The Words of the Jones Family

Maturing of Our Second Generation

Betsy Jones
August 4, 1987

A group shot of all the Camp Sunrise campers and staff. Seated center is Mrs. Jennifer Hager.

Even before we gathered the children together in Barrytown this summer, I believe Heavenly Father had already been laying the groundwork for the blessed children's camps, especially through the children who went to school in Korea this past year. For example, the dormitories at the Little Angels School have now been reconstructed, and the Japanese and the Western blessed children can share rooms for the first time. Being together has encouraged the use of Korean and has contributed to their being able to achieve a very significant unity. The children in Korea also began a newsletter called the New Generation Times, out of their desire to bring together European and American blessed children and non-blessed children. They want to distribute it to maintain a link between themselves and those back home in America and Europe.

A Pentecost in Korea

Perhaps the most exciting recent development at the Little Angels School was something like a Pentecost experience the children had over three days in July. I happened to call Sharon Goodman [The Goodmans are responsible for the Western blessed children in Korea] right when the experience had ended. She told me that starting July 4, every Western student had received something in writing from Heung Jin Nim. Three of the girls had been told, "Something special is going to happen. You must believe. Love, love, love, and believe, or it will not happen."

Then on July 8, at the first birthday party that the Western and Japanese children were having together, Joni Ang, 13-year-old daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Edwin Ang, received two very moving messages from Heung Jin Nim and Heavenly Father.

They were then instructed by Heung Jin Nim to do a certain type of fast the next day. On that day some of the children felt that Satan was very close and was perhaps going to invade the dormitory. An older Japanese boy gathered the children to pray intensely for unity centering on God and True Parents so that Satan could not invade.

The third night, Sharon said, was like a Pentecost. There was tremendous joy and a deep feeling of oneness among all the children, which they had never before experienced. As Sharon explained everything to me, I found myself crying tears of joy and gratitude that True Father had had the vision to send our children to Korea where they could inherit such a deep understanding and faith, and that Father's son Heung Jin Nim could directly guide them.

Western and Japanese blessed children at the Little Angels School in Korea. In the first seated row are Mr. and Mrs. Kurashira (in charge of the Japanese children) and Mrs. Gertrude Koch and Mark and Sharon Goodman (in charge of the Western children).

Building a Foundation

We started the children's camp eight years ago at Barrytown, with full support from UTS President David S.C. Kim, so that our blessed children could have fun together and develop a deeper understanding about the church. Now we realize that their experiences in camp over the years have actually helped prepare them for the giant steps toward unity they were able to take when they went to Korea. Father's idea for educating Western blessed children in Korea was so that they could lay a solid, vertical foundation for the blessed children in America. We believe his vision has truly been borne out from what happened here and in Korea this summer.

Blessed children need to spend time experiencing life together. Having a peer group of other blessed children is very important for their growth. They need to form strong friendships, because the influence of their school friends becomes greater and greater as they get older.

Even beyond these important experiences with each other, it's important for parents to provide a strong foundation of love and a consistent tradition of faith within the family. More than just saying pledge and praying before meals, the children need to see that their parents are genuinely trying to follow Father. I heard several children at camp talking about some bad habits their parents had and wondering, "Does this mean I'm still a blessed child?" It's confusing for them when they don't see their parents' faith expressed in their lifestyle. Whether the parents have a job or a direct church mission, the children should be able to see that their family is contributing to the church in some meaningful way.

Children feel proud when they see that their parents have unity centered on God and are doing something to support True Parents.

Campers and staff of the Sun Wha Youth Camp. Standing center are (left to right) Mr. Philip Burley, Mrs. Lima Rapkins, and Mrs. Vivien Burley.

A Real Example to Follow
Lisa Lay
August 4, 1987

I was the counselor for the "Crusaders',' the oldest team of girls at Camp Sunrise. They were all ten years old, an age in which I could see they were bordering on the new maturity that adolescence brings while still clinging fervently to their dolls and little-girl needs.

The teenage girls, acting as junior counselors, spent a lot of their time with my team, helping them in their activities. But the most moving part was their spiritual guidance. Many of the older girls had recently returned from a year or more at the Little Angels School in Korea where several of them had deep and direct experiences with Heung Jin Nim, Jesus, and God.

Guided by Heung Jin Nim

They shared with the Crusaders their experiences of learning to unite within their dorm in Seoul, guided by Heung Jin Nim's urgent words. One night towards the end of camp, the teens, led by Joni Ang, invited my girls to a special prayer meeting in the chapel, and they taught them an important lesson.

"God is standing right behind us','

Joni said, "And Lord Heung Jin Nim is on His right side. Jesus is coming through that window now" -- she pointed to a stained-glass painting of the Last Supper -- "and the room is filled to overflowing with good spirit people. They are bowing down to us, bowing as low as they can go, telling us how much they love us and want to serve us. We are sitting on this red rug [in the front of the chapel]. It is like a royal red carpet that they cannot step on. They are cramming the seats and sitting on the floor, trying to be in the room with us. The light emanating from this rug is white and so bright it is blinding them, so they cannot even lift their faces'

Some of the 10-year-old girls glanced around with spooked looks, but because of Joni's and the other teens' simple reassurance, they were relieved -- and full of questions.

"Can you really see God?" they asked. "I thought He was everywhere. How can He be standing behind us?" Heather Burley, one of the Korea alumni, replied, "This is normal. To feel God and Jesus and Heung Jin Nim so clearly with you is normal. Being closed and thinking of the spirit world as a bunch of ghosts is what's not normal"

The teens all nodded in experienced agreement. The Crusaders were excited by the idea, but still a little confused. It was hard for them to really understand how they are different from other people, how they are special to God. The teens had experienced the kind of prayer life most of us in our movement have only hoped for. Deep prayer has become natural for them, and they have matured and grown in an incredibly beautiful way.

By the campfire. Camp Sunrise counselor Bruce Biddle with two of his team members -- Rowland Bergman and Kenritsu Hamasaka.

Many Questions about Life

"It is now time for us to put all these revelations into practice," Joni said. "Heung Jin Nim is not coming to us for fun. There's a lot to be done, and the unity of the blessed children is vital."

The 10-year-olds have many questions -- about life, the spirit world, even marriage. One Crusader, Inmay Kiely, came away in tears from one meeting with the teens. "I learned a lot tonight," she said. "I have a lot to repent for. I've been selfish and cruel. I didn't understand before Inmay told me how at home she sometimes goes up to the prayer room for an hour at a time, often crying without knowing quite why.

The temptations and struggles of the world are very real for our blessed children. Up until now there have been very few who have grown past the teen years with a strong standard for others to follow. It has been an extremely lonely and confusing course for many of them, including Father's own children.

No matter how much love and attention we as parents and caregivers can offer to the blessed children, their real support and example comes from the older children, who are able to pass down a legacy of what Joni described as "royalty':

Before his ascension, Heung Jin Nim used to stand in the woods behind Gracemere house, where many of the blessed children lived, and pray late into the night. His heart really belongs to these blessed children, and now, more than ever, he is nurturing them and guiding them like the true elder brother he is.

Hikers reach the summit of Bear Mountain. Left to right: Kenritsu Hamasaka, Dohi Ang (behind), Harvet Jones, Lisa Lay, Inmay Kiely, Ameri Spurgin, Junto Hose, Mr. Farley Jones, Keikoh Sugiyama, Keiha Kobayashi, lo Ho Seuk, Matthew Jones, Keii Matsumura (face hidden), Kamiye Furuta, Bruce Biddle, Truis Fernsler, Jo Shin Seuk, Masakumi Kamiyama, and Masato Sudo.

Blessed Children's Summer Camp 1987
July 11-August 4, 1987
From reports and interviews with Betsy Jones, Lisa Lay, Jennifer Hager, and Linna Rapkins
Barrytown, NY

Summer camp for the Blessed children in the Northeast region was an unusually special experience this year -- in very large part because of the direct influence of God and the spirit world. Through many of the older blessed children, God and Heung Jin Nim are clearly showing their concern for the growth and the unity of the second generation.

Because of the increasing number of school-age blessed children in the United States, Rev. Kwak advised us to have regional programs for blessed children this summer, organized through the Blessed Family Department in each region. In our area, children from Boston, Philadelphia, and New York were further grouped by age into two separate programs. Seventy-three children aged 7-12 years attended the eighth Camp Sunrise from July 11-25, and 33 teens from across the nation participated in the new Sun Hwa Youth Camp from July 27 to August 4. Both camps were held on the UTS grounds in Barry- town, New York.

Camp Sunrise '87

This year's theme for Camp Sunrise was "Builders of the Universe;' based on the popular "Masters of the Universe" television series. With emphasis on the three great blessings and the restoration of the four fallen natures, the children were taught to "rebuild" their own universe through developing healthy attitudes in life.

Mrs. Jennifer Hager directed the program this year. Each team of six or seven children had a senior and a junior counselor to help provide important individual attention. There were many exciting activities that helped the children challenge and develop themselves individually as well as build friendships and experience something of heaven. Athletic competitions, scavenger hunts, campfires, hikes, and a field day were organized to give the children a genuine good time. They also received disciplined instruction in swimming, dance, horseback riding, Wonhwa-do, and other sports. There was an arts and crafts program, daily Korean instruction, and for the older children a dynamic drama program. Spiritual growth was nurtured through Principle Life Education classes, pledge service, and Sunday service. Principle Life Education in the senior division was taught by Mrs. Nora Spurgin, and in the junior division by Mrs. Sandra Lowen.

"Camp Sunrise '87 was blessed with wonderful staff members." said Jennifer Hager. "Each person came with a solid personal faith and real dedication to the children. Because of this attitude and everyone's prayers and support, I felt that God was able to take charge in many instances."

What made the camp experience truly unique this year was the arrival of several of the Western blessed children who had been attending the Little Angels School in Korea. These teens, some of whom became junior counselors at Camp Sunrise, had in a way an even greater impact on the campers than the adult counselors did. They brought with them a foundation of unity they had developed among themselves in Korea as well as inspirations received from Heung Jin Nim, Jesus, and Heavenly Father over the past months.

Camp Sunrise junior girls performing an original dance (the crowns are made from egg cartons). Left to right: Kounny Rattley, Min Ei Kim, Shukuko Kono, Yukari Takashima, and Emi Masuda.

A Positive Force of Unity

These blessed children arrived from Korea about midway through the first week of Camp Sunrise, and we could noticeably feel they had inherited a deeper level of heart. One night they shared with all the other campers about their entire experience attending school in Korea. First they described external things -- such as the differences in culture -- and then they went into the deeper aspects. Each of them shared something of God's heart with the younger children. One of them said, "I just want you to know that Heavenly Father loves you deeply. You are so special to Him. You are very precious."

From their experience in Korea, a tremendously positive force of unity was generated among them that influenced the younger ones. One night we found the 10-year-old girls praying in the chapel with the teens and asking them many questions about God and Heung Jin Nim {see A Real Example to Follow, p. 38].

"After that, the younger ones could begin to easily talk about Heung Jin Nim," said Betsy Jones. "They would say, 'Heung Jin Nim is truly our elder brother. He is helping us. We just have to call his name: They even suggested to the other children to try to call out his name."

The teens who had received the messages in Korea had been told that they were not to just treasure their experiences but to put them into action. This is what we actually saw happen. They wouldn't hesitate to pray with each other if one of them was having a problem. They all made effort to love and unite. We on the staff never experienced such unity and support from the children before. They also asked much deeper questions about the Principle than ever before.

"The relationship that developed between the younger children and the teens was very precious, and I felt it was providentially important." said Jennifer Hager. "This seemed like an incredible step for our second generation in America. For the first time, I sensed that the Sunrise children definitely felt that their teenage brothers and sisters were committed to them and making a path for them. The oldest teens experienced Jesus and especially Heung Jin Nim with them in their daily struggles and victories. As a parent, I was powerfully moved by this aspect of the camp experience, because Heavenly Father is telling us that He is much more invested in our children than we imagine!"

Seven-year-old Kazue Sato receives the "Sunrise Award" from Mrs. Betsy Jones at the closing banquet.

Sun Hwa Youth Camp

The camp for teens aged 13 to 16, led by Mrs. Linna Rapkins, was named the Sun Hwa Youth Camp. Sun Hwa means "making harmony" and is the name of the division of the Little Angels School in Korea that many of them attended. Making harmony became the theme of the camp -- harmony with God, True Parents, Heung Jin Nim, and of course, each other, as well as between mind and body. Our main focus was on understanding the spirit world -- since many of the teens were having spiritual experiences -- and on developing a deep prayer life.

From our experience last summer, we felt that this year they should be encouraged to take much more responsibility for the schedule. We interviewed a lot of the parents to get their feedback, and we sent forms to the teens asking them for suggestions. The teens seemed eager to share what they thought and came up with many new ideas. We tried to follow those ideas as much as we could.

Before camp session began, we sent a letter to all of them explaining our approach, the theme, and the spiritual content we would be presenting. We asked them to sign a form if they agreed that: 1) they would come only if they really wanted to; 2) they would take responsibility to create a good experience for everyone; and 3) they would obey whatever rules were given.

Mr. Philip Burley taught the spiritual content, and Mrs. Burley directed all the programs. Rocco De Leonardis, Mark Nillson, and Susan Shacter were in charge of activities. The 33 teens were divided into four groups, each with their own counselor: Steve Wright -- younger boys; Mike Vlasicolder boys, Beverly Berndt -- younger girls; and Jeri Tamayo -- older girls.

A representative from each group of teens was invited to attend our nightly staff meetings, and when they came they always had something to share. We wanted to help the teens develop their ability to lead and be responsible by participating in the planning and carrying out of activities. Their taking initiative dispelled much of the resistance that sometimes arises when adults organize everything for them.

The blessed children over 16 who had been in the Ocean Challenge program in Gloucester since the beginning of the summer came to Barry- town for a few days and inspired everyone with stories of their ocean training and their experiences fishing with Father and Hyo Jin Nim. We felt a special need to pray for them, because we knew they were pioneering the path for all the children.

Sack races. Actually jumping are (left to right): Emi Masuda, Nurie Harvill, Jenny Ang, Jessa Stadelhofer, and Min Ei Kim.

Spiritual Guidance

Mr. Burley gave an overview of the Principle; then each morning life situations were discussed in the context of the Principle. In the evenings Mr. Burley taught a kind of meditation to help them become relaxed, more in control of themselves, and more focused, so that they could be receptive and better able to pray. The teens were fascinated by his explanation of the reality of the spirit world. Almost all of the teens said that the meditation was one of the most meaningful parts of camp.

"From the beginning;' said Linna Rapkins, "the Burleys and I felt we were in harmony. If an idea came to one of us, it came to the other two. After a couple of days Philip said to me, 'I don't think we are teaching this. It's all coming from the spirit world. They are telling us what to teach: I believe he even got a message from Heung Jin Nim that said, "Let me do what I want to do with these kids: We tried to open ourselves up to whatever guidance we could get. We felt we were being used as instruments rather than really leading or teaching ourselves."

At the final campfire, we all felt that this summer Heavenly Father's expectations had been fulfilled. 

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