Calling a pastor, as viewed in Anne of Green Gables

by Kawakami Yoshiko, pastor Okubo Church, Tokyo District Editor, KNL Editorial Committee

Anne of Green Gables* was translated into Japanese by Muraoka Hanako and published shortly after World War II under the title Akage no An (Red-haired Anne). It has been a very popular novel, and since the life of its translator was made into a drama in 2014, its popularity has risen once again.

 

Originally written by Canadian author Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1942), this novel and its sequels include numerous episodes relating to the choosing of a pastor for the town church, ranging from hilarious scenes to ones filled with irony. In the first of the series, shortly after Anne comes to live with Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert as an 11-year-old orphan, there are a series of scenes in which Anne shares her frank thoughts about the pastoral candidates. Following the retirement of the former pastor, there were several candidates who came to be evaluated for the position. Shortly before the new pastor and his wife, Rev. and Mrs. Allan, are invited to a welcoming tea, 12-year-old Anne shares her thoughts with Uncle Matthew, who was the first to really take a liking to Anne after her arrival. His younger sister, Marilla, was quite an austere woman, and even though she had her own opinions, she did not express them—a point that shows the author’s superior sense of balance.

 

Concerning the former pastor, Rev. Bentley, who was retiring due to old age, Anne said that he has no imagination. However, he was described as one for whom most “had the affection born of long interaction with their good old minister, in spite of his shortcomings as an orator.” Following his retirement, Anne shared her feelings with Matthew, as she felt safe in being frank with him. “Since then the Avonlea church had enjoyed a variety of religious dissipation in listening to the many and various candidates and ‘supplies’ who came Sunday after Sunday to preach on trial. These stood or fell by the judgment of the fathers and mothers in Israel; but a certain small, red-haired girl who sat meekly in the corner of the old Cuthbert pew also had her opinions about them and discussed the same in full with Matthew.” (I recall being particularly interested in this as a child growing up in a pastor’s family and how there were various ways of choosing a pastor.)

 

So, 12-year-old Anne gives her evaluation of six candidates. “I don’t think Mr. Smith would have done, Matthew,” was Anne’s final summing up. “Mrs. Lynde says his delivery was so poor, but I think his worst fault was just like Mr. Bentley’s he had no imagination. And Mr. Terry had too much; …Besides Mrs. Lynde says his theology wasn’t sound. Mr. Gresham was a very good man and a very religious man, but he told too many funny stories and made the people laugh in church; he was undignified, and you must have some dignity about a minister, mustn’t you, Matthew? I thought Mr. Marshall was decidedly attractive; but Mrs. Lynde says he isn’t married, or even engaged, . . .she says it would never do to have a young unmarried minister in Avonlea, because he might marry in the congregation and that would make trouble. . . . I’m very glad they’ve called Mr. Allan. I liked him because his sermon was interesting and he prayed as if he meant it and not just as if he did it because he was in the habit of it. Mrs. Lynde says he isn’t perfect, but she says she supposes we couldn’t expect a perfect minister for seven hundred and fifty dollars a year, and anyhow his theology is sound.”

 

There are, of course, other people’s thoughts and opinions expressed in the novel, but I will omit those. Five years later, when the well-liked Rev. Allan and his wife leave for another church, there is another scene in which Anne laments about the next group of candidates to her close friend Diana. Also, later in the series, there is another episode in which a widowed pastor with many children, but who seems to care only about his sermons, gets remarried.

 

The author, Lucy Montgomery, herself married a minister of the Presbyterian Church of Canada by the name of Ewan Macdonald. Even though she had her own struggles with faith, in all of her works the main characters are all associated with the Presbyterian Church. Whenever she is just referring to “church,” it is always Presbyterian, and so whenever other denominations such as Methodist, Baptist, and Anglican are mentioned, the full name of the church is given, such as Whitesands Baptist Church. Likewise, whether the preacher at the various churches is a regular pastor or an itinerating evangelist is made plain, and the descriptions she gives paint a picture of the differences in church life and social standing of the congregants during that age in Canada. The time of World War I (1914-1918) is the setting of the last in the series, and thus the entire series is set in the context of the Presbyterian Church of Canada in the latter part of the 19th century into the early 20th century. Being fiction, of course, there may be some dramatization of the actual situation, but Montgomery depicts the kinds of ministers and spouses, along with the expectations of parishioners, during a time of more than 100 years ago. I wonder how differently it would be presented in today’s world. (Tr. TB)

___________________

*Anne of Green Gables published by YEARING, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books a division of Random House, Inc., New York

『赤 毛のアン』Anne of Green gablesに見る、牧師招聘 

赤毛のアンは、 日本では第二次世界大戦後に村岡花子氏による翻訳が出版され、今に至るまで多くの人々に愛読されています。2014年には、翻訳者の 生涯が、ドラマ化され、人気が再燃しました。

川上善子 / 東京・大久保教会(KNL編集委員長)

『赤毛のアン』

カ ナダの作家L・M・モ ンゴメリLucy Maud Montgomery (1874~1942)のアンシリーズには牧師招聘の エピソードが幾度も登場し、アン以外の作品にも牧師エピソードが爆笑ものから皮肉なものまで多彩です。

アンシリーズ初期、まだ10代のアンが語る牧師評は実に率直です。第一巻「赤毛のアン」で は、新任のアラン牧師夫妻をお茶会に招く前に、前任者の隠退後、次々と礼拝に訪れた「牧師候補」について12歳のアンがマシュウおじ さんと語り合います。Matthewマシュウおじさんは孤児のアン を最初に受け入れ慈しむ人です。マシュウの妹で厳格なマリラMarillaを、 牧師について思うところがあっても口に出さない設定にしたのは、作者の優れたバランス感覚でしょう。また、前任者で老齢のベントレー 氏Mr.Bentleyに ついてはアンに「想像力がない」(lucking in imagination)と評させておいて、「説教が下手でも、この善良な老牧師にたいして長くつきあっているうちに 人々はほとんど皆、愛情を抱くようになった」と説明しています。

そして彼の隠退後は、「人々は日曜日のたびに、つぎつぎ試験説教にくるいろいろな候 補者に耳を傾けて、種々さまざまな話し方を楽しんできた。その候補者たちは町の長老たちの採点に及第したり落第したりしたが…… おとなしくすわっていた赤毛の少女もまたそれなりの意見をもっていて、マシュウと大いに語り合った」と、心許した仲の本 音として描くのです。(私 は幼いときにここを読み、牧師のいろいろな選び方に関心を抱いた牧師館育ちです)。

さて、12歳のアンはマシュウを相手に、屈託なく6人の牧師を評します。

「リンドの小母さ んは、あの人(ス ミスさん)の 説教はとても貧弱だって言いなさるけど、あたしはあの人のいちばんの欠点は、ベントレーさんとおなじで、想像力がないことだと思 うの。それからテリーさんはありすぎるのよ。(略)あ の人の神学は健全じゃないってリンドの小母さん、言ってなすったわ。グレシャムさんはとてもいい人で信仰が深いけれど、でもあん まりおかしなことばかり言って、教会でみんなを笑わせるんですもの、威厳がないわ。牧師さんには威厳がなくてはね。あたし、マー シャルさんはまったくすてきだと思ったけれど、あの人は結婚どころか婚約さえしていないってリンドの小母さんが言いなさるの。(略)ア ヴォンリーにはけっして若い、独身者の牧師を迎えちゃいけない、信者のだれかと結婚しないとはかぎらないし、そうなればめんどう のもとだからと小母さんは言いなさるのよ(*)。(略)アランさんを迎えることになって、ほんとによかった わ。(略)だってお説教がおもしろいし、それにお祈りを習慣だからするというんでなくて、心からするんですも の。リンドの小母さんは、あの人だって完全じゃないけれど、年に七五〇ドルの俸給じゃ完全な牧師など望めないって言って なすったわ。それにとにかくあの人の神学は健全なんですって」。

他の人達の感想も物語の中に差し挟まれますが、ここでは省きます。五年後に、皆に愛されたアラン夫妻が転任する際には、アンの親友ダ イアナDianaが、 また牧師候補達が来ることを嘆く場面もあります。さらにシリーズ後半には、説教以外は無頓着な、子持ちの男性牧師の再婚エピソードも 登場します。

作者のモンゴメリは、カナダの長老派教会のE.マクドナルド牧師Ewen (“Ewan”) Macdonaldと結婚しました。本人の個人的信仰の葛藤は別にして、どの作品でも主役級の大人や子どもが通 う教会は、ほぼ長老派。翻訳で単に「教会」なら長老派で、始終対比されるメソジストをはじめ、バプテスト、英国教会等の他教派は「ホ ワイトサンドのバプテスト教会」Whitesands Buptist churchのように地名と教派のコンビで表現され、牧師か巡回伝道師かも明記されます。この時代のカナダでは、そうした表現で礼拝や参列者たちの、社会 層も含めた雰囲気の違いを伝えられたのでしょう。シリーズの末に第一次世界大戦(1914~1918)が登 場しますから、時代的には19世紀後半から20世紀初頭のカナダ長老派教会を舞台に、フィクションとして多少の脚色が入っているのか もしれません。つまり、モンゴメリが描く牧師(と 夫人)像 と信徒の期待は、約100年余り前のものなのですが、さて今は?

Our Need for Tradition and Reformation

by Wayne Jansen, missionary Tokyo Union Theological Seminary

 

It goes without saying that history shapes one’s identity, and this is definitely true for Christians. I was born to parents who were members of the Reformed Church in America. Naturally, I knew nothing about my family’s traditions or the traditions of their church when I was newly born, but slowly through the process of growing up with them, the traditions became a part of my religious persona as well. There are indeed people who have compared several Christian denominations before choosing to belong to a particular one, but in my case, I inherited the denomination of which I am a part from my immediate ancestors whom I respected.

 

The majority of the people in the area of my home state of Wisconsin were descendants of German and Polish immigrants and therefore were generally members of Roman Catholic or Lutheran churches. So I was a religious minority of sorts. One day in fifth grade, my elementary school teacher asked the members of our class to tell what denomination they belonged to. Virtually everyone in the classroom said they belonged to a Catholic or Lutheran church, but when I said I belonged to the Reformed Church, everyone looked bewildered. Many had never even heard of such a church, including my teacher. After that experience, the question of why there were so many differing denominations became an issue for me. For a child who had not yet studied theology, it seemed strange to me that there would be so many denominations if the body of Christ was one. For that reason, I felt that what was most important for me was not my personally affiliated denomination but whether or not I knew or was following Christ.

 

In 1992, I was sent to Japan as a Reformed Church in America missionary. Knowing that over 90% of the Japanese people did not know Christ, I wished to share my faith with them so that even a few may know Christ through my witness. I was blessed with the experience of being introduced to many Kyodan churches in Japan. Most of the churches had fewer than 100 members, so I appreciated the family atmosphere they had. However, I remember thinking of how so many churches were made up of a high proportion of elderly people and a low number of children, so I became concerned about the future of these churches. The issue of what would remain of these churches in the late 21st century caused me to feel quite anxious.

 

Considering this problem, reversing the trend of waning membership is perhaps one of the most pressing problems for the Kyodan at present. While I am very thankful for the many traditions I have discovered in various Kyodan churches, I have become aware of the urgent need to focus attention not only on the desires of the people worshiping at the church but also on the nonbelievers and children who are outside the church doors. We have to ask the questions of why there are few newcomers and what would make people outside the church see it as a place of which they would love to be a part.

 

When considering tradition and reformation, we must first consider what things must be preserved. I believe those things to be the Confession of Faith, Liturgy, biblically based sermons, hymns and worship songs, prayer, and of course, fellowship in the Holy Spirit. All churches have different styles and ways of worshiping, but we must ask through prayer what kinds of ministries God is wishing us to partake in for the present society in which God has placed us. It is not easy to say concretely what exactly must be changed, but we must have a spirit of wanting to change according to God’s will to accomplish God’s purpose. This does not mean that we simply pray for God to support our ideas and plans, but that in prayer we open our ears to hear God’s voice so we can know how God wants us to proceed and what God wants us to do: in other words, focusing not on how we want to change but on how God wants us to change.

 

I am very thankful for the great number of brothers and sisters in Christ that the Kyodan has given me. Beyond the year 2020, I have a vision for a lively church working diligently to please God and accomplish God’s work in this world. Reformation is not easy as it sometimes means giving up things that are important to us, but it is necessary in order to bless the people of Japan and the world and to build a greater church. Let us pray together that we will learn to seek God’s will and put it first to establish God’s Kingdom in this land.

伝統と改革を求めて                           ウェ イン・ジャンセン宣教師

  人間には歴史がなければ、 アイデンティティもありません。キリスト者としても、同様な事が言えるでしょう。私はアメリカ改革派教会のメンバーであった両親の元 に生まれました。当然、生まれた際には、家族の伝統や教会の伝統については何も知りませんでしたが、次第にそれらが身についてきまし た。自ら教派を選択するという方もいらっしゃいますが、私の場合は両親の持つ信仰をそのまま受け継ぎました。つまり私自身は、様々な キリスト教の教派を比べその結果、一つ を 選んだのではなく、尊敬する両親の家の宗教が私の宗教になったと言っても過言ではないでしょう。

  私の出身の州であるウィス コンシン州では、人口の過半数がドイツ系やポーランド系の移民の子孫でしたので、カトリックやルーテル派の教会が多く、それ故、 私 は少数派の一員でした。小学生の頃、ある授業で先生が何の宗派に属しているのかと私達に尋ねました。生徒の大部分はカトリックかルー テル派であった為に、私が自分の教派名を述べると、初めて聞いたという生徒が殆どでした。それ以来教派と教派の相違は何であるのかと いう事が私の個人的な課題となりまし た。 まだ神学を学んだ事のない子供であった私は、一つのキリストの体である教会が多くの教派に分かれてしまった事に疑問を抱くようになり ました。自らの属している教派よりも、イエス・キリストご自身に従い、キリストを知る事がキリスト者の使命であると固く確信するよう になりました。

 私はアメリカ改革派教会宣教師として、1992年に来日しました。日本人の9割以上はキリストを知らないという事実を知り、自分の信仰を分かち合う事を通して、キ リスト者が少しでも増える事を願いました。日本基督教団の様々な教会に 出 会い、それぞれの教会の伝統を知る事は楽しい事でした。大部分の教会が百名以下でしたので、家族的な雰囲気が印象的でした。しかし、 高齢化している教会が多かったので、将来一体どのようになるのかという心配を抱き始めました。子供の数の少ない教会も少なくなかった ので、このままでの状況が続くと2020年以降の状況を思い描く事は怖い事でした。要するに、21世 紀後半に日本基督教団の教会はどのくらい残っているのかという事が気にかかるようになりました。

  この問題に関して、教会員 減少トレンドをいかに逆転する事ができるのかが、現代の大事な課題であると思われます。私自身は様々な教会の良い伝統を見、それに感 謝していると同時に、それぞれの教会内においてのみ喜ばれる伝統を越え、教会外の未信者や子供達に対し一体何を変えれば教会がより一 層魅力的な場になるのかという事を考えられたらよいのではないかと思っています。

  どのような事が不変のもの であるのかという事を先ず、把握するべきです。それらは、信仰告白、リタージ、聖書に基づく説教、讃美歌やワーシップソング、祈り、 そして何と言っても、聖霊にある交わりであるのではないでしょうか。各教会にはそれぞれ独自のスタイルや礼拝の守り方があるのです が、祈りを通して、 現 代の社会の為に神様はどのようなミニストリーを求めておられるのかという事を祈りの課題にしなければなりません。変えるべき具体的な ものとしての答えは 容 易には出てこないかも知れませんが、このような精神を持つ事によって、私達は神様に教会の適切な改革を任せられているのではないかと 考えられます。ただし、一方的に祈るのではなく、神様の御声に耳を傾ける事が最も大切な事であると思われます。

  日本基督教団の教会に、数 多くの兄弟姉妹が与えられている事を常に感謝しています。2020年以降に、主の御心に適い、生き生きとした教会を期待できるように共に努 めてゆきたいと思います。改革する事は容易な事ではありませんが、私達の為ではなく、日本と世界の人々が祝福される為に適切な改革を 考え始めなければならないのではないでしょうか。神様の御心が求められるように共に祈りましょう。

The Three Founders of Tohoku Gakuin

Foreign Missionaries from the early period of modern Japan who contributed to the establishment of Sendai Theological Seminary (currently Tohoku Gakuin University)

 

The Tokugawa clan ruled Japan for almost 250 years, a period marked by the exclusion of Christianity and the promulgation of edicts banning its practice. The period came to an end when U.S. Navy Commodore Matthew Calbraith Perry led several U.S. ships into Japanese waters and demanded that Japan open itself up to the West. This led to the establishment of the Meiji government, and that soon resulted in the removal of the edicts banning Christianity, thereby allowing missionaries to begin public ministry. Many promising Japanese youth gathered around the evangelistic centers that were formed around Japan.

 

At one of the mission centers, later referred to as the “Yokohama Band,” a 22-year old student named Oshikawa Masayoshi became a Christian. With his sights set on becoming an evangelist to the Tohoku district in the northern part of Japan, Oshikawa became actively involved in evangelistic work in Sendai. In 1886 Rev. William Edwin Hoy, a missionary from the German Reformed Church in the United States of America, arrived in Sendai and teamed up with Oshikawa to launch a small seminary for training Japanese pastors. The school was named Sendai Theological Seminary. Hoy and Oshikawa also helped start a school for girls, Miyagi Women’s School, which eventually became Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University.

 

Hoy was born in Pennsylvania in 1858. After graduating from Franklin and Marshall College and Lancaster Theological Seminary, Hoy was appointed as a missionary by the German Reformed Church in the USA and sailed for Japan in 1885. After founding the seminary in Sendai, Hoy and Oshikawa were joined by a new arrival the following year, Rev. David Bowman Schneder. Hoy was immediately burdened with numerous and varied responsibilities but was involved in many evangelistic activities, including publication of the English bimonthly magazine “Japan Evangelist” from 1893. But he also suffered from asthma, a condition that led him to leave Sendai for a three-month health furlough in Shanghai in 1898. After traveling up the Yangtze River to Hankow, however, he decided to begin mission work in Hunan Province. Resigning from his work with the Japanese mission, Hoy eventually settled at Yochow in 1900. For 25 years Hoy was at the center of a rapidly developing program of schools for boys and girls, evangelistic outstations, and medical work. His life as a foreign missionary came to an end at the age of 69 while he was on his way back to the USA.

 

Sendai Theological Seminary began with two staff members and six students. The school grew the following year, with the additions of Schneder and several more students. At that point (1891), as it added junior and senior high schools and continued to expand into a full-fledged school, the name of the school was changed to Tohoku Gakuin. A new school building constructed of red bricks provided a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere for both students and staff. (Appropriately but also affectionately, the building was later referred to as the “red brick school building.”) A library was also established in the new building and named after Rudolf Kelker, a treasurer of the German Reformed Church.

 

Oshikawa was actively involved in evangelistic activities in several places, so he decided to hand over administration of the school to Schneder, who became the second principal of the school. A few years later, following Hoy’s departure for China, Schneder devoted himself fully to educational work at Tohoku Gakuin, a work to which he dedicated himself for the next 35 years as he transformed a small private school into a Christian college. Furthermore, that Christian college eventually became the large Christian university it is today, a school with the highest number of students of any Christian university in northern Japan. It presently has 12,000 students, ranging from kindergarten through graduate school.

 

David Bowman Schneder was born in 1857, one year earlier than Hoy. Like Hoy, Schneder graduated from Franklin and Marshall College and Lancaster Theological Seminary. After serving as a pastor for four years, he was appointed as a missionary by the German Reformed Church in the USA. He sailed for Japan with his wife, both arriving in Sendai in 1887. Schneder began as a co-worker with Oshikawa and Hoy. His long term of service had its difficulties, not the least of which included the resignations of two of his colleagues. However, no doubt the severest trial he faced was the disastrous fire in Sendai in 1919, a fire that raged widely throughout the city and destroyed many school buildings. Though the situation may have looked hopeless to many, Schneder never gave up his attempts to rebuild the school. He successfully raised funds (especially from USA donors) that made possible the rebuilding of the school’s facilities within three years following the disaster. The three English words “Life, Light, and Love,” are carved prominently on the front and make up the motto of the school.

 

Rev. and Mrs. Schneder remained in Japan for almost 50 years. During this period, they returned to the US seven times, never ceasing in their labors to build international goodwill and to raise money for the expansion of the school. One of Schneder’s later concerns was the need for a college chapel, a dream that was finally realized in 1932 through a large contribution of $50,000 from one woman. The new structure was named the Lahauser Memorial Chapel in her honor. The structure was beautifully designed and is still used daily for university worship services. While numerous other buildings were damaged in the East Japan Disaster of 2011, it was unscathed.

 

—Professor Nomura Shin, Dean

Department of Religious Affairs Tohoku Gakuin University

「日本初期における宣教師の働きー仙台神学校(東北学院大学の前進)を設立した米国改革派教会の宣教師た ち」

東北学院の三校祖

 

 

鎖国とキリスト教禁令政策によって二世紀半に亘り日本を統治した徳川幕府の時代はペリー総督の率いるアメ リカの軍艦の来日によって終わりを告げた。新たに登場した明治政府は、1873年にキリスト教禁令の高札を撤廃すると、米国を中心とした国々からの宣教師たちが日本各地で公に福音伝道 を開始した。各地に出来た伝道の拠点には、志のある日本の若者たちが集まった。 

その中でも、早くから外国と交渉が行われた横浜には、後に横浜バンドと呼ばれる主要 な伝道拠点となり、ここに押川方義(まさよし)という松山藩出身の英学を志す若者がいた。彼は22才で洗礼を受けてキリスト者となり、伝道者を志し、まだ伝道が手薄な東北地方へ向かい、仙台を中心に布教 活動を開始した。一方、次々と来日する宣教師たちの中でも、米国のドイツ改革派教会からの派遣された宣教師William Edwin Hoy は、キリスト教伝道と学校設立を目的として仙台に赴き、押川方義と共に1886年に牧師を養成する仙台神学校を設立した。同年、女子教育にも着手し、宮城女学校(現宮城学院)を設立し た。

ここでW. E. ホーイについて触れておこう。米国ペンシルベニア州で1858年に生まれ、フランク リン・アンド・マーシャル大学Franklin and Marshall Collegeを、続いてランカスター神学校Lancaster Theological Seminaryを卒業して宣教師を志し、1885年にドイツ改革派教会より日本に派遣される。来日して翌年には、押川と共同で仙台神学校を設立し、続いて 同教会から David Bowman Schneder が来日して三人体制となり、仙台神学校と宮城女子学校の教育をさらに強力に推し進め た。ホーイは、広範な伝道活動を続け、1893年には隔月号の英文誌<Japan Evangelist>を創刊した。1898年に喘息の療養のために中国の上海へ行ったことがきっかけとなり、1900年に日本での活動を辞して、中国伝道へ赴いた。清国の湖南地方での25年間活動し、神学校、青年教育の向上、教会設立、医療活動事業とめざましい働きをなした。しかし、1927年の中国内部の動乱から避難して帰国する船上で、宣教に生涯を捧げた69年間の幕を閉じた。 

さて、仙台神学校は、押川方義を院長とし、ホーイを副院長として、6名の学生で出発したが、翌年シュネーダーが加わり、徐々に学生数を増やし、6年後の1891年には「東北学院」と改称し、神学部以外にも、中等部、高等部を設置し、次々と教育制度を整え、学校体制 を整えた。同年には南町通りに、「赤レンガ校舎」と親しまれる洋風の煉瓦造りの校舎が完成した。内部には、ドイツ改革派教会の外国伝 道局財務R・ケルカーの名に因む有力な図書室も設けられた。後に詩人・文学者として著名な島崎藤村が作文の教師として赴任したのもこ の頃である。

押川方義は伝道活動を広げ、各地へと赴き、1891年に院長を辞して、シュネーダーに学校教育を託した。シュネーダーが第二代院長として就任し、さらに、 ホーイが1900年に中国伝道へ向かうと、シュネーダーは、さらに35年間東北学院に在職し、東北学院を私塾的な教育機関からキリスト教主義教育機関に育て上げた。今日では12,000人の学生を有する幼児教育から大学院教育まで行う、私立では、東北随一の学生数をもつキリスト教学校と なっている。

D. B. シュネーダーの生涯についても、ここで触れておこう。シュネーダーは、ホーイよりも一年早くペンシルベニ ア州に生まれ、教育も同じく、フランクリン・アンド・マーシャル大学を、続いてランカスター神学校を卒業したが、4年間牧師として働 いた後、妻と共に宣教師として日本に赴いた。1887年に来仙し、前年に開校した仙台神学校の教育に押川、ホーイらと携わった。シュネーダーは、二人が去った 後に、幾多の試練を克服し、東北学院の発展に尽力した。その中でも最大の試練は、新校舎や寄宿舎が完成した後に、1919年に起きた仙台大火であった。仙台は空前の大火に襲われ、東北学院の諸施設も焼失し、すべての努力が消え 去るほどの悲嘆の中に置かれたが、シュネーダー院長は、自ら先頭に立って再建に奔走した。その結果、学内外の広い募金活動を得て、3年後の1922(大正11)年には新校舎が完成した。正面にはLIFE  LIGHT  LOVEの3語が刻まれ、これは3L精神と呼ばれ、 その後の学院の建学の精神として親しまれることになった。

シュネーダー夫妻は、滞日50年の間に7回帰米し、日米間の国際親善、および学院の教育施設拡充のための資金募集に尽力した。さらに院長は、学院 のキリスト教教育のために学校教会設立の必要を痛感していたが、ラーハウザー女史から得た5万ドルの献金を基に、南六軒丁に礼拝堂を建設した。この礼拝堂は、2011年の東日本大震災にも耐え、今日もラーハウザー記念礼拝堂として毎日の大学礼拝で用いられている。

 

東北学院大学 宗教部長 文学部教授 野村 信

Message from the General Secretary: 20th Anniversary of the Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake Observed in Kobe

There are several anniversaries that the Kyodan cannot and must not forget.  One of them is the Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake that struck early on the morning of Jan. 17, 1995. So this past Jan. 17 was the 20th anniversary of that tragic event.  The Kyodan’s Hyogo District held a memorial service that evening at Kobe Eiko Church, which was totally destroyed during the earthquake and rebuilt as a beautiful church in the years immediately following.

 

The 350 worshipers listened to the call to worship from Jonah 2:6: “To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit.”  It was a time of remembrance for the 6,434 lives that were lost, including more than 500 children, as the people contemplated that event.

 

Miyamoto Makiko, a member of Koto Church in Nishinomiya, gave a message entitled, “Continuing to grapple with it in the midst of encounters.” She told of the many experiences she had as a volunteer in the months following the earthquake as a member of the support group for handicapped children affected by the earthquake.  She also then described her gratefulness for being able to utilize these experiences in helping mothers facing similar suffering following the East Japan Disaster and the accompanying nuclear accident.

 

As I recall, on the fifth anniversary of the 1995 earthquake, Hyogo District made this statement in a report on its mission as an affected district: “We believe that the God of history, who has revealed himself in Jesus Christ, has stood with us during this disaster.  As we face the realities of the aftermath of the earthquake, our efforts have been based on the realization that ‘without the rebuilding of the local community, the restoration of the local church is not possible,’ and so we view this as our response of faith as we stand before God.”

 

Immediately following this 20th anniversary memorial service, Hyogo District Moderator Sugane Nobuhiko expressed in his greetings the stance of the district towards the future. “During this past year of 2014, we need to be cognizant of the fact that 40 people among those still living in the temporary housing facilities set up after the quake died lonely deaths, so we should not think of this 20th anniversary as a closure.  We need to continue to extend the hand of support to those still suffering, with no sense that this episode is now simply a thing of the past.”

 

In this land of frequent natural disasters, the Kyodan has had to deal with the aftermath of several earthquakes in recent years. Since the Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995, the Niigata Chuetsu Earthquake occurred on Oct. 23, 2004, the Noto Peninsula Earthquake on March 25, 2007, the Niigata Chuetsu Offshore Earthquake on July 16, 2007, and of course, the East Japan Disaster on March 11, 2011.  In each of these situations, the Kyodan has rallied behind those affected, conducting fund drives to help with rebuilding and offering support in the pain and suffering of the people affected. This has particularly been so in the relief efforts following the East Japan Disaster, when the earthquake and tsunami were accompanied by a nuclear catastrophe, with its ongoing threat that has no clear resolution in view.  Nevertheless, the Kyodan’s Tohoku District Nuclear Disaster Relief Task Force “Izumi,” the current response, will be formally ending its nationwide funding campaign at the end of March 2015 and phasing out its other activities in the Sendai, Ishinomaki, and Kamawishi areas by the end of March 2017. (Tr. TB)

 

—Nagasaki Tetsuo, general secretary

日本基督教団には、忘れられないというより忘れてはならないいくつかの「記念の日」がある。去る1月17日は、1995年のその日の早朝襲った「兵庫県南部大地震」の20周年に当たる日であった。その夜、教団兵庫教区は、この記念の日に当たり、追悼礼拝をあの地震で跡形無く瓦解し、それを何 年もかけて見事再建した神戸栄光教会を会場として主催した。

 集まった350名の礼拝者は、招詞「わたしは山々の基まで、地の底まで沈み、地はわたしの上に永久に扉を閉ざす。しかし、我が神、主よあ なたは命を滅びの 穴から引き上げてくださった」(ヨナ書二章七節)に耳そばだてた。御 詞によって、亡くなった子ども五百人以上を含む6434人の命を忍んで厳粛にさ れ、あの大地震が引き起こした出来事を思い起こしたのである。

 説教をした宮本真希子氏は、「出会いの中で問 われ続けて」と題して行い、震災直後から「被災『生涯』児・者支援の会」員としての働きを通じて、ボランテアの人々との出会いと、東 日本大震災の原発事故によって引き起こされている苦しむ母親たちとの出会いを豊かな恵みとして受け止め、感謝して語った。

 思えば、兵庫教区は、「被災教区の震災五年目の宣教にあたっての告白」の中で、「わたしたちは、イエス・キリストにおい て歴史に掲示された神は、被災のただ中にも臨在されていることを信じる。-わたしたちが被災の現実の中で、『地域の再生なくして、教 会の復興はありえない』として歩んで来たことが、神の前に立つわたしたちの信仰の応答である」と告白としている。この日、菅根信彦議 長は礼拝後の 挨拶で、「兵庫教区は、昨年2014年一年間だけで架設住宅で孤独死40人の方のことを覚えても、20周年を切れ目とは思えず、またこれを過去のことと切れ目をつけない で、引き続き救援の手を休めることはしない」と語って、今後の教区の姿勢を明らかにした。

 自然災害の多いこの国土において日本基督教団は、 兵庫県南部大地震以降、新潟中越地震(2004・10・23)、能登半島地震(2007.3.25)、新潟中越沖地震(2007.7.16)、東日本大震災(2011.3.11)とたて続けに起こった災害に対して、主として礼拝堂・牧師館復興のために全力をあげて救援募金を献げ、その痛みと困難に 寄り添い、祈りを一つとすることが出来ていることを主にあって幸いとして来た。中でも、東日本大震災には自然災害に加えて放射能汚染 被害が地域に拡散しており、この復興は政府も目処がつかない状況を呈している。教団は、この案件を東北教区の放射能対策室「いずみ」の働きに委ねつつも、来る2015年3月31日を持って全国募金を終了し、2017年3月31日には仙台・石巻・釜石における活動の全てを終了する。(長崎哲夫総幹事)