Tenri High School’s Day Course
The graduation ceremony for Tenri High School’s day course was held in the school gymnasium on the morning of February 22. After presenting class representatives with diplomas for the 409 graduates (223 boys and 186 girls), Principal Shigehiko Iburi addressed them, saying: “The 21st century will be a time when emphasis is placed on the mind. Even little acts of kindness can exert a powerful influence on people. I hope you will impart to society what we in Tenri hold to be the ideal use of mind, which is exemplified by the phrase ‘You are saved by saving others.'”
Next, Honbu-in Tadakazu Yamada delivered a congratulatory address, in which he explained that Yoboku are instruments to construct the world of the Joyous Life. He asked the graduates to sweep the dust from their heart and make their mind clear and pristine and, thereby, follow the path with a sense of responsibility and joyousness so that they might bring delight to Oyasama.
Tenri High School’s Evening Course
The graduation ceremony for Tenri High School’s evening course was conducted in the school gymnasium on the afternoon of February 22. After presenting graduation diplomas individually to the 146 graduates (57 boys and 89 girls), Principal Shigehiko Iburi addressed them, saying: “I hope you will always treasure the things you have studied here in Jiba over these past four years. I also want to encourage you to continue implementing the way of using your mind that the evening course helped you cultivate at your hinokishin posts, at school, in your clubs, and at your dormitories.”
Honbu-in Tadakazu Yamada then delivered a congratulatory address, in which he expressed his admiration for graduates’ efforts in attending school in the evening while serving at their hinokishin posts during the daytime. He also asked them to take pride in having graduated from Tenri High School’s evening course and do what they could to play a role in world salvation.
Oyasato High School
Tenri Oyasato High School held its graduation ceremony on February 23 in the school auditorium. After Principal Mitoshi Nakamura presented the 145 graduates (66 boys and 79 girls) with their diplomas, the former Shinbashira Zenye Nakayama delivered a congratulatory address. “Throughout the past three years,” he said, “your standard high school curriculum has been supplemented by a religious education based on Oyasama’s teachings. How well you learned those teachings will now be put to the test in your daily lives. My wish for each of you is that you will take full advantage of everything you have learned at Jiba during these three years and follow the teachings with firm conviction.” He went on to say: “You still have a long life ahead of you, and there will surely be times when you make mistakes or suffer setbacks. Be that as it may, I hope you will embark on your life’s journey with undaunted courage and with firm faith in the warm parental heart of God, always trusting that God would never do anything to harm you.”
Tenri Seminary High School
Tenri Seminary High School’s graduation ceremony was conducted in the school auditorium on February 24. After presenting the 77 graduates (51 boys and 26 girls) with their diplomas, Principal Motoo Matsuda delivered his congratulatory address to them. Referring to the fact that the graduates of this high school will all be attending either the Junior Seminary or the Daini Junior Seminary, he said: “Today marks a new start in your lives. I hope that you will be braced by conviction and pride as you enter the seminary and that you will become people who can implement the Parent’s desire for world salvation.” He continued: “During your journey along the path, you may encounter difficulties and hardships. To help you live in such a way that will enable you to transform these circumstances into a source of joy, I would suggest that you go through each day with the ‘joy of being alive’ firmly settled in your heart.”
The former Shinbashira then addressed the graduates. He told them: “To ensure that you advance along the path of faith without error, it is vital for you to reflect upon the way you have lived until now.” He also stressed how important it is for them to compare the way they lead their lives with the divine intention presented in the Ofudesaki and the Mikagura-uta. He closed his address by asking them to use the time they spend at the seminary to enhance the faith they nurtured over the past three years so that they might live with complete trust in God’s warm parental heart.
A joint graduation ceremony was held on March 7 for the graduates of Tenri Seminary’s three courses: Graduate Seminary (8); Junior Seminary (71); and Daini Junior Seminary (30). After presenting diplomas to representatives of each course, President Yoshikazu Terada addressed the graduates. Reminding them that Tenri Seminary’s motto is to seek the path and sow seeds of sincerity, he said that the efforts they had made to fulfill this motto had enabled them to nurture the mind of sincerity that brings joy to Oyasama. “Now,” he continued, “you stand prepared to go out into the world to spread the delight of the Joyous Life to those who are yet unaware of the mind of sincerity and thus find their lives filled with problems and anxieties.” He went on to say: “At Tenri Seminary, you all studied together under one roof while being warmly embraced by the deep love of the Parent. I hope you will strive hereafter to follow a path of making repayment so that you will be able to respond to that deep parental love. Each and every action you perform can make a difference in bringing about world salvation. I want you to be aware of that and take pride in it, and then take powerful strides forward with joy in your heart.”
The Shinbashira then took the podium to deliver his congratulatory address. He began by telling the graduates that the time they spent at the seminary could be likened to a period of sowing seeds. He went on to say: “The sort of blessings that will sprout from those seeds, however, is entirely up to God the Parent. The situations occurring around you will not always be pleasant or cheerful situations. Nonetheless, I hope you will maintain a stance of faith that will enable you to accept them as being what God the Parent intends for you and to bring yourself into accord with that intention, for that will help you find joy in them.”