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Visitation Gathering in Japan

Sofía Barrientos Izaguirre, CND and Violaine Paradis, CND

Dear Sisters and Associates,

Greetings to all of you! What a joy to be able to take time to share with you some news of our Visitation 2019 gathering in Japan.

On Sunday, July 21, 2019, we went to Mass with the Japanese CND sisters at their parish church in Tsukuba where they usually go every Sunday.

We walked together to the church. While we were walking, we chatted and enjoyed the surroundings. We listened and admired the quiet, neat streets. The bicycles scared us when they passed near us. However, bicycling is part of their customs and culture.

We were impressed by the welcome during the Mass, the fervor and joy of the people, the words of welcome from the priest, the assembly´s greeting with great reverence, the songs, readings, and intentions in Japanese, etc. Although we did not understand, we followed the steps of the Mass. We were also impressed by the way the Spirit unites us in sharing with other brothers and sisters.

At the end of the Mass, when people approached us, we were able to see the parishioner’s recognition and affection for the sisters.

After Mass, we had a very nice meeting with a group of young foreigners (between 20-25 years old), from the Philippines, Malaysia, and Vietnam. We had lunch together. During lunch, we introduced ourselves, mentioning where we were from, what we were doing, etc. Then, they shared their experiences. It was very interesting to hear about the challenges that they are facing and that they faced when arriving in Japan and to hear of the joys, hopes, dreams, and blessings they find living in the Japanese culture with the sisters who accompany this small community. Most of them are here to help their families financially and to study.

Then we sisters shared our countries’ different experiences. One representative of each province and region explained the situation of her country, what is currently happening (politically, economically and socially). Afterwards, the sisters spoke about their call to religious life. Everyone was listening very carefully.

We said goodbye with much affection and joy, hoping to meet again. We took group photos. When we returned to the community, we were very happy and grateful for this experience.

Many thanks to our Japanese sisters who made it possible for us to enjoy this beautiful experience that we share with you today!

 

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