The November Monthly Service of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters was performed on the 26th in the Main Sanctuary, with Successor-Designate Daisuke Nakayama serving as chief officiant on behalf of the Shinbashira. As a measure to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, only the Service performers, the heads of directly supervised churches and dioceses, and head ministers from designated churches were allowed to attend the Service inside the Main Sanctuary.
In the Service prayer, Rev. Nakayama expressed gratitude to God the Parent for becoming openly revealed through Oyasama as the Shrine, laying the path of single-hearted salvation, and thereby guiding us toward the Joyous Life with deep parental love. Continuing, he said: “Assembled before You are the Service performers and other designated followers who are attending the Service in the Main Sanctuary representing all other followers. I ask that You, God the Parent, become spirited by looking upon the way they attend the Service single-heartedly, express their gratitude for Your daily blessings, and pledge to make further progress in their spiritual growth. Amid the ongoing uncertainty, all of us followers will inquire into God the Parent’s intention, contemplate what we need to do as Yoboku, and thereby exert our utmost sincerity in performing our duties.”
The prayer was followed by the joyous performance of the Kagura Service and the Dance with Hand Movements. After the Service performance, Honbu-in Tadaharu Yamamoto took the podium to deliver the sermon.
Rev. Yamamoto began by pointing out that it is important for us Yoboku to engage in the work of single-hearted salvation as the instruments of Oyasama as we pray for world salvation and strive toward the goal of the Joyous Life. Making steady efforts to implement the teachings in our everyday lives will surely allow us to move forward toward the Joyous Life, he said.
He went on to talk about how an anniversary of his church became an opportunity for him to start spreading the name of God the Parent in the street as well as doing litter-picking hinokishin as a way to implement the teachings. He stressed the importance of having courage to put aside human thinking as well as patience to continue upholding the mind that one has settled in any situation.
Rev. Yamamoto then spoke about how continuing the activities of spreading the name of God the Parent and engaging in hinokishin has allowed him to feel the blessings of God the Parent better than before as well as have an increased level of gratitude and of the mind of making repayment. We can only be convinced of Tenrikyo teachings when we implement them and experience the joy thereof, he said.
Toward the end of his sermon, Rev. Yamamoto noted that the work of world salvation begins with reaching out to people in front of us who are suffering from problems and listening to and caring for them. He concluded his sermon by saying, “Let us look forward to the future and implement the teachings starting with whatever we can so as to be able to take steps forward on the path of the Joyous Life.”