Tuesday, February 3, 2015

February 2015

For Our Reflection

Nostalgia can be a beautiful thing if it reminds you of good times you once had with loved one, or special places or times in your life. But there is another side to nostalgia—and if you stay there too long, it can poison your present and your future.
Reminisce long enough and you’ll think that the it was only in the past that you were able to truly live—at least that’s how it was for me—until I started to see how looking back was holding me back. There were so many things I wanted to redo, so many wrongs I wanted to right armed with the knowledge I had now (it always works like that, doesn’t it, that you want to go back in time with everything you know now…); so many old friends I wanted to reconnect with.
That kind of thinking, however, can block you from all the good things happening right now. 
In Philippians Paul writes that he desires to be like Jesus and wanting to learn to do so, so he has to follow Jesus’ and forget his old life. Paul writes about this in 3:13 saying he can achieve this goal by “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead.”
God doesn’t want us to go backwards. He wants us to go forward in our lives. To move on, to learn from and let go of the past.

Cardinal Tagle Visits Sendai Diocese

It was indeed a great blessing for Sendai Diocese to be visited by Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, Archbishop of Manila. The Cardinal arrived in Japan Feb.1 and from the airport, he went to Sendai to celebrate the mass in Sendai Cathedral. Bishop Hiraga and some priest of the diocese welcomed Cardinal Tagle to the diocese.

During the mass Cardinal Tagle address the Filipinos in Tagalog "Magpakabait kayo" (Be Good) and encourage them to share the joy of faith to the Japanese church. He also encouraged them to let their sons and daughters be servants of God by being a priest or nun here in Japan.

On the light moment, the cardinal shared about his experience when he was on his flight to Japan that the airplane crew members and even the Captain had a "selfie" with him. Maybe he said "this will served as a proof to St. Peter that they had met Cardinal Tagle and eventually will reserve a place in heaven". And so after the mass, the Cardinal was literally, "dinumog" for "selfie" that I have to escape or else I will be crushed in the middle of the altar.

It only shows how the people really love the Cardinal and wanted to be close to him. The Cardinal himself although I could only presume to be tired after a long trip was all smile and welcoming to each and everyone.

This is indeed the most memorable event for all of us and a blessings.

the Cardinal was literally "dinumog" but was all smile for each one

"Hafu"  Shown in Ofunato Akenohoshi Kinder Garten

Hafu, a documentary movie about the Japanese children whose one of the parents is a foreigner was being shown last Jan 18 in Akenohoshi Kinder Garten. After the 9:30 mass in the church, we move to the kinder garten hall to watch the movie. There were around 40 people who watch and discussed the movie.

Here is the Synopsis of the movie

"With an ever increasing movement of people between places in this transnational age, there is a mounting number of mixed-race people in Japan, some visible others not. “Hafu” is the unfolding journey of discovery into the intricacies of mixed-race Japanese and their multicultural experience in modern day Japan. The film follows the lives of five “hafus”–the Japanese term for people who are half-Japanese–as they explore what it means to be multiracial and multicultural in a nation that once proudly proclaimed itself as the mono-ethnic nation. For some of these hafus Japan is the only home they know, for some living in Japan is an entirely new experience, and others are caught somewhere between two different worlds.
According to the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, one in forty-nine babies born in Japan today are born into families with one non-Japanese parent. This newly emerging minority in Japan is under-documented and under-explored in both literature and media. The feature-length HD documentary film, “Hafu – the mixed-race experience in Japan” seeks to open this increasingly important dialogue. The film explores race, diversity, multiculturalism, nationality, and identity within the mixed-race community of Japan. And through this exploration, it seeks to answer the following questions: What does it mean to be hafu?; What does it mean to be Japanese?; and ultimately, What does all of this mean for Japan?
Narrated by the hafus themselves, along with candid interviews and cinéma vérité footage, the viewer is guided through a myriad of hafu experiences that are influenced by upbringing, family relationships, education, and even physical appearance. As the film interweaves five unique life stories, audiences discover the depth and diversity of hafu personal identities." 
For more information about the movie please visit the homepage 

Word of Thanks

I would like first of all to inform all the communities  that I am visiting for Tagalog/English mass that from Jan. 24, 2015, I am officially transferred to Hachinohe Shio Machi Catholic Church in Aomori Ken. From now on, I will be part of the team of priests in Aomori area that takes care of seven churches from Oominato to Ninohe areas.

With this transfer, I could not continue the monthly masses I had before in Fukushima (Noda, Iwaki, Koriyama and Shirakawa) in Miyagi (Watari, Ishinomaki, Minami San Riku) in Iwate (Ichinoseki) areas. But Fr. Edgar will try his best to continue the masses in Areas of Iwate (Ichinoseki) some areas in Fukushima and Miyagi areas from now on.

I would like  to thank all of you for your unending support and prayer during these three years of my work in the Sendai Diocese Support Centre for Foreigners.

Our Newsletter will continue of course, but I will need your help to gather some news about your activities and events in your communities. I hope you will always be generous to give time to write and share some pictures about your communities so that we can publish them here in our newsletter.

Again thank you and let's continue to support and pray for one another.