Japan

A gift of joy from God

Gratitude and joy for the love of God recently inspired two young Jesuits to write a song. Deacon Soo Young Theodore Park SJ from Korea and Scholastic Jun-G Bargayo SJ from the Philippines say the song Kutafuta Mungu (“Finding God” in Swahili) was a gift for them as 2017 began.

The inspiration to compose the song came the night after Soo Young’s diaconate ordination.

New Provincial for Japan Province

Fr Renzo De Luca SJ has been appointed Provincial of the Japan Province of the Society of Jesus. He succeeds Fr Yoshio Kajiyama SJ, and assumes office on March 1. An Argentinian by birth, Fr De Luca enters into his work as provincial with a long history of engagement not only with the Japan Province and in the context of its origins dating back to St Francis Xavier, but also with the concrete issues facing the Society around the world today.

Of giving much and receiving more

The Asia Pacific Tertianship programme includes a two-week Christmas exposure programme during which the tertians spend two weeks with various communities. They offer this joint reflection on the experience.

Understanding the impact of migration on children

Much has been written about migrant workers and their lives and trials working in foreign country.  What is often overlooked, however, is what happens to the children who are left behind by their migrant worker parents.

How do the children cope with the absence of one or both parents? How are these children perceived by a society that still values traditional family and gender roles? To what extent does migration change the idea of child welfare or parenthood?

One foot in the air

One foot on the ground, another in the air – always on a journey to serve God.  This is an image Fr Ross Jones SJ, President of Saint Ignatius’ College, Riverview in Sydney, Australia uses to show what it means for students and teachers in a Jesuit school to be contemplatives-in-action.

The ordeal of a foreign spouse in Japan

Anastasia* is from Latin America. A few years ago, she married a Japanese man in her country and in April 2015, they took their toddler son to Japan to visit his grandparents. While they were in Japan, they took their son for a general medical check-up and found out that he had a heart problem. They went to the United States and Latin America for second and third opinions, but could not decide on the best treatment for their son.

Jesuits in Korea and Japan confront ethnic reconciliation

August is a symbolic month dedicated to peace movements in Japan. Seventy-one years have passed since the defeat of Japan in the Second World War, but the dropping of the first two nuclear bombs on Hiroshima (August 6, 1945) and Nagasaki (August 9, 1945) are still vividly remembered.

A group of 34 Jesuits, half of them from Korea and the rest from Japan gathered in Shimonoseki, in the west of Japan from August 23 to 26 to heal wounds occasioned by the worst historical relationship between both countries and to search for closer cooperation.

Serving the City, Serving the People

Thirty-eight students from Jesuit universities in four Asian countries gathered in Yogyakarta, Indonesia for this year’s Service Learning Programme (SLP), hosted by Sanata Dharma University.  The theme this year - Serving the City, Serving the People: Developing Youth Social Movement within the Urban Communities - was inspired by a growing concern that city development is happening without citizen involvement.

The programme employed the Ignatian Pedagogy Framework of Context-Experience-Reflection-Action-Evaluation.

Between commodity and dignity

Tokyo is gearing up for the 2020 Olympics. While athletes are training hard, the Japanese government is working equally hard to get the facilities ready in time.  To do so, it has recently relaxed immigration procedures to allow more foreign workers to work on the construction of new olympic venues. It has also introduced new regulations for foreign domestic helpers from the Philippines and Vietnam, easing the situation in the previously restricted sector.  With this, sources say that this service industry will be worth 600 billion yen (US$5.45 billion) in the near future.

Living on borrowed prosperity

Asia Pacific has been dubbed the world’s engine of growth, but at what and whose cost?

China has been hailed by the world as an economic success story. Three decades of uninterrupted growth has lifted more than 600 million people out of poverty, and although there are still roughly 150 million people living in poverty in the country, China’s economic success is the envy of the developing world.

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