At Church Headquarters’ annual New Year’s meeting held on January 4 after the evening service, the Shinbashira addressed 660 Church Headquarters’ officials, head ministers of directly supervised churches, superintendents of dioceses, members of the Assembly, and committee members of Tenrikyo associations. Speaking on activities of churches in particular, the Shinbashira called on his listeners to make sincere efforts to enable church activities to be conducted in a high-spirited manner befitting Tenrikyo churches.
The Shinbashira began his address by sharing his reflections on the past year, during which Tenrikyo had sought to conducted its activities in a manner befitting the “year for implementation,” as last year had been designated by Tenrikyo. The Shinbashira indicated that there was some concern that Tenrikyo, considered as a whole, might have achieved little else besides bandying about the word “implementation.” He requested that all people concerned, therefore, do their utmost to ensure that this year’s activities would be an improvement on their previous work.
The Shinbashira went on to say that “implementation” is not meant to indicate something that one does because one is asked to do it. He said that it refers, instead, to what naturally happens when churches put the teachings into practice. Observing that there are, nonetheless, not a few churches where things do not appear to be going as expected, the Shinbashira asked his listeners to make every effort to enable the churches to conduct their activities in a more high-spirited manner and thus receive the blessing of becoming the sort of churches that they should be.
With reference to the Head Ministers Seminar in Oyasato scheduled to begin in April, he expressed his hope that this seminar would lead to church head ministers’ greater high-spiritedness and ever more enthusiastic church activities. Concerning the reason why it was decided that head ministers of directly supervised churches should attend the seminar together with those of other churches, the Shinbashira said, “Since we must unite our minds in conducting our church activities, it behooves us to join together in the lectures and discussions so as to enable us to understand one another intimately.”
After requesting the increased attendance of Church Headquarters’ resident staff at the morning and evening services, the Shinbashira concluded his remarks by asking all to work together in a unity of mind.