The New Year’s meeting of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters was conducted in the Assembly Hall following the evening service on January 4.
The Shinbashira delivered his New Year’s address in the Assembly Hall and reflected upon the earthquake and tsunami that hit northeastern Japan last March as well as other disasters that occurred last year. “First of all, I sincerely hope that there will not be any disasters at all this year,” he said. While touching on the efforts of the Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps and local churches, the Shinbashira stressed: “Depending upon the state of mind of those of us who know God the Parent’s intention, it is possible to receive blessings that will prevent such disasters or that will reduce a great misfortune to a small misfortune and a small misfortune to no misfortune at all. Thus, not only should we live each day in accord with God’s intention in order not to let any disasters occur, but also we must, once again, make sure we fully understand that we need to make further efforts to advance our work of sprinkling the fragrance of the teachings and saving others so that as many people as possible will live in accord with God’s intention.” Additionally, referring to his sermon delivered at the Autumn Grand Service last year, the Shinbashira said: “I would like to conduct the 130th anniversary of Oyasama in the 179th year of the Teaching, which is one decade after the previous anniversary. . . . Even though I have just said this, you should be careful not to end up merely spreading my words around.” Rather it is essential, he said, that we reflect upon the current situations we are faced with and strive to work hard to near God’s intention. Lastly, the Shinbashira said, “I would like us to make a conscious effort to ensure we can be shown a world that is even a little more in accord with God’s intention, and I encourage you to work hard so that this year will be a fruitful year.”