Unification Church patriarch Sun Myung Moon leaves behind children who have been groomed to lead a religious movement famous for its mass weddings and business interests - if family feuds don't bring down the empire.
Moon, the charismatic and controversial founder of the church, died at age 92 at a church-owned hospital near his home in Gapyeong County, north-east of Seoul, two weeks after being treated for pneumonia, church officials said.
Flags flew at half-staff at a Unification Church in Seoul as followers trickled in, some wiping away tears as they wondered what would happen to a movement defined for decades by the man who founded the movement in 1954.
The Rev Moon and wife Hak Ja Han have 10 surviving children and in recent years, the ageing Moon had been handing over power of the church's religious, charitable and business entities to them.
But there have been reports of family rifts. One son sued his mother's missionary group in 2011, demanding the return of more than £15 million he claimed was sent without his consent from a company he runs to her charity. His mother's group eventually returned the money after court mediation. Church officials said the son, known as Preston, is no longer in charge of any church operations.
Moon's death could expose further rifts within the church, said Kim Heung-soo, who teaches the history of Christianity at Mokwon University in the central city of Daejeon. "There is a high possibility that internal discord will deepen," Kim said.
Over the years, the church amassed dozens of businesses in the United States, South Korea and even North Korea, including hotels, a ski resort, sports teams, schools, universities and hospitals.
Sun Myung Moon, who was born in a rural part of what is now North Korea, founded the movement after migrating south during the Korean War. He wrote in his autobiography that he received a personal calling from Jesus Christ to carry out his work on Earth.
The church's doctrine is a mixture of Christian, Confucian and traditional Korean values, emphasising the importance of the family unit but also encouraging multicultural unions. Moon conducted his first mass wedding in Seoul in the early 1960s, and the "blessing ceremonies" grew in scale over the years. He encouraged his followers to call him and his wife their "True Parents," and often paired up the newlyweds himself before the mass ceremonies.
Church officials said Moon's funeral will take place September 15 after a 13-day mourning period, with a massive new sports and cultural centre built recently on the church's sprawling campus accepting mourners starting on Thursday.