Fr. Jerry Orbos, S.V.D.
September 14, 2017
The city of Hirado is located on Hirado Island in the northwestern part of Nagasaki Prefecture. It prospered as a castle town ruled by the feudal lord Matsu’ura. In 1609,...Hirado
The city of Hirado is located on Hirado Island in the northwestern part of Nagasaki Prefecture. It prospered as a castle town ruled by the feudal lord Matsu’ura. In 1609, the Hirado Dutch Trading House was established there, and as the area had an excellent natural port, Hirado became the central stage for trade with other countries, such as China, Holland and Portugal.
Early Western traders were accompanied by Christian missionaries, and the religion gained a bit of a foothold in Hirado and across Nagasaki Prefecture. However, as the religion’s influence grew, the Tokugawa Shogunate responded by expelling missionaries and banning Christianity for more than two centuries. Some Christian in Hirado continued to practice their religion secretly until the ban on Christianity was lifted in the Meiji Period.
Sasebo features the Saikai National Park and houses resorts including the Saikai Pearl Sea Resort where visitors can enjoy cruising through the hundreds of islands, try out pearl picking and...Sasebo
Sasebo features the Saikai National Park and houses resorts including the Saikai Pearl Sea Resort where visitors can enjoy cruising through the hundreds of islands, try out pearl picking and visit aquariumsThe center of Sasebo City is known for its attractive shopping areas, bars, and food influenced by the presence of the U.S. Navy base. The traditional Mikawachi-Yaki pottery town is located about half an hour’s drive from the city.
The city of Nagasaki, which for years prospered as a port of trade with Portugal, was also the window through which Christianity first arrived in Japan. However, in 1587, Toyotomi...Nagasaki
The city of Nagasaki, which for years prospered as a port of trade with Portugal, was also the window through which Christianity first arrived in Japan. However, in 1587, Toyotomi Hideyoshi (the daimyo who unified Japan) decreed a ban on Christianity. This resulted in an incident known as “the execution of the 26 saints”. 26 Christians were rounded up in the cities of Kyoto, Osaka and Sakai, brought to Nagasaki via an overland route in large two-wheeled wagons, and executed at Nishizaka. This marked the first significant incident of martyrdom in Japan and triggered the period of pervasive persecution and martyrdom that followed. In more recent history, Nagasaki became the second city after Hiroshima to be destroyed by an atomic bomb towards the end of World War II.
Tokyo is Japan’s capital and the world’s most populous metropolis. This huge, wealthy and fascinating metropolis brings high-tech visions of the future side by side with glimpses of old Japan,...Tokyo
Tokyo is Japan’s capital and the world’s most populous metropolis. This huge, wealthy and fascinating metropolis brings high-tech visions of the future side by side with glimpses of old Japan, and has something for everyone.
The sheer size and frenetic pace of Tokyo can intimidate the first-time visitor. Much of the city is a jungle of concrete and wires, with a mass of neon and blaring loudspeakers. However, you may also find unexpected oases of calm in the tranquil grounds of a neighborhood Shinto Shrine.
The city’s history can be appreciated in districts such as Asakusa, and in many excellent museums, historic temples and gardens. Contrary to common perception, Tokyo also offers a number of attractive green spaces in the city center and within relatively short train rides at its outskirts.
Akita Prefecture is a prefecture of Japan located in the Tohoku region of northern Honshu, the main island of Japan. The capital is the city of Akita. Among Akita’s main...Akita
Akita Prefecture is a prefecture of Japan located in the Tohoku region of northern Honshu, the main island of Japan. The capital is the city of Akita. Among Akita’s main attractions are its natural beauty of mountains and the sea, hot springs and the town of Kakunodate, which preserves one of Japan’s most interesting samurai districts.
Our Lady of Akita is the title of Marian apparitions reported in 1973 by Sister Agnes Katsuko Sasagawa in the remote area of Yuzawadai, near the city of Akita. The apparitions were approved by the Holy See in 1988. The approval was issued by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who later became Pope Benedict XVI.
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With a brilliant light shining forth, Sr. Agnes Katsuko Sasagawa saw the wooden statue of the Blessed Mother come alive. Although totally deaf, she heard a voice of indescribable beauty speak to her. The message that the Blessed Mother gave at Akita is similar to her message of Fatima: Prayer, Repentance and Sacrifice from the faithful. You are invited to join us on a Pilgrimage to the Catholic Shrines of Japan with Fr. Jerry Orbos, SVD leaving on September 14, 2017. May this pilgrimage bring you to discover an oasis brimming with serenity and peace that can only be found in a sacred place.
Begin your pilgrimage in Hirado. Visit St. Francis Memorial Church built to commemorate the first introduction of Christianity to the Nagasaki region by St. Francis Xavier. Proceed to Yamada Church, which contains the monuments of St. Thomas Nishi and St. Lorenzo Ruiz, the first Filipino saint.
Head for Nagasaki, also famous as having been the second target of the atomic bomb in World War II. En route visit the Oura Cathedral, Japan’s oldest church and national treasure. Enjoy a full day sightseeing of the Christian sites in Nagasaki which includes a visit to Nishizaka Church. Nishizaka in Nagasaki is a major national place of pilgrimage where the first 26 martyrs of Japan were crucified on the hill: Jesuits, Franciscans, and lay Christians mingled in one execution. Stop by the Urakami Cathedral, originally built to serve the many kakure kirishitan (Hidden Christians). Not to be missed is a visit to the Peace Park and the nearby Atomic Bomb Museum where you will find memorials from the Nagasaki bombing on August 9, 1945.
Travel to Tokyo, Japan’s capital and the world’s most populous metropolis. Tokyo offers a seemingly unlimited choice of shopping, entertainment, culture and dining to its visitors. Take time to enjoy the vast array of sights that the city has to offer.
Wind down your pilgrimage with a two-night stay in Akita. Nestled on top of a hill at the outskirts of the city, The Seitai Hoshikai Convent (Institute of the Handmaids of the Holy Eucharist) houses the miraculous image of Our Lady of Akita. From 1975 to 1981, it shed tears for 101 times with more than two thousand witnesses. One of the nuns, Sister Agnes Katsuko Sasagawa, was cured of her deafness during a mass in 1982. Celebrate Mass and spend time in reflective moments in one of the most peaceful places on earth.
Join a Pilgrimage to the Catholic Shrines of Japan with Fr. Jerry Orbos, SVD leaving on September 14, 2017. May Our Lady of Akita usher you closer to Jesus. May the lives of the men and women who have given up so much for their faith, inspire you in your walk with God.
Dear Pilgrim Center: My husband Aldo & I would like to praise & commend our Pilgrim Chaplain Fr. Dante Venus & our Tour Leader Bro. Monty for the very successful & memorable pilgrimage to Italy & the Holy Land we were very fortunate to join on March 26-April 8, 2018. It was very hectic to be sure, but still they managed our time very well that we were able to visit more places than was promised in the itinerary, and we are very appreciative of that. Likewise, the solemnity of the whole pilgrimage experience was still observed despite many of us in the group, myself included, often forgetting that we were pilgrims & not tourists 😉😉, taking photos, selfies, etc. instead of, or before focusing on what the local guide was explaining or on the scripture readings. I cannot fault us pilgrims on this because for many of us seniors, and I speak for my husband & I, that trip might be our first & last time to visit those places, so we made sure they were properly documented. Nonetheless, it was a truly spiritually uplifting & life-changing experience for us. We continue to thank our Lord for making that experience of a lifetime possible. Indeed, nothing is impossible for God! Thank you very much to Fr. Dante, Bro. Monty & to each of us pilgrims in the group for the prayers, love, care & concern shown to each other. Let us continue to pray for and with each other. It is my hope that we meet each other again soon, to strengthen our bonds of friendships. Most sincerely, Leclec CabusoraMs. Leclec Cabusora
I am honored to be included in this pilgrimage. The Pilgrims' Center has very good itineraries worth remembering. No hours wasted. They took very good care of us in spite of our big number of 47 people. The daily mass and homilies of Fr. Manny Cruz held in different shrines and churches were very inspirational and transforming. Accommodations were nice most especially the one on top of the Mountain with an awesome view built in 1909. It's like travelling back in time. I definitely would want to do it again with Pilgrim Center.Peter Joseph Mapua
The Pilgrims' Center always gives you the best. They let you feel like an Executive in terms of personal service & attention especially during pilgrimage. Their choices of pilgrimages and pilgrim chaplains are outstanding. You go back home very fulfilled and immersed...Marlene Silvestre
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