Myrian Craft (left), HWPL General Director of Publicity Media and Elizabeth Doyne, HWPL General Director of International Law Department. Photo by Noah Washington/The Atlanta Voice

SEOUL, South Korea — Monday, Sept. 18 is day one of The Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL) World Peace Summit. Through its efforts to promote peace, HWPL is inviting representatives and leaders from various walks of life, transcending race, religions, and creeds to initiate conversations towards the quest for peace with their annual World Peace Summit in Seoul, South Korea.

Two of those representatives come from Atlanta, including Myrian Craft, HWP General Director of Publicity Media and Elizabeth Doyne, HWPL’s General Director of International Law Department. Both come to Seoul from the HWPL Atlanta Chapter and are attending  the summit operating as Protocol Officers, guides and regulators for all the incoming attendees.

But how can a Black man living in America champion peace where unjust killings of Black men such as the murder of George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, and more recently 16-Year-old Ralph Yarl, continue to take place.  Craft says he joined HWPL wanting to make a cultural change.

“We’re now going beyond just our own religion, race or ethnicity,” Craft said. “We are looking past my color, who I am as a person, how am I treating you as a person. I think it’s now about where we are at, because we’re all here because of what suits us all, peace.”

In pursuit of this global peace Craft’s sentiments beautifully align with HWPL’s efforts.

“Bringing everyone to that high understanding and high treatment of how we actually should have been treating each other from the get go from the first place,” he said.

Doyne, also from Atlanta, shares her perspective as someone representing HWPL’s work in the United States and about the once primarily Korean-centric organization taking center stage on a global level. 

“To be from Atlanta and be representing the “A” and doing this work, it’s huge, because we’re kind of also representing America too,” Doyne said.

Doyne believes it is important to have Americans have a seat at the table, as it signifies a broader acceptance of the organization’s mission. She also touched upon the unique role of HWPL in allowing its members, particularly from the south, to actively contribute to shaping the blueprint for peace in their own regions, tackling hidden cultural and societal issues.

“Even our branch coming and representing is a shock for most to see here,” she said. “For HWPL to know that people in America actually believe in this or even being at the point where they want to do the work  is huge for us, because Atlanta is a perfect place to start the peace work,” Doyne said.

But just because a plan for peace works somewhere that doesn’t mean it can work everywhere, she says.

“The thing about HWPL is that they’re not sitting back telling us what to work on and what to do. When we agreed to work for this organization, we started creating the blueprint for peace in our state and in our country, step by step by ourselves,” Doyne continued.