The following testimony is from Agnes Jambor, a 31-year-old first-generation Unificationist in Hungary. She was blessed in marriage to Japan-resident Keiichi (last name withheld at request of Japanese Unification Church) in 2005 and has been maintaining long-distance communication with him since their Blessing. Keiichi was kidnapped by faith-breakers, so-called deprogrammers, in Japan more than four months ago and the search for him continues.
I come from a small city called Sarkad, from a poor family. I have one older brother who is 19 years my senior from a different mother and one older sister who is 14 years my senior with a different father. As you can see, my family is quite mixed. Both of my parents had a previous marriage before they married each other.
My parents were not religious, partly because until 1990, Hungary was under communism. My grandmother on my mother’s side and her family were strong Calvinists. When I was a child, I went to church with my grandmother many times because she took care of me when my parents were working. I didn’t understand much from the services. I could only see that there were many old people sitting there, and I did not like them. I also felt that they didn’t understand what they were talking about. They spoke about love, but outside of church they behaved another way. When my mother lost her job and started drinking, our so-called religious relatives did not help us and just said bad things about us. As a child, I felt that wasn’t right. They spoke about love but did not love. I sensed that something was missing from the holy texts they read at church and how they explained these texts.
My mother would say, “God is inside of us.” She was disappointed in the church, but I think not in God. She raised me up to keep a good standard – to keep my purity, to respect others, etc. I know nothing about the religious background of my father.
Why I Joined the Unification Church
My father passed away in 1991 and my mother in 1997. After their passing, I moved to live with my older brother’s family. While I was in high school, I lived in a dormitory and only went home on the weekends. My relationship with my brother and his wife was very bad, so instead of spending a national holiday with them, I accepted an invitation from a friend to visit the Unification Church center in Békéscsaba, the city in which I was going to school. That friend was working as a CARP member in Békéscsaba and through her, I was able to listen to the Divine Principle. When I heard about the human Fall, I strongly felt that this is what was missing from the Bible and other explanations. I was very sure that this was the truth I had to follow. After I finished high school, I moved to the center to live there. The church community in Békéscsaba was good and the teachings of Rev. Sun Myung Moon resonated with my way of thinking about love and peace. I joined the church that year and became a full-time CARP member.
In 2001, I moved to Szeged, which is where I now live. I was a full-time member until 2007, mostly fundraising and participating in workshops as staff.
My first Marriage Blessing was in 2000, but after five years, my Blessing broke. It was difficult to reapply for the Blessing, but I was matched again to my current fiancé, Keiichi, on December 29, 2005, in Cheong Pyeong, South Korea. At that time, True Father was asking everyone who had applied to the matching to go to Korea so that he could personally match them. It was such a special experience for me. I remember thinking the night before the matching that I did not want a Japanese spouse because communication would be difficult. My first spouse had been from Europe, and even then we had struggled to communicate. But I prayed and trusted myself to God.
Then, True Father Blessed me to a Japanese brother. I was initially afraid, but after Keiichi held my hand, as True Father instructed us to do, I felt so much peace. From that time, Keiichi always held my hand, and wherever we went, he took care of me. He also took care of one of my friends, who had trouble seeing. This considerate manner of Keiichi touched me so much. When we said goodbye after the Blessing, both of us were almost crying. After this first meeting we met again two years later. He was a full-time member in Nagoya, and I was fundraising in another country.
Every week I called him and spoke for at least one hour. We mostly talked about fundraising activities, but many times he gave me the strength to fundraise. I did everything to share my experiences with him. I sent him letters and gifts. When he came to visit me in 2008, we planned out our future. We planned that we would spend a maximum of two more years separately and use the time to build a good spiritual and financial foundation. We talked about living in Korea. We planned to prepare our legal marriage papers. However, when Keiichi went back to Japan, we both lost our jobs and struggled financially. I did not have money to call him. He did not have Internet access and was not good at writing letters. It was almost impossible to communicate. I was only able to reach him through my Japanese friends.
My Husband’s Mother Was Deprogrammed
Keiichi is 32 years old and has two younger brothers. His mother became a member of the Unification Church when Keiichi was a teenager, but she later was kidnapped and suffered at the hands of deprogrammers herself and left the church. Keiichi used to live near Tokyo, where his family still resides, but he left because he suspected that they would kidnap him for deprogramming. Until 2008, he did not have much of a relationship with his family. I think he suspected that he was in danger of being kidnapped.
I love Keiichi, my husband, very much. Although we are not legally married, in my heart and in the eyes of God he has been my husband since 2005. I have been missing the chance to talk to him now for more than four months. Before he was abducted, we made great plans for a happy family. We prepared ourselves for marriage. Now religious bigots in Japan are trying to keep us away from each other. Every day I pray that his kidnappers will release him as soon as possible. It causes me so much pain to know he is suffering under this pressure without meaning. I pray every day that this day would be the last one he spends in this way. All I want is to see him free, to embrace him again, to be together and build up our own safe home. It would be my biggest present for this Christmas to see him free again!
Contributed by Agnes Jambor.