Apr 30, 2011

Sendai Diocese: Basic Plan for the New Creation

Bishop Tetsuo Hiraga of Sendai diocese, photo above, the most affected diocese by 3.11 earthquake and tsunami, announced on Easter Sunday of his policies for relief and rehabilitation of the diocese.  The policy is titled " Basic Plan for the New Creation."  Bishop has called his priests on 20 April, on the day of their Chrism Mass, and asked for cooperation of priests to implement the plan.

Bishop Hiraga puts three points as his basic principle.

  1. Church as "New Creation (II Cor. 5:17)" aims to cover all the affected area and people as far as possible while it will make intensive effort to be compassionate, encouragement, communion, support and companion to those area and people which will be neglected and forgotten.
  2. We would like to unite ourselves in the Lord while entire diocese would be involved in the process of being a "New Creation."
  3. Whole process of implementation of the plan would be achieved with pain of sacrifice.

Then Bishop Hiraga puts two pillars for the basic plan.

  1. To recognise the activities of the Sendai Diocese Support Center (SDSC) as the main activities of the Sendai diocese and entire diocese would cooperate with the center.
  2. To implement the plan "From 4 to 6 and 45".

The plan "From 4 to 6 and 45" is a support plan among the Catholic communities in the Sendai diocese.  According to Bishop Hiraga, Catholic communities in inland which are located along the National Highway 4 will support and accompany with Catholic communities on the coast which are located along the National Highway 6 and 45.  Thus the plan is called "From 4 to 6 and 45."  Entire Catholic Bishops in Japan have been asked by Bishop Hiraga to support this plan by sending additional personnel for the SDSC and also for the pastoral care in the inland churches of the diocese.  We may discuss about the possibilities to support this plan on 12 May during the Bishops' Conference Standing Committee and also during the General Assembly of Bishops in June.

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