Young Adult Winter Workshops and Special Membership Education
with Dr Frank Kaufmann in Melbourne & Sydney
Dr Frank Kaufmann recently visited Australia on special invitation by some Australian blessed families with the support of National Leader. He spent a couple of weeks here to give educational talks to youth and blessed couples, as well as Ambassadors for Peace. After completing the educational tour in Melbourne from 31 July to 4 August, Dr Kaufmann spent four days with the Sydney community from 8th August until 11th August.
Saturday, 8 August, was a day dedicated to the Sydney youth, specifically those in the 18+ age bracket. The program started with a welcoming by Rev Soon Teck Lim at 9:30am, followed by an introduction to the main speaker by Enrique Ledesma, who has known Dr Kaufmann for more than 40 years. Then William & Cally Saver took over as MCs and the room was left to the 20 youth and Dr Kaufmann.
The first lecture was an introductory talk in which Dr Kaufmann shared about his plan for the day. He then talked about the dynamics of the Unification faith and the difference between the first and the second generation. There was a 30-minute tea break with snacks provided by Klaus and Sandy Hartmann, and that was followed by the next talk, which turned into a round of introductions. Everyone in the room shared what they’re doing in life, such as work or study. The idea of networking with each other was strongly emphasized. Finally Dr Kaufmann gave another presentation, entitled “The very most basic build regarding our life,” which was about the basic element that separates human beings from the rest of creation, and that is freedom and responsibility. Choices that people make in life allow them to be co-creators of their own lives.
At 1:15pm everyone went upstairs for a delicious lunch of Subway sandwiches and sushi, which had also been provided by the Hartmann family. There was an hour-long break for lunch, after which the workshop resumed in the Board Room. Dr Kaufmann spoke further on the topic of freedom and responsibility before asking the participants to get into groups of five and discuss the different opinions they heard related to the purpose of life. The answers were shared with everyone and Dr Kaufmann ended with the conclusion that the ultimate goal is to become an absolute object of God.
There was one final talk on purity and lineage, and during the final hour Dr Kaufmann addressed a couple of the questions that the youth had put in the Q&A box throughout the day. The workshop ended at 5:30pm and some people lingered to talk individually with Dr Kaufmann.
The Sunday service on 9 August was well-attended; a number of interstate visitors from Melbourne, Canberra and Brisbane came to Sydney especially for the occasion. Dr Kaufmann gave a sermon concerning the nature of a sermon and what is to be learned from other Christian churches. Dr Kaufmann expressed the importance of worship sermons in one’s life and their function as a means of conveying transformational faith in communities. He spoke of his personal experiences with Father in Belvedere and how much Father valued the continuation of outside church attendance after his own morning services. After the sermon and usual church service was concluded, there was a second talk at 11am. Dr Kaufmann reminded everyone of the significance of continuing to serve other Christian churches. He relayed his own personal account of serving an Anglican church and his experiences within that community. The talk was followed by a few questions from members in the audience.
More time was given to the second gen on Sunday afternoon, during which Dr Kaufmann talked for an hour about three final points he wanted to share: the importance of purity, concerning the providence and where second gen fit in and the idea that to understand the principle we need to experience it. The rest of the afternoon was devoted to answering the many questions that people had put into the Q&A box the day before. It was a very beneficial time and the youth felt free to address all kinds of issues they were dealing with in relation to the church.
On Monday evening there was a similar program for the older members of the church. More than 40 blessed members joined from 7pm to ask Dr Kaufmann about a variety of concerns, including issues related to True Parents and the True Family. It ran for more than two and a half hours, and at the end there was a big round of applause and a group photo with Dr Kaufmann.
On Tuesday, the final day, Dr Kaufmann was the main speaker for the UPF bi-monthly meeting held at the Oceania Peace Embassy. The topic of his lecture was “The Role of Religion in Peacebuilding,” which stressed the necessity of religious collaboration in today’s society. Dr Kaufmann highlighted the effects of globalization and how closed religions can no longer function in this world without the cooperation and acceptance of other religions and faiths. He expressed that love and compassion for other theologies must be the driving force for a peaceful interreligious society to expand and flourish. More than 60 people attended the UPF event and two youth participants received Ambassador for Peace certificates. Dr Kaufmann also received gifts of appreciation from the Sydney community and the youth. This event successfully concluded the time that Dr Kaufmann had spent in Sydney.