University Division of the Students Training Course Held

The University Division of the Students Training Course was held from March 3 through 9 at the Home of the Parent. Sponsored by Tenrikyo Church Headquarters, this course provided an opportunity for young people to deepen their understanding of Tenrikyo and share the joy of faith with one another. Taking advantage of their spring vacation, a record high of 489 university, junior college, and technical school students assembled from various parts of Japan to participate in this annual course. The participants were divided into 48 groups consisting of about 10 students each. Each group had two counselors, a male and a female, who had been trained in advance.

At the opening ceremony on March 3, Honbu-in Kazuo Nagao, Church Headquarters’ executive board member in charge of this course, encouraged the students, saying, “I hope you will earnestly seek what Oyasama taught us and find out how you should live as students of the path so that you can put into practice the conviction you attain during the course.” From the second day on, the students attended lectures, conducted group discussions, and practiced the dance and musical instruments for the service.

On March 7, the students went to Osaka, Kyoto, and Nara to sprinkle the fragrance of the teachings, which was the main event for the entire course. They sang the Eight Verses of the Yorozuyo while walking to their respective destinations–Senba Grand Church and Mitsu Grand Church in Osaka, Keijo Grand Church in Kyoto, and Umetani Grand Church in Nara. In Nara, they danced to the Eight Verses of the Yorozuyo in front of Nara Prefectural Office on their way to the church. They delivered roadside speeches after lunch and then engaged in missionary work spiritedly for about two hours before returning to Jiba.

On March 8, some students attended the Besseki lecture while others did hinokishin around the Main Sanctuary. The participants also listened to faith experience speeches delivered by eight students and attended an introductory session on the Young Men’s Association and the Women’s Association.

During the closing ceremony, Director-in-Chief of Administrative Affairs Masahiko Iburi delivered an address, saying: “I hope you will maintain your faith and conviction after the course so that you can continue seeking the ‘real’ way of living as human beings.”

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