jounal 3 Taiga Koen

I went to the “New Zion Baptist Church” in August 13. The appearance of the church was very simple (like a red brick residence), however interior decoration was luxurious. “New Zion Baptist Church” was for Black people and there were only Black people. However, they were not conservative, and there was appeared to be no racism. The minister in the “New Zion Baptist Church” was tolerant and broad- minded person and they accepted Japanese who visited their church warmly. For instance, the minister went out of his way to spend time to introduce us to adherents in the church and he said “welcome to New Zion Baptist Church, our friends!!”. Also, he was humorous and very enthusiastic to preach in public. His speech was like a Martin Luther King, Jr and attracted with many adherents. This situation which the minister entertain adherents with preaching is different from religious style in Japan. In Japan, the priest is considered as intellectual, so people tend not to feel close (that means the people hesitate to talk with the priest because the status between them is different).
In the USA, majority of people believe in Christianity, however, in Japan, many people have no religious faith or only when people hold funeral, they usually hold funeral of Buddhism or Shinto. Also, in Japan, His Majesty the emperor is considered as the symbol of the nation, and some people (right‐wingers) believe in him.
In addition, in the “New Zion Baptist Church”, everyone sang many songs (hymns?) during ritual, however, in Japan, people are regarded as adherents temporarily by hearing the sutra which the minister read in the ritual. In other words, adherents in the USA join the ritual more actively than those in Japan.
However, I heard from the local people that the ritual in the“New Zion Baptist Church” is not ordinary in the USA, their ritual is casual and a little peculiar, so, I recognize this experience as broadening knowledge of a part of Christianity in the USA.

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