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

The Legacy of Missionary Anny Buzzell in Tohoku District


But I am among you as one who serves.(Luke 22:27)
by Higashi Joshua, professor
Shokei Gakuin University, Sendai
Anny Syrena Buzzell (Aug. 3, 1866-Feb. 5, 1936) was the second daughter born to the Oliver Buzzell family in Lowell, Massachusetts. Later, in 1877, the family settled in the village of Juniata, Nebraska. Both of Anny's parents were descendants of the Huguenots, early French Protestant Calvinists. Her father was engaged in farming and at the same time participated in evangelism, eventually becoming the pastor of the Baptist Church of Juniata. Anny was raised in this family of burning devout faith and pioneer evangelistic fervor. In the fall of 1884, Anny's older sister Minnie was sent as a missionary to Swatow, China, where for three years she engaged in evangelistic work.
Being strongly influenced by her parents and sister, Anny herself resolved to enter overseas missions. Her first step toward that goal was to study and graduate from Gibbon Baptist Seminary. Then in April 1892, after six years of teaching at an elementary school, she was accepted as a missionary by the American Baptist Women's Missionary Society. Anny was 26 years old.
At that time, missionaries of the American Baptist Women's Missionary Society were working in the city of Sendai in the Tohoku district of Japan as English teachers. It was very unusual for people from foreign countries to reside there at that time. Therefore, these missionaries became keenly aware that in order to accomplish their mission, the cooperation of Japanese women who could directly approach other Japanese women and children was essential. So the missionaries undertook the training of "Bible Women." To do this, they adopted the method of home schooling in the form of a "Christian girls' school home." In other words, Japanese girls were invited to live in the missionaries' home, where education and life discipline took place. By August 1892 the home school had developed into a girls' school called Shokei Jogakkai.
The founder of the school was missionary Lavinia Mead (April 26, 1859-October 9, 1941). Anny Buzzell, who arrived in Sendai in November 1892, became Lavinia Mead's close assistant and the administrator of Shokei Jogakkai (girls' school). At the time of her installation the recorded enrollment was only nine students.
It seems that "Shokei", the name of the school, was taken from the same Chinese characters as those used in the traditional Chinese word "ikin-shokei," a phrase from a classic book entitled "Chuyo" (Doctrine of the Mean [middle course between extremes]) in reference to a true gentleman's refined yet principled habit of wearing a plain and modest cloak over fine brocade apparel. When Anny Buzzell learned this, she immediately thought of I Peter 3: 3-4: "Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight." (NIV) So Anny passionately proposed that this should define the spirit of the school. Thus, this scripture verse came to define the spirit of Shokei Girls' School and has been its guiding principle to this day. In 1899 the Shokei school received official authorization and was formally established with the name Shokei Jogakuin. Anny Buzzell became the school's first president.
As president, Anny not only administered the affairs of the school but also did much of the teaching. She especially put her heart and soul into Bible classes and also teaching the history of Christian doctrine. Besides this, she was responsible for English, music, child care, and lectures on weaving. In all she taught classes 28 hours a week, besides her busy work outside the school that included leading a young women's group, leading hymn singing at church and home, directing more than ten Sunday Schools, and establishing and managing a settlement house called Jieikan where poor people could learn self employment and self support (the skills necessary for financial independence).
Anny never took a summer vacation but stayed at the school all summer while doing visitation evangelism and bringing comfort to sick people and to wounded soldiers returning from the wars in China and Russia wars. Thus, she truly put into practice a life of service.
One more thing I want to record about her life concerns a Bible class for high school boys, which Anny led. For 27 years, from 1893 until 1919, Anny Buzzell led a Bible class for the young men studying at Kyusei) Niko High School. Beginning with one-to-one Bible study, the number of students increased, and many went on to receive baptism. This Bible class produced many pastors, college professors, Diet members, and other gifted men who influenced the modernization of Japan.
Among these influential men was Yoshino Sakuzo, who became a professor of political science at Tokyo University and whose name was synonymous with Taisho democracy doctrine. He published a thesis in 1916 (year 5 of Japan's Taisho Era), which stated that "Though Japan holds to the emperor system, politics is for the people" and proposed popular elections. Many people supported what he promulgated, and in 1925 Japan's first law establishing universal suffrage was approved and adopted. Clearly the teaching of Anny Buzzell was at the root of the thinking of Yoshino Sakuzo and many of her other students about this issue. In 2003, Shokei Jogakuin became a coeducational institution called Shokei Gakuin University, and it continues to develop in the direction set by Anny Buzzell. (Tr. GM)
 アンネー・ブゼル(Anny Syrena Buzzell,1866.8.3-1936.2.5)は、父オリバー(Oliver)の次女として、マサチューセッツ州ローエル市に生まれた。その後、一家は1877年、ネブラスカ州のジュニアタに定住した。両親は、ユグノー派(フランスのカルヴァン派の新教徒)の家系の出身であった。父は農業に従事するとともに、伝道にも参加し、のちにジュニアタのバプテスト教会牧師となった。
 1892年という年は、日本では明治25年である。この頃、東北地方の仙台では、米国バプテスト外国伝道協会から派遣された独身女性宣教師たちが、英語教師として活動していた。当時は外国人そのものがとても珍しかった。だから、彼女たちは自分たちの任務を十分遂行するために、女性や子どもに直接働きかける日本人女性の協力が絶対に必要であると痛感した。そこで、彼女たちはバイブル・ウーマン(Bible Woman)の養成に取り組んだ。それはやがて家塾Christian Girls' School Homeの形をとった。すなわち、自宅Homeに少女たちを同居させ、教育と生活訓練を行ったのである。そして、その家塾は、1892年(明治25年)8月、尚絅女学会(Shoukei Jogakkai)という学校に発展した。
 創立者は、米国人ラヴィニア・ミード(Lavinia Mead,1859.4.26-1941.10.9)である。アンネーは、1892年11月に仙台に到着し、ミードの良き協力者として尚絅女学会の運営にあたった。発足時の生徒数はわずかに9名であったと記録されている。
 ところで、「尚絅」という校名は、中国の古典『中庸』(Chuuyou)の一節「衣錦尚絅」(ikin-shoukei)からとったものである。これは、「たとえ内側に立派な錦織の着物を着ていても、その上に粗末な打ち掛けを重ねて着る」という「君子の道」を意味している。これを聞いたブゼルは、ペトロの手紙Ⅰ 3:3-4を示して、「この意味をもって学校の精神とすべきである」と熱心に主張した。以来、これが尚絅の建学の精神(尚絅の女子教育の理念)を現わす聖句となって、今日に至っている。1899年、尚絅は正式に設立認可を受け、尚絅女学校(Shokei Jogakkou)と改称された。ブゼルが初代校長となった。
 ブゼルは、校長としての校務を果たしながら、多くの授業を担当した。特に聖書の授業には、たいへんな心血を注いで行った(put her heart and soul)。また、キリスト教教理史も教えた。その他にも、英語、音楽、育児法、編物の講義まで担当した。
 そして、もう一つ特記したいのは、男子高校生たちを招いて行われたBible Classである。1893年から1919年までの27年間、ブゼルは(旧制)第二高等学校(Kyusei-Nikou)の男子学生を対象にしたバイブル・クラスを指導した。最初は1対1の聖書研究から始まり、次第にメンバーが増え多くの受洗者を生み出した。そして、このバイブルクラスから牧師、大学教授、国会議員など日本の近代化に影響を与えた数多くの逸材(talented persons?)が輩出された。中でも吉野作造は、政治学者で東京大学教授となり、大正デモクラシー運動の代名詞となった人物である。彼は、1916年(大正5年)に論文を発表して、日本は天皇主権だけれども、政治は国民のためにあると言った。そして、普通選挙制(a popular election system?)を説いた。彼の主張は、多くの人に支持され、1925年、日本で初めて普通選挙法(a law establishing universal suffrage?)が可決、公布された。作造を始めとする彼らの思想の根底に、ブゼルの教えがあったことは明らかである。
 現在、尚絅女学校は2003年より男女共学の尚絅学院大学(Shokei Gakuin University)となり、ブゼルの遺志を継いで今もなお発展を続けている。

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