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Author Topic: Missionaries to Japan  (Read 745 times) Average Rating: 0
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tangentdi
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« on: September 23, 2013, 05:01:16 AM »

So I've been looking into Orthodox missionary work throughout the world, and have really enjoyed seeding everything that is being done,
Especially in Africa and Mongolia. However I have also been searching to see if any missionary work has been going on in Japan and haven't been able to find anything there.
Japan has 128 million people, and only about 300,000 of them have anything to do with Christianity. And only about 30,000 Orthodox are present. (The same about as in the days of Saint Nicholas.)

Does anyone know about any Orthodox missionary projects in Japan?  I'm going to be going to school over there next year, and would really really like to know.

Thank you, God Bless.

~Tangentdi
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Arachne
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« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2013, 05:07:44 AM »

If you can read Japanese, the official page of the Western Diocese of the Orthodox Church in Japan is here.
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« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2013, 05:12:35 AM »

AFR once did an inteview with a japanese orthodox christian who described some of the challenges the Church of Japan goes through.

http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/features/orthodoxy_in_japan
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tangentdi
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« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2013, 05:17:41 AM »

Arachne, Thank you so much for the link, I read through the site, but wasn't able to find any information on Missionary work in Japan there, but there were a few links to individual church sites in Japan that I'll look through. Thank you!

Ansgar, This is a wonderful interview, Thank you for the link. (I've already added it to my mp3 player. and am currently listening to it.)
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tangentdi
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« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2013, 01:46:20 AM »

So over the past few days I've been continuing to search for Missionary efforts in Japan, and was happy to find a few efforts that are happening locally mostly in Hakodate. But so far I haven't been able to find much else on the topic.

     Does anyone know how to become an Orthodox missionary? I have long dreamed of going to Japan to teach English, and also translate Orthodox works into Japanese.  Anything would be appreciated, a link, a book, advice, anything. 

God bless,
~Tangentdi
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« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2013, 03:59:50 AM »

Be careful. One American went to Japan and they made him a bishop.
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tangentdi
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« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2013, 04:04:30 AM »

Making me a bishop would be like crowning a cow King. laugh
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Seraphim98
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« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2013, 09:38:37 PM »

The best person to contact at present is probably Fr. John Takahashi, presently attached to Holy Trinity cathedral in San Francisco. I think he was for a long time an arch priest …certainly a very senior priest at Nicholai-do Cathedral in Tokyo. He has written several books on the Orthodox faith in Japanese and speaks impeccable English.
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« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2013, 09:41:08 PM »

These days are most Japanese Buddhists or atheists?
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Seraphim98
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« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2013, 09:52:46 PM »

I don't know…at least nominally Buddhist and or Shinto for the most part. My best guess.
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xOrthodox4Christx
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« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2013, 10:07:53 PM »

I don't know…at least nominally Buddhist and or Shinto for the most part. My best guess.

Religion in Japan has always been confusing. The majority of Japanese people actually identify as being both Shinto and Buddhist. However, most Japanese would also say that they are irreligious.

Religion in Japan is seen as more like spirituality than religion. There are shrines everywhere, but not many monks for example. I also heard that they have weddings according to the Western Christian tradition. Religion in Japan is more of a cultural identity than a 'religion' and Japanese may or may not believe in God, but they don't have any 'devoutness' about them. Japan is probably one of the most secular areas in the world, so I don't find it very surprising.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHssQKsWumU
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« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2013, 10:41:45 PM »

The Japanese Christian population suffered great losses in WWII.
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« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2013, 10:06:44 AM »

So over the past few days I've been continuing to search for Missionary efforts in Japan, and was happy to find a few efforts that are happening locally mostly in Hakodate. But so far I haven't been able to find much else on the topic.

     Does anyone know how to become an Orthodox missionary? I have long dreamed of going to Japan to teach English, and also translate Orthodox works into Japanese.  Anything would be appreciated, a link, a book, advice, anything. 

God bless,
~Tangentdi

Well, a blessing from your bishop goes without saying.  Teaching English in Japan would be a great thing.  Most education programs pay you salary and housing and it would be a great way to get in the culture and see it for yourself.  Look into the JET program.  I had a friend back in college who took a year off in college and she loved it.  You may have to get a certification first.  http://www.jetprogramme.org/

Maybe do a year and come back to re-evaluate what you want to do.  Keep teaching?  Translating works?  Evangelization?  You'll know then with first-hand experience.
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« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2013, 10:49:34 AM »

If I may, a couple of questions: Do you have experience in teaching now?  Have you looked into what programs are in place for Americans to go to Japan to teach English?  Do you already speak some Japanese? 

Japan and its culture have been a study of mine for many years and a nephew of mine has taught there.  I know of a number of books that may be interesting or useful to you (if you have not already read them) about persons' experiences there.  The first that comes to mind is Bruce Feiler's Learning to Bow on his year teaching in a small town. 
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« Reply #14 on: October 10, 2013, 11:13:52 AM »

I'm sure 

Historically,

An Orthodox missionary was sent

To represent Orthodoxy to the

Japanese Emperor.
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« Reply #15 on: October 10, 2013, 11:43:24 AM »

I don't know…at least nominally Buddhist and or Shinto for the most part. My best guess.

It is often the case that people will be part of both. There is a saying "Born Shinto, die Buddhist". Births and other life events are often marked with Shinto customs, visits to shrines and the like. But funerals and commemorations of the dead are done commonly with a Buddhist temple and the "Butsudan" a shrine for the ancestors often found in homes.  There is a "Kamidan" which is a home shrine for Shinto.  

In between there are some who will add a "Christian" aspect to a wedding though it can vary.  The wedding culture in Japan is quite interesting and complicated in its own right, but it is another occasion that has a traditional Shinto aspect rather than Buddhist.

There are also "New Religions"such as Aum Shinrikyo and Folk Relgions/customs and more.

If I may ask, what books or materials have you read about life in Japan?

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« Reply #16 on: October 10, 2013, 11:50:39 AM »

I'm sure 

Historically,

An Orthodox missionary was sent

To represent Orthodoxy to the

Japanese Emperor.

 Huh  Have you read about such a thing happening with a date and names? 

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« Reply #17 on: October 10, 2013, 01:20:46 PM »

Japan is a pretty cool place as long as your familiar with their customs.
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« Reply #18 on: October 10, 2013, 01:21:59 PM »

Japan is a pretty cool place as long as your familiar with their customs.

Have you been?
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