New Zealand: Younger Generation Workshop
FFWPU New Zealand, April 9-12, 2015 Parnell Peace Embassy: In conjunction with the regular school break, Family Federation for World Peace and Unification New Zealand (FFWPU-NZ) holds a workshop for its younger generation members at Parnell Peace Embassy, Auckland from 9th to 12th of April 2015. A total of 18 younger ones aged between 8 and 15 years old took part in the on-going effort to impart the values and traditions of our True Parents. The workshop was coined by Rev Julius Gicole, Director of FFWPU-NZ, conceptualized by Mr Takashi Sawada, Youth Pastor of FFWPU-NZ and executed by the full-time staffs, Mr Johannes Junior Anae and Mr Andrew Halim. Mrs Jasmin Gicole and Mrs Miyuki Hanslikova provided the invaluable motherly support for all participants and staffs. Thanks to the sacrifices and hard work of everyone involved, the workshop had a successful outcome where younger generation members learned spirituality and core values in greater depth, along with the opportunity for them to interact with one another and build a meaningful bond that lasts.
This year’s theme revolves on the development of “5 Core Values Crucial to Hauora,” which refers to the involvements of four important dimensions for health and well-being of a person: physical, mental & emotional, social and spiritual dimensions. The first day of the workshop focuses on the mental aspect of Hauora that started off with the regular orientation, ice-breaking and team building sessions for all our participants. We also welcomed a non-member participant, Dolier, who is a close friend of Otomo Hanslikova, one of our young 2nd generation members.
The lectures on the first day were handled by Andrew, where participants learned the topics of “Vertical Alignment,” “Pursuit of Happiness” and “Meditation & Fruits of the Spirits.” As one of the five core values that are crucial to our beliefs, Andrew explained the orderly pattern of vertical relationships that we need to develop step-by-step, in order to build a lasting and meaningful relationship with our Heavenly Parents eventually. In Pursuit of Happiness, Andrew tried to arrange an activity that involved participants to create their own ideal schedule that enables them to realize the pursuit of wholesome happiness, in their own groups.
He asked them to calculate the number of hours spent for the week for God, Family and Self; after which participants were made to realize the imperfections of the schedules they made, along with the inconsistency they exhibit in real life. He explained that the time we spend in our daily lives are reflective of the degree of importance we put in to each of the categories, so as to create a wholesome happiness that benefits us not just as an individual, but more importantly, as filial and Divine Sons and Daughters of God.
The first lecture of the day that follows was done by Junior to cover the third core value, “Taking Ownership.” Junior explained the importance of taking ownership of our own actions and the environment around us, through real-life situations such as bullying, peer pressure, homework and other related topics that the youths can closely relate to. He urged everyone to actively look for ways in their daily lives and surroundings, to apply taking ownership based on the fundamental teachings of our True Parents.
Then, Master Seti Suafa and Rev Julius Gicole took turns to give impromptu presentations. Master Seti shared on “Personal Belief” that explains our spiritual beliefs with God in greater details. Afterwards, Rev Gicole described the Four Main Characteristics of Fallen Natures; arrogance, jealousy, anger and deceit; along with the Seven Deadly Habits that are both the manifestation and catalyst of the fallen natures; complaining, judging, lying, excuses, negativity, gossiping and dogmatism. They both considerately presented their lectures through examples that the children could follow as well.
The third day focuses on the social aspect of the participants’ well-being. After the morning routine, the younger generation members went to Parnell Bath to swim and spend time with each other casually, so as to strengthen their bonds with each other. After they returned, Mr Takashi Sawada, the brain behind the planning of the workshop’s programs, gave a lecture entitled “Creating a Better World;” centring on the core value “Living For the Sake of Others.” With the presentation having videos as visual aid, it was also supported with an activity which required the younger ones to write down what they can do now to bring about a world of peace.
The last component of the day and perhaps the workshop in general, involved the practice of “Living For the Sake of Others,” through singing as FFWPU Children’s Choir at the UPF Monthly Meeting held at the very same venue, Parnell Peace Embassy in the evening of 11 April 2015. Although the amount of practice we had was limited, the choir sang harmoniously before the crowd of audience with respectable positions in their community.
The last day of the workshop centred on the spiritual dimension of Hauora through attending our Heavenly Parents and True Parents through FFWPU Sunday Service. Everyone sang one last time before their parents and other members, in order to honour our True Parents for whom the lyrics were appropriately modified. The end of the service meant to official closure of this break’s younger generation workshop. Although we were somewhat limited in terms of preparation time and manpower, with the help of the Spirit World, we were glad to have all contributed in one way or another in bringing the workshop to a respectable conclusion. We hope that participants have gained something precious during this workshop, carry the values they’ve learned inside their hearts, and start exercising all these things for the sake of the people and the world around us.