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“Live together and be helped together”


The foreword in the July issue of Ametsuchi

“As a person who is allowed to live between Heaven and Earth, I value the ideas of “Live together” and “Be helped together.” I am mindful of people who suffer from hunger, poverty, sickness and are socially weak. I pray earnestly that all people can live and be helped as Kami’s children, regardless of their nationality, race, or language. And I also pray that true world peace and prosperity will be realized.”
An excerpt of a speech given by our Spiritual Leader, Konko-Sama during a 1995 New Year radio program.

In this passage, our Spiritual Leader, Konko-Sama revisits the meaning of a Revelation our Founder was given by Kami in 1868. “Make and put up a banner saying, ‘May there be peace throughout the world, prosperity in all countries, and safety for all people.’ And pray daily.” The spirit of this revelation is in the content of the daily prayer of our Founder and the successive Spiritual Leaders. It is also a very important concept of our faith and is central to our practice of faith which has manifested in the Konkokyo relief response to the Japanese Earthquakes.
In the Great Hanshin Earthquake, volunteer activities were very successful. Many volunteers and Konkokyo believers visited and took part in the relief and reconstruction activities of the affected areas.
In the Great East Japan Earthquake, using knowledge gained from past experiences; the Konkokyo Youth Association, the Konkokyo Tokyo Metropolitan Supporting Organization for Volunteer of Disaster, the Konkokyo Osaka Disaster Relief Team and many other people joined the relief activities and continue to do so today. It is very inspiring that so many people have volunteered.

These association’s activities are based on the volunteer’s desire to help people in need and from the inspiration of our Spiritual Leader, Konko-Sama:”As a person who is allowed to live between Heaven and Earth.”
This exemplifies a teaching of our founder, “Is it not a real blessing that humans are able to save others? Oxen and horses cannot save their offspring that have fallen into the water. When people suffer from sickness or hardship, they are helped by Kami. Practice faith and remember to be thankful for being able to save people in distress.” We also find in those activities that the core belief of Konko Faith has been handed down through successive Konko-Samas’. By helping people in distress, we are fulfilled and in return Kami-Sama is fulfilled.
“The Konko church accepted evacuees, helped the whole community and has been there for us. The people of Konkokyo have helped us from the beginning till the end. We don’t have the words to thank them enough.” These are the words of a neighborhood association leader in an affected area where our volunteer activities are located. From this description, we can imagine the timeliness and effectiveness of volunteer activities in the time of need. This testimonial also clearly reminds us of the necessity for action in accordance with “Live together and be helped together.”

There was another measure of action last year. The annual “Minister’s Children Gathering” event was held as a study tour in the Philippines. This was in accordance with the strong wish of the late Chief Administrative Director Mitsutoshi Sato, who said, “I hope to have the current high school generation, who will become the future leaders of Konkokyo, feel the hardship of the people in today’s world and to have them take advantage of these experiences to better humanity’s future.”

The high school students who participated in this event were deeply affected by the tremendous gap between the rich and the poor, the lack of human rights, discrimination and so on. Experiencing the Filipino children’s desperate efforts to survive helped the students earnestly realize the meaning of “Live together and be helped together.”

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