- 高等教育ジャーナル : 高等教育と生涯学習 (ISSN:13419374)
- vol.15, pp.1-14, 2007-12
On July 28, 2006 the Asahi Shimbun began to critically report the controversy about the Christian Gospel Mission (called “Setsuri” in Japan), and Japanese belatedly acknowledged cult problems on campus. Jung Myung Seok, the founder of this cult, was internationally arraigned by the Korean police on suspicion of rape of female disciples and he escaped overseas in 1999, finally being arrested in China on May 12, 2007. In Korea and Japan there are allegedly several hundred victims. Providence conducted controversial proselytization on campuses and got approximately two thousand members in Japan. They concealed actual information about Providence in terms of the theology, the founder, and organization and set up various sports and cultural circles camoufl aging its missionary work object.
According to the investigation by Asahi News Company, former members of Providence, and the Student Affairs Division of Hokkaido University, Providence has a church in Sapporo and proselytizes on the Hokkaido University campus. Faculty members should realize the fact that students in Hokkaido University are exposed to their masked proselytization. We must also take measures to protect the students’ right to safely study on campus and their freedom of religion.
So far there has been little academic research concerning Providence except for the authors’ report in the monthly Journal “Chuou Kouron,” issued in October, 2006, titled ‘How should we protect students from controversial campus missions.’ I conducted additional research into former members of Providence and herein I illustrate their beliefs and behavior not only for faculty members of Hokkaido University but also for all student affairs offi cials and professors to understand the actual nature of Providence and the risk of their free campus mission.
The contents of this paper are as follows: Chapter 1 introduces the reports and investigations of Providence. Chapter 2 explains the history and theology of Providence. Chapter 3 analyzes the method of recruitment and proselytization of new members and their daily mission work. Chapter 4 discusses the controversial mission of Providence and its harmful effect on students. The last chapter proposes possible measures to confront the controversial mission on campus.