Special Events

Home / Learn / Special Events
折り鶴の背景 水彩イラスト

Blessed are the Peacemakers

Thank you to all who joined us on September 28th for this event! To see the album of photos, click here.

Wednesday, September 28th, Mass at 5 p.m., followed by a Reception and Remarks from Survivors of the 1945 Atomic Bombing 

All are invited to a special opportunity to reflect on the topic of peace and the impact of nuclear weapons in the context of the current intensifying threat of nuclear attacks. In collaboration with Northwestern University Professor Hirokazu Miyazaki, the Sheil Catholic Center is hosting the Archbishop Emeritus of Nagasaki and a peace delegation from Japan with survivors of the 1945 atomic bombing.

The evening will begin with Mass, concelebrated by the Archbishop Emeritus of Nagasaki, the current Pastor of the Urakami Cathedral in Nagasaki, and the Chaplain of the Sheil Catholic Center.  The Mass will be followed by a light reception and remarks by members of the delegation, including their own and their family's experiences of the atomic bombing, as well as the history of Catholicism in Nagasaki. The evening event is free and open to all. The Mass will be livestreamed at 5 p.m. but the delegation's presentation and remarks afterwards will not be. If you wish to watch the livestreamed Mass, please click here. No reservation is necessary. Location: Sheil Catholic Center, Evanston Campus. 2110 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60201. Questions? Contact Sister Belinda at 847.328.4648.

Information about the Peace Delegation's Visit

A peace delegation from Urakami Cathedral, Nagasaki will visit the United States from September 26 until October 3rd. The main purpose of the delegation’s visit is to donate a replica of the “Atomic-bombed Cross” to Wilmington College, OH. The wooden cross was originally found in the ruins of the old Urakami Cathedral destroyed by the atomic bomb on August 9, 1945. The cross was given by Bishop Aijiro Yamaguchi of Nagasaki to Walter Hooke, a Catholic Marine from New York, in 1946. Mr. Hooke, who subsequently became an antinuclear activist, donated the cross to Wilmington College’s Peace Resource Center, which holds the largest collection of materials related to the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki outside Japan. A delegation from Wilmington College visited Nagasaki to repatriate the cross in August 2019. The cross is currently displayed alongside with the “Atomic-bombed Statue of Mary,” also found in the ruins of the cathedral, in Urakami Cathedral, Nagasaki.

Members of the Peace Delegation

Joseph Mitsuaki Takami, PSS, Archbishop Emeritus of Nagasaki (2003-2021)

Born in Mitsuyama, Nagasaki on March 21, 1946, Archbishop Emeritus Mitsuaki Takami of Nagasaki was the Archbishop of Nagasaki from 2003 until 2021. He also served as the President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan from 2016 until 2021. He received his B.A. from Keio University in 1968. He graduated from the Saint-Sulpice Seminary in Fukuoka and was ordained as a priest in 1972. He received his Licentiate in Dogmatic Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome in 1976 and taught at the Saint-Sulpice Seminary in Fukuoka from 1976 until 2003. He also served as Rector there from 1991 until 1997. He was appointed as Auxiliary Bishop of Nagasaki in 2002. He is an in-utero atomic bomb survivor and lost many members of his extended family in the atomic bombing.

Peter Ritsuo Hisashi, Pastor, Urakami Cathedral, Nagasaki

Born in Kami-Goto, Nagasaki, in 1958, Rev. Ritsuo Hisashi was ordained as a priest in 1985 and has served in various parishes in Nagasaki and Okinawa. His mother was 18 years old and was working in a factory in Nagasaki at the time of the atomic bombing. He lost his mother to cancer when he was ten.

Fusako Hirano

Born in Nagasaki, Mrs. Fusako Hirano has worked in Horaiken, a Chinese restaurant owned by her family. She currently manages Jasmine, a café near the Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum. She is an atomic bomb survivor.

Katsuichi Hirano

Born in Nagasaki in 1943, Mr. Katsuichi Hirano survived the atomic bombing when he was three. He worked in his family fishery business.

Yuji Nishimura

Born in Nagasaki in 1965, Mr. Yuji Nishimura is the President of Eiko Shikiten-sha, the only Catholic funeral home in Nagasaki founded by his father, Isao Nishimura in 1982. Mr. Nishimura graduated from Nagasaki Nanzan High School, a Society of the Divine Word school, and Nagasaki University’s Junior College for Commerce. Both of his parents are atomic bomb survivors.

Kazutoshi Yamada

Born into a longtime Catholic family in Urakami, Nagasaki, Mr. Kazutoshi Yamada was trained in shipbuilding and mechanical engineering at Nagasaki Industrial High School and Nihon University, Tokyo. He worked as a shipbuilding engineer at Ishikawajima Harima Heavy Industries and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries until his retirement in 2002. Mr. Yamada is currently serving on the Urakami Parish Finance Committee. He also serves on the board of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (Junshin Sisters). Three of Mr. Yamada’s grandparents and eight of his uncles and aunts were killed in the atomic bombing. He graduated from Yamazato Elementary School, one of several elementary schools in Nagasaki destroyed by the atomic bomb and grew up in the vicinity of the ruins of the old Urakami Cathedral.