Mobara Catholic Church

image_pdfimage_print

Name

Mobara Catholic Church

Dedicated to

Assumption

Date of Establishment

June, 1952

Pastor

AJIMINE, Harumi Paul

Number of Parishioners

401 (as of Dec.31,2016)

Sunday Mass

Sun. 9:30 am (Japanese)  Except 4th Sunday.
1st Sun. 2 pm (English)
4th Sun. 11 am (International Mass in English & Japanese )

Weekday Mass

Tue. – Sat. 7 am (1st Thu. only at “Mary’s House”.)

Sunday School

Sun. (after Mass) 10:40 am – 11:40 am (For kindergarten and elementary school children.)

Volunteer Activity

Lunchtime gathering for the elderly who live alone in the vicinity.
Support for CTIC Transport services for the elderly.
Help for those seeking assistance from the Church.
Supporting people who need help.

Address

992 Takashi, Mobara-shi, Chiba 297-0029  Google Maps

Telephone

0475-22-2420

Fax

0475-22-2420

Facilities for the Handicapped

Slope (or Barrier free), Toilet

Directions

20 minutes walk from JR Mobara Sta. Or Take Kominato Bus headed for Ōami Sta. or for Kita or for Chiharadai Sta. or for Midorigaoka Tenbōdai or for Nagarachū-shita or for Outlet Concert Nagara from Mobara Sta.. Get off at Takeda Byōin stop. 3 minutes walk from the stop. Parking space available for total of 20 vehicles.

Parish History

Father Vigroux François, M.E.P. had arrived in Japan in 1872 and he became the first missionary in Chiba prefecture. He had a lay disciple, Mr. Jacob Tomoo Hirata, who had taught the people to the Catholic faith and served for the starting of Mobara Church. Mr. Hitara had baptized at Tuskiji Church and he had been assigned as a head of Mobara police station from December 1979 to January1883 after experiencing the same position at the police stations in Chiba, Sakura, Awa and Maehara. He met Fr. Vigroux François in Sakura. He himself did not become a catechist but had lead Mr. Taizo Makino, Mr. Harukazu Fujii, Mr. Kyuzo Hayashi, Mr.Higuchi Katsutaro, Maru Mannsato to be the catechists as well as many others to be the faithful active members of the Church. Around Mobara area these people had done a marvelous mission works and then the number of people who were baptized or catechumen had been increased in the Church. In August 1883 a new chapel with European style had been built after the Church in Chiba and at the 16th of September the dedication Mass of the new chapel had been celebrated solemnly. In spite of the heavy rain about 6,700 people from Mobara area or neighboring towns had come to attend the ceremony. The population of Mobara Town was only about 2,000 at that time and then we can imagine how it had attracted the interest of many people. On the Christmas Eve of the year, people were so excited to attend the Midnight Mass for the first time and they joyfully decorated the chapel solemnly. All the Catholics in and around Mobara area had received the sacrament of confession and the Holy Communion. Though the chapel was small but its completion gave a big encouragement to the catechists and the members of the Church. From the end of the year to the next January 15 people in Tsurumai and 19 people in Mobara area had been baptized. But from 1886 the influence of the Church had been declined gradually. There had been a growing tendency to anti-Europeanization and then nationalism had come to the front in the society which had given a big influence on evangelical mission works. Especially the thought of Mr.Shigeki Nishimura, a educationalist who was born in Sakura, had been connected with the content of ” The Imperial rescript on education” promulgated on October 1890 and had given further impetus to the growing tendency to anti-Europeanization. The Church which had been built in 1883 had remained till the end of Meiji era and after that the gathering had been held at the temporary chapel located in a Japanese house. But the Church building had been disappeared soon after and the catechists went away too. In this difficult situations some Catholics in Mobara who wished to keep their faith went out to Chiba Church to receive the sacraments. Also the regional conference which had been held by the order from Rome brought about the big change to the policy on evangelization of the Church in Japan till that time. The free atmosphere was lost in the new policy and strict observance of the rules on daily Christian life was emphasized in details. It ignored the custom, climate and the condition under the mission country of Japan, and it was not suitable to the evangelization in Japanese society. Many people of the Church could not follow this regulation.

Present Situation

In 1952, Mobara Catholic Church became a parish under the St.Columban Missionaries. Fr. Charles Roddy was the first chaplain. In 1953 they have built the Church at the present place and the pastoral cares has begun. In 1982 the new chapel has been built and then in 1994 the parsonage and the hall have been built. The St.Columban Missionaries has ended the pastoral ministry. at Mobara Church in 2009 and The Guadalupe Missioners has taken up the ministry from 2010.