Offering a Japanese-to-English translation of a news bulletin from Tenrikyo’s official website:
The day after the Great Tohoku-Kanto Earthquake on March 11, a special prayer service (onegai-zutome) was conducted at the Main Sanctuary of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. The Shinbashira*, Zenji Nakayama, led the prayer service on wooden clappers while the former Shinbashira Zenye Nakayama sat in front of the kazutori (counter).
The prayer service was conducted at noon on March 12 and the next two days. Followers from surrounding regions joined Tenrikyo Church Headquarters staff and students from Shuyoka and Tenrikyo schools (preschool through high school) for the occasion.
Prior to the prayer service on the first day, Hiroaki Yamazawa, Director-in-Chief of Religious Affairs, said: “There are many people who are missing or who are all alone seeking help in the disaster zone. May we pray so that the situation in the disaster zone settles and that as many people as possible will be rescued safe and sound.”
Further, congregations overseas responded immediately to this unprecedented disaster. Missions in Brazil, Columbia, Europe, Indonesia, the Philippines, Oceania, Singapore, and the United States all joined to conduct prayer services together with the services conducted at Church Headquarters.
Tenrikyo Mission Headquarters in America, Tenrikyo Mission Headquarters in Brazil, Tenrikyo Oceania Centre, and Tenrikyo Mission Center in Singapore are presently collecting relief donations. In this way, Tenrikyo followers across the globe are sincerely praying that their fellow brothers and sisters find some relief during this tragedy.
Translation of caption from original article:
A picture from Sunday, March 13: Followers from Tenri City and nearby prefectures gather in the Main Sanctuary of Church Headquarters to pray that the situation will settle as soon as possible in the disaster zones.
(Translated by TR Translation Staff. Click here for the original article in Japanese.)
Links to more information on the Disaster Relief Fund:
- Relief Fund for Japan’s Earthquake and Tsunami [Tenrikyo Mission Headquarters in America]
- March 11, 2011 Earthquake & Tsunami Relief [Joyous Fragrance blog by Hiroko Okazaki]
*Note: The Shinbashira is the spiritual and administrative leader of Tenrikyo. The current Shinbashira is the fourth person to hold the position. He is also a sixth-generation descendant of Oyasama, Tenrikyo’s founder.