With the 100th anniversary of the Young Men’s Association coming up this October, members from each church and diocese, including those overseas, are making efforts toward the event under the guideline “Let each of us bring one new person to worship.” At a time when association members have been proactively working to bring non-Tenrikyo people to churches and dioceses for a “First Visit for Prayer,” the association headquarters (led by Chairman Yoshihito Ando) announced the theme “Bring New Worshipers to Start a Chain of Salvation Work!” and designated the month of June as the “Worldwide Missionary Month” to encourage all members around the world to simultaneously strive to “sprinkle the fragrance from heart to heart,” stepping up their efforts in the lead-up to the 100th anniversary.
On June 9, Association President Daisuke Nakayama visited Brazil to attend the 65th anniversary convention of the Brazil Chapter of the Young Men’s Association, which was held at Tenrikyo Mission Headquarters in Brazil. About 600 members gathered for the occasion.
The Brazil Chapter worked toward their goal of having 1,000 participants in the 65th anniversary convention by sprinkling the fragrance of the teachings before the monthly service of the mission headquarters, spreading the name of God, and reaching out to their friends and families. Also, having made a resolution to have 100 people participate in the Young Men’s Association 100th Anniversary Convention, chapter members are making efforts to invite as many participants as possible to return to Jiba.
At the 65th anniversary convention, President Daisuke Nakayama talked about the main points of the 100th anniversary activities, as well as how we should sprinkle the fragrance of the teachings. President Nakayama encouraged members to explore ways of sprinkling the fragrance that would bring them joy as well as opportunities for salvation work as they work toward the 100th anniversary with even greater momentum, with each individual making efforts to bring new people to worship.
The Brazil Chapter conducted a mission caravan from June 10 to 16 with a total of 50 participants. President Nakayama took part in the mission caravan traveling south for about 12 hours from Bauru, where the mission headquarters is located, to Joinville in the state of Santa Catarina, which is about 670 kilometers (416 mi.) away. In Joinville, there is a missionary house, which was established last year as part of the chapter’s efforts to work toward the Young Men’s Association’s 100th anniversary.
The goal of the mission caravan was to bring new people to worship, and on the afternoon of the 15th an informal gathering was held at the missionary house to provide an opportunity for participants to ask and talk about the teachings in a friendly way. On the day of the gathering, a total of 16 people came to worship for the first time. Two of the participants were people that President Nakayama had spoken to during door-to-door missionary work.
Prior to his visit to Brazil, President Nakayama visited New York from June 3 to 6 and joined local members in spreading the name of God and passing out pamphlets.
The Colombia Chapter of the Young Men’s Association engages in spreading the name of God every second Saturday around Tenrikyo Mission Center in Colombia. The members also hold mission caravans in the city of Cali on a regular basis. Recently there have also been members actively engaging in missionary work in Medellin.
On June 18, 12 members took part in a mission caravan in Cali. The members departed the mission center a little after 9:00 a.m. for a park in front of the city government office. They then engaged in spreading the name of God, gave roadside speeches, and passed out pamphlets. Later, they picked up litter at the park.
The Colombia Chapter has also been making efforts to bring new people to worship through other activities sponsored by the mission center, such as the Japanese school and children’s gatherings.
Two days before the recent mission caravan, the 22nd convention of the Colombia Chapter was held. Working toward the 100th anniversary of the Young Men’s Association, the Colombia Chapter set forth renewed resolutions: “Administer the Sazuke 500 times. Pass out a total of 5,000 pamphlets. Spread the name of God 100 times. Have as many people as possible join the 10th International Hinokishin Corps.”
The Young Men’s Association members in Australia took part in a mission caravan from June 20 to July 5. The caravan, which departed the Oceania Centre (Brisbane), traveled a total of 4,200 kilometers (2,610 mi.) to Sydney, Canberra, Coffs Harbour, Newcastle, and Melbourne over 16 days. Utilizing churches and fellowships in local areas as bases, the members engaged in missionary work in efforts to bring first-time worshipers to the local churches and fellowships.
This activity was an effort made by the Australia Chapter to take part in the June “Worldwide Missionary Month” in hopes of being in accord with the intentions set forth by the association headquarters. Chapter members had sent out fliers and handwritten letters to the churches and fellowships asking for their cooperation in encouraging as many people as possible to participate in this event. By the end of June, a total of 20 people had joined the caravan members in spreading the name of God and carrying out door-to-door missionary work.