|The Church gshiph loaded with its Good
News gcargoh set sail navigating its way
through Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, docking
in the various Roman cities to off load some
of its abundant freight and then hoisting
anchor to glide on further into the European
region, then traversing tempestuous waters
in its quest to reach Africa and the Americas.
After many lonesome years, the ship hits
the shores of Asia and finally comes to moor
in the far-east, our homeland, Japan. Now
we too can board this wonderful ship and
share in its blessings of Good News.
However, when I survey my surroundings, a disconcerting feeling comes over me. I find myself pondering that perhaps something very important is missing. I attempt to deny it, surely its not so, but even now near the end of the 21st century, conflicts, hatred and bloodshed are frequent occurrences throughout the world. But what most disturbs me is that even amongst countries with a long background of Christian tradition, the people are continuously fighting each other, eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth. What on earth is happening?
What did the ship of Good News leave in its wake? Numerous splendid cathedrals. Paintings and sculptures. The Church as a large organization. Thousands of volumes of theological works. Not to mention the regional conflicts and battles between peoples and countries. Nor are we to forget the discrimination, the prejudice, the famine, the poverty or the hatred. The Gospel of Christ, the Good News of the reconciliation of Jesus brought us these things?
Something here is not quite right!
But that was how it was after all. Somewhere along the line, we have forgotten to load a very precious package, or maybe it fell overboard somewhere on the journey. Who knows when or where that was?! What we do know is that it was certainly on board the ship of Good News when the disciples crossed the waters at Galilee with Jesus, and later when Paul and his followers were cruising along the Mediterranean Sea It was most surely among the valuable shipment being carted and off loaded by the ship of Good News. So where and when did this happen? How did this occur? We have lost sight of it now, and yet no-one seems to mind. This puzzles me deeply.
We must go back to retrieve this freight that we have mislaid, this vast treasure of Good News. Let us return to the sea of Galilee. Let us turn back to the Mediterranean Sea. Let us try the Patmos Island. This important freight of the Gospel is most definitely waiting to be collected by us. If we do not manage to rescue this valuable package, then the ship of Good News will lose all meaning for continuing its voyage on the world seas at this turn of century.
Setting sail for the new humankind community!
IPCC is meant to be a world-wide Christian action(witness) toward the 21st century which proclaims the gospel of reconciliation to all people of the world.IPCC acts to build the inter-personal Christian community which is made up of individual persons. People are invited to join the Council(IPCC) as a person representing none other than her-or-him-self. IPCC,incidentally,could also stand for Inter Personal Computer Church. Fresh Skins for New Wine!
IPCC Office Chair - Masaharu Asayama (Pastor,Kunitachi-Nozomi Cumberland Presbyterian Church) 3-15-9 Higashi,Kunitachi-shi,Tokyo,Japan 186 TEL +81(0)42-572-7616 FAX +81(0)42-575-5049 E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org