Wednesday, June 28, 2006

St Francis Xavier and land of the Christian Daimyo

St Francis Xavier at the invitation of the Christian Daimyo, Ootomosorin (大友宗麟)arrived in Oita in September 1551 to preach Christianity. Oita the capital of Oita Prefecture is located in the north eastern part of Kyushu island.

This statue of the Daimyo stands in front of the Oita train station.

St Francis Xavier was one of the earliest missionary to spread Christianity to Japan. On his journey to Far East the Jesuit priest wrote in his diary that he stopped over in Singapore, and the ship that he was traveling in docked somewhere out in the mouth of the Kallang river.

The Daimyo or feudal lords in Kyushu played an important role in Japan history and the introduction of western civilization to Japan. It was in the order of Lord Otomosorin that the 12 year old Ito-Don-Mansyo went to Rome to learn Christianity. This boy was the first Japanese to travel to Europe in the16th century. The feudal lords from this island also played a crucial role in modern Japan with the Meiji restoration in 1876.

This statue of St Francis Xavier is located in the park opposite the ruins of the castle in Oita.

ANA Hotel Oita Oasistower / 6:30am-JST