Welcome Remarks – Committee Chairman Dr. Hong Il-sik
Your Excellencies and distinguished guests!
We are gathered today to congratulate and encourage the 2020 Sunhak Peace Prize Laureates. I sincerely thank you for joining us on this special occasion. Furthermore, I would like to welcome and thank the former and current heads of states and various representatives from around the world who are here with us. This year’s award ceremony is especially meaningful as it marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of the founder, Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon.
Above all, I would like to extend my deepest respect and sincere congratulations to this year’s laureates: Founders’ Centenary Award Laureate, former United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and the Sunhak Peace Prize Laureates President Macky Sall of the Republic of Senegal and International Honorary President of Religions for Peace Bishop Munib Younan. Your dedication and achievements in realizing peace for the sake of humanity have made you the heroes of today’s ceremony.
The Sunhak Peace Prize was founded at the behest of Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, the wife of the late Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon, to honor and preserve his ideals, legacy and achievements. In selecting this year’s laureates, the Sunhak Peace Prize Committee focused on the founders’ principles of interdependence, mutual prosperity and universally shared values to commemorate the centenary of Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon.
Peace for humanity can only be achieved when a peaceful global community in which all nations live together in prosperity and in respect of each other is realized. As a mere student of the humanities and not a religious or political leader, I have had endless respect and the highest esteem for Rev. Moon’s insight into history of human civilization that transcends any and all secular boundaries and discrimination and for his life-long endeavor and consistency in word and action toward love and achieving peace. Rev. Moon has pioneered the path toward humanity’s common prosperity through movements that dissolved barriers, promoted the standardization of technology, and advanced religious harmony worldwide. With the heart of a father, Rev. Moon desired to embrace all humanity. I believe that his leadership of love will serve as a great lesson to the leaders around the world today who, led by national interest, are unable to see the wider and greater world and future.
The founders have consistently emphasized throughout their lives that ”Peace can only be achieved when we dissolve the barriers that lie between us and help and love each other.” In a world that is becoming more and more divided, we must act swiftly to foster a culture of peace. We need to move beyond the interests of personal and narrower gain toward creating a new culture of peace for the sake of humanity’s future fate.
The laureates receiving the awards today, former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, President Macky Sall of the Republic of Senegal and International Honorary President of Religions for Peace Bishop Munib Younan have led the way in creating such a world. I would like to express, once again, my deepest respects and heartfelt congratulations to the three great people receiving the 2020 Sunhak Peace Prize today.
The Sunhak Peace Prize will continue to discover courageous and righteous people who are dedicating their lives for humanity’s peace. Let us all create a noble culture of peace full of grace.
Lastly, thank you again for joining us today and I wish you and your families peace and prosperity. Thank you.
February 5, 2020
Chair Hong Il-sik
Sunhak Peace Prize Committee Chairman