Christmas Concert

Today we had our main Christmas service, followed by a party and a concert, at Holy Trinity Church, Miyazaki.
It happens to be the birthday of the Emperor of Japan today (a national holiday, which is transferred to tomorrow) but we were celebrating the birth of the King of Kings. Having the main Christmas celebration on the Sunday before the 25th of December is fairly common in Japan, since Christmas Day is not a holiday here.

As he has done for many years, Yasuhide Komaki, an accomplished trumpet player who is the son of one of our congregation who lives in Miyakonojo, brought a large number of other musicians with him to entertain us. Some of them are from Miyakonojo, but a large group are students from the School of Pharmacy at Kumamoto University.

Yasuhide KomakiKumamoto Students
Komaki BandReindeer

We all appreciated their music, and the fact that they had come so far to entertain us.

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve (the last day of Advent), and we’ll have our ‘Candle Service’ with Carols, bible readings and prayers. All in Japanese, except that Rev. Yoshioka has asked me to read from John’s Gospel in English.

On a more sombre note, I see from the Anglican Communion News Service that Archbishop Thabo Makgoba has called for urgent prayers for Nelson Mandela and his wife, Graca Machel. South Africa’s peaceful transition from apartheid to majority rule was due largely to Mandela’s magnanimity. Please include them in your prayers.