by Takada Keiji, Director
Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
We would like to express our gratitude for your precious
offerings and strong support of the survivors and the areas
affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake disaster,
which happened on March 11, 2011.
On March 11, 2012, the opening ceremony of the Rest
Haven, Emmaus Sasa-yashiki was held. The center was
built in the area called Shichigo Sasa-yashiki, which is in
the Arahama section of Sendai. This is one of the regions
directly hit by the tsunami, which our Tohoku Disaster
Relief Center (Emmaus) has been supporting. The fact that
we could open this Christian center in this area on the day
of the one-year anniversary of the disaster is truly amazing.
We would not have even imagined that such a thing could
happen before the earthquake.
It has been reported that the number of Christians in
Japan is very small, being less than one percent of the
whole population. More than that, the reality is that many
Japanese people do not wish to have anything to do with
religion. Please understand how great it is that a Christian
center, such as Emmaus Sasa-yashiki, has been established
in the midst of the disaster-affected areas through the
support of Christians, despite the reality of this situation.
This project was empowered by every volunteer who
came to the area. They have touched the people’s hearts so
deeply. It was also made possible by all the people who,
working behind the scenes, helped to send those volunteers
and by the people who supported them with their prayers.
Of course, our support center has itself been supported by
the love of Christ, and so under God’s leading, we have
continued our activities. However, as mentioned above, at
the time of the disaster, as severe as it was, relief activities
done by religious organizations were not so easily
welcomed. Thus, we have become “nameless Christians”
who were determined to bring light, hope, and love to these
people who had experienced such great hardship.
One year has now passed, and people we meet in Sasayashiki
say with a smile, “We were helped by ‘Kirisuto San’
(Christians).” Those are words that bring joy to our hearts.
Please continue to remember and support the center as we
reach out to the people. (Tr. BN)
2012年3月11日、“いこいの郷 エマオ笹屋敷”の開所式が行われました。津波の被災地 の一つであり、私たちの東北教区被災者支援センター、