I send my deepest sympathies to the victims of the Tohoku-Pacific Ocean Earthquake that struck on March 11. I would also like to extend my sincerest condolences to those who have lost their life and to the families who have lost loved ones in this tragic disaster. Words cannot express the great deal of anxiety and sadness that the many evacuees and friends and families of those who are missing must feel. It is my hope that as many people as possible will be found.
To stay informed of the current situation in areas directly affected by the disaster and to provide the people with mental and physical support, we immediately opened up Disaster Relief Center Headquarters in Kyoto (Hongwanji), Tohoku district (Sendai Betsuin), and Tokyo (Tsukiji Hongwanji) after the earthquake hit. Not only affected by the aftermath of the earthquake, but also by the devastating tsunami that followed, and the radiation-emitting nuclear power plant, I cannot imagine how much the victims must be filled with uncertainty. As a Buddhist organization, we will support the victims to the best of our ability.
In regards to the 750th Memorial for Shinran Shonin, it has been decided that the observance will begin as scheduled on April 9. The slogan of this observance is the aspiration of Shinran Shonin, ÔÇòMay peace and tranquility prevail throughout the world.ÔÇû In accordance with his wishes, let us observe the Memorial as we keep in mind the pain and sadness of all the victims. March 17, 2011
Bishop Shoshin Tachibana
Jodo Shinshu Hongwanji-ha