Catholic Q&A

In recent years I hear that mutual dialogue and cooperation among Christian denominations has increased. Then why do you exclude the Unification Church by saying that it is not Christian?

Originally for Christians it was declared, “There is one Lord and one Faith.” (Ephesians 4.5). Also, the Church which has a mission to proclaim the reconciliation and love of God to the world is divided, and this is not the way Christianity ought to be. This has been a source of great distress to various Christian denominations, and there has been a growing movement to promote the unity of faith among them. This is known as “Ecumenism.” In Japan as well denominations have recently cooperated mutually, to publish a common Japanese translation of the Bible. What inspired this was a desire to use the same Japanese translation of the Bible, since the Bible is the same for all, regardless of denominational affiliation. To obtain an opening like this for various denominations to speak and work together and learn from each other’s traditions, is something very precious. It makes people aware of things that their own Churches lack, and we can also enrich the life that the Christian faith has to offer.

Regrettably though, there are some emerging religions that cannot be engaged in such ecumenism. Yet they speak in the name of Christianity and dupe people, and the “Unification Church” or “Fundamentalist Movement” (officially known as the “Unification Church of World Christianity”) is one such group. Church leaders need to be wary of them, since they use clever means to sneak into Christian schools and institutions, drag in deceived people, and cause problems in various places.

The Unification Church, founded in 1954 in South Korea by Sun Myung Moon, is a new religion that combines the ‘Way of Yin and Yang’ and ‘Shamanism.’ Sun Myung Moon interprets the Bible arbitrarily and uses it at his own convenience, but in the end he claims that he is the Messiah of the Second Coming. He declares that he himself will bring about the salvation that Jesus could not. They have a scripture called the “Divine Principle,” which is supposed to reveal the truth for the first time.

I have no intention of going into detail here concerning the teachings of the Unification Church, but regardless of what they are, we possess a key to discern orthodox Christian faith, and that is to observe who we say is Jesus Christ. Through Jesus, God has revealed Himself in a decisive way, only once in history. Christianity is to believe that Jesus is the absolute mediator of God. If we say that others do what Jesus could not do, then it is no longer Christianity. Also, if we say that other books will reveal what the Bible did not reveal, that too is no longer Christianity. This is the essence of the Christian faith.

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