聖日礼拝 毎週日曜日 2階礼拝堂にて。
第1礼拝 午前8:30 ～午前10:00 第2礼拝 午前11:00 ～ 午後0:30
The foundation for Sakai Evangelical Church was laid by Mr. and Mrs. Helge Jansson, a Swedish missionary couple who came to Japan in 1949. During this critical time in the aftermath of WWII they offered people the hope found in the Bible, and led many to Christ.
Among those they led to Christ were the late Pastor Mitsuo Gakiya and his wife, Michiko. The church that began as a result of the shared work of the Jansson and Gakiya families rented a dressmaking school building in which to hold its early meetings. The church grew and built its own building in Daisen-cho, into which it moved in 1960.
In 1997 it moved into a second new building in Wakamatsu-dai, Senboku-Newtown, where it currently meets.
A seminary was founded in 1961 to train pastors. People who studied there went on to plant new churches in other cities such as Nara, Wakayama, Misaki, and Yao.
Now there are more than fifty churches within what is now JEC (Japan Evangelical Church), the group of churches of which Sakai Evangelical Church is a part. Most of these churches are in the Kansai region, but there are JEC churches in other regions–the northernmost is in Tokyo, and the southernmost, in Kyushu. JEC is registered as an official religious corporation approved by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.
As the first church founded in this group, Sakai Evangelical Church has always been the center of the group, and late Pastor Mitsuo Gakiya led the mission work of the group as its chief director. In 2014, Pastor Akira Gakiya assumed the title of chief director and continues to carry out its duties in the spirit of his father, Pastor Mitsuo Gakiya.
JEC is committed to standing on Biblical orthodoxy while respecting the uniqueness of each local church as we search for ways to help each other. JEC’s administration model is deeply influenced by the moderate democracy practiced in Northern Europe. The Sweden-based mission organization (now known as Evangeliska Frikyrkan) that sent the Janssons to Japan also sends missionaries to other nations around the world, including Bangladesh, Thailand, Nepal and Mongolia in Asia; Brazil and Argentina in South America; and Ethiopia and Uganda in Africa.
Because it was planted by Swedish missionaries, Sakai Evangelical Church has inherited certain Nordic cultural values: respect for humanity, the pursuit of moderation, and the appreciation of simplicity.
The church’s operation and activity richly reflect these values–we cherish the connection between people more than anything. As a result, we have assisted in the births of new churches in Tondabayashi, Kawachinagano, Niwashirodai, Senboku, and the opening of new branches in Tokyo, Gunma, Nagano, Aichi and Okayama. We seek to expand the work of the church in a natural way.
We also value the ability to connect with other believers around the world, and have enjoyed maintaining our friendships with people from Sweden, Finland, the United States, Canada, Russia, India, Indonesia, and other nations. We try to approach all of our relationships–international and local–in the same spirit.
Sakai Evangelical Church started with twenty-three people on February 3, 1952. In 1975, we had over one hundred people in a worship service. Today, we have two services every Sunday, with about 150 to 160 in each one.
We have a wide range of ages represented, from little children to the elderly, and these meet in various study groups according to their needs. The largest group is the married women’s group, called “Fujin-kai.” Married men form “Sounen-kai,” and the young adults have a group called “Wing” that offers several extra-curricular activities. Children younger than high school age have classes tailored to their age group.
Among the most important activities of the church are Sunday morning worship services, Wednesday evening meetings, and Friday married womens meetings. We also have prayer meetings, young adult meetings, youth meetings and children’s Sunday School classes (for teaching them Bible content).
We have poured a lot of energy into children’s education. We have about thirty volunteers working with several classes divided according to age. In addition to the Biblical education we offer on Sundays, we also schedule picnics, summer retreats, Christmas meetings and more. We value working with the children in our local community and offer a children’s church called “Rainbow Kids” on Saturdays for children in the neighborhood.
We hold many musical events which we invite our neighbors, family and friends to enjoy with us. We appreciate a wide range of musical genres and have offered concerts in various venues–including Bach concerts in the sanctuary, a Lena Maria’s concert at the Big-i in front of Izumigaoka station, and a Christmas Jazz Gospel concert at Yayoi-no-kaze Hall in Izumi Chuo station. Each December, our sanctuary hosts a Christmas concert, which many of our neighbors look forward to attending.
We also try to meet people’s different needs by hosting lectures on the Bible, elderly people’s welfare issues, marriage and family, and other topics. The married women’s group organizes an annual bazaar to support church activities and also to provide a means of interacting with the community.
The church supports missions and relief and development work inside and outside Japan. We have been able to help with needs in Tohoku, Japan (tsunami relief), the Philippines (typhoon relief), the Middle East (refugee assistance ), and Thailand (orphan care). We have sent volunteers to Tohoku, and have had pastors from there come and speak to us.
You may assume I am from Okinawa because of my name, but I was born and raised in Sakai. The former Pastor (my father) moved to Sakai, Osaka during the turmoil of World War II. He met the Swedish missionaries, and my mother, and I was born.
“If he had not left Okinawa…”
“If the missionaries had not been there….”
But I am here, now–beyond many “ifs” woven in God’s history.
Recently, our church has been moving forward, carrying “Rainbow Church” as its theme. A rainbow in the sky is God’s promise that dispels our “if.” It may be covering, encouraging, comforting, and shining upon you today. I would be very grateful if I could share and taste the grace of Jesus Christ with you. I am looking forward to seeing you.
Children’s Class: Every Sunday 8:30 am
Sunday Worship (Service): 8:30 am and 11:00 am
The church has a parking lot.
The nearest train station is Izumigaoka station on Senboku Kousoku-sen (Senboku Rapid Railway)
On Sundays, there is a church shuttle bus.
For more information, please call 072-290-0888 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org