In Tenrikyo, an effort to convey the teachings of God the Parent to others is referred to as “sprinkling the fragrance of the teachings.” In general terms, it is missionary work.
When people who were saved by Oyasama asked Her what to do in return, She always told them to help save others around them while keeping in mind the joy of being saved. She said that this would be the best way to make repayment for the blessings they received. This is how the teachings of Tenrikyo began to spread to various regions.
There have been different types of missionary work, through which people have sought to make repayment for God’s blessings. The most common is to perform missionary activities while having a job, doing housework, raising children, etc., by managing time and tasks. Those who spread the teachings in this way may be regarded as lay followers.
On the other hand, there are people who were overcome with God’s great blessings and who resolved to devote their entire life to the salvation of others in order to make repayment for the blessings. We refer to them as “people who work exclusively for the path.” Many Tenrikyo churches, which currently number over 16,000, have been established by the devotion of people living in this manner.
Notable among them are those who leave their hometowns with enthusiasm for engaging in missionary work in distant and unfamiliar lands. They are like pioneers who go into unexplored regions and open new frontiers. This tradition has been passed down to today’s generation; a number of young people including children of church head ministers are engaging in missionary work in various parts of the world away from their churches and homes. Also, there are missionary houses in different regions for those who set aside time to focus on missionary work.
From Tenrikyo no kangaekata kurashikata published by Doyusha Publishing Company