Mother of Peace: Episode 48
Mother of Peace: And God Shall Wipe Away All Tears from Their Eyes
A Memoir by Hak Ja Han Moon
Chapter 8: The Mother Builds The Family, The Family Builds The World, pg 234-239
In the autumn of 2018, we held a Rally of Hope at the Cheongshim Peace World Center, an arena with a capacity of 20,000 located in our HJ Cheonwon complex, east of Seoul. During a members’ testimony session, Keiko Kobayashi, a Japanese wife living in Korea’s South Jeolla Province with a Korean husband, came to the podium to share her heart. In 1998, she said, while living a comfortable life as a public official in Japan, she applied for the matching and was matched and then blessed in marriage to a Korean man. She moved to Korea, expecting that they would live happily as newlyweds. However, her hopes for happiness were dashed because her husband suffered from epilepsy. Although he was usually calm, when under stress he was prone to epileptic fits. He grew lethargic and became indifferent about life in general. Nothing could inspire him.
Keiko thought seriously about ending the marriage and returning to Japan. But first she decided to put her mind at ease by traveling to our Cheongpyeong Training Center to offer a week of prayer and devotions before making her final decision. She had already had many good experiences at this Center, participating in workshops with hundreds of members from Korea, Japan and around the world. For several days, she clung to God, prayed to Him, and turned her ears toward Heaven. God heard her prayer, and spoke to her: “My beloved daughter! Just as I love you as my daughter, I love your husband as my son. Can you not take care of him on My behalf, as my poor son whose body is weak and who is living in loneliness?”
Hearing this, she said, she broke down in tears of repentance and sincerely asked God for forgiveness. She returned home, opened her heart to her husband and learned to love him. Soon thereafter, God rewarded her by giving them a lovely son and changes began taking place in her husband. His health improved, he was able to get a job, and the family stabilized. Now they are living happily together, raising five sons and daughters. This is what Keiko shared with the audience.
A few days after that rally, I convened a meeting at Cheongpyeong with more than 4,000 Japanese wives of Korean husbands; they had gathered from all parts of Korea. I gave small presents to those among them who, as luck would have it, had their birthday on that day. I asked them if they had ever received a birthday gift from their husbands. Most of them answered that they did not celebrate birthdays at all because they were too busy with the strenuous task of making a living in rural areas. Yet not one of them was discontented. They testified that their lives were dedicated to God’s will and that when they face difficulties their bond with True Parents strengthens them.
I treasure these women all the more because they endured and sacrificed themselves as representatives of their nation. They gathered in Seoul in 2019 to pay respects to the spirit of Ryu Gwan-sun, a girl of 18 who, in 1920, gave her life as a martyr in protest of the Japanese occupation of Korea. Our Japanese sisters gathered in their kimonos to pray for this young woman martyr for independence and to ask for forgiveness on behalf of Japan.
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Happiness does not come to us when we have everything. It comes mysteriously, when we have seemingly lost everything yet still feel gratitude. When a woman marries a man with a disability or who is of a different religious background or racial minority, that is where God can work miracles. True love transcends historical divisions that resulted from sin and allows happiness and heavenly fortune to find a home. The blessed marriage tradition places true love above considerations of appearance and social status. A person who develops true character and a warm heart will make a good spouse. When you meet such a person and give him or her all your love, yours becomes a worthy life indeed.
The marriage Blessing Ceremony of the Unification Church movement is the most sacred and precious event in human history. Why? It is because the Blessing imparts Heavenly Parent’s spiritual reality and allows a man and a woman to embody it as one flesh. It is the veritable marriage supper of the Lamb of which the Bible speaks. Our larger Blessing Ceremonies gather tens of thousands of couples, but there have been some with just three or four, and once in a while my husband and I have blessed just one couple. Thousands of our representative blessed central families in Korea and throughout the world have also officiated Blessing Ceremonies.
Millions of couples have received the marriage Blessing. You will find these blessed families in every country. Couples composed of a Korean groom and Japanese bride, an American groom and German bride, a Senegalese groom and Filipino bride, all live in happiness. They overcome differences in language and lifestyle. The foundation for this is in the vows that blessed couples make during the Blessing Ceremony, that the husband and the wife will share true love and live in accordance with God’s will.
A vision of true womanhood
There is an old saying in the West, “Behind every great man is a great woman.” It is true. The wife is necessary for the completion and perfection of the husband. Without his wife, a husband cannot be whole. A society in which womanhood does not complete and perfect manhood cannot give rise to a peaceful and just world.
Women need to fulfill the mission of the wife as well as the mission of the mother. Both are essential to create a peaceful and just world. The mother gives birth to children and is called to raise them through their formative years. That is a right and responsibility given primarily to women.
I have always been saddened by the reality of this world in which so often husbands fail to honor their wives, and children fail to honor their mothers. In every age, righteous women have carried out their missions as wives and mothers in the face of hardships. Following the path of women saints of all religious traditions, the women of our Unification movement, in response to the heart of True Parents, have attended God while shedding their sweat and tears throughout our global village. True Parents revealed the truth of the human Fall, and liberated women to fulfill their responsibilities as true daughters, true wives and true mothers. In this age, by God’s providence, what was previously impossible has been made possible.
Women are independent beings who represent God’s feminine aspect and thus make men whole. It is time for women to rise above the popular trend of trying to improve their status by imitating men. This only casts the relationship between men and women as one of competition in a culture that ignores their God-given and God-incarnating uniqueness. God designed men and women for a relationship in which each gives their divine and unique gifts to the other, and each receives the other’s divine and unique gifts with true awareness and love. Women are not just men’s assistants any more than men are women’s assistants. Women and men need each other’s protection. Through the true man-woman relationship, each perfects the other and becomes one with the other. Each is a part of the other in the creation of a greater whole, embodied as a child, as a family, as a nation, and as the world.
At this time, women need to follow Heaven’s way, attend True Parents, and become central figures who together with men bring forth a new world based on the culture of heart. We need to rid ourselves of fallen traits and realize the original culture, bringing to fruition the nation and world of goodness and love long sought by humanity. This begins at the center of the world—the home—where each woman embraces her husband as the embodiment of true love, and raises their sons and daughters with the heart of a true parent.
Based upon God’s providence, my husband and I have called women to take the lead in the creation of families that embody God’s original plan—families in which the wife lives for her husband, the husband for his wife, the parents for their children and children for their parents. Such a family will overflow with love and God’s blessings will come to stay. Women need to walk the path of a true mother and, at the same time, the path of a true wife and the path of a true daughter. Women have the magical power to create harmony and to soften hearts. Brides build bridges. The world of the future can be a world of reconciliation and peace, but only if it is based on the maternal love and affection of women. This is the true power of womanhood. The time has come for the power of true womanhood to save the world.