In preparation for the Boston Celebration of CARP’s 50th Anniversary taking place tomorrow, November 19th, here’s a testimony from CARP Boston alumnus, George. Register and hear more stories at the event.
As a young child, I was very faithful but as I got into college, I got confronted by roommates who told me that God didn’t exist. I was really challenged by that. I prayed to God on the 50/50 chance God did exist.
I moved to Boston to attend the Berklee School of Music. One day in 1988, as I was walking home, someone approached me asking a few rhetorical questions from a survey. At the time, I was also involved in a Christian fellowship group and I saw these people doing missions and and I wondered, what am I going to do with my life? How am I going to make a difference? That was on my mind.
I Asked Many Questions
I was in music school but I didn’t want to marry an instrument and become totally focused on that. I wanted to marry life. I was invited to an evening program where I heard the Principle of Creation and I thought, that’s it! I feel it. I want to hear more. I was so open and pulling everything out of them. I heard everything. When it came to Parallels of History, I got confronted. I couldn’t accept or deny what I was beginning to understand.
So I kept asking questions. I attended workshops and studied and my conclusion was still, I don’t know. I took a break from school for a semester because it was a big decision for me. One guy told me, “George, you’re so in your head. You just got to take a risk and do something.” I was so tired of thinking.
I went back to school and joined CARP. The schedule was rigorous – I was a full-time student during the day and a full-time CARP member in the evenings and weekends. Even then, I wasn’t quite sure what I believed but I was there to figure it out.
We were lucky that Boston CARP, particularly, had world-class educators like Mr. Igarashi, Mr. Takeda, Mr. Sakai, and Mr. Fuji. We had very educational life of faith services. I wouldn’t have survived without them. It was a really big blessing. As you can imagine, the workload was intense so you had to have some serious motivation.
The Russian Providence
One memory that stands out was when the Russian providence opened up during midterms. We had people trickling into the CARP center and all of a sudden, the CARP center was full. We had just come out of the Cold War and Russia was no longer behind the Iron Curtain. People were interested in a trip to Russia, even though they only had ten days’ notice! That’s crazy! We literally had lines of people at the CARP center wanting to go to Russia. We went there and it was extraordinary. The millennial generation has no idea what a spectacle it was – it was like going to North Korea today.
The countries in red represent Soviet controlled territories separated from non-Soviet territories by the symbolic Iron Curtain.
It was unbelievable. We went to Moscow University (one of the top military universities), we slept in Stalin’s winter home (wow!), and the people who were taking care of us and teaching us Divine Principle were Russian students. We brought scores of people, filling up airplanes. Students got permission from their professors to skip midterms and go to Russia. Everyone was blown away.
The feeling was how on earth were we pointing bombs at each other?! How could we have ever done that? It was very emotional. We went from our parents fighting each other and we, the children of enemies that killed each other by the millions, embraced. A number of people joined at that time. That was the biggest highlight in Boston CARP.
For Students Today
You have a short time to prepare for the Marriage Blessing. Immerse yourself and be all about growing yourself right now in your spiritual life. Don’t hold back. You’ll never be able to do it again, especially after you have a family. Have those experiences – when you really work hard and you end up crying to God. When you get to that emotional place, you’ll have all the ingredients to make a successful Blessing.