Sep 5, 2009

Resounding Michael Jackson

It is September and the season for "UN-DO-KAI (Sports festival)" in schools in Japan. An Junior High School next to our Cathedral is no exception and today is the day for them to enjoy all kinds of sports games while their parents are watching with well prepared lunch boxes for their kids. It used to be held in October when I was a kid. In 1964, the 18th Olympic Games started on 10 October in Tokyo and since then, 10 October was designated as the "National Health Sports Day" by the government. (By the way in 2000, the date of the day was changed to the second Monday of October by a new law.) Maybe because of this National Holiday in October, our generation's mind set was created to think that month of October is the month for sports activities. Well, change in the school calender has made the Un-Do-Kai to move to September recent days. The timing is not the only change for modern Un-Do-Kai but its back ground music to cheer participants. It used be a traditional marching music such as "The Stars and Stripes Forever" by John Philip Sousa. But I am hearing this morning from the Junior High next to the Cathedral exiting music by Michel Jackson. The time has changed.

I just came back from Tokyo for 3 days of meetings in the Bishops' Conference. I attended 4 meetings including 2 for Caritas Japan. Particularly, in yesterday afternoon, we hold an editorial meeting for a booklet for next year's Lent. Caritas Japan has been tasked by the Bishops' Conference to produce a booklet for Lent to provide a material for spiritual recollection for more than 12 years. Since this is the Year for Priests, we will include several life stories of priests in Japan.

I am traveling to Taipei tomorrow till 12 to attend a retreat organised by Cor Unum (Pontifical Council for Human and Christian Development ). Therefore, next posting might be after 12 September. (Photo above is a Japanese government Jumbo jet exercising in Chitose airport in Hokkaido)

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