WASHINGTON – It’s one of the most bizarre incidents to take place on Capitol Hill in a long time: A ceremony honoring the very controversial Rev. Sun Myung Moon (search), with at least a dozen lawmakers in attendance.
During the ceremony, a crown was placed on Moon’s head and he said he would save the souls of everyone on Earth, just as he had done for notorious dictators Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin — whom the reverend said were reborn because of his teachings.
The incendiary reverend has conducted mass weddings for his followers, claimed that the Jews started the Holocaust by betraying Jesus Christ and was sentenced to 18 months in jail in the 1980s for tax fraud.
The scene unfolded in the Dirksen Senate Office Building (search) March 23 before a bipartisan crowd of senators and congressmen. Many have since said they were misled about what would happen during the ceremony, which apparently was billed as a reception to honor the Washington Times — a newspaper owned by Moon.
Many of the lawmakers who were in attendance are saying Moon’s presence at the event took them by surprise. One member even denied being there at all until a Capitol Hill newspaper produced photos of the person at the event. And no one on the Hill is taking responsibility for approving Moon’s appearance.
Go to the video box at the top of this story to watch a report by Fox News' Steve Centanni and Greg Kelly.