Unification News for July and August 1998
The First Pioneer
By Linna Rapkins
"Weíre going to make some changes," announced Father one day in July of 1953.
Won Pil Kim, Mr. Aum, Mrs. Oak and Mrs. Kang and the few others present glanced at each other and then lowered their eyes respectfully. Changes? What could this mean?
His little Pusan group had now moved into a place somewhat larger than the stone-and-boxes hut built by Father and Won Pil Kim. People were coming all the time to hear Fatherís lectures and to pray with him. It was a busy place. But it was still a small number of people who were really dedicated to working full-time with Father.
"Thatís right, changes," said Father, in response to their questioning thoughts. "Itís so very important that we quickly reach more people. I know weíre not really ready to be separated, but we just canít wait until weíre stronger and more able. It appears that the war in Korea is ending. They called a cease-fire. Nothing definite, but at least thereís hope. It should be a little easier to move around now."
He looked at Mrs. Kang and asked, "How would you like to be my first pioneer and work in the city of Taegu? Itís about halfway between here and Seoul and is almost as big as Pusan."
"I can do that," she answered.
Father looked serious. "It wonít be easy, of course. Youíll be alone, and you have received no real training to be a pioneer. We canít give you much money-just the bus fare to get there and maybe a few won to tide you over. But it is very important to reach more people about Godís revelation." He studied her face. "Do you really think you can do it?"
"Yes, Son sengnim," she answered without hesitation. "I would be honored to have this mission." She thought of all those years she had witnessed to people in her old church before she met Father. It had been excellent training.
"Good," Father said quietly. Perhaps he was feeling a little sorry, knowing how difficult it would be for his first pioneer, especially since she was a woman and would be working alone. Perhaps, he was also thinking how much he would miss her.
He turned to the others. "The rest of us will continue for now in Pusan." Then his eyes focused on Won Pil Kim, "You know, Won Pil, weíre together now. We live together, work together, share our meals-but this cannot continue forever. In fact, these days of being together will end sooner than you think."
Won Pil Kim was too startled to speak. This was getting scary. They had been together so long and had been through so much together that any other way of life seemed impossible. They were a team-a unit-they were one. Won Pil Kim thought of Father standing outside the hut to welcome him each evening when he returned from work. This was his wonderful Father who took care of him; and this was his teacher who raised him up. How could he work apart from his Son sengnim? He thought about it, but no! He couldnít imagine it!
Again, Fatherís heart ached at the thought of separating from his dear disciple. But if they separated and went to several cities, they could meet more people. Godís work always came first.Mrs. Kang worked alone in Taegu for awhile. She witnessed to ministers a lot. She witnessed to other people. But she couldnít convince anyone to believe her when she told them about Father and The Divine Principle. Finally, Father decided to help her. He left Pusan.
Once he arrived in Taegu, it didnít take long for Father to make a big impression on the town, and once again he was in trouble. He just prayed and taught Godís message day in and day out and through the nights. This was his usual schedule. Then spirit world would send people to him.
Many of those who came were nice ladies, who became very inspired by Fatherís talks. Whenever they came, they had many spiritual experiences and became so excited they didnít want to end it and go home. They felt light and happy, and they just wanted to sing and pray and never stop. Many times, they stayed late into the night.
Soon, as you might expect, angry husbands were waiting by their doors when their wives tiptoed home late at night. It was just like the earlier days in Pyungyang when jealous husbands made so much trouble. Father felt worried for these ladies, but he couldnít tell them to stay away. God needed them.
Things got worse and worse. Then, one day, one of the women came to Fatherís place, and her face was bruised and swollen.
"What happened?" asked Father, afraid to hear the answer.
"My husband beat me because I came home so late last night," she answered.
"Oh, Iím so sorry!" Father said as tears came to his eyes. "Please be careful." He wanted to tell her to stay home, but he couldnít.
A few days later, another woman came with blood running out of her mouth. "Itís alright, Son sengnim. Donít worry about me," she cried, holding a towel to her mouth. "My husband doesnít understand why it is so important for me to come here."
Father just wept for her. He felt so sorry that these women had to suffer this way.
The next day, another woman arrived and her hair had been shaved completely off. She was bald! No Korean woman would ever let herself be seen with a bald head.
"My husband thought that if he shaved off my hair I would be too embarrassed to leave home," she explained, not knowing whether to laugh or cry. "But I would feel dead if I stayed away. Please donít make me go home." And he didnít.
The next day one of the women came with no dress on. She had thrown a blanket over her shoulders and had run like that to Fatherís place.
"My husband hid all my clothes so I would have to stay home," she explained. "But Iím here anyway!" There was a triumphant and determined tone in her voice.
Soon, the word was going around town that the women were running naked to Teacher Moon and staying all night with him. It was a huge scandal. Father couldnít witness to new people anymore or continue teaching, because the whole town seemed to believe he was an evil man.
Finally, in September 1953 Father told his followers, "Perhaps the rumors will die down if I leave Taegu for awhile. Please work together, all of you. Mrs. Kang will be in charge." He looked at her lovingly. "I will be depending on my hardworking missionary-my first pioneer-to bring results to this city."
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