Moon and Young-oon Kim both followed Yong-do Lee
Yong-do Lee was known as the father of the Korean mystical heretics.
The roots of Moon’s church in Korea lie with Yong-do Lee. The UC changed when it expanded outside Korea and Japan. In the early days it was partly modelled on the style and teachings of Lee.
"Some scholars understand that both the Olive Tree Church [of Tae-seon Park] and the Uniﬁcation Church came into existence, being influenced by the mystical Holy Spirit movement of Yong-Do Lee."
Young-Kwan Park. Major Cults, vol. I, (Seoul: Christian Literature Mission, 1976). pp. 30-32. 129-31: Young-Kwan Park. Major Cults. vol. II. (Seoul: Christian Literature Mission. 1984). pp. 35-38.
Moon went to the Jesus Church in Seoul, founded by Yong-do Lee, from when he was a teenager. (Michael Breen 'Sun Myung Moon, the early years' page 41. Confirmed by Dr. Ig-Jin Kim and other sources.)
The Korean background of the Unification Church
by Rev. Young Bok CHUN
There is no record of Moon or his family ever being Presbyterians. That claim has never been substantiated by a single piece of evidence. Perhaps it was always just a smokescreen. There is no record of Moon saying he attended a Presbyterian Church. He was married by a Yong-do Lee Church minister, Rev. Lee Ho-bin (Breen page 62). Several former Korean UC members have said that Moon and his family joined Yong-do Lee’s movement in about 1931-32. This was the time when Lee was at the peak of his fame, and evangelizing in the Pyongyang area of Korea, not so far from the Moons.
Yong-do Lee’s emotional sermons appealed to Koreans raised with shamanic beliefs, as was the Moon family. (Breen page 28)
Yong-do Lee 李龍道. His family name can be written as Lee, Yi or Rhee.
Young-oon Kim’s testimony:
As she was leaving America for the last time to return to Korea – she was suffering from cancer – she said: “I am greatly indebted to, first of all, Heavenly Father. No human person came to evangelize me; God Himself called me and revealed to me his deep and lonely heart. I am also eternally indebted to Swedenborg, Rev. Young Do Lee, and our beloved Jesus. All of them led me to Father…”
from page xvi of 40 Years in America, by Michael Inglis and Michael Mickler ISBN 0-910621-99-3
Young-oon Kim was born in 1914. She went to some of Lee’s revival meetings when she was about 18 or 19. Here are her words:
“One day on the way to work, I passed a large sign that spoke of a revival with Reverend Yong Do Rhee to be conducted through the current week. That evening I went to the large Korean Methodist church to hear Reverend Rhee. Though arriving on time, I had to squeeze in because already many hundreds were in attendance. Reverend Rhee was a young Methodist minister who was quite intellectual and also very rich in feeling. He had studied in a liberal Methodist seminary. As he preached I could feel the Holy Spirit through his fiery words. Yes, there was a judgment in his preaching urging everyone to repent. The hearts of everyone present were melted because his stern words were supported by an ardent love of God. Ministers, elders, deacons, doctors, lawyers, business men, teachers – men and women alike – cried in repentance with deep humility.
Reverend Rhee was a humble, meek, reticent man. But once he stood in the pulpit, he became a most eloquent, dynamic, fiery preacher. But there was nothing fanatic in him. Even after the meetings many people stayed and continued praying. During the night some would speak in tongues; some would prophesy; some would go into a trance. Such spiritual phenomena occurred night after night through the whole week of revival. Reverend Rhee was a man of deep prayer, passionate love for Jesus, and compassion for hungry souls. He would give all his pocket money to beggars on the street and then, without bus fare, walk home.
After Reverend Rhee left, the congregation which had tasted of the Holy Spirit craved more. But there was no one who could maintain the high spiritual atmosphere. Gradually Methodist and Presbyterian ministers, not only in my home town but throughout the country, came to charge Reverend Rhee with dividing their churches. Eventually he was condemned as a heretic and forbidden to preach anymore. Thus was he was forced permanently from the pulpit. A year later he passed away at age 33. But today, 50 years after his death, Reverend Yong Do Rhee is highly respected throughout Korean Christendom as an authentic messenger of God. He gave me a lasting image of a true disciple of Christ.
Deeply stirred by Reverend Rhee, I began a nightly prayer vigil at the church where he spoke…”
When she encountered Moon in late 1954, she may have felt something about him that reminded her of her earlier profound experiences with Yong-do Lee.