The Birth of CARP in Grand Rapids
Contributed by Josue Kisile
When I look back to where we started with CARP in Grand Rapids, I see God working. Personally, I was never very interested in doing CARP, perhaps because I did not have the right understanding of what it was and I limited myself. Since childhood, I have been very attracted to the idea of becoming a pastor or a church representative, but CARP never crossed my mind.
But now, you can call me “the CARP guy.” After studying Father Moon’s words on CARP and the history of CARP, I am convinced that if we are to revive the spirit of our movement and bring it back the youthful spirit that characterized it in its early years, CARP is the way to do it. CARP is a movement of the Principle.
How did I become so hooked on CARP?
The idea came when I had to give a speech in my class on something that I am very passionate about. I struggled to find a topic that was not related to God, religion, or soccer. If you are really paying attention to what is going on on the college campuses, you’d know that topics related to God and religion are not very welcomed, and soccer didn’t seem the right fit.
I made up my mind to talk about sexual purity, but I had to find a title that would grab my audience’s attention. I titled it: “Sexual Purity: a Solution to Sexually Transmitted Diseases.” My professor, despite being a Christian, wasn’t comfortable with me talking about such a subject because of the repercussions it might cause in the class. I wouldn’t be saying the truth if I said I wasn’t scared. However, I took it very seriously because I saw it as an opportunity to convey a message from God.
“To find a solution to a problem, we need to know its cause. The reason we haven’t found a solution to the problem of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is that we focus on the effects rather than on the cause. STD’s are the effects of sex outside of marriage; to solve the problem, we have to do the opposite of what we have been doing, which is absolute abstinence before marriage and absolute fidelity in marriage,” I said in my speech in front of forty of my classmates.
Speaking Up on Campus
To my big surprise and contrary to the negative response I expected, I was applauded and even congratulated by my professor and some of my classmates. On that day I learned that although the flame of the truth is overshadowed by the false philosophy that is popular in our society, nothing can stop it from burning. I felt a call to bring back the flame of truth at my campus.
From the time that I learned that I have the support of my community and that of the CARP National team, I felt empowered to establish a chapter. I felt the support from God in every step I took to register CARP as an official club on campus. It looked like people were already prepared to support the establishment of CARP at Grand Rapids Community College. Every person I spoke to was ready to support.
Because of that, I could easily relate to Mother Moon’s words that if we unite with her, miracles can happen. Yes, if we unite with the person God is working through and move forward denying ourselves, we can achieve what seems impossible to achieve.
I declared I would start a CARP chapter at Grand Rapids Community College for my new year’s resolution for 2017 and on September 8, 2017, CARP was officially recognized. As of today, we have 15 members registered with CARP, and the number is set to increase before the end of this winter semester. We meet twice a week: on Mondays for a CARP Talk with either a guest speaker or a student presenting on a topic they are passionate about in conformity with our CARP principles. On Tuesdays, we meet for Divine Principle study.
I am very grateful for the brothers and sisters who are tirelessly working to bring guests to our weekly meetings. I have a lot of hope that through CARP, we can bring victory.
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