A most colorful and memorable celebration was held in Tempe, Arizona, to honor the 25th anniversary of the founding of Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP). Under the title “Igniting a Culture of Heart: From Local to Global,” the May 20, 2017, event included the successful launch of the Global Women’s Peace Network in Arizona and the HerStory Awards 2017.
Around 220 women of all ages and some husbands filled the banquet hall of the Embassy Suites Hotel in Tempe to celebrate, be educated, be uplifted, and experience the Culture of Heart.
The very diverse program consisted of professional/spiritual women speakers telling their deep stories of overcoming obstacles and self-doubt, seeing their divine value, and making a difference in the lives of others for the sake of peace. Among them, Ms. InHaa Namvula, described her experience of the horror of the civil war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and of fleeing that nation as a refugee at five years of age. Stunning cultural performances, such as the famous Mexican dance group Rascapetatiando Dance Company, solo singers, and other performers uplifted everyone and created the perfect energy and environment for the inauguration of the Global Women’s Peace Network and the HerStory awards.
The following ladies received the HerStory Awards on that day:
- Ms. Ann Meyers Drysdale, a legendary basketball player, former member of the U.S. Olympic Committee, former president and general manager of the Phoenix Mercury, former vice president of the Phoenix Suns, and current vice president of the Phoenix Mercury WNBA basketball team;
- Ms. Mai Lee, owner of a Vietnamese radio station and Vietnamese lifestyle magazine, who offered to partner with us and the Asian Women’s Club of Arizona;
- Ms. Sarah Cheriyan, the founder of Mizpah Ministries, which operates an orphanage and schools for children in India and a livelihood education center for women;
- Ms. Fleur Magbanua-Mansur, the owner of Home-Health Agency, editor and publisher of F Magazine.
WFWP USA Vice President Katarina Connery eloquently introduced WFWP, based on the theme of the Culture of Heart. WFWP USA President Angelika Selle introduced the Global Women’s Peace Network, its purpose, and the co-founders’ heart and vision. She spoke from her own heart to ignite the vision in the audience. Then she showed a 10-minute video on the depth and breadth of WFWP International and WFWP USA.
When it was time to sign the official proclamation, it was as if electricity had hit the room. In addition to the women leaders who had been selected to sign the poster, a surge of women and men came forward to also sign their names in support of this very important project to make peace a reality both globally and locally.
Two women who already had been partnering with WFWP were recognized and given the Global Women’s Peace Network Partnership Award: Mrs. Aimmee Kodachian, the host, executive director and producer of AKExperts TV Productions in Las Vegas, and Elizabeth Inganamort, the founder of the Falcons Guard Center, which helps homeless children.
The program ended with a call to action to support this organization and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon’s work for peace by becoming a member of WFWP. Raffles, a silent auction, and joyful dancing (with Mr. Luke Higuchi in the lead) ended the program.
It was an unforgettable program and experience for all of us, as we felt the presence of Heavenly Parent and WFWP’s Co-Founders so very strongly. Most everyone came away with new hope for the future and a better understanding of women’s important role and responsibility to bring healing and positive change to the world. WFWP membership was promoted on several occasions, and many women joined.
I am grateful for our WFWP Arizona chair, Rhia Luz, and her team, who laid the foundation for all of this to manifest!
Here are some of the most memorable comments:
- “I have never attended an event that moved my emotions at all, and I was moved so deeply today, even to tears, when hearing the stirring testimonies and stories of the women speakers.”
- “It was a wonderful initiative with so much promise. ... Of course, good news for Arizona. The awardee selections were outstanding, versatile, and constituted a global projection of women. The community support behind this event gave it much credit.”
- “Rhia and the whole team did a great job! The venue was beautiful, the food was delectable, and the presentations were superb! I don’t think there was an empty seat in the house!”
- “Nothing but love was in that room yesterday. Thank you for your dedication to everything that you do, Rhia and WFWP!”