East Africa: Regional Top Gun 7-Day Preparation Workshop
By FFWPU East Africa: 55 Youths from 11 countries in East Africa attended the Regional 7-Day Workshop from December 18-25, 2015 in preparation for the 21-Day Africa/Asia Top Gun workshop in February 2016. Among them 27 boys and 28 girls.
The program started every day with Hoon Dok Hwe from 5:00 to 7:00 mainly guided by Rev. Bakary Camara, the Regional President, who came everyone morning. From the beginning of the workshop, he asked them to meditate on 1) finding the Heavenly Parent 2) finding True Parents and 3) finding my true self. The Regional President encouraged each and everyone to know that the church is where True Parents are and the True Family exist. Going to church should be seen more as going where I can find my true family. He also warned everyone against seeing each other as sexual partners instead of brothers and sisters.
Rev. Jean Augustin Ghomsi taught the Divine Principle with much emphasis on the Principle of Creation, the Fall of Man, the Last Days, Mission of the Messiah, Resurrection and Restoration.
Some elder first generation were invited to share their testimonies of how they joined the church and the challenges they faced and how they overcame them. They were Rev. Lawrence Banda, Vice-National Leader of Zambia, Rev. William Chimfwembe, National Leader of Botswana; Rev. Darkwell Sakala, National Leader of Lesotho; Mrs Jacqueline Mutewa and Mrs. Hildegard Faerber. This helped to build the bond between the youths and their parents.
The Chair of UPF Zambia, General Nathaniel Malimba Masheke was also invited to share how he met the Unification Movement and what he thinks of our True Parents. He said he was introduced to this Movement in 1989He encouraged the youths to be true to themselves and not pretend to be something they are not. “Don’t admire others. None of us is less a person than any other. Be grateful for what you have. God knows why he made you short or tall.” He said True Parents are among the few greatest people who have ever lived.
After the 7 Days there was an extra 3 days for Divine Principle and Family Pledge Tests, entertainment, sports day and Youth Service Day. On Saturday December 26, there was a visit to Kabwat Orphanage were groceries were donated to the children on behalf of True Mother. They also spent some time by the Lusaka Botannical Garden and Zoo.
The graduation ceremony took place on December 27 during Sunday Service where certificates and prizes were given to the best participants, best in Divine Principle and Family Pledge Tests, the best performing artists and sports groups.
Sister 1: “Through the workshop, I have also become more aware of my fallen nature, and I have made goals and the determination to work on and overcome them. I truly want to become a better person who can give joy to God as well as love to the people.”
Brother 1: “This workshop has opened my eyes and inspired me to make spiritual goals that will benefit me and my brothers and sisters. I now know my position in the True Family where God is the Creator. The Grandparent and True Parents are our parents to whom we have to engraft our lineage to and as a child who is lost must find a way back to the family.”
Sister 2: “My spiritual growth here in Zambia, really improved and I was really able to discover what is really going on in different places which widened my heart. I discovered that if you are sick and put God in your life, the sickness disappears and I was able to learn how to overcome the physical desires to develop spiritual desires. I discovered the heart of God and True Parents by experiencing it myself.”
Brother 2: “I have learnt God and True Parents have to be the center of my life. Without True Parents I am an orphan. Without True Parents I cannot inherit God’s parental heart. When we visited Kabwat Orgphanage I came to realize that all of humankind are orphans. We lost our Parent God because of the Fall and True Parents are sacrificing everything to raise me as their own, and return me to God at their own cost. They are paying a heavy price for me and the rest of humanity.”