New York City - Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, wife of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon and International President of the Women's Federation for World Peace, will conduct a 25-city speaking tour in the United States and Canada, beginning in Washington DC on March 19. Dr. Moon will speak in New York on Sunday, March 21, and the North American leg of her tour will conclude in Toronto on April 12. After North America she will continue on to 32 more countries, having completed a 24-city tour of Korea and Japan with the Reverend Moon earlier this year.
In the last three years, Reverend and Dr. Moon have held three public marriage ceremonies; in 1997 in Washington, DC, in 1998 in New York's Madison Square Garden, and in February of this year in Seoul's Olympic Stadium. This tour's purpose is to meet even a small portion of the participating couples. Those attending her speech, although representing a variety of faiths , will share a reverence for the sanctity of marriage and family under God.
Dr. Moons speech, entitled, "The Path of Life for All Humankind," explains the need for true love in the family and the path for the family to achieve lasting happiness. Dr. Moon believes that ours is a time in which families can make a giant leap forward in their spirituality, ultimately achieving far greater happiness and fulfillment than in the past. These families will then form the basis for an ideal society and ideal world and fulfill the mandate to build God's Kingdom on earth. Her speech also examines the reality of the spirit world and how to prepare for that step in our path of life.
"Men and women come together as pairs to build families, societies, nations and the world. Thus the family centering on one man and one woman must be the model for the tribe. This tribe, in turn, must be the model for the nation. Families must strive to achieve the ideal family, tribe and nation. Therefore, until ideal families appear, ideal nations will never emerge," said Dr. Moon.
On the foundation of family renewal, says the 56-year old spiritual leader, religions can come to a consensus on the ways that make for peace, uniting to influence government and culture for positive change.
Through the teachings of Reverend and Dr. Moon, hundreds of thousands of families around the world have come to a greater understanding of God's heart, His will for humankind and how to end the suffering of humankind - and God. Reverend and Dr. Moon have personally walked this course and serve as an example of how to practice unconditional love and to sacrifice oneself for the sake of others.
Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, the International President of the Women's Federation for World Peace, has dedicated her life to the quest for peace. Along with her husband, the famous evangelist Reverend Sun Myung Moon, she has worked with heads of state, Nobel Peace Prize winners, religious leaders and internationally renowned artists.
Dr. Moon was born in the village of Sinli in the Anju District, now called North Korea, on January 6, (lunar), 1943. Her mother, Mrs. Hong, was an earnest Christian and her father was a disciple of a famous evangelist, Rev. Young Do Lee. Their family was persecuted by the North Korean Communists and in 1948, when Dr. Moon was 5 years old, she and her mother were arrested by Communist police and jailed for 11 days.
After their release, Dr. Moon, her mother and her grandmother fled their village in the middle of the night . They went to Taegu where they lived through the Korean war and where Dr. Moon was reared in a religious environment.
The family later moved to Choon Chun, where Dr. Moon's uncle was living, and she soon graduated from elementary school in that city. During this period Dr. Moon, along with her mother, joined the newly formed Unification Church. Five years after joining, on April 11, 1960, the young Dr. Moon married the church's founder, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. She stands as co-founder of the Unification Church, equal in stature to her husband.
Central to Reverend and Dr. Moon's work is the sanctification of marriages with the goal of creating strong, God-centered families. These wedding ceremonies have expanded in size from 36 couples in 1961 to more than 70 million couples last year.
Dr. Moon is the mother of 13 children and the grandmother of 21 grandchildren.
Dr. Moon shares with her husband a great love of the outdoors. Fishing is one of their favorite pastimes and she has caught trophy-size fish the world over. She was also instrumental in the creation of the Deer Park Equestrian Center in upstate New York, which boasts one of America's finest arenas for equestrian competitions.
Dr. Moon and her husband are lovers and patrons of the arts. Several decades ago they founded the Little Angels Performing Arts School in Seoul, Korea. Its ballet corps, called the Little Angels Children's Folk Ballet, has performed before world leaders and royalty.
She and her husband are also patrons of the New York City Symphony, which the New York Daily News acclaimed as "one of America's finest orchestras."
Mrs. Moon and her husband recently founded the Universal Ballet Academy in Washington, DC, which trains young dancers in the Russian style with masters from the Kirov Ballet of St. Petersburg. Dancers from the school recently won an unprecedented number of gold medals in international competition. The Universal Ballet Company, which they founded, is now a preeminent classical troupe.
In 1968, the Reverend Moon established the Professors World Peace Academy in Korea, and in 1972 the first International Conference on the Unity of the Sciences was held. These and similar organizations have attracted the participation of scholars, scientists and leaders in the fields of religion, the media, government and the arts, including numerous Nobel Laureates. Dr. Moon played a crucial role in all of these developments, where her compassionate friendship completes her husband's challenging vision.
Through addressing informal gatherings of women at these activities, Dr. Moon began to make her appearance in the public sphere. Her addresses included an Address to the Women of the world Media Conference (October, 1981) and an Address to the Women of the International Conference on the Unity of the Sciences (November, 1981)
Dr. Moon moved forward on the world stage for the promotion of God-centered values in 1989, when Soviet media interviewed her. Her interview appeared in the Religion and Society section of Za Rubezhom (June 12, 1989)
The following year, Reverend and Dr. Moon met with Mikhail Gorbachev. This extraordinary event, which took place in the Kremlin on their 30th wedding anniversary, April 11, 1990, initiated an educational exchange, which has been developing ever since. In December of 1991, Dr. Moon put her life on the line when she and her husband traveled to North Korea to meet with President Kim Il Sung for the purpose of uniting the two Koreas.
In 1992, Dr. Moon, together with her husband, founded the Women's Federation for World Peace (WFWP). Dr. Moon was named its International President. She invested all her energy into developing a global base for the new organization, giving the Federation's inaugural speech in 113 cities in 12 countries, and in three different languages within an eight-month period. This impressive accomplishment was surpassed in 1993, during which she spoke in 43 nations and in all 50 of the United States.
The Women's Federation was officially inaugurated on April 10, 1992, when, despite inclement weather, 150,000 women from 72 countries gathered at Seoul Olympic Stadium. Following this international rally, Dr. Moon spoke in cities and towns throughout Korea. That fall, speaking in Japanese, Dr. Moon addressed a rally of 50,000 women in the Tokyo Dome. Subsequently, she delivered speeches to large audiences in Nagoya, Osaka, Hiroshima, Fukuoka, Sendai and Sapporo. Later that year, Dr. Moon continued her worldwide campaign with an eight-city tour of America in eight consecutive days.
Following her U. S. tour, Dr. Moon spoke in eight more cities in Germany, Great Britain, France, and Italy and finally in Moscow. She also visited the Pacific Rim, where she spoke in Australia, New Zealand and the Philippines before addressing 200 leaders of the Women's Federation of China (no relationship to WFWP) at Beijing's Great Hall of the People.
In July of 1993, after speaking throughout America, Dr. Moon's tour culminated with addresses on Capital Hill and at the United Nations, delivering a message of peace and religious reconciliation. While crisscrossing the continent, she was welcomed by hundreds of public officials from Maine to Hawaii, including 35 Governors, 131 Mayors, 25 US Senators and hundreds of prominent citizens and organizations.
Renowned citizens who lauded the tour included Ms. Maureen Reagan, Mrs. Coretta Scott King, Dr. Cecil Murray and Reverend Jerry Falwell. A call for the declaration of National Parents Day was entered into the Congressional Record in both the U. S. Senate and House, and the California State Senate issued a Certificate of Recognition. President Clinton signed into law a bill authorizing the last Sunday in July be recognized as, "National Parents Day". In dozens of states and cities, the day of her speech was declared the "National Parents Day"; the "Day of Women and World Peace"; or "Hak Ja Han Moon Day".
Senator Orrin Hatch introduced her to the audience of US Senators, Congressmen, their aides and other dignitaries on Capital Hill in the Dirksen Senate Office Building. The culmination of the American tour came when Mrs. Moon spoke to Ambassadors, counselors, attaches, UN representatives and other prominent guests in Conference at the United Nations. His Excellency Stoyan Ganev, President of the United Nations General Assembly, introduced her. Ambassadors from 67 nations were in attendance with nearly 100 nations represented in total.
More recently, Dr. Moon and her husband presided over the marriage blessing of millions of couples centering on Washington DC's RFK stadium in 1997; in Madison Square Garden in 1998 and in Seoul's Olympic stadium this year. Worldwide, more than 360 million couples have accepted Reverend and Dr. Moon's blessing on their marriage.
Dr. Moon is the recipient of many international honors and awards. For her humanitarian work and for her contribution to world peace, she has received honorary doctorates from Argentina's La Plata University and the University of Bridgeport, Connecticut. In addition she received the Medal of Brazil from that country's Ministry of Education.