Monday, July 1, 2013

July 2013 NewsLetter


Propositon 21 - Migrants

"Just as many countries have greatly benefitted from the presence of people coming from other countries, so too the Church is nourished in a significant way with the witness and the evangelizing work of many of those engaged with the missionary mandate: “Go out into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to all creation” (Mk 16: 15). 

Given the risks and threats to the faith of the migrating peoples, it is important that the Church gives her support through a pastoral plan that includes them and their families, and reminds them of their important place as the living cell of society and the domestic Church. Parishes should help the migrants integrate themselves into society and the Christian community. 

The Church’s pastoral plan for migrants should not only welcome migrants and promote their human dignity, but should above all help them be integrated into the life of the Church, respecting their own ritual tradition; this plan should also help them avoid becoming lost to the Catholic Church. 

Immigrants are not only recipients, but also protagonists of the proclamation of the Gospel in the modern world. 

In the face of the great migratory movements, it is important to insist on the centrality and dignity of the person, in particular in light of the grave phenomena of a new slavery connected to the shameful trafficking of human beings, especially children, and the selling of organs. This awareness must increase when dealing with refugees, the displaced, those on the sea, nomads and people without a fixed home."

The Synod on New Evangelization touch on the issue of migrants with the proposition 21 of the final message of the Synod of Bishops in Rome  last October 7-28  2012. 

The migrants constitute a big contribution to the number of the Catholics here in Japan. Yet in some ways our presence is either for the international events and international gathering that is happening in the different churches and diocese. 

It is my hope the one day, we become protagonist of the proclamation of the Gospel in the modern world and not just objects of pastoral care of the Churches which welcome the migrants. With our diverse practice and our own ritual traditions, it is my hope that we are understood by the Christian community and that we will be supported to our own journey of faith.  

The communities of faithful should be places open to and welcoming diversity: thus the new evangelisation is in fact lives out the fruitful exchange of cultures and religious transitions which call for respect and complementarity.

                                               FAITH IN ACTION

Home Helpers Graduation Ofunato

68日、大船渡教会で介護ホームヘルパー2級の資格を取ったフィリピン人7名と中国人1名の合計8名のThanksgiving & Graduation ceremoniesが行われました。フィリピンから帰ってきたばかりのFr.Garry、綾里からヘルパーの資格を取った先輩の皆さん、ベースからボランティアさんもお祝いに来てくれました。ヘルパー免許授与式後、Fr.Haruは日本語の勉強をしてヘルパーの免許を取った!と言うこの自信が皆さんのこれからに役立つと話してくれました。また、このメンバーの中でいちばん遠い米川から大船渡まで、冬の雪道も車で23時間の道を通ったSr.Victorinaは一緒に学ぶ仲間がいたからがんばれた!と話していました。さらに、このグループの中にはもう就職が決まっている人がおり、7月から仕事が始まります。式後のカラオケではみんな歌って踊って楽しい時間を過ごしました!

by Aiko Hayashi

Angie recieving her certificate of completion for level 2 home helper

 THE  GRADUATES and their Experiences

                 Finally, eight members graduated last June 8 ,which was sponsored by Caritas Japan Osaka. This group from Ofunato graduated as caregivers. I was one of them and I'm very lucky that I was given the opportunity to take a free lesson of caregiving. And since I am one of them , I decided to interview some friends who are now working as caregivers. 

                 Estrella Yoshida....

                 I ' ve been working for 8 months, already. I ' ve tried different jobs. And I can say that this one fits me most. Aside from the good salary, I find caregiving is the best job. Here , there's no descrimination. We work as one , we have unity. And the most important thing was, the passion in work. I love the elders. I treat them as my family. Most of them were childish and selfish. But this was just natural. They needed attentions and love . And I am willing to give it to them ,  I took care of my late father in law. Even though , he was not my real father, I've treated him as my own. That's why when I was offered to take caregiving lessons , I didn't think twice. I knew that I will stay long in this job. Iam now 46 years old. And I am planning to retire at the age of 55 maybe... In Gods will.

                 Sarah Trogani.....

                 Caregiving. Some may think that it's a dirty , lousy job. Specially here in Japan that we have to learn nihonggo first. How to read and write Japanese. Caregiving is not that hard actually, but I have to adjust more on reading and writing kanji. I don't care about the salary. As long as I enjoy what I'm doing. Specially when I saw the disabled elders.They need somebody who will look after them.Who will took care of them. That's why I treat them as my family. I feel for them. This coming June ,I will be on my tenth month already.And I do love my job. 
                 So for those who wants to be a caregiver someday, always work with your heart. 
                  To Fr.Haru, Fr.Gary and Ai chan , who were always there supporting us. Thank you very much. And for the newly graduates, CONGRATULATIONS.

                  Jocelyn Sugiyama....

                  I can say that caregiving is not an easy job. Because you need to know each one of them. Their likes and dislikes. They have different characteristics. There are some , who are already friendly from the start. You have to be careful in every word you say coz you might hurt them. Most of them were blind. And I know how they felt. STRESSED.

                  It's fun coz once you get to know them , You can feel that they're your family. And you' ll found out later that you' re important to them. 

                   I'm so thankful to them because.... すばらしい仕事が出来て、こんなかんどする仕事ないと思います。本とにありがとございます。かんしゃします。

      Yes, I am also one of them. And during my practise, I felt the same thing with Estrella, Sarah and Jocelyn. You have to treat them as your family and without knowing it as Jocelyn said , you're already important to them. You have to work with your heart .

                                                                                  Written by :

                                                                            Marife Sugawara


Mass in Hachinohe

Our monthly mass for the second sunday of the month is in Hachinohe Aomori ken. Since it is not snowing, we decided to go by car. Haydee Kaiyama, Hortensia and Haruka chan joined us going to Hachinohe.

After just six months of celebrating mass in Hachinohe,  I am very glad to see the very positive development of the group. First, we have the choir who lead us in the singing. The choir members are composed of trainees who are working in a company in the Hachinohe city. Secondly, there is a growing number of attendees who are not only coming from Hachinohe but from other areas near Hachinohe city. Another great development is that, our choir members are also invited to sing in the Japanese mass. We hope that one day our aim to build a  united community of Japanese and the foreigners will be realize.

Mass in Hirosaki

June 12, in Celebration of our Independence day, I went to Hirosaki Church to celebrate our monthly mass and novena to the Mother of Perpetual help. We left early from Ofunato thinking that our trip will be longer, but we arrived 30 minutes ahead of the Novena and so join the group in the prayer.

There were around 20 people who attended the mass including some Japanese Christian who stayed with us. After the mass we have a fellowship and Fr. Paul Tou, Quebec Mission Society joined us in our meal. Miho chan the daughter of Rhamelyn Kogawa our newest member of the community was there with us. It was  a simple and joyful gathering of the community members. The future plans include a retreat and spiritual renewal of the group.

A note from Mrs. Vivian Narumi

"Just a short note of thanks for all those who attend our monthly novena and rosary prayer , We are proud that some japanese and from vietnam joined our rosary , May God continue to bless all of us to unite spiritually .We feel extremely grateful that our church is lucky enough to have our Father Garry Gestoveo who is travelling long way around from Iwate Ken to Hirosaki shi  to lead our Novena and Mass . Father Garry we thank you for your service to the people of God."

  by  Vivian Narumi 

A Note from Diep Koshino
"I'm Diep  I'm Vietnamese I have known the Mass in every second  Wednesday of the month through my friend ,Mrs Pat Kikuchi. I have a language lesson at the same time with the worship activity, therefore I can not take part in fully from the beginning of this activity. However I'm really happy to have a chance to join with all of you. The Mass is very warm. The difference of language as well as culture seem disappeared and I can feel the love and peace and spirit sharing .
Father and all of you are so kind , cheerful and friendly."
 by  Diep Koshino

Praying together the Novena before the mass

Miho Chan desu-yoroshiku onegaishimasu

Iwate Ken

Visit to Emily Sasaki

After two months being out of the country, i feel i need to get into contact with the people in the community.  I visited Emily Sasaki in  Rikuzen Takata Yahagi. Its a 30-40 minutes drive from Ofunato. Emily is the one of the two Filipinas who are living in this area.
When we arrived, she was cleaning the house and  was alone because her children were in the day care center and in the school. She shared about her struggle in the her study of driving. She was hoping to get a driver`s license so that she could drive and start to work in the future.
Since it was humid, she brought us to the a spring near her house where they get water. She told us that her children is using the small creek as their pool during summer season. She also guided us to a small fish pond near her house.
I am just relieve to see Emily in high spirit. I encourage to study well to get the driver`s license so that she could drive from time to time to Rikuzen Takata and Ofunato.

Ichinoseki Mass

Ichinoseki is a two hour drive town from Ofunato. We have masses there once a month. We just started to celebrate the Tagalog mass in the area this year and I am happy to know that the participants is increasing. Last June 15 mass there were around 40 who join in the celebration. It was unexpected since we only have few contacts in the area. The most surprising discovery is that there are trainees in the area who are working in the factories. I am glad to know that some Filipinas in the area were generous to give them a ride to the church. At the same time there are those who are married to Japanese who compose mostly of the group. From next month we plan to have a fellowship after the mass so that we could have time to talk and know each other.

CAPACITAR Founder Gave Sessions to Ofunato

Dr. Patricia Mathes Cane giving one of the session in Ofunato Church

CAPACITAR Founder and CoDirector Patricia Mathes Cane,Ph.D, gave a seminar on wellbeing and healing in Ofunato church last June 16.  It was a great time having Pat as she directed us in the different tools to help us deal with stress and how to manage our emotions.

CAPACITAR is an international network working is over 35 countries, committed to communities affected by violence, poverty and trauma. Uniting people across borders, in solidarity, understanding and reconciliation. CAPACITAR`s vision is healing ourselves and healing our world. Using hands-on popular education approach, they teach simple wellness practices that leads to healing, wholeness and peace in the individual and in the world.

For two hours Dr. Pat gave us a hands on techniques on fingerholds to manage emotions, emotional freedom technique, the holds, head neck shoulder release and some techniques on acupressure for pain and traumatic stress. The participants were energized and learned simple skills on how to help themselves and other on how to manage pain, anger and stress. It is our hope that we can have a follow up session for this skills training so that we can deepen our knowledge with the techniques that were given to us.

refreshed faces of the participants after the different sessions

Yamaura Sensei Recieves Papal Recognition for his Tranlation of the Bible

We are all elated to know that our Parish council president Yamaura sensei received a Papal award for his work in translating the Bible is "Kesengo" or" Kesen Hougen." We had a simple fellowship in the church after the mass last June 23. 

Congratulation to Yamaura sensei and the Ofunato Community

Fukushima Ken

Shirakawa Church

Last June 2, Sister Marcy and Rose Marie Aoyagi conducted a seminar training program for the Shirakawa group discussing the topics on "Who is Jesus", The Fundamental Difference Between Faith and Belief", "Repent and Believe the Good News" and the meaning of the "Sign of the Cross". There were 8 who participated on the said seminar. This is part of the training of the leaders and also deepening their knowledge and faith about Jesus and the Church. This is series of seminar is conducted every first Sunday of the month in Shirakawa Catholic Church. 

Miyagi Ken

PhilCom Sendai Celebrates Independence Day

In Commemoration of the 115th Independence Day of the Philippines the PhilCom Sendai in Miyagi Prefecture celebrate it together with their 2nd Anniversary and the induction of the New Officers of the community.  
Here are some the pictures from the events. 
 Pagnanunumpa ng  mga PhilCom Sendai Officers 

that`s the Spirit of PhilCom Sendai 

To the Sendai PhilCom congratulations and for the new officers am looking forward to work together with you in our activities.  More power and God Bless.

The Tagalog Version of the Tsunami Stories made in Manga

Four different stories, four places and four Filipinas were featured in the comic book sponsored by JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agancy) , DOST PHIVOLS (Department of Science and Technology - Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology), NIED (Nationa Research Institutes for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention, JST (Japan Science and Technology Agency. The stories were from Imelda Suzuki of Watari Fukushima, Lorna Kikuta, of Ishinomaki Miyagi, Marivel Gunji, of Kessenuma Miyagi and Haydee Kaiyama of Rikuzentakata, Iwate Ken. 
Learning from our experience of the disaster, it is the hope of this comic book that we are prepare and that we will know what to do when a big disaster will happen like that of March 11, 2011. 

Remembering the First Gathering of the Foreigners in Sendai Diocese

June is a month when we had our first gathering of the foreigners in Sendai diocese.  Last year, we had our first gathering of the foreigners in Sendai Diocese in Fukushima. This event kick off some of the activities of the Sendai Support Center for the Foreigners. With the help from the different groups and people who gave their time and effort to facilitate the event.  We have come up with programs, events, organisations and communities building seminars for the different communities in Tohoku Region.  

We are still starting as a center for foreigners in the diocese. The greatest challenge is the distance of each community.  We are making a system that will respond to the needs of the foreigners and the communities in the diocese. We are learning and I know we are moving on the right direction. Keep praying and keep supporting your local communities.

The first gathering of Foreigners in Sendai Diocese June 2012