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Northern Pacific Rim

Japan

70% Buddhist; 68% are Unreached Peoples

Japan is a vital, energetic and dynamic society that is constantly reinventing itself— while struggling to maintain a semblance of its long lost past. The majority of Japanese classify themselves as both Shinto and Buddhist, and just over 1% as Christian. A large proportion of the population is, however, secular. Even among believers, only 50% attend church. Most churches have less than 30 people.

Japan consists of four main islands and about 1000 smaller islands. More than 75% of Japanese people live in crowded, sophisticated cities. About the size of California, its rugged mountain chains (some are active volcanoes) make up more than 72% of the total land area. Only 14% of the land is able for farming— leaving most of the countryside covered by dense, cultivated forests.

Prayer Needs:

  • Young people are becoming a “rare” breed due to Japan’s low birth rate. The bonds that once held Japanese society together have rapidly dissolved, and the youngest generation are the most obvious casualties. Fully 85% of Japanese teens wonder why they exist at all, and 11% wish they had never been born. Those aged 18 to 23 are the most open to the gospel.
  • Chi Alpha student groups. There are more than 3 million students in over 1,200 campuses. More workers are needed to reach them for Christ.
  • Outreach to the elderly. Christian nursing homes and hospices will be strategic; pray for more to be opened. Christian care workers are also going to be in high demand, creating a clear tentmaking/mission opportunity for believers from other nations, such as the Philippines.
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