Cambodia: Divine Principle Education Program
Left, Mrs. Ursula McLackland the Secretary General of UPF-Asia; Right, Mr. Sophol, the National Leader of Cambodia
By UPF Asia, Robert Kittel: We just concluded a 2-day Divine Principle education program for 150+ Cambodian educators of the highest caliber. They included: 20 university presidents, 100 high school principals, 40 officials from the Ministry of Education and Youth Union. Please see the attached photos.
The spirit was amazingly high. They all came on time—in fact, they were seated in the hall an hour before the program was to begin, so we actually started early. They all attended both days (April 21-22). They listened very well and there was good audience interaction. They had a few questions at the end of several presentations (Cambodians are a little shy) and asked repeatedly for the educational material. At the end of the program Mr. Hajime Saito concluded, “We lit a fire in the hearts of these people.” This is the power of teaching True Parents’ live-giving words!
Over two days, we had nine Divine Principle sessions. The last session on the second day was the signing the MOU between the Gov’t. of the Kingdom of Cambodia and UPF-Cambodia. The Minister of Education (whom they had met earlier) was planning to be there but was suddenly called by the Royal Palace. The signing ceremony went on anyway and the Minister of Education will actually sign the MOU later this week. Eight TV media groups covered the signing ceremony. There will be a follow-up program on May 3 – 4 with more educators, especially teachers and parents.
Signing the MOU between UPF-Cambodia and the Ministry of Education, Gov’t. the Kingdom of Camb
The stadium seats 50,000 people. Many of the “chairs” are actually “benches” so the number could easily grow to 70,000 or 80,000 or even more. At the end of the program the Director of 500 public high schools publicly said he would strongly support this event. Under him are 80,000 high school students. There are a similar number of university students in the capital Phnom Penh. It seems quite likely that the event on May 29 will be a grand success but we need to push until the very end.
Supporting in the background, Speaker Jose de Venecia from the Philippines wrote a letter directly to the Prime Minister Hun Sen of Cambodia. It was sent via diplomatic channels and by all indications we are assured of PM’s support. In fact, the Prime Minister asked that his son, H.E. Sun Many, who is also Deputy Prime Minister, to be the Chief Guest from the Cambodia side on May 29. We were very happy with this request.
Cambodia has had a terrible history under communism. Because of this they really cherish peace. The theme for this seminar was “Sustaining the Tradition of Cambodian Peace.” Peace is not something they take for granted or lightly. When True Father’s life was taught on the second day, there was pin-drop silence showing the highest respect for our True Parents.
Right, the Sec. Gen of UPF-Cambodia, Mr. Sok Seng Yan; Left, Director of Public High Schools in Phnom Penh with 80,000 students
Importantly, the Cambodian family structure is quite strong, especially compared to neighboring nations. The PM has only one wife; they have five children. He is always seen in public with his wife and shows affection to her (according to Cambodian customs, i.e. holding hands, kissing on the cheek). In the past the PM has even used the military to destroy centers of prostitution in Cambodia. I was advised before the program to teach strongly—without fear or hesitation—about our True Father’s concept of Absolute Sex.
In closing, I would like to offer my sincerest appreciation to our Heavenly Parent and True Parents for their support and prayers. This is the age of the Pacific Rim and True Father’s Absolute Sex philosophy is urgently needed globally and easily received in Asia. True Mother’s Vision 2020 goal is driving us all. When I tell the audience not to adopt the culture of extreme selfish individualism and free sex from the West… they clap spontaneously and loudly. Because of True Parents teachings they have hope to protect their children and their nation!!! We are so grateful and indebted to our True Parents.
The General Director of the Ministry of Education
Mr. Hajime Saito, the Regional Director for Indo-China
UPF Staff that organized the conference