Mother of Peace: Episode 05
Mother of Peace: And God Shall Wipe Away All Tears from Their Eyes
A Memoir by Hak Ja Han Moon
Chapter 1: My Cherished Lifelong Wish, pg 15-19
The oceans are a treasured resource
In every era of recorded history, humanity has experienced incredible pain. The most tragic period was also the most recent—the twentieth century. Wars raged ceaselessly across the global village, and countless good people lost their lives in that savagery. I was born during the Japanese occupation of Korea, and I experienced the aftermath of World War II and the Korean War. I still cannot forget the terrible things I witnessed as a small child.
Those times have passed, and now we are waging war against a complex enemy, the temptation to forget our responsibilities to our families and the natural environment and seek only personal comfort and convenience. Fortunately, we have a deep moral sense and wisdom, and practical methods by which we can work together to achieve God’s ideal.
All people hope that we can recover and sustain the oceans as the Heavenly Parent created them. Covering 70 percent of the Earth, the oceans contain immense resources. Like hidden treasures, they hold solutions for the dilemmas confronting the human race. I have emphasized the importance of the ocean on many occasions and have, together with my husband, suggested various approaches we might take. Accordingly, “The Ocean” was chosen as the theme for the first Sunhak Peace Prize. The Peace Prize Committee oversaw a strict process to select righteous, achievement-oriented leaders in this arena. Those selected as our laureates that year were Dr. M. Vijay Gupta of India and President Anote Tong of Kiribati, a small island nation in the South Pacific.
Dr. Gupta is a scientist who, concerned over persistent food shortages, led the “Blue Revolution” by developing fish farming technologies. He greatly contributed to relieving hunger among the poor by widely distributing these technologies in Southeast Asia and Africa.
President Anote Tong is a leading global advocate for the intelligent preservation and management of the marine ecosystem. It is predicted that much of his nation of Kiribati could be submerged in less than 30 years due to the rising sea level. In the face of such a crisis, President Tong took the lead toward protecting the ecosystem by creating the largest protected marine park in the world.
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For decades, my husband and I took on the task of ensuring that humanity moves into a future assured of abundant food supplies and pleasant, healthy environments. We advocated the free exchange of technology across national borders, and shared our vision that the oceans are a gift from God and the ultimate source of the world’s nutrition. Stable food sources and pure air, land and water are essential to world peace and the salvation of humankind.
Not confining ourselves to theoretical explanations, we devoted significant resources to practical projects in the real world. For half a century, Latin America was a major site for this investment of true love and human resources.
In the mid-1990s, with serious hearts, Father Moon and I traveled to the Pantanal region. The Pantanal is a vast wetland straddling the borders of Paraguay and Brazil. It is located precisely on the opposite side of the globe from our home country. There, we worked hand in hand with farmers and fishermen. Putting an end to food shortages begins by getting your hands dirty. Rather than give sermons from an air-conditioned pulpit, we worked under the scorching sun, neglecting to eat or rest. I vividly remember pondering environmental issues as I wiped beads of sweat from my face.
We launched various initiatives in the Pantanal region, and we have carried out countless other projects for the sake of humankind over the past 60 years. My nature compels me to give everything I have for the happiness of others, with no desire for recognition. I know who I am, the True Mother, the Mother of peace and God’s only begotten Daughter, and my mission is to live this way. To end Heavenly Parent’s sorrow I have dried the tears of strangers in need, considering this to be connected through threads of fate to the salvation of humanity.
The end of winter can be bitterly cold, but no matter how cold it is, when spring comes and its warmth envelops the Earth, we quickly forget that there ever was a winter. The bitter cold of humanity’s winter is receding and as Heavenly Parent’s warmth envelops the Earth, it will be forgotten. We feel this warmth at our Sunhak Peace Prize events, such as its second bi-annual convention that took place in Seoul on February 3, 2017.
That very busy day began by my personally welcoming hundreds of guests. These men and women hailed from 80 countries, representing various races, speaking many languages and following different paths of faith. I tried to create an environment in which everyone would freely greet the strangers around them and quickly become friends.
The warmth of spring was the setting in which I reminded my guests that many people in the world are friendless and hungry. Many families have been driven from their homelands. As a child refugee myself, I know there are no words to express the misery of being forced to flee one’s home due to the devastation of war. The Sunhak Peace Prize is an initiative through which I can issue the call for solutions to the painful plight of refugees and prevent livelihoods from being destroyed. I look for righteous but unheralded pioneers of peace, honor them, and strongly encourage them. The second set of Sunhak Peace Prizes, presented in 2017, went to two such people. Dr. Sakena Yacoobi and Dr. Gino Strada do not look like celebrities. They look like everyday people.
A gentlemanly middle-aged European with ruffled hair is a gifted surgeon and founder of an international medical relief organization. Dr. Gino Strada from Italy is a surgeon and humanitarian whose work over the past 28 years provided emergency medical care for more than 9 million refugees and victims of war in the Middle East and Africa.
A motherly woman with a sun-weathered face framed by a black hijab has brought thousands of young women hope. Dr. Sakena Yacoobi of Afghanistan is an educator, referred to as the “Afghan Mother of Education.” She has worked in Afghan refugee camps for more than 20 years, helping refugees and displaced people resettle. She has risked her life to teach, encouraging people to hope for a better tomorrow, even in the face of enormous obstacles. In response to her award, Dr. Yacoobi wrote to me in her clear handwriting, expressing her heartfelt gratitude:
Putting her own life in danger, Dr. Yacoobi continues to fight for women and children. While we are comfortably at home, eating warm meals, many are being driven from their homes. Uprooted, they live in pain and anguish, their lives completely shattered. This is the time to bring this sad tragedy to an end.