Tenrikyo Church Headquarters conducted a prayer service on September 1 for an end to the spread of the novel coronavirus infection and for the recovery of those affected, providing an opportunity to pray in unity of mind and to reaffirm our understanding of the meaning of receiving such blessings. This prayer service has been performed at noon on the 1st of the month as a rule since April of this year.
On that day, as a measure to prevent the spread of infection, the number of worshipers inside the Worship Halls was limited, and benches were available in the area in front of the South Worship Hall.
At 12 noon, Successor-Designate Daisuke Nakayama ascended the upper dais with Director-in-Chief of Administrative Affairs Zensuke Nakata to lead the prayer service. Rev. Nakayama played the wooden clappers while Rev. Nakata used the counter to assist him.
Preceding the performance of the service, Rev. Nakata addressed the congregation.
In light of the current situation where the spread of COVID-19 in Japan has not stopped, Rev. Nakata stated that it is important to perform the prayer service for the situation to be resolved while pondering carefully about what praying for such blessings entails. He went on to lay great emphasis on carrying out salvation work in order to receive such blessings, saying that we may bring forth great fruits of salvation by the implementation of this effort.
Then, quoting the following verses, “Seventh, If you help others who are suffering, // Eighth, I will cut off the root of illness. // Ninth, If you keep your mind determined, // Tenth, Peace shall reign everywhere” (Mikagura-uta II:7–10), he said that, even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, we need to settle the mind and make a pledge to God the Parent to engage in salvation work in addition to praying for an end to the situation.
In closing, Rev. Nakata pointed out that no matter how much we express our gratitude to God the Parent or how much we try to repay our indebtedness to the Parent, God’s deep intention for us may be beyond what we can imagine. He then continued, “As children of God the Parent, we must closely follow the path taught by Oyasama, and although we may fall short in our efforts, we must work diligently in unity of mind so that we can have God the Parent become spirited.”