Unification News for May 2001

The 1st Special 21 Day Workshop with Hyun Jin Nim

Michael Balcomb
May, 2001

Last year on his Inheritance and Development world tour, our elder brother Hyun Jin Nim traveled throughout Korea, Japan, Asia, Europe and Russia speaking about the crucial importance of preparing for the settlement age, and the importance of a reorientation of our movement and ourselves as we enter the Age of the 4th Adam. He told us that we needed to let go of all our historical baggage and make a fresh start in faith.

All too often though, the tight schedule of his tour and the need to keep on moving to new countries left many of us wanting to hear a great deal more. This year, that hope is being answered with the series of special workshops with Hyun Jin Nim on the topic "A New Paradigm of Leadership for the Settlement Age." The first was held at Le Pítit Bonheur, Quebec, Canada on March 9th Ė 29th, 2001.

The inspiration for these immensely significant workshops began on True Parentsí birthday earlier this year, when True Father called Hyun Jin Nim to the stage during an international leadersí meeting. As everyone now knows, Father then gave Hyun Jin Nim leadership authority over all members and leaders under the age of 40 (later expanded to include those born after January 1st, 1959.) A few weeks later, Hyun Jin Nim was inaugurated as the President of the Youth Federation for World Peace in recognition of his greatly increased area of responsibility.

Hyun Jin Nim is a man of action. He was determined to get moving right away on getting to know all the youthful members and leaders that were being entrusted to his care. How many are there, he wanted to know? Well Ö we have no idea. And so the request went out to every mission country of the worldóall 185 of themóto send in their lists of members and leaders who met the age criteria. That turned out to be a massive undertaking in itself, for we quickly found out that many countries did not keep an updated and corrected list of membership.

Right away, the lists started to come in from the field. They ranged from some pioneer nations, with only a handful of young leaders, to those countries where more than 95% of the membership is well under 40, and elder leaders are rare indeed. As the numbers increased from the hundreds into the thousands, our small staff in the World CARP office began to feel like the sorcererís apprenticeóhow do you make them stop?

It was already very clear that young members worldwide had a strong desire to connect with Hyun Jin Nim and to work together with him to develop True Parentsí providence. But there were a very significant number of replies as well from brothers and sisters whose 40th birthday was well in the rearview mirror, but who still hoped for a way to be included in that chosen group. The oldest was almost sixty!

The special workshop series begins

As the names flooded in, Hyun Jin Nim then announced his intention to hold special 21 day workshops for the key leaders, 300 or 400 at a time. The first workshop would be held in Canada, primarily for Korean and Japanese leaders but with representatives from every continent. The second workshop would be mostly for American and European leaders and would be held at UTS. The third workshop, just a week later, would be in Moscow for our Russian, East European and African brothers and sisters.

And so it was, that just over a month from receiving True Parentsí direction, the first special workshop came together under the direction of World CARP vice president Ken Bates and J-CARP President Eiji Tokuno, with Rev. Bong Tae Kim and Rev. Inamori, the YFWP presidents of Korea and Japan as advisors and participants.

Every continent sent at least one representative to the workshop, and all the continental directors came in person for the last week, right after the celebration of True Parentsí Day in Los Angeles. International FFWPU President Rev. Sun Jo Hwang attended through most of the workshop and surprised everyone one day by explaining that he had just taken a phone call from True Father, who was very interested in the progress of the workshop and had wanted a quick report!

For our workshop site we wanted somewhere completely new and different. God guided us to a remote youth camp in Quebec, nestled in the Laurentian Mountains, two hours north of Montreal, in a rugged area that has snow on the ground for five or six months a year. In the days before the workshop began, late winter snow storms blanketed the site in fresh snow. For some of our participants this was a special challengeófor example the Filipino and Thai members were coming from hot sultry weather to face several mornings when the mercury fell to 20 or 30 below.

Hyun Jin Nim loves any kind of challenge, and certainly enjoyed the abundantly cold weather. "The snow covering the ground," he said, "is like a blanket that will be thrown off with the coming of spring. You have to melt the snow in your mind and heart right now. Thatís why I intend to challenge you every step of the way! This workshop is going to be unlike any other workshop that you have been to. Let me tell you right now that this workshop is designed to challenge you mentally, spiritually, physically, emotionally and psychologically. What you make of it is up to you."

"Because I am taking responsibility as an elder brother, you are actually my younger brothers and sisters. I called you here to truly teach you about the will of True Parents, the responsibilities of True Parents and how you have to be responsible. Therefore, this has to be the first day of new life for every single one of you here. This has to be the first day of a new era for our movement! This has to be the first day in building a new paradigm of leadership for our movement so that all of Godís abundant blessing will come to our movement.

"This is the time for new beginning. A new beginning means that all the old habits, all the old concepts, and all the old understandings of the past has to go away. I made this workshop in order for you to receive a special grace and to give you a new opportunity, a new rebirth and renewal for the leadership of our movement under 40 years old. In one sense, all of you under 40, even though you might not be 2nd generation in terms of blessing, represent the 2nd generation. "

A deliberately challenging schedule

Every morning began with a 5:30am roll call for all participants outside the lecture hallóin the icy wind and cold! All the participants were divided into six groups of five teams of ten, and the roll call would continue until all members of a group were present and correct! Then and only then could the group go into the lecture hall for Hoon Dok Hae .

Iíd better confess that when I heard about this for the first time, it seemed like a crazy plan, sure to bring half the workshop down with flu, pneumonia or worseóbut I was wrong. Instead, the morning roll call generated a powerful spirit that extended through every day of the program, and almost no one was sick at all. Well, the spirit really is stronger than the body, it seems.

After a few days, the participants began to adapt themselves to the demanding schedule. After the 5:30 a.m. roll call and 6:00 a.m. Hoon Dok Hae, lectures were held all morning. Each afternoon, everyone was challenged to outdoor sports. Mostly novices, we found that cross-country skiing and snow shoeing were much more difficult than they looked, especially in temperatures usually below freezing even in the middle of the day. Then lectures and Hoon Dok Hae started up again from 4:30 p.m. to 11:00 p.m., and team and group meetings took the typical day well past midnight.

Fatherís new Hoon Dok Hae book of Completed Testament Age speeches, True Parents and World Peace, was the main staple of daily study, with most speeches covered at least twice. All readings, songs and most prayers were in Korean, our mother tongue. Rev. Ken Sudo was the chief lecturer for the first part of the workshop, giving 50 hours of detailed content about the Word of the Completed Testament Age, True Parentsí life course and the responsibility of the Blessed Couples in the age of the 4th Adam, spiced with his own testimonies and experiences learning from True Parents.

We were also glad to welcome many guest lecturers and speakers. Among them was Pres. Sang Kwon Park, who spoke at great length about True Parentsí work in North Korea, bringing a fascinating slide show presentation that gave many of us our first glimpse of the work going on in True Parentsí homeland. Mr. Dong Moon Joo, the outgoing president of YFWP, spoke of the investment made in the Washington Times and of his hopes for the new administration. Dr. Tom Walsh shared about the IIFWP and the development of WANGO and the future of the United Nations.

Perhaps the greatest interest was reserved for the World CARP presentations prepared by each of the eight major chapter presidents in attendance. I think participants found these were particularly interesting and relevant because they demonstrated some of the major changes that have taken place in World CARP in the last year under Hyun Jin Nimís leadership. The workshop participants were introduced to the new World CARP slogan, ĎThere is no such thing as number two, only Number Oneí and adopted it as their own motto.

Midway through the workshop, two respected church elders Rev. Su Won Chang and Rev. C. S. Ahn were asked by Hyun Jin Nim to give their testimony about working with Father back in the early days when our movement was beginning. "Even as we plan revolutionary change," he said, "We always need to respect our root."

Getting back to the root of our faith

Hyun Jin Nim led the workshop through several fiery speeches calling upon everyone present to make a new start and recommitment. "I have emphasized the necessity for the shedding of old skin, and that we should shed our old habits, old concepts and old ideas," he said, "so that you can have rebirth, renewal and new life."

"All of you gathered here are the so-called top leaders of Korea, Japan and the rest of the world under 40. That means it is basically through you that the substantial foundation for the Kingdom of Heaven has to be built! Yet, when I look at you, I realize that you do not truly understand what your responsibility is or what your mission is."

"To know that, we must ask ourselves what is the true mission of True Parents? When we talk about things such as building the substantial kingdom, what does that mean? If you cannot answer this fundamental question, how can you say you are fulfilling Godís Will? This is the problem. We need to reflect more deeply on this fundamental tenet of our faith."

"The answer to that question can be opened and unlocked in the first couple pages of the Divine Principle, which has been Fatherís core, essential message ever since he began his ministry. What is the continuous theme that Father always touches upon? True Family! The original purpose of God was to establish the substantial True Family. Fatherís original mission was the substantial salvation of mankind through the foundation of true parents and true family, whereby the lineage of man can be transformed under the dominion of Heaven."

"What makes our movement unique and different from the rest of the different religions of the world? What makes us different is that we are engrafted as blessed couples into the true lineage of God. That means we are to be under the direct dominion of God! If we do not recognize this, if this is not something that we understand deeply, then we are no different from any other Christian congregation, no different from any other different religious congregation out there!"

This stirring call to repentance and renewal was the guiding spirit of the whole workshop from beginning to end. All of the top leaders of the movement who came shared their support and renewed appreciation of the challenge being laid down to the leaders present.

Every participant gets a grade

A new feature of this workshop was that every participant was regularly examined and graded. For a start, there were three intense Divine Principle examinations which combined made up a third of the final score. Additionally, each group leader regularly graded each participant in terms of his or her attitude, attendance, and team spirit.

Finally, the results of several day-long "Special Challenge" team sport competitions were included as part of ones final grade. One day, there was a triathlon of cross country skiing, snow-shoeing and an assault / obstacle courseóquite a task for almost 300 novices. Another day was "Wilderness Survival Day," in which each team had to make a field shelter that could keep a team member alive overnight in subzero temperatures. Another challenge was the dreaded "Monster Hike" over seven mountains through chest-deep snow.

The combination of academic, spiritual and physical training was ultimately very refreshing and produced dramatic changes in the team spirit and atmosphere--a difference that Hyun Jin Nim noticed immediately when he returned at the end of the workshop.

"It seems as if everybody is coming together as a team," he said "Since everyone is coming together as a team, there is great hope for what we can accomplish in the future. The first time I talked to you I looked at the frozen lake and I said that this is the time that the blossom of spring should sprout .You now have to set the precedent for a new type of leadership that will come out of this workshop.

"As leaders of our movement, in what position do you stand? We stand in the Abel position. Until now, few people understood the real meaning of being an Abel. The blessing was not given for Abel alone, but for Cain. We always talked about Cain uniting with Abel. But Abel, as a true leader, also has responsibility.

"When I talk about the new leadership paradigm, Iím talking about a new culture of heart, Iím talking about a true leader, a true Abel. Before we talk about all the substantive changes, we have to understand what it means to be a true leader."

The new pledge of leadership

In the spirit of becoming a True Abel, each participant was invited to sign a pledge of recommitment and rededication as a leader before being considered ready to graduate. This pledge, which was written personally by Hyun Jin Nim, is a concise but moving summary of the expectations of leadership in the age of settlement and reads as follows:

As a leader of the Settlement Age having successfully completed Hyun Jin Nimís Special 21 Day Workshop, I make the following Pledge to God, True Parents, and True Family:

1. I, as an ambassador of Godís sovereignty, shall substantiate His Will with honor and dignity.

2. I shall attend God, True Parents and True Family with absolute faith, absolute love and absolute obedience.

3. I, as a central blessed family, shall eternally honor and maintain
Godís lineage inherited from True Parents and True Family.

4. I, standing in the position of true Abel, shall not abuse this entrusted authority for a selfish purpose, but shall sacrifice myself for the greater good.

5. I, as a true steward, shall not violate the trust given to me in the management and use of all public assets, and I shall at all times be responsible and accountable.

6. I will sincerely guide the Second Generation to enter Godís direct dominion as forerunners of the movement for the culture of Original Heart.

7. I shall liberate God, True Parents, True Family and all humanity by substantially building Godís Fatherland.

8. I, as a leader and a central blessed family, shall uphold the true, universal and absolute laws of Heaven and Earth in the Era of the Fourth Adam and the Age of the Second Generation.

I shall constantly remind myself of my solemn promise to uphold this pledge and ultimately become a true son who inherits the legacy of True Parents.

The signing of this pledge was in many ways the high point of the workshop. Before anyone put pen to paper, Jin Man Kwak, World CARP vice-president, explained in detail about each point of the pledge. Then Hyun Jin Nim reminded everyone of the holy and solemn commitment that we were making together with him. It was a profound and moving moment.

And then, all too soon, the workshop was drawing to a close. The graduation ceremony was held that same afternoon. Out of 282 participants and staff, the top ranking 5% were recognized and awarded certificates of distinction. The winning teams were presented with commemorative medals, and all graduating participants received the all-important certificates of completion announcing that they were qualified to be leaders in the settlement era.

There was a joyful closing banquet held, presided over by Hyun Jin Nim and Jun Sook Nim, whose Blessing Anniversary coincided with the end of the workshop. Photographs were taken, songs were sung and pledges affirmed. Then the whole group moved out into the still icy night air to hold a solemn candle-lighting ceremony, to symbolize the inheritance of new light and life from True Parents and True Family. Fireworks soared above the frozen lake as three cheers of Mansei echoed off the distant mountains.

Testimonies

Tomohiro Miyamoto (Japan): Hyun Jin Nimís speech at the workshop in Canada was a new beginning. This is a totally new responsibility for me, and I am not settled yet. However, I will make desperate effort to accomplish.

Chanwook Yoon (Korea): I was assigned to a new place and will make a fresh start. The workshop was the turning point for me and I will do my best to win!

Sachio Shinozaki (Japan): I feel that God, True Parents and Hyun Jin Nim have a great expectation towards CARP in this turning point in providential history. I am excited and hopeful that we can build the Kingdom of Heaven on earth on the worldwide level with the leaders who connected here through the Canada workshop.

Alexander Yershov (Russia): The message is very profound and very timely, and therefore moving. Any member of our movement who is sincere notices a certain inconsistency between the life and teachings of our True Parents on one side and our daily practices on the other. It is a very alarming fact, but when somebody like Hyun Jin Nim talks about this, it gives a lot of hope to our movement.

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