Online prayer meeting on the eve of Tokyo 2020 saturates Japan with prayers
On July 22, 2021 on the eve of the Tokyo Olympic Games, the Japan International Sports Partnership (JiSP) hosted an online prayer meeting. The call to prayer was “Let’s saturate Japan with a million hours of prayer!” A total of 245 people attended. Pastor of Canaan Praise Church, Takafumi Nagasawa, led a time of praise followed by a message delivered by Keishi Ikeda, Pastor of Hongodai Christ Church.
At the July 22 prayer meeting, four church leaders then gave four prayer points, and each offered a prayer to lead the way. Shigenori Ōshima, Pastor of Hatogaya Evangelical Free Church, pleaded for containment of the pandemic so that the health of the people involved with Tokyo 2020 would be protected. Joshua Hari, National Director of Asian Access Japan, lifted up the Olympic and Paralympic athletes and the chaplains ministering to them. Paul Yokota, Pastor of Fukuoka Church, asked the Lord for a movement of prayer that would spread across Japan and then all over the world. Yokota also asked for unity among the 8,000 Protestant churches in Japan. Nobuyoshi Nagai, Pastor of Tohoku Central Church, prayed for a spiritual revival in Japan.
With anticipation of revival in Japan, the meeting closed with singing “Sono hi zen sekai ga (On That Day the Whole World Shall).”
When they announced that no spectators would be permitted for Tokyo 2020, Ikeda had felt that all the doors had been closed for the ministry initiatives that had been planned over the past eight years to coincide with the Olympics. He soon realized, however, that the door for prayer remained wide open. He was awed when he sensed that God had set a wonderful stage at Tokyo 2020 to seek prayer warriors for Japan. Ikeda encouraged the attendees to keep praying until we see a spiritual revival together.
This meeting served as a forerunner to the prayer initiative Japan 1 Million (japan1million.com), co-sponsored by JiSP and JEMA, which began on July 23 and would take place throughout both the Olympics and Paralympics.
From Christian Shimbun, August 8, 2021
Translated by Atsuko Tateishi