Years Message for
An Abundant Communion
Brothers and Sisters of Saitama Diocese – A Very Happy New
In Saitama Diocese, at many of
people of various nationalities are becoming one, and are joyful that
they are able to receive together one Holy Communion. I am
thankful from my heart to God and everyone, that we have grown much as
a multi-national church and that, we have given practical form to our
being the family of God (1). The Liturgy of Thanksgiving designates as
a prerequisite, that communion already exists among us (2).
gradual actualization of an abundant communion among ourselves at Mass
indicates, that in our daily life and in the life of our Church, we
have already come to have a deep communion between us, as brothers and
sisters. As your Bishop, through the occasion of my pastoral visits and
other opportunities, it has become possible for me as well, to deepen
my communion with even more people.
The corner stone (3) of our communion is
Christ・Jesus. Jesus gave precedence to walking among the sick
poor people, and with those people who suffered discrimination, thereby
making an abundant communion with them a reality (4). We need to learn
to walk in the same way as Jesus did, with those who suffer troubles
alone, with those who are isolated and lonely, with those who for
various reasons are not able to partake in basic communion with others,
so that through encounters with people who have been marginalized by
society, and through our call to communion with them, it may become
possible for our communion to become more deeply spiritual and abundant.
This year it is ten years, since as a Diocese, we
have interaction with other Asian countries (Offerings for the Table of
Jesus). Furthermore, there has been much involvement with
Akatsuki no Mura, Easter Village, Furanshisuko no Machi, Seui Home
etc., and there has also been the activities of Open House, visiting
the sick and the elderly, movements for the handicapped, visits to the
Ushiku Detention Center, and support for migrants etc., all of which
many encounters, have come to make our Church, more abundant. All of
these many activities could be said to be the Diocese walking in
imitation of the way that Jesus walked. I feel proud of all
these activities in which you are involved. I ask that these
activities be even further developed, that even more people become
involved at many different places, and that you continue to support
these activities through prayers and donations.
Communion for our Life
During communion at Mass, we joyfully
the peace of Christ, our encounter with Christ, and the blessings of
unity. Two prayers are said just before we receive communion.
is a prayer for the peace of the world (5) the other is a prayer for
the unity of the Church.
As for this earth where we
live, it has become
difficult for a person to live as a human being because of war,
disputes, starvation, poverty, economic exploitation, inequity,
discrimination, and the destruction of the environment. This
certainly not, the kind of earth that we could call peaceful.
are in no way unrelated to the sins and evils of this world. Especially
this year, revisions in the Basic Education Laws are being deliberated
in the Diet, and discussions about amending the Constitution will
probably bring about its materialization. As for us, because
our Gospel values, it is necessary that we keep carefully participating
in this discussion.
At the respective parishes and
as a Diocese we
have been engaged in the Movement for Christian Unity (ecumenism). We
have cooperated in activities in various fields and have moved in
solidarity. But we still have not reached complete unity.
That is why the prayers before
communion, are prayed with a feeling of such pain and responsibility.
“Utilizing Holy Communion for our Life,”(6) means
while we have joy because of our unity with Christ, we also pray for
peace and equality, and renew our determination to work. Our
is to change our own life, to work for peace and equality, and to live
together with people who have been marginalized. In addition, our work
is to pray for unity with our separated brothers and sisters, and to
deepen our friendship with them.
Finally, I have a special
favor to ask
everyone. What I ask is that you pray and cooperate so that
our Church, which has become a multi-national Church, we will give
birth to new priests and religious. We cannot fail to have
priests and religious if we have concrete and real communion.
At present, in Saitama Diocese
we have four
seminarians. This year, two young men, who came from Korea,
take the seminary entrance examination. One seminarian candidate will
come to Japan from Peru. There are also other young people
are thinking about a vocation as a priest or religious. Please pray for
In Saitama Diocese, for the formation
we have the “One Grain of Wheat” Support
are already people who have become members of the “One Grain
Wheat” Support Association, but I ask that many more people
consider becoming members, and cooperate to help us with our
And please, remember to pray for me,
priests and for our religious as well.
May the New Year, be for everyone, a
abundant blessings. I send to you my blessing as well, that we may be
lead by the Holy Spirit.
†May the blessing of
Almighty God, the Father, the
Son and the Holy Spirit be with you all.
December 4, 2004
Marcellino Tani Daiji
1 Ephesians 2:19
2. Pope John Paul II, Encyclical Letter, Ecclesia de Eucharistia
4.John 4:1-42; Mathew 9:9-13; Luke 7:36-50 etc.
5. The prayer used as an addition to the Our Father
6. Pope John Paul II, Encyclical Letter, Ecclesia de Eucharistia,