At our school there is an annual “matsuri” or festival held. It is a time of games, speech contests, food, entertainment and really an opportunity to enjoy time together. (A “matsuri” is typically an annual event held in all towns/schools across Japan.) For our school each class is given a designated task. This year Cathalain’s class was asked to be part of the procession. This is where once a year the school “kami” or (Shinto deity) is taken out and paraded throughout the school’s campus. Cathalain explained to her teacher she would not be able to participate even though most people know longer believe the “kami” is really a deity and the act is done out of tradition.
These alters are throughout Japan in Shrines, schools and businesses. Since in Shintoism gods are in everything these are important for success and prosperity as a town, school or business. We long for the Japanese to know the ONE, true God who is everywhere and listens at anytime of the day to his people call upon his name.
Below is a video and pictures of the procession with the kami out front and the musicians far behind.