Shinnyo-en Remembers Victims of the 2011 Earthquake

March 11, 2012
Tachikawa, Japan

On March 11th, the first anniversary of the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, Shinnyo-en observed a moment of silence during that day's Feast of Compassion service at the Ogen Center in Tachikawa, Japan. Memorial services were also held in at Shinnyo-en temples throughout the disaster-hit region. Prayers for the disaster victims will also be the focus this year on March 20th at the Spring Higan Service (spring equinox); the service will be an occasion for Shinnyo-en members worldwide to offer heartfelt spiritual consolation to everyone affected by the earthquake and tsunami.

Her Holiness Shinso Ito, Head Priest of Shinnyo-en, said: "A most pressing need in the recovery efforts--perhaps even more immediate than rebuilding the local infrastructure--lies in mending people's broken hearts. I'm sure those loved ones who lost their lives would want us to carry on and fulfill the dreams they had. In this season of the higan service, when we remember those who have passed away, let us listen to what they may be telling us in our hearts and rise up, resolutely, to fulfill the tasks entrusted to us. In a world that is constantly changing, we can do this by meditating on those that express shinnyo, which is ever-present and unchanging."

The Shinnyo-en Relief Volunteers (SeRV) began providing emergency relief assistance in the first weeks after March 11 and continue to offer long-term support services to the many people still living in temporary housing.