Let us be reborn into someone God wants us to be!
Unification Movement – Japan: After the Holy Marriage in 1960, True Parents paid a first visit to Japan in 1965. Commemorating the 50th anniversary of their visit, a special assembly was held at the church headquarters’ sanctuary on January 28th.
Mr. Haruyoshi Yano, Director of General Affairs Department, served as the emcee. The assembly was opened with the rendering of the Cheon Il Guk anthem, then opening prayer by Mr. Tomihiro Tanaka, Vice President of Unification Church of Japan.
The congregation could experience True Parents’ appearance and voice, as they watched a film of their visit in 1965. Mrs. Sonomi Kawanishi, representing Blessed Wives of Shibuya Church, read out True Father’s sermon “Align and unite with the center” originally given in the headquarters’ Sunday service on February 2th 1965.
In the sermon, True Father described Japanese spirit: “You know the Yamato Spirit. What is Yamato? It signifies the belief of a big home, a big family. Is the Japanese spirit really the Yamato Spirit? It responds to everything and becomes one. If that is the case, it can unify the world.”
He then prayed; “I pray they will remember this day we met in Japan, the words I spoke and everything that happened. May you protect and guide them so that their inconspicuous faith can reach God’s highest victorious realm!”
In his commemorative message, Rev. Tokuno called out to “Give a big hand to Heavenly Parent, True Parents and True Love for guiding and protecting the development of Unification Church of Japan for these 50 years since True Parents first came to Japan!” The congregation applauded with gratitude.
Rev. Tokuno shared that True Father had told him that he “tied a relationship of first love with Japan”. Rev. Tokuno said: “It probably occurred during True Father’s years as a student in Japan, around 21 years old when a person’s sensitivity gets very sharp.”
“In the aftermath of the war when most of the Korean people were vindictive to Japanese officials, True Father actually protected the police officer who had once tortured him, even arranging safe return to Japan of this officer’s family”, Tokuno said. He also reminded that True Father had loved Japan more than anyone else and blessed us. “We should never forget this as Japanese people”, he said.
Rev. Tokuno concluded: “Children of genuine filial piety are those who support their parents when they are most in need, taking up their cross unconditionally in order to lighten their parents’ burden. Let us unite into one as Unification Church of Japan, giving back joy and consolation to True Mother. We shall start a new 50 years!”
Then a benediction was offered by Rev. Tokuno, followed by cheers of oek-mansei led by Mr. Masaichi Hori, South Tokyo Parish Director. The service closed after pictures were taken of the entire congregation.
Commemorating the 50-year anniversary of True Parents’designation of the Yashima Holy Ground in Takamatsu City, Kagawa Prefecture, a special event was hosted by the Region 10 on February 4th. Rev. Yong Cheon Song, Chairman of the National Blessed Families Federation, was invited by Kagawa Parish for this occasion.
Around 500 members gathered at Takamatsu Church, whose sanctuary and the monitor room accommodated them.
After viewing the film commemorating the 50th anniversary of True Parents’ visit to Japan, Mr. Kiyoharu Takeuchi, Region’s Director of Family Education, reported on the history of Yashima Holy Ground as well as True Father’s words on the occasion.
Mr. Keisuke Kamijo, Regional Director, offered greetings. Then, beautiful rendering of two songs; ‘Devoted Heart’ and ‘Love for Heaven, People and Nation’ was performed by Tokushima Parish choir, filling the sanctuary with their pure voices.
Rev. Song offered a message full of love and consolation, from his heart to each and every member: “All of you are the finest gems to True Parents. Please remember that True Parents are always with you!” He added that “It is most important for ‘myself ’ to be reborn into a new being that God deems good.” He then passionately shared his own determination and challenge towards a victorious Vision2020.
Rev. Song sang ‘Uri nun Hanada (we are one)’, uplifting the spirits of the congregation. It was a moving new beginning for all.
“I felt the serious determination of True Parents.”
Toyoko Fujii (777 couples) of Takamatsu Church: This 50th anniversary reminded me of the serious and strong resolve of True Parents when they visited here. I shall devote my sincere heart into building our church and educating the second generation, because, as a church elder, our family has received much forgiveness and tolerance. I made a new determination to give something back by bringing victory.
“I made a determination to realizing God’s dream!”
N.Y. (a group leader) of Marugame Church, Kagawa Parish: When I think of True Father who risked his life to visit Takamatsu, designate the holy ground and pray for God, the humanity, Kagawa and Shikoku, I felt I was here thanks to the overwhelming love, endurance and forgiveness on the part of God and True Parents. Through Rev. Song’s message, I made a determination to become one of those who would realize God’s dream as the Fourth Israel.