France: Our Last Conversation
By FFWPU France: We had our last meetings with the Japanese Cheon Il Guk missionaries in France, who are going back to Japan.
The First Topic: Meeting God and making a personal relationship with Him as Parent and child
Haruka: in the beginning, there was one person I could not love, it was disturbing. I shared about it with Hisako (wife of National leader). Through talking with her, I started to realize something. God is giving me training, because He knows the goals that I had set in Japan, before coming to France. Then, I started to feel God’s love and that He is always with me. Still, I have to make more effort in the prayer life.
Ayaka: I was alone here in France after the 3 others went to Albania. One day, I could see the impressive video, live from Japan, where they officially change from Unification Church to Family Federation. It was a huge gathering in Tokyo. When I was watching this video, alone in France, so far away from this meeting, I felt God so strongly, and that I am responsible for His Providence. It means that I am on the front line. I am not just a church goer, a person who believes in God. I am on the front line of His Providence. Then, I felt sorry and sad, because I have no result. This made me cry very deeply, all alone, after watching this program. After crying deeply, my heart felt better. I felt that God gives me permission to continue.
Noriko: as you know, I spent 3 months in Albania and came back to France in December. At that moment, I felt so lonely in this team. And I wanted to be alone, by myself, not with my sisters. It was the end of the year 2015. I suddenly feel so homesick (furusato). I miss my house, my family, we are a warm-hearted family, and I miss this. My feeling of being homesick was so strong that I did not attend the evening prayer with the rest of the team. I was really struggling spiritually, and I become a confused person, self-centered. I tried to pray but felt so empty. Anyway, I went to bed. During the night, in a vivid dream, True Father suddenly appeared to me … in my house in Japan. Just Father and me, and my home. Father had brought holy salt. I offered chocolate to Father and he took just one piece, saying one is enough. Father with one piece of chocolate was so close to me. I am here, he kind of said to me. A few days after this dream, I met Marine, and she is my precious guest who studies the Principle.
Rika: already in Japan, and much more so in Europe, in this mission, I feel God’s love through the Hoon Dok Hae and the prayer. When we study the words of God together as a team, this is where God appears. He worries about our team. As a leader who experiences such a God, I struggle and become nervous. I don’t want to be a leader, I have so self-confidence, but God chose me, it is embarrassing. There is the love, there is the burden of responsibility also. Many times, I feel that I don’t believe in God enough. What helps me is to realize that we are God’s Temple. Whenever I feel that I am the Temple of God, and my sisters are also the temple of God, it is wonderful. But how to feel this? I am sorry to say that after 9 months, I could not love enough. How much I regret! How much I regret! (with tears)
The Second Topic: Becoming the ideal woman and preparing to be the bride
Noriko: I clearly want to apply for the Blessing, this is now my priority. Before applying for this mission, I wanted to develop a big love, like True Mother. I try to love people with a parental heart, and it is sometimes difficult. During this mission, I have to learn how to love each person, and it is a training for the Blessing. In the team life, we are constantly together, sleeping in the same room, always doing things together. In this team, I was the eldest among all. Sometimes, I want to say something, out my experience, but I hesitate and keep it inside. From this viewpoint, the team harmony can be stressful. On the other hand, I had many experiences when other sisters help me a lot and care for me when I am sick and tired.
Haruka: (deep tears). This topic of the ideal woman is difficult for me (muzukashi) …I have an image of what I want to be. But when I compare this ideal and the reality of my life … Any way, let us do it step by step, little by little (smiling).
Ayaka: an ideal woman, as I see it, should love God. True Mother is this person. When we love others from God’s point of view, we start to become ideal human beings. When the other Ayaka came to France and we were only two in the mission, most of my energy was for her. She needed stimulation and care. I determined to do almost everything I could for her, as if I am her mother. However, this attitude could sometimes become just external, and without a deep heart. We cannot just imitate the ideal, externally. It has to come from the heart. So I started to pray for her during 40 days, on this foundation, we could share deeply and I could understand her background much more internally.
Rika: I am thinking about the Blessing, after this mission is over. I can say honestly that I learnt from each person of the team, internally and externally. Together, when we are united, we become some kind of a collective ideal woman. Let me explain. From Haruka, I can learn how to cook very well. A housewife should cook for her family, right? (laughter). I am not good at cooking, but if I watch Haruka, I can change, also she is much better than me for organization and planning things ahead. Ayaka has a very good heart, especially for God. She has a good connection with Heaven. She can speak English and French easily. When I saw that, I made more efforts. Noriko has a balanced personality, internally and externally. She feels that it is important to clean, because it is her tradition at home. I discovered the importance of cleaning, it is good to become a housewife (laughter). Also, I realized that Noriko can understand other people’s situations more objectively than I do. She has a sense of others which is not mature in me.
The image of the ideal woman is not just vertical or theoretical. I could learn from each one of the sisters something concrete.
The Third Topic: Feeling joy through spiritual children
Ayaka: I had two similar dreams. In the dreams, I am holding a baby in my arms, but actually, I don’t care about the baby. Through these dreams, I could see the difference between having guests and caring for the guests as a parent. Hassini was my first close friend. She comes from a Hindu background but converted to Christianity 5 years ago. This itself was new to me, I mean people of this background. At a later stage, I had wonderful experiences with Catherine, from Belarus. She speaks Japanese and French perfectly, she came to the origami club many times and heard some lectures on the Principle. I loved her very much with all my heart; whenever we meet, the stimulation is here, I want to be with her. Recently, I could reach a deeper level still, when Sheherazade came to the center and Laurent started to teach her the Principle right away, first of all together with Maurane. When the lecturer, the spiritual parent and the child are together, intimately connected, it is best. Now, Sheherazade will continue to study with Didier and Yves.
Haruka: it is only in the last stage of my witnessing that I could bring someone to the Principle. I met Naoufal, from Morocco, on a very cold day. I was witnessing with Rika near Diderot. Naoufal sent an e-mail to me, saying that I had a beautiful smile. I was wondering what his motivation was. Anyway, he came to the origami club, and he liked the family atmosphere. When we had the one-day workshop a few days ago, I was struggling to invite him, because he never studied the Principle before. I asked Hisako what she thinks and we decided that to invite him is my portion of responsibility. His reaction is his own responsibility. He came in the afternoon, and was struggling with the content, because he is Muslim. But he asked sincere questions. After the workshop, I sent a letter to him, and he felt spirituality in this letter.
Noriko: I have had several guests, it is not so difficult form to bring them in. The case of Marine is different, however. She came in the beginning of January, after I had the dream with True Father. We understood that, a few weeks ago, she started to read the Bible by herself.
Marine comes from a chaotic family background, but her attitude in the center is good. Her main motivation to come is to receive God’s words. A few days ago, we made an appointment with her, and she came right on time, at 11 a.m. Didier started to give a detailed lecture to her, on the Fall. We were surprised. She took sheets of paper and she wrote everything down, listening to Didier very respectfully. Watching this made me happy. Until the end of our mission in France, we kept witnessing and recently, my guests became better and better. Maisa came recently and she immediately started to study the Principle. Didier and myself felt that she is amazingly prepared and promising. I have other guests also. I really like witnessing.
Rika: Today, Maurane is with us, sharing our dinner. When I met her, it was during the week where the whole team was supporting me to have a guest. On Tuesday, Laurent phoned to many of our guests, to explain to them what we are doing. She felt good with this telephone call, and the next day, she came to Parole Donnée with her best friend Cyrielle. Both are studying Korean. Cyrielle came to 3 Parole Donnée, but Maurane came to 4 and attended other programs also.
And she started to study the Principle, even attending the one-day workshop. The day before the workshop, Laurent taught her the Principle of Creation, and Didier joined in. Laurent told her that she should look at me as her spiritual mother. When I heard these words, my heart was filled with joy. I never experienced such a joy before. And a few days ago, Maurane offered to me a very small gift, which means so much to me (see the next slide)
Maurane: tonight, I feel like crying. Ever since I have been knowing you, I cannot sleep well. My mind is on fire. I have been knowing you for a short time, but it looks like we have always been knowing each other. When I am with you, I learn so much about life.
The Art of Bonding
The big heart on the hand of Maurane says daughter, the small heart on the hand of Rika says, mother
You were the last missionaries with whom I had a chance to work every day for the sake of witnessing. The mission called witnessing includes many events, many activities, many words also.
The words which remain forever in my mind are not lectures, or briefings, or sharing information, or official reports. Of course, we need to use the language for this purpose, but that is not the main thing.
The Unification church has appeared so that the deepest conversations might be possible. These conversations are informal, natural, but can be deep and have a flavor of eternity.
What remains forever is the genuine, heart-to- heart conversation among persons who are the image of the living God. God is a personal God, a God of heart. We can experience this divine heart when we share our inner feelings.