recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, Luc Montagnier, shared their opinions at the event.
Celebration of the 4th Anniversary of Foundation Day
The grand finale will be the celebration of the 4th Anniversary of Foundation Day held on February 9 at the Cheon Jeong Heavenly Palace Museum. According to FFWPU, Foundation Day is alluded to in the Bible as the day marking the end of the 6,000-year history of sin and the start of a new era. It is the day when the providence for the settlement of God’s nation, the Nation of Cosmic Peace and Unity (Cheon Il Guk) begins on earth. This will be held on January 13 (by the lunar calendar) as one of FFWPU’s main holy ceremonies.
The president of FFWPU Korea, Kyeung-Seuk Ryu, stated, “FFWPU will work to establish God’s nation, and realize His ideal and dream of a peaceful world. This event is an opportunity for us to embody a filial heart (hyojeong) for heaven, and practice true love for humankind, as well as open a new chapter for the establishment of a peaceful ideal world as ‘one human family.’”