►On December 21, 2022 – the 408th anniversary of the arrival of Dom Justo Ukon Takayama (1552 Osaka-1615 Manila; beatified 2017) and 350 Christian exiles from Tokugawa Japan – Archbishop Jose F. Cardinal Advincula installed the 40th altar statue of Blessed Takayama at the National Shrine of Saint Michael and the Archangels NSSMA (San Miguel Church) in Manila.
A painting – ●‘“Dom Justo Ukon Takayama & Family in Manila” (by UST’s Derrick C. Macutay, 2022) – measuring <56.5 x 66 inches> – was blessed by Cardinal Advincula. It is the first of a series of paintings about Takayama’s final 44 days in Manila.
►The Japanese compatriots of Blessed Takayama were led by ●Japanese Ambassador Kazuhiko Koshikawa and his wife, Mrs. Yuko Koshikawa; ●Mr. Akihiko Hitomi, First Secretary, Embassy of Japan; ●Mr. Matsuda Shigehiro, Director of Japan Information & Culture Center and ●Jenny De Jesus Okada.
The Japanese community was represented by: ●Mr. Seiji Takano, President, Japanese Association Manila Inc. and ●Mr. Kunihiko Nimura, General Secretary.
►In his speech, Ambassador Koshikawa remarked that Blessed Takayama Ukon’s pioneering legacy continues to live on throughout centuries and expressed his hope for more Japanese visitors to get to know more about him through his statue.
“He was able to experience the warmth and hospitality of the Filipino people and this created a seed for the long-standing friendship between Japan and the Philippines,” the Ambassador said.#
Dr. ERNESTO A. DE PEDRO, PhD
Editor, Official Vatican Document: “Justus Takayama Ukon, Servus Dei” (1994, 648p)
Recipient, Pope Francis’ Apostolic Blessing No. 460.258