The Joyous Life Lecture was conducted at six venues in Australia and New Zealand from March 1 through 12, attracting a total attendance of 142 people.
Since 2004, the Oceania Diocese has been asking missionaries who have experience in sprinkling the fragrance of the teachings and engaging in salvation work outside of Japan to serve as lecturers. This year, the diocese invited lecturers from the United Kingdom: Mr. Eiichi Kato, Tenrikyo Leeds Mission Station head, and his wife, Mrs. Kaoruko Kato.
Mr. Kato started working for Toyota Motor Corporation after graduating from university. He had worked for several decades in management and held executive positions for Toyota affiliates in the United States and the United Kingdom. After retiring, Mr. and Mrs. Kato opened a mission station in Leeds, England, in 1995. They have been engaging in missionary and salvation work ever since.
At each venue, Mr. Kato started by talking about the fundamentals of the teachings such as the “Joyous Life” and “a thing lent, a thing borrowed.” He also shared his personal experiences on how he integrated the teachings and business management. Mrs. Kato then spoke on the topic of the husband-and-wife relationship, drawing examples from her experiences in salvation work.
For the first time, the Joyous Life Lecture was held in Whangarei, a city located 150 kilometers (90 mi.) north of Auckland. The lecture, held in the conference room of a building complex, drew 13 people, including a Maori Tenrikyo family and their relatives.
In Perth, the capital of the state of Western Australia, the lecture was conducted at the home of Dr. and Mrs. Robin Ghosh, who, like most of the people attending the lecture, were originally from India. During the question-and-answer session, the similarities and differences between Tenrikyo and Hinduism were discussed.
In Brisbane, a city in the eastern Australian state of Queensland, the lecture was held at Tenrikyo Oceania Centre. The lecture was attended by 37 people. During the question-and-answer session, several participants asked the lecturers about sprinkling the fragrance of the teachings at the workplace. There were also questions concerning marriage, such as: “Across the world, we are seeing a rise in the divorce rate. Could you share with us the secret to a happy marriage?” Following the lecture, a tea ceremony workshop was held.
Rev. Masafumi Adachi, head of Tenrikyo Oceania Centre, accompanied the lecturers to each of the venues. He said: “At each venue, there were people from all walks of life. They listened attentively to Mr. Kato, who has a wealth of experience in the world of business and started afresh as a missionary after retirement. The Oceania Diocese set the goal of having 200 people return to Jiba during this year of Oyasama’s anniversary. It is my hope that through this lecture, those in attendance were able to become interested in learning more about the teachings.”