Letter to Blessed Families from Mrs. Setsuko Sakurai (43 couples’ blessing 1969)

To Blessed families

Repentance and prayer for True Family as a Unification family – Going beyond the era of split and conflict –

Recently, a book called “The Split of the Unification Church” was published. Putting aside whether the content is true or false, no one can deny that our church is not one and has various “sects”. Seeing this reality, many brothers and sisters must have felt deep pain in their hearts and thirst in their souls.

Originally, we were a family bound under God and True Parents. Therefore, we called each other “the Unification Family (shik-ku)”. Even if our languages and cultures were different as well as our skin color, we are still one family under common parents. Therefore, our movement was a movement to bind the divided world into one, going beyond the differences of sects and denominations as well as thoughts and cultures. Where are we heading now?

I do not want to promote further separation and add oil to the fire of this struggle. Nonetheless, I do not want to sweep the problem under the rug, stay away from the reality and keep silent either since I do not think that such attitude is what Father wants.

I have already become 78 years old. I am no longer a leader that leads others from the front and I no longer have such power.  I am not sure how much meaning it would have if an old person like me speaks out. However, as a person who loves True Parents, True Family and our church and as a person who sincerely believes in the day when this movement can be united once more, just as other brothers and sisters around the nation who love and believe just the same, I would like to honestly write what I have been thinking for several years.

1. God’s will is to substantiate the True Family – the fruit of 6000 years of Restorational history

What was God’s ideal of creation? Needless to say, it was to substantiate an ideal family centered on God and a worldwide family under God by expanding from the axis of True Family. 6000 years of Restorational history led by God after He lost the human ancestors, Adam and Eve, was to restore the original Adam and Eve, namely the True Parents, on the earth and to substantiate a world on the basis of “True Family” as its core.

God’s love, life and lineage bear fruit in True Family, when True Children’s life is conceived in Mother’s womb. Blessing ceremonies were always held when a True Child was in Mother’s womb, starting with the first three couples blessing. That meant that blessed families inherited true love, life and lineage from True Children. In other words, it was due to True Children that we, blessed families, were enabled to attend True Parents as our parents, even though we were complete strangers in terms of lineage.

Therefore, True Father repeatedly taught us that we have to unite with True Children in love and that our lineage is changed to True Parents’, as the twin brothers and sisters of True Children, when we become one in heart with True Children in longing for True Parents.

“We set the condition of rebirth by uniting with True Parents as well as True Children born from True Parents. . . . Those in Cain position have to unite with True Parents and sinless True Children who are Abel. By uniting with them, we receive the same grace as restored children. (Japanese version God’s Will and the World, P140)

Without the settlement of the True Family ideal, it is impossible to expand God’s ideal of creation in heaven and earth. The reason why True Parents placed True Children in public position and wished for their victory is because the settlement of three generations in True Family and the victorious foundation is the very axis of Cheon Il Guk, and also because we can substantiate Cheon Il Guk only by uniting with the central axis heartistically and by expanding True Family’s realm of victory horizontally. Even if the church collapses, God’s providence will continue, as long as True Family is there. But God’s providence will end once the True Family collapses.

2. Cain Children and Abel Children – The cause of split and conflict

For a long time, we have been attending True Parents as our absolute Abel. Father, however, said repeatedly from 1970s and 1980s “Because True Children are still small, I am coming down to the Abel-type position to guide you. But your true Abel are my children.” Blessed families’ original Abel are True Children. Through the unity of Abel children and Cain children, True Parents can be settled and the providence can proceed.

As we entered the 2000s, we finally entered the age in which True Parents finally stood on the parents’ position and True children carried providential responsibility as the owners of God’s will. In the final stage of providence to substantiate Cheon Il Guk, the center of internal providence must have been the “unity of Children”. I feel, however, that we only looked at True Parents as we had previously, wanting to make Parents happy and being single-minded with the desire to be loved by Parents. From True Children’s perspective, we may not have seemed like servants but as very immature and self-centered small children.

All True Children have original nature from birth and are especially sensitive in knowing true love. When they sensed wrong attitude or wrong motivation, they probably could not overlook them silently. There must have been occasions in which they guided us strongly from the elder brother position. When facing such situations, we tended to be influenced by archangelic emotions and feel, “We were with True Parents even before you were born.”

When conflicts took place between Abel and Cain, Father always scolded and reprimanded Abel children. It is not imaginable that Father does not wish for his own children’s victory. Yet, as long as Cain accuses Abel, Father cannot acknowledge, love or embrace Abel Children.

Many leaders say, “In the end, True Children could not unite with True Parents and be absolutely obedient to them.” If that was so, however, what happened to our responsibility as Cain in front of True Children? Is it not when we see them with very humanistic eyes, apply our own judgment standard, criticize and accuse them that the door to Satan opens?

The conflict between Abel and Cain spread to the conflict among True Children. Satan would attack True Children until they are completely wounded and would accuse True Parents by pointing at True Children’s problems, saying “How can you say you are a True Family? How can you say you have victory as True Parents in such a situation?”

3. Truth in Hyun Jin Nim – In the middle of persecution and accusation for 7 years

It was when I heard the news about UCI that I felt that some serious problem was happening in True Family. The news said that Hyun Jin Nim rebelled against Father’s order, acted on his own and took over UCI which was Father’s providential foundation. This was in 2009 which was the time to go to the providential pinnacle of the Foundation Day victory in 2013.

Hyun Jin Nim was a child who was always straightforward and sometimes spoke his opinion directly to Father. But he must have been at a deeper level of loving True Parents and being passionate for God’s will. Therefore, the incidents about Hyun Jin Nim were hard for me to understand.

What was more surprising and serious, however, was the following church-wide campaign to criticize Hyun Jin Nim. No matter what reasons there might have been, when people accused and expelled an Abel Child as “fallen Adam”, it was too excessive and revealed Satanic motives and emotions behind the behavior.

Furthermore, who and what department would benefit and claim victory when the church took the internal problem out to the public, bringing the issue to court and advertising it on media? If it really was “True Parents direction”, what kind of report and explanation would encourage Parents to make such judgment? It was completely against the way True Parents lived as well as the ideology of true love.

In the church, it was said that it all began with Hyun Jin Nim not following Father. For sure, the general view of our faith might have been that we should absolutely follow Father’s decision once it was made, even if the decision was based on false reports.  Many thought that another path might have opened if Hyun Jin Nim abandoned his thinking and followed Father.

But can we accuse Hyun Jin NIm if he acted as a true child with the motivation to fulfill his responsibility regardless of misunderstandings and persecution with deeper consideration for Father’s will than anyone else? Some might say “No, if that was the case, he would not have taken the UCI foundation.” Surely, as long as Father is on top, moving the organization without Father’s permission cannot be permitted. But if there were serious problems at that time as people on Hyun Jin Nim’s side say, and if Hyun Jin Nim was single-minded to protect God’s will which Father upheld and the providential foundation, how should we think about it?

It is not easy to discern what is true and what is false in the midst of various information. Yet, if there was any standard of judgment for us, there cannot be anything else but the words of the Divine Principle. We would have to pray and seek Heaven’s will and truth with truth and divine spirit.

When people see the words and actions, they can see the motivation and heart behind them. For the last 7 years, what words and actions did Hyun Jin Nim show? Was it an anti-church movement? Was it criticism and grudge against True Parents and blessed families? Was it un-principled activities against God’s will?

I am not someone who knows Hyun Jin Nim deeply. But what I can feel from his words and actions is his unchanging loyalty to God and True Parents, firm conviction to the words of Divine Principle, desperate passion for God’s will and love as elder brother towards blessed families.

4. True Mother’s situation – For True Mother to be True Mother

Since 2009, as the problems around True Family got bigger, Father passed away in September 2012. It was as if he took on all the problems of True Family and blessed families on his own shoulders. How inspiring was Mother who stood firm, when worldwide members got so shocked that they lost words and were at a loss? However, the situations surrounding Mother seemed to be getting worse despite of this.

Not only the problems of In Jin Nim, Hyung Jin Nim, Kook Jin Nim, Cheong Pyung, but also True Mother’s words themselves are causing a big stir among the nationwide members. Even if Father has mentioned the word “only-begotten-daughter” before, the teaching that True Mother was born sinless after the change of blood lineage does not coincide with what Father taught.

I do not want to criticize True Mother. How grateful we should be for True Mother in this age and how long has Heaven waited for True Mother to appear? . . . I suppose that True Mother is trying to convey her special value to us. But when Mother’s words have subtle mismatch with Father’s, or when we receive the impression that she is emphasizing and raising Mother’s value more than Father’s, many members cannot help but feel restlessness.

If someone proposed the idea of “dignifying True Mother to support members when True Father is no longer there”, it is wrong. Members worldwide are not looking for “True Father” in True Mother. What we would like to see is for True Mother to be “True Mother”. We long for True Mother as the True Mother who supports True Father by his side, testifying to True Father’s life and words as the person who lived with Him more than anyone else, and embraces children with love.

We did not love True Mother due to her birth or background of birth. We love True Mother because she supported True Father no matter what difficulty she faced, and stood as the true mother of humanity while feeling pain when seeing the adolescent children’s anguish. True Children must be wishing to attend such Mother as well.

For 7 years while persecuted, Hyun Jin Nim never attacked Father or Mother nor tried to humiliate them. Yet, he is firmly opposing Mother on talking about herself as the “only-begotten-daughter” and is trying to stop it. It is because he is seriously concerned that such claim would destroy her.

Is it not due to male children, who can represent Father’s mission, not being around True Mother that leaves her to emphasize her position as the person of authority in place of Father. If that was the case, talking about the “only-begotten-daughter” would have the reverse effect.

What we, blessed families, want to see is the True Mother who embraces True Children with deep love. If Cain’s accusation and criticism toward True Children are hindering Mother from loving and embracing True Children, I would like to ask not to listen to such words.

There must be problems in True Children’s deeds. But they must be more seriously thinking about Parents than any other leader surrounding Mother.

5. Future and possibility of Unification movement – The light of hope has not disappeared yet

It is said as a common view in the society that a religion cannot come back to its original status once divided. But if that is the case, we are no different from the religions in the society. If we cannot handle the division inside ourselves, how could we unite the world religions and thoughts?

If I say, “Let’s unite beyond the conflicts!” Both sides would throw the arrow of criticism.“ Unification Church would say, “There is no other way but for True Children to come back. In order for that to happen, the only way is to let them deplete the assets and let their followers disappear.” On the other hand, UCI side or Sanctuary Church says, “Family Federation is a sinking ship like Sewol. We cannot survive if we stay in Unification Church. Unless the followers disappear, Mother cannot notice the danger.”

Both sides say that “there is no middle position.” In case of the Unification Church, if anyone says that we should unite or something to defend True Children, that person would immediately be classified as part of a “sect”. Those who have a severe perspective would say, “Because the war already took place, we have to fight to the end in law suits or whatever method.” But there is no winner in war. The split and conflict, which started from disbelief, cannot be solved by “power”. As long as this problem continues, there would be no future in Unification movement. Do we have to repeat the path that past religions walked?

We know that there is a gap that is hard to fill in this movement currently. But if God is alive and working, there must be hope. There must be a way for us to be one. I am seeing that possibility in Hyun Jin Nim. If Hyun Jin Nim disbelieved True Parents, left the way of God’s will and lived for his own sake, as others say, there would be no hope. And God cannot be there if Hyun Jin Nim resented his position, challenged Parents’ authority and bared his fangs to his younger brothers and Cain children.

The reason I see the possibility in Hyun Jin Nim is because I think that what Hyun Jin Nim desperately tried to protect was not his own position or seat but God’s will and the direction of providence. I am certain that he would try to lead this movement correctly, supporting True Mother and embracing younger brothers and sisters if True Mother trusts him and puts him in the center.

In Japan, there are conscientious leaders as well as second generation who are serious about re-building the movement. There are also sincere members who loved God and True Parents, setting aside their own life, position and circumstances, and tried to live for God’s will and walked the path with tears. If they know the truth and stand on the right Principled perspective, we can end this battle without a winner, and those who try to do the will of God will stand up.

I would like to say “The light of hope has not been extinguished yet” to all the brothers and sisters who are struggling and wondering what their life was about by looking at the split in which the barriers are built among families, saying “this way, that way”.

 

6. The responsibility that we should fulfill – Let’s repent and pray together

From where can we start to solve the current situation?  If the series of problems really happened between True Parents and True Children and if the problem was the conflict among True Children, the problem would have to be solved there. But how could Satan invade to True Family which Heaven should protect?

The reason why Satan could give the three temptations to Jesus in the wilderness of Judah was because the foundation of John the Baptist was lost. And the reason why Jesus had to go the path of the cross in the end was because the twelve disciples’ foundation collapsed. The reason why Father had to go to the Heung Nam prison was because the foundation of Christianity collapsed. And the primary cause of many True Children receiving various trials, going through difficulty, and True Family paying a heavy price is because we, blessed families, could not make the proper foundation.

Even though this is the case, most of the members would not feel that this is their own doing. However, due to the mistake of a group of leaders at the time, Jewish people ended up carrying the entire responsibility of having put Jesus in the path of the cross. Even though Christianity has the 2000 years of tearful history to live with God and has a large number of faithful Christians around the world, they lost the qualification of the chosen people as True Parents’ foundation due to the unfaithfulness of a few central figures.

Seen from such viewpoint, how strict and merciless is God’s providence? And how serious is the fact that unity was not achieved in the Cheon Il Guk age when our unity with True Children was desired more than any other time. Of course, I am not saying that True Children are faultless. But whatever circumstance was there, we should have been the ones who sincerely attended them as our Abel and elder brother. If Father misunderstood something, should our position not have been to say to True Father, “It is not correct”?  Yet we did the opposite.

There must have been many cases in which Hyun Jin Nim’s fault was pointed out, he was accused for things that are difficult to comprehend, and the trust relationship with True Parents was damaged. Does Satan not accuse? Satan tried to lead True Family to destruction by exercising the maximum power. Some say, “If he only united with True Mother, everything would be solved.” Principle, however, does not say so. The problem was our “attitude towards True Children”, not our “attitude towards True Parents”.

From providential point of view, we would not be able to avoid the accusation by Satan. But when Abraham desperately prayed for mediation for the towns of Sodom and Gomorrah, God promised that He would not destroy them if ten righteous men were there. Are there not ten righteous men in the Unification Family? What I would like to do is to find the way for the entire Unification family to live together.

Even if True Children’s action hurt the heart of True Parents, and even if True Children have points to repent about, we are the ones who should repent first before they do! How many arrows have we thrown into Hyun Jin Nim’s heart who was walking desperately to lead blessed families correctly, taking responsibility over True Family and protecting the position of the eldest son in place of his elder brother, Hyo Jin Nim, when he fell into difficulty.

Knowing some part of the persecution given to Hyun Jin Nim, I could not stop my tears of repentance when I heard Hyun Jin Nim’s prayer and words during that period. Hyun Jin Nim says, “Blessed families are my family. I have responsibility to them.” Should we not repent deeply and pray as the Unification family as the first thing to do now? When such whirl of prayer occurs and fills the air, will not the path of providence and the resurrection of Unification family open?

What we would like to see is that Hyun Jin Nim and all the True Children come together under True Parents and that the Unification family becomes one again after the split. What we would like to see is for Hyun Jin Nim, Kook Jin Nim, Hyung Jin Nim to hold hands for the vision of founding Cheon Il Guk and the purpose. Is this not the core of vision 2020 for us?

Only if True Family is there, then this church can be built again because it is the center of God’s providence!

 

7. At the end – to become true sons and daughters

There was no day in which I did not struggle until I made this type of statement. I felt strongly that I do not want to carry such a burden if possible. But the more I prayed, the more I was moved spiritually, and I felt that I would regret it for the rest of my life if I don’t say this. This is as far as an old person like me can do. Those leaders and second generation will tell you what should be done from now concretely.

I am aware that there are those who know Hyun Jin Nim better than me, love True Children, endured huge pain and tried to seek the path of solution for the last 7 years. I sincerely hope that the words such as those in this letter would reach the minds of those people and help to guide the entire Unification family out from the muddy situation to the direction of Heaven’s desire. Lastly, I would like to end by introducing Father’s words and Hyun Jin Nim’s prayer.

Father’s words – “7 years of suffering”, 2/12/1961

“God foretold that there would be seven years of great tribulation confronting Humanity at the time of the last days. The period of great tribulation is the time when all saints must face the agonizing difficulties Heaven endured throughout the course of restoration history. As all human relationships will be broken down, you will face circumstances where you cannot trust anything. No matter how much you try to live your life conscientiously and righteously, you cannot insist on your way of life. . . .

It will be a time when all hopes will be shaken, the core of your faith will waver, and the leaders whom you have followed will vacillate. . . . Then, why would God make such a world at the time of the last days?. . . . God wants to find true sons and daughters who will be able to say “I love God,” or declare, “I will live with God” even in the midst of such tribulations and difficulties. . . . .

Also, know that God only makes you suffer so that one day He will build a precious relationship with you as you share the pain and suffering He has experienced throughout history. Thus, tribulation is His promise to do so. God needs such a time so that He can find a person, even in a most difficult situation, embracing Heaven and crying out, “I will go wherever You go. I will fight on with You. I will take action with You!” . . . .

You must have conviction in your heart that you will call out to your Heavenly Father even when facing unbearable situations. Even if you feel you have fallen to the bottom of the deepest valley, you must make every effort to climb up, using only a string that connects you with Heaven in your heart. . . . . You must realize the reality of such a Heavenly Father as your Heavenly Father, such a situation is His situation, and such a desperate heart as His heart. . . Then you must stand boldly before Him with conviction to proclaim,”. . . . I am a Manifestation of Your Desire, Your Situation, and Your Heart.” You must understand that only such people are truly Father’s son and are able to attend Father. “

Hyun Jin Nim’s prayer – 1/1/2016

“Father, let us discard all those things that make us unworthy of being a true son or a true daughter of yours. Let us hold on only to those things that give us our divinity and nobility to truly stand as your son and your daughter. . . . I know also clearly that you have prepared the stage for true actors to fulfill their portions of responsibility, which will allow that providence to start to take form on this earth.

Father, your seed has not died, you sovereignty has not perished and if there is any strength in this body, your will… your will…  (in tears) your will shall be done and your spirit and your grace shall touch the lives of thousands and millions. Your blessing, the root of the promise of salvation and eternal grace shall be given by bringing you these fallen, destined sons and daughters from the bondage of satanic ignorance and disgrace to be truly your divine, elevated sons and daughters, who aspire for great things in establishing your sovereign kingdom in heaven and on earth, one family at a time.

Father, please look after all those members of my family who are not here today. Let them feel your love and your grace; penetrate their hearts, let them find the humility that really is the window and the door through which they can meet you, Father, and let our family be whole once again.”

 

 

Setsuko Sakurai

November 30th 2016


Brief biography of Mrs. Setsuko Sakurai

 

Wife of the 5th president of Japanese Unification Church, Mr. Setsuo Sakurai (2011.11.20 Ascension)

1938.7.13: Born as the youngest child of five siblings in the fourth-generation Christian family

1960.9: Joined Unification Church in her second year of college

1960-1963: Pioneering witnessing

1963~: Divine Principle lecturer, Director of itinerary workers and director of family department at Japanese UC-HQ

1969.5: 43 Couples (Matching 12 Couples) Blessing, First Japanese Blessing

1996~: Moved to Turkey as the National Messiah of Turkey. After returning home, working as a lecturer in various fields such as life of faith, family life, etc.

 

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