Several of our sisters made a pilgrimage to Nagasaki from the 16th-19th March to attend the commemorative mass for the 150th anniversary of the “Hidden Christians of Japan.”
Around 150 worshippers attended the mass at the Oura Cathedral, a national treasure that was built in 1864, shortly after the Tokugawa Shogunate, which ruled during the Edo Period (1603-1867), ended its seclusion policy.
The church was built mainly under the leadership of French missionary Bernard Petitjean and held its consecration ceremony in February 1865.
A month later, a group of Kakure Kirishitan (hidden Christians) appeared at the cathedral and announced their faith to the priest.
After the shogunate banned Christianity in Japan in 1612, Catholics practiced in secrecy for about 250 years. They were believed to have been wiped out under heavy persecution before they appeared at the Oura Cathedral.
The theme of the retreat was based on John 7:37~ [On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me!].
During the two days of silence, the participants while watching an introductory DVD on the charisma of the congregation, talks and interviews, were made aware through the aid of the Holy Spirit as to their basic life’s calling.
We thank Fr. Hagiwara for his spiritual guidance and the sisters of the Koganei Holy Spirit retreat house for their help during the two days.
The Christmas candle service took place once again on Christmas Eve at Sakuramachi Hospital with carolers holding candles and visiting each ward. The patients’ faces shone in the light given off by the candles against the dimmed wards. It was truly an inspiring site.
Seminar in remembrance of MONSIGNOR VLADIMIR GHIKA, December 23rd 2014
17.00 Short movie about the life of Monsignor Vladimir Ghika
17.20 Monsignor Vladimir Ghika in Japan – Presentation by H.E. Mr. Radu Serban, Ambassador of Romania to Japan
17.40 Presentation by Father Francisc Ungureanu, Episcopal Vicar of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Bucharest
Date: Tuesday, December 23, 2014, 17.00 -19.00
Venue: EMBASSY OF ROMANIA, Tokyo
Language: English. Written translation in Japanese
In commemoration of the 70th anninversary of the founding of our congregation our sisters held a DVD screening depicting the history of its facilities for the intellectually handicapped. Our facilities in this area began with war orphans but gradually developed into the Fuji St. John’s Facility. Last year a new group home “Kiyose St. John’s Care Village – Nakakiyoto” and a day care center “Kiyose St. John’s Support Center” were opened. Following the screening there was a social exchange with the parishioners.
We are indebted to the parishioners of the Kiyose Church for their support to our home and center in the form of volunteers, etc. Furthermore, those using our home and center thank the members of the church for without their love and protection they would find it extremely difficult to exist.
We look forward to your continued support.
May God’s peace prevail amongst you……
On 26th October between 11am-1.30pm we participated in the Catholic Fuchu Church’s charity bazaar “Children requiring support for a brighter future” Proceeds of the bazaar will go to Pilipino children through the Child Fund Japan and to our own Fuji St. John’s Facility.
We were blessed by good weather throughout the day and there was a variety of international cooking to be enjoyed (Japanese, Indonesian, Korean and the Philippines). In addition there were handcrafted items, everyday goods, homemade cakes and sweets, drinks and fairy floss. At the St. John’s stall we offered a variety of handcrafted goods, including new this year macaroni angels, cookies, knitted items, a selection of cards and Hokkaido food specialities. Thanks to everybody most of the items were sold out.
The bazaar was a wonderful opportunity for international exchange and was a great success. We want to now start preparing diligently for next year’s bazaar and even finding some new things to offer.
We would like to thank Fr. Maurizio of the Catholic Fuchu Church, the bazaar coordinating committee, all those who served at the stalls and all the people who were so gracious as to attend. May God continue to pour out his blessing in abundance upon the Church.
This year’s St. John’s Bazaar was held on the 12th October and despite fears of an incoming typhoon we were blessed by favourable weather. Children enjoyed steam train rides whilst the adults could enjoy hand-made goods and cookies baked by various congregations throughout Japan. Residents of our own Fuji St. John’s Facility produced good especially for the event and it was overall a very good bazaar Proceeds will go the North Eastern Reconstruction effort.