Emerging Church Japan

When I was in Japan i was continually asked if i knew Lowell Shepherd. I still haven’t met him but I like what I hear. In a fascinating interview with emergingchurch.info that i found on the Baker blog, Lowell throws out some great thoughts:

– “The non church movement however, is evidence of the Mission of God being expressed in Japan and I believe deserves a second look by missiologists.”

-“The fact is that the western model of Sunday church meetings, and full mid week programs are wholly incompatible with the Group oriented society that pervades Japan. “

Regarding the emerging church movement in the west, Lowell feels that there is too much talk and “emerging” as a word feels a tad arrogant. He can say that if he wants to.

JapanandrewteachingI was really impressed to meet many young Japanese church planters in Tokyo and in the south. I attended one of their “parties” which involved sitting on mats eating really good Japanese food, discussing spiritual things with all kinds of people – mainly university students, while the DJ was spinning 1960’s James Bond tracks. Loved it!!!!! Cant wait to get back there. The image here is me teaching “Tree By the River” which DJ Kenny Mitchell recorded [he didnt realize he was taping it] in Tokyo and put to music. Its the track called “Movement” on Brooklyn and Beyond and you will hear my voice and my Japanese translator.

DJ Kenny is a big fan of Japan btw and has gone there to encourage the churches quite a few times.

Heres a sample track from the Cross Rhythms site. [MP3] Buying an album will help DJ Kenny get over to our Die Gefaehrten Global Roundtable for Emerging Church Leaders (Germany, Aug 6-8) and we really want him there. Check out his web site and click on audio. Heck – someone just send him $500 and tell him to buy a plane ticket.

And if you have that kind of money to throw around . . . i mean . . . INVEST in emerging church leaders who want to come to our Roundtable in August, let me know i and i can send you some names. the good news is that Trevor McPherson of Underground Railroad has raised a little money and now we can pay half the fare for some of the leaders we invited from Mexico, Turkey, Macedonia and Paraguay. But there are still many countries not represented.

Sorry – didn’t mean to end this post by passing the hat

[Images-1-2 TRICKSY LITTLE KIWI!!!!]
but hey – there is so much criticism about emerging leaders not having enough connection or training and yet very little resources to make it happen. But happen it will. And we hope Japan might send one or two of their leaders also. A Die Gefaehrten blog is in the making but is not fully running yet. Which brings me back to Japan so i can finish off this post on topic.

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Andrew Jones launched his first internet space in 1997 and has been teaching on related issues for the past 20 years. He travels all the time but lives between Wellington, San Francisco and a hobbit home in Prague.


  • Great thoughts. And the round table sounds excellent.

  • Morten says:

    Hey andrew. Have you checked out our homegirl from Sub Church Nina who lives her mission everday life in japan? see her blogg: http://www.nina-san.blogspot.com/

  • philjohnson says:

    There’s more to the story on the Nonchurch Movement in Japan. I’ve filed a commentary on it and Lowell Sheppard has been very generous in his compliments on what I’ve written

  • Jesse in Tokyo-ish says:

    Is there an emerging-type church in Tokyo? I’ve tried very hard to find one through internet and other means to no avail..
    If there isnt, anybody want to start one?

  • Dave says:

    Hey hey,
    I’ve just moved over to Japan and have found home in a Church here in Tokyo called Jesus Lifehouse. It’s an international church with bi-lingual messages. It’s only 5 years old and has around 300-400 regulars.
    Emergent…? I guess in many ways, depends on your definition, or lack thereof 😉 (which makes it emergent eh)
    I appreciate the links for the DJ. Jesus Lifehouse had UK DJ Andy Hunter come and play for us in April 2006 and around 200+ turned out for the event… we’re keen to have him back too! (or any one else with a similar heart and background)
    Anyway, I set up a media site for the church not long after arriving. It clocked up 60,000 hits in it’s first unofficial month. http://www.jesuslifehouse.tv is the site and you’ll find audio and video files from the weekend sermons. Might be of help to anyone looking for a young, progressive and growing Church in Tokyo.

  • andrew says:

    dave – sounds great. when i was in tokyo we had DJ Kenny Mitchell with us and really connected well with the young Japanese church planters that werein the club scene
    emergent? i dont think they use that terminology. but its cool what they are doing.

  • Oswald Zico Boidya says:

    I am a Christian boy looking for a mega church to plant their sub-church here in Dhaka the capital of a Muslim country Bangladesh. Hope God will open a door for us through a mega church from USA/Japan/UK……
    With Christian love,
    Oswald Zico Boidya
    House 45, Road 27, Block A
    Banani, Dhaka 1212
    Tel: +880 2 8835114
    Fax: +880 2 8818080
    Mobile +880 1713 047 064

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