From May 18th to 20th, CARP members from around the Midwest region gathered at Camp Kingdom of Heaven on Earth (Camp K.O.H.O.E.) in Benton Harbor, Michigan, for a retreat on Unification Principles. The purpose of the retreat was to provide an opportunity for CARP members to go in depth into the Unification Principles and experience the culture of true love that CARP champions.
There were twenty seven participants including two faculty members and two parental figures. Some participants were meeting for the first time, but they immediately felt like family and did not need icebreakers to engage in conversation and laugh together. One participant said, “Here at Camp K.O.H.O.E, we were able to create our small world of peace—we created our own heaven.”
We started the retreat getting to know each other, stating our intentions for the weekend, and learning about CARP and its founders. We watched a video on the life of founders Rev. and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon.
For those who were new, they were surprised that they had never heard about CARP’s founders and their lifelong efforts to bring about a world of peace and harmony. Participants were inspired by the idea that we are all part of God’s family regardless of race, religion, nationality, culture, and language.
We dove into content on Saturday. We had four presentations: two in the morning and two in the afternoon. The two in the morning were presented by Mr. Gerry Servito, known lovingly as Uncle Gerry; the two morning sessions were based on Unification Thought, a companion book to the Divine Principle.
Uncle Gerry gives his presentations.
Through these presentations, the students discovered a different view of God—a God of heart, logos, and creativity. Participants were very touched by this view of God. For many of them, it moved them to know that God thought about each one of them and invested His entire heart in creating each one of them to be His objects of love.
“I have always been mean and rude to my friends, but now I understand that I have to love them as God loves them,” a student said.
“I found the idea that God had a complex plan for creation intriguing. I liked the description that everything [the creative process] wasn’t accidental.” ~Victoria Konan, Detroit
Dr. Beebe connects the principles to real-world issues.
The latter two presentations were done by Dr Robert Beebe, the first one on Education and the second on Love and Sexuality. In his presentation on education, Dr Beebe shared that the original purpose of education is to raise moral and ethical youths who are to be the future of the nation.
Participants learned that in order to build a moral and ethical society, we need to have moral and ethical individuals. After studying the history of the changes in the education system in America, participants came to realize that our education system has shied away from its responsibility.
In his presentation on Love and Sexuality, Dr Beebe addressed the “hookup culture” that is popular on many college campuses. He began by asking questions like: how do your peers talk about sex? What is the purpose of sex? What is the connection between sex and love?
He also explained the sexual revolution of the 1960’s which led to the loss of traditional values. Participants learned the difference between casual sex and true love. He concluded his presentation by inviting participants to join the new sexual revolution that CARP is leading on college campuses—the absolute sex revolution.
On Sunday morning, Uncle Gerry shared practicing living with God. He challenged the participants to always involve God in whatever they do. He shared that for him, even loving his wife is a form of attendance to God because he strongly believes that God gave her to him.
He explained that loving our family members and all the people around us is the best way to experience God’s love. Participants were encouraged to live by such a high standard of true love.
“This retreat has taught me a lot of great lessons. One of them is to not wait until tomorrow to do a good thing even if there is lot of people trying to stop you. No matter how other treat you, Always treat them with love and respect. Peace starts within you. It was a great opportunity to take a break from our daily lives boring and stressful activities and to spend quality time with wonderful people appreciating our Father [God] for all He has given to us.” ~Kalpana, Grand Rapids Community College (GRCC)
Through this retreat, the attendees discovered a deeper interest in Unification Principles. When the retreat began, many had the intention to meet new people and make new friends, but ended up finding a new family.
“I am sorry for my friends who could not come, they would have had a very good experience,” Blessed Wonjah, President of Black African Student Union (BASU), said.
“The weekend was good, fun, inspiring and memorable to me. Having to understand God and to know how special each person is to God really inspired me to see everyone around me as a beloved child of God. Personally, within the three days we spent together, I felt love, I saw peace and I was moved by the care we showed for each other.” ~ Sarafina, Core CARP member
“This was actually my first time participating formal CARP event, although I have heard of CARP for so long. It was amazingly inspiring to see people from different backgrounds come together to promote good values and morals and be the change in the world. The energy was great, I had fun and most importantly, I learned so much just in 3 days. Great workshop!” ~Cynthia Konan, Detroit
“I was blessed to be a part of this retreat, to meet the wonderful young people and adults who were a part of this retreat and to be in the beautiful rural setting of Camp K.O.H.O.E near Benton Harbor, Michigan. The young people and adults I met on this retreat were from Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, and New Jersey. The gathering of these friends truly represented the diversity of CARP and its message of world peace. I particularly enjoyed beginning to understand Unification Principles and pondering how these principles could make a difference in my life and the lives of the young people who were present. It was refreshing and hopeful to see young people so enthused and enlivened by the discussion and consideration of ideas about living that really matter and to be moved by the importance of what they can contribute to the world in this phase of their life’s journey. This experience went far beyond just ‘doing good in the world’. It focused on changing the world through the living of our own lives: truly inspirational. I left this retreat a changed person. I am looking forward to my involvement as a faculty mentor for the Grand Rapids Community College CARP members not only for their sake, but for mine as well.” ~ Dr Stephen Barton, faculty member at GRCC
Many others pledged to bring their friends next semester to experience the love that they found in CARP. It is with this event that we conclude this school year, and we will work to bring to campus this culture of true love in the Fall Semester.
On April 10th, students wearing bright red shirts saying “You Are Worth More” overflowed the campus at the College of Southern Nevada (CSN). The slogan connected to the theme of the Campus Talk event: “Sex and Morality: Confronting the Culture of Casual Sex,” inspiring students to believe in a meaningful and lasting love that is worth more than the superficial love that is inherent in casual sex.
Preparing for the event
Over 110 people gathered for the event, including 7 faculty members, 65 CSN students and 30 CARP students and volunteers. Among the participants were CSN student government officials and student club leaders who genuinely care about the culture of their college campus and beyond.
The purpose of the event was to bring attention to issues that result from the culture of casual sex that permeates society. Throughout the day, students passed out many flyers at a booth in front of the school, and played beautiful music to draw attention to the booth. There were a handful of club leaders and representatives, as well as fellow CARP friends who supported as the main outreach team for the event.
The event program
As the auditorium began to fill, the emcee Mr. Ryota Naito, vice-president of CARP CSN, warmly welcomed everyone and opened up the program by conveying the importance of addressing the topic of sex and morality. He invited the audience to be open to learn with a perspective of how being informed about sex and love connects us to lifelong happiness.
The first speaker was Professor Paul Herrle, a psychology professor who teaches Human Sexuality at CSN. He shared insightful data and statistics of the effects of sex and relationships on people’s happiness and emotional health. He enlightened the audience by addressing many of the myths that young people believe about sexuality within today’s culture.
Next, Ms. Janice Glasper, the dean of the Health Sciences department, shared the outcomes of casual sex through her own testimony of raising 3 children as a single mother. In her times of hardships, she realized that though she felt she was misused and mistreated by others and didn’t have a role model of love, she needed to become the example for the sake of her children.
“By attending Campus Talk, I learned I’m not ready to engage in any sexual activity and I have to form a vision for my future in all ways possible (i.e. relationships, career, friendships,etc.) With a lot of temptation in the world, I admit, it won’t be easy to stay focused on the bigger goal in life of accomplishing my dreams.” – Karli McFarling-Kelly, president of student club, Black Student Union
The last talk was delivered by Mr. Andrew Love, who is a mentor and communication director for a non-profit organization called High Noon. He passionately spoke about the importance of creating a powerful vision for oneself and one’s future marriage and family, in order to fight against any obstacles that may hinder that vision. Through his humorous yet convincing stories, he was able to share the paramount importance of sexual integrity.
During a Q&A session, Professor Herrle went into greater depth of how media portrays sex and relationships affect men and women, and Dean Glasper expressed how her faith carried her through the hardest times of her life.
In the end, Ms. Vivien Brock, a CSN student government senator, shared about her challenging life experiences with this topic. The fellow students were moved by her story of resilience and hope.
Mr. Naito wrapped up the evening by encouraging the participants to connect to clubs and communities of people who are striving to mature their character and quality of relationships.
Reflections on the event
This Campus Talk was a very impactful and enlightening experience for all who attended. One student was surprised by the statistics that were shared in the first talk because throughout his whole life, the concepts and attitudes that he had been taught contradicted these facts.
“I liked the talk a lot and I told my parents about it. They thought it was good that I was supporting a good cause like this one.” – Student Participant
“The program was very informative and it has me reevaluating my life and my decisions.” – Student Participant
“I needed this about 6 years ago.” – Student Participant
“It was the best event I’ve seen held in CSN! Usually during the events here, the same faces show up. However, this event had so much diversity and so many people!” – Senator of CSN student government
“I am very proud to be associated with that event.” – Professor Paul Herrle, speaker at the event
Many participants shared that they wished the program was longer because they were so eager to learn more from the speakers. CARP will be hosting the same event at UNLV on the following week. Please stay tuned!
On April 7th, 2018, 300 people attended the second rally at the Los Angeles Family Church. The intention for this gathering was to build personal and intimate relationships with each of the participants and inspire them to become partners in making CARP’s vision a reality.
CARP leaders visited 14 different churches to share the vision of RSWM.
Like the last rally, we had two fronts of outreach. We invited our friends and chapters from our college campuses, and we asked our friends from ACLC and their church contacts to come out too.
CARP chapters presented the vision and mission of the rally in their club meetings.
“Although the event itself was great, to me the revival moments came during the process of putting it together with others who hold the same vision as I do. I struggled and saw others struggle, but seeing them continue forward despite the challenges was inspiring. The Revival started before the event even started.” – Yuka Oiwa, CARP PCC Vice-President
Patrick Bolton and his band brought incredible energy to the rally.
Patrick Bolton, the Band Leader at City of Refuge, started the rally with some inspiring songs that demanded audience participation. The participants danced, sang, and shouted. It set an exciting and vibrant atmosphere!
Rev. Young Tack Yang, the Senior Pastor of the Los Angeles Family Church, gave a few welcoming remarks before Sarah Takhar, Pasadena City College (PCC) CARP President, took the stage as the emcee for the event.
Rev. Matthew Wheaton Jr. gave the opening prayer.
Co-Chairman of ACLC LA, Dr. Nicholas Benson, gave the opening remarks, noting the diversity of crowd and the number of youth leaders who stepped up to make the rally happen. He was followed by Rev. Matthew Wheaton Jr. for the opening prayer.
The audience joined hands for the opening prayer.
Patrick Bolton gave an encore performance quieting the mood for a video introduction of the history of mission of the ‘Revival Starts With Me’ rallies, created by CARP Cypress member, Isaac Takeu.
“Unity and fellowship really bring out the best in people, and this event was no exception! It did just that and brought people from many different cultures, backgrounds, etc. together for a night of fun, unity, and worship! I can’t wait till the next rally of RSWM!” – Nico Anthony, El Camino College
Joshua Holmes, CARP Cypress President, shared a personal revival testimony.
CARP Cypress President, Joshua Holmes, shared his perspective as a college student with an impassioned speech about the state of division in each of us and related that to his own personal testimony and the RSWM mission statement.
He also shared about the Founders of CARP, Father and Mother Moon, and their life testimony. He shared that they endured suffering and persecution and even imprisonment in concentration camps to share their message of peace and love. Joshua said he looks to them as role models and hopes to follow in their footsteps.
Youngbok Gomez expresses the spirit of love and peace through his song.
He was followed by local artist, Youngbok Gomez, who shared an original song, Letter from Heaven.
Dr. JoAnna Schilling takes the stage!
After that, Cypress College President, Dr. JoAnna Schilling, shared the collegiate administration perspective. Her speech was about the four values from Cypress College: Integrity, Excellence, Collegiality, and Inclusiveness, and how they related to RSWM. She expressed how happy and proud she was to be a part of a group of young people who are not only inspired, but make concrete steps to achieving their higher purpose.
Bishop Noel Jones inspires the audience.
Representing the church clergy present, Bishop Noel Jones gave a speech on the spiritual and Biblical perspective on division and the solutions. His words affirmed the mission of RSWM from a Christian perspective.
The audience made new friends and deepened relationships in their pair share.
After every speech, Sarah led the group in a pair share. The final discussion was about how they can apply what they heard after the rally. It was during these times the audience members were encouraged to share their hearts and make new friends.
“The part that stood out most was how nice and welcoming everyone there was. It felt easy to get along with everyone. I was able to experience revival by reflecting upon past actions in my life as I listened to the speakers.” – Deontae Taylor, Cerritos College
A former member of the Hyo Jin Moon Band, Matt Ishizuka performed with passion and fervor.
The Los Angeles Family Band performed the song, My Pledge, which was written by former World CARP President, Hyo Jin Moon.
Pastor Nisan Stewart and Takayo Hiraki share their reflections and a prayer.
Then, Pastor Nisan Stewart shared his reflection with the audience, and CARP Cal State LA Member, Takayo Hiraki, led everyone in a unison prayer.
CARP LA perform their show-stopper, Mujogeon, to close the rally.
The LA Family Church Band concluded the event with an original song, We Are One, and accompanied CARP LA members who performed the Mujogeon dance.
Kyosei Nagai, CARP ECC President, shares about CARP’s vision to interested students.
The program then shifted to an interactive cafe experience called Vision Cafe. CARP, ACLC, the Universal Peace Federation (UPF), Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP), and other organizations set up booths to share what they’ve been doing and inspire the participants to connect.
Food and drink were available as well as a photo booth and time for fellowship. It was an opportunity for everyone to feel connected to each other by striving for a higher purpose.
Emcee, Sarah Takhar, and CARP Cypress Vice President, Ori Rodriguez, take a commemorative photo.
Connect and Build
The entire program lasted until 6pm. While the staff, cooks, ushers, and backstage members felt exhausted from preparing and hosting for two days, we all felt a sense of fulfillment that we were able to connect with so many people on a deeper level.
Ushers greeted attendees at the entrance with little gifts for each of them!
“I went in not quite knowing what to expect but I was overwhelmed, in a good way, with the sheer amount of joy and passion that each member of Revival Starts With Me brought to their worship of God. Be it through dance, sermons, or electric guitar, they showed that excellence is something that is not only a habit, but something that can be brought and shared through their continued efforts to strive for peace.” – Evan Chan, Graduate
In inviting our campus faculty and our community’s church leaders, we were able to bridge a gap that had long since been separating our young people from faith and from our educators.
CARP Cypress takes a photo with Dr. Schilling, Maha Afra (CARP Chapter Advisor), and CARP LA President, Jermaine Bishop Jr.
Moving forward, Cypress College wants to host us and Bishop Noel Jones on campus to share our message of peace and faith, a result of CARP Cypress’s work of raising the students, loving the faculty, and serving the campus.
RSWM on April 7th was a call to action. It was an invitation to be part of something larger and build an ideal world together, starting with me.
We plan to continue connecting to our new friends and family to create and make new programs that continue to strive for bigger and better.
On March 24th, 2018, CARP Bay Area hosted a 1-Day Unification Principle (UP) seminar at a gorgeous venue in Oakland Hills with a breathtaking view of the Bay Area. There was a total of 21 people attending (10 staff, 11 participants), with 4 returning guests and 2 new guests.
Inspired by our previous UP Seminar with guest speaker Bento Leal, we were determined to create an action plan to invite more participants for this seminar.CARP members spent one month preparing through outreach and special events. We held two ‘IGNITE’ evening programs, three Chabot CARP club meetings on campus, and one special Chabot event, featuring Bento Leal as a speaker on “Cultivating Your Relationship Garden.”
All these events were designed with the intention to build momentum to introduce the Unification Principle at the one-day seminar. CARP and the Bay Area Family Church (BAFC) community collaborated to organize, host, and invite participants to the UP seminar. We gathered an inter-generational group, ranging from college-age young adults to even one great-grandparent! There were six new faces among the 21 total participants.
The goal of the UP Seminars is to provide an experience of the culture of heart and God’s words. Through these seminars, we hope to build a supportive community that people can join for long-term study and practice of Unification Principle.
The seminar began with a warm welcome by the emcee, Naomi Froehlich, and was followed by an icebreaker activity which filled the room with energy as participants met and introduced themselves to one another. Just before the lectures, everyone’s hearts were opened by a song presentation of “Sukiyaki” by a mother-daughter duo, Mrs. Tomiko Gordon and Erika Gordon.
The lectures were all presented by Mr. Bento Leal who captivated the audience with his blend of animated, spontaneous humor and expressing the depth and heart of the Unification Principles. He covered the Principles of Creation, the Fall of Man, and concluded with introducing the hope and solution. Each lecture presentation was followed by a group discussion filled with laughter, new realizations, and even tears.
After a delicious, home-cooked lunch by the wonderful kitchen staff, the participants engaged in a reflective activity. Looking back on their life so far, they pinpointed their low and high points, when they first recognized God’s love, and a time when someone believe in them. This allowed them to unpack their hearts and recognize God’s constant guidance in their life.
The seminar concluded with a video presentation entitled “Man of Peace,” introducing the founders, Father and Mother Moon, who revealed the Unification Principles. Participants were moved by the footage of their life-long peace and reconciliation efforts.
As a follow up to this Introductory Seminar, we decided to host another seminar (Part 2) on Saturday, March 31st, inviting Pastor Thompson to speak on Jesus’ life and mission in the spirit of Easter and the Holy Week.
We also would like to express our gratitude to the hard-working cooks, Amily Van Galen and Mrs. Bridget, for investing their heart into the refreshments and lunch. It further added to the culture of heart which was created and felt at this UP seminar.
“Men become builders by building and lyre players by playing the lyre; so too we become just by doing just acts, temperate by doing temperate acts, brave by doing brave acts.” -Aristotle
On March 6, we hosted guest speaker, Bento Leal, to present on the theme of nourishing our relationships. He emphasized that cultivating “our relationship garden” takes effort and consistency, and the building of good habits.
Moving forward, the focus of this semester’s campus programs will be – the practice of inner habits of a global citizen, and today’s meeting introduced that theme. Erika Gordon opened the program with a talk titled “Habits of the Heart” which was followed by reflection and pair shares. Erika emphasized the importance and value of creating habits in our daily lives to strengthen and grow our hearts and character.
When looking at the role models in your life, how do you think they became who they are? To become who we aspire to be, to be strong and confident in who we are, Erika expressed the importance of the inner mindset we carry and how that impacts the quality of our actions – or practice of good habits – towards positive change.
We may feel stuck at times in our lives and wonder how can get to where we want to be. Action with a clear inner intention is how we get there. We will continue to go over each of the inner habits in becoming a global citizen every Tuesday on campus and encourage everyone to share their experiences in working towards creating these habits.
This past weekend, the CARP core team came together and created “CARP games.” The purpose is for students to share how they are practicing the inner habits of a global citizen in their daily lives, as discussed at the CARP campus programs.
Students are invited to participate in the games by joining the CARP Games Facebook page and making a post with an explanation and picture about how they were able to practice the inner habits they are working on. Through this action step, we hope to be a source of encouragement and support to one another as we grow our character and heart to be global citizens and the people we aspire to be.
Inner Habits of a Global Citizen:
Power of Words
Silence(Meditation, Prayer, etc.)
Challenging Your Limitations
Join CARP Bay Area and challenge yourself to practice your inner habits!