Seattle Middle School CVA Learns through Nature

Seattle Middle School CVA Learns through Nature

“The theme for our class this year has been ‘Identity and Destiny.’ Each person has a unique way through which he or she can contribute to God’s work.”

Core Values Academy Middle School students and mentors from Seattle excitedly completed an overnight hike to Talapus Lake in Washington on May 20 and 21. Trekking through snow-covered trails, the class had to work together to set up camp, create a campfire, and prepare meals.

In the weeks leading up to the hike, Middle School students worked as a class to create a list of essentials, divvying up responsibilities and ensuring they had the proper equipment. Middle School mentor, Kenshu Aoki, shared the meaning behind planning for the hike saying, “Our purpose is to reflect and ponder about our God-given destiny as we lay under the stars. The theme for our class this year has been ‘Identity and Destiny.’ Each person has a unique way through which he or she can contribute to God’s work.”

Family Peace Association affirms that nature is one of the best environments for our spiritual growth. It is in nature that we challenge our limitations, understanding who we are and where we are at on our spiritual path to becoming sons and daughters of God.

Seattle CVL puts on Senior Campfire -Overnight Edition-

Seattle CVL puts on Senior Campfire -Overnight Edition-

Seattle, Washington

Brothers and sisters from FPA Seattle’s Core Values for Life hosted high school seniors in a night of fun in the second Senior Campfire. With activities like kayaking, s’more-making and games, CVL members strive to not only have fun with their younger brothers and sisters, but also create an environment where young people can express their excitement or anxiety for the future, ask questions and build relationships, expanding their family and creating a strong foundation for their future.

It was great to feel the caring environment throughout the prepared activities. The time together was nice and peaceful as we also prepared meals together and tidied up the house. Though it was a short trip, the conversations and connections that happened were sweet and comforting, just like the time I have with my family. I am sure God enjoyed the moment as well. I hope this event would happen again since the kind of connection that occurred is better shared and expanded than kept alone.

-Ohnshim (18)

CVA High School Students Lecture on the Principles of Creation

CVA High School Students Lecture on the Principles of Creation

Seattle, Washington: High School students from Seattle’s Core Values Academy presented lectures for the community on Saturday, April 22. Working as partners or individually, lecturers addressed important topics including the characteristics of God, spirit world and the purpose of creation. Audience members included parents and CVA Middle School students who were engaged in question and answer sessions following each presentation. Brothers and sisters from Core Values for Life also attended, participating as evaluators for the evening, asking hard-hitting questions and sharing advice to improve presentation skills.

CVA High School teachers tallied up points from the evaluation to determine the top lecture team. Congratulations to the winning team: lecturers Kent Mayoya and Pilsung Kwak, with research and creative assistance from team member Naomi Mayoya.

CVA Principal Maruko Breland shared, “The purpose of this is to not just know it in our heads but to really embody it in our lives. I hope that the high schoolers feel a better sense of doing so after this experience.”

“You guys did a great job. I can see you guys coming to my university… and that’s really inspiring. You really owned it and presented very well and I was really impressed.”

CVL Sister

(Age 27)

“It’s a really great idea because it encourages creative thinking and critical thinking; not just reciting something but thinking, ‘Why is this important?’ and thinking about how it is relevant.”

CVL Sister

(Age 26)

“I like the focus on the perspective that God is the center of Providence because it helped me understand that it’s important to bring God into especially the Three Great Blessings. It’s a good perspective to have.”

CVL Brother

(Age 29)

“Everyone took it seriously and asked many questions, really focusing on the presentations and how to help the presenters improve. I look forward to that progression. You have to imagine from God’s viewpoint, it’s like a new wave of truth-tellers coming into societies. It’s very important.”

Howard Self

President, FPA-USA

“They say you learn the most when you teach it…new opportunities to teach Principle is good. I like how everyone was pretty serious in preparing for it. I saw before that people were rehearsing and taking it seriously. I was inspired by that.”

Community Parent

(Age 35)

Senior Campfire in Seattle, Washington

Senior Campfire in Seattle, Washington

High School Seniors and college students in the Seattle community got together for an evening of fun and bonding on March 31. The “Senior Campfire” was organized by young adults in Core Values for Life to enjoy the company of their younger brothers and sisters with an outdoor barbecue and getting-to-know-you games around the campfire. And, of course, the night was topped off with roasted marshmallows, chocolate and graham crackers.

Core Values Kickoff!

Core Values Kickoff!

Core Values Academy (CVA) and Core Values Life (CVL) made an entrance for the 2016-2017 academic year this Fall.

CVA Seattle children show off their hand prints

CVA in Seattle began the first day with a collaborative project between CVA Elementary students and their older brothers and sisters to answer the question, “What can I contribute to CVA this year?” Young and older wrote their answers on cutouts of their traced hands and combined it onto the CVA Tree that will decorate the community center all year long.

Middle and High School CVA, now beginning with joint activities between both classes, combines fun and mentorship before diving into discussion groups on life of faith, identity, destiny, and much more. This year, CVA is bringing more focus on the aspect of SERVICE and emphasizing the importance of parent and community involvement.

CVA New York/New Jersey gathers at the community park for family activities

Families from New York and New Jersey started off the CVA year with activities for parents and children. After setting internal and external goals, the families had time to share reflections and play together at a local park. Families plan on gathering every other week for education, activities, and reflection. Heavy parent involvement is a key to making these gatherings productive and relevant to Blessed children education as the community looks to the future.

Core Value Life (CVL) for college students and young professionals started strong with an exciting lecture and discussion led by Mr. Patrick Nolan. The first presentation pinpointed the topic: Culture VS. Structure. Those outside WA state are able to participate through online hangouts hosted by FPA USA Director of Blessed Children Education, Kenshu Aoki. CVL is a platform for young adults to engage in mentorship, service, in-depth Divine Principle studies and discussion, and education and adventure workshops.

Jr. Leadership Task Force Challenge Hike: Testimony

Jr. Leadership Task Force Challenge Hike: Testimony

by Myung Thongdee (High School Senior, Jr. LTF 2nd Stage Member)

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Jr. LTF challengers assemble heavy cement bags to carry together while hiking

My internal goal for this challenge hike was to always have a good perspective and not think about myself during the hike. I made this goal because the morning of the hike I saw what we had to carry up and down the mountain and I already doubted myself saying that I could not do it because it was too heavy. Later, I thought to myself that I cannot have that kind of attitude, especially right before we leave to go do the activity.

Because I was a team leader, I really needed to check my attitude and motivation to do the hike in order for the rest of my team members to have a good attitude and perspective to also participate in the hike. This is why I made the internal goal of having a good perspective and thinking that I am not doing this for myself but I am doing this in order to build a stronger relationship with God. Whenever I reach an obstacle during this hike or any time in my life I cannot think about myself but instead think about what God would do or how God would feel. My external goal of the hike was to make it all the way up to the waterfall with my whole team and both of the cement bags.

From the moment we left the community center, I was reflecting on the hike and I felt this frustration that I cannot describe with words. By doing this hike I realized that if the team members are not able to do something, the team leader has to pick up the slack or make up for it. Although the team members do not want to do a certain task, the team leader has to do it and make a good example for the team.

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Jr. LTF teams carry heavy cement packs up the mountain

I was praying and reflecting during the hike and once I got to the waterfalls, I realized that this is what God must feel like looking at all of humankind. God has a path and task laid out for human beings but it is up to us whether we will follow the path or not. In this way I was able to feel a glimpse of how frustrated God must feel towards human beings.

Something I also learned is that no matter what the situation is, even if you want to yell at someone to put them in line, the best way to deal with it is to continue to give that person love even if it is really difficult. I also related this to our relationship with God. No matter what we do, even if we disappoint God, God will always unconditionally love us. I am so glad and thankful I was able to join this challenge and be able to feel a glimpse of what Heavenly Father feels. This challenge allowed me to make a bigger determination to God to do better and create a stronger relationship with Him and be a better example for my siblings and people around me.

I am really thankful for my team because I was able to learn a lot and grow from these experiences. I am grateful for my teammates because although it was very difficult, they tried their hardest!

Thank you!