The March Monthly Service of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters was conducted in the Main Sanctuary on the 26th with the Shinbashira presiding. The worship halls and precincts were filled with a great number of followers, including the young people who had come for the Students’ Spring Pilgrimage to Jiba.
The Shinbashira and the other Service performers, having paid respects at the Foundress’ Sanctuary and the Memorial Hall, filed into the Main Sanctuary amid accompanying gagaku music. In his prayer, the Shinbashira first expressed gratitude for the unchanging blessings of God the Parent and asked that the Oyasama 120th Anniversary District Lectures, which commenced in March, would bring an upsurge in the pre-anniversary activities. He then said: “We shall strive for the realization of the Joyous World with a keen awareness that the origin of all the alarming troubles in the world today lies in the way we use our minds toward one another. We pray that You sweep away all evils in this world and cut off the root of illness and of rebellion, so that the world will be truly settled.”
Following the prayer, the Kagura Service and the Dance with Hand Movements were joyously performed, while the followers joined in singing the songs for the Service single-heartedly.
After the Service, Honbu-in Yoshiaki Mihama, head of the Overseas Department, delivered the sermon. He prefaced his remarks by saying that we should first take delight in following the path. “Even though equally longing for peace,” he continued, “we human beings are in a situation of confusion and conflict that is caused by our mutually exclusive ideas. Wars are actually going on, drawing the attention of the world. I have no doubt that God the Parent sees such a world with deep regret.” He then emphasized, “In light of these difficult ‘knots’ occurring in the world during our pre-anniversary activities, now is the time to convey the message of Instruction Two to the world in a powerful manner.”
Rev. Mihama reported that the Oyasama 120th Anniversary District Lectures have been held in 18 overseas countries and regions, whereas Instruction Two is now available in 13 languages. He also touched on the Symposium “Tenrikyo-Christian Dialogue II,” which was held last September drawing important people from Rome to the Home of the Parent. He depicted this as “one true proof that the path taught by Oyasama is spreading to the world.” To conclude, he stated that this path ultimately brings world salvation and heartily urged the followers to take delight in following this path to bring a settling to the world, with both young and old sharing their dreams of world salvation together.