Good News Corps Festival in Fukuoka
On the 27th, the Good News Corps Festival team landed on Japanese soil.
The ferry which departed from Busan in the early morning arrived at Hakata Port in Fukuoka, and the volunteers stepped off the boat, faces filled with both worry and excitement. This was the Good News Corps Festival that was to be held in Japan for the first time, despite it taking place for the past 15 years in Korea. This performance would have been a special performance for those watching it but just as much for those preparing for it.
As soon as they stepped out of the Hakata Port, they did not take long to arrive at the venue for the Good News Corps Festival, the Sun Palace Hotel.
Despite their upbeat hearts, the organising team and the other volunteers soon gathered their hearts together to prepare for the event.
We heard from the Director of IYF Kyushu, Jin Ho Lee, who works in Fukuoka, to listen about the preparation process of the Good News Corps Festival.
“Last November, I heard for the first time that we would be having the Good News Corps Festival in both Fukuoka and Hiroshima. To be honest, the IYF branches in Japan have not been that active so, it was a very big burden to have to prepare for events such as the Good News Corps Festival. However, just this once, I wanted to do this work with a happy heart. While preparing for the Good News Corps Festival, I spent such a joyful time meeting new people and advertising this event.
While meeting a variety of people such as politicians to ask for help and support of the Good News Corps Festival, on the 9th of February, I met one member of the Good News Corps Festival preparation team and a Congressman. As the Congressman heard the story of the volunteer, whose life had changed through the one year of Overseas Volunteering, the Congressman’s heart was opened and notably said that he would like to support such an organization and linked us immediately to the city of Fukuoka, Afterwards, we were able to experience the wonderful works as we were able to gain a lot of sponsorship such as the Fukuoka Board of Education, the NHK Fukuoka Broadcasting Station, Consulate General of the Republic of Korea in Fukuoka and the Fukuoka Culture and Arts Foundation. By the support provided by those groups, we were able to advertise this event in schools, community centers and the Resident’s Association. Every evening, after advertising with the Directors of the IYF in Japan and the branch members, we shared our happiness while sharing the stories that we have faced on that day. I am looking forward to today’s performance.”
The biggest broadcasting station in Japan NHK as broadcasted the Good News Corps Festival in Fukuoka. This showed how much the interest towards this event had grown amongst the people.
Before the performance on this day, the founder of IYF, Pastor Ock Soo Park, delivered the Mind Lecture to many politicians in Politics through Congressman Yoshida Daisaku. Through many examples, he spoke about the world of the heart and through the Mind Education, it was a good opportunity to introduce the activities of the IYF.
As it became closer to 7pm (the start of the performance), the many people began to line up in front of the Sun Palace Hotel Hall. 1200 people filled the seats of the hall.
“While doing this tour, I was so grateful to those who helped. Especially, I had volunteered in America and I know that it is difficult to rent venues with thousands of seats but I think that the people in the branch in Japan really worked with all their hearts. It is so amazing that we have a branch even in Japan and I felt thankful that we were working with the same heart. – 13th Class to America, Roo Ri Lee.
“As I watched the performance it was very exciting. The performers’ smiling faces expressions were so good that it made me smile as well. For two hours, I saw performances from around the world and it felt like I was also travelling. Thank you.” – Misuko / 63
“Today’s performance was so good. I could feel the hearts of the volunteers and they were no less than professionals. It was so touching that I cried. –Hayashi Yasuko/ 65
“I came after being introduced by my Korean Class Teacher. The costumes were so great, the songs and the dances were so good as well.” -Hisekawa Gyoko/ 29
“The performance was really great. I could feel the energy of the youth and I was touched. The story that they told us was so touching and I didn’t know that there was such an event but I am so happy that I got to know about it through this opportunity. – Miyasaki/ 62
After all the performances, lastly, the founder of the IYF, Pastor Ock Soo Park took to the stage, Pastor Ock Soo Park used the example of the ‘Three Children and the Leopard’ No matter how hard one tried to tame the wild leopard by feeding it porridge, it’s true nature was revealed in the first opportunity that it got. In the same way, he stated that because the love of God is deeply rooted inside of the person’s heart, if we were to think carefully, we will be able to reveal our true nature of love.
“The IYF are leading the youth to be happy and loving through methods such as this. Next, I want to come to Japan again to meet the young people of Japan. I want to speak with them and tell them about the world of the heart, so that they can have a clean and sound mind to lead the beautiful Japan in the future.”
After the event, Noda Kuniyoshi, the Chief Justice of the Democratic Party, who had delivered the congratulatory message on this day, and Pastor Ock Soo Park exchanged plaques of appreciation.
Noda Kuniyoshi, the Chief Justice of the Democratic Party, who had helped make the event possible gave us his remarks,
“I was so surprised by your enthusiasm. The excitement of youth has been delivered to my heart. I was deeply touched by your performance today. It was one of the best performances that I have ever seen. Through the message of Pastor Ock Soo Park, I was able to learn about the true meaning of love. I am a politician and I had the heart that I should treat the people with a loving heart.”
It was the first performance ever to be held in Japan. Moreover, it was in front of the famously unemotional Japanese people. However, the Japanese public were able to meet the happiness and joy portrayed by the truthful hearts of the 15th Class Volunteers. When a changed heart meets another heart and becomes one, more changes occur. This joyful change has also begun on Japanese soil.
The final performance of the Good News Corps Festival was on the 28th of February, in Hiroshima.