In the morning, we learned about the Family Matching Process as done in America. This was based on many years of trial and error, and suggestions in the book are what American Blessing Department thinks would work best. One thing to note is that verticality (higher purpose, shared ideals, and strong faith in God) and horizontality (connection, friendship, compatibility, and attraction) are both important in the Matching Process. The other important point is tomake sure to create your Family Matching Plan with your parents so that everyone is on the same page.
Afterward, we set goals for ourselves, whether or not they directly related with the blessing. This was great for us because it gave us clarity on what to do after the workshop.
In the afternoon, we had a special lecture from Mr. Sakurai, who is the Vice President ofthe Family Education Department in Japan. His message was so simple; there were just three key words that we had to remember: pride, joy, and hope; pride for my identity as God’s child, joy for our community and culture, and hope for our dream and mission. Because of its simplicity, people enjoyed it a lot.
He also mentioned films and stories like the Lion King and the Ugly Duckling, and how these are closely related with Blessed Children’s lives.
“The story of the Ugly Duckling was the most impressive today. The people of our church are very much forbidden (from doing things) unlike the other people of the world. When we heard the story of the Ugly Duckling, we were impressed to realize that this is a mirror image of our lives; we are the children of swans.” –Jin-Gyeong, Korea
Afterward, we had a (Il-Shim) purity ceremony. Though this was for the Seonghwa (high school) students, all the CARP students supported them in this ceremony. We first started this with meditation and reading True Parents’ words. Then we got to the main part of the ceremony, the purity pledge, where we vowed to keep our purity until the Blessing. We ended the ceremony with a prayer and a giving of gifts to the Seonghwa students from the CARP students. It was a moving experience.
To end our day, we heard two testimonies. The first one was about an education program created in Korea for the purpose of educating our Blessed Children. The main point was that if we don’t educate our second generation, there will be no one left; that is why education is so important.
The second one was about DONE, a gap-year program in Europe. We learned about what goes on, but the most important thing we gained from this testimony is that God’s love for us is unconditional, and our value doesn’t depend on success or failure.
And that’s a day. Though the Blessing Education phase is over, good times are still ahead. But less than a week remains.