On August 2nd, Tanzanian president Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete invited Pastor Ock Soo Park and Gracias Choir to his presidential palace in Dar Es Salaam. The meeting was arranged through the Tanzanian minister of youth, Fenella Mukangara who is an IYF supporter and had attended the IYF Ministers of Youth World Forum in Korea.
Upon meeting President Jakaya Kikwete, Pastor Ock Soo Park delivered the news about IYF and IYF World Camp in Tanzania. Pastor Park also offered the president a Swahili-translated version of his book, “Navigating the Heart: Who is Dragging Me?”
President Jakaya was a consultant on the publication, having thoroughly examined it and requesting it be translated into Swahili and distributed to the 1.5 million people throughout the African nations to read. The president also requested more images of different countries be included in the book. He was extremely pleased with the new edition.
As a nation, Tanzania suffers more from cancer than AIDS and thus, expressed a lot of interest towards the advanced medicine of Korea. The president promised to send his Vaccine Development Team to Korea to glean more information about its stem cell research and recent discoveries.
The Vaccine Development Team leader, who was also part of the meeting, could not hide his amazement upon hearing about how Unhwa stem cell studies were published in Nature Magazine.
After this 30-minute meeting, the president moved to a sitting room to listen to the music of Gracias Choir.
The choir sang two beautiful Swahili songs, Tanzania I Love Thee and Malaika (an Angel’s Name). The president happily sang along with the Choir and after the mini-concert was over, proclaimed that the Gracias Choir sang these songs even better than native Tanzanians.
Pastor Park, Gracias Choir, and IYF said their goodbyes with one final group photograph taken in the back lawn of the presidential palace, complete with a gorgeous ocean backdrop.
After returning to the office of the Minister of Youth and the Minister of Information, Pastor Ock Soo Park discussed in detail the vaccine development team’s plan for visiting Korea. Pastor Park sincerely thanked the Minister of youth for pouring her heart into IYF World Camp in Tanzania, and reiterated his request for the vaccine development team to visit Korea.
In addition, the Tanzanian Ministries of Information, Youth, and Sports signed an MOU with IYF. The national government has officially pledged their active support in helping IYF advance leadership and education for the young people of Tanzania.
The Minister of Youth and the Vaccine Development Team is scheduled to visit Korea October 1st, 2013.