Commemorative Speech by HWPL Chairman
Today marks the 9th anniversary of HWPL’s Declaration of World Peace. A warm greeting to the family of peace around the world. Do you remember the commemoration held in front of the Peace Gate in Korea nine years ago? I have been calling for peace and the cessation of wars, making trips around the globe 31 times and spoke to world leaders, supreme justices, chairs of national assemblies, and religious leaders. This was the day the Declaration of World Peace was proclaimed by HWPL for the first time. I am sure you all remember. It was May 25. Today is May 25. It was today nine years ago.
Then, how far has HWPL’s message of freedom and peace reached throughout the world? Has this ever crossed your mind? With a mission of building a lasting legacy of peace and cessation of wars for future generations, I have traveled around the globe 31 times and met with heads of state, supreme justices, speakers of parliaments, and religious leaders. Why did I do so? It was to bring freedom and peace together. And once I met the leaders and promised to work together for peace, what was next? We hosted the HWPL World Peace Summit. The HWPL World Peace Summit was hosted in Seoul, Korea.
What was the outcome of that conference? Political leaders pledged to work toward international law for peace; Religious leaders pledged to bring religious harmony within God; And leaders of civil societies pledged to urge for such efforts. That day, we pledged before God and before the people of the world. I am sure you remember. It was a promise to realize peace and the cessation of wars and to leave a legacy of freedom and peace for generations to come as you would remember.
But, then, there was one problem. The United Nations was formed for peace, to my knowledge. In the UN, there are five standing members at the UN Security Council. The five member states are supposed to keep watch and prevent wars. However, one state out of those five members, Russia, recently invaded Ukraine and started a war.
This is precisely why the peace family of HWPL had called for an international legal instrument for peace. Keeping the status quo would still pose a risk of wars, so we have asked for international legal measures. To this end, we convened recognized international law experts, the HWPL International Law Peace Committee, and drafted ten articles and 38 clauses of the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War. The contents were announced to the world. The next step is to submit the DPCW to the UN for a vote to adopt it. Once put to the vote, all the peace family will say it must be incorporated into law.
On one UN Day, I was at the UN Headquarters and was given a chance to speak to a large group regarding international law and the DPCW. The audience responded with a standing ovation. It gives me confidence that the ten articles and 38 clauses of the DPCW will be adopted as an international legal instrument for peace. Why is this necessary? For peace and cessation of war and to give freedom and peace to future generations, isn’t it? Ladies and Gentlemen, If we call ourselves a member of this global society, no matter who we are, we must become messengers of peace.
This has been our message. I have seen your hard work and dedication to peace. I know very well how hard you’ve worked. What we do is witnessed by the heavens and the earth. Korea historically experienced invasion, and its people suffered greatly under oppression for a long time. Then, the nation was liberated. With the independence, the Korean people hoped the nation would finally have freedom and peace. However, the country was once again cut through the middle by decisions made at the Potsdam Conference in Germany. There were people who decided on that divide. What could be greater despair? Hands clasped, gazing up as we pleaded to the divine, “The hills and rivers cried with us. The stars cried with us.” We had thought our nation had won its liberty, but, rather, it was cut in half. Then the Southern half was stricken by the North. Can you imagine how many young lives were lost? What is true peace, and what is liberty?
Ladies and Gentlemen, Members of the Family of Peace, Isn’t it to have no more wars in our world that we are doing the work of peace? If so, for the sake of our conscience, we must not seek violent aggression ever again. As people born into one world, why should we kill one another? On one anniversary, we held this commemoration at the UN Cemetery. The men and women who lie there were soldiers who fell fighting next to me at the frontlines during the Korean War, and HWPL went there to commemorate the Declaration of World Peace.
People from countries that share a similar history with mine would be able to relate to the story. The sorrow from the loss of your country, the grief of having your country divided. How heartbreaking it is! Will we let this happen again? Nationalities, ethnicities, and religions did not matter. With a goal set to achieve peace and cessation of wars and building a lasting legacy, I have traveled around the world 31 times. None of it was for personal gain or out of self-interest. It was solely for peace, to establish peace.
Currently, we are in the middle of the COVID-19 situation, and people in respective countries are struggling. In these times, we must keep ourselves safe and hope for the best. I pray to God. This is what I pray: “God, God, please save us. Make the coronavirus recede from the global community. This world is your creation, Father God. As you love this world, please let COVID go away.” This is how I pray to God.
And, as for us, we made a promise to God and the global citizens, pledging peace activities and the cessation of war. We must keep our promise, ladies and gentlemen. Please be the ones to call for peace in your respective countries. And one day, we would have fulfilled our promises. Don’t you agree? Think about it. There are young lives born into our world every day. For those babies, for the future of those young children, should we give death? We should give them life. We should give them hope, shouldn’t we? Shouldn’t we give them freedom and peace?
In this regard, I invite the family of peace to write to the president of Russia. Let’s write letters to stop the war immediately and explain there must be no more killing. No matter how many letters it takes to deliver the message, we must keep writing to the Russian president. The current situation cannot go on. Also, let us keep our work to submit the DPCW to the UN and have it implemented as international law. Furthermore, change is needed for the five standing members of the UN Security Council because those five member states were the ones that had a stake in instigating aggression as you all know. Why make false promises? Once you make a promise, you must keep your word.
Dear family of peace, let us stay unchanged. No matter how far apart, we are one family. Under the banner of peace and freedom, with this shared cause, we are together. As we call for and strive for this cause, heaven and earth are watching us, and God is listening. We have no power. It is God who has power. I believe that God will give help for our collective efforts. And I am sure I speak for all of us when I say this. Yes, it is true.
Now, the Declaration of World Peace of May 25 must carry on without stopping. Until the day it is fulfilled, let us garner our minds and hearts. Let us invite many more to join the cause of peace, to become a family of peace. Let us keep campaigning. During the World Peace Tour, I spoke many times on broadcasting channels. At broadcasting stations, I also made journalists and media staff HWPL’s peace family and appointed them as publicity ambassadors. They will remember when they hear this message. Just as they promised to cover peace continuously in their productions, we must keep calling for peace until we complete our task of establishing global peace.
We are a family of peace. We are a family of God. Wouldn’t God come and dwell when the world becomes a world of peace? A world of fighting and killing will not be ready for God to come. And when God does come, He will bless us since He is the source of all blessings. Let us keep this in mind. I have personally read and studied many prophecies of ancient prophets. It’s true. I read the poem of Tagore from India, and I also read the prophecy by a prophet called Nam Sa Go from Korea. Prophets said the world to come is a good place without death or tears. Will it happen on its own? No, we must make it happen. It is on us. We must create a good place. Then will God come. And when God comes and dwells with us, everything will be good. So, we must prepare for God to come and build a world of peace.
Throughout my 31 rounds of the peace tour, I have met many of you, and all of you I have met, I keep close to my heart. You are close to my heart. The fact that we are a family of peace and the freedom we want—these never leave my thoughts, and you are always in my prayers. I ask that you also pray for me so that God can hear your prayers. And let us remember. With our bond as one family, let us remember. I believe we all know the cause that we work for.
Once the pandemic eases, I shall resume the World Peace Tour, and we may meet again. So, let’s also pray for the end of COVID-19. Everyone, let’s be well and alive and let us stop the fight. We are one, not two. We are a family of peace made in heaven, aren’t we? We truly are. The work we do will make history in each country, and our children and their children will remember us. I certainly believe so.
What is today’s date? It is May 25. Today is the day the Declaration of World Peace was proclaimed to the global community nine years ago. It’s already been nine years. We want to complete this race as soon as we can. My prayers go to you, your families, and your countries. I pray that your countries will be in God’s protection and be strong, just, and truthful nations full of comfort and freedom. I send great blessings to you. God be with you. In God, and under the banner of peace, we are one. Isn’t that true? Then let us say it out loud. Please say it with me.
We are one!