Episode 353 – The Rising Sun Will Come to Us from Heaven, Part 5

This week, we wrap up our history of Christianity in Japan with a look at the Occupation and Postwar Eras — and with some final thoughts on what it means to be a part of a faith viewed as “outside” the mainstream of the nation.

Sources

A translation from the Japanese government of the decision in Kakunaga v. Sekiguchi

Seto, Brandon. “A Defense of Faith: SCAP and Japan’s Religious Rehabilitation in the Early Cold War.” The Journal of American-East Asian Relations 23, No 4 (2016)

Okazaki, Masafumi. “Chrysanthemum and Christianity: Education and Religion in Occupied Japan, 1945-52.” Pacific Historical Review 79, No 3 (August, 2010)

Noble, Colin. “Negotiating a Religious Identity in Modern Japan: The Christian Experience.” in Negotiating the Sacred: Blasphemy and Sacrilege in a Multicultural Society. Ed. Elizabeth Burns Coleman and Kevin White, 2006, ANU Press.

Ravitch, Frank S. “The Shinto Cases: Religion, Culture, or Both–The Japanese Supreme Court and the Establishment of Religious Jurisprudence.” BYU Law Review 2013, Issue 3.

Numano, Jiro. “Hasty Baptisms in Japan: The Early 1980s in the LDS Church.” Journal of Mormon History 36, No 4 (Fall, 2010).

Images

One of the Occupation era bibles; some 10 million in total were printed.
An Easter Service during the Occupation.
Posters like these promoted the idea that the Occupation was about religious freedom in Japan even as MacArthur himself seemed to undermine that position.
The Tsu Hisai Municipal Gymnasium. What an ugly building to have such a long fight over.

4 thoughts on “Episode 353 – The Rising Sun Will Come to Us from Heaven, Part 5”

  1. Excellent episode, as always. I learned a lot, especially about the court cases. Can I ask where you got your information about Mormon success in the 1980s? I was a Mormon missionary in the late 1980s, and am interested in reading more quality histories of the movement in Japan.

    1. Your comment made me realize I’d forgotten to put that source in the bibliography! I added it, but for reference, here it is:
      Numano, Jiro. “Hasty Baptisms in Japan: The Early 1980s in the LDS Church.” Journal of Mormon History 36, No 4 (Fall, 2010).

    1. Yeah, I was wondering about it and looked to see if anyone had studied the subject, but I couldn’t find much. My gut says you’re right; it’s a status thing, maybe associated with the higher end elite educations a lot of the political leadership is pulled from.

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