Many Followers of the Path Return to Jiba to Celebrate Oyasama’s 226th Birthday

On April 18, the Oyasama Birth Celebration Service was conducted to commemorate the everliving Oyasama’s 226th birthday in the Main Sanctuary and the Foundress’ Sanctuary of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters with Successor-Designate Daisuke Nakayama presiding as chief officiant. Many followers of the path returned to Jiba from various parts of the world out of a yearning for the everliving Oyasama.

At 9:35 a.m., Rev. Daisuke Nakayama and other Service performers left the Staff Quarters and proceeded to the Main Sanctuary after paying their respects at the Foundress’ Sanctuary and the Memorial Hall. In the meantime, the Shinbashira—who is recuperating—proceeded to the Main Sanctuary from the north side of the East Corridor to join in worshiping together inside the partition bars in the South Worship Hall.

In the Service prayer, Rev. Daisuke Nakayama said: “As we are in the midst of the ‘three years, one thousand days’ period, all of us Service performers as well as church head ministers and other Yoboku will take this opportunity today to return our thoughts to the hardships that Oyasama went through over the course of fifty years. We are determined to follow the path of the Divine Model that She demonstrated for us so that we may fulfill our tasks of single-hearted salvation as Her instruments.”

The prayer was followed by the joyous performance of the Kagura Service, after which the Shinbashira and his wife, Harue, as well as Successor-Designate Nakayama and his wife, Nobue, proceeded to the Foundress’ Sanctuary to serve a meal to the everliving Oyasama. In the meantime, the Dance with Hand Movements was performed in high spirits.

Following the Service, Honbu-in Koji Masui took the podium to deliver the sermon. In his sermon, Rev. Masui spoke about the boundless parental love of Oyasama by going over major themes of Her Divine Model. He noted that, although we cannot see Her physically, the everliving Oyasama continues to work for world salvation. He concluded his sermon by saying: “Only when the beloved children are saved will God the Parent and Oyasama be even more pleased. Let us, therefore, bring many people to Jiba by redoubling our efforts to spread the teachings and help save others so that we will bring joy to God the Parent and Oyasama.”

After the sermon, Successor-Designate Nakayama returned to the Foundress’ Sanctuary to read a prayer to Oyasama. After extending words of celebration, he said, “At a time of increasing confusion and uncertainty, all of us followers are determined to strive to push forward with the tasks of the path with which You entrusted us, Your instruments, while basing ourselves on the teachings as a reliable guide for our minds and keeping in mind the happiness of being able to walk the secure and true path.”

The “Joyous Chorus” then took place in the Inner Courtyard, creating a celebratory ambiance. The event was cosponsored by the Women’s Association, the Young Men’s Association, and the Boys and Girls Association.

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