11. Learning the Principles: Socialization of Children within the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification through Sunday School
Peter Åkerbäck [+]
Stockholm University, Sweden
One fundamental part of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (formerly Unification Church) theology is its strong focus on the family and, in relation to that, children growing up in the movement. This article focuses on the movement’s attempts to socialize its second generation into becoming members of the parent’s religion. This question is especially urgent in this religious group. A central part of Reverend Sun Myung Moon´s theology concerns his assignment to restore humankind to its “true linage”. Since the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden humanity has been part of a “false lineage”, but couples that are blessed and married within the movement are “restored”. The children born in such marriages are seen as being born without the burden of original sin. These children are therefore considered not only as very special but also as the hope for all humankind and a possibility for lasting peace and a heavenly kingdom. So how does this movement socialize their second generation to this assignment? This question is examined investigating Sunday school material and interviews with parents and second generation members.