Sa Gil-ja (36 couple) on the 1955 Ewha Womans University Sex Scandal. She was one of the students who was expelled.
Updated November 25, 2020
▲ Sa Gil-ja (also known as Gil-Ja Sa Eu) was one of the first three couples of the 36 couples. She was married to Eu Hyo-won who helped to write the 1957 Divine Principle.
Sun Myung Moon was known as ‘Mun Yesu – Jesus Moon’ and the ‘physical Jesus’ in the 1950s.
Sa Gil-ja Sa – 1980, My Testimony (at UTS), pages 14-15 and 17
Early 1955 at Ewha Womans University, Seoul: “I bought many Bible commentaries, and read them but none of them had what I was looking for. Whenever I received expense money from home, rather than buying clothes, I would buy books in this area and try to work out my questions. Toward the end of my junior year I began hearing a strange rumor.
“They said there was a ‘Unification Church’ which would solve all the unknown facts about the Bible, and that a Moon Jesus had come.
At first I paid no attention, because this group said that Jesus would come as a man and I always had believed he would come on the clouds. As the days went by, however, more and more students in my dormitory began going to the Unification Church. Particularly my close friend Shin Mi-shik [later married to Papasan Choi, Sang Ik Choi] began going there and invited me to go with her.”
“Soon after I began hearing the rumor that Professor Kim [Young-oon] was going to the church, five capable professors, including Professor Kim, and the English literature professor [Choi Won-pok], were fired by the university. They had been told to choose between their academic careers and the Unification Church and had chosen the church. One evening after dinner I went out on to the field with my friend Mi-shik and as we walked I asked her in a whisper, “Is Moon Jesus really Jesus?” she had been walking a step ahead of me, but hearing my question she turned around and said angrily, “You don’t know anything! How can you be qualified to ask such a question?” Her attitude was so serious and solemn that I wasn’t able to say anything further. Only my heart was pounding. Soon I said, “Then I’ll go there and see!” My pride had been hurt by her saying that I wasn’t qualified, and I promised to go with her forgetting that I had been resisting her invitations for three months.
She smiled and said, “Then shall we go?””
Sa Gil-ja – June 1, 2001
“At Ewha University, hundreds of students heard the Divine Principle and were moved by it. But in the end only 14 stood firm and were kicked out. Professor Yang [Yang Yun-young] witnessed to Maria Pak, a very powerful woman. She was intrigued by the idea of a man who was “physical Jesus” and was revealing secrets of the Bible. She was brought to the house where Father was teaching at that time, but it was jam-packed; not even any elbow room. Father was poorly dressed and everyone was sweaty and somewhat dirty in her eyes. Finally, she could take it no longer, cried out in frustration, got up and left. Afterwards, Father was told who she was and he was upset with Prof. Yang. “To meet such a person, I need to dress up and meet them in a nice place such as a hotel”, he told her. Reflecting later, he noted, “Compared with Jesus’ manger and the stable where he was born, it was not so bad.” Maria Pak became one of our worst persecutors in Korea.”
June 1, 2001 Washington, D.C. Family Church
Sa Gil-ja – April 12, 1986
“Most of the 124 Couples are from very poor families, and the reason for this is very important for our members to understand. At the time the Unification Church was established, Korea was a very poor country. There were many children of poor farmers who had very little education, because they had to help their family in the fields. Every day they had to go up the mountains to gather sticks for fuel and carry them back down on their backs.
“In 1955 Ewha [Womans] University and Yonsei University started heavy persecution. Because of this the Korean government, all established churches, and all educated people started to persecute the Unification Church. People even wanted the government to stop the movement, to wipe it out. At that time we could not reach any high-level or educated people, so Father sent us out to the countryside to educate these poor farmers’ children.
“We couldn’t say we were from the Unification Church because of our bad reputation, but we could teach them basic things, such as how to read and write Korean or Chinese or English. Through this they became connected to us and some of these young people eventually joined. They went to 7-day workshop, 21-day workshop, and 40-day workshop. Then they left their parents and their farms and became pioneers for the church.
“Of course, their parents were very angry with them because they needed their children to do the farm labor. The children more or less escaped from their families. As pioneers they were very poor, so sometimes they would try to go back to their parents and beg them for a little rice or some money, in order to be able to continue their mission on the front line. But often their parents wouldn’t give them anything.
“When other church members established companies these members could work there, but because of their lack of education and skill they could take positions only as unskilled laborers at very low wages. Most have only a primary school education, and because of the urgency of the providence, they never had a chance to continue their schooling after they joined. All they had was faith in the Principle.”
Naked dancers join the Unification Church
Sa Gil-ja – 1980, My Testimony (at UTS), pages 26-30
The naked dancers were the group that Han Hak Ja’s mother, Hong Soon-ae, joined.
“Both the [Ewha Womans University] dormitory and the school tried very hard to stop us from going to [the Unification] church [in the spring of 1955]. One underclass student took a small wash basin, a towel and soap, and lied to the guard at the school gate that she was going to the public bath. She brought her wash basin all the way to the church. Among the three hundred fifty students in the dormitory, more than a hundred went and heard Divine Principle.
Finally the decisive day came. A teaching assistant sent by the Dean of Students came to the dormitory and said, “I want all of you who are going to the Unification Church to gather immediately!” When we had gathered she handed out a questionnaire with ten questions on it, The questions began:
1. Who witnessed to you?
2. Since when have you been going?
3. What is your impression?
4. Do you intend to continue going regardless of any punitive measures that the school might take?
There were more. Some students tore up the questionnaire and ran off. Others became so afraid that they began crying. Still others were simply wondering what to do. We knew that, just prior to that, five professors had been told to submit their resignations, and we had been expecting some measures to be taken against us students as well.
To the question about my impression, I simply answered, “I am happy and grateful.” I wrote, “I will continue to go regardless of the consequences,” and left.
The next day, fourteen of us were called to the office of the Dean of Students. The Dean told us, “The Unification Church is heresy, and they dance around in the nude. You mustn’t go there.”
We answered, “We haven’t even danced fully clothed, much less nude. If we wanted to dance, we would go to a dance hall. Why should we go to church to dance?”
But she said, “That’s not true. You don’t know, because you’re not in very deeply yet. If you keep going they will make you take off your clothes and dance.”
“We never experienced anything like this. In our country the freedom of religion is guaranteed by the constitution. People from many denominations and religions are students at this school. Why do you say that only students in the Unification Church cannot attend? This truth is the truth that will resolve Communism and bring about world peace. Dean, we would like for you to go there and point out to us what is wrong with it.”
Although we answered this way, the Dean maintained her position that we would have to choose between our school and our church. I should explain one thing here. At the time when people said we danced in the nude, I thought they were referring to the spiritual phenomena in our church whereby sometimes peoples’ bodies shook, or we would wave our hands in the air, or we would slap our thighs in time with the hymns. I found out later, however, that there had been a spiritual group in North Korea which really had danced in the nude.
They followed a spiritual woman whom they believed to be the new Lord. They believed that when this woman prayed over them they could escape from the bond of sin and receive perfect salvation and that like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, they would return to the state where they did not have to feel ashamed of their nakedness. To express their gratitude and joy, they once danced in the nude as they sang hymns. They were arrested by the police, and whipped severely. They were finally released after paying a high fine.
This woman who was called the new Lord had been a fervent Christian. No matter how much she prayed, however, she couldn’t find the root of her sin. She kept praying, “Lord, tell me the root of sin.” Then she received these revelations,
“The root of sin is not a fruit but an illicit sexual relationship”
“I bore the cross because you committed murder. Repent for this.” “When I come again I will come in a physical body, like the first time, and I will come to Korea.”
The lord gave her such important revelations as these which had never been told before to the established churches. From this time she testified to many ministers, but they all called her a heretic and threw her out. Finally she began holding worship services in her home with people who would follow her.
Because she would testify to the revelations given to her by Jesus, they began to call her “the New Lord” and their group “The Holy Lord Church.” She was beaten severely by her husband, a non-Christian.
She was persecuted by the established churches, and tortured by the police. Although she led a life of suffering, she was never defeated but gave much spiritual hope and strength to the Korean Christians, who were suffering under the oppression of Japanese rule. This is the group that Mother’s mother, grandmother Hong, entered.
She led a life of faith under this woman and prepared to be received by Father. When the woman died, her last words to her children were that the Lord would come to a place where there would be much persecution, and that they would have to risk their lives to follow him.
Following the Ewha University incident, Father was taken into custody on July 4 , and the whole world seemed to be ridiculing the Unification Church. During that period the family of this woman noticed an article in a newspaper concerning the doctrine of the Unification Church. The teachings concerning original sin, the crucifixion, and the coming of the Second Advent matched their own revelations.
They forced their way through the ridicule and criticism, and decided that the place where there is this much criticism must have the truth. The entire family joined, and continues to be active in our church today. All my questions concerning this group were resolved for the first time when I heard everything from the daughter of the woman who had been called “the New Lord.”
The university and the established churches thought that we danced in the nude, because they saw that some of the important points of the Divine Principle were similar to the teachings of the Holy Lord Church, and they thought that this church had come south and was now operating in Seoul. Once they believed that men and women were dancing in the nude, they could let their imaginations run wild. In this way people who knew little of our church were constantly misunderstanding and criticizing our church. More than anyone else, the ministers of the established churches took advantage of these rumors.”
Keith Pratt and Richard Rutt – Korea: A Historical and Cultural Dictionary
… in 1953. [Sun Myung Moon] taught that although Christ had brought spiritual salvation, he, at this time known as Mun Yesu, ‘Jesus Mun’, had brought the necessary complementary physical salvation. He wrote a new scripture, ‘The Divine Principle’, to be added to the Bible, and conducted some dramatic ceremonies, including the Marriage of the Lamb, when he took a very young new wife. He controlled every individual in his flock, conducting mass weddings of couples chosen to be spouses by himself, and instituted draconian evangelistic training for them. He was firmly anti-communist and soon established branches overseas, especially in the USA (where Mun lived after 1973 and there were 3,000 followers in 1980), preaching that full salvation came out of Korea. In 1982 he was convicted of income tax fraud. He then moved to Brazil, whence he returned to Korea in 1998. …”