On November 3, the November Monthly Service took place at the Zuiun-kyo Sacred Grounds Su no Hikari Kyodan Headquarters Altar Room. Combining the morning and afternoon services, about 700 members from all over the country attended.
With the pure sound of the koto reverberating in the solemn atmosphere, the service began. The officiant read aloud the Opening Prayer written by Kyoshu-sama. The clergyman and Rev. Takahara, Regional Director of the Eastern Japan Region offered the pine branch (symbol of appreciation) and all those present prayed the Amatsu Norito and Zengen Sanji. Next, everyone sang Meishu-sama’s hymns and after the reading of the teaching, “Faith and moral teachings,” Rev. Takahara channeled Johrei and a member shared their gratitude testimonial (one in the morning and one in the afternoon).
Standing in for Rev. Shirasawa who was currently travelling with Kyoshu-sama on his official missionary visit to Korea, Rev. Takahara rose to give a greeting. He expressed his feelings of gratitude toward Kyoshu-sama who made us realize that we had unknowingly made the spirit with which Meishu-sama founded World Church of Messiah a thing of the past and said with strong determination that he would receive Kyoshu-sama and Masaaki-sama as the leaders who guide us to a faith to be born anew as a Messiah and go forward together with the two of them wherever they may go.
He relayed to the members Kyoshu-sama’s words, “I am grateful for being guided and nurtured together with all of you in any kind of weather, and from here on too, I newly resolve to move onward in one spirit together with all of you.” He reported on how Kyoshu-sama has literally been on the go. Including Korea, he has been making missionary visits to each region, each district, each area and every church in Japan. And with Kyoshu-sama truly talking face-to-face with the members and for us who are able to receive his invaluable guidance, we have received great strength, hope and courage. And he said, “Furthermore, knowing the essence of Meishu-sama’s teachings through Kyoshu-sama’s messages, and as one spirit with Kyoshu-sama, let us go forward on the path of true faith following Meishu-sama’s example and serving God.”
And with Kyoshu-sama and Masaaki-sama standing at the lead, progress has been accelerating. In order to promote this entirely new phase of divine work, he announced the efforts in Donations of Light. He called on everyone, “From you, I ask to be granted your participation with your sincere service in this new phase of divine work.”
To conclude, he touched upon Kyoshu-sama’s message and Masaaki-sama’s greeting from the Grand Autumn Service. Masaaki-sama had said, “Having visited Germany, there is something that I have even more conviction in. That is, Meishu-sama’s most important teaching, ‘to be born anew as a Messiah,’ Meishu-sama’s good news of salvation is salvation that not just people of Japan but also people of the world are waiting for.” Rev. Takahara also conveyed guidance from Kyoshu-sama who said, “Receiving and responding to the will of God, we aim to be born anew as children of God, as Messiahs, and live with Him in heaven. In other words, we must aim ‘to construct an earthly paradise at the center of each one of our consciousnesses.’ With this aim firmly engraved into our hearts and together with everything and everyone, let us serve in the new phase of salvation that Meishu-sama has shown to us!” He then called on everyone, “As one spirit, let us boldly respond now to Kyoshu-sama’s call,” and a big applause rose from the congregation.
Finally, all attendees sang the song “Goin’ Home” with lyrics set by Kyoshu-sama in sonorous voices.