Why Japanese?

The Largest Unreached People Group (Joshua Project, 2005)

Only 0.04% Christians!

Annual Suicide Rate: >30,000

100-300 new religion registered each year (Operation World, 2000)

The battle is fierce, Time is SHORT! Please RESPONSE, Please PRAY!!!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Another Perspective to Matsuri 祭り

While you were worshiping on Sunday (July 25), I joint the Kashiwa Festival with one of their marching parade in the city, representing Tokyo University, my country, and most thrill was to represent the Body of Christ!

As I was invited to join the festival, I made some research: The Kashiwa Dance 柏踊り is a traditional Japanese dance with rich meaning that resembles the Kashiwa City depicting the life of the Kashiwa people. The Kashiwa Matsuri (Festival) 柏祭り is more of a city celebration that try to bring people closer rather than an act of worship to any God. Temples and shrines took parts in different time slots of the festival, just as how churches in the States take parts in their national parade. Community network spreads through these connections.

Although the matsuri 祭り was organized in conjunction with Bon盆、but there was also a clear separation of religion and culture in this festival. For example, the march that I joint, 柏踊り and 輪踊り, the people who organized it didn't want anything to do with the religion practices. The traditional dance stood alone without any influence or connections to Bon 盆 .

柏おどり The Lyrics of Kashiwa Dance

柏おどりはヨー 春来てひらくヨー
利根の舟歌 曙山の
花にいななく 放れ駒
若い柏の芽が育つ ソレ

シャン、シャン、シャン と打って かしわで シャン
シャン シャン シャン と打って かしわで シャン

柏おどりはヨー 夏来てひらくヨー
かわいあの娘が 合いの手いれりゃ
紅のたすきに 桔梗笠 ソレ

柏おどりはヨー 秋来てひらくヨー
ビルに 工場に 二人の家に
夢がひろがる 小金原
映せ未来を 手賀の月 ソレ

柏おどりはヨー 冬でもひらくヨー
愛の豊四季 メトロでつなぐ
雪の眺めの筑波山 ソレ

It become a fine line of how we could differentiate culture and believes and religions. As being Japanese, there is always full of thanksgiving to the creation and the "gods" seem to be exist in everywhere. The culture itself is rich of thanksgiving, which is good! The Lord had revealed himself in His creation, that no one could deny His glory.

The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. Romans 8:19

How could this come to past, if we, the sons of God continue to refrain our steps in stepping into the common lives of these people?

Many people that I work with in Kashiwa city are people in their 50's to 70's. What an urgent need to witness to them who Christ is! At least an open window to Christian Faith!

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