Last July 29, 2017 (Saturday), in conjunction with the fourth Philippine Conference on New Evangelization, representatives from the Japanese town of Toyono-cho, the birthplace of Blessed Justus Takayama Ukon, the Samurai of Christ, visited the University of Santo Tomas to install a granite marker at the base of the image of Takayama.

In Takayama’s honor

In his welcome remarks, Rev. Fr. Jesus M. Miranda, Jr., O.P., PhD, Secretary-General, said that the chance to jointly venerate the image of Blessed Takayama was an opportunity for UST and her friends from Japan to make sure that the brotherly friendship will flourish “into greater endeavors, not only in spiritual advocacies, but likewise in academic and research partnerships.”

More than four centuries since Takayama’s death in Manila, the veneration and commemoration of his sacrifices continue. In his closing message, Mr. Yoshihiro Shintani of the local Education office, said that, “We must have been guided by the hand of God in this endeavor. I ask that with this activity, we continue our partnership with more joint activities and spread his story all over the world. In the near future, I also want to see residents of Toyonocho visit the Philippines and for Filipinos to visit the birthplace of Takayama Ukon.”

The marker, made of granite mined from the town of Toyono-cho itself, bears engravings that pay tribute to the life of Blessed Justus Takayama Ukon, who was beatified by Pope Francis in 2016.

The seat of the Philippine involvement

UST is the seat of Philippine involvement in the cause of Blessed Takayama’s sainthood, beginning with its involvement in 1989. The advocacy was solidified on March 28, 2017, when after the beatification, a metal marker was installed.