Showing posts with label Nagasaki. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nagasaki. Show all posts

Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Madonna of Nagasaki

Our Lady of Nagasaki
As the large Japanese city of Nagasaki with then about 200,000 inhabitants was destroyed by the second American bomb on August 9, 1945, the Cathedral of the city was burned not far from "point zero" in the district of Murakami.   Nagasaki had had a strong Christian community since the 16th century, which had produced many martyrs during the Christian persecution of the 16th and 17th centuries.   At the time of the bomb's dropping, there were several priests and a few dozen faithful in the Church doing penance to prepare for the feast of the Assumption. None of them survived the explosion and the concluding fire storm, which destroyed the city made predominantly of wooden houses.  The parish of the Cathedral then had 12,000 faithful, of which 9,000 lost their lives that day.

The Japanese Trappist Kaemon Noguchi, who returned to Nagasaki after his demobilization, looked through the ruins of the Cathedral to inventory it and account for its property.  There on he found a half burned head of the statue of the Immaculata, which had stood above the high altar.  The statue was hewn in Italy according to the painting of the Immaculata de Murillo.
Cathedral Church Before the War

As Noguchi returned to his cloister in northern Japan, he took the head with him and kept it at him till the middle of the 70s.  First thereafter he brought the finds back to Nagasaki, where he redisplayed in the side chapel of the rebuilt cathedral and it is venerated by the Japanese Catholics as a reliquary.  Here is further information.

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Sunday, March 27, 2011

New Bishops For Japan

Vatican.  On the feast of the Annunciation Pope Benedict XVI named two Japanese prieests as Bishops.  Msgr Eijiro Suwa [63] will be the new Bishop of Takamatsu in the South of Japan.  His Diocese has 26 Parishes containing around five thousand Catholics.  Additionally, the Pope named a priest from the Archdiocese of Nagasaki, Msgr Paul Hamaguchi [62], at the new Bishop of Oita -- also in the south of the Land.  This Diocese contains 26 parishes with six thousand Catholics.

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