The February 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.
In the Service prayer, Rev. Nakayama first expressed gratitude to God the Parent for laying the true path for universal salvation by becoming openly revealed through Oyasama as the Shrine and for thereby guiding us toward the Joyous Life with unchanging parental love. Continuing, he said: “All of us followers will further strengthen our conviction of faith by following Oyasama’s Divine Model as our guiding principle in facing any challenging situation. We are determined to convey the teachings to many people and proactively engage in salvation work so as to spread the circle of the Joyous Life.”
The prayer was followed by the joyous performance of the Kagura Service and the Dance with Hand Movements. After the Service performance, Honbu-in Hidekazu Kita took the podium to deliver the sermon.
After noting how Oyasama’s Divine Model can give us insights into attaining joyousness and spiritedness, Rev. Kita looked back on the impact the COVID-19 pandemic had had on our lives over the past two years. He then stressed that, no matter what kind of situation we may find ourselves in, God the Parent always desires to see us lead the Joyous Life. Now is an opportunity for us Yoboku to take a bold step forward to implement what we have been taught, he said.
Moving on to speak about Oyasama’s fifty-year Divine Model, Rev. Kita said that, while learning about it, we often highlight the hardships She went through, including falling into the depths of poverty and being detained in prisons. After noting how we tend to hesitate about following the Divine Model because of the severity of Her hardships, he said: “She went through one hardship after another. But when we pay attention to what She felt inside, we should be able to realize that She was always cheerful and spirited.” Then, by referring to The Life of Oyasama and Anecdotes of Oyasama, he talked about Oyasama’s all-loving heart and warmth, which we can feel when we look at Her Divine Model.
Toward the end of his sermon, Rev. Kita spoke about how implementing the Divine Model can allow us to gradually become capable of providing people around us with insights into the teachings through the way we live. He concluded his sermon by calling on the listeners to implement Oyasama’s Divine Model, which is full of parental love, in day-to-day life rather than merely know it in their heads.