日本基督教団 The United Church of Christ in Japan

Berlin Mission Celebrates its 190th Anniversary


by Ito Mizuo, former Kyodan Vice-moderator


The Berlin Mission was founded in 1824 as a united church of the states of Berlin-Brandenburg-Silesian and Upper Lusatia. It is the organization for overseas missions of the Evangelical Church of Anhalt and is called the Evangelical Church of Berlin-Brandenburg-Silesian and Upper Lusatia (EKBO). Thus, this year is the 190th anniversary of its founding, and the event was celebrated at a conference with its partner churches, which was held Aug. 30-Sept. 2. I attended on behalf of the Kyodan as its vice-moderator.


EKBO has maintained fellowship with the National Federation of Kyodan Women’s Societies since before the unification of East and West Germany and has held exchanges with Japanese youth since 2002. It has also reached out to add the Japanese-speaking Church in Berlin (Akiba Mutsuko, pastor) into its circle.

Last year, representatives from the EKBO visited the Kyodan office as well as the disaster area in Fukushima; later Moderator Ishibashi paid a visit to EKBO. This deepening of relationship between our two churches has been continued through my attendance at the celebration conference.


The celebration was held in a courtyard at the headquarters on the afternoon of Aug. 31, and there were participants from 16 overseas churches with greetings from more than 40 representatives. The interesting thing was that all the church representatives were requested to bring a rock from their respective countries and talk about that rock in their greetings. Often, a long series of greetings gets rather boring, and I think this was an effort to prevent that. I decided to take a small piece of lava rock from the base of Mt. Fuji and shared with the participants how Mt. Fuji symbolizes Japan in so many ways.


On Sept. 1, the plenary session of the conference was held under the theme of “Reconciling the World.” It was on that day 75 years ago that Germany invaded Poland, bringing about the start of World War II, so this was an especially appropriate way to commemorate that event. EKBO Bishop Markus Droege and representatives from England, South Africa, and the Presbyterian Church in the Republic of Korea gave presentations on this theme. In the evening of the same day, there was a memorial worship service held at St. Mary’s Church that was jointly conducted by Bishop Droege and a bishop of the Evangelical Church of Poland, with a Bishop of the Catholic Church giving the sermon. As representatives from overseas churches, we participated in the precession up to the stage in front, as well as in the recessional at the end. It was symbolic of our joint prayer for “Reconciling the World.” (Tr. KY)





ウジッツ(Berlin-Brandenburg-Silesian and Upper Lusatia)の統合州教会Evangelical Church of Berlin-Brandenburg-schlesische Oberlausitz(EKBOと略す)及びアンハルト福音主義教会の海外宣教団体であるが、1824年に創立された。その190年目に当たり、祝賀と協議会をパートナー教会と共に行ったのである。

EKBOは、東西ドイツ統一以前から教団の全国教会婦人会連合との交わりがあった。青年の交流も2002年から行われてきた。また、ベルリン日本語教会(秋葉睦子)Akiba Mutsuko牧師)を交わりに入れてくださっている。




9月1日は「世界の和解」をテーマに協議会が行われた。この日が、75年前にドイツがポーランドに侵攻して、第二次世界大戦開始となった記憶すべき日だからである。EKBOのドレーゲ司教(Bishop Markus Droege)、イギリス、南アフリカ、韓国基督教長老会の代表が発題をした。そして、夕刻聖マリエン教会で記念礼拝が行われたが、司式にはドレーゲ司教とポーランドの福音主義教会の司教が当たり、説教はカトリックの司教であった。我々海外教会からの代表たちも壇上に登り、入退場の行進に参加した。世界的和解のための共同の祈りの姿勢を示すものであった。

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