Message to all the Catholic faithful from the Archbishop of Tokyo on the occasion of the 2011 off the Pacific coast of Tohoku Earthquake

To All The Catholic Faithful,

Greetings of Peace!

The earthquake and tsunami that struck the Tohoku and Kanto Regions on the 11th of March has drastically changed the life of many people in Japan. We are all worried and concerned about national security, our safety and our loved ones. I am also aware that your families and relatives in your home countries are very much worried and concerned of your well-being and safety.

In moments of crisis like this one, it is of utmost importance that you remain calm, composed and watchful. Preparedness is an important factor in crisis situations. I want to ensure that you are familiar with basic emergency procedures, that is, where to go, what to prepare and bring in instances that you will be asked to evacuate. I am conscious that being a foreigner in Japan, it is difficult to understand the news and therefore, there is a danger that you will be reading, hearing and seeing news that are sensationalized and are therefore not reflective of the real state of the country. It is crucial that your sources of information are credible, objective and balanced. It is also equally important that we trust and believe that the Japanese government is doing everything in its power to protect all of its citizens and residents. So be vigilant in monitoring day-to-day news and information that the government releases to the press people. Following their advisory and cooperation is important so that Japan can overcome and withstand this crisis.

In many parts of the world, people are praying for Japan. I know that you are also ardently praying for the whole country. I encourage you to continue praying for God’s constant protection as I give you the assurance, that I join you and I am one with you in praying that God may do what is best for Japan and all of us. May God’s blessing, his grace and peace always be upon us as we continue to journey together towards the day where God as our loving Father will finally welcome us into his loving embrace.

Have no fear, take courage and have faith that God is always with us until the end of time. Amen!

Peter Takeo Okada
Archbishop of Tokyo