The Words of the Cho Family
On a tour of the World & I building.
Mrs. Betty Lancaster, ICF Coordinator for the Korean Conferences in America, helped to edit Mr. Cho's report.
In addition to the professors, many other groups of Korean leaders are now coming for this training. Among them are: high school principals, writers, retired military leaders, civic leaders, religious leaders, and others. The schedule reported by Mr. Cho is the basic one used for all groups, with a few variations.
Forty-four years of division have caused a deep wound in the hearts of all Korean people which is still not healed. The separation of North and South Korea has wasted so much of the Korean people's energy. It is very difficult to put into words how much the people have suffered. The "national unification" of Korea has always been of utmost importance to the Korean people. Our task is to make them realize that national unification is a substantial issue approaching them today and not just a hope of the past.
After the success of the '88 Seoul Olympic Games, national unification became a nationwide issue overnight. The Korean people strongly believed that the unification of their fatherland could now be achieved.
However, we have to be even more alert and strengthen ourselves ideologically. Everyone is ready to give their opinion on a North-South unification until it is no longer clear what kind of government should be at the center of a unified Korea. People even suggest "a transcending unification system and ideology," which means nothing less than accepting the kind of unification proposed by Kim Il-Sung's "Zuchai Sasang" (Zuchai Thought). Such proposals for unification come mainly from groups of the general public and students who are influenced by leftist powers. People who once demonstrated for democratization are now lobbying for a kind of unification that denies the basic freedoms of democracy. In their fervor, they misguide large numbers of righteous citizens, creating a very dangerous situation for Korea.
Regarding this fact, it should be easy to understand that a firm, ideologically-based standpoint is important. Without that, we will lose ground in striving for unification centered on democracy. We have to deal with people who never reveal their true intentions. Such people know how to apply their dialectic materialistic worldview to stir up problems, forcing societies toward their ultimate goal of violent revolution.
A visit to the Statue of Liberty.
Father knew a long time ago that we would face such difficulties and has been preparing for it in advance. Just as the separation of North and South Korea was caused by internal and external factors, so preparations for a successful unification have to be done internally and externally. On such a foundation of preparations for unification, Father established the Citizens Federation for the Unification of the Fatherland (CFUF) on May 15, 1987. At that time, the movements for democratization were in control and no one was concerned about the unification of Korea. However, soon after CFUF was founded, many political and social changes took place and we could only thank Father for having such insight and love to prepare for this time.
CFUF's structure differs very much from other social organizations; the Federation has appointed university professors to take responsibility for various positions and functions. Although it might seem to be impractical to have presently-working university professors as leaders of a social movement, we have learned from Father that this is a preparation for a possible nationwide open election to be proposed by North Korea in the near future. Having university professors in leadership positions all over Korea, even in the smallest villages, will assure that CFUF achieves its purpose of educating large numbers of people in "Godism." To plan for this work is the purpose of our conferences in America.
These training conferences for Korean professors began coming to the United States in July of 1987. Subsequent conferences have been held every summer and winter vacation. As of March, 1989, about 3,000 Korean university professors have attended the training. The proof of success of the training is the large percentage of participants who involve themselves in CFUF activities upon their return to Korea. Especially at the winter session of this year, hundreds of professors were deeply moved and promised to participate in our activities
I'd like to give a short overview of the training itinerary and program. The first two tours began in Kodiak, Alaska, where the professors had the opportunity to go fishing with Father. The next two tours started in Los Angeles and continued on to Washington DC and New York. After that, most groups went first to Washington DC and then on to New York.
Some of the professors experiencing an American hamburger.
On the morning of the second day, the participants visit The Washington Times newspaper and the weekly magazine Insight. At The World World & I publication they receive a short explanation of its publishing process. When the professors are first welcomed by Ambassador San Kook Han, Vice President of The Washington Times, and other company members, they are overwhelmed by the majestic appearance of the newspaper building. After touring the publications complex, they listen to a report by Ambassador Han. The professors become silent when they hear about the background of these publications. They learn how Father saw the desperate need to establish a newspaper in Washington DC, the capitol of the United States of America and basically the capitol of the free world. They realize how much Father had to suffer before the first issue of The Washington Times could be published. I have seen many professors break out in tears when they hear that Father's noble purpose for publishing The Washington Times is to save the free world and America, as well as contribute to the peace and unification of Korea.
When the morning programs finish the professors have lunch at The Washington Times Building (depending on the size of the group), and continue their afternoon schedule with sightseeing. They are guided through the Smithsonian Museum, where they spend the whole afternoon witnessing human achievements of the past.
In the evening of the second day, The World World & I hosts the professors at dinner. After dinner, Mr. Dong Moon Joo, the Associate Publisher for The World World & I, explains how they manage to publish this 700-page monthly magazine and how the already-published 38 editions of the magazine are greatly influencing the American society. The professors are very moved by this report.
On the third day the participants learn about the Atlantic Video Company, CAUSA International, and other socially beneficial activities. They fall into a deep silence when they hear that all these activities are based on Father's thought and ideology with the purpose of bringing America back to the spirit of her founding fathers.
In the afternoon, the professors tour Capitol Hill and the Library of Congress, to see how much the American people respect their Congress. They are inspired to think about true democracy. Next, they visit the Jefferson and Lincoln Memorials where they are reminded of the great work of these two presidents. They compare, with an envious heart, the great political and social achievements of the United States with the present situation of Korea.
The professors have a farewell party in Washington DC, attended by the Regional Director, Rev. Jong Yeong Ryu, and many Western members who have worked so hard to organize everything. Also, the wives in the Korean Church in Washington DC sacrifice so much to guide and serve the professors. After the guests have enjoyed dinner, Rev. Ryu gives some farewell remarks, followed by Western members in Korean dress singing Korean songs. Completely forgetting their tiredness, the professors never spare the applause and calls for encores. The evening entertainment continues with members of all races coming to the stage and dancing merrily. After some traditional Korean folk songs sung by the Korean blessed wives, the professors want to respond with some comments and remarks. One team leader confessed that he thought he was a man of no tears, having grown up seeing so many big battles, but that night he could not hold back his tears. He went on to say that he never felt so proud of being a Korean as at that moment, and that he would never forget the love and kindness he had received from the members of the Unification Church. He promised to respond to everything he had received and to work hard for the unification of Korea upon his return.
The author, Mr. Cho, with some tour participants at West Point Academy.
After these busy days in Washington DC, the groups go by bus to the beautiful Luray Caverns in Virginia. During the five hours' drive, the scenery along the way reminds one of the American folksong "Country Roads." However, most of the professors cannot resist falling asleep during this drive, wearied from the many activities.
The schedule continues in New York after they check into the World Mission Center. Located in midtown Manhattan, the New Yorker Hotel is not used as a regular hotel but serves as headquarters for the World Missions of the Unification Church -- housing missionaries, special guests, conference guests and related activities. Members in the building warmly welcome the conference participants as they arrive. The day ends with dinner and some time for relaxing.
On the second day in New York, there is a slide presentation on the activities of the International Cultural Foundation and the International Religious Foundation. The professors then depart by bus for a trip to the Unification Theological Seminary in Barrytown, New York, on the Hudson River. The Seminary is a graduate school with about 250 students. Dr. Ed in Ang, Chinese-born, and Vice President of the Seminary, explains the history of the school and Father's plans for its future. After a program and refreshments, the tour continues on to the West Point Military Academy.
A guided tour through the academy grounds informs the passengers of the great persons in American history that have passed through its doors.
Then the group goes to Belvedere, in Tarrytown, where the professors learn from Mr. Hyo Yul Kim of Father's original intention to build a university there. Instead, plans changed and it was used as a training center for World Missions.
They return to the New Yorker Hotel for dinner that night. Members of the Korean Unification Church community prepare Korean food with their love and hard work, much to the joy and gratitude of the professors, who had eaten much western-style food at the hotels in Washington DC.
The third day starts with a special lecture by Rev. Byung Ho Kim of the Korean Evangelical Association and Vice President of the Segye Times in New York. Many professors said that the testimony-style lecture of Rev. Kim helped them to understand more deeply about the Unification Church and to discover the sincerity of the church.
The remainder of the day is spent sightseeing in Manhattan. Buses take the professors through the forest of buildings in Manhattan, including the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building and other famous places. Seeing so many outstanding buildings and sites, the professors would many times start to think about the limitless capabilities of mankind. Time is also provided for shopping, meeting with friends or relatives, or just sightseeing at places not on the official schedule.
After seven days of a tight schedule, the conference comes to an end. The participants are usually quite tired but they would never miss the farewell dinner on the last evening. They sit at the tables with fellow participants and members of the church, sharing their feelings and impressions about the training. Although they are sad that it is time to go back to Korea, they have a joyful time. The training brings them so close together. Just as in Washington DC there is a performance by the Western members, with New York Regional Director Rev. Joong Hyun Pak giving a song and some remarks. Following dinner are some responses by the professors. Final remarks by Rev. Byung Ho Kim conclude the training.
From that point they have time to reflect on their experiences. Many professors were suspicious about attending the training when they first applied. But after hearing many positive reports from professors who had been on previous tours, they decided to go in spite of their reservations. In the end, everyone seems glad they attended. They are able to judge for themselves the rights and wrongs of the rumors about the Unification Church. Most of them evaluate their Korean roots and have renewed joy and pride in being a Korean. Having seen the Unification Church with their own eyes, they will have the courage to speak out against any bad rumors.
When I think about the training from its beginning until now, my memory searches like a revolving lantern, trying to remember all the events and the faces of several thousand professors. One thing I feel very strongly in my heart is my conviction that the Unification of the Fatherland is already in the process of being achieved. This became clear to me when I saw how devotedly our members have been working for this project; their heartistic, sacrificial service moved the professors to tears. Finally, I would like to return all the glory and success of the tours to our True Parents, who have guided and inspired us as we proceed with the training. I will continue to work for the Unification of the Fatherland with my greatest gratitude and conviction.