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» 06/10/2014
JAPAN
Nagasaki, government launches website to "rediscover" Japanese Christians
The local prefecture publishes oratio.jp, which includes the history and traditions of the Catholics in the area., the Archbishop Mgr. Takami tells AsiaNews: "It 'a choice of an economic nature which the Church must transform into a new opportunity for evangelization. We hope that the Pope's love for Japan will help us in our mission within our own society."

Nagasaki (AsiaNews) - The Japanese government's decision to advertise the presence of Christians in Nagasaki "is about the economy and tourism.  It is to promote awareness of the historical sites connected with the Church.  It has nothing to do with faith, but it is an excellent opportunity for the evangelization of the country. We really have to take advantage of this", says Msgr. Joseph Mitsuaki Takami, the Archbishop of Nagasaki, commenting on the new website launched by the local government to raise awareness of Japanese Christianity.

The site is called www.oratio.jp and thus far is only available in Japanese: versions will soon be published in both English and Korean. The purpose - admittedly - is to gain UNESCO "World Heritage" recognition for the churches and castles in the area by 2016. Built between the 16th and the 19th century, the 13 sites proposed to the UN also include Oura Cathedral, where Christians who had survived government persecution "reappeared".

According to a government official, "we placed emphasis on introducing the story of Christianity through the churches as places of prayer and in the manner in which people express their religious beliefs". In this site you will find 150 articles written by experts and residents of the area, which include the history of the churches and tourist attractions associated with them.

In this context Pope Francis' love for Japan and the recent visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the Vatican are certainly helpful: "The interest that the pontiff has for our country is moving and important. We need to take advantage of this historic moment of the Church, in which even Japanese society is interested in Catholics, to clarify our mission and explain the Church's presence in Japan".

 


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See also
06/09/2014 JAPAN - VATICAN
Japanese bishops: A future papal visit, a real chance for peace
by Peter Takeo Okada*
11/19/2013 JAPAN - VATICAN
For Nagasaki bishop, the Year of Faith has brought good results, now we are waiting for Francis
by Joseph Yun Li-sun
03/25/2013 THAILAND - VATICAN
Bangkok, prayers for Pope Francis and Benedict XVI on Palm Sunday
by Weena Kowitwanij
03/20/2013 LEBANON - VATICAN
A pope for the media and one for the faith, urgent need for Church reform in Lebanon
by Fady Noun
03/20/2013 THAILAND - VATICAN
Thai Catholics: Masses and prayers for Pope Francis, "sign and light" for the Church
by Weena Kowitwanij

Editor's choices
IRAQ - ITALY
Almost 700,000 euros raised as the 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' campaign continues
by Bernardo CervelleraA second instalment is sent with funds raised in September. The fate of East-West relations is being played out in the Middle East and Iraq. Pope Francis and the Synod issue an appeal. Governments are lukewarm. Aid is coming from around the world. A new international community is defeating the "globalisation of indifference."
IRAQ-VATICAN
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul": Archbishops’ thanks as first aid arrives
by Amel NonaMsgr. Amel Nona, the Chaldean Archbishop of Mosul, who is also a refugee himself, thanks all the donors to the AsiaNews campaign. The situation is increasingly difficult given the huge number of refugees and the arrival of winter and snow, making outdoor shelters and tents impossible. The crisis, an occasion that activates the faith of Christians.
ITALY - IRAQ
After raising € 350,000, 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' campaign continues
by Bernardo CervelleraDonations raised up to 31 August have been sent to the patriarch of Baghdad and the bishops of Kurdistan. The campaign helps to feed, house, clothe, and bring comfort to more than 150,000 Christian, Yazidi, Turkmen, Shia and Sunni refugees who fled the violence of the army of the Islamic Caliphate. People in Italy and around the world have been generous, including the poor and the unemployed, a sign of hope for the world as well as those who suffer and those who give.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
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