Tuesday, October 1, 2013

October 2013

For our Reflection

"Nothing is Impossible with God"

We often hear this words utter to us by a friend when we are in difficult situations. Indeed as believers we put out trust on God, whom we believe can make a difference in our life. 

As I am reading through some of blogs  that I  follow, I happen to  read this, it speaks of Catholics as people of Hope.

"As Catholics, we are a people of hope, and nothing says hope for me more than being open to possibility. Whether we are turning to God to help us through difficulties such as searching for a new job, fighting an illness or addiction, or even something as simple as starting a new day.  With each endeavor in our lives, big and small, there is the potential for great things.  When it comes to faith, I would even use the word extraordinary.  God can turn bad days into good ones, sad moments into times of blessings, and all we have to do is turn to Him and ask for his help and be open to the possibility."

Hope is the very heart of our faith. We are an Easter people. The Resurrection of Christ confirms that the goodness of God overcomes evil, love overcomes death. This where we are called to a grounded hope. A hope that God will be with us in difficult time. 

Faith in Action

Miyagi Ken

Minami San Riku Mass and Sunday School

 Every third sunday of the month we are celebrating in Minami San Riku. We do not have have the church in the area. The nearest place to celebrate the mass is in Yonekawa or in Kessenuma.

Since we started our mass in the area, we have been using the temporary building owned by Miss Amelia Sasaki, our leader of the Filipino group. We alreade have baptisms,  once a month mass and  the catechism of the children.

With the sisters the children have their sunday school once a month. Although its not enough at least the children have their follow up to deepen their faith after their baptism. 

Watari Church Welcomes Students from Tokyo

The Watari Community welcomes the group of student who came from Tokyo to take part in the volunteer work in Miyagi and Fukushima areas. Every summer as part of their reach out program to the victims of March 11, 2011 victims of tsunami and the nuclear crisis, they are visiting the Haramachi base and visits the people who are staying in the temporary housing.

Last September 11, the Filipino group welcomes the students in Watari Church by having a short program. The Filipino group taught the students how to dance tinikling (bamboo dance) while the students offered a song number of their host. It was indeed a meaningful encounter.

Monthly Mass in Watari Church

Our monthly mass in Watari Church is every fourth Saturday of the month. Fr. Garry and Fr. Jose celebrated the mass with us. After which a simple fellowship was held. There were around 20 people including the children and some Japanese who attended the Mass. We are indeed very happy for the support of our parish priest Fr. Jose who is always with us in our gathering.

We were planning to have the catechism of the children especially for their first communion. We hope we could plan this well in the future.


Bishop Otsuka Visits Ofunato

after the rosary in Ofunato Church
Bishop Otsuka of Kyoto visited the Ofunato base last September and met with the PAG ASA group, joining in their block rosary in Ofunato and Rikuzen Takata. It was the second time  bishop  came to visit us. During our rosary the Bp. Otsuka gave the chance for everyone to introduce themselves and share about their situation now.  The Bishop left a good impression among the members of the PAG ASA community because of his attentiveness to each member and his interest to listen to them.

block rosary in Rikuzen Takata
The Bishop also offered the mass in Ofunato church in which he appreciated the Christian and the PAG ASA community for a good welcome. He really appreciate the hospitality and the Filipino food.

Oyako Jyouji (Parent and Student Activities)

Some of our mothers join the oyako jyouji in the respected schools where their children are studying. Those studying in Otomo Sho Gakko (Otomo Elementary School) join in the activities by teaching parents how to cook leche flan (purin ).

Rose and Lea 
From Rosalinda's post she said, "Kyo no oyako jouji ni otomo shogakko de Purin wo chukutte masu....piripin no okaasan tachi ga sensei ni nattemasu."

Reunion in Ofunato

Two years ago the Fr. Shota brought the group of Christians in Shinjo Catholic Church in Yamagata ken to visit the the church and to create a bond with the group of the Filipinos their.

Last Sept 22-23, the Shinjo Community with Fr. Honma  Kenji, parish priest of Shinjo Catholic Church, came to visit the Ofunato Church.
Fr. Shota and Marife guided the group to the Miracle Pine tree in Rikuzen Takata and gave a tour to the tsunami devastated  areas in Ofunato and Rikuzen Takata. At 4 in the afternoon, we celebrate the mass together. The Mizusawa group of Filipinos came to help us in the singing during the mass.  Fr. Harnoko, with Fr. Honma. Fr. Shota and Fr. Garry celebrate the mass. Frs Honma and Shota gave the sharing during the mass in which they highlighted the special bonds that happened in from the start and thank people especially the Couples of Christ Kuya Boyet and Kuya Dennis, who helped in creating this bonding of both communities. After the mass the, we headed to the Furiai Land for  barbecue party.

On the second day, we again gathered in Ofunato Catholic Church for the Tagalog Mass. Fr. Garry, Fr. Honma, and Fr. Harnoko celebrated the mass. Indeed this is not the end, but a beginning and the strengthening of the bond we had started two years ago.

Thank you to our Brother's from Couple For Christ, Kuya Boyet and Kuya Dennis. Thank you for coming  in Ofunato.  We were blessed with assistance provided by Couples For Christ.


information and pictures from Haydee Kaiyama and Aiko san

Aomori Ken

Mr. Tsugutoshi Padilla Aragaki meets with Hachinohe Filipino group

Mr. Tsugutoshi Padilla Aragaki, is a known as a Gospel song writer in Japan. He is too a Filipino by heart.

Last Sept 29, in Hachinohe, he met with the Filipino group especially those who are singing for the mass. Fr. Yokojima wanted the Filipino to meet with Mr. Aragaki and to sing for him.  It was indeed a meaningful encounter with the group.

Mr. Aragaki with the Filipino group in Hachinohe Church

Congratulation Mr. And Mrs. Koshino

We were able to attend the wedding of two Vietnamese couples last september 13 , 2013 ,here in Hirosaki Catholic Church the bride Diep chan is an active attendee of our monthly novena and rosary every 2nd wednesday of the month .The wedding party reception was also attended by some sisters, Filipinas and Japanese friends . The bride is not a Catholic before he met her husband but because of her love to him she studied our religion for one year ....they got married also in Vietnam last August 17, 2013.

the newly wed with Pat and Rose

Monthly Mass in Hirosaki Church

Fr. Antonius Haru thank you again for coming to Hirosaki , We were so delighted with your Mass in three languages english , japanese and tagalog ,we will never forget your Homily about the meaning of " Satogaeri " going back home .

information from Pat Kikuchi

Bishop Hiraga's Pastoral Visit in Hirosaki

Bishop Martino Hiraga, the bishop of Sendai Diocese visited Hirosaki Church last Sept 29 for his yearly pastoral visit and confirmation. We were indeed blessed since there were a number of confirmations among our members.

Bishop Hiraga with those who receive the Confirmation
We pray for the strengthening of the faith and be able bring the light of Christ as they receive the gifts of the Sacrament of Confirmation.

pictures from Pat Kikuchi

Fukushima Ken

Masses in Fukushima Area

We have our monthly mass in Noda Machi every first sunday of the month.  We are growing in number and we hope for more participation in the coming months. 

In Koriyama church, I normally do the English mass at fourth Saturday of the month.  Regularly it's a Japanese mass, but on the fourth Saturday, the church celebrates the English mass. 

In Shirakawa, we have the regular Tagalog Mass on the First Saturday of the month. After the mass, we have our block rosary in the area. 

In Onnahama, we have the regular Tagalog mass on the Second Saturday of the month. The mass was intended for the seafarers in the area because of the presence of the port near the church. 

Our Masses for the fourth Sunday of the month in Iwaki, Shirakawa and Sukagawa Churches is being done every other month. Some of our members are asking me why we have no masses in Iwaki Churches now. This is due to the fact that I am alone now. Before we have Fr. Harnoko and me who divide both masses for Shirakawa - Sukagawa and Iwaki Church masses. I hope we understand why sometimes we dont have masses in our area.

Introduction to Japanese Culture and Events

Health and Sports Day - 体育の日

Most communities and school across Japan celebrate Sports Day with a sports festival which is similar to a mini Olympics. These festivals include many of the traditional track and field events, such as 4 x 100m relay, 100m sprinting, and long jump, as well as many other events. Some of the events include: ball toss, tug-o-war, rugby-ball dribbling races, sack races, and so on. Another common event is often simply called the “exciting relay”, which is an obstacle course relay including any number of different challenges: Three-legged races, making a stretcher with a blanket and bamboo poles and then carrying an “injured” teammate, laundry hanging, crawling on hands and knees under a net, and doing cartwheels across a mat.

The festival usually begins around 8:30 am with a parade featuring all the different teams that will be participating: it could be divided by neighbourhood, class, geographic area, or school. There is sometimes a local marching band providing music. Once the parade has gone around the field and lined up in the middle, the band will play Kimigayo and the Japanese flag will be raised. Local officials will make speeches welcoming everyone. Often everyone will spread out across the grounds for group stretching(this stretching routine was developed by the government and is done daily by many Japanese people; the stretching routine music is broadcast daily on the radio and TV). Then it is time to start the events.

source  : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_and_Sports_Day


For almost a month,  I feel I spend most of time inside my car. Traveling from one Church to another, leaving early to catch on time for the mass.  I almost lost that regularity in my prayer. I also feel that I don't have the energy I need for the activity of the day. 

One day, instead of falling into the trap of doing things on my own to get out of the stress by myself, I try to open up to God, meditate for a moment and just listen to my favorite Gospel song.  This short moment of silence had filled me with peace that helped me throughout the day. 

From this day I offer my activities to God. Because I believe in His promise that He will be with me always. 


幸福の星 the Album we recorded last August with Fr. Harnoko, with the children and mother of PAG ASA member, volunteers and Fr. Garry is out.  

For inquiries and information about the CD you can call Aiko Hayashi san, the Sendai Support Center for Foreigners staff .

Tel : 090-5666-1747
fax: 0192-26-3291

For Orders and Inquiries  please call 

Suemori Hideki San in Tokyo 



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