People have heard the name Jesus, but it doesn't mean anything to them... Jesus is not a part of Japanese Christmas.
Even though fewer than 1% of the population in Japan identifies as Christian, Christmas is a widely-celebrated holiday. The day is associated with Santa Claus and presents, sponge cake, Kentucky Fried Chicken (!), and is similar to Valentine's Day in the United States. Because of the few churches in the country, many Japanese are unfamiliar with actual story behind celebration. This can lead to a confusing clash of images, as seen in the department store window below.
photo source unknown
Through the Mustard Seed Christian Churches in Nagoya, Osaka, and Kobe, many people in Japan are hearing of Jesus for the first time. Over 500 people heard the Christmas story this month through MSCC Osaka's Christmas musical. The meaning of Christmas has entirely changed for new believers like Yuma and Sari. We are grateful for the good work happening through the MSCC churches in Japan!
If you would like to support the work done in Osaka, you can do so through this link.