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Youth Corner: 2012 Summer Regional Youth Training
On August 3 and 4, 39 youth group members of the North American region gathered for an intensive spiritual training at the North American regional headquarters in Rancho Santa Margarita for the annual Summer Regional Training. The annual Summer Regional Training culminated with the 38th Anniversary Ceremony of the North American region, held on Sunday, August 5.
This year, a third of the training session participants were from Canada, from Vancouver, Edmonton, and Montreal. The other 29 members came from Washington D.C., New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Seattle, San Francisco, Hawaii, Phoenix, and Los Angeles.
The theme of this training was to "Bring about the Spiritual Renaissance of Light in North America by Practicing the Art of True Light and the Divine Principles Every Day." Gratitude, which is one the most fundamental practices of a God-centered leader, was especially emphasized throughout the entire training, even at wake-up time, meal times, and while offering cleaning service in and out of the center.

The most important driving force of the training was to reform the soul, as the Spiritual Renaissance of Light refers to the revival of the heart and soul. For this reason, the training was designed to have strong emphasis on marching drills, which is a spiritual practice of letting go of one's ego and uniting with peers as well as harmonizing with the spiritual masters. The youth participants strived for perfection to march and move in absolute unison, not just in form, but also to unite as one in thought and spirit to attain higher heights in spirituality and energy, and to be ready to carry out the responsibilities of promoting a better society and to improve humankind.
To get the most out of the summer training, the youth of the region were instructed to embark on a unified training of giving Light to at least one person a day for 50 consecutive days prior to arriving at regional headquarters. If they could not give Light to a person, they were to give Light to something—their room, their food, their school, work place, plants—for at least 30 minutes each day. This training really helped the youth have experiences with the Light and have realizations of how they can improve upon their own spiritual practices of mastering the art of True Light and putting the divine principles into actual practice.
Throughout the training, staff members gave inspiring lectures to help deepen the understanding of the teachings. The regional director gave guidance on how to make progress step by step to raise one's spiritual level, and as a result of such efforts to become one to give spiritual salvation to others. He shared the Japanese proverb of "fall seven times, get up eight times," which left resounding impressions, motivating the youth group members.
On the second day, a staff member gave a study class on the importance of resolutely giving Light. His personal experiences really demonstrated how God reveals the spiritual realm to those who give Light and thereby inspired the youth to attain spiritual wisdom through the practice of giving Light to others. The youth ended the second day by studying the meaning of the Amatsu Norigoto prayer in a study class led by another staff member.
As this year marks the 38th anniversary of the North American region, the youth group received the honor of marching into the Main Hall of the regional headquarters before the ceremony began, for the first time in about ten years. There was a promotion ceremony held immediately afterward in which ten new youth group members were promoted; seven were in attendance. In addition, the youth offered an artistic presentation of creative marching drills, which were choreographed and rehearsed during the two-day training.
Now, having tools and experiences under their belts, the youth group members left the training fully fired up to continue improving their spiritual practice of reforming their souls for the sake of others. Furthermore, to keep up the momentum, the youth will embark on another regional unified training called "100 Days of Polishing," where they will work on fine-tuning their skill of giving Light and offering salvation to others.
With deep gratitude for Su God and the spiritual masters and to all those people who worked behind the scenes to organize the regional training and the anniversary ceremony, the youth group members humbly ask for the continued guidance and support from the entire North American region to work together to realize God's plan even one day sooner.

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