More than 800 mourners gathered at the DoubleTree Hotel in Tarrytown, NY Friday evening, Sept. 14, 2012, to witness a live broadcast of the Seonghwa (funeral) ceremony for Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the founder of the Unification movement.
The Tarrytown group joined dozens of Unificationist congregations across the United States that were tapping into the broadcast of a religious pageant in Gapyeong Korea that drew a crowd of 35,000.
“The highlight of the program was the laying on of long-stem red roses on an altar beneath a portrait of the Founder,” said Rev. David Rendel, an executive for the Unification Church headquarters in New York City. “It was wonderful, dignified, with a great sense of intimacy. We were very moved by the whole program, especially by the tribute prayer from Dr. Bo Hi Pak. The broadcast was flawless except for a brief technical interruption,” he added.
Rev. Edner Pierre-Louis of Manhattan served as the Master of Ceremonies. The invocation was given by Mr. Noah Ross.
“Rev. Pierre-Louis encouraged us to get into a reflective attitude by telling us that Father’s passing was both a sad time and a happy time,” Toby Gullery, a young Unifcationist, told Unificationnews, adding: “Noah Ross’ prayer was about how we should be happy for True Father, because True Father finally has a chance to rest. He also said that it’s a wake-up call for the rest of us to start shouldering his life’s work.”