|CARP Holds First Annual Winter Ball
On Friday, January 8, 2010, the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP) hosted the First Annual Winter Ball & Networking Dinner in the Hammerstein Ballroom of the Manhattan Center in New York City. This premiere event, inspired by Rev. In Jin Moon, President & CEO of HSA-UWC America, was held for the college age community, attracting 400 young adults from across the country and some from even Europe and Canada.
The evening began with a reception hour where young adults networked with young professionals – Unificationists who have graduated college and are pursuing their careers in the professional world – and received guidance and advice on the importance of finding a balance between academic and spiritual needs. Career areas that were represented were finance, healthcare, IT, and others.
The gala continued on with an invocation offered by Pastor Jaga Gavin, the National Youth Pastor of Lovin’ Life Ministries. Pastor David Hunter, who ministers over the New Jersey youth congregation, emceed the event. He guided the evening into dinner and socializing, then introduced the musical performance by the Lovin’ Life Band. Furthermore, he shared CARP’s new vision:
“The Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles supports college students to become
men and women of great integrity who are inspired to offer their God-given talents and skills
for the betterment of the world.”
The Winter Ball was graced with the presence of Reverend Moon and her family and was blessed to receive her loving words and guidance as the keynote address. Reverend Moon began her message with a greeting from True Parents by saying, “I know that my parents are very much looking forward to this special evening and thinking very much of all of you who are representing the future of the American movement and of America. I know that they have great hopes and dreams for all of you.”
She shared her hopes about CARP's future as an organization that represents True Parents and the Unification movement on college campuses, “CARP can be the mechanism that introduces the beauty of the Divine Principle and the beauty of our True Parents on campus.
Reverend Moon added, “I implore all of you to never let go of the internal excellence, which is an understanding of who you are as God’s eternal sons and daughters. Regardless of where we go in our lives and regardless of what profession we decide, we should always be a combination of external excellence and internal excellence.”
On the essence of the new CARP, she explained “There needs to be no sacrifice of the internal excellence in pursuit of the external excellence. There is no reason that you cannot end up on Capitol Hill as a senator or a congressman and still be that great man or woman of integrity and know that you are there to serve humanity and not just to better yourself. Then whatever we do in our life, we will touch it with the power of true love and we will invite God in to everything we do, and that is what makes life beautiful.”
In addition, with great passion, she expressed her heart and concern for the Unificationists in Japan who are being persecuted with terribly unjust and unconstitutional treatment: being beaten, starved, and raped, not because they were criminals or had broken the law, but because of their religion. Rev. In Jin Moon beseeched the young adults to stand up and be proud of their faith and to realize that the plight of the Unification Church members in Japan is the plight of the members here in the U.S., “Decide today that we will become the proud sons and daughters of God. Our brothers and sisters in Japan have been denied their basic human rights. CARP is an incredibly important organization that will take this cause and excite the campuses to uphold religious freedom and human rights.”
As Reverend Moon concluded her address, the audience thanked her with a standing ovation.
Eric “Tiger” Walters, an Anthropology major at Montgomery County Community College, commented later, “I was inspired by Rev. In Jin Moon’s point on being able to speak up for my faith in my college life and finding a way to not only do well in school but to communicate who I am. It is extremely important.”
In keeping true to her message on the importance of both academic and spiritual excellence, Reverend Moon donated over $5000 towards scholarship awards in those areas for college students. The awards were divided in to three categories, and also reflect the three agendas of CARP: Nurturing a Spiritual Life, Excelling in Academics, and Creating a Generation of Peace. The prize amounts were $1000, $500, and $250 respectively.
In the category of Nurturing a Spiritual Life, the awardees were:
1st Place – Mr. Toyomichi Hagiwara, a freshman at the City University of New York City College, an Architecture major
2nd Place – Ms. Jung Joo Oh, a junior at George Washington University, an International Affairs and Political Science double major
3rd Place – Ms. Leilani Owens, a freshman at Montclair State University, a Music Education major
In the category of Excelling in Academics, the awardees were:
1st Place – Ms. Eiko Tsukamoto, a senior at the University of California at Berkeley, a Social Welfare and Education double major
2nd Place – Ms. Cathlene Bell, a junior at Felician College, a Communications and Global Peace & Justice Studies double major
3rd Place – Ms. Vera Goldberg, a junior at the University of Pennsylvania, a Public Health major
In the category of Creating a Generation of Peace, the best CARP chapters were:
1st Place – Cornell University
2nd Place – University of California at Berkeley
3rd Place – University of Maryland at College Park
The Winter Ball gala concluded with a dance exhibition from Rev. In Jin Moon’s daughter Miss Ariana Shin Sun Moon. It showcased the dignity and sophistication of ballroom dancing and inspired the young adults to take the floor and join together in the elegant activity.
Even after a good two hours of dancing, the evening came to a close earlier than many of the young adults had hoped.
CARP alumna Yoko Matsushita summed up the event well, “I loved the beauty and professionalism and the attention to every detail that the organizers put in to the Winter Ball. I feel encouraged to be excellent and am moved by the new direction of CARP.”
Other remarks from some young adults who attended included:
“The Winter Ball was more than I ever expected it to be. Listening to Rev. In Jin Moon speak was very inspiring and she is providing a structure for every young adult to connect with. It was a great experience to celebrate God together as young adults.” – Jung Joo Oh, George Washington University, an International Affairs and Political Science double major and award winner
“I am really inspired that Rev. In Jin Moon is taking initiative to bring awareness to the situation in Japan and to support the brothers and sisters there.” – Julie Randolph, Anne Arundel Community College
“I really like the new vision and mission statement of CARP and I think that Rev. In Jin Moon is right on the mark.” – Jario Gavin, Youth Pastor for the Unification Church of Chicago, and pursuing a major in Pastoral Studies
Written by Hero Hernandez, president of CARP USA