The following is an extract from an article in Far East, the magazine of the Columban Missionaries, by Fr Seamus Cullen who spent a number of years working as a missionary in Japan.
That the Japanese have successfully resisted the advent of Christianity is significant. Certainly no effort has been spared to establish the Catholic Church in Japan and the basic church structure has long been in place. But, the prospect of that church's burgeoning is rather bleak. I am now inclined to make the following analogy when I think of the commonly held attitude to missionary work in Japan. For centuries God has prepared and nurtured the soil of Japan, through the various religions (Buddhism, Shintoism and Confucianism). Then the Christian missionaries came along and, figuratively, spread a slab of concrete over this rich soil and sowed the seeds of Christianity on this concrete. Our own contact with Buddhism and Shintoism was inescapable and inevitable, but generally it was not a very long thing.
In Japan the Church is seen as a teaching organization. I think it is this basic thinking that needs to change. The Church needs to facilitate the experience of God, instead of teaching about God. This is essentially what Zazen is about. It is contained in the phrase from Isaiah which says, "Be still and know that I am God". "Knowing" in the Bible means "Becoming one with". It is Japan which has taught me that the Gospel incarnate in me is what resonates with other people, and enables them to discover God incarnate with them, and that they are made in the image and likeness of God.
Godric Timney OSB
Sunday 11 December the Evening Mass will be at 6.30pm instead of 4.30pm. The archdiocesan youth team, Animate, will be with us to lead a 'Youth Alive Mass'. Everyone is welcome - it is not just for young people!
Ormskirk Catenians Annual Clergy Night
Ormskirk Catenians hosted their ever popular annual Clergy night at Hurlston Hall. Attracting 30 local Priests and 35 Ormskirk Circle members. Bishop John Rawsthorne was the Principal Guest speaker, John originally from Crosby studied at St Josephs Collage in Upholland and was ordained in June 1962. John was appointed the Bishop of Hallam( Sheffield) Diocese in 1977. on his 75th birthday in 2011 in accordance with canon law John offered his resignation as Bishop of Hallam to Pope Benedict XVl but was refused and remained in office until official retirement in 2014.
(picture from left to right: Ormskirk President Tony Charnock, Bishop John Rawsthorne, Ormskirk St Anne's Priest Father Godric, Ormskirk Vice President John Gannon)
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