Motoyama: A Unificationist’s Inspiring Story
2015 Cheon Il Guk Leaders Assembly
1.15 in the third year of Cheon Il Guk (March 5th 2015), Cheongshim Youth Center
Mr. Katsuhiro Motoyama, a second generation who serves as a leader in Japan presented on Carp’s strategy and goals for 2015 at the Cheon Il Guk Leaders’ Assembly on March 5th. It was a testimony on the struggles faced by Unificationists in Japan which was refreshing and received with a huge round of applause. Here is what he said (or you can downlaud):
Beloved True Parents, distinguished guests, leaders of the Unification movement, members of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, brothers and sisters, it is a distinctly humbling experience to have the great honor to stand here before you to give a special lecture at the Cheon Il Guk Leaders’ Assembly 2015. First of all, I would like to extend my deepest appreciation to God and True Parents to give me this great opportunity. I am not sure whether I should stand here today but I would like to do my best and share something with you. Before talking about today’s main topic, the possibilities for the Unification movement, I would like to introduce myself and share my testimony.
This is a picture of my family. My name is Katsuhiro Motoyama. I was born in Japan in 1981 as the fourth child of a blessed family. My father is an international messiah to Honduras, a small country in Central America. I have two elder brothers, one elder sister and one younger sister. The first elder brother, Katsumitri, is now working as the president of World CARP, Japan, the second elder brother, Katsuyoshi, is working at the international headquarters of FFWPU in Korea. My eldest sister is Fumiyo; she is living in Seoul with her family. My younger sister, Yoshie, is living in Fukoka with her family and I have a beloved wife and three children. All of my five brothers and sisters received the Marriage Blessing and have their own families. In total, my brothers and sisters currently have fourteen children and we will soon have sixteen children this year. (Applause) Thank you very much. So that means my parents will have sixteen third generation Unificationist grandchildren, so the population of my family will increase by eight times across three generations. Thank you very much. This is the development of my family and hopefully, keeping this pace, after 20 generations, after 400 years, my family will become one country with a population of 100 million.
I loved my mother but she died when I was 12 years old. My father was taking care of his five children, including me, and when I was fifteen years old, my father went to Honduras on a national messiah mission. This meant that there were no parents, no adults in my house. My elder brother was studying in Korea, and my elder sister was studying abroad as well, so there were only three young children in my house. We had to survive by ourselves. From the age of fifteen, I had a part time job every day for our living expenses and study fees. We were very poor; sometimes we did not have any money to even pay for electricity, water or food when I was a teenager.
I think this is not an extreme example. We have seen this with blessed families in Japan, most of whom have been living like this. At that time I had no mother on earth, and no father in the country, but I think I did have one thing. I had only one thing and it’s related to my parents: I really respect my parents because they love each other centering on God. Even after the death of my mother, I thought the belief of my parents were true, I thought the Marriage Blessing by True Parents was true marriage. That was my conviction from the substantial experience of my family life.
I had many questions and doubts at that time. As a second generation Unificationist I was respecting the beliefs of my parents, but I had never seen God, never met him directly, so I could not have conviction about God. “Is there really a God?” was my first question. The second question was, “What is my mission and what should I do throughout my life?” In my high school days I was searching, studying, praying to know God, to meet God. When I was 17 years old, I attended a workshop here in Cheong Pyeong. At midnight on the final day of the workshop, I was praying alone under the Tree of Love. In that prayer, finally, I could find God, I could meet God, I could find an answer. God is here, God loves me and God is my Father. So that was a clear answer to the first question.
I cannot explain about the details of this experience. It is a spiritual experience, but I think every person here and all blessed families have had such an experience of meeting God through True Parents. I think that is a real core value of our movement; that is the common sense our community has. For me, after the encounter with God, I started to think about my mission to realize God’s providence. What should I do for the dream of God?
After the Cheong Pyeong workshop I was reading the Divine Principle every day. One day, I found a sentence in the Divine Principle; it is was a paragraph about John the Baptist and Jesus, about why Jesus approached John the Baptist first, and why Jesus needed John the Baptist. The Divine Principle says that the messiah needs a leader who can lead thousands of people, rather than having thousands of followers, because he comes to build the kingdom of heaven on earth. This sentence was the answer to the second question, “What should I do for God?” I should become a leader who can lead thousands of people rather than be one of the thousand followers. Then I had determined to study at the top university in Japan, Tokyo University, to become a leader who can lead thousands of people for God and True Parents. (Applause) Thank you. However, at that time, my school grades were very bad and people said that it would be one hundred percent impossible for me to pass the entrance exam for Tokyo University. But I did not give up. I started to study for more than 14 hours every day. At that time my parents were not in Japan and I quit my part time job to concentrate on my studies. I had no income, no money and no food, but I had a conviction that God loves me and that this is the right way to prepare for becoming a leader who can lead thousands of people.
In fact, after one year, God gave me a miracle. God brought me to Tokyo University. I actually passed the entrance exam. (Applause) Thank you very much. When I was studying at Tokyo University, I was a member of World CARP Japan, and I tried to witness to Tokyo University students. True Father said “I have one thing that I want to do. I want to have 120 students of Tokyo University.” So this became my own dream, and I tried to prepare the foundation for bringing 120 Tokyo University students to God. Those students would become leaders who can lead thousands of people in the future, and I also had a dream to bring True Parents to the main lecture hall of Tokyo University to give a speech. Unfortunately, I could not realize this dream over four years of my studies, but I think this dream is to be continued in the future.
After graduating from Tokyo University, I studied Unification Theology at Sun Moon University. I also worked as a staff member on Junior STF Japan for a short time. On Junior STF I created a special study program and study workshop for second generation Unificationists to become leaders who can have both internal faith and external ability. In those days, many second generation Unificationists had good minds but they did not have good performance in their studies, so I guided them to study hard, not for themselves, but for the sake of God’s providence and to prepare for the future to become a leader who can lead thousands of people. I pressured them to get into top universities, including Tokyo University, centering on God. Recently, some of the Junior STF members actually enrolled at Tokyo University and other top universities in Japan and I hope, in the near future, that every year more than 30 members of Junior STF will be able to enroll at Tokyo University.
After working for Junior STF, I studied at Harvard Graduate School of Education. In my application essay to Harvard, I wrote about Sun Moon University, UTS and my teaching experience on Junior STF. Harvard accepted me and acknowledged my experience and my vision. After graduating from Harvard, I started to work at the Nippon Foundation, which I will talk about later. In addition, I am also writing books and a blog. Until now, my vision has been an inner vision within the community of the Unification movement but I am now trying to extend the inner vision to the outer vision in order to reach thousands of people in society.
Until now, I have published eight books about learning, education and work skills based on life experience. (Applause) Thank you very much. Some of the books became best sellers and they were translated in Korea, Taiwan, China and Thailand. I am trying to include the essence of the Divine Principle in my books, so please buy my books, especially members in Korea, China, Taiwan and Thailand; then I can offer more money to the church. I am also writing a blog and writing many articles on the topic of education, family and leadership development, major online media as well as journals and newspapers. Now, hundreds of thousands of people are reading my articles every month, so, I think I am now influencing hundreds of thousands of people.
But I do not hide my belief and my background as a Unificationist. For example, if you search my name on the internet, then the Unification movement is the first suggested words associated with my name, so people can easily know my beliefs. I am shouldering a sign board for the Unification movement. This sign board is actually so heavy, as all of you know, especially in Japan. People see the Unification movement as one of the worst cults, but I determine not to hide my beliefs and determine to proactively show my own beliefs and vision. (Applause) Why? Because, True Parents and the True Children are living like that. The True Family cannot hide their own background; they are shouldering the heavy sign board of the Unification movement, the heavy cross of the sins of our members. We have to live in the same way.
There is a verse in the Bible, “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you, don’t be discouraged for I am your God, I will strengthen you and help you, I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.” So this is the lesson from my 33 years of life. First, achieve outstanding results in society and good performance at school and work centering on God; do not hide your belief in God and the Unification movement. Be proud of our identity as blessed families. Finally, raise our voices proactively to society, to our friends, to our neighbors, to our relatives and to all the people around the world.
Next, I would like to talk about my current professional work. As I said before, I am working as a manager of international network chains at the Nippon Foundation. The Nippon Foundation is one of the largest in Japan and Asia. Their annual budget is three million US dollars or 300 billion Korean Won. The Foundation is working for education, public health and social welfare in more than 100 countries, so many financial resources are needed. It was founded in 1964 by a very influential figure in Japanese politics. He also became the first honorary president of Victory Over Communism (VOC). He has been very supportive of the Unification movement in the early days and died in the 1990s. But, the current chairman is the founder’s son, and his brother was an influential politician of the Democratic Party of Japan. I am now working very closely with the current chairman and travelling with him all around the world. I informed all the board members of the Foundation of my religious background but they accepted me and acknowledged me, and my performance at my job.
Let me explain about the founder of the Nippon Foundation, because it is a good example in terms of thinking about the possibilities for the Unification movement. In the early 1960s, at the very beginning of our Unification movement in Japan, he was moved and energized by cheerful young members of the Unification movement and supported our members and our movement. He met True Father for the first time in Tokyo in February 1965. In June 1967, there was a historic meeting with True Father to prepare for the Asian Federation for Victory over Communism.
In April 1968, the International Federation for VOC was founded and he became the first honorary president. In the 1970s, he introduced the Unification Church and VOC to many politicians, including Prime Minister Kishi and another Prime Minister. Prime Minister Kishi visited the Unification Church in and said that he felt sympathy toward the Unification movement and hoped to strengthen this movement. He told me that he thought the young people of the Unification movement are truly pure, and he also said that he really expects them to develop and to take an important mission in saving Japan in the future.
Although this is story from 40 or 50 years ago, I think it is a hint or a lesson in thinking about the possibilities of the Unification movement. In God’s providence, God is always preparing an influential figure who will be able to lead thousands of people, millions of people, like John the Baptist. We have to find this kind of figure, John the Baptist; we have to capture the heart of the leader of leaders and we also have to raise leaders who can lead thousands of people in each field and we ourselves, members of the blessed families, should be leaders who can lead thousands of people. Then, we can move society, we can guide the government, we can change the world.
At the Nippon Foundation I am now working with various NGOs, political leaders, governments, academics, media and the UNO organizations such as WHO, the UN office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, to promote public health, education, social welfare and human rights. I have many meetings with each country’s president, Prime Minister and ministers from many countries through my work. I believe these efforts will connect to the vision of world peace and God’s providence in the future.
Let me introduce some examples of my work. This is his holiness the Dalai Lama. As you know, he is a Nobel peace laureate and a great religious leader fighting for the freedom of religion and autonomy of Tibet. I have been working with him and his office through the Foundation’s work. I invited him to an international conference and also visited his office of Tibet interim government in India. I have launched a new program together with him.
The second example is Mr. Ramos, former president of East Timor. He is also a Nobel peace laureate. I invited him to an international ceremony in Japan. East Timor itself is a very small country, but he is still active in international activities and engaged in some UN initiatives.
Next is the former minister of foreign affairs of Thailand. My Foundation collaborated on projects with him. The relationship continues and I have also invited him to several conferences, ceremonies and symposiums.
This is Mr. Walter, the first president of Czech Republic and the renowned leader in the fight against Communism who died in 2011. My Foundation, together with Mr. Walter, had co-organized an annual international conference named Forum 2000. In Czech Republic, for more than 15 years, they have been inviting distinguished world leaders of politics, academics, business, NGOs, media, culture and religions. As I mentioned before, leaders were also invited to this international conference. Relationships with many international figures have been made through this conference. I think this implicates a strategy, as an international NGO, to broaden and deepen its international network.
First, organize an annual international conference on broad and profound themes together with a symbolic and influential figure. Second, invite distinguished figures, VIPs and various leaders around the world. Third, make relationships with the invited leaders and connect to each project. I think we can learn something from this when thinking about the possibilities for the Unification movement. I am not a staff member of any Unification movement organization, so I do not know the details about our movement, but let me share my views from my work experience at an NGO and elements of the Unification movement. As you know, we have the media group Segye Ilbo in Korea, the Washington Times in the US, and one in Japan. Recently, Segye Ilbo published very influential articles on the secretary office of President Park. I am not familiar with them, but these articles were also quoted a lot by not only Korean media, but also by major Japanese newspapers. In Japan, a small newspaper has good relationships with some political leaders, academics and journalists so the chairman of the Nippon Foundation also reads it every morning and he recognize it as a good newspaper. It also covered the works of the Nippon Foundation many times, so they have a good relationship with each other.
The second example is approaching the UN human rights council on the topic of abduction and confinement as an issue of freedom of religion. Together with outside NGOs such as Human Rights Without Frontiers, I am working with the UN office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, so I know that UN bodies and offices have to be aware of the facts contained in official statements or reports submitted by NGOs and governments. I feel this approach is good practice from a strategic perspective.
In order to think about the possibilities for the Unification movement, I would like to try a simple analysis of the Unification movement. I listed the strengths of our movement from the perspective of an individual. Number one, family values. As I said before in my testimony, true marriage and true family and true family values through the Marriage Blessing are the most important core values of our common purpose and strength of our movement.
The birth rate among blessed families is very high, whilst the birth rate in Japan, Korea and many developed countries is very low and decreasing. This is becoming a serious problem for these countries’ sustainability. Whilst we stress the importance of family values and absolute sex, meaning absolute love between husband and wife, society in general does not uphold these kinds of values. Thus, the birth rates in society are high and increasing. Nobody can stop family breakdown.
Number two: with regards to second and third generation Unificationists, I believe we have good youth education programs, such as Junior STF and the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP), but that they are not yet perfect. The number of young members in other religions is decreasing as they find it difficult to religiously educate the youth.
Number three: inter-religious movement and freedom of religion. We have been promoting dialogue between different religions whilst the world is facing a serious clash of civilizations, terrorism based on religions and conflict between different denominations and religions. This may present an opportunity for the Unification movement to uniquely contribute to society on an international level. In addition, fighting for freedom of religion and the promotion of faith-based NGOs would be a good [moment] to corroborate with other religions and renowned faith leaders.
Number four: worldwide foundation and various figures of Unification Movement organizations. As you know, we have a foundation of blessed families and missionaries in every corner of the world. We have a very broad network of organizations from politics and business, to media, education and the arts etc. If we can utilize this foundation and take a strategic approach, I believe that we can achieve something great.
At the same time, however, we also have serious weaknesses within us. I think that it is also important to recognize our weaknesses in order to develop our movement. First of all, we are often labeled as a cult; second, we are not open, not transparent. Ordinary people do not know who we are or, in fact, what we are thinking or doing. That is why they are afraid of us and they label us as a cult. Unfortunately we are not unified amongst ourselves, we do not represent true unification and are fighting and criticizing each other. These weaknesses are so serious that they cannot be ignored. Without overcoming them, we cannot develop further. I think that the strategy we should adopt is very simple. Strengthen the strengths; overcome the weaknesses. To overcome the weaknesses, we should be obedient and sincere and should endeavor to explain the vision of our movement to society. We must be transparent and open ourselves. All members should be unified, we should represent true unification. Then we can strengthen our strengths.
This is my recommendation regarding the development of the Unification movement. Our greatest strength is our strong family values and so we must try to become the true Family Federation for World Peace and Unification promoting family values, absolute sex, and true love between husband and wife, parents and children and brothers and sisters. As I mentioned when sharing about my life story at the beginning, I believe our most powerful conviction is the value of true love, through the relationship between husband and wife and parents and children. If we truly strengthen this quality, we will be able to resolve many problems in society, such as family breakdown, high divorce rates, low birth rates and child abuse. We could also propose concrete family policies together with academies, NGOs and research institutions and could also utilize mass media as well as social media for these family campaigns.
Secondly, we should invest our resources in the second and third generations, in order to raise leaders who can lead thousands of people. First, we must maximize young energy and talent to move VIPs in society, just in the early days of our church. We must encourage the second generation and blessed families to raise their voices in society. We must nurture our second generation and send them to work in fields such as politics and government, law, NGOs, academia and media, whilst providing faith education. This is just an example for your consideration. If we can send 100 second generation Unificationists to top universities across all countries every year, we would have 400 students at top universities, such as Seoul University, Tokyo University and Harvard University. Those top second generation Unificationist university students must go on exchanges with each other as well as be educated at Sun Moon University, like I was. Within ten years, we will have a pool of 1000 professional leaders amongst the second generation Unificationists in each country.
For example, centering on the 120 leaders of the Unification movement, we will have 120 government officials, 120 local or national politicians, 120 professors of universities, 120 journalists, 120 lawyers and 120 business leaders in each country. This kind of pool of human resources will be a very strong foundation for our movement and I think this is not just a product of my imagination, but a realistic plan if we invest our resources properly.
The third point of strength is our promotion of inter-religious dialogue. We will be able to organize side events at United Nations conferences, cooperating with faith-based NGOs in order to establish an Abel UN. We can also publish a series of articles on religions and faith-based NGOs in our various newspapers and publications, including Segye Ilbo and the Washington Times. We could establish a program of inter-religious leadership at Sun Moon University with other universities and seminaries. In the fight for freedom of religion, we can utilize our experience in approaching the UN Human Rights Council and human rights NGOs about abduction and confinement. We could cooperate with other religions which face human rights violations due to their beliefs.
As a fourth strength, we can utilize the worldwide foundation and various fields of the Unification movement organizations. We must, first and foremost, strengthen blessed families’ sense of membership and ownership toward Unification movement organizations such as Family Federation, Womens’ Federation, Youth Federation, CARP, VLC and UPF. We must promote things such as missionary work, second generation Unificationists studying abroad with other host blessed families, educational international exchange programs among the members and internships or volunteer programs at Unification movement organizations. We must also organize an annual international conference and invite distinguished figures, a point I previously mentioned. We must cooperate with other NGOs and organizations by participating in other organizations’ events, engaging in continuous dialogue and inviting VIPs and experts to our conferences and initiatives. These are four recommendations for the development of the Unification movement from my professional experience of working with an international NGO.
Finally, my conclusion, in order to build the kingdom of heaven on earth in accordance with Vision 2020, we need to find, nurture and empower leaders who can lead thousands of people, connect these people beyond their respective fields, organizations and countries and make a collective impact. We must strengthen our strengths and overcome our weaknesses. Let us be united as one. Let us become one family under God. Then, God will strengthen us, God will help us and God will be with us. Thank you very much for your patience and listening to my presentation.