The Head Minister Qualification Course One was held at the Home of the Parent from August 27 to September 14. This course is designed to train and nurture ministers (kyoto) who have a heightened awareness of being Yoboku and a strong sense of mission and who aspire to work for single-hearted salvation. This year, 11 participants attended the course: six from Kenya, two from the United States, and one each from Australia, the Philippines, and the United Kingdom.
The daily schedule began early with the morning service at the Main Sanctuary, followed by breakfast, morning assembly, and classes. The classes, conducted throughout the day at East Right Wing 4 of the Oyasato-yakata building-complex, were taught by English-speaking instructors. This year’s homeroom instructor was Rev. Kenji Nakai, a staff member of the Overseas Department.
In the morning, lectures were given on such subjects as The Doctrine of Tenrikyo; The Life of Oyasama, Foundress of Tenrikyo; and the Mikagura-uta, The Songs for the Service. In the afternoon, the students practiced the dance and the musical instruments for the service as well as the ritual procedures. In addition, a couple of lectures were given by guest speakers, who provided their insights into the teachings besides sharing their own experiences in faith. The students also had opportunities to visit some historical sites associated with Oyasama so that they could better visualize the content of The Life of Oyasama.
All the students in the English Class successfully completed Course One and are now registered as minister (kyoto). As of now, two of them are planning to attend the Head Minister Qualification Course Two, due to start on September 27 and last until October 19.