Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Saturday 18 September |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Daudi Okelo and Bl. Jildo Irwa
home iconArt & Culture
line break icon

Four years after atomic bombing, a Mass took place in the ruins of Nagasaki

Urakami Cathedral

Public Domain

John Burger - published on 11/21/19

Pope Francis will visit Japanese port city. He has been preceded by a long line of witnesses.

Pope Francis will be in Japan this week, visiting sites that are rich in history. Aside from the atomic bombings of two cities where he will be—Hiroshima and Nagasaki—the pope’s visit also should call attention to the history of the Catholic faith in Japan, which goes back centuries.

That history was highlighted in a public event in 1949, when much of Nagasaki was still in ruins, only four years after the United States dropped a plutonium implosion bomb on the city. Archbishop Paul Aijirō Yamaguchi of Nagasaki celebrated a Pontifical Mass in honor of the 400th anniversary of the arrival of St. Francis Xavier to Japan. The Mass took place amid the ruins of Nagasaki Cathedral and concluded with veneration of a reliquary containing the right arm of St. Francis Xavier. The right arm is significant: it would have been the one that baptized people. It is thought that St. Francis Xavier baptized more people than anyone else in history.

A group called Catholic Sat recently republished Life Magazine photos of the 1949 Mass on Twitter.

Tags:
JapanPope Francis

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Pope considers what to do with pro-abortion Catholic politicians
2
communion
Philip Kosloski
How receiving Holy Communion can drive away demons
3
Berthe and Marcel
Lauriane Vofo Kana
This couple has the longest marriage in France
4
CROSS
Philip Kosloski
Why is the feast of the Holy Cross celebrated on September 14?
5
Mathilde De Robien
How a lost masterpiece of sacred art was discovered thanks to chi...
6
Kathleen N. Hattrup
On same-sex unions, Pope says Church doesn’t have power to change...
7
SAINT ANTHONY OF PADUA
Philip Kosloski
This prayer to St. Anthony is said to have “never been known to f...
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.