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Reflections on the ILC2020—Asia Pacific, Sept. 11-13, 2020

Wow, that was great. I saw the opening; it was pretty impressive. Right now, I can only say: Bravo to the organizers. The theme is so relevant to today’s world. Excellent!

- Mr. Henry Lee, honorary consul, Consulate of Malaysia in Toronto, Canada

It was an enriching experience throughout the three-day conference. Not only was it inspiring to see so many distinguished leaders in the world who are working together with UPF towards a common vision—peace, but it also was encouraging to hear the constructive, specific advice they gave that we can put into action for the realization of world peace. 

The first session that I participated in, the IAPD session, had quite a profound impact on me.  I was moved by the speakers’ sincere heart of wanting to assist the UN, and their call for all religious leaders in the world to take ownership as peace-loving global citizens. Furthermore, seeing the speakers’ clear awareness of the destructiveness of religious conflicts, I also was touched by their love for all humankind and determination to resolve such conflicts by reaching out to other religions.  I strongly feel that the UN needs spirituality and religious support, so that it can truly fulfill its mission in achieving peace under Heavenly Parent.

- Simon Pang, Hong Kong

Reflections from Indonesia

The opening remarks of Dr. Julia Moon’s speech inspired me: "The time has come for women to save the world," as did these remarks the first lady from Palau made in her speech: "Together, we can make a positive change."

- Mrs. Herawaty R. Paeran, Ambassador for Peace, Indonesia

Greetings of peace. UPF is very interesting and amazing. This movement co-founded by Dr. Sun Myung Moon really needs to be implemented around the world. The Rally of Hope programs and the ILC2020 are great and very inspiring. I am the executive director of the Ate Keleng Foundation, a social institution that belongs to the GBKP (Gereja Batak Karo Protestan), a church, but it provides services to all people, without any boundaries. I will promote [the work of] UPF in our good governance system and in our organization’s culture, as well as in community’s organization we assist. I am very blessed [to be a part of] this program.

- Rev. Yusuf Tarigan, executive director, Ate Keleng Foundation, GBKP church, Indonesia

I am so glad knowing how important the role of leadership is in peace and in education. All of UPF's activities are very useful in understanding issues in societies and solving them peacefully.

- Dr. Meisuri, head of English Literature Study Program, State University of Medan

The sharing of information through this UPF [conference] truly enhanced our insights, and I hope that UPF can conduct another similar event again with different topics.

- Ummah Karimah, M. PD, Muhammadiyah University, Jakarta

All the panelists gave positive reasons for interdependence among people around the world in order to vanquish COVID-19. I totally agree with what Dr. Sung Bae Jin said during the IAAP session: “The Family is the center of moral values, and becomes the epicenter of national development and peace-building in the world. … The family is the starting point and source of cultural practice. The family is where we study.” I also strongly support what Prof. Shamsher Ali, former president of the Bangladesh Academy of Sciences, and the founding vice chancellor of Bangladesh Open University, said: "We must work together to fight the war against the coronavirus, which, although small,  kills human lives, so that gradually it does not shut down and deplete humans on the earth. We hope that a vaccine will appear soon, so that we can prevent additional loss of lives in this world.”

- Dr. Osep Hijuzaman, head of Academic Division, Wastukancana Institute of Technology

Reflections from India

Warm congratulations on the highly successful ILC with clear outcomes and roadmaps for future action. Please count on me for any support. I am particularly keen on seeing movement on the Asia Pacific Union, as regional integration has been my specialization and first love since joining the Indian diplomatic service. We must give serious consideration and top priority to further advance the Asia Pacific Union as it is revealed from Dr. Moon’s heavenly inspiration. As always, my wife and I are proud to be a part of UPF’s bigger family.

- Ambassador K.V. Rajan, former Indian ambassador

Reflections from Nepal

I have been invited by my friend Hon. Ek Nath Dhakal to participate in the ILCs in Korea, but was not able to do so. … Fortunately, this time, I was able to attend most of the sessions of the ILC. UPF’s video presentation was very impressive. Unbelievable work has been done by UPF in the past 15 years. All the sessions were perfectly managed, and the speakers and moderators were brilliant. As a current member of parliament, I found UPF’s message to be very comprehensive and useful. Surely, I will join its future activities too.

- Hon. Ram Narayan Bidari, chairman of the Parliament Committee, Nepal

Reflections from Fiji

I am so happy and sincerely overwhelmed with the ILC, and thankful for having the opportunity to deliver my speech. Please convey my big vinaka vakalevu, kamsahamnida (“thank you very much”) to all involved.

- Mdm. Adi Koila Mara Nailatikau, former First Lady, Fiji

Reflections from the Philippines

First and foremost, I would like to say congratulations to UPF, the International Leadership Conference and other branches of UPF for the successful three-day worldwide online assembly. I am truly amazed by the participants—the religious leaders, political leaders and people of goodwill—building bridges of hope in the midst of the pandemic. This [is happening] on the occasion of the 15th anniversary of UPF but particularly as a token of gratitude to and remembrance of Rev. Moon's pioneering initiative to bridge people, religions, institutions and political ideologies of all kinds, and to build bridges of hope, because we constitute one humanity and we live on the same planet. It is an attempt to break down the walls of separation and individualism and affirm that we belong to one family, the family of humanity. And we can be one in our work for justice, work for peace. We can also be one in our care for each other and care for the planet, particularly in this time of the pandemic. A formidable crisis humanity is now facing, COVID-19 is affecting all people. Also, climate change, which many say can affect the continuity of humanity and life on the planet itself. It is for this reason that I really congratulate UPF for reaching out to all people, regardless of differences, and to face this pandemic with great hope, hope that we will not only be able to overcome the crisis but hope for a brighter future when we stand together in the face of crisis and establish our unity and [come to] understanding of our differences. While these differences are important, there are universal values that are greater than us and our institutions; these are family, love, equity, justice and peace. I think the foundation [laid] by Rev. Moon and his wife 15 years ago will bear fruit. Some fruit will be 30-fold, 60-fold, and others, 100-fold. So, I am with all the people of goodwill, with all the religious and political leaders in having a firm faith and hope not only for the future of humanity but also for the future of cooperation and partnership for the greater good of humanity and the planet.

Thank you very much and God bless you all.

- Father Eliseo Mercado, director of the Institute for Autonomy and Governance and president of Notre Dame University, Philippines (1992-2002)

The International Leadership Conferences give participants opportunities to prepare themselves for bigger leadership for the greater good. [Through the] words of wisdom that [were shared] from past and present [leaders in the] religious, business, government, non-government and academic sectors around the world, we could learn about advanced leadership opportunities. … We realized how we could develop programs that could answer issues, develop more advanced solutions to global issues, and be receptive to the suggestions of others for use in wise recovery and [in going in the] right direction. Sustainable development may be achieved through cooperation, research, planning and collaboration. Thus, our desired goal of mutual interdependence, sovereignty, peace, mutual prosperity can easily be achieved.

Academia-education and its system is the source of hope that builds the character of a nation. The goal of Professors World Peace Academy (PWPA)-Philippines is to see a sustainable tomorrow by sharing and proactively living for our family, neighbors, especially the children, who are the future of every nation. A call to PWPA-Philippines [to carry out] its commitment of providing "provisionary teachers and professionals" who can complement each other in the pursuit of quality education is now on. Through the constant meeting of minds, giving importance to all, and collaboration, interdependence can be achieved, mutual prosperity and values can be attained, and international leadership can be realized. I am honored to have been invited to attend the ILC2020. Thank you.   

- Dr. Rebecca Andrade, secretary general, PWPA-Philippines

First, I would like to thank UPF for inviting me to join the first virtual International Leadership Conference. The insights from [leaders] from many different countries is very important, and their expertise is very much appreciated. About the action that we are about to take, I support the resolution UPF made. Again, thank you very much and God bless us all.

- Rev. Leonilo A. Aguja, vice president for Luzon, National Auxiliary Chaplaincy Philippines (NACPHIL)

What struck me most [were the remarks from and experiences shared by]:

  1. Yoshinabu Miyake, chair of the board of International Shinto Studies, who shared a historical framework from the founding of the UN to the present year, 2020. The [framework] provided me with a perspective and context for understanding the economic, political, religious and health events and upheavals that occurred throughout the years. Indeed, it is a strategic and holistic view of the world that can better prepare us for what is yet to come during and after COVID-19; thereby, [it enables] nation-states and religions to better see “the forest first before the trees.”
  1. Ho Myung, general secretary of the Taego Buddhist Order in Korea, who said that the hope out of this pandemic relies on religious leaders forgetting their differences, trusting each other and working together. Peace within families, peace among religions will contribute to world peace and freedom from the sickness and pain that we are experiencing now.
  1. Jenny Chalmers, Anglican priest from New Zealand, who shared her faith experience witnessing violence and terrorism.

- Jaime T. Cempron, Ph.D.

Reflections on the IAFLP Session

Kudos! As women, we could build a channel of responsibilities and opportunities for others and create a greater impact in our society and the world.

- Mary Grace Andoy Pozon, instructor, Bohol Island State University

All the speakers’ presentations and messages were inspiring, and I am so happy to know that there is such a group as the IAFLP, which is so eager to make the lives of people hopeful and wonderful.

- Eleonor Brosas Garcia, chief human resource specialist, Civil Service Commission RO8

Thanks for your invitation to attend this International Leadership Conference. It was indeed a very successful event with very interesting topics from different renowned international speakers … We hope and pray that this event will have a big impact on the attainment of global peace.

- Cecile Dy, vice chairman, Regional Development Council Region 02

I was inspired by the creativity and commitment of the first ladies and women leaders to continue improving their communities and nations. May the opportunity for them to increase their network and exchange best practices continue and develop. Thank you for the opportunity to attend this well-organized and coordinated event. God bless you all in the Asia-Oceania region.

- Friederike E. Buczyk, member of the Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP)

It was a very productive and informative conference. The speakers were excellent. True, women can be agents of change. Targeting the family, as the basic unit of society, and the grassroots makes a lot of difference in achieving the desired goal for the community. In these trying times, we can unite as one solid rock and contribute for the betterment [of society]. We must work to be resilient and strong in our battle against the unseen enemy and strong in our endeavor to the “new normal.” We should also put emphasis on the importance of our mental health in order to be sane at this difficult time of the pandemic … Some best practices were mentioned, however, we expect a more vivid picture on how to go on during a pandemic. I would like to thank the organizers; this [conference] became an avenue to prove that women leaders, and girls can make a difference. I am grateful for the opportunity [to have been able to participate]; I learned a lot.

- Lourdes Abello Juan-Alzate, assistant chief (director II), Senate of the Philippines

To go back to the executive summary for the Asia Pacific ILC, click here.

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