2017 marks the fifth year of the passing of one of CARP’s founders, Rev. Sun Myung Moon, also known as Father Moon.
Father Moon dedicated his life to making a world of peace and created CARP as a movement of young people for peace.
Today, CARP America remembers his legacy:
“When thinking of Father Moon, I think of a universal man–a man who pioneered the idea of ‘living for the sake of others’ and ‘living for a purpose greater than the self’ as the way to peace and harmony for humankind.
I love these ideas because they go beyond religion, race and nationality. The fact that every human being regardless of their religion, race and nationality can resonate with them makes them so precious.
I believe every person wants peace and harmony, but it is in ‘how to achieve peace and harmony’ that we get stuck. When thinking of the cause of conflict and disharmony, we can come to an agreement that selfishness is in most cases the root of it all.
It is when my selfishness meets another’s selfishness that conflict becomes unavoidable.That’s why I think that Father Moon’s ideas of ‘living for the sake of others’ or being as selfless as possible and ‘living for a purpose greater than the self’ are very important.
However, for me what is very inspiring about Father Moon is not that he had these great ideas, but the fact that he actually lived his entire life applying them. Where there was war, he wanted to go there and be the bridge. Where there was hunger, he not only provided food for people, but taught them how to farm so they can be able to grow their own food.
It is his dedication to live for the sake of others that inspires me the most and It is my conviction that if each member of our society can apply Rev. Moon’s idea of ‘living for the sake of others,’ peace, unity and harmony can be a reality.”
Josue Haebangja Kisile, Grand Rapids Community College, MI
“When I was younger, I’ve had a many opportunities to attend Father Moon’s events as a student in Korea, but I didn’t really have a deep understanding of how incredible he was, and why and how he could walk his path enduring difficulties and trials that other people could not.
Now, however, I have a little deeper understanding about it. I believe I’ve come to know Father Moon’s heart a little more.
Looking at Mother Moon and following her through CARP these last two years, I can see her hard work and all her effort and her hope toward the younger generation. She is very much united with Father Moon’s vision.
Father Moon, thank you for letting me know why I was born and what we and this world are meant to become.
Someday, I hope to talk to you about how much I accomplished.”
Atsuki Imamura, New Jersey Institute of Technology, NJ
“For as long as I can remember, Father Moon had inspired me. I have heard many stories and testimonies of all the great things he accomplished and how Father Moon changed people’s lives. However, I am inspired by an earlier point in his life when he was sixteen years old.
In Father Moon’s autobiography As a Peace Loving Global Citizen, he shares about his childhood and experiences growing up in Korea. There’s a point in his life where it feels his world is crashing down around him. His village is poor, a portion of his family’s livestock dies, and, worst of all, five of his siblings die in the same year. At the time, he was sixteen years old.
In a moment of desperation and immense sadness, he turns to God and asks why so much suffering is happening and what is the point of life. Through his discussion with God, he heard God asking him to end the suffering in the world and build a world of peace.
After battling the decision for a while, Father Moon decides to become the person who could end all suffering for God and every person on earth. He then worked the rest of his life in pursuit of this goal.
What moves me from this testimony is the commitment he maintained from that moment on. When I think of Father Moon, I think of three things: Love, Truth, and Integrity. I believe he embodied these things deeply and brought them more into the world.
Father Moon is a role model for my life and someone I aspire to inherit from. He taught me that no matter how terrible the situation I can have a heart to cry for other people in the world and work to end others’ pain. I can live not for my sake, but for the sake of others, for the sake of the world. If I can live my life in that way while giving love, embodying truth and having integrity, I can be a force that changes the world for the betterment of all people.
Thank you, Father Moon, for truly being a peace loving global citizen and teaching me to be the same.”
Sarah Takhar, Pasadena City College, CA
“It’s strange, even though I have never met Father Moon, I feel like I know him. Father Moon is someone who has always been a leader and a role model. Books could be written about any one of his achievements, and he has too many to count.
However, what he has left behind for me is an example of love and leadership to strive for and a presence that gives me comfort. As the president of our CARP chapter in Las Vegas, I have a lot that I am responsible for as a leader and many people whom I am trusted to care for. I am also a perfectionist by nature.
Together, that combination leads me to stress out and to criticize myself, sometimes a little too much. When that happens, I try to pause for a second and think of what Father Moon would tell me.
I can imagine his penetrating gaze but with a twinkle in his eyes, his intense focus but with a grin at the corners of his mouth. He reminds me that no matter how serious and important my work is, there’s always a reason to smile.
Life is meant to be filled with joy, and there’s no time to dwell in worry and fear. This is how Father Moon’s legacy lives and grows within me.”
Jinil Fleischman, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV
“I’ve had a lot of opportunities to see and meet Father Moon growing up. I saw him so many times, I’ve come to think of him as my own elderly father.
One time, when I was eleven, I was in Korea for a 40 day retreat. The retreat was located near a lake where Father Moon often fished; however, no one was expecting to see him.
I went down by the lake for water when I saw him on the dock with a few of his children. Unable to contain myself, I ran over to the bushes and watched him. I couldn’t hear what he was saying, but I was enthralled.
I was breaking my retreat schedule, but still I continued to wait there, watching for the better part of an hour until he finished. He started coming up from the dock, and I began to panic. I wasn’t supposed to be there, and there wasn’t anywhere to hide.
I stood frozen as he walked up with his entourage and got into his car. From the passenger seat, he waved one of his party over and handed him something.
The man came up to me and gave me some sweets from Father Moon. I then watched as he drove away.
It’s hard for me to imagine what Father Moon went through, like his six unjust imprisonments including once in a concentration camp, but in that moment, I realized, as much as I had come to see Father Moon as my father, he saw me as his child, even though he had never met me before. Despite his experiences, he never diminished his ability to love all humankind.
I promise, Father, that I will continue to live the legacy of love you created. Thank you for everything.”
Jennifer Pierce, National CARP staff