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Rome Reports

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Vatican welcomes one of the oldest forms of theater, “Noh,” from Japan

Rome was transformed into Japan for a few hours thanks to this show. The Noh Theater, one of the oldest forms of theater in the world, moved to the Eternal City for the 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Japan and the Holy See.

Spectators watched this traditional form of theater, which has been passed down from generation to generation.

MASTER KAUFASA HŌSHŌ
Policy and Resources, Japanese Theater

"Culture and religion are important when it comes to getting to know a population. Through these two things, it is possible for all to understand the different religions and to respect each other."

This work was written 1,000 years ago by a German priest who, while studying in Japan, wanted to make Christianity known. Japan is a country with one of the greatest cultural and religious diversity. 

Master Kaufasa Hosho believes that Pope Francis is a highly esteemed leader because he knows how to keep people together.

MASTER KAUFASA HŌSHŌ
Policy and Resources, Japanese Theater

"We really like Pope Francis. His work is based on understanding others, making everyone stay together, to have peace, and this is necessary in the whole world - respect and understanding others, even if they do not share the same culture or religion."

The Japanese ambassador to the Holy See, Yoshio Nakamura, also spoke about his country's relationship with Pope Francis and lamented that Japan is not so present in the Vatican.

YOSHIO NAKAMURA
Ambassador of Japan to the Holy See

"There are no Japanese cardinals nor people from Japan working in the Vatican. Now with the 75th anniversary, I would like to send this message, so that others will see that we exist."

The ambassador was explaining that during Pope Francis' pontificate, no Japanese cardinal has been named. In the 75 years of relations between Japan and the Vatican, there have only been five cardinals. Three of them were created by John Paul II.

YOSHIO NAKAMURA
Ambassador of Japan to the Holy See

"Pope Francis says that the worst thing is to have no interest, not to be curious, so I would like Pope Francis to be curious about our country, to understand us and to get to know us. This is the message I send to Pope Francis."

In Japan, there are more than 127 million people, of whom only 509,000 are Christian.

Although their relationship with the Vatican is relatively brief compared to other countries, the call to the pope is clear: Japan wants more Japanese cardinals to be created and if it's possible, a visit from Pope Francis.