Mother of Peace: Episode 38
Mother of Peace: And God Shall Wipe Away All Tears from Their Eyes
A Memoir by Hak Ja Han Moon
Chapter 6: Creating the Road to One World, pg 182-187
Seventeen years earlier, on July 1, 1973, we had declared that one day we would “march to Moscow.” As we fought to overthrow communism, we had envisioned holding a rally in Red Square, and in October that year we announced this to our members. Most were enthusiastic, though the prophecy reminded some of the dream-like visions of Don Quixote. Sunburst, one of our church bands, turned our vision into a song, “Red Square,” with the immortal refrain, “Must Go to Moscow!” Although the accomplishment of that goal took longer than we wished, my husband and I never forgot our commitment. We believed that winning the Soviet leadership’s heart in Moscow’s Kremlin Palace would tip the scale toward liberating God and all of humanity.
Our Victory Over Communism work over the years was ultimately not about a political system, nor was it a public relations strategy to gain support from anti-communists. At its root was, and is, the question of “God or no God.” The real purpose of our struggle is to liberate the communist world—and the West as well—from atheistic materialism. During the Cold War, most people in the free world, including the journalists on our fact-finding tours, had no idea what life was like under communism. Others in a position to know chose to turn a blind eye, hesitating to take action out of fear. In the meantime, hundreds of millions in the communist world endured dire circumstances, some not knowing where their next day’s food would come from. To save these suffering millions, our Heavenly Parent pushed my husband and me to win over the Soviet Union—and opened the path by which we could do so.
Engaging the leadership of the Soviet Union was certainly no simple task. President Gorbachev had been implementing gradual reform, but he had to deal with an entrenched bureaucracy programmed to maintain a belligerent posture as the leading nation of the communist world. Hidden behind an Iron Curtain, the Soviet Union projected the image of a powerful, iron-fisted empire.
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A few days before we departed for Moscow, my husband and I sat down to discuss our plan with senior members of the Unification Church. Some of them tried to dissuade us, arguing that it was too dangerous for us, as notable opponents of communism, to walk into the communist stronghold. No one could derail my husband’s and my determination, however. Nonetheless, my husband, recognizing the seriousness of the matter, was considering the future. As he looked into the face of each and every one there, he said something unexpected: “It’s time to decide who will lead the movement when I am not here.”
All voices were silenced. Again he looked at the church leaders, one by one, and then spoke with care and gravity. “Even if I am not here, it is fine as long as Mother is present.”
His statement conferred on me the serious position of co-founder of the Unification Church. Everyone was surprised at what Father Moon was saying, but I just listened quietly. Having accepted the mission of God’s only begotten Daughter and Mother of peace, for 30 years I had done my utmost to help my husband at the forefront of God’s providence to save and guide the world. Now he had made it clear that Heaven’s authority is equally with father and mother, husband and wife. It seemed he was making the announcement at that moment in case anything unfortunate happened in Moscow.
Later, Father Moon decided to share the same message with thousands of New York area members who had gathered to honor the 1990 Parents’ Day with us. In his keynote address, he set into the public record that which he had stated to our leadership. There in the New Yorker Hotel, he declared, “Even when I am alone, I represent True Parents. And the same goes for Mother. When she is alone, she represents True Parents. Now there is nothing to worry about. Fundamentally I am the first founder of the church and Mother is the second founder. Until today, women have followed men, but from now on, they are on a horizontally even footing.”
This was not a one-time statement from my husband. At a meeting on June 14, 1991, True Father proclaimed his gomyeong at Clearstone Deer Park Lodge in Canada, in the presence of representative Japanese women leaders. The gomyeong is a final decree a king leaves for his subjects before passing away. In this proclamation, my husband declared that after his ascension, I would continue our God-given mission and that the Japanese woman leaders should take responsibility to support me.
On November 27, 1994, at Belvedere Training Center in New York, Father Moon again announced my public mission as the movement’s second founder. At that time, the educational program for 160,000 Japanese women and significant events in certain nations had concluded, so my role was expanding. On that day, I resolved in front of members, “Let’s all pledge to become the family that will unite and establish the traditions of the True Parents.”
In April 1990, a few days after that Parents’ Day celebration, my husband and I, with our eldest son Hyo-jin, arrived in Moscow. The venue was the 11th World Media Conference and the 1st Summit Council for World Peace, sponsored by the World Media Association and the Association for the Unity of Latin America (AULA). During the conference, President Mikhail Gorbachev invited the participating world leaders to the Kremlin Palace. I was the only woman included on the invitation list and was treated very graciously. My husband and I awarded President Gorbachev the Grand Cross Medal for Freedom and Unification, which was presented by Ambassador Jose Maria Chaves, Chairman of AULA. We held President Gorbachev’s hand and offered a simple benediction: “God bless you, Mr. President.”
Of course, it was absolutely unacceptable under the communist regime to pray for God’s blessing in the office of the president of the Soviet Union, the epicenter of the ideology-driven atheist state. Nonetheless, President Gorbachev was warm with us and struck a friendly tone in our chat after the prayer. “Mrs. Hak Ja Han Moon,” he remarked, “I do like your traditional Korean dress. It looks beautiful on you.”
I answered with a smile, “The First Lady Raisa always looks beautiful, too! Women all over the world respect her. I’m looking forward to the pleasure of meeting Mrs. Gorbachev tomorrow at the Little Angels’ performance. My husband told me you are a handsome man, and I can see it’s true.” Through our conversation the atmosphere became friendly. President Gorbachev’s smile was truly warm and bright; I had the impression that we all were flying on the clouds. I thought, “This is the power of prayer and the hand of God.”
As the meeting went on, my husband did not hesitate to advise President Gorbachev. “The success of the Soviet Union depends on whether you put God at the center or not,” he said, and he was emphatic: “Atheism will lead to nothing but self-destruction and disaster.” Father Moon told President Gorbachev that the only way for the Soviet Union to survive was for Russia to continue his economic and political reforms and to allow freedom of religion. President Gorbachev’s face showed he was well aware of the enormity of Father Moon’s advice, yet he could not help but receive what we said. Never before had anyone said anything like that in the Kremlin. Looking back, I feel confident to say that the words we exchanged at that moment changed the history of the world. I truly felt that heaven and earth were listening to every word with bated breath.