The 1955 Moon Sun Myung sex scandal involving Ewha Woman’s University students as told in the newspapers – with additional photos and information about children born during the year.
▲ Unification Church members 劉景圭 유경규 Yoo Kyoung-kyu and 黄煥菜 황환채 Hwang Hwan-chae (later he was one of the 36 couples) witness at Ewha Woman’s University in 1955. They had both joined as students at the nearby Yonsei University in Seoul. The main building of the Ewha campus is behind them. Ewha was supported by the US Methodist Church.
May 26, 1955 경향 신문 京郷新聞 Kyunghyang-shinmun
An Ewha University student who was expelled because of a ‘cult’ problem has appealed for an investigation of the facts to the Ministry of Culture and Education.
An Ewha Woman’s University student, who had earlier been expelled from Ewha Women’s University due to her belief in a cult that goes against the Methodist belief that is the traditional religion of the school, and who attends the Seoul Unification Church (the Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity), on May 25th appealed to the 文教部 Ministry of Culture and Education that her expulsion was unfair. She also attempted to ask the Ministry to review whether the Unification Church is a cult and investigate the unilateral treatment received from the school so that she can be reinstated.
According to the student, Ewha University has not been able to assert that the Unification Church really is a cult. So the school cannot conclude that the student, who is in the middle of her studies, is entertaining a false belief, yet the school expelled the student only on those grounds.
Also, on the 23rd the student petitioned the president of the school to be reinstated. However, the president refused, since the expulsion had already been done. She concluded that the expulsion was the school’s firm policy. So the student had to appeal to the Ministry of Culture and Education.
From a 2012 Unification Church promotional video, The Life of Rev Sun Myung Moon:
“Rev Moon had sought out Christian churches, but they only persecuted him for their misunderstanding. Because of their disbelief of the prepared foundation, he had to start anew, putting new wine in new wineskins. He had to make a new beginning to pioneer a new heaven, new earth and new age. Rev Moon’s words spread like wildfire in the universities, especially the two mission schools Yonsei and Ewha Woman’s University were at the center of this whirlwind…”
In the same video a UC spokeswoman, Kang Jeong-won, explains:
“The former Chairman of the National Assembly was Lee Ki-Boong. His wife was Maria Park. She was the vice president of Ewha University at the time [when a Ewha Woman’s University law major sophomore was expelled]. A few days later, the media turned their backs on us. They slandered us saying we were a promiscuous group that dances around naked, breaks up families and so on. That was the beginning of all the bad publicity.”
LINK to the video
▲ Dong-sook sitting on the floor at the Chongpa-dong Church in Seoul. Moon is probably holding Ye-jin. Moon asked Dong-sook to participate in the ceremonies held for the birth of Ye-jin. Dong-sook had a special position in Moon’s family. In 2012 she visited Moon in hospital during his last days, and was listed as a ‘True Child’ that September.
July 5, 1955 경향 신문 Kyunghyang-shinmun page 3
The Ministry of Culture and Education recognizes the Unification Church as a 邪敎 ‘sagyo’ wicked religion (or cult) while the Unification Church denies it.
July 6, 1955 경향 신문 京郷新聞 Kyunghyang-shinmun ▼
This cartoon was published two days after Moon’s arrest on adultery charges because of complaints from Seoul’s Ewha Woman’s University.
The sign above the door says Unification Church and HSA-UWC.
M.S. [Moon Sun-myung] of the Unification Church [as he kicks a man out]:
“Can’t you read the sign! It says ‘Female College Students Welcome’ … Eek”
統一敎会 and 世界基督教統一神霊協会.
◇統一敎會에메스◇ = ◇ M.S. of the Unification Church ◇
간판을 보고믈어와! 女大生歡迎인데…익크
July 6, 1955 Seoul Daily News 서울일보 page 3
Moon Sun Myung was “Misleading women into fornication through eloquence”
July 6, 1955 동아일보 東亜日報 Dong-a Ilbo
邪敎與否(사교여부)는『노 | 탓취』
“No Touch” Policy on whether the Religion is a Cult
Moon, the Leader of the Unification of Christianity Church, has been Arrested and Charged with False Imprisonment.
Moon Sun Myung (36), the leader of the Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity, who has caused a sensation in the religious world, was arrested by the police on July 4th. The charges included evasion of military service and false imprisonment. Whether the Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity is an orthodox religion or a wicked religion (or cult) has been the talk of the town in the religious world. The Ewha Woman’s University even expelled some students for believing in the religion. Their expulsion drew public criticism. The arrest of its religious leader again attracts the notice of the world.
According to the police investigation, Mr. Moon’s place of family register is Pyongyang. He apparently came down to South Korea when January 4th retreat took place [in 1951 during the Korean War]. However, he still did not follow military conscription procedures, and he even overstated his age from 36 to 43.
In addition it has been established that he falsely imprisoned Ms. Moon Young Il (not her real name, a 22-year-old Yonsei University student) for three days and forced her to adopt his new religion.
According to a police official, the arrest and interrogation of Mr. Moon are only about the alleged violations of general criminal law, and the police will adhere to a “No Touch” policy when it comes to the church’s doctrines and code.
[The name of the imprisoned student was Choi Soon-shil, the sister of Choi Soon-wha.]
July 7, 1955 경향 신문 Kyunghyang-shinmun ▼
July 7, 1955 서울일보 Seoul Daily News page 3
“Four married women were violated” by Moon Sun Myung or by members of the Unification Church
July 7, 1955 동아일보 Dong-a Ilbo
注目(주목)끄는統 一 敎會 (통일교회)
『文敎主 (문교주)』行狀 (행상)
He posed as the son of God.
There are many women who have been sexually abused.
The behavior of Moon, the leader of the Unification Church, continues to attract attention.
Following previous report – What is the identity of The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity which has suddenly drawn such a lot of attention to itself recently due to the arrest of its leader? Did Mr. Moon indeed sexually abuse women who believe in his religion? The authorities have disclosed the two charges against him: “avoiding military service” and “unlawful imprisonment” [of a female Yonsei University student for three days]. After comprehensive discussion, and public criticism of Mr. Moon, here is some information about the religion:
◊ Indoctrination methods – New recruits have to listen to sermons about the teachings of the religion for 72 hours (three full days). The sermons are given by Church Leader Mr. Moon. The weekly lectures on Mr Moon’s doctrines start at 10 in the morning on a Monday and run until 10 in the morning on a Thursday. If anyone doubts the teachings and wants to leave, Church Leader Mr. Moon stops them from leaving by sternly saying, “If you leave, you will die.” Mr. Moon also says, “Koreans are the people chosen by God and Pyongyang is the Jerusalem of the world.” He preaches that he is the son of God, and if a woman has a sexual relationship with him, she will give birth to a world teacher [a messiah].
◊ The behavior of a man who hunts women (a sexual predator) – Mr. Moon is an eloquent speaker. They say that when he finds women who truly believe in him, he entices them into his abode (a single room inside the said Association building) and violates them. Four victims have been identified and these women are middle-aged (over 30 years of age) with husbands. Their families are above middle class. One of them is a Mrs. Kim Soon-chang (not her real name), aged 36. She was a decent well-to-do upper class housewife, but after she fell prey to Church Leader Mr. Moon’s offerings she experienced the fate of being abandoned by her husband.
◊ The financial status of the said Association – At present the Association is renting a building. The church receives donations from its 250 members in Seoul, but they do not amount to much. So the members started [a business] taking downtown landscape photographs. They then mass produce “bromide polyamide” prints which they sell all over the city.
◊ The situation of the organization – There are branches in Pusan, Taegu and elsewhere, and the headquarters are in Seoul. Each of these branches has approximately 250 members, and this makes 700 members in total. Looking at the gender balance, there are about equal numbers of men and women, and the level of education is to quite a high standard.
[Other researchers list fewer members at this time.]
▲ The Association building, known as ‘The House of Three Doors’, was used in 1955. From the left, Mrs Ok Se-hyun and Mrs Kang Hyun-shil.
Here is a story from Dr Mose Durst, former president of the UC of America:
“Mrs. Eu Gil Ja Sa, another early member of the Seoul church, tells of an extraordinary rumor spread around 1955. The church supposedly had three doors that one had to pass through before entering the central meeting hall. One had to remove, so the rumor went, an article of clothing as one passed through each door, so that presumably one entered the final hall completely naked. One courageous Christian lady came prepared, dressed in three layers of underwear, to find out the validity of this. She of course experienced nothing of what she expected, but instead listened to the church’s teachings. She later became a member.” (from Durst’s 1984 book To Bigotry No Sanction)
July 14, 1955 동아일보 Dong-a Ilbo
Six people arrested and arraigned, including Moon, the religious leader of the ‘Unification Church’
Following Earlier Report = The investigation of the so-called ‘Incident of the Holy Spirit Association of the Unification of World Christianity,’ which had been under police investigation, has concluded with the six persons involved being arrested and arraigned yesterday, the 13th, by the Seoul District Public Prosecutor’s Office under one case file.
The persons involved in this incident are currently being questioned on charges which include violating the Military Service Act, counterfeiting official documents, and violating the National Security Act. Also, according to one investigating official, there is evidence for seven counts of adultery between sect leader Moon and his female followers. It is expected that there will be a new investigation as an adultery case, but the investigation cannot proceed because so far there have been no complaints from the husbands of the female followers who committed adultery (adultery is an offense subject to complaint, so [a case] needs a victim’s complaint for indictment).
Furthermore, establishing the adultery case will provide the standard for deciding whether the religion is or is not a cult, so the development of the prosecution’s investigation is being watched with keen interest.
♢ List of those involved (arrested and arraigned)
▲ Moon Sun Myung (Sect leader) = charges of wrongful imprisonment and of violating the Military Service Act
▲ Kim Won-pil = charges of violating the National Security Act, and violating the Military Service Act
▲ Eu Hyo-min = charges of violating the Military Service Act
▲ Eu Hyo-young = charges of violating the Military Service Act
▲ Eu Hyo won = charges of counterfeiting official documents
▲ Choi Soon-shil = (woman) charges of being instrumental in the conduct of fornication
July 15, 1955 경향 신문 Kyunghyang-shinmun
六名拘束 送廳 統一教會 事件
Six people arrested and detained then sent to court in the ‘Unification Church incident’.
Concerning Unification Church leader Mr Moon (Moon Sun Myung, 36) and the five key officers of the church, who are now in detention and are being interrogated at the Public Peace National Special Intelligence Bureau, the first stage of the criminal investigation has been completed. On the afternoon of the 13th [of July], all six suspects were sent to be held in detention by the Public Prosecutor’s Office.
▲ Moon Sun Myung (church leader) = Acting against the Military Service Act and wrongful imprisonment [of a female student for three days]
▲ Eu Hyo won (cadre) = Counterfeiting of official documents
▲ Eu Hyo-min ( // ) = Acting against National Security Act
▲ Eu Hyo-young ( // ) = Acting against the Military Service and National Security Acts
▲ Kim Won-pil ( // ) = Acting against Military Service Act
▲ Choi Soon-shil = (a female believer) 淫行媒介 being instrumental in the conduct of immoral sexual acts.
These people have been undergoing formal interrogation by public prosecutor Kang Seo-yong ( 姜瑞龍 ) of the Seoul District Public Prosecutor’s Office.
Choi Soon-shil, who confessed to group sex activities, was released because of her father’s efforts. His name was Choi Seong-mo and he was a very successful businessman. He was the grandfather of Sam Park who was born in Washington, DC. in 1966.
▲ Choi Soon-wha is standing in front of Moon. Professor Choi Won-pok is at the top of the steps and Professor Kim Young-oon is standing on the right. Choi Soon-shil, the sister of Soon-wha, and the two professors were interrogated by the police during the Ewha scandal. In his journal Eu Hyo-won mentions seeing Choi Soon-shil and Kim Young-oon at the police station when he was arrested and taken there.
July 31, 1955 동아일보 Dong-a Ilbo
Church Leader Moon and Others Indicted in the Unification Church incident
Five persons involved in the ‘Unification Church incident,’ namely Moon Yong-myung (Church Leader, also known as Sun Myung), Eu Hyo-won, Eu Hyo-min, Kim Won-pil, and Eu Hyo-young have been under investigation by Prosecutor Kang Seo-yong of the Seoul District Prosecutors’ Office. On the afternoon of the 29th they were arrested and charged on charges including “violation of the Military Service Act” and “violation of the Special Measures regarding Requisitions.”
In the meantime, the Seoul District Prosecutors’ Office has been continuing its keen investigation as to whether the Unification Church Leader Moon committed “adultery.” However, since there have been no complaints from either the women allegedly victimized or their husbands, the said adultery, which has attracted a lot of attention, has not been included in the scope of these charges, and they have been charged only regarding military service matters.
▲ Another 1955 baby. Kim Myung-hee (left) with Moon Hee-jin in 1959 after their return to Korea. Moon sent her away to Japan to give birth to his child. For Kim to have the baby in Korea was a risk to himself. Moon could have been jailed for adultery again – as he had been in Pyongyang in 1946. According to the Los Angeles Times, he was jailed for bigamy in 1948. Moon wrote letters to Kim Myung-hee in Japan, but he never sent her any money. Hee-jin was born in Tokyo on August 17, 1955.
September 21, 1955 동아일보 Dong-a Ilbo
어제첫公判 統一教會 事件 ( 공판통일교회사건 )
Yesterday the first trial was held in the ‘Unification Church incident’
On September 20, ‘Unification Church’ leader Moon Sun Myung (real name, Moon Yong Myung), aged 36, appeared for the first day of his trial in Seoul District Court No. 4. At the 10:30a.m. hearing the presiding judge was Yoon Hak-no ( 尹學老 ) and the prosecutor was Kang Seo-yong ( 姜瑞龍 ) who was handling the prosecution of Moon Sun Myung. [The afternoon hearing was at 2:30p.m.] On this day the court was jam-packed with many women who seemed to be ‘Unification Church’ believers.
Defendant Moon, who has been much talked about concerning multiple alleged adulteries, on the day only stood as a defendant for charges of Military Service Act violations. This is because there were no complaints from the alleged victims. Along with him, other defendants from the same church stood trial as well: Kim Won-pil (28, violated the Military Service Act, and had raised his age by six years), Eu Hyo-won (42, failed to report to military record), Eu Hyo-min (36, same charge as above), and Eu Hyo-young (35, same charge as above).
As soon as the court session began the prosecution read the list of indictments and then the investigation into the facts proceeded. Defendant Moon did admit that he had raised his age. The legal profession still had two arguments about whether raising one’s age, even when the person subject to the draft was over 32 or 33 years old, was a violation of the Military Service Act. Nevertheless, Prosecutor Kang, in the bill of indictment, pointed out that defendant Moon “had raised his age to avoid the draft (military service) in accordance with the Christian doctrine against injuring others or taking life”.
September 22, 1955 동아일보 Dong-a Ilbo
Religious leader Moon given two years in the ‘Unification Church incident’ prosecution.
Following earlier report: The first trial regarding the ‘Unification Church incident’ started on the 20 [September 1955]. After investigating the facts, prosecutor Kang Seo-yong ( 姜瑞龍 ), recommended the following terms for the defendants:
▲ Moon Sun Myung (religious leader) = Imprisonment for two years
▲ Eu Hyo-won = Imprisonment for two years
▲ Kim Won-pil, Eu Hyo-min and Eu Hyo-young
= Each person imprisonment for one year and six months
▲ Around the same time, there was an uproar about the Unification Church at Yonsei University. An Byong-mu 安柄茂 (above), who was Chairman of the Korea Theological Institute (now Professor Emeritus) said:
“There was an active campaign to recruit believers at Yonsei University by a woman, Professor B. [Most probably she was Professor Yang Yoon-young 梁允永 who taught music at both Ewha and Yonsei universities.] She also came to invite me. I thought she was quite a beauty. I wondered about this new religion; why had such an attractive woman joined this cult? At that time she said, “Rev. Moon always talks one-to-one with women believers in the room. He talks in a high-pitched tone for hours on end. The woman then ends up becoming a fervent believer.” After all this, Professor B [Yang] was made to retire, and some students were also expelled at the time.”
週刊ポスト Shūkan Post October 15, 1993, pages 212 to 215 LINK
▲ Yang Yoon-yeong 梁允永 was a professor of music who taught at Yonsei University, and at Ewha Woman’s University. She was an enthusiastic witnesser from 1954. Guests were taught by Eu Hyo-won at her house, which was located half way between the Ewha and Yonsei universities. Kim Myung-hee also stayed there when she was pregnant – before Moon sent her to Tokyo where she gave birth to his son, Moon Hee-jin.
October 5, 1955 동아일보 Dong-a Ilbo
Church Leader Moon Found Not Guilty in the ‘Unification Church incident’
The verdict in the Seoul District Court trial with regards to the matter known as the ‘Unification Church incident’ took place at 10:50am yesterday the 4th in Court No. 4. The presiding judge Yoon Hak-no ( 尹學老 ) rendered verdicts as follows: “not guilty” for Church Leader Moon, monetary penalty for one person, and jail sentences for the remaining three persons.
◊ Verdict (With the sentences previously given by the prosecution in parentheses)
▲ Moon Sun Myung = not guilty (two years in prison)
▲ Eu Hyo-won = fined 5,000 won (two years in prison)
▲ Eu Hyo-min ▲ Eu Hyo-young ▲ Kim Won-pil
= Each detained in prison for eight months and suspended detention for sixty days in total (one year and six months in prison)
▲ Moon Sun Myung, with the followers who had been imprisoned with him, soon after their release. Standing, Moon and Eu Hyo-won (later he was church president); seated, left to right, Eu Hyo-min, Kim Won-pil, Eu Hyo-young.
Chong-hwa Pak said this about Moon’s 1955 trial:
“Because of his disturbing the social order with women in Pyongyang, he was sent to Heungnam [prison in 1948]. Thanks to the members in Seoul, who out of desperation committed perjury and frantically moved or destroyed evidence, [Moon] was said to be acquitted. But the facts had roots. He would otherwise have had a long prison sentence.”
Professor James Huntley Grayson, Korea – A Religious History
320 pages (New York: RoutledgeCurzon, 1989, revised 2002)
page 210: “In July 1955, Mun was imprisoned for gross immorality, but was subsequently released.”
page 211: “As one of the most important functions of the Lord of the Second Advent is the physical restoration of mankind, Mun selects suitable marital partners for the faithful and conducts sacred ceremonies of marriage in large groups. It should be noted with regard to the purging of physical sin that Mun has been accused of acts of gross immorality which are denied by church authorities.”