Moon's Mass Marriages: An Update

Love, Self

The Unification Church will have some big changes in the coming years.

The Washington Post has a fascinating story about the children of divinely matched members of the Unification Church (also known as the Moonies, which may be a slur). First, a little prologue.

The Unification Church was founded by a fellow named Sun Myung Moon in what is now South Korea. They believe in the redemption of all people (good, bad, alive and dead), that we should all be nice to each other and that a man named Sun Myung Moon is the second coming of the J-Man . The movement paralleled various hippie goings-on during the 1960s and 1970s with a focus on peace and spirituality (but not free love or Ultimate Frisbee). Because Reverend Moon had been entrusted with copious amounts of authority and trust, he was tasked (or tasked himself, it's a touch unclear) with choosing marital matches for members of his flock (a sort of voluntary arranged marriage). One of these mass weddings went down at New York's Madison Square Garden in 1982. Read: What Arranged Marriage Can Teach Us

Cut to the modern day (and past tax-evasion convictions, allegations of brainwashing and accusations of anti-Semitism and homophobia), where the many children of these church members are now the metaphorical and literal inheritors of the movement. Since the Reverend Sun Myung Moon is 90 years old, the church recently had to make some changes to survive the eventual (probable) death of its messiah. One of these changes includes allowing parents to hook their kids up with a spouse (within the Church, doubtless). Up until recently, the Rev. Moon personally saw to each match. But this new technique has given rise to websites catering to parents looking for someone to marry their son or daughter. Indian parents have been using matchmaking sites for some time, but they have a dowry at stake, rather than the future of a new-fangled Christian sect/ venture.