【October 2017 No.394】Executive Council Focuses on Finances and Evangelism Policy

The Executive Council of the 40th General Assembly Period (2016-18) held its second meeting, July 10–11, at the Kyodan headquarters with all 30 members present. First, Kyodan Moderator Ishibashi Hideo gave the report of official observers who had attended the various annual district assemblies. The continuing decline in the overall statistical strength of the Kyodan is a concern that he intends to raise in the two upcoming meetings of district moderators during this general assembly period.

 

Next, Kyushu District Moderator Umesaki Koji reported that flooding in northern Kyushu occurred with the torrential rains of July 5. He stated that while the Asakura area of Fukuoka Prefecture and the Hita area of Oita Prefecture experienced severe damage, there was no significant damage to the churches other than at Kusu Church’s daycare facility.

 

In his report, Acting General Secretary Dohke Norikazu announced that Shuza Church in Osaka will withdraw from the Kyodan at the end of March 2018. Following discussion concerning that, it was approved. Dohke also reported that Financial Affairs Secretary Kera Yuji finished his term of service last March and that Iijima Makoto, Secretary in Charge of East Japan Disaster Relief Projects Planning Headquarters, would be stepping down in August.

 

Takahashi Jun and Tanaka Kaoru, committee chair and secretary of the committee on support for rebuilding churches damaged by the April 2016 earthquake in Kyushu, used slides to explain the situation in Kumamoto and Oita prefectures.. Of the 15 churches damaged in the quake, two need to be rebuilt completely: Beppu Furocho Church and Yufuin Church. Demolition of the latter has already been accomplished Sugahara Tsutomu, chair of the Council for Reviewing the System of Clergy Development, reported that while the Clergy Summer Retreat sponsored by the Office of Evangelism Promotion could be considered as applicable to the clergy development system, training courses for clergy at 10 years and 20 years of service should also be implemented. He also reported that 511 people attended the 500th Anniversary Celebration of the Protestant Reformation held June 22 at Fujimicho Church.

 

The second day began with deliberation on financial matters. Commission on Finance Chair Aizawa Toyoshige reported that while Secretary of Financial Affairs Kera had stepped down at the end of March, his replacement had become ill and was unable to take over from April as planned. So it has been arranged for a licensed tax accountant to serve as a financial advisor for a fee of 100,000 yen per month.  Following approval of the first and second revised budgets, the financial statement of income and expenditures for fiscal year 2016 was discussed and approved.

 

The session that afternoon was extended by 30 minutes to finish work on the “basic policies on the promotion of evangelism in the Kyodan” proposed by the moderator. These were discussed and enacted with the statement, “Our goal is to restore the strength and vitality of evangelism in the Kyodan so that the Kyodan can faithfully obey the Great Commission of our Lord, and in order to do that, we establish these basic policies on the promotion of evangelism in the Kyodan.” The intention is to make these proposals concrete by promoting evangelism through the “prayer movement” (praying together), the “laity movement” (evangelizing together), and the “offering movement” (giving together). (Tr. TB)

—Kato Makoto, executive secretary

常議員会報告

第40総会期第2回常議員会報告

加藤 誠

 

第40総会期第2回常議員会が2017年7月10,11日と教団会議室で開催され、常議員30人全員が出席した。議事の冒頭石橋議長は教区総会問安を報告し、教勢の衰退傾向が気になるが、今総会期中に2回行われる教区議長会議の議事にしたいと述べた。続いて梅﨑浩二九州教区議長が7月5日に発生した九州北部豪雨被害について「福岡の朝倉地区、大分の日田地区で甚大な被害が出たが、教会関係では 玖珠教会の保育園に被害が出た以外にはなかった」と報告した。総幹事報告で、道家紀一総幹事事務取扱は「主座教会(大阪教区)が3月末で教団から離脱するとの報告を受けた」と述べた。質疑応答の後これを承認した。また道家総務幹事事務取扱 は計良祐時財務幹事が3月末に任期満了で退任し、8月には飯島信震災対応幹事が退任すると報告した。

昨年4月に発生した熊本・大分地震に対する被災教会会堂再建支援委員会からは高橋潤委員長と田中かおる書記がスライ ドを用いて説明。被災15教会中建て替えが必要なのは別府不老町教会と由布院教会で、由布院教会はすでに解体されていると報告した。

教師養成制度検討委員会の菅原力副委員長は、「教師の養成制度については、伝道推進室による教師の夏期研修 をその一環として受け止めながら、卒業後10年研修、20年研修の実施を検討して行きたい」と述べた。また、宗教改革500周年記念事業で、6月22日、富士見町教会で開催された記念礼拝に511人の出席があったことが報告された。

二日目は財務関連議案の審議からスタートした。2016年度第一次、第二次補正予算案を承認した上で2016年度教団歳入歳出決算を承認した。承認に先立って愛澤豊重予算決算委員長は、計良前財務幹事が3月末で退任、しかし後任者が体調を崩しているため、2017年4月より税理士法人と経理顧問契約(月次顧問料10万円)を結んだことを報告した。

二日目後半は終了時間を30分延長して、議長提案「教団伝道推進基本方針」を審議・制定した。「教団の伝道力の命と力の回復を目指し、主 の伝道命令に忠実に従う教団を形成するために教団伝道推進基本方針を制定する」として、祈祷運動(共に祈ろう)信徒運動(共に伝えよ う)、献金運動(共に献げよう)を掲げて伝道を推進していく提案が、今後具体的に展開することになる。

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