|Classification||New spiritual movement|
|Founder||Sun Myung Moon|
Seoul, South Korea
|Revised Romanization||Tong-il Gyo|
The Unification Church (UC), also called the Unification movement, is a worldwide new spiritual movement that was founded by and is inspired by Sun Myung Moon, a Korean spiritual leader, entrepreneur, anti-communist, and peace advocate.
The name "Unification Church" is not a reference to a particular religious organization or institutional structure with centralized international control over every organization associated with it. It is a nascent, spiritually-based and charismatically-led movement of legally independent organizations that range from businesses, news media, projects in education and the arts, and political and social activism. Considering that Moon repeatedly proclaimed the "end of religion" and his desire to not have a "church", the term Unification movement is a more apt way of describing the theology, organizations, and individuals associated with him.
In Moon's autobiography, he writes that his early followers:
"...hung out a sign that read 'Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity.' We chose this name to signify that we belonged to no denomination, and we certainly had no plans to create a new one... 'Unification Church' became our commonly known name later, but it was given to us by others."
Currently, the Unification Church is split into several groups, all of which claim legitimacy and the spiritual authority of Moon. These groups diverge theologically and doctrinally. The most prominent groups are the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification led by Moon’s widow Hak Ja Han Moon, who following Moon’s death announced her distinct messianic status; and the Family Peace Association, founded by Moon's son, Hyun Jin P. Moon. Due to the ongoing division, the future of the Unification Church or Unification movement and its theological and institutional legacy is in turmoil and yet to be defined.
- 1 Terminology
- 2 History
- 3 Beliefs
- 3.1 Divine Principle
- 3.2 Relations and differences with other religions
- 3.3 Esotericism
- 3.4 Spiritualism
- 3.5 Resurrection
- 3.6 Indemnity
- 3.7 The True Family
- 3.8 Ceremonies
- 4 Related organizations
- 5 See also
- 6 References
- 7 Annotated bibliography
- 8 External links
Moonie is a colloquial term sometimes used to refer to members of the Unification Church. This is derived from the name of the UC's founder Sun Myung Moon, and was first used in 1974 by the American media. Church members have used the word Moonie, including Moon himself, President of the Unification Theological Seminary David Kim, and Bo Hi Pak, Moon's aide and president of Little Angels Children's Folk Ballet of Korea. In the 1980s and 1990s the Unification Church of the United States undertook an extensive public relations campaign against the use of the word by the news media. Some journalistic authorities, including The New York Times and Reuters, now discourage its use in news reporting, although the BBC continues to.
Origins in Korea
Unification Church members believe that Jesus appeared to Mun Yong-myong when he was 16 years old on Easter morning of 1935 (April 17) and asked him to accomplish the work left unfinished because of his crucifixion. After a period of prayer and consideration, Mun accepted the mission, later changing his name to Mun Son-myong (Sun Myung Moon).
The UC's official teachings, the Divine Principle, was first published as Wonli Wonbon (원리 원본, "Original Text of the Divine Principle") in 1945. However, the earliest manuscript was lost in North Korea during the Korean War. A second, expanded version, Wonli Hesol (원리 해설), or Explanation of the Divine Principle, was published in 1957. Finally, its most propagated text, the Exposition of the Divine Principle was published in 1966.
Moon preached in northern Korea after the end of World War II and in 1946 was imprisoned by the communist regime in North Korea. He was released from prison by the advance of United Nations forces during the Korean War, and moved south along with many other North Koreans. He built his first church from mud and cardboard boxes as a refugee in Busan.
Moon formally founded the Unification Church in Busan on May 1, 1954, calling it "The Holy Spirit(ual) Association for the Unification of World Christianity". The UC expanded rapidly in South Korea and by the end of 1955 had 30 centers throughout the nation.
International expansion and controversy
Founding of international churches
In 1958, Moon sent missionaries to Japan, and in 1959, to America. Missionary work took place in Washington, DC, New York, and California. UC missionaries found success in the San Francisco Bay Area, where the UC expanded in Oakland, Berkeley, and San Francisco. By 1971, the Unification Church of the United States had about 500 members. By 1973, it had some presence in all 50 states and a few thousand members. In the 1970s, American Unification Church members were noted for their enthusiasm and dedication, which often included raising money for UC projects on so-called "mobile fundraising teams".
The UC also sent missionaries to Europe. The UC entered Czechoslovakia in 1968 and remained underground until the 1990s. Unification Church activity in South America began in the 1970s with missionary work. Later, the UC made large investments in civic organizations and business projects, including an international newspaper.
Starting in the 1990s, the Unification Church expanded in Russia and other former communist nations. Hak Ja Han, Moon's wife made a radio broadcast to the nation from the State Kremlin Palace. As of 1994, the UC had about 5,000 members in Russia. About 500 Russian students had been sent to USA to participate in 40-day workshops.
Moon moved to the United States in 1971, although he remained a citizen of the Republic of Korea. In the 1970s, he gave a series of public speeches in the United States, including one in Madison Square Garden in New York City in 1974; two in 1976 in Yankee Stadium in New York City; and one on the grounds of the Washington Monument in Washington, DC, where he spoke on "God's Hope for America" to 300,000 people. In 1975, the Unification Church held one of the largest peaceful gatherings in history, with 1.2 million people in Yeouido, South Korea.
Starting in 1972, the Unification Church sponsored the International Conference on the Unity of the Sciences, a series of scientific conferences. The first conference had 20 participants, while the largest conference in Seoul in 1982, had 808 participants from over 100 countries. Participants included Nobel laureates John Eccles (Physiology or Medicine 1963, who chaired the 1976 conference) and Eugene Wigner (Physics 1963).
In 1975 Moon founded the Unification Theological Seminary, in Barrytown, New York, partly in order to improve relations of the Unification Church with religious institutions. Professors from other denominations, including a Methodist minister, a Presbyterian, and a Roman Catholic priest, as well as a rabbi, were hired to teach Unificationist students.
In the 1980s Moon instructed UC members to take part in a program called "Home Church" in which they reached out to neighbors and community members through public service. In 1982, the first large scale Blessing ceremony held outside of Korea took place in Madison Square Garden in New York City with 2075 couples. In 1988, Moon matched 2,500 Korean members with Japanese members for a Blessing ceremony held in Korea, partly in order to promote unity between the two nations.
In 1991 Moon announced that UC members should return to their hometowns and undertake apostolic work there. Massimo Introvigne, who studied the Unification Church and other new religious movements, said that this confirmed that full-time membership is no longer considered crucial to UC members. On May 1, 1994 (the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Unification Church), Moon declared that the era of the Unification Church had ended and inaugurated a new organization: the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) would include Unification Church members and members of other religious organizations working toward common goals, especially on issues of sexual morality and reconciliation between people of different religions, nations, and races. The FFWPU co-sponsored Blessing ceremonies in which thousands of non–Unification Church married couples were given the marriage blessing previously given only to Unification Church members.
In the 1970s the Unification Church was accused of "brainwashing" by the newly-active anti-cult movement, which included Steven Hassan and some other former UC members. Some sociologists of religion tend to argue that these accusations were based on theories that for the most part have not gained acceptance among scholars. Other scholars, including some psychologists and psychiatrists, argue that brainwashing theories are widely endorsed within the academy at large. Eileen Barker, a sociologist of religion and the founder of INFORM (Information Network Focus on Religious Movements), argues that the Unification Church and other new religious movements of that time "demonstrably did not have access to the irresistible or irreversible techniques they were reputedly wielding".
Members of the Unification Church reported that they were forcibly deprogrammed by those who wanted to pull them out of it. In 1977, the Unification Church won a lawsuit in the United States against deprogrammers, as did some other groups about the same time. Since 1990, US courts have consistently rejected testimonies about brainwashing (mind control) and manipulation, stating that such theories were not part of accepted mainline science according to the Frye standard of 1923. In 1987, scholars with American Psychological Association rejected the hypotheses of those who accused new religious movements (such as the Unification Church) of brainwashing and coercive persuasion, stating that those "conclusions...cannot be said to be scientific in any meaningful sense".
In the 1970s and 1980s, the Unification Church became noted for its political activities, especially its support for United States president Richard Nixon during the Watergate scandal, its support for anti-communism during the Cold War, and its ownership of various news media outlets through News World Communications, an international news media conglomerate which publishes The Washington Times newspaper in Washington, DC, and newspapers in South Korea, Japan, and South America, which tend to support conservatism. The political activities of the Unification Church were opposed by some leftists. In 1976, members of the Youth International Party staged a marijuana "smoke-in" in the middle of a UC sponsored rally in Washington DC.
In 1977 the Subcommittee on International Organizations of the Committee on International Relations, of the United States House of Representatives, while investigating the Koreagate scandal found that the South Korean National Intelligence Service (KCIA) had worked with the Unification Church to gain political influence within the United States, with some members working as volunteers in Congressional offices. Together they founded the Korean Cultural Freedom Foundation, a nonprofit organization which undertook public diplomacy for the Republic of Korea. The committee also investigated possible KCIA influence on the Unification Church's campaign in support of Nixon.
In 1980 Moon asked UC members to found CAUSA International, an anti-communist educational organization based in New York. In August 1985, six years before the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the Professors World Peace Academy, an organization founded by Moon, sponsored a conference in Geneva to debate the theme, "The situation in the world after the fall of the communist empire." The conference was chaired by professors Morton Kaplan and Aleksandras Štromas.
In the early 1960s John Lofland lived with Unification Church missionary Young Oon Kim and a small group of American UC members and studied their activities in trying to promote their beliefs and win new members. Lofland noted that most of their efforts were ineffective and that most of the people who joined did so because of personal relationships with other members, often family relationships. Lofland published his findings in 1964 as a doctoral thesis entitled "The World Savers: A Field Study of Cult Processes", and in 1966 in book form by Prentice-Hall as Doomsday Cult: A Study of Conversion, Proselytization, and Maintenance of Faith. .
In 1977 Frederick Sontag, a professor of philosophy at Pomona College and a minister in the United Church of Christ., spent 10 months visiting church members in North America, Europe, and Asia as well as interviewing Moon at his home in New York State. He reported his findings and observations in Sun Myung Moon and the Unification Church, published by Abingdon Press. The book also provides an overview of Unification Church beliefs. In an interview with UPI Sontag compared the Unification Church with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and said that he expected its practices to conform more to mainstream American society as its members become more mature. He added that he did not want to be considered an apologist for the UC but a close look at its theology is important: "They raise some incredibly interesting issues."
In 1984 Eileen Barker published The Making of a Moonie based on her seven-year study of Unification Church members in the United Kingdom and the United States.Barker writes that she rejects the "brainwashing" theory as an explanation for conversion to the Unification Church, because, as she wrote, it explains neither the many people who attended a Unification Church recruitment meeting and did not become members, nor the voluntary disaffiliation of members.
Since 2003, the UC-related Universal Peace Federation's Middle East Peace Initiative has been organizing group tours of Israel and Palestine to promote understanding, respect, and reconciliation among Jews, Muslims, and Christians.
In 2003, Korean Unification Church members started a political party in South Korea, "The Party for God, Peace, Unification, and Home." An inauguration declaration stated the new party would focus on preparing for Korean reunification by educating the public about God and peace. A UC official said that similar political parties would be started in Japan and the United States.
Moon was a member of the Honorary Committee of the Ministry of Unification of South Korea. UC member Jaejung Lee had been once a Unification Minister of South Korea. Another, Ek Nath Dhakal, is a member of the 2nd Nepalese Constituent Assembly and a first Minister for Cooperatives and Poverty Alleviation Ministry of the Government of Nepal.
Founder's later years and death
In 2011 in Pyongyang, to mark the 20th anniversary of Sun Myung Moon's visit to North Korea, de jure President Kim Yong-nam hosted Hyung Jin Moon in the official residence. The latter donated 600 tons of flour to North Korean children of North Pyongan Province, the birthplace of Sun Myung Moon. Also, after the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, he donated $1.7 million to the Japanese Red Cross.
In 2009, Moon's autobiography, As a Peace-Loving Global Citizen (Korean: 평화를 사랑하는 세계인으로), was published by Gimm-Young Publishers in South Korea. The book became a bestseller in Korea and Japan.
In 2010, Forbes reported that Moon and Han were living in South Korea while their children took more responsibility for the day-to-day leadership of the Unification Church and its affiliated organizations.
On August 15, 2012, Moon was reported to be gravely ill and was put on a respirator at the intensive care unit of St. Mary's Hospital at the Catholic University of Korea in Seoul. He died there on September 3, 2012.
In 2012 Moon was posthumously awarded North Korea's National Reunification Prize. On the first anniversary of Moon's death, North Korean president Kim Jong-un expressed condolences to Han and the family saying: "Kim Jong-un prayed for the repose of Moon, who worked hard for national concord, prosperity and reunification and world peace."
In general, most UC activities have continued, although some unprofitable business projects have been reduced or discontinued.
Succession and legacy
Dr. Hyun Jin Preston Moon was appointed vice-president of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification in 1998. Although at the time he was commonly understood to be the successor to Sun Myung Moon, his leadership style and proposed reforms to dismantle the church structure and create a family-based peace movement were met with resistance and accusations of being unorthodox, eventually leading to his replacement in 2008 with his younger brother, Hyung Jin Sean Moon. In the United States, Sun Myung Moon's daughter In Jin Tatiana Moon also became president. However, after Sun Myung Moon's death both Hyung Jin Sean Moon and In Jin Moon were removed from their positions within FFWPU by their mother Hak Ja Han.
Mrs. Hak Ja Han then took leadership over FFWPU. Hak Ja Han instigated various ritual and theological changes that were met with protest within the movement, most notably the elevation of her status as a distinct messianic figure through the concept of the "Only Begotten Daughter" and textual changes to the church's main textbook. Currently, FFWPU members praise Hak Ja Han's leadership and often refer to her as the "co-messiah" and "True Parents", signifying that they believe she is the legitimate successor within the Unification movement who is united with her husband. Recent FFWPU activities have included building projects and a revival tour.
Hyung Jin Sean Moon claims he is the rightful successor to Sun Myung Moon, referencing a coronation ceremony held in 2009. He accuses Hak Ja Han for unjustly removing him his position as International President of FFWPU and calls her new theology and rituals heretical. Hyung Jin Sean Moon founded a separate church, the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary Church, also known simply as "Sanctuary Church", in Newfoundland, Pennsylvania, which gained national attention in early 2018 for holding a marriage vows renewal ceremony that asked participants to bring their AR-15 rifles. Hyung Jin Sean Moon has likened the AR-15's to the biblical "Rod of Iron" . His followers refer to him as the "Second King".
In 2017 the elder son Hyun Jin Preston Moon founded the Family Peace Association as a separate entity, stating that it would carry on the trans-religious work his late father Sun Myung Moon sought to carry on with the establishment of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification. The Family Peace Association maintains that it was established to carry on the original mission of the FFWPU to expand certain universal principles and values related to God-centered families to a broader, non-sectarian audience.
Unification Church beliefs and traditions are contested amongst the different schisms. In the time period from 1954 to 1994, when the Unification Church was most commonly associated with the flagship organization Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity, its teachings included that God is the Creator whose dual nature combines both masculinity and femininity and whose center is love.
The Unification Church is among the minority of new religious movements who have introduced their own unique scriptures. The Divine Principle or Exposition of the Divine Principle (Korean 원리강론, translit. wonli ganglon) is the main theological textbook of the Unification Church. It was co-written by UC founder Sun Myung Moon and early disciple Hyo Won Eu and first published in 1966. A translation entitled Divine Principle was published in English in 1973.
The book lays out the core of Unification theology, and is held by believers to have the status of Holy Scripture. Following the format of systematic theology, it includes (1) God's purpose in creating human beings, (2) the fall of man, and (3) restoration – the process through history by which God is working to remove the ill effects of the fall and restore humanity back to the relationship and position that God originally intended. God is viewed as the creator, whose nature combines both masculinity and femininity, and is the source of all truth, beauty, and goodness. Human beings and the universe reflect God's personality, nature, and purpose. "Give-and-take action" (reciprocal interaction) and "subject and object position" (initiator and responder) are "key interpretive concepts", and the self is designed to be God's object. The purpose of human existence is to return joy to God. The "four-position foundation" is "another important and interpretive concept", and explains in part the emphasis on the family.
Eugene V. Gallagher commented: "The Divine Principle's analysis of the Fall sets the stage for the mission of Rev. Moon, who in the last days brings a revelation that offers humankind the chance to return to an Edenic state. The account in the Divine Principle offers Unificationists a comprehensive context for understanding human suffering."
Relations and differences with other religions
The Divine Principle includes new interpretations of the Bible not found in mainstream Christian traditions. From its beginning, the Unification Church claimed to be Christian and promoted its teachings to mainstream Christian churches and organizations. The Unification Church in Korea was labeled as heretical by Protestant churches in South Korea, including Moon's own Presbyterian Church. In the United States, the UC was rejected by ecumenical organizations as being non-Christian. The main objections were theological, especially because of the Unification Church's addition of material to the Bible.
Protestant Christian commentators have also criticized Unification Church teachings as contrary to the Protestant doctrine of sola fide. In their influential book The Kingdom of the Cults (first published in 1965), Walter Ralston Martin and Ravi K. Zacharias disagreed with the Divine Principle on the issues of Christology, the virgin birth of Jesus, the Unification Church's belief that Jesus should have married, the necessity of the crucifixion of Jesus, and a literal resurrection of Jesus as well as a literal Second Coming.
Jewish commentators, including Rabbi A. James Rudin of the American Jewish Committee in a 1976 report, have stated that Divine Principle contains pejorative language, stereotyped imagery, and accusations of Jewish deicide. In 1977 representatives from the American Jewish Committee, the National Council of Churches, and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York held a press conference to say that the Divine Principle contains antisemitic references and heresy. In the 1980s, UC leaders Mose Durst, Peter Ross, and Andrew Wilson expressed regret over some members' misunderstanding of Judaism, and urged better relations with the Jewish community. Moon himself has made some controversial statements about the Holocaust, including that its Jewish victims were paying indemnity for the crucifixion of Jesus.
In 1977 the Unification Church issued a rebuttal to Rudin's report, stating that it was neither comprehensive nor reconciliatory, but rather had a hateful tone and was filled with denunciations. It denied that the Divine Principle teaches antisemitism and gave detailed responses to 17 specific allegations contained in the AJC's report, stating that allegations were distortions of teaching and obscuration of real passage content or that the passages were accurate summaries of Jewish scripture or New Testament passages.
In 1984 Mose Durst, then the president of the Unification Church of the United States and himself a convert from Judaism, said that the Jewish community had been hateful in its response to the growth of the Unification Church, and placed blame both on the community's insecurity and on Unification Church members' youthful zeal and ignorance. Rudin, then the national interreligious affairs director of the American Jewish Committee, said that Durst's remarks were inaccurate and unfair and that "hateful is a harsh word to use." In the same year Durst wrote in his autobiography: "Our relations with the Jewish community have been the most painful to me personally. I say this with a heavy heart, since I was raised in the Jewish faith and am proud of my heritage."
The relationship between the Unification Church and Islam has often been noted, both by scholars and the news media. The Divine Principle lists the Muslim world as one of the world's four major divisions (the others being East Asia, Hindu, and Christendom). In 1997, Louis Farrakhan, the leader of the Nation of Islam, a Black Muslim organization, served as a coofficiator at a Blessing Ceremony presided over by Moon and Han. In 2000 the Church and the Nation of Islam co-sponsored the Million Family March, a rally in Washington, DC, to celebrate family unity and racial and religious harmony.
In 2009 the Unification Church held an interfaith event in the Congress of the Republic of Peru. Former President of the Congress Marcial Ayaipoma and other notable politicians were called "Ambassadors for Peace" of the Unification Church.
In 2010, the UC built a large interfaith temple in Seoul. Author Deepak Chopra was the keynote at an interfaith event of the Unification Church cohosted with the United Nations at the Headquarters of the United Nations.
In 2012, the Unification Church-affiliated Universal Peace Federation held an interfaith dialogue in Italy that was cosponsored by United Nations. That year, Unification Church affiliated Universal Peace Federation held an interfaith program for representatives of 12 various religions and confessions in the hall of the United Nations General Assembly. The President of the United Nations General Assembly, the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, the Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations and other UN officials gave speeches.
The Unification Church is said to have been esoteric in that it keeps some of its doctrines secret from nonmembers, a practice that is sometimes called "heavenly deception." In 1979, critics Tingle and Fordyce commented: "How different the openness of Christianity is to the attitude of Reverend Moon and his followers who are often reluctant to reveal to the public many of their basic doctrines." Since the 1990s, many Unification Church texts that were formerly regarded as esoteric have been posted on the UC's official websites.
The Divine Principle upholds a belief in spiritualism, that is communication with the spirits of deceased persons. Moon and early UC members associated with spiritualists, including the famous Arthur Ford.
Unification Church subscribes to the belief in resurrection, coming back to life after death. There are two concepts of resurrection detailed in the Divine Principle. The first is the resurrection of people on earth, who pass from death to life, and the second is the returning resurrection which will occur in the Last Days. The Divine Principle reveals the true meaning of these two.
The Divine Principle posits that departed souls can expiate their sins and achieve spiritual growth by "returning" to earth and cooperating with living people, leading them to fulfill their mission on earth and live in accordance to their conscience. The text cites a scripture justifying the concept: "Apart from us they may not be made perfect".
Unification Church theologian Young Oon Kim explained that returning resurrection is not the same as reincarnation. She emphasized that failure to make the distinction has led many dead people to try to "reincarnate", but wound up only possessing other people – to their mutual detriment.
Indemnity, in the context of Unification Church beliefs, is a part of the process by which human beings and the world are restored to God's ideal. The concept of indemnity is explained at the start of the second half of the Divine Principle, "Introduction to Restoration":
What, then, is the meaning of restoration through indemnity? When someone has lost his original position or state, he must make some condition to be restored to it. The making of such conditions of restitution is called indemnity. .... God's work to restore people to their true, unfallen state by having them fulfill indemnity conditions is called the providence of restoration through indemnity.
The Divine Principle goes on to explain three types of indemnity conditions. Equal conditions of indemnity pay back the full value of what was lost. The biblical verse "life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth" (Exod.21:23-24) is quoted as an example of an equal indemnity condition. Lesser conditions of indemnity provide a benefit greater than the price that is paid. Faith, baptism, and the eucharist are mentioned as examples of lesser indemnity conditions. Greater conditions of indemnity come about when a person fails in a lesser condition. In that case a greater price must be paid to make up for the earlier failure. Abraham's attempted sacrifice of his son Isaac (Gen. 22:1-18) and the Israelites' 40 years of wandering in the wilderness under Moses (Num.14:34) are mentioned as examples of greater indemnity conditions. The Divine Principle then explains that an indemnity condition must reverse the course by which the mistake or loss came about. Indemnity, at its core, is required of humans because God is pure, and purity cannot relate directly with impurity. Indemnification is the vehicle that allows a "just and righteous" God to work through mankind. Jesus' statement that God had forsaken him (Matt.27:46) and Christianity's history of martyrdom are mentioned as examples of this. The Divine Principle then states that human beings, not God or the angels, are the ones responsible for making indemnity conditions.
In 2005 scholars Daske and Ashcraft explained the Unificationist concept of indemnity:
To restart the process toward perfection, God has sent messiahs to earth who could restore the true state of humanity's relationship with God. Before that can happen, however, humans must perform good deeds that cancel the bad effects of sin. Unificationists call this 'indemnity'. Showing love and devotion to one's fellow humans, especially within families, helps pay this indemnity.
Other Christian commentators have criticized the concept of indemnity as being contrary to the Christian doctrine of sola fide. Radio and television evangelist Bob Larson said, "Moon's doctrine of sinless perfection by 'indemnity', which can apply even to deceased ancestors, is a denial of the salvation by grace offering through Jesus Christ." Christian historian Ruth Tucker said: "In simple language indemnity is salvation by works." Donald Tingle and Richard Fordyce, ministers with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) who debated two Unification Church theologians in 1977, wrote: "In short, indemnity is anything you want to make it, since you establish the conditions. The zeal and enthusiasm of the Unification Church members is not so much based on love for God as it is compulsion to indemnify one's own sins." The Unification Church has also been criticized for saying that World War I, World War II, the Holocaust, and the Cold War served as indemnity conditions to prepare the world for the establishment of the Kingdom of God.
The True Family
In Unification Church terminology, the True Family is the family of UC founder and leader Sun Myung Moon and his wife Hak Ja Han. Church members regard Moon as the Second Coming, and he and his wife as the "True Parents" of humankind, who have realized the ideal of true love as the incarnation of God's Word. Members of the Unification Movement generally address or refer to Rev. and Mrs. Moon as "Father" and "Mother" or "True Father" and "True Mother." Their children are known as the "True Children."
Sun Myung and Hak Ja Han are regarded to have achieved the status of True Parents on January 1, 1968, at the end of their "7-year course" of marriage together, representing the perfection of God's masculine and feminine aspects. Unification theology teaches that Jesus achieved this perfection only on the individual level and that had he not died on the cross, he would have married. It further teaches that, having married, he and his wife would have become "True Parents", created a "True Family", and would have saved humanity and perfected the world. Unfortunately Jesus was unable to complete his mission of perfecting the world and went the way of the cross, but his death was not a complete defeat because Jesus died for our sins giving us spiritual salvation. The primary mission of True Parents is to engraft all people on earth and in the spirit world to the original sinless lineage of God, removing them from the satanic lineage established at the fall of humanity (the original sin in the Garden of Eden).
The "Family Pledge" of the Unification Church is an eight-part promise of UC members to focus on God and His kingdom. Eight verses of the Family Pledge include the phrase "by centering on true love." For the first 40 years of the UC's existence, members recited the pledge on Sunday mornings at 5:00 a.m. Now they recite it every 8 days, on Ahn Shi Il: Day of Settlement and Attendance, which is the Unification Church's equivalent of a Sabbath. The first part says, "Our family, the owner of Cheon Il Guk, pledges to seek our original homeland and build the Kingdom of God on earth and in heaven, the original ideal of creation, by centering on true love."
The Unification Church is well known for its wedding or wedding vow renewal ceremony. It is given to engaged or married couples. Through it, members of the Unification Church believe, the couple is removed from the lineage of sinful humanity and engrafted into God's sinless lineage. The Blessing ceremony was first held in 1961 for 36 couples in Seoul, South Korea by the Moons shortly after their own marriage in 1960. All the couples were members of the UC. Rev. Moon matched all of the couples except 12 who were already married to each other before joining the UC.
Moon's practice of matching couples was very unusual in both Christian tradition and in modern Western culture and attracted much attention and controversy. Thousands of couples have been placed in marriages by religious leaders with people they had barely met, since Moon taught that romantic love led to sexual promiscuity. Their mass arranged marriage events have gained international public attention. Critics have stated that some of these marriages end in divorce, which is discouraged by the UC.
Later Blessing ceremonies were larger in scale but followed the same pattern. All participants were Unification Church members and Rev. Moon matched most of the couples. In 1982 the first large scale Blessing (of 2,000 couples) outside of Korea took place in Madison Square Garden, New York City. In 1988, Moon matched 2,500 Korean members with Japanese members for a Blessing ceremony held in Korea, partly in order to promote unity between the two nations. In 1992 Sun Myung Moon gave the wedding blessing for 30,000 couples at the Seoul Olympic Stadium and for 13,000 at the Yankee Stadium. In 1997 American civil rights activist, Baptist minister, television/radio talk show host and political adviser Al Sharpton and his wife Katherine took part in at least three ceremonies.
In 2013, four months after the death of Sun Myung Moon, Hak Ja Han presided over a Blessing ceremony for 3500 couples in South Korea, while another 24,000 participants took part in other countries via video link.
A Unification Church funeral (or seungwha) is a funeral ceremony held for the purpose of aiding the deceased person's transition to the spirit world and to celebrate his or her life among family and friends. Unification Church scholars writing on the UC's funeral customs cite the UC's main theological text the Divine Principle which says: "Man, upon his death, after his life in the visible world, goes to the invisible world in a spiritual body, having taken off his 'clothes of flesh' (Job 10:11), and lives there forever." They also note that family and other human relationships continue after death. The Unification Church does not uphold belief in reincarnation or eternal damnation. Unification Church theologian Young Oon Kim writes:
You and I are going to live forever. What does immortality signify? We are thinking animals and loving creatures. Those two faculties show our kinship to the eternal God. They make us part of the infinite spirit world. We will think and we will love forever. Thus, our wisdom will continually grow and our love can be enriched more and more. This is what Swedenborg taught. There will be no sharp break between life here and life hereafter. What we start here continues in quality and expands infinitely. The ever living God creates each of us to have fellowship with Him forever.
The seungwha ceremony was introduced by Unification Church founder Sun Myung Moon in 1984, at the time of the death of his son Heung Jin Moon. Church members who had died prior to this were given traditional Christian funerals. When the new and more distinct format was ordained, the official UC newspaper reported:
The use of the Chinese character meaning "Seung Hwa" is new and unique to this ceremony and is not commonly used. The character for "seung" means "ascending, elevation". The character "hwa" has meanings of "harmony and peace." The use of "seung hwa" was first instructed by Father at this time.
The ceremony itself consists of three parts: The Gwi Hwan Ceremony (or "returning to joy"), a farewell prayer service held by family members and close friends; the Seung Hwa Ceremony, (or "ascension and harmony"), a public ceremony celebrating the person's life featuring songs, testimonies, and an address most often by a UC pastor; and the Won Jeun Ceremony (or "returning home/to the palace"), the burial service. It is emphasized that the ceremony should have a joyful atmosphere since it is a celebration of the person's life and his or her transition to the spirit world. White and light colored clothing, rather than the traditional black, is worn by participants.
Cremation is discouraged in the Unification Church, although it is sometimes practiced especially in Japan where it is required by law. Unification Church cemeteries, or sections of existing facilities, have been established in South Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States.
The Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP) is a collegiate organization founded by Moon and UC members in 1955 that "promotes intercultural, interracial, and international cooperation through the Unification world view." J. Isamu Yamamoto states in Unification Church: "At times CARP has been very subtle about its association with the Unification Church, however, the link between the two has always been strong, since the purpose of both is to spread Moon's teachings."
The Little Angels Children's Folk Ballet of Korea is a dance troupe founded in 1962 by Moon and other UC members to project a positive image of South Korea to the world. In 1973 they performed at the Headquarters of the United Nations in New York City. The group's dances are based on Korean legends and regional dances, and its costumes on traditional Korean styles.
The Tongil Group is a South Korean chaebol (tongil is Korean for "unification") founded in 1963 by Moon as a nonprofit organization which would provide revenue for the UC. Its core focus was manufacturing but in the 1970s and 1980s it expanded by founding or acquiring businesses in pharmaceuticals, tourism, and publishing. Among Tongil Group's chief holdings are: The Ilwha Company, which produces ginseng and related products; Ilshin Stone, building materials; and Tongil Heavy Industries, machine parts including hardware for the South Korean military.
The Unification Theological Seminary, founded in 1975, is the main seminary of the international Unification Church. It is located in Barrytown, New York and with an Extension Center in midtown Manhattan. Its purpose has been described as training leaders and theologians within the Unification Church. The seminary's professors come from a wide range of faiths, including a rabbi, a Methodist minister, a Presbyterian, and a Catholic priest.
News World Communications is an international news media corporation founded by Moon in 1976. Hyun Jin Moon took over the company as chairman in 2009. It owns United Press International, The World and I, The Segye Ilbo (South Korea), and The Sekai Nippo (Japan). Until 2008 it published the Washington, DC–based newsmagazine Insight on the News. Until 2010, it owned The Washington Times, when Sun Myung Moon and a group of former Times editors purchased the Times from News World Communications. The Times is currently owned by diversified conglomerate Operations Holdings, also associated with the Unification Church.
The International Coalition for Religious Freedom is an activist organization based in Virginia, the United States. Founded by the Unification Church in the 1980s, it has been active in protesting what it considers to be threats to the freedom of religion by governmental agencies.
The Universal Ballet, founded South Korea in 1984, is one of only four professional ballet companies in South Korea. The company performs a repertory that includes many full length classical story ballets, together with shorter contemporary works and original full-length Korean ballets created especially for the company. It is supported by UC members with Moon's daughter-in-law Julia Moon, who was the company's prima ballerina until 2001, now serving as General Director.
The Women's Federation for World Peace is an organization whose stated purpose is to encourage women to work more actively in promoting peace in their communities and greater society. It was founded in 1992 by Hak Ja Han and is supported by the UC. It has members in 143 countries.
The International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace works to promote peace and understanding between potentially hostile nations.
Pyeonghwa Motors, founded in 2000, has invested more than $300 million in the automobile industry of the North Korea. Starting in 1992 the church established business ties with communist North Korea and owned an automobile manufacturer (Pyeonghwa Motors), a hotel, and other properties there. In 1998, the Unification Movement launched its operations in North Korea with the approval of the Government of South Korea, which had prohibited business relationships between North and South before.
As of December 1994, the UC had invested $150 million in Uruguay. Members own the country's largest hotel, one of its leading banks, the second-largest newspaper and two of the largest printing plants.
The Middle East Peace Initiative sponsors projects to promote peace and understanding including visits by international Christians to Israel and Palestine and dialogues between members of the Israeli Knesset and the Palestinian Legislative Council.
The Sunmoon Peace Football Foundation founded by the UC in 2003 sponsors the Peace Cup, an invitational preseason friendly association football tournament for club teams, currently held every two years. It is contested by the eight clubs from several continents, though 12 teams participated in 2009. The first three competitions were held in South Korea, and the 2009 Peace Cup Andalucia was held in Madrid and Andalusia, Spain. In 1989, Moon founded Seongnam FC, a South Korean football team.
Several UC-related groups are working to promote sexual abstinence until marriage and fidelity in marriage and to prevent child exploitation; they care for victims of Thailand's sex trade as well. In 1996, Unification Church gathered 3,500 signatures during its anti-pornography campaign. A UC official said, "pornography makes love seem temporal, pure love goes beyond the sexual relationship."
Yongpyong Resort. Yoshifu Arita, a well-known investigative journalist and currently a member of Japan’s House of Councilors, reported: “The church is the largest shareholder of the Yongpyong ski resort, with 49.9% of shares. In addition, the Segye Ilbo newspaper founded by the church (called Sekai Nippo in its Japanese edition) owns another 12.59%. In other words, for all intents and purposes, the resort is owned by the Unification Church. In books and other UC publications, the hotel, condominiums, ski slopes and other facilities are introduced as ‘sacred territory.’ The site has also been the venue for ‘special training seminars’ attended by Japanese UC members, at which founder Moon Sun Myung... participated. You can also see Winter Sonata spin-off goods on sale there. Naturally I suppose a travel agency affiliated with the Unification Church has tied up with Japanese tour operators to promote tourism to the area. The UC is most likely to benefit from the holding of the Olympics here. In South Korea, the UC enjoys the status of “zaidan hojin” (foundation) and is recognized in Korean economic circles."
- Introvigne, Massimo. "From the Unification Church to the Unification Movement, 1994-1999: Five Years of Dramatic Changes". www.cesnur.org. CESNUR - Center for the Studies on New Religions. Retrieved 10 February 2018.
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Just to be clear, it’s the Unification Church, but it’s also not the Unification Church. Basically, after Sun Myung Moon died, a bunch of other people started their own splinter groups, including his wife, his eldest son and his youngest son.
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- Moon-struck, Time, October 15, 1973, "The core members—most in their 20s, many of them converts from other spiritual, psychological or political trips—display a dogged devotion that makes even Jehovah's Witnesses look like backsliders. They are enthusiastic capitalists who rise at dawn to hit the streets with wares to exchange for "donations": flowers, votive light candles, even peanuts. Last year, when Master Moon moved his international headquarters to Tarrytown, N.Y., members sold candles across the U.S. for seven weeks to meet the down payment of $300,000 on an $850,000 estate".
- "Czechs, Now 'Naively' Seeking Direction, See Dangers in Cults", New York Times, February 14, 1996
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- The Moonies in Moscow: a second coming?, Green Left Weekly, May 28, 1997. "With the dismantling of the Soviet Union in 1991, Moon's anticommunism lost much of its camouflage value. There was, however, the compensating possibility of being able to expand his operations into Russia – both with the bible, and with business. One of Moon's schemes in Russia during the early 1990s was reportedly to rent Red Square for a mass wedding ceremony of the type practised by his sect in many cities around the world, in which scores and perhaps hundreds of couples – selected for one another by UC leaders, and introduced only a few days previously --are married simultaneously. This plan came to nothing. The most that was achieved was that Moon's wife was allowed to broadcast from the stage of the Kremlin Palace of Congresses".
- A Less Secular Approach, The Saint Petersburg Times, June 7, 2002
- Schmemann, Serge (July 28, 1993). "Religion Returns to Russia, With a Vengeance". The New York Times.
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"1. The Unification Theological Seminary
- a. The Unification Church has a seminary in Barrytown, New York called The Unification Theological Seminary.
- b. It is used as a theological training center, where members are prepared to be leaders and theologians in the UC.
- c. Moon's seminary, however, has not only attracted a respectable faculty (many of whom are not members of the UC), but it also has graduated many students (who are members of the UC) who have been accepted into doctoral programs at institutions such as Harvard and Yale."
- Korean Moon: Waxing or Waning Leo Sandon Jr. Theology Today, July 1978, "The Unification Church purchased the estate and now administers a growing seminary where approximately 110 Moonies engage in a two-year curriculum which includes biblical studies, UC history, philosophy, theology, religious education, and which leads to a Master of Religious Education degree."
- Dialogue with the Moonies Rodney Sawatsky, Theology Today, April 1978. "Only a minority of their teachers are Unification devotees; a Jew teaches Old Testament, a Christian instructs in church history and a Presbyterian lectures in theology, and so on. Typical sectarian fears of the outsider are not found among Moonies; truth is one or at least must become one, and understanding can be delivered even by the uninitiated."
- Where have all the Moonies gone? K. Gordon Neufeld, First Things, March 2008, "While I was studying theology, church history, and the Bible—taught by an eclectic faculty that included a rabbi, a Jesuit priest, and a Methodist minister—most of my young coreligionists were standing on street corners in San Francisco, Boston, and Miami urging strangers to attend a vaguely described dinner."
- Helm, S. Divine Principle and the Second Advent Archived 2008-09-21 at the Wayback Machine. Christian Century May 11, 1977 "In fact Moon's adherents differ from previous fringe groups in their quite early and expensive pursuit of respectability, as evidenced by the scientific conventions they have sponsored in England and the U.S. and the seminary they have established in Barrytown, New York, whose faculty is composed not of their own group members but rather of respected Christian scholars."
- Patrick Hickey Tahoe Boy: A journey back home John, Maryland, Seven Locks Press (May 15, 2009) ISBN 0-9822293-6-4 ISBN 978-0-9822293-6-1 pages 163-168
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“The existing Cheon Seong Gyeong had some misquoted and duplicated parts, which True Mother was sad to see.” The new edition corrected this and added speeches of True Father and True Mother from the 2000s.
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- Korean Moon: Waxing of Waning?, Leo Sandon Jr., Theology Today, Vol 35, No 2, July 1978, "The movement's official doctrinal statement, and a part of the revelation, is the Divine Principle. Both an oral tradition and a written one and published in several versions, Divine Principle is the Completed Testament. The Rev. Moon claims to have come not to destroy or abrogate the Old and New Testaments, but to fulfill them-to "complete" them. To his Moonist followers, the Rev. Moon is primarily "true father," probably the Messiah, and only secondarily a theologian. In an effort to systematize Moon's teachings, several members of the Unification Church in Korea have put together a developing theological system in Divine Principle which is impressive in its imaginative nature, coherence, and consistency, if not in its Christian orthodoxy. As the most complete expression of Moonist teachings to date, Divine Principle is the basic text of the Unification Church.4 The two major divisions of the system are the doctrines of Creation and Restoration. There are many subsets to these major divisions, but Creation and Restoration are the foci for the Moonist theological system."
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- Unifying or Dividing? Sun Myung Moon and the Origins of the Unification Church George D. Chryssides, University of Wolverhampton, UK 2003
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- "Religion: Sun Myung Moon's Goodwill Blitz". Time magazine. April 22, 1985.
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- Anti-cult movements in cross-cultural perspective, Anson D. Shupe, David G. Bromley, 1994, p42
- Sun Myung Moon forms new political party to merge divided Koreas, Church & State, May 01, 2003.
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- "Religion: Sun Myung Moon's Goodwill Blitz". Time Magazine. April 22, 1985.
- To Bigotry, No Sanction, Mose Durst, 1984
- Exposition of the Divine Principle 1996 Translation Chapter 3 Eschatology and Human History, accessed September 3, 2010
- From the Unification Church to the Unification Movement, 1994–1999: Five Years of Dramatic Changes Massimo Introvigne, Center for Studies on New Religions "The ceremony in Washington, D.C., included six "co-officiators" from other faiths, including controversial minister Louis Farrakhan from the Nation of Islam. The Blessing ceremony in Seoul on February 7, 1999 also featured seven co-officiators including Orthodox Rabbi Virgil Kranz (Chairman of the American Jewish Assembly), controversial Catholic Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo and the General Superintendent of the Church of God in Christ (a large African American Pentecostal denomination), Rev. T.L. Barrett."
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- Evangelical-Unification Dialogue (Conference series – Unification Theological Seminary; no. 3) Richard Quebedeaux, Rodney Sawatsky, Paragon House, 1979, ISBN 093289402X, pages 77-99.
- Frederick Sontag,1977, Sun Myung Moon and the Unification Church, Abingdon Press, ISBN 0687406226, page 185.
- Irving Louis Horowitz, 1978, Science, Sin, and Scholarship: The Politics of Reverend Moon and the Unification Church, MIT Press, ISBN 0262081008, page 114
- The A to Z of New Religious Movements, George D. Chryssides Scarecrow Press, 2006, page 155
- Tingle, D. and Fordyce, R. 1979, The Phases and Faces of the Moon: A Critical Examination of the Unification Church and Its Principles, Hicksville, New York: Exposition Press ISBN 0682492647, p20-21
- George D. Chryssides, "Unificationism: A study in religious syncretism", Chapter 14 in Religion: empirical studies, Editor: Steven Sutcliffe, Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2004, ISBN 0-7546-4158-9, ISBN 978-0-7546-4158-2, page 232.
- Unification Church of America History by Lloyd Pumphrey
- "Resurrection". Unification.net. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
- Divine Principle states as follows: "All these [saints of the Old Testament Age], though well attested by their faith, did not receive what was promised [permission to enter the Kingdom of Heaven], since God had foreseen something better [the Kingdom of Heaven] for us [earthly people], that apart from us they [spirits] should not be made perfect [citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven]. (Hebrews 11:39-40)" "The Returning Resurrection of the Spirits of Israelites and Christians", Chapter 5: Resurrection, Exposition of the Divine Principle, HSA-UWC, 1996 (ISBN 0-910621-80-2).
- Young Oon Kim, Divine Principle and its application, 1980, The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity
- Daske, D. and Ashcraft, W. 2005, New Religious Movements, New York: New York University Press, ISBN 0-8147-0702-5 "To restart the process toward perfection, God has sent messiahs to earth who could restore the true state of humanity's relationship with God. Before that can happen, however, humans must perform good deeds that cancel the bad effects of sin. Unificationists call this "indemnity". Showing love and devotion to one's fellow humans, especially within families, helps pay this indemnity." p. 142.
- Yamamoto, J. 1995, Unification Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Press, ISBN 0-310-70381-6 "The doctrine of indemnity. Indemnity is that which people do to restore themselves to God's kingdom. Young Oon Kim describes it this way: 'We atone for our sins through specific acts of penance.' Kwang-Yol Yoo, a Unification teacher, even goes so far as to say that by following the Divine Principle, "man's perfection must be accomplished by his own effort without God's help." God does most of the work, but people must still do their part in order to achieve God's plan of salvation: 'Five percent is only to say that man's responsibility is extremely small compared to God's.' "p35 "The doctrine of indemnity is not biblical. 'In simple language.' states Ruth Tucker, 'indemnity is salvation by works.' Bob Larson makes a distinction between Moon's doctrine and biblical theology, saying, 'Moon's doctrine of sinless perfection by "indemnity [forgiveness of sin by works on Moon's behalf], which can apply even to deceased ancestors, is a denial of the salvation by grace offering through Jesus Christ.' 'Farewell,' said John Calvin. 'to the dream of those who think up a righteousness flowing together out of faith and works.'" p40
- THE POWER OF THE PRINCIPLE: WHENCE IT CAME; WHERE IT WENT Richard Quebedeaux, "Rev. Moon calls such a mode of living, such a lifestyle, "restoration through indemnity." With indemnity viewed as a persistent pattern of behavior, not as a mere doctrine to be affirmed or a rational list of rules, God's ideal for human relationships is "restored" through restitution. Restitution-in the sense of a "natural law"-assuages resentment, because it is the means by which the powerful and enfranchised give the people who feel downtrodden and powerless what they believe is rightly theirs. Indemnity means that 'I'm here for you.'"
- Exposition of the Divine Principle 1996 Translation
- Exposition of the Divine Principle
- Daske and Ashcraft
- Daske, D. and Ashcraft, W. 2005, New Religious Movements, New York: New York University Press, ISBN 0814707025 p142.
- Tingle, D. and Fordyce, R. 1979, The Phases and Faces of the Moon: A Critical Examination of the Unification Church and Its Principles, Hicksville, New York: Exposition Press p53-55
- Helm, S. Divine Principle and the Second Advent Archived 2008-09-21 at the Wayback Machine. Christian Century May 11, 1977 "Thus, while the two world wars may appear from a human point of view to have been evil, from the point of view of God's plan for restoration they were good and necessary. The defeat of the "satanic side" in each case cleared the path for a more nearly complete foundation for the Kingdom of God. These two cataclysmic conflagrations of our century, which broke the back of the liberal Protestant faith in progress, do not appear to trouble the adherents of Divine Principle, by and large members of a generation conveniently undistressed by stark memories of those 'triumphs" for the heavenly side. This sanguine schematization of the Holocaust has not, understandably, reassured Jewish critics of the movement. There remains, of course, one final conflict, the resolution of which will provide the worldwide unity upon which the last four-position foundation can be perfected. This is the struggle between "Abeltype" democracy and "Cain-type" communism. Divine Principle is indecisive at this point. It may not be necessary for democracy to destroy communism (the sole bearer, in its view, of a "materialistic" philosophy) by force. It may be accomplished in a battle of ideology. The Unification Church seeks to forge the necessary ideology while at the same time supporting a militarily supreme West, just in case. This final conflict is imminent, for the Lord of the Second Advent has appeared in Sun Myung Moon, and the atheistic communist system is the "Antichrist" of the final days."
- Do As I Preach, and Not As I Do, TIME, Asian Edition, September 28, 1998, Vol. 152, NO. 12.
- "1,000 Cheer Rev. Moon in Oakland: Unification Church leader at end of national crusade," by Peter Fimrite, San Francisco Chronicle, Wednesday, September 20, 1995.
- Moon At Twilight: Amid scandal, the Unification Church has a strange new mission, Peter Maass New Yorker Magazine, September 14, 1998. "Moon sees the essence of his own mission as completing the one given to Jesus – establishing a 'true family' untouched by Satan while teaching all people to lead a God-centered life under his spiritual leadership."
- Unifying or Dividing? Sun Myung Moon and the Origins of the Unification Church, by George D. Chryssides, University of Wolverhampton, UK. A paper presented at the CESNUR 2003 Conference, Vilnius, Lithuania.
- "Sharpton in Ceremonies Of Unification Church," by David Firestone, The New York Times, Friday, September 12, 1997.
- "Messiah" by John Dart, Los Angeles Times, Jan 29, 1976; B1.
- "Stymied in U.S., Moon's Church Sounds a Retreat" by Marc Fisher and Jeff Leen, Washington Post, Monday, November 24, 1997; Page A01.
- "Church's Pistol Firm Exploits a Niche" by John Mintz, Washington Post, Wednesday, March 10, 1999; Page A1. "Justin Moon and his siblings are revered by UC members as the Messiah's 'True Children'."
- "Moon stresses importance of family," by Tom Heinen, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, April 5, 2001.
- "REVEREND RULES: A Moonstruck Heaven Taps Favorite Son," by Peggy Fletcher Stack, The Salt Lake Tribune, July 12, 2002; page A1.
- "UNIFICATION CHURCH:".
- "The Reason The Messiah Is Necessary", by Sun Myung Moon, in Blessing and Ideal Family, (2000), Family Federation for World Peace and Unification ISBN 0-910621-67-5
- "The Messiah: His Advent and the Purpose of His Second Coming," Exposition of the Divine Principle (1996), Family Federation for World Peace and Unification.
- Family Pledge Is the Bone Thought of the Unification Church – Rev. Sun Myung Moon – July, 2002
- Significance of the Family Pledge – public speech by Rev. Moon – June 13, 2007
- Duddy, Neil Interview: Dr. Mose Durst Archived 2007-09-28 at the Wayback Machine.
- The men and women entered a large room, where Moon began matching couples by pointing at them."NY Daily News "In the Unification tradition, romantic liaisons are forbidden until the members are deemed by Mr. Moon to be spiritually ready to be matched at a huge gathering where he points future spouses out to one another. His followers believe that his decisions are based on his ability to discern their suitability and see their future descendants. Many are matched with people of other races and nationalities, in keeping with Mr. Moon's ideal of unifying all races and nations in the Unification Church. Though some couples are matched immediately before the mass wedding ceremonies, which are held every two or three years, most have long engagements during which they are typically posted in different cities or even continents, and get to know one another through letters."NY Times "Many were personally matched by Moon, who taught that romantic love led to sexual promiscuity, mismatched couples and dysfunctional societies. Moon's preference for cross-cultural marriages also meant that couples often shared no common language."Manchester Guardian "Moon's death Sept. 2 and funeral Saturday signaled the end of the random pairings that helped make Moon's Unification Church famous — and infamous — a generation ago." Washington Post "Many of the couples who married at mass weddings were hand-picked by Moon from photos. It led to some strange pairs such as a 71-year-old African Catholic archbishop who wed a 43-year-old Korean acupuncturist. In 1988 Moon entered the Guinness Book of Records when he married 6,516 identically dressed couples at Seoul's Olympic Stadium. Moonie newly-weds were forbidden to sleep together for 40 days to prove their marriage was on a higher plane. They then had to consummate their marriage in a three-day ritual with the sexual positions stipulated by their leader."Daily Mirror
- "Thousands marry in first Moonie wedding since founder's death". Independent. 17 February 2013. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
- Palmer, Mark (6 September 2012). "I got married in a Moonie mass wedding: He was a public schoolboy from a wealthy family. So what made Mark Palmer spend seven years as a disciple of the cult?". Daily Mail. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
- Henneberger, Melinda (22 December 1992). "A Look at Life After Mass Marriage; For 2,075 Couples (Give or Take 200), 10 Years Together, Thanks to Sun Myung Moon". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
- "NEW YORK DAY BY DAY; Wedding Day for 4,000". The New York Times. July 1, 1982.
- Marriage by the numbers; Moon presides as 6,500 couples wed in S. Korea Archived 2008-10-08 at the Wayback Machine. Peter Maass Washington Post October 31, 1988
- Bak Byeong Ryong Unification Church believers around the world three manyeossang joint wedding, MBCNews, 25 August 1992
- "'D' Is For Danger – And For Writer Don Delillo". Chicago Tribune. May 22, 1992.
- Brady, Tara (February 17, 2013). "We're going to need a bigger cake... 3,500 Moonies marry in first mass wedding since the death of 'messiah' Sun Myung Moon". Daily Mail. London. Retrieved 19 February 2013.
- Selig, William, 2012, The Seunghwa Ministry of the Unification Church, Unification Theological Seminary
- Kwak Chung-wan, 1985, The Tradition, Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity (Unification Church), Chapter 23
- Kim Young-oon, 1980, Unification Theology, Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity
- Jones, Mark, Moonies burial site to go ahead, August 2, 2010, BBC
- "In 1955, Reverend Moon established the Collegiate Association for the Research of the Principle (CARP). CARP is now active on many campuses in the United States and has expanded to over eighty nations. This association of students promotes intercultural, interracial, and international cooperation through the Unification world view." 
- Storey, John Woodrow; Glenn H. Utter (2002). Religion and Politics. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO. p. 99. ISBN 1-57607-218-5.
- Yamamoto, J.; Alan W Gomes (1995). Unification Church. Grand Rapids: Zondervan. p. 19. ISBN 0-310-70381-6.
- Sewell, Rhonda B. (February 28, 2003). "Korean Culture Takes the Stage". The Blade. p. D11.
The colors, sounds, and heritage of South Korea will come alive tonight as the Little Angels, an all-girls Korean folk ballet company, performs in the Ritz Theatre in Tiffin. ... The company was founded in 1962 by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon and his wife, Hak Ja Han, as a way to project a positive image of the country...
- Moon, Sun Myung (2009). As a Peace-Loving Global Citizen. Gimm-Young Publishers. ISBN 0-7166-0299-7. page 67. "My plan was to have these seventeen children learn how to dance and then send them out into the world. Many foreigners knew about Korea only as a poor country that had fought a terrible war. I wanted to show them the beautiful dances of Korea so that they would realize that the Korean people are a people of culture."
- Dunning, Jennifer (December 29, 1973). "Dance: The Little Angels; Korean Folk Ballet Presents 31 Children in Intricate Routines and Songs". The New York Times. p. 53.
- Dunning, Jennifer (February 1, 1993). "Dance in Review". The New York Times.
- Kim, Hyung-eun (April 12, 2010). "Business engine of a global faith". Joong Ang Daily.
- Yamamoto, J. I., 1995, Unification Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House ISBN 0-310-70381-6 (Excerpt: Archived 2012-02-10 at the Wayback Machine.)
"1. The Unification Theological Seminary
- a. The Unification Church has a seminary in Barrytown, New York called The Unification Theological Seminary.
- b. It is used as a theological training center, where members are prepared to be leaders and theologians in the UC.
- c. Since many people regard Moon as a cult leader, there is a false impression that this seminary is academically weak.
- d. Moon's seminary, however, has not only attracted a respectable faculty (many of whom are not members of the UC), but it also has graduated many students (who are members of the UC) who have been accepted into doctoral programs at institutions such as Harvard and Yale."
- Divine Principle and the Second Advent Archived 2008-09-21 at the Wayback Machine. Christian Century May 11, 1977 "In fact Moon's adherents differ from previous fringe groups in their quite early and expensive pursuit of respectability, as evidenced by the scientific conventions they have sponsored in England and the U.S. and the seminary they have established in Barrytown, New York, whose faculty is composed not of their own group members but rather of respected Christian scholars."
- "Who Owns What: News World Communications". The Columbia Journalism Review. 2003-11-24. Retrieved 2008-02-02.
- http://www.washingtontimes.com, The Washington Times. "Rev. Sun Myung Moon passes the torch". The Washingtion Times. Retrieved 2016-02-15.
- Sims, Calvin (August 11, 1997). "A Newspaper for Half a Hemisphere?". The New York Times.
- Yahoo! Finance profile
- Shapira, Ian (November 3, 2010). "Moon group buys back Washington Times". Washington Post. p. C1.
- Ribadeneira, Diego (August 21, 1999). "Ire at school Star of David ruling unites ACLU, Pat Robertson". The Boston Globe. The New York Times Company. p. B2.
- Dorsey, Gary (August 26, 1999). "Unification Church group sues state over task force; Investigation of cults called unconstitutional". The Baltimore Sun. p. 2B.
- Argetsinger, Amy (October 14, 1999). "Task Force Finds Few Instances of Campus Cults". The Washington Post. The Washington Post Company. p. M4.
- Moon Church Founds Ballet School New York Times, 1990-09-08
- Universal Ballet
- Interview with Julia Moon exploredance.com
- Inside and Outside the Korean Dance Scene
- Staff (June 19, 1993). "Moon's wife to speak in Lawrence". The Kansas City Star. The Kansas City Star Co. p. E10.
- Cuda, Amanda (December 28, 2004). "Event works for understanding through friendships". Connecticut Post. p. Section: Womanwise.
- Peterson, Thair (March 21, 1998). "Bridging the Interracial Gap". Long Beach Press-Telegram. p. A3.
- Proposal for a Joint Mission to North Korea, Tehran Times, 2017-11-6
- Kirk, Don (February 16, 2000). "Church Reaches Across Border in Korea Car Venture: Moon's Northward Push". The New York Times.
- Kirk, Don (May 2, 1998). "Reverend Moon's Group Wants to Talk Investment: Seoul Nods At Church's Foray North". New York Times.
- Dubai Tycoon Scouts Pyongyang Forbes, September 9, 2006
- Luft, Kerry (December 8, 1994). "Unification Church Invests Heavily In Uruguay". Chicago Tribune.
- Ghouse, Mike (21 February 2012). "Commitment to Israel-Palestine, Part 2". Huffington Post.
- Prince Harry's visit to Guyana children's home founded by Moonies sect defended, Daily Mail, 2016-12-4
- Warming Up for the Kick-off, Wall Street Journal, August 2, 2010
- "Jerez se convierte hoy en una de las sedes oficiales de la 'Peace Cup 2009'" (in Spanish). AndaluciaPress. Archived from the original on April 22, 2009. Retrieved 2008-06-14.
- "Peace Cup might go to Spain". The Washington Times. Retrieved 2008-06-14.
- "Soccer World News//World Roundup". CNN.
- Rosenthal, Elisabeth (2000-09-12). "Group Founded by Sun Myung Moon Preaches Sexual Abstinence in China". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-02-22.
- "Glenallen resident returns from Thailand after helping victims of human trafficking". 7 May 2012.
- Mo. woman helps victims of human trafficking
- Gruzen, Tara (February 13, 1996). "College Group Preaches A Lesson On Pure Love At Anti-porn Protest". Chicago Tribune.
- Sontag, Frederick. 1977. Sun Myung Moon and the Unification Church, Abingdon Press. ISBN 0-687-40622-6
- Bryant, M. Darrol, and Herbert Warren Richardson. 1978. A Time for consideration: a scholarly appraisal of the Unification Church. New York: E. Mellen Press. ISBN 978-0-88946-954-9
- Tingle, D. and Fordyce, R. 1979, Phases and Faces of the Moon: A Critical Examination of the Unification Church and its Principles, Hicksville, NY: Exposition Press ISBN 0-682-49264-7
- Kim, Young Oon, 1980, Unification Theology, Barrytown, NY: Unification Theological Seminary, Library of Congress Cataloging number 80-52872
- Matczak, Sebastian, Unificationism: A New Philosophy and World View (Philosophical Questions Series, No 11) (1982) New York: Louvain.
- Barker, Eileen, The Making of a Moonie: Choice or Brainwashing? (1984) Blackwell's, Oxford, UK ISBN 0-631-13246-5.
- Bjornstad, James. 1984. Sun Myung & the Unification Church. Rev. ed. Minneapolis, Minn.: Bethany House Publishers. 57 p. N.B.: Rev. ed. of The Moon Is Not the Sun, which had been published in 1976. ISBN 0-87123-301-0
- Durst, Mose. 1984. To bigotry, no sanction: Reverend Sun Myung Moon and the Unification Church. Chicago: Regnery Gateway. ISBN 978-0-89526-609-5
- Bromley, David G. (September 1985). "Financing the Millennium: The Economic Structure of the Unificationist Movement". Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Vol. 24, No. 3 (Sep., 1985), pp. Blackwell Publishing on behalf of Society for the Scientific Study of Religion. 24 (3): 253–274. JSTOR 1385816.
- Fichter, Joseph Henry. 1985. The holy family of father Moon. Kansas City, Mo: Leaven Press. ISBN 978-0-934134-13-2
- Gullery, Jonathan. 1986. The Path of a pioneer: the early days of Reverend Sun Myung Moon and the Unification Church. New York: HSA Publications. ISBN 978-0-910621-50-2
- Biermans, J. 1986, The Odyssey of New Religious Movements, Persecution, Struggle, Legitimation: A Case Study of the Unification Church Lewiston, New York and Queenston, Ontario: The Edwin Melton Press ISBN 0-88946-710-2
- Sherwood, Carlton. 1991. Inquisition: The Persecution and Prosecution of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. Washington, D.C.: Regnery Gateway. ISBN 978-0-89526-532-6
- Chryssides, George D., The Advent of Sun Myung Moon: The Origins, Beliefs and Practices of the Unification Church (1991) London, Macmillan Professional and Academic Ltd. The author is professor of religious studies at the University of Wolverhampton, United Kingdom.
- Yamamoto, J. Isamu, 1995, Unification Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan ISBN 0-310-70381-6
- Hong, Nansook, In the Shadow of the Moons: My Life in the Reverend Sun Myung Moon's Family. Little Brown & Company; ISBN 0-316-34816-3; (August 1998).
- Introvigne, M., 2000, The Unification Church, Signature Books, ISBN 1-56085-145-7
- Ward, Thomas J. 2006, March to Moscow: the role of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon in the collapse of communism. St. Paul, Minn: Paragon House. ISBN 978-1-885118-16-5
- Hickey, Patrick 2009, Tahoe Boy: A journey back home. John, Maryland: Seven Locks Press. ISBN 0-9822293-6-4 ISBN 978-0982229361
- Moon, Sun Myung, 2009, As a Peace-Loving Global Citizen. Gimm-Young Publishers ISBN 0-7166-0299-7
|Wikisource has several original texts related to: Unification Church|
- Quotations related to Unification Church at Wikiquote
- Quotations related to Divine Principle at Wikiquote
- Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (official international website, English language version)
- Family Federation for World Peace and Unification USA (official website)
- Biography of Sun Myung Moon
- Unification Church Profile of the UC at religionfacts.com.