Language Sites
  • UCAN China
  • UCAN India
  • UCAN Indonesia
  • UCAN Vietnam

Japan's Catholics and Protestants commemorate Reformation

Joint service held in Nagasaki's symbolic Urakami Cathedral

Japan’s Catholics and Protestants commemorate Reformation

A Lutheran pastor prays during a joint service held on Nov. 23 at the Catholic cathedral in Nagasaki to mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. (Photo courtesy of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan)

November 28, 2017

Mail This Article
(For more than one recipient, type addresses separated by commas)


Catholics and Protestants in Japan have commemorated the 500th anniversary of the Reformation at Nagasaki’s Catholic Urakami Cathedral.

A joint service with the theme "Blessed are the peacemakers" was held on Nov. 23, hosted by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan and the Japan Evangelical Lutheran Church. About 1,300 Christians attended the ecumenical event.

Archbishop Manyo Maeda of Osaka and Lutheran pastor Rev. Joji Oshiba led the service and more than 100 clerics from both churches took part.

The cathedral is located in the Urakami district of Nagasaki, once a hidden Christian village where Japan’s last major persecution started 150 years ago in 1867. At that time all the villagers, about 3,400 Christians, were expelled to more than 20 locations throughout Japan until 1873.

Six years later, villagers returned and built a small chapel, which was later replaced by the Immaculate Conception Church of Nagasaki, at the time, the largest church in Asia.

On Aug. 9, 1945, the first church was completely destroyed by the atomic bomb.

In the joint service, Rev. Tadahiro Tateyama, president of the Japan Evangelical Lutheran Church, said, "It is an amazing grace that we can together commemorate this 500th anniversary of the Reformation here in Urakami."

"Today, conflicts are continuing in the world," the Lutheran leader added, "but even though this worship service is small because both of us are small communities, we can show a strong hope for peace to the world."

 

UCAN needs your support to continue our independent journalism
Access to UCAN stories is completely free of charge - however it costs a significant amount of money to provide our unique content. UCAN relies almost entirely on donations from our readers and donor organizations that support our mission. If you are a regular reader and are able to support us financially, please consider making a donation. Click here to donate now.
La Civiltà Cattolica
 

LATEST

Support Our Journalism

Access to UCAN stories is completely free of charge - however it costs a significant amount of money to provide our unique content. UCAN relies almost entirely on donations from our readers and donor organizations that support our mission. If you are a regular reader and are able to support us financially, please consider making a donation.

Quick Donate

Or choose your own donation amount