【April 2016 No.387】Three Missionary Commissioning Services Held in January

On Jan. 7, the Commission on Ecumenical Ministries held a missionary commissioning service for the Rev. Koinuma Makiko in the Kyodan Conference Room. Executive Secretary Kato Makoto officiated, with the Rev. Akiyama Toru, chair of the Commission on Ecumenical Ministries, delivering the sermon.


Koinuma had served at Alto da Bondade Methodist Church in Olinda City in the state of Pernambuco, Brazil until June 2015. From February 2016, she has been serving at the United Presbyterian Church in Salvador City in the state of Bahia. This church is located in a slum area where, like her previous assignment, there is no Japanese presence.

On Jan. 17, a missionary commissioning service for the Rev. Sasaki Yoshiko was held at Komatsugawa Church, where she is serving as pastor. Akiyama officiated, with the sermon being delivered by Kato. She will serve the Cologne-Bonn Japanese Protestant Church, located in Cologne, Germany, from April of this year.


On Jan. 29, a missionary commissioning service for the Rev. Chibana Sugako was held at the Kyodan headquarters. Officiating was the Rev. Yoshioka Mitsuhito, secretary of the Commission on Ecumenical Ministries, with the Rev. Nishinosono Michiko, a commission member, delivering the sermon. Chibana had earlier felt a call to serve in Paraguay and, in February 2015, went alone to Paraguay. Starting in the capital of Asuncion, she looked into the possibility of evangelism in areas where Japanese are living. She then moved to Pirapo, where the largest number of Japanese live, and since August has been serving at Paraguay Pirapo Free Methodist Church. Pirapo Church has since received her as a missionary.


The first missionary assigned by the Kyodan following World War II was to Brazil in 1957. Of course, at that time, there was no organization like the current Commission on Ecumenical Ministries in the Kyodan. With the assignment of two new missionaries to South America, we give thanks not only for the succession of God’s continued mission there but also for the renewal of mission that Christ has enabled. (Tr. JS)



—Kato Makoto, executive secretary


1月7日、教団会議室において 世界宣教委員会主催の小井沼眞樹子宣教師の派遣式が持たれた。司式は加藤誠幹事、説教は秋山徹世界宣教委員長が担当した。

小井沼宣教師は2015年6月までブラジルのペルナ ンブコ州オリンダにあるアルト・ダ・ボン ダージ・メソジスト教会へ派遣されていたが、2016年2月から新たにバイーヤ州 サルバドール市の貧困地区にあるヴァレ リオ・シルヴァ合同長老教会に協力牧師として赴任す る予定。前任地同様、教会周辺には日本人は住んでいない。

 1月17日、小松川教会礼拝堂を 会場にして、同教会主任担任教師である佐々木良子教師の宣教師派遣式が行われた。司式は秋山徹委員長、説教は加藤誠幹事。佐々木教師は本年4月よりドイツのケルン市 にあるケルン・ボン日本語キリスト教会に派遣される予定。


その後、知花教師は8月来、日系人が一番多く住むピラポ居住地に移り住み、ピラポ自由メソジスト教会での説教奉仕を開始し、同教会は知花教師を宣教師として受け入れる決断をするに至った。知花教師は2月中旬、パラグアイ国ピラポ自由メソジスト教会に派遣される予定。  日本基督教団が戦後最初に宣教師を派遣したのは、南米ブラジルで1957年のことであった。勿論今日のような世界宣教委員会の体裁が整っていなかった時代であるが、今回2名の宣教師を南米に派遣するにあたり、歴史を継承しつつも新たな宣教の業を主が始められることを感謝した。 (加藤 誠報)

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