Two weeks have passed since the devastating earthquake on the 11th March. At least I have been able to visit the devastated area in Sendai. The night of the 26th March I flew from Tokyo to Yamagata Airport. The next morning I entered Sendai City. Sendai is the main city of the Tohoku region where the Cathedral of Tohoku Diocese of Nippon Sei Ko Kai (the Anglican Church in Japan) is located.
On Sunday morning, I visited the Cathedral (Sendai Christ Church) and saw that parts of the walls had fallen down, the walls were cracked. It looked to me as the whole building was lopsided. On the floor of the Cathedral there were various piles of goods sent from churches in different parts of Japan such as foodstuff, fuel and clothing. Because of the frequent aftershocks, the church council members have decided that it is too dangerous to use the Cathedral for worship, so they are having services in the nearby church hall.
In Sendai City they have restored water and electricity supplies, but the supply of gas to houses has not been restored. Although food is available it is still very difficult to get hold of petrol and other fuel. So some of the parishioners who gathered for worship on the Sunday walked a long distance to get there. Due to the continuing aftershocks, some people go to bed fully clothed, wearing shoes. There are those who have not slept at all since the earthquake and look exhausted. The Bishop of Tohoku Hiromichi Kato who preached at eucharist, he tried to encourage the congregation by saying that their faith would lead them to hope even through the hardship and difficulties of the present situation.