２. View of such Hyakunincho church, looking from outside;
The Hyakuninncho church used to have a Sunday service at the second hall of the women’s dormitory of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (Note 9) where they rent a room only Sunday. When I came to the place, I could not help except seeing the run of event, since there was no reception. For 15 minutes ahead, I made a mind going into the room. In there, a man and woman were studying Bible on era of the Prophets. They said, “You must be from the Waseda church!” They welcomed me. I can felt relax. But I could not find proper seat for me, since desks and chairs were arranged in square and there is no pulpit or Cross.
About 10:30 Am, Pastor Ka came and handed out weekly reports. The pastor
sat down open seat as his like. Attendances became 20 persons in short
while. About 10:40, Pastor Ka said “Well, it’s about time”, and service
Order of a Sunday service was, from the beginning, Prelude, Hymn, Scripture,
Prayer, Offering, Offering Prayer, Report, Hymn, Testimony (preaching),
Prayer, Hymn, Lunch, Response (for Testimony), Prayer, Lord’s Prayer and
Silence Prayer at last.
I could see there, the church service is not just formalism or ceremonial
matter. When the service started, a tense atmosphere was raised, even though
such so easy start. The principle Pastor Ka had a “testimony” (preaching)
entitled “A focal point of Bible located outside”. Scripture was John Chapter
5 “Eternal life”. Before I knew it I became absorbed his talk completely.
– Several paragraph omitted -
At lunch time, member introduced themselves to me one by one. I felt much
obliged, but it was customary for new comers. Self –introduction of each
member was unique. They introduced themselves not by the occupation, but
social movement they concerned now. There were “Monitoring the separation
of religion and politics (So called Yasukuni movement), “Opposing the legal
framework for war contingencies”, “Christianity peace network to realize
peace”, and “Proposing food self-sufficiency”. The Hyakunincho now
actively worked on Japan-stayed Filipinos’ problem also in addition to
There were 6 corporative pastors in the Hyakunincho, one of them is Pastor
Aso. They had own jobs, so, they did not expect any remuneration. Most
of their Job looked like a teacher in school. But one kept a shot-bar.
They might insist on that Mission of Christianity can be made anywhere
First uniqueness is symbolized to specify no pulpit. All are sitting round
at desks arranged in square (Note 11). I felt they are going to say, “All
people are equal under the eyes of God. Church service should be participated
by all and not one-way preaching.” That’s why, they have testimony instead
of one-way preaching, and they made response to the testimony important.
Second uniqueness is they have lunch within Sunday service schedule. They
gathered here with lunch box. I heard that they try to establish a communal
society bonded together through eating at the same dining table. I can
understand well this point, since Bible also put high value on taking a
meal together. ---
I asked to Pastor Ka, “How many members do you have?” He replied, “Who
knows exactly? Might be approximately 60 including one shown up once a
year.” Easygoing way, I thought, but I’d like come back someday in future.
(Written by Mr. Koichi Yanasita in “Boro” No.218 of the Waseda church on
2002, entitled as “Visit to the Hyakunincho Church”)