【December 2020 No.408】EMS Convenes First Virtual Biennial Assembly

The Evangelical Mission in Solidarity (EMS), an international mission organization centered in Germany, held its biennial general meeting Nov. 12-14 via Zoom. In addition to representatives from each of the provinces in Germany as well as from Switzerland, South Africa, Ghana, Jordan, Israel, India, Indonesia, and Korea, there were denominational representatives from Japan, the Basel Mission (Switzerland), DOAM (Deutsche Ostasienmission), etc. for a total of about 70 participants. The Kyodan was represented by General Secretary Akiyama Toru, who participated from his home.

The conference began with the adoption of a Code of Conduct, particularly as it relates to sexual harassment, and two ombudspersons were selected to receive any related complaints. Establishing a process to deal with harassment issues is a concern at international conferences and is practiced by the World Council of Churches and other similar bodies. The Kyodan could use this as a basis for its own deliberations on how to handle such issues.

EMS conferences include not only business discussions but also a keynote speech, times of prayer, and Bible-based sharing, so I always learn something. The keynote address, entitled “For freedom Christ has set us free,” was given by Rev. Dr. Sathianathan Clarke, professor of Theology, Culture and Mission at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC., who hails from India. The Bible Sharing time, conducted in small groups, focused on Luke 4:18-19 and how each of us interpret that passage. Likewise, participants shared about their own situations, particularly in relation to the Corona Virus pandemic and how their churches are dealing with the consequences. It was my first experience of such a small group discussion within a large conference via Zoom.

The main theme of the conference was also the Corona Virus pandemic that has spread throughout the world and how the work of the Evangelical Mission in Solidarity can be maintained and strengthened in this situation. Conducting the conference itself via zoom, as well as holding the EMS Mission Council meeting via video conferencing, was one step taken, so a motion was passed to revise the bylaws to allow for the decisions of this zoom conference to be considered official.

The financial report for the 2018-2019 period was given; and the proposed budget for 2021-2022, proposals for personnel placement, along with membership fees for each participant were also discussed. The EMS budget has been mostly borne by the German churches, and since each of the German provincial churches is dependent on the national church tax that is being impacted by the Corona Virus pandemic, it appears that there will be a significant decrease in income from 2020 onward. How to deal with this prospect in regards to personnel and operational expenses is of great concern, so structural reforms and a reordering of relationships with other mission organizations will be necessary. As the extent of income reduction cannot yet be predicted, it was decided to delegate authority for revamping the budget to the EMS Mission Council and its finance committee.

In addition to these motions, the conference discussed the 5-year Activity Plan for EMS entitled “Free for the Future,” and approved the applications of “guest membership” status from the Church of North India and the Evangelical Church of West Sulawesi in Indonesia.

As an evangelical mission organization covering Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia and East Asia, EMS is facing numerous missional issues, including ecological sustainability in the face of climate change, the economic and social gaps being exacerbated by the Corona Virus pandemic, ethnic- and religious-motivated violence, the polarization of international relationships, and how to achieve economic and social fairness and stability. While facing all of these, the main focus must be on how to aid each other as we all engage in support ministries to those who are marginalized, those who are in poverty, and those whose basic human rights have been suppressed. The Kyodan has been a part of this effort from the foundation of the EMS in 1971, as we work under the motto of the organization, “We can do nothing on our own, as we are simply a part of the great ‘Missio Dei’ of God….We must continue to build up the networking and cooperation of those who are part of the EMS.” (Tr.TB)

by Akiyama Toru, general secretary

教団新報EMS総会報告

ドイツを中心とした世界宣教団体「連帯福音宣教会」(EMS)の2年ごとの総会が2020年11月12日(木)〜14日(土)、ZoomによるVideo会議として行われた。時差に併せて日本時間では16:00〜21:00の時間帯となり、参加者はドイツの各州教会の代表者、スイス、南アフリカ、ガーナ、ヨルダン、イスラエル、インド、インドネシア、韓国、日本の各教会からの代議員、バーゼルミッション(スイス)、DOAM,などのミッション団体等で総勢70名程の会議となった。教団からの代議員として秋山が自宅から参加した。

・今回は、会の始めに特にセクシャルハラスメント防止のためのCode of Conduct(行動規範)が制定され、それに基づいてこの会議のためにオンブス・パーソンが2名決められた。会議中のハラスメントの訴えの受付機関である。国際会議において懸念されるセクシャルハラスメントに関する規範であるが、これはWCCなどでも用いられているもので、教団としても、基本的な考えや施行方法について参考にしたい。

・EMSの会合では期間中ただビジネス・トークだけで終始すするのではなく、基調講演や祈り、Bible Sharing の時間が設けられており、いつも学ばされる。今回の基調講演はシャチアナタン・クラーク博士(ワシントンD.C.にあるウェスレー神学大学の宣教学教授・インド人)による講演「自由を得させるためにキリストはわたしたちを解放された」、また、小グループでのBible Sharingでは、ルカによる福音書4:18−19を読みそれぞれの受け取ったことを分かち合う時間、また参加者それぞれのおかれた状況、特にコロナ禍の状況を各国の教会がどのように受け止め、過ごしているかについての分かち合いの時が設けられた。Zoomを使って小グループの話し合いが出来ることを始めて経験。

・今総会の最大のテーマは、全世界に広がるコロナ・パンデミックにEMSはどのように対応し、福音宣教の連帯の働きを保持し継続させるかをめぐってであった。まず、総会やミッション・カウンシルをビデオ会議で行えるようにすることやこの会議での決議を公式な決議とすることが出来るようにする規則改定案を決議した。更に、2018年—2019年度の会計報告と2021/2022年度予算案と人材配置案、各メンバーの会費割り当てについての審議が行われた。EMSの主要な財政的な担い手はドイツの州教会からの会費と募金に負うところが大きいが、教会税に依存するドイツ各州教会はコロナの猖獗により2020年度以降の収入は大幅な減収となる見込みで、これにどのように対応するか、人件費や運営費の大幅削減を図らなければならないという切実な現実に直面しており、機構の改訂・整理や他の宣教団体との連携・合同などが必要になる。どの程度の減収になるかは予測できないので、予算案と執行の修正する権限をミッション・カウンシルと財務委員会に与えることを決議した。

・このほか、EMSの向こう5年間の活動計画”Free for the Future”について、などの審議や、新規加入申し込みのあった北インド教会と、西スラウェシ福音教会(インドネシア・The Evangelical Church of West Sulawesi(GKSB))の加入を承認した。

EMSはヨーロッパ、アフリカ、中近東、東南アジア、東アジアをカバーする国際的な福音宣教団体として、現代世界から求められる宣教課題を、気候変動に対応するエコロジカルな持続性の確保、コロナ・パンデミックによって生じる経済的・社会的格差の広がり、民族、宗教間の紛争、国際関係の分極化に抗して経済的・社会的な公平性、安定性の確保、これらの課題に直面しながら、特に、権力を持たない傷つけられやすい人々、貧しい人々、周辺に押しやられている人々の権利を守るための援助活動を連帯しつつ取り組むことを主眼としており、日本基督教団も1971年EMS創立以来その一員に加えられている。「我々だけで何かが出来るのではない。大きな『神の宣教』(”Missio Dei”)の働きの一部を担うに過ぎない。・・・EMSは今与えられているネットワークと協力の働きを更に進展させ根付かせなければならない」とのモットーの下での働きである。

【December 2020 No.408】Recipients of United Church of Canada Donation Named

At the beginning of 2020, I was told by Global Mission Personnel Secretary Patti Talbot of the United Church of Canada that the church had disposed of a missionary property it owned in Japan and planned to donate funds to the Kyodan and other related bodies. Secretary Talbot intended to visit Japan in March to discuss the details, but her trip was canceled due to the corona virus. In June, Kyodan hosted a meeting via Zoom to share how, as much as possible, the various donated amounts could be used in ways of UCC’s intentions. We already understood these intentions to some degree since the United Church of Canada has historically maintained a supportive relationship, through prayer, of the Buraku Liberation Center and the Center for Minority Issues and Mission; but fortunately, through the meeting this time, the desires to be furthered by this donation became more clear.

Receiving advice from UCC missionary Robert Witmer, a plan was developed to designate use of the donated funds in four directions.

1. The Kyodan’s mission program. (1) Aid for the plan to create an Internet delivery studio adjoining the Kyodan Business Office, (2) Aid to continue the joint Canada Young Adult Camp, which could not be carried out this year due to the corona virus.

2. Humanitarian support and race activities. (1) Aid for the Ainu Peoples Resource Center’s child-learning center and the international interchange of indigenous peoples. (2) Aid for Okinawa Christian University’s program for sending a student overseas.

3. The East Asia peace-building program. (1) Aid for the Japan-Korea Joint Prayer Meeting, the Taiwan Ecumenical Forum, etc. (2) Aid for the project of sending and receiving students to other parts of Asia.

4. Rural evangelism. (1) Aid to the rural evangelism councils of the various Kyodan districts. (2) Aid for the Theological Seminary for Rural Mission.

Over a three-year period, the donated funds will amount to 76 million yen. (Tr. RT)

by Kato Makoto, executive secretary

カナダ合同教会のパティ・タルボット幹事から、カナダ合同教会が日本に所有する宣教師のための不動産を処分して、教団その他の関係団体に献金する予定である事を伺ったのは2020年初頭であった。3月にはタルボット幹事が来日して、詳細について話し合う予定であったが、コロナ禍のために中止となった。6月にはズーム会議をカナダ側と持ったが、その目的は多額の献金をなるべくカナダ側の意図に沿った形で使用することであった。カナダ合同教会はこれまでも部落解放センターやマイノリティ宣教センターを献金と祈りで支えてきた歴史があるため、ある程度は予測できたが今回の会議を通じて献金に込められた願いがより明確になったのは幸いであった。

ロバート・ウィットマー(Robert Witmer)宣教師のアドバイスをいただきつつ、4つの方向性を持つ献金使用プログラムが出来上がった。第一は教団の宣教プログラム支援である。事務局に隣接する形でインターネット配信用のスタジオを作る予定である。今年はコロナ禍で実行できなかったが、カナダ青年キャンプも継続の予定である。第二は人道支援と人権活動支援である。アイヌ民族情報センターには子供学習支援と原住民の国際交流を支援する。沖縄キリスト教学院大学の学生海外派遣のプログラムを支援します。第三は東アジアの平和構築プログラム支援です。日韓共同祈祷会や台湾エキュメニカルフォーラム等を支援し、アジアへの青年の派遣と受入れを企画し支援します。第四は農村宣教支援です。各教区が主催している農村伝道協議会や農村伝道神学校を支援します。3年間で献金総額は7,600万円になります。加藤 誠

【December 2020 No.408】Executive Council Reports Show Virus Pandemic’s Effects

The 9th Executive Council meeting of the 41st General Assembly Period (2019-2020) was held on Oct. 26, with the core leadership (moderator, vice-moderator and secretary) meeting together with the executive secretaries and a few of the council members at the Kyodan office, while most of the other members attended online.

In his report, General Secretary Akiyama Toru reported that due to the Corona Virus pandemic, it was decided not to publish the 2021 Kyodan Yearbook and that the various reports concerning the 41st General Assembly Period would cover a two-year period, with the extended year being handled as an appendix. The Kyodan office will not be hiring any new personnel, and due to the financial situation, the bonuses provided for the executive secretaries were reduced. Likewise, he reported that a studio concept is being considered with which to produce YouTube and other such productions for youth evangelism.

In the report on the Committee for Reviewing the System of Clergy Development, chairperson Sugahara Tsutomu presented a three-page document entitled “A Discourse on Clergy in the Kyodan,” which explains the debate about the status of clergy. In response to various questions, Sugahara stated that this document “isn’t something that deals with all of the issues surrounding the status of clergy but is for the purpose of coming to an agreement on the most important parts related to it in the Confession of Faith and the Church Constitution.”

Agenda items related to finances included a second revision of the 2020 fiscal year budget, as well as the 2021 budget. Uda Makoto, chairperson of the Commission on Finance, reported that most of the meetings were conducted online and that cuts to the summer bonuses of the general secretary and executive secretaries, along with the 10% reduction in assessments from the districts had been actualized. Since the districts were unable to utilize the money in the evangelism fund for 2020 for that purpose, due to the restrictions of the pandemic, the remainder of those funds are expected to be returned.

The discussion that took up the most time during the Executive Council meeting concerned the Kyodan Board of Publications. Secretary Kumoshikari Toshimi reported that in order to improve the operations and finances of the Board of Publications, a “Board of Publications Operations Improvement Team” was established and an outside consultant by the name of Kato Masasumi, who is an expert in the field, has been added to that team. The approximately 1.3-million-yen expense for the consultant will be paid from the Executive Council budget. (Tr. TB)  —Kato Makoto, executive secretary

第41総会期第9回常議員会報告

加藤 誠

第41総会期第9回常議員会が2020年10月26日、三役、総幹事、幹事、一部の常議員が教団事務局に集まり、多くの常議員はオンラインで出席して開催された。総幹事報告において秋山徹総幹事は、コロナ禍の対応の一環として「2021年度版教団年鑑」を休刊とし、41総会期の諸報告は1期2年の活動報告を行い、延期された1年については「補遺」を考えていることを報告した。教団三局については職員の新規採用は行わず、コロナ禍の財政状況に鑑み、幹事の一時金を減額したこと、青年伝道についてはユーチューブ等で発信するスタジオ構想を検討していることを報告した。教師養成制度検討委員会の報告では、菅原力委員長が、教団の教師論を定義した3ページにわたる文章「日本基督教団の教師論」を報告した。様々な質問を受け菅原委員長は、この文章は「教師をめぐる諸問題を反映するものではなく、信仰告白・教憲が記す一番大事な部分を共有するためのもの」と述べた。

財務関連の議案は2020年度第2次補正予算、2021年予算が取り扱われた。宇田真予算決算委員長は、多くの会議がオンラインで行われ、総幹事及び幹事の夏の一時金減額により、各教区からの負担金10%減が実現したことを報告した。2020年度の伝道資金運用については、コロナ禍の影響で各教区の伝道資金を用いた活動が行えず、執行残金が返金されることが予想される。今回の常議員会で一番時間を割いたのは、「日本基督教団出版局の件」であった。雲然俊美書記は出版局の事業及び財務の改善に関して外部専門家を加えた「出版局経営改善検討チーム」を設置し、加藤真澄に経営コンサルタントの業務を依頼することに至ったことを報告した。外部委託費用は約130万円で常議員会費から支出される。(加藤誠)

 

【December 2020 No.408】Christmas Greetings from Paraguay

“Feliz Navidad.” Brothers and sisters in the Lord, I bring you midsummer Christmas greetings from Paraguay! Paraguay is in the Southern Hemisphere, where the seasons are exactly the opposite of Japan so Christmas is in the height of summer, and Easter is in the Fall. We made the advent wreath while sweating in the heat of summer last November. I keenly sense that the seasons of the Bible are those of the Northern Hemisphere.

The year 2020 was one of ordeals. The believers from the Colonia Yguazu and Colonia Fram immigrant areas came together for Christmas worship in 2019, welcoming 2020 with joy. From January through February, I returned to Japan temporarily, holding first-year work-report meetings in churches here and there, with many people hearing about the mission work in Paraguay. I returned, enveloped in great joy, and reported on the work in Japan to the people in Pirapo Church, and we had just reopened worship services when all meetings, including missionary work, were prohibited from the middle of March to control the spread of the corona virus.

As a general rule, people were not permitted to go out, and I heard that anyone doing so unnecessarily and non-essentially would be given a large fine, so I went out for nothing other than food shopping. Online live services were out of question as there were some who didn’t have smartphones. I could not take anything to the believers or go to meet them, and we were completely unable to engage in church activities. I was confined only to the church, and two weeks after worship services were suspended, I began to confirm the current condition to believers on Saturday by phone and via the SNS (Social Networking Service) and also announce the weekly Bible passage. I have continued to communicate this way every week to the believers living far away from Pilas even after worship services reconvened.

From the middle of June, regulations for going out were revised; mission work involving under 50 persons became possible; and worship services reconvened. That was the one-year anniversary of the church building’s dedication, and we sensed God’s deep compassion. During the worship service, the windows and doors were left open and we used fans, but at times during the winter months of July and August, we were cold. The restrictions about elderly people going out still continues, and to prevent infection within families, those who have an elderly in the family couldn’t come to church neither. On the first Lord’s Day in November, the few who had been unable to attend services came to their first worship service in a year and were able to share Communion together.

It is said that the increase in the rate of infection has slowed down somewhat, but the situation does not allow for predictions. From Oct. 20, the International Airport was reopened, and regular airlines have begun to fly; but returning to Japan is a concern because many infected people may be in the area where passengers change planes.

The corona virus infection still continues, and during the summer there is also a rise in the danger of Dengue Fever. I am confined within the church, and gazing up at the sky everyday, I have come to realize deep within my heart that there is only One upon Whom I can depend.

“The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” (Psalm 18: 2) “I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.’ (Psalm 121:1-2)

Christmas teaches me to depend only on the Lord. I am praying for a great blessing for all of you. (Tr. RT)

by Ehara Yukiko, Kyodan missionary

Pirapo city, Paraguay

主に在る兄弟姉妹の皆様   ¡Feliz Nividad! 盛夏のパラグアイから、クリスマスのご挨拶を申し上げます。パラグアイは南半球にありますので、季節が日本と逆になり、クリスマスは夏の盛り、イースターは秋になります。昨年は11月に汗を流しながらアドベントクランツを作りました。聖書の季節が北半球のものであることをしみじみと感じます。

2020年は試練の年でした。2019年のクリスマスは、イグアス移住地やフラム移住地の信徒の方々も集って共に礼拝を守り、喜びのうちに2020年を迎えました。1~2月には一時帰国してあちこちの教会で1年目の報告会を開催し、たくさんの方々がパラグアイの宣教報告を聞いてくださいました。大きな喜びに包まれて戻り、ピラポ教会の方々に日本での活動報告をし、礼拝を再開した矢先、コロナウイルス対策で、3月半ばから宗教活動を含む全ての集会が禁止されました。

外出も原則禁止となり、不要不急の外出とみなされると高額な罰金を課されると聞き、買い物以外は全く外出しませんでした。信徒の中にはスマホを持たない人も複数おり、オンライン礼拝は考えられませんでした。また、信徒の方々に何かを届けたり会いに行ったりすることもできず、教会の活動が全くできなくなりました。ただ教会に閉じこもって過ごしましたが、礼拝が中止となってから2週間後、土曜日に電話とSNSで現状を確認してその週の聖書個所を伝え始めました。礼拝を再開してからも、ピラポから遠くに住む信徒の方々に毎週連絡し続けています。

6月半ばから外出規制が緩和されて50人以下の宗教行事が可能になり、礼拝を再開しました。その日は献堂式から一年目の記念日で、神様の深い憐れみを感じたことでした。礼拝中は窓もドアも開け放って扇風機を回しますが、7,8月は冬のために寒いこともありました。高齢者の外出は依然制限されており、家族が感染を懸念することもあって、数人が礼拝に出席できないでいましたが、11月最初の主日に1年ぶりに来会し、共に聖餐に与ることができました。

今も、感染者の増加速度がやや鈍ったと言われますが、予断を許さない状況です。10月20日から国際空港が再開して定期航空便が飛び始めましたが、日本に帰るためには、感染者が多い地区での乗り換えが必要になるため、帰国するのも心配です。

コロナウイルスの感染は続き、夏にはデング熱の危険も高まります。教会に閉じこもって天を仰ぐ毎日ですが、このような大きな困難の時こそ、頼る方はただお一人であることを心の底から思い知らされています。

「主はわたしの岩、砦、逃れ場/わたしの神、大岩、避けどころ/わたしの盾、救いの角、砦の塔。(詩編18編)」「目を上げて、わたしは山々を仰ぐ。わたしの助けはどこから来るのか。わたしの助けは来る/天地を造られた主のもとから。(詩編121編)」

ただ主に頼ることを教えられるクリスマスです。皆様に大いなる祝福を祈ります。

【April 2020 No.407】Executive Council Focuses on Structural and Financial Issues

The sixth Executive Council meeting of the present 41st General Assembly Period was held Feb. 3-4 at the Kyodan headquarters, with 28 of the 30 members in attendance. Executive Secretary Akiyama Toru reported that the Kyodan will cooperate with the operations of the Multi-Faith Center of the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Chaplaincy as the chair of the Japan Confederation of Christian Churches.

 

The 2018 Disaster Relief Response Committee detailed its relief efforts following the northern Osaka earthquake, the western Japan floods, the Iburi Tobu Earthquake in Hokkaido, and on the damage caused by Typhoons 21 and 24. By the end of January 2020, a total 39,210,000 yen was received to support those efforts. Next, Sugahara Tsutomu, chair of the Council for Reviewing the System of Clergy Development, reported on his visit to Kyushu District to discuss the issue of two levels of ordination for clergy, with final consideration to be made by the Council.

Purpose and Plan for Kyodan Restructuring

Then, Kuze Sorachi, chairperson of the Subcommittee on Structural Reform in the Kyodan, gave an overview of the purpose of structural reform, clarifying the efforts to address the looming financial crisis in the Kyodan and laying out a road-map for how to reduce Kyodan expenditures and local church apportionments so as to help in the maintenance and growth of local churches. Specifically, the expenses related to general assemblies would be curtailed by reducing the number of delegates from the present 400 to 216 and changing the venue from a hotel to a church. This would reduce that expenditure from 22,400,000 yen to 6,800,000 yen. Likewise, Executive Council membership and activities would also be reduced, with Executive Council membership being reduced from 30 to 15, and Executive Committee membership being reduced from 10 to 5.

In the proposed Kyodan organizational structure, a Board of Evangelism and a Board of Church Affairs would be formed. The Board of Evangelism would oversee related activities, establishing short-term committees as needed and coordinating voluntary organizations while reducing standing committee and meeting expenses. The Board of Church Affairs would oversee the Department of General Affairs, the Department of Finance and the Department of Clergy Affairs, and the newly named Department of External Affairs (which would deal with world mission relations and ecumenical ties both overseas and in Japan, along with interactions with other religious bodies).   The Chairperson of the Commission on Ecumenical Ministries, however, did express an opposing opinion about the new name, “Department of External Affairs.”

Board of Publications’ Financial Concerns

Much of the deliberations on the second day were taken up with reports relating to the Board of Publications. In his report, Board of Directors Chair Yamakita Nobuhisa described how the Board of Publications has been dealing with the red ink experienced since 2014, mostly due to personnel costs. Ii Hikari, representing the head of the Board, reported on efforts to resolve the approximately 13 million yen of royalties that still must be paid out and to reduce the 9-million-yen cost of storing publications.

Kyodan Secretary Kumoshikari Toshimi also touched on the written opinion submitted by the Auditing Committee to  Moderator Ishibashi  concerning the finances of the Board of Publications. This document urges the Kyodan to take decisive action to rectify the financial crisis of the Board of Publications, as its available funds in the bank are less than the money owed to the bank. It was decided that the directors of the Board of Publications would meet together with the Executive Council and the Kyodan Board of Directors to consider how to stabilize the finances and operations of the Board of Publications. (Tr. TB)

—Kato Makoto, executive secretary

第41総会期第6回常議員会報告

第6回常議員会が2月3,4日、教団会議室にて30名中28名出席で行われた。総幹事報告で秋山徹総幹事は、「東京オリンピック選手村の多宗教センターの運営に、日本キリスト教連合会の議長教団として協力することになった」と報告した。2018年諸災害救援対策員会の報告では、大阪北部地震、西日本豪雨、胆振東部地震、台風21,24号被害の支援状況のほか、1月末までに3921万円の献金がささげられている事が報告された。教師養成検討委員会報告では、菅原力委員長が2種教職制について検討してきたことを九州教区に報告し意見を聞いたこと、委員会としての検討は終了することを報告した。久世そらち教団機構改定小委員会委員長は、「協議の概要」で機構改定の目的を、教団財政の将来的危機に向けての緊急対策と明示し、教団の経費削減は各教会の負担金減となり教会の維持と成長を導くと改定検討作業の道筋を示した。具体的にはまず教団総会費用を見直し、教団総会議員数を現行の400名から216名とし、会場をホテルから教会に変更する。2240万円の出費を680万円に抑えられると算出。総会期中の活動も常議員数を現行の30名から15名、常任常議員数も10名から5名に縮小する。「機構図案」では教団組織として、伝道局と教務局を設置する。伝道局は各活動の実施に際して時限的実行委員会の設置や自主活動団体との連携を通して常設委員会数を減らし、会議費用等を縮小する。教務局に総務部、対外部(世界宣教に関する働きと、国内諸教派や多宗教との渉外を担当)、財務部、教師部を置く。ただし、世界宣教委員会長からは「対外部」という名称には反対の意見があった。

二日目午前の議事は出版局関連の報告に多くの時間が割かれた。山北宣久出版局理事長が現状を報告。2014年度より人件費が原因で赤字が続いており、その圧縮に取り組んでいる。飯光局長代行は約1300万円の未払い印税の解消と、年間約900万円を要する倉庫費の圧縮に取り組んでいることを報告した。雲然俊美書記は監査委員会から教団議長宛に出された出版局の財務状況についての緊急意見書に触れた。出版局の現預金残高が銀行借入残を下回っていることを危惧し、出版局財政を抜本的に改善する速やかな施策を執行するよう教団の果断な指示を求めるものである。これを受け、今後の出版局の事業展開と経営安定化を目指して出版局理事会、常議員会、教団責任役員会の三者で対策を講じることが決定された。加藤誠

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