To bring God’s healing love to America on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the September 11th terroist attack, our True Parents brought Dr. Bo Hi Pak and the Little Angels Children's Folk Ballet of Korea to New York. Ceremonies were held at the UN General Assembly and Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan.
Each of the Little Angels placed a rose at the foot of the Memorial Wall mural.
In the august surroundings of the United Nations and before H.E. Joseph Deiss, President of the UN General Assembly, the Little Angels, draped in traditional Korean dress, sang Amazing Grace, Children of the World Unite, and Arirang, all of which expressed the heart of the people of Korea and the longing of all children for world peace. The President and his staff were extremely moved by the performance and commended the Little Angels for their professionalism and sense of world mission. Dr. Deiss, former president of the Swiss Confederation, who served as president of the 65th session of the UN General Assembly, completed his term of office on Sept. 12, 2011.
The event was organized by Universal Peace Federation (UPF) International President Dr. Thomas G. Walsh and UPF Secretary General Taj Hamad. Logistics and hospitality were handled by Dr. Frank LaGrotteria, Tomiko Duggan, Genie Kagawa, and Philippa Clarke.
The 31 girls and one boy arrived in New York on Sept. 8, 2011 and stayed at the New Yorker Hotel. Besides the performances, they also were able to do some sightseeing, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a performance of Zarkana by the Cirque du Soleil at Radio City Music Hall, the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Battery Park, and numerous visits to Koreatown (K-town) for Korean food.
On September 9, 2011 a special ceremony was held at the Fire Department of New York Memorial Wall, alongside Fire Department Engine Company 10, directly across from the World Trade Center (Ground Zero). These firefighters were among the first responders to the catastrophe that occurred on 9/11. The Memorial Wall, a 56-foot bronze bas-relief sculpture, honors the memory of the 343 firefighters who died on that tragic day. The names are etched in the bronze. An inscription reads, “Dedicated to those who fell and to those who carry on – May we never forget.”
The Little Angels honored the memory of 343 firefighters who died on 9/11.
The bus carrying the children dropped the group off several blocks away from Ground Zero. Streets were already closing as preparations were underway for the official opening of the 9/11 Memorial, which followed two days later. The angelic children, in their blue- and white uniforms and red berets, attracted attention from many tourists and stood in contrast to Ground Zero, which for ten long years was associated with death and terror, but which has now been transformed through the healing grace of time into a holy place of remembrance.
At the Memorial Wall, the Little Angels stood in line, then two girls and Dr. Pak brought the wreath forward and set it against the wall. Many media, including Korea’s KBS television network, and spectators were snapping photos and watching the scene unfold. Then all the children came forward and placed a rose at the base of the mural. When this was done, they sang songs prepared for the occasion.
After that, they went to the wall where the names of the heroes were inscribed, and they touched the names with their hands in white gloves. Dr. LaGrotteria said afterwards, “My tears poured out - I could imagine the deep comfort those brave men and women now in heaven could feel when these living angels touched their names and held their sacrifice in such deep respect at that moment. It was really awesome!”
Founded in 1962 by the Rev. and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon, the Little Angels have visited 21 nations since June 2010 to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Korean War and to thank the nations that participated under the banner of the United Nations.
Contributed by William Selig, Executive Director (USA), Little Angels World Peace Tour, Korean War 60th Anniversary.