Lightning Flashes from East to West on Unificationist Websites
April 04 2013
As Unificationists gear up for sending missionaries to 20 countries identified by the 20/20 Project, some observers are seeking more information about what churches overseas are doing, and for them, Unificationist-supported websites can be key resources. The Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) has missionaries across the world. The first FFWPU missionaries from Korea went to Japan in 1958, traveled to the United States in 1959, and now 64 years later, FFWPU has expanded around the world. According to a FFWPU International memo, 194 nations participated in the Church’s Foundation Day event through the internet.
The International headquarters in South Korea lists the sites below as formal, functioning church sources of information, although many unofficial sites are spreading the breaking news of the movement, too.
The common feature of most sites is that they include an explanation of the founder, Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the seminal teaching, and the nation’s local news. Some explain the FFWPU’s history. [Helpful hint: A useful tool for getting translation of web content is to use the Google Chrome browser, which offers a translation service.]
The International headquarters web site, Tongilgyo.org, has some sections available in English and Japanese. Of all the official FFWPU websites available online, Tongilgyo.org offers the most content. It has six categories, including Founder, News, Introduction of Unification Church, Video, Join and Online mall. The Founder category sub-divides to three sections - True Parents’ life history, speeches and news. The News category divides to four sections – church news, media coverage, notice and monthly schedule. The Introduction to the Unification Church divides to seven sections – vision, symbol, history, theology, blessing, contact and related sites. The Video category divides to six sections- news, True Family, Divine Principle, worship and sermons, project videos and educational lectures. The Join category has a message board for member announcements. Online mall photos of souvenirs to purchase, including caps, tie pins, True Parents’ official pictures, and Hoon Dok Hwe materials.
The Japan headquarters’ website, www.ucjp.org, is entirely in Japanese. The unique aspects of this website is that it includes a counseling menu for FFWPU-Japan members. The homepage also contains a section that explains FFWPU’s stance on spiritual and blessed family life. The Japanese headquarters’ website is divided to eight categories, including “home,” “Unification church,” “life and spirit world,” “marriage and family,” “activities,” “join the church, “link” and “members” page. Home category is a front page of their website and provides headlines, notices and announcements. Unification church category has four sections – first visitors, the doctrine of the Unification church, Founder, history and greetings from the president of Japan’s FFWPU. Life and the spirit world has four sections – purpose of life, life of faith, about death, life after death spirit world and liberating ancestors. The Marriage and family category has five sections – blessing, birth, children’ education, a history of the blessing and an introduction to the blessing. The Activities category has six sections - volunteer activities of the Unification church, cultural activities, seminars and training, Family Festival, student activities and overseas church activities. Join the church category has four sections – contact, members’ voices, Find your nearest Unification Church and Q&A. Link category has links to official church-related websites. Members’ page category is divided to nine sections – Cheon Bok Gung contents, church-related archives, a monthly schedule, of workshop information, earthquake information, protests, about opponents, media and comprehensive counseling.
Overview of FFWPU Sites
The following are the confirmed FFWUP world wide websites:
Korea/ International tongilgyo.org
Costa Rica famipaz.org
United Kingdom um-uk.org
The Netherlands www.fwu.nl
The following websites have not been confirmed as official FFWPU websites.
Ireland unification.ie/FFWPU.htm English
The Thailand headquarter website is in Thai language only.
The Costa Rican headquarter website is in Spanish, English, Korean and Japanese. Weekly video sermons are available on the website.
Russia’s website, xn--90abhbcbubl9abeby2g7c5a8d.xn--p1ai, is entirely in Russian. However, there are modern features on its homepage. It has brief explanations about FFWPU’s beliefs and its seminal teaching, the Divine Principle. It also includes local news and news from the International Korean church.
Germany’s website, www.tongilgyo.de, is in German. FFWPU-Germany includes in-depth explanation of FFWPU theology by explaining FFWPU’s view on the death of Jesus, spiritual life, sexual ethics and the value of family.
The United Kingdom’s website, um-uk.org, is in English. Most of the posts feature local news. There are links to the College Association for Research Principle (CARP) and the High-school Association for Research Principle (HARP), which is FFWPU-UK’s youth ministry.
Uruguay’s website, ffpum.org.uy, is in Spanish. There are weekly service announcements, and audio files posted, but the site has not been updated since May. 2012.
by Lymhwa Kim and edited by Krista Karjalainen and Doug Burton in New York.