In November 2005, while Vassula visited Japan she asked: "Why isn't there a Beth Myriam in Japan? It is easy to start, try to give some food to just a few people, it's OK." Then Satoru and his wife Jacqueline did exactly so. They went out to the streets of Tokyo with other volunteers from the TLIG Prayer Group of Tokyo and found many homeless people living in the parks of this busy metropolis. They started bringing food once a week. They would simply choose a tree to hang up the icon of Our Lady, then set up their
tables in the park and start feeding the homeless people.
In the beginning they fed less than ten people, with four volunteers. After many twists and turns the Beth Myriam has grown by God's Grace. In 2010 they have over 20 volunteers and feed over 200 people in a big hall of St. Igunatius Church, located in Yotsuya the centre of Tokyo. With collaboration from the parish they also give commodities like clothes, shoes, medicines and consultation for social welfare services (this consultation is not by the BM but by the specialists from the parish). Last Christmas they had a Christmas party and gave special foods and presents. This event appeared in Catholic Newspaper in Japan.
Giving special presents to the poor, (left - Satoru, right - Fr. Domenico Vitali, the parish priest of St. Ignatius Church.
The article about the couseling service for social welfare(right up) and our
Christmas party in December 2009(left down).
As the fruits of the counseling, about fifty people have got out of life on the street. The volunteers also try to evangelize there - since Japan is a buddhist country nobody knows about Christianity. People don't know even that Mary is the mother of Jesus, nor who St. John is. Fr. Heinrich Jokiel S.J., the spiritual advisor of TLIG Japan, often gives talk to the poor. Satoru leads the poor to pray before meal and after having meal he reads the messages and invites them to pray the Rosary together. Then, something happened to few of the poor, they started to believe with Joy.
Asking a blessing and saying Hail Mary prayer before the meal
The two guys are the volunteers from the poor, one used to be a cook, the
half of the volunteers are ex-homeless men.
Curry on rice is one of the most popular menu in Japan
Most of the poor are men, few are women, there are no children living on the streets of Tokyo.
Address: Tokyo, Japan Responsible:Satoru & Jacqueline Sugawara