【October 2016 No.389】Komyo-en Kazoku Church’s Unique History and Ministry

Komyo-en Kazoku Church is located in a national Hansen’s Disease Sanatorium. Of the 13 national Hansen’s Disease Sanatoriums, two are located in Okayama Prefecture – Nagashima Aiseien and Oku Komyo-en. Although Nagashima Aiseien is the more well known of the two, Komyo-en is actually 20 years older.


With only 13 such institutions in the whole nation, one might wonder why two are located in Okayama Prefecture. Oku Komyo-en was originally located in Osaka and was known as Sotojima Sanatorium. Likewise, the church was originally named Sotojima Kazoku Church. According to the Reverend Fukuda Arataro, visiting pastor of the congregation, the word kazoku, which means “family,” was added to the name of the church because the members had been separated from their families and many had entered the sanatorium under assumed names to avoid bringing shame to their families. Thus, the church opened its doors to them as a family.


When the sanatorium was destroyed by the Muroto typhoon in 1934, 187 patients, staff, and family members perished in the disaster. The government made plans to rebuild in the Senri District of Osaka but was unable to do so because of strong opposition by local residents. At the back of the 60 acres that made up the grounds of Aisei-en in Nagashima, an unused plot of about 20 acres was available where the sanatorium could be rebuilt. Four years after the 1934 typhoon, those patients who had survived were being housed in five sanatoriums across the nation as they awaited the opening of Oku Komyo-en Sanatorium.


According to records, in May 2015 there were 1,718 residents of the sanatoriums nationwide, with 132 residing at Oku Komyoen. (Currently there are fewer than 130 at Komyo-en, among whom 23 are members of the congregation). Roughly 80 residents pass away each year nationwide, and currently the average age is 84 years.


On Nov. 11, 2012, Komyo-en Kazoku Church celebrated the 100th anniversary of its founding. The small church was crowded with over 100 people who came from as far away as Kanto and Kyushu areas to join in the celebration. We did not think that many would come to such an event, but on second thought it was a 100th anniversary, and there would likely not be another such celebration. So the event far surpassed our expectations.

Our congregation is different from an average parish church because one day its ministry will come to an end. When the sanatorium is closed, the church will be closed along with it. Until that day comes, as long as we are physically able, we desire to continue our worship services and prayer meetings.


Currently, there is a pastoral vacancy at our church. The Reverend Otsuka Shinobu is serving as the interim pastor. Our Sunday morning worship services are led primarily by retired pastors and the mid-week prayer meetings have been led by Aioi Church and congregations in the central region of the Okayama District, for which we are very grateful. Since the spring of 2015, Kurashiki Church has been holding its prayer monthly prayer meetings at Komyo-en Kazoku Church, which has been truly an unexpected blessing.


For the past several years the Kansai Choir League of the Korean Christian Church in Japan has been visiting Komyo-en annually, and along with sharing their beautiful music, the members have joined us in playing games and other fun activities. Given that recently only four or five people have been able to attend the performances of their beautiful music (and last year there were only three), we sent word that perhaps this should be the final year for their visit. We began the event, thinking it would be the final one. But as we enjoyed our time together, something happened that changed it all. One person said, “I remember years ago when the folks from Komyo Kaikan sang and the folding chairs were all set up in rows. The names of the donors are written on the backs of those chairs. I was surprised to find my father’s name written on one of those chairs. He was a pastor and had donated that chair. That shows just how many years we have been coming.”


The Church member Hanamura Keiko, who had kept repeating, “This is the last year,” said, “Let’s do this again next year,” and everyone laughed out loud in agreement. So we concluded the gathering with a round of applause, agreeing to meet again next year. So they will continue to gather to rehearse and to perform. What a wonderful thing indeed! (Tr. AKO)

—Nanba Satsuya, member and Komyoen Kazoku Church From Higashi Chugoku District News, No. 160


光明園家族教会はご存知のよう に、国立ハンセン病療養所内にある教会です。全国に国立ハンセン病療養所は13あります。そのうちの2つが岡山県にありま す。長島愛生園と邑久光明園です。長島愛生園が有名ですが、創立は光明園の方が20年古いのです。全国に13しかないのに、なぜ岡山県に2つあるか。邑久光明園 はもともとは大阪にあり、当時は外島保養院と言っていまし た。ですから教会は外島家族教会でした。「家族」と命名したのは、家族と離れ、家族に迷惑がかからないように縁を切り、偽名で生きる 人の多い病者を気遣って、伝道に通って下さっていた福田荒太郎先生だと聞いていま す。

1934年の室戸台風で療養所は壊滅し ます。患者と職員とその家族を合わせて187名の人々が亡くなりま した。再建を千里など大阪府内で考えたのですが、地元の反対などがあってできませんでした。そこで当時長島の75万坪を使用していた愛生園の後ろに、25万坪まだ余裕があると いうことで長島での再建となりました。1934年の台風から4年間、生存者は全国の5個所の療養所に振り分けられて邑久光明園での開設を待ちまし た。


光明園家族教会は、創 立100周年の記念会を2012年1月11日に持ちました。狭い 教会に入りきれないほど、100名を超える方々が神奈 川や九州からもお祝いに駆け付けて下さいました。「どうせそんなに集りゃあせんよ。でも一応100周年だし、もう次はな いからやっておこうか」という私たちの思いをたしなめるかの如く集まって下さいました。

私たちの教会が、いわ ゆる教区内教会と違う所は、やがて閉教するということです。療養所がその任務を終える時家族教会も閉じます。それまで体力気力が続く 限り礼拝と祈祷会を守りたいと願っていますが、明日にでも「もうやめよう、これ以上できんよ」と弱音を吐いてみたり、「週報、また間 違ったけどまあいいか」と開き直ってみたりの現状です。

そして無牧(大塚忍牧 師が代務)の私たちの教会は、現在1か月に礼拝と祈祷会の説教者8~9名の牧師に来て頂いているのですが、日曜日の礼拝は隠退牧師を中心に、祈祷会は長く相 生(Aioi)教会や岡山中部地区の先生方が来て下さっています。感謝なことです。2015年の春から倉敷教会は「毎月最後の祈祷会は光明園で」と決めて下さったとのことで、信 徒のみなさんが沢山来てくださいます。嬉しい驚きです。

そんな中で、在日大韓 基督教会(KCCJ)の関西聖歌隊連合の方々が毎年来てくださり、美しい賛美と説教、そしてゲームなどをし て楽しんでいます。今年面白いことがありました。来て下さるのは嬉しいのですが、なんせお聞きする方が4~5名(昨年は3名)で、「あまりに申し訳ないから今年を最後にして下さい」と言いました。そのつもり で関聖連の方々もいらっしゃいました。それなのに、ゲームが楽しかったり、それぞれの一言発言の中で「以前は光明会館の方で歌ってい ました。パイプ椅子をみんなで並べました。それで驚いたのは、その椅子の背中に、寄贈した人の名前が書かれていて、牧師をしていた私 の父親の名前だったんです。そんなに昔から訪問していたんですよ。」と言う方がいたりで、「今年で終わりに」とイチバン言っていた花 村慶子さんが「来年もお願い します」と言ってしまって皆さん大笑いとなりました。みんな同感!という感じで、嬉しい拍手が鳴りやまず、互いに背中を撫であい、来 年を約束してお別れしました。仕事のある人たちが遠くから一つの教会に集まり、練習を重ね、遠いところを来て下さる。なんという嬉し い事でしょう。本当に勿体ない事です。

光 明園家族教会 長老 難波幸矢

東中国教区ニュース 160号より

【October 2016 No.389】Thinking of Scripture during Work at an Agricultural School

by Matsuda Yoku, teacher Aino Gakuen Agricultural High School


Typically, I don’t have a clear sense of the Holy Spirit. However, I feel it in my work at school. Isn’t it that warmth that wells up in our hearts as we work and pray together when we confront the problems that come our way? Isn’t this the power at work in the hearts of the non-Christian as well as the Christian?


Nurturing Life, Receiving Life at School


I am responsible for actual farm work at Aino Gakuen Agricultural High School, a Christian school in Mie Prefecture. (The characters for Aino mean “love agriculture.”)  This is a small school of about 60 students, all of whom live in the dormitory. Food self-sufficiency at our school is about 70%. We practice organic farming and produce most of the food we eat.


On our farm we are involved in all six areas of farming: crops, vegetables, fruit, poultry, swine, and dairy. We grow rice by using the aigamo (rice-duck) farming method, an organic process that utilizes ducks in the flooded rice paddies to control weeds and pests rather than depending on herbicides and pesticides, and fresh eggs and milk from our own cows and chickens are on our dining table each day. This causes us to reflect on our own lives as we realize that we are sustained by the life cycles of our farm products.


Every morning before breakfast, our students do farm work from 5:00 to 6:00. Then, after arriving at school, they participate in morning worship. Along with scripture and hymns, a member of the faculty or student body speaks openly from his/her own experiences, interests, or reflections on Christianity.


“The Bible says ‘Seek and you will find,’ so I want to pursue something.” “At our school I feel that something is missing when we don’t sing a hymn. I think we should sing something together other than the school song.” These are quotes from students who had never read scripture or sung hymns before coming to our school. As someone who grew up in a home with Christian parents, I must confess that somehow I thought the Bible and hymns were meaningful to Christians only. However, our students have taught me that they leave a significant influence in their hearts.


On the other hand, I also hear less than positive remarks about Christianity. “There is no God. I’ve never even thought that I needed God.” “I don’t understand it when the staff say they are praying. What they are saying and what they are doing is different. If they really believe in God, shouldn’t they be thinking more about us?” Our students are listening carefully to what we say, and watching closely what we do and how we approach them. Our task is not simply to quote scripture but rather to express our faith continually in our daily interaction with students.


Accepting Another’s Problem as Your Own


At our school, there are many times when prayers are offered. Beginning with prayer before morning worship, there is silent prayer before our evening meetings, and students’ prayers before lunch. There is also prayer during individual counseling.


Our students face numerous problems. They often feel lost as they consider their future and what their next step should be following high school. They struggle with interpersonal relationships among their classmates. There is frustration with school rules against dating, and many students struggle with relationships in their own families as well. As we listen to our students’ problems, we often feel at a loss for answers. At times like that, I suggest that we pray together. At that time, I feel something that has not come from me, but a warm and soothing force that brings brightness to one’s face.


“No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.” (I John 4:12) If we believe that God is love, I believe that the Holy Spirit works in the relationships formed when we accept another’s problems as our own. When I was struggling as a student myself, I experienced the truth of these words of scripture through the care of my pastor.


Faced with the problems of our students, I painfully experience my own lack of maturity. At those times I find support in this prayer: “Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.” (Psalm 51: 12-13)


With a renewed “steadfast spirit,” I want to be transformed from my inabilities. With this as my constant prayer, and as I continue to seek guidance from above, I want to be able to give full attention to each person I am with, to lend my ear, and to do everything that I can do to help. (Tr. JS)


From Shinto no Tomo (Believers’ Friend), May 2016 issue



聖霊につい て、普段から明確に意識しているわけではありません。しかし、農業教育の現場で感じています。聖霊とはお互いに問題を抱えて一対一で 祈る中に働く、生き生きとするあの胸のあたたかさのことなのではないか。

それはクリス チャンにもそうでない人にも働く力なのではないか、と。


私は三重県にある愛農学園農業高等学校というキリスト教主 義の農業高校で農場担当として働いています。全校生徒が約60名 という全寮制の小さな学校ですが、校内食料自給率はおよそ70% で、有機農業を実践しながら自らの食べ物を自分たちの手で育てることを行っています。

農場は全6部門(作物、野菜、果樹、養鶏、養豚、酪農)でア イガモ農法により育てられたお米や、産みたての卵、搾りたてのミルクなどが毎日食卓に上がります。生きた命をいただく、そして自分が 生きている、ということの意味を考えさせられる日々です。

生徒は毎朝、5時から6時の間に農場に働きに出て、朝飯前の 農作業をします。そして登校後、聖書を開き、賛美歌を歌う朝拝が毎日あり、そこで全校生徒と教職員の前で当番の生徒が自らの趣味や生 い立ち、キリスト教に対して思うことなどを率直に語ります。

「聖書には『求めなさい』って書いてある。だから、俺は何か を求めてみたいと思う」「愛農高校に賛美歌がないとさみしくなる気がする。校歌以外にみんなで歌える歌があるのはいい」。これらは、 愛農高校に入学してから初めて聖書やキリスト教に触れるようになった生徒たちの言葉です。両親がクリスチャンの家庭に生まれ育った私 にとって、聖書やキリスト教で語られる言葉はクリスチャンのみに通じるもの、と内心思っていました。ところが、クリスチャンではない 高校生にも少なからず心に残るものなのだ、と出会った生徒たちから教えてもらいました。

一方、キリスト教に対して肯定的ではない意見を聞くこともあ ります。「神なんていない。必要だと思ったこともない」「職員から祈っている、と言われても意味がわからない。言っていることとやっ ていることが違う。本気で神を信じている、っていうのなら、私たちのことをもっと考えていてくれてもいいんじゃないの?」生徒は職員 が何を言い、日ごろ自分たちにどのように接しているか、鋭く見ているように感じます。聖書の言葉を口で語るだけでなく、いかに日常に おいて行動でも示し続けられるか、日々問われる大きな課題です。


愛農高校では、祈りの場面も多くあります。朝拝の前をはじ め、夜のミーティング前の黙祷。昼食の前に食生活委員の生徒が自分の言葉で祈ることもあります。また、個別に相談を受ける中で一緒に 祈る、という時があります。

生徒が抱える課題としては、将来どうしたらいいかわからない という進路の悩み、クラスメートとの仲がうまくいかないなど人間関係のこと、男女交際を禁止する校則の中での葛藤、家庭での親との関 係についてなど……抱 えている問題はさまざまです。生徒たちのそうした悩みに耳を傾ける中で、どうしたらいかわからず、ただ頭(こうべ)を垂れるしかないことが多々あります。そういうときに 生徒によっては、一緒に祈ろうと声掛けをします。そのような場面では自分の内側から出てきたのではない、顔を明るくさせてくれ る、柔らかに温かく働くものを感じさせられてきました。

「いまだかつて神を見た者はいません。わたしたちが互いに愛し合うならば、神はわたしたちの内にとどまってくださ り、神の愛がわたしたちの内で全うされているのです」(Ⅰヨハネ4・12)とあるように、神が愛であると信じられるとするならば、人 の問題を自分の問題として担おうとする関係性の中に聖霊は働くものだと思います。私がかつて生きづらさにつぶされそうだった学生時代 に、お世話になった牧師が体現してくれた聖書の言葉でもあります。

生徒の抱える問題を前に、己の未熟さに胸苦しくなることの 連続です。そんなときこの祈りを支えとしています。「神よ、わたしの内に清い心を創造し新しく確かな霊を授けてください。御前からわ たしを退けずあなたの聖なる霊を取り上げないでください」(詩編51・12~13)。

「新しく確かな霊」によってどうしようもない自分を造り変え られたい。そう祈り求めながら、己を超えたものに助けを求めつつ、目の前の一人にしっかりと向き合い、耳を傾け、できることをさせて もらいたいと思っています。Ω(信徒の友2016年5月号)

【October 2016 No.389】Challenges Facing Japanese Churches in Germany

by Sasaki Ryoko, pastor  Cologne-Bonn Japanese Protestant Church


I was sent as a Kyodan missionary to the Japanese Protestant Church in Cologne-Bonn and arrived here in April of this year. In 2015 the church experienced the trial of having no pastor for a year but was able to continue the observance of worship services every week, without fail, because of God’s leading and the help of many persons, such as area ministers and persons from overseas who were studying in Germany, for which the church members and I are very grateful.


The Japanese Protestant Church in Cologne-Bonn is proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ on the German Rhine riverside in Cologne. The first worship service was held in a room at the University of Bonn seminary student dormitory and afterwards was moved to Cologne, where worship services and house meetings have continued for the past 38 years. Historically, it is an overseas, foreign-language church. Of course, the fact that a small Japanese group has carved out this kind of history is due to the Lord’s support, but the second factor is that the church is affiliated with the German Evangelical Church (Evangelishe Kirche in Deutschland [EKG]), the Rhineland Evangelistic Church (Evangelishe Kirche in Rhineland [ERiR]), and the Kyodan, which have been blessed through their Mission Cooperation Agreement. Furthermore, due to the fellowship’s regular combined worship services, etc., with the church here lending us a place of worship at no cost, the fact that our Japanese church on German soil is not independent has deep meaning. Experiencing the long years of unity in Christ can also be said to be a special characteristic of overseas churches.


In regards to the German religious community, which has offered us this kind of blessed situation, we have come to think that giving a witness as believers to the outstanding nature of the Japanese church, with its emphasis on “prayer, Bible reading, and offerings,” is the mission of the church built in this land. A few days ago, the pastor in charge of foreign-language churches in the Rhineland Evangelistic Church conducted a ministerial installation service, and I was very happy to hear many people say that they are learning much from the Japanese church. My work is a tiny part, but while witnessing together with the church members, we are seeking church growth.

Family members of company transferees and students studying abroad are at the core of most overseas foreign-language churches, and since transfers of church members are frequent, I have heard that church structuring is difficult. However, almost all of our church members are married to German persons or are making their home in Germany, so for an overseas foreign-language church, its situation is very stable and church structuring can be done. While we have fewer than 20 church members, with their God given gifts, they are together doing the best they can to attend worship and support the church, but from here on the existence of the church financially as well as numerically will be a serious issue.


At one time, we received financial help from the religious sector of the German state, but five years ago that was discontinued. Even in the church in the Christian country of Germany, which will be celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation led by Martin Luther, many people have left the church, and the church is weakening. Thus, the German church is in a very severe financial situation and unable to reach out to Japanese churches. Previously, we were protected even financially under the umbrella of the German religious sector, but now lacking this support, we have fallen into financial trouble. However, due to this very situation, the believers’ faith is being tested. It is a chance to come to one’s senses, and I think this will be a new challenge for several years to come.

At the same time, we must also realize that the time has come to return to our beginnings. Church formation is not we humans working diligently to evangelize and increase the number of persons; instead, it is the body of Jesus Christ that anticipates the leading of the planner of the foundation, Jesus Christ. For that reason also, I believe that if the faith of each church member is blessed abundantly, it follows that the Lord will work and make use of it. The Lord Jesus is going ahead and leading us through a situation considered ended, so we should not live as though we were walking a darkening path. Rather I am earnestly hoping for a walk that is taken while waiting for the sunrise. We would be blessed if you remember and pray for this small German church that will be facing future challenges. (Tr. RT)

私は日本基督教団の派遣宣教師として今年の4月からケルン・ボ ン日本語キリスト教会(Japanese Protestant Church in Cologne-Bonn)に着任いたしました。教会は昨年、牧師不在という試みの1年間を経験しましたが、週ごとの 礼拝を欠かすことなく守ることができたことは、主のお導きと廻りの教師やドイツに学びに来ている留学生などの、多くの方々の助けが あったからこそと教会員と共に感謝しています。

ケルン・ボン日本語キリスト教会は、ドイツ・ライン河畔ケル ンの地でイエス・キリストの福音を宣べ伝えています。最初の礼拝はボン大学University of Bonn神学部学生寮の一室で行われ、その後、ケルンに移転して、現在に至るまで38年間、礼拝、家庭集会など続けられています。海外外国語教会としては歴史ある教会 です。日本の小さな群れがこのように歴史を刻むことができたのは、主が支えておられることは勿論のことですが、第2の要因として「ドイツ福音主義教会(EKD) Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland」に属する領邦教会である「ラインラント福音主義教会(EKiR) Evangelische Kirche in Rheinland」と、日本基督教団との宣教協力関係が結ばれているという恵まれた環境であるということも言えます。又、礼拝場所を 無償で貸してくださっている現地教会との定期的な合同礼拝などの交流によって、私たちの日本の教会がドイツの地で孤立することなく支 えられていることは意義深いことです。キリストの下にある一致を長年経験させて頂いていることは、海外に建てられた教会の特権とも言 えます。

このような恵まれた環境を提供してくださるドイツ宗教界に対して、日本の教会の 素晴らしさ、「祈り、聖書を読み、献金をささげていく」という信仰者としての証しをしていくことが、この地に建てられた私たちの教会 の使命と思わされています。先日、牧師就任式がラインラント福音主義教会外国語教 会担当牧師の下に執り行われましたが、その際、日本の教会から大いに学ぶことがあると仰ってくださったことは嬉しいことでした。私の 働きなどは微々たるものですが、教会員と共にキリストを証ししながら教会成長を目指しています。

大半の海外外国語教会のメンバーは、転勤族や留学生が中心なので教会員の移動が頻繁な 為、教会形成が難しいと聞いています。しかし、私たちの教会はドイツ人の方と結婚されている方々、又はこちらに永住されている方が殆 どですので、海外外国語教会としては落ち着いた教会形成ができる環境にあります。10数 名の教会員の方々が、主から託された賜物を精一杯出し合って礼拝を守り教会を支えていますが、今後の教会存続は、経済的にも人数的に も厳しい現実にあります。 それはかつてドイツ州の宗教界から受けていた、金銭的な援助が

五年前に打ち切られた為です。来年はルター生誕500年を迎えようとするキリスト教国のドイツの教会でも、信者たちの教会離れが多く、 教会が弱体化して財政的に厳しい状況に立たされ、日本の教会まで手が廻らなくなりました。このようにかつては経済的にもドイツ州の宗 教界の傘下の中で守られていましたが、このことにより財政難に陥ってしまいました。し かし、このような状況だからこそ、教会員の信仰が試され、目覚めるチャンスであって、これからの数年間が新たなチャレンジの時となる と思います。同時にもう一度初心に立ち返る時が来たのではないかとも思わされています。 教会形成は私たち人間が努力して 伝道して沢山人数を増やすということではなく、教会はイエス・キリストの御身体ですから、設計士であるイエス・キリストの導きに 期待していきます。その為にも教会員一人一人の信仰が豊かに恵まれていれば後は主が働いてくださり主が用いてく ださると信じています。主イエスはもう終わりと思える所で先に進んで導いてくださいますから、暮れていく道を歩むような歩き方で はなく、夜明けを待つ歩みをしたいと切に願っています。このようにこれからチャレンジしていくドイツの小さな教会を覚えてくださり、 お祈り頂けると幸いです。ケルン・ボン日本語キリスト教会 牧師 佐々木良子

【October 2016 No.389】2 Missionaries Key in Okinawa Christian Institute’s Founding

In 1957, 12 years after the battle of Okinawa, the Okinawa Christian Institute (present-day Okinawa Christian Junior College and Okinawa Christian University) was born out of the desire of Christians in Okinawa who had experienced the misery of war to nurture a new generation of young people who would take on the task of building a peaceful island. It was the second university to be established in Okinawa, following the University of the Ryukyus. Its founding was not initiated by overseas mission boards. However, it could probably never have been established without the tireless efforts of two missionaries from the United States who gave themselves fully to this project: Walter W. Krider from the Methodist Church and Maeda Itoko from the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). The first President, the Reverend Nakazato Chosho, provided the necessary spiritual guidance for the Institute, but it was the financial assistance of missionary Krider and the curriculum skills of missionary Maeda that helped to get things started.


Krider received his MA degree from Boston University Graduate School of Theology in 1920 and came to Japan the following year. He was involved in mission work in Tokyo until l922 and in Nagasaki until 1935. He returned to the U.S. and became quite rich as a lumber merchant but returned to Japan in 1955 to continue his mission work in Okinawa. He contributed generously to mission work in Okinawa and to the establishment and maintenance of Okinawa Christian Institute until 1960. His financial assistance was outstanding.


Okinawa Christian Institute began in Shuri Church, which was then within the Okinawa Kyodan, but was later able to put up a new building in a corner of Shuri Castle Park. (It has since moved to the town of Nishihara.) In order to erect the new building, Krider donated US$10,000 that he had made as a lumber merchant. The church in Okinawa did not have adequate financial resources to build the school at the time, but Krider also worked through the Interboard Committee to call upon churches in the U.S. to contribute to building the new school. As a result, the Methodist Church, the Disciples of Christ, and The Evangelical and Reformed Church each contributed $10,000 for a total of $30,000. After returning to the U.S., Krider died in 1965.


Missionary Maeda Itoko became a missionary to Japan but was actually a Japanese person born in Tokyo in 1918. She grew up in a house with a strong Buddhist atmosphere but became a Christian and felt a call to ministry while attending Seigakuin College in Tokyo, under the influence of Jessie Trout. Following graduation, she became a teacher at Seigakuin and Keisen Jogakuen Senior High School, after which she went to the U.S. and studied at College of the Bible of Eastern Mennonite College. After completing her studies, she was recognized as a missionary by the American Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and sent to Okinawa in 1956, where she engaged in mission work that included endeavoring to bring about the establishment of Okinawa Christian Institute. She worked hard to create a course of study that would compare with the high level of education she had experienced at Seigakuin. She designed the curriculum and helped to choose the staff. Her contribution was formidable. Outside of class, she was equally dedicated, making comments to students concerning their manners, behavior, and language and even accompanying them to their job interviews. Sometimes she smiled, and sometimes she scolded. This happened so often that they dubbed her “the scolder who also smiles.” But her students admit it was both her affection and her severity that enabled them to grow. She also directed her enthusiasm towards preaching in and leading women’s groups in the church. After leaving Okinawa, she was sent to Brazil and passed away in the U.S. in 2007.


Along with remembering the contributions of both Krider and Maeda, we are reminded of their relationship to the U.S. military bases in Okinawa. During the 1950s and 1960s, while they both were active in Okinawa, land was being expropriated and bases were expanding. Two of their former students accused them of depending too heavily on the U.S. military bases. In order to maintain the school buildings and raise money for scholarships, it is said that they took students with them to military bases and visited the chapels to ask for donations. Christian education and the relationship between mission and the military bases is one that came into question from this early time and continues to be questioned today. (Tr. RW)

—Dean Kim Young-Soo  Office of Chaplaincy



1957年、沖縄戦から12年を経て沖縄キリスト教学院(沖縄キリスト教短期大学・沖縄キリスト教学院 大学)は、戦争の悲惨さを体験した沖縄キリスト者達の、平和な島を作る担い手を輩出したいという願いから誕生した。沖縄では琉球大学 に次いで二番目に創設された大学である。いわゆる外国ミッションボードによって建てられた大学ではない。しかし、その創設の為に尽力 した二人の宣教師なくして、この学院の誕生は難しかったであろう。一人はウオルター W.クライダー(Walter W. Krider)宣教師(米国メソジスト教会派遣)、一人は前田伊都子宣教師(米ディサイプルチャーチ派遣)である。初 代理事長・学長の仲里朝章牧師が学院の精神的な指導者であったが、クライダー宣教師は財政面を支え、前田宣教師は教務を担当する形で 学院は出発することができた。


クライダー宣教師は、1920年ボストン大学神学大学院でM.Aを取得、翌年来日した。東京には22年まで、長崎で35年まで宣教活動をおこなった。一時帰国し材木商として財を成したが、1955年に沖縄で宣教師としての活動を再開する。1960年まで沖縄の伝道と沖縄キリスト教学院の設立・維持の為に多大な貢献をした。特に経済的な面で際立っている。沖縄キリスト教学院は、設立当初沖縄キリスト教団(現日本基督教団)首里教会の会堂を校舎としたが、その後、首里城公園の一角に新校舎を建設した。(現在は西原町に移転)その校舎建設のために、クライダー宣教師は材木商として貯めて来た一万ドルを捧げたのであった。当時の沖縄キリスト教団の経済力では、学校を創設することは不可能であったが、クライダー宣教師はIBC(Inter Board Committee:内外協力会)を通じてアメリカの諸教会に新校舎建設の為の献金を呼びかけた。その結果、メソジスト教会(The Methodist church)、ディサイプル教会(Disciple of Christ)、福音改革派教会(The Evangelical and Reformed Church)




前田伊都子宣教師は、1918年東京生まれの日本人であった。仏教色の濃い家庭に育ったが、東京の聖学 院でキリスト者となり、恩師のジェッシー・トラウト(Jessie Trout)の感化をうけて献身する。卒業後、聖学院と恵泉女学園で教鞭をとった後に渡米しEastern Mennonite CollegeのCollege of the Bibleで修学した後、米ディサイプル教会の宣教師に任命されたのである。1956年に沖縄に派遣され、伝道と共 に沖縄キリスト教学院設立の仕事に従事することになる。自身が聖学院で受けた高度な教育を学生達に提供するために奮闘した。カリキュ ラムの作成、教育を担当する教員の雇用等、その教育的功績は大きい。教室以外でも、学生達の行儀や立ち振る舞い、エチケットや言葉遣 いにいたるまで気を配り、就職の面接試験にも同行する程熱心であった。学生達は「ニコガミ先生」と呼んだ。ニコニコしながらもガミガ ミと叱るということであろう。学生達はその愛と厳しさで成長したという。その他、教会説教、婦人会の指導に情熱を傾けた。沖縄宣教の 後、ブラジルにも派遣され2007年に米国で永眠した。


クライダー、前田、両宣教師の大きな教育的功績と共に考えさせられるのは、米軍基地との関係である。彼 らが活動した50年・60年代は、土地収奪と基地拡張の時代でもあった。当時の教え子達から、二人が「米軍のベース(基地)に寄りか かっていた」と指摘の声もある。学校整備や学生達への奨学金についても、学生達を米軍のチャペルに連れて行って献金を要請することも あったという。キリスト教教育・宣教と基地の関係の問題は、その時代から沖縄で問われ続けている。

(宗教部長 キム ヨンス金 永秀)


【October 2016 No.389】A Message from the General Secretary A Call for Churches to “be on Fire for Gospel Evangelism!”

Churches in the 17 districts of Kyodan utilize substantial funds, received from offerings, to promote cooperative evangelism through “mutual aid” in each district, subdistrict and congregation. Without such a mechanism, small rural churches, as well as churches without full-time pastors (i.e. multiple-charge churches and churches with interim pastors), would not be viable.


For this reason the former mutual aid system known as Kyodan Subsidies for District Activities, which was administered by the districts with voluntary contributions for mutual support, was phased out by the 2014 Kyodan General Assembly. Following this overhaul of regulations by the Kyodan, a mutual aid system was reinstituted under the name of Evangelism Fund System, through which all districts participate responsibly on a weighted contribution basis that is now administered by the Kyodan. With this, then, the Kyodan initiated an epoch-making, church-wide mutual aid system on a large scale. We can now honestly say the Kyodan is a church that is sustained by its mutual aid system.


Relevant to this, the Kyodan presently consists of 1,714 churches, with 173,672 members, among whom 85,001 are communicants, and 2,061 active ministers. (Figures are from the 2016 Kyodan Yearbook). As we consider these realities, it is important to be aware that, for example, 35% of the 50 churches in the East Chugoku District spanning Okayama and Tottori prefectures are without a minister, as is the case in 13% of all churches nationwide. Looking at this data, we can generally say that while the number of churches has not changed much from before, there is a great change in the numbers of members, especially communicant members, which has fallen drastically. This leads to a decline in the capacity for offerings. In fact, this problem was very strongly related to the startup of the aforementioned Kyodan Evangelism Fund System.


From within this reality, the Kyodan has chosen “Let us be on fire for gospel evangelism” as its watchword. On this subject of evangelism, Kyodan Moderator Ishibashi Hideo gave the following message in his greetings to the 2016 General Assemblies of each district:


“To be sure, there are many churches facing difficulties due to the advance of aging and declining birth rate in the church, even to the point of threatening the existence of the church in some places. But it is by the power of evangelism that churches, which make up the body of Christ, have been erected in these regions. I am encouraged to see, in areas where evangelism is difficult, churches living in faith that ‘The Lord of the Church is present in this town’ and formulating visions of evangelism uniquely suited for each community, and to hear their voice, ‘We are on fire for Gospel evangelism!’”

The Kyodan is seeking to unite on this point and is receiving the hope given to the Church that lives in the Lord. (Tr. DM)

—Nagasaki Tetsuo, general secretary

日本基督 教団(以下教団)Kyodanの17教区における教会は、それぞれの教区・地区・ 教会間に おいて金額的に相当の献金を用いて、「互助」による協力伝道を推進させている。そうしなければ、地域にある小教会・伝道所をはじめ無 牧師教会(兼牧教会・ 代務者教 会)の運営が成り立たないのである。このために、2014年開催の第39教団総会が、従来あった教区活動連帯金Kyodan Subsidies for District Activitiesと称した 教区間の同志的で自由に行ってきた互助制度を廃止し、これを教団として規則的にも整備し、全教会・全教区の責任的な参加をもって行う 教団が行う互助制度として発足させ、負担金化したものが、「伝道資金制度」である。つまり、教団は全教団的に大々的に互助制度を画期 的に立ち上げたのである。 教団は今 や教会の互助制度によって立つ教会集団であると言って差し支えない。これに対して、教団の教会・伝道所総数1,714、信徒総数173,672、内現住陪 餐会員数85001、教会担任教師数2,061(いずれも教団年鑑2016年より) である。これらの現実から更に注意すべきことには、例えば岡山・鳥取両県にまたがる東中国教区の全教会数50のうち、牧師がいないいわゆる無牧師教会の割合は、35パ-セン トであるのをはじめ全教団的には13パ-セントに達することが判明していることだ。私たちはこれらの資料を見て総じて言えることは、教会・伝道所数は 以前から余り変化はないことだが、変化の著しいのは、信徒数とりわけ現住陪餐会員の極端な減少である。と言うことは、献金力の低下に ある。実は、この問題が先に挙げた教団伝道資金制度の立ち上げと大いにかかわりがあったのだ。教団にはこうした現実の中から福音伝道 に熱く燃えようとの合い言葉がある。この伝道の課題について、石橋秀雄教団総会議長は、2016年度教区総会へ向けた挨拶で、「確かに、 教会は高齢化、少子化が進み、教会の活動の推進はも とより、その存続においても困難を覚えている教会が多くあります。しかし、その地域に主の御からだなる教会が立てられていることが伝 道の力です。伝道の困難な地域の教会で、『この町に教会の主は生きておられる』との確信のなかで、その町でしかできない伝道のビジョ ンを立てて『伝道に燃えている』という声を聞いてはげまされます」と語っている。教団はこの一点において一つになり、主にある教会の 希望が与えられようとしている。長崎哲夫