1978 – Hayama Seminar

At the beginning of 1967, we had been in Japan for only four months and for most of that time we were heavily involved as full-time students at the Tokyo School for the Japanese Language.

During the first week of 1967, I had the privilege of going with Calvin Parker, a missionary sempai (older colleague) for whom I had much respect and admiration, to the Eighth Hayama Missionary Seminar at Amagi Sanso, the Baptist conference center south of Tokyo.

I was impressed with most of those who were at that Hayama Seminar–and with the quality of the papers that were presented there. Less than two and a half years later, I was surprised and thrilled to be asked to present a paper at the Eleventh Hayama Seminar to be held in January 1970. My paper was titled, “The Sovereignty of God and Christian Responsibility.” (In time, I assume I will find the booklet printed with that and the other papers in it.)

The second paper I presented at a Hayama Seminar was in 1978. As you see from the following picture, the theme was “Equipping the Laity for Service,” and my paper, “The Biblical Concept of the Laity” (pp. 11-29) was the first of the seven papers presented at that meeting.

Through the years, I attended several of the Hayama Seminars, and it was always a meaningful time of learning and dialogue with thoughtful men. (The seminar was only for men.) But the times I enjoyed most were those when I had the privilege of presenting a paper, such as I did in 1978.

Later I worked with my translator, Otsuka Kumiko-san, on getting the essay into Japanese; it was published in 1980 in The Seinan Theological Review published by Seinan Gakuin University. Here is the first page of the essay in Japanese: 

Jpn.essay on laity