Word for the Month:


Parish Priest


Pope`s Intention for the Month

July 2017:  Those distant from Christian faith

This month’s intention is for those distant from the Christian faith: "that our brothers and sisters who have strayed from the faith, through our prayer and witness to the Gospel, may rediscover the beauty of the Christian life."



Health Talks for Tokyo and Chiba:

A health project of CTIC English Pastoral Ministry in partnership with St. Luke`s International University.  No registration fees to all health talks and zumba sessions.  This is for 40 years old and above Filipinas residing in Tokyo and Chiba.  Pre-registration is necessary for those who wish to join the zumba sessions which will start on August 21 (Monday) 7pm at St. Luke`s International University. Deadline for pre-registration will be on August 7, 2017.  For inquiries, please email at erlynreg@ctic.jp.

Help the Victims of Flood in Peru

For monetary donation, you may send to Caritas Japan`s bank account:
Bank Name:  Yuucho Bank
Bank Account Number: 00170-5-95979
Account Name: Caritas Japan
Comment: “For the victims of flood in Perú”

*When using direct internet service of Bank Yuucho in sending money or bank transfer, insert these 4 digit numbers 6273.
*If you do not want your name to appear in the list to be published in the newsletter, “We are Caritas”, please add three zeros (000) after your own number.

For inquiries, please call Osako san of CTIC at 03-5759-1061.

CTIC`s Office Schedule:

The Catholic Tokyo International Center (CTIC) will be open every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Sunday of the month from 11:00am to 4:00pm but will be closed on Mondays that follow.

2017 Sunday schedules:
January 29
February 5, 19
March 5, 19
April 2, 30
May 7, 21
June 4, 18
July 2, 16, 30
August 6, 20
September 3, 17
October 1, 15, 29
November 5, 19
December 3, 17

CTIC Planner 2017:


The 2017 CTIC Planner that has this year replaced the Kalakbay Planner is still available at CTIC.   It is a good companion to record short appointments and reference to daily Gospel reading.

This planner contains the following:

  • Prayers in english and romaji;
  • Mysteries of the Holy Rosary;
  • The Rite of Penance;
  • Daily reading guide;
  • Japan National Holidays;
  • Church feasts and holidays;
  • List of Catholic Churches in Tokyo-to, Chiba-ken, Saitama-ken, and Kanagawa-ken;
  • Spouse Violence Counseling Support Center contact number; and
  • Emergency call numbers

Talking About Japan


What are the origins of the Japanese language?

The closest language to Japanese is Korean.  There are definite commonalities in the arrangement of the subject, direct object, and predicate.  However, there is no determining evidence that they belong to the same linguistic family.

There are many theories about the origins of the Japanese language:  one of the Ural-Altaic languages; one of the sountern, Malayo-Polynesian languages; a relative to the Indo-Tibetan languages; or one of the Tamil languages.


 Resource:  Talking About Japan Q&A (Third Edition)

Q & A Living in Japan

Period of Stay for Special Residence Permit Holders

How long can Special Residence permit holders reside in Japan?  How does this differ from Refugee status?

Special residence permit holders can stay in Japan up to 3 years, as designated in each case by the Minister of Justice.  The actual period of stay depends on the particular circumstances and is fixed for periods of 3 months, 6 months, 1 year and 3 years.

Indochinese refugees can stay initially for a period of 1 year.  After the third renewal of their status, they are usually granted status of periods of 3 years.

The difference between this status and Refugee Status will be explained in more detail later.  It is easier for refugees to obtain permanent residence.  Furthermore, refugees are issued "Refugee Travel Documents" upon traveling abroad, whereas this is not the case for holders of Special Residence Status.  Besides these points raised, there are no major differences.

"Living with the Japanese Law:  A Guide to Foreign Nationals in Japan (Q&A 101)"

Bazaar Kicks off in some Parishes

Towards the end of springtime and with the advent of summer, several parishes in Tokyo had begun holding its annual parish bazaar.  Other parishes would hold its bazaar toward the beginning of autumn.  Bazaar is considered one of the most popular parish programs that aim to responding to the needs of the poor.  This refers directly to the parishioners` immediate and direct response to the Gospel message of loving and caring for those in need.  They raise funds for a very specific project.  Some parishes raise funds to be sent to certain mission in developing countries in Asia and Africa.  Other parishes would raise funds for scholarship program and other charitable purposes.  Still others try to fund raise to generate some cash for parish needs.

Bazaar is one big project that many parishioners would eagerly look forward to participate. It is not only a time to support a cause of helping the needy but the event is likewise an occasion where parishioners take time to socialize with other parishioners and friends.  Foreign communities normally try their best to contribute their own share in the event.  They prepare foods that are popular in their country of origin.  Hence, the bazaar can be at times an occasion to showcase an international cuisine where the Vietnamese, the Indonesian, the Latino, the Filipino, the Korean or African dishes are offered along with the Japanese food at very economical prices.  Other parishes would stage cultural presentation, where the members of their international community would exhibit dances, songs and games from their places of origin to entertain guests.

Just like in the past, the Catholic Tokyo International Center (CTIC) had participated in the annual bazaar of St. Anselm`s Parish that was held last June 4, 2017.  CTIC participated in this annual parish event to help raise fund for the organization by offering religious materials and other goods that are normally donated by generous sponsors but not anymore needed by the refugees.  Based on the accounting report, CTIC was able to generate a gross receipt of 23,080 yen.  A portion of which was donated to the parish and for the meals of the volunteer, leaving CTIC a very modest net income of 16,580 yen.  For CTIC, it is not about the income that it wishes to generate, but the spirit and the joy to support a charitable cause.

Just like the rest of the participants of the parish bazaar, be it in Meguro or Akabane last May 28, 2017 the main reason for this event is to help the poor and that is what made the volunteers respond happily and religiously to this very valuable parish activity.

Himig Heswita will hold concert in Tokyo

Well-known among the Filipino communities not only in the Philippines but overseas, the Himig Heswita will be coming to Tokyo to hold a benefit concert for the indigent seminarians of San Jose Seminary in Quezon City.  Billed "Kay Bait ng Diyos" or "God is good" is the first concert that the group will hold at Shibuya Cultural Center in Odawa on Wednesday, July 19, 2017 at seven thirty in the evening.  On Friday, July 21, the group`s second concert will be held at Roppongi Franciscan Chapel at 7pm.  Tickets for the concerts are 2,000yen at Shibuya and 5,000yen at the Franciscan Chapel.

The Himig Heswita became a household name among Catholic church choir in the Philippines due tot he popularity of their songs originally composed by some of the Jesuit pariests who themselves are the singers and musicians.  Some of their compositions had already been translated into different languages such as Chinese and Spanish and are popularly sung by these communities.

Composed mainly by Jesuit priests and their lay collaborators, the two limited concert engagements in Tokyo will be made possible by the Gathering of the Filipino Groups and Communities (GFGC) under the leadership of Dr. Mel Kasuya.  This concert is not merely to entertain, as most people would expect.  It is actually primarily to pray with their music.  For those interested to watch the concerts, please contact Ms. Erlyn Regondon of the English Pastoral Ministry.

PhilMiss Annual Gathering will be at Himeji

The PhilMiss (Philippine Missionaries) once again held its annual national gathering last July 3 to 5, 2017 at Junshin Kai no Ie (CICM Retreat House) at Nibuno, Himeji.  This annual gathering of Filipino missionaries working in various dioceses in Japan is an occasion for updating of members through formation seminar and sharing based on its chosen theme.  The Filipino missionaries working in Kansai Prefecture will host this year`s annual event while the missionaires in Kanto area will take charge of the liturgy on July4.  According to Fr. Nelson Barbarona, SVD, the current coordinator of Kanto area at its recent preparatory meeting, there are at least sixteen confirmed missionaries from the dioceses of Saitama, Tokyo and Yokohama who had expressed certainty to participate.  Every one of them looks forward to the assembly as a period of great fellowship and as a source to recharge their missionary spirit.


Labor Seminar held at Hachioji hailed Successful

Marlyn, Larcy, Ariel and Zerra, the four Filipino leaders who had supervised the labor law seminar held at Hachioji last May 14, 2017 had expressed gratitude to the four English-speaking Japanese lawyers from Lawyers for Trafficked Victims or LTV for having facilitated a very informative seminar for the Filipino migrants in Tokyo suburb.  The seminar was organized by the EPT in partnership with the LTV, before the EPT members had left for their holidays.  According to the four active parish leaders, the four resource speakers were all young and fluent in English.  Moreover, they were very knowledgeable in their respective field of expertise and very accommodating especially on the questions raised by the participants.


Children of Migrants received First Communion at Meguro

On the very celebration of the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, last June 18, 2017 six children of migrants had received their first communion at St. Anselm`s Parish Church at the English Mass celebrated by Fr. Edwin d. Corros, CS.  The children had undergone a thorough religious preparation that began last February under the tutelage of the parish catechists led by Veronica Satoh.

Equally present at the solemn celebration were the parents of the first communicants.  Also, at the same celebration, Sr. Abelen Mandawe, one of the catechists who has been recently assigned to another mission was requested to come up to the altar to receive a bouquet of flowers from the parish leader as a gesture of appreciation for her valuable voluntary contribution to the parish.  After the Mass, a special lunch was offered by the African and Filipino communities to which their friends and other parishioners were invited to enjoy.

Kiyose parishioners bid “Sayonara” to Fr. Arun

 As a gesture of appreciation for the English Mass that Fr. Arun D`Sousa has celebrated every first Sunday of the month at Kiyose Parish for the past five years, the Filipino community last June 4, 2017 had accorded him a Sayonara party.  Fr. Arun will be temporarily departing Japan for England to complete his doctoral studies.  The Sayonara Party for the 36 years old Jesuit priest began with the mass that was anticipated at 12:00 noon and was immediately followed by a bountiful lunch prepared by the members of the Kiyose Filipino Catholic Community (KFCC).  The parish priest, Fr. Francis Ito, and some Japanese leaders came briefly to greet the young priest, as they need to attend as well another function in  a nearby parish.  The Japanese parishioners however had given Fr. Arun another farewell party last June 11, 2017 as they had failed to join the one organized by the KFCC.

Fondly called "Fr. Arun" by most Filipinos, the young Jesuit priest originally came from India.  He was ordained in Japan five years ago and had served the community since 2012.  According to the Filipino leaders, whenever the parish priest was not available to celebrate the Japanese mass, Fr. Arun was always available to take over.  If given the opportunity again to help, he promised to come back to the parish after one year of study and continue what he was doing for the parish community.