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Religion

Japanese Americans used religion as one way to handle the stress of the incarceration experience. Church served as both a spiritual comfort and a place for community gatherings. On Sundays, Buddhist and Christian services and Sunday schools were held in the recreation halls. State Shintoism was another popular religion within the Japanese American community but was banned by the U.S. government on the grounds that it included "Emperor worship." Church services initially were given in both Japanese and English, but camp authorities later banned the use of Japanese at all group gatherings (although translation into Japanese was later permitted at some religious services).

World War II (54)
Concentration camps (556)
Religion (163)

Related articles from the Densho Encyclopedia :
Paul M. Nagano

163 items
George Nakata Interview Segment 25 (ddr-one-7-29-25)
vh George Nakata Interview Segment 25 (ddr-one-7-29-25)
Establishment of churches in camp

This material is based upon work assisted by a grant from the Department of the Interior, National Park Service. Any opinions, finding, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of the Interior.

Kay Matsuoka Segment 33 (ddr-densho-1000-48-33)
vh Kay Matsuoka Segment 33 (ddr-densho-1000-48-33)
Christian missionaries' weekly visits to camp lead to conversion
Paul Nagano Segment 8 (ddr-densho-1000-65-8)
vh Paul Nagano Segment 8 (ddr-densho-1000-65-8)
Christian faith and social justice: dealing with so-called "loyalty questionnaire," and military service
Paul Nagano Segment 10 (ddr-densho-1000-65-10)
vh Paul Nagano Segment 10 (ddr-densho-1000-65-10)
Efforts of Caucasian Christian churches to support Japanese Americans in concentration camps
Paul Nagano Segment 7 (ddr-densho-1000-65-7)
vh Paul Nagano Segment 7 (ddr-densho-1000-65-7)
Different denominations meld together as one ecumenical church in Poston concentration camp
Tsuguo
vh Tsuguo "Ike" Ikeda Interview I Segment 17 (ddr-densho-1000-123-17)
Participating in camp activities, high school, church, dances

As a teenager prior to World War II, began keeping scrapbooks with newspaper articles and memorabilia, a lifetime habit.

Memorial plaque (ddr-densho-11-11)
img Memorial plaque (ddr-densho-11-11)
This plaque was placed at the base of the cross on Castle Rock on October 2, 1982. The plaque honors Christian ministers who served the inmates at the Tule Lake concentration camp.
Memo from Co-ordinating Committee to the Advisory Council, March 18, 1944 (ddr-csujad-2-100)
doc Memo from Co-ordinating Committee to the Advisory Council, March 18, 1944 (ddr-csujad-2-100)
Memo regarding employment of priests as social workers and educational lecturers. Recommends employing nine Buddhist priests, stating that they will have greater influence over the students and parents ("colonists"), the majority of whom are Buddhist, than the Japanese Language School teachers would. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: sjs_sch_0101
Toshiye Hirose interview (ddr-csujad-6-7)
doc Toshiye Hirose interview (ddr-csujad-6-7)
Oral history interview with Toshiye Hirose. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: SCRC_HIROSE_TOSHIYE
Granada Christian Church news, vol. 1, no. 2, 1942 (ddr-csujad-7-20)
doc Granada Christian Church news, vol. 1, no. 2, 1942 (ddr-csujad-7-20)
Newsletter for the Granada Christian Church congregation. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: HMLSC_Granada Christian Church News
Christian church in Tule Lake (ddr-csujad-26-7)
doc Christian church in Tule Lake (ddr-csujad-26-7)
Report on the majority Protestant Christian church at Tule Lake and the development of a community church which became known as "Tule Lake Union Church." The report describes church organization, leadership issues and changes, schedules, facilities, church-centered groups and activities, finances, languages and membership. Report compiled as a portion of the Japanese American Evacuation and Resettlement ...
Cross erected by camp inmates (ddr-densho-11-7)
img Cross erected by camp inmates (ddr-densho-11-7)
This cross, erected by inmates at the Tule Lake concentration camp, sits on top of a formation called Castle Rock. It is being approached by pilgrimage attendees.
Report on Jerome to Tule Lake transfer George Kuratomi (ddr-csujad-2-46)
doc Report on Jerome to Tule Lake transfer George Kuratomi (ddr-csujad-2-46)
Detailed informational report about George Kuratomi, an incarceree transfer to Tule Lake Camp from Jerome Camp due to questions about his loyalty to the United States and his activities within the Buddhist repatriate group at Jerome Camp. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: sjs_sch_0046
Obon, Rohwer, Arkansas (ddr-csujad-5-339)
img Obon, Rohwer, Arkansas (ddr-csujad-5-339)
Photographed are Akiko An and Kiku Tanimoto, Ayame May Okine, and Dorothy Ai Okine. It is taken during the obon event in the Rohwer incarceration camp. The handwritten notes on the backside read: Obon, Rohwer, Arkansas. A photograph from "Dorothy Ai Aoki photo album" (csudh_oki_0300), page 11. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese ...
Tei Bukkyokai [=Given by Bukkyokai] (ddr-csujad-5-230)
Tei Bukkyokai [=Given by Bukkyokai] (ddr-csujad-5-230)
A photograph of Bukkyokai members possibly taken at the Rhower incarceration camp, Arkansas. This photograph is given by the Bukkyokai to Seiichi Okine. The date, "August 15, 1944," is recorded on the backside. This item is enclosed in an envelope, which is found in item: csudh_oki_0223. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American ...
Granada Christian Church Sunday School news, 1942 (ddr-csujad-7-21)
doc Granada Christian Church Sunday School news, 1942 (ddr-csujad-7-21)
Newsletter put out by the Granada Christian Church for it's congregation. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: HMLSC_Granada Christian Church Sunday School News
Inscription on a Hill (ddr-csujad-13-8)
img Inscription on a Hill (ddr-csujad-13-8)
An inscription was placed on a mountain side that reads, "1943 Aug. 31 Katsumi Sato, Tsutomu Matsumoto, Masato Nakashima, Kiyoshi Fukumitsu Paint Crew." Caption on back of photograph reads, "inscription at top of highest peak by Japs during Christian gathering in Aug 43. Japs inscription is only date of gathering." See this object in the California ...
Manzanar From Inside Out (ddr-csujad-19-2)
doc Manzanar From Inside Out (ddr-csujad-19-2)
Text of address by Roy Nash, Director of the Manzanar War Relocation Project, given to the Commonwealth Club of California, San Francisco, on July 31, 1942 for the purpose of "interpret[ing] the actuality of a War Relocation Center housing 10,000 evacuees" in view of perceptions of mistreatment of incarcerees in California. Sections of the speech include ...
Letter from Herbert Nicholson to Michi Weglyn, October 30, 1980 (ddr-csujad-24-8)
doc Letter from Herbert Nicholson to Michi Weglyn, October 30, 1980 (ddr-csujad-24-8)
A letter from Herbert Nicholson to Michi Weglyn about his experiences working with other religious figures in the Manzanar incarceration camp. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: chi_01_008
Chapter 6 and 7 personality cards (ddr-csujad-26-34)
doc Chapter 6 and 7 personality cards (ddr-csujad-26-34)
Journal entries written by high school students discussing their observations and perspectives on a variety of topics including living in barracks, block noise, lack of privacy, mess hall dining, nosy neighbors, jobs, leisure time, sports, movies, church attendance, the Young Buddhist Association (YBA), family dynamics, social changes, dating, and rumors. Each entry includes the full date ...
History of the Tule Lake Union Church as told to James Sakoda by Rev. Kuroda (ddr-csujad-26-9)
doc History of the Tule Lake Union Church as told to James Sakoda by Rev. Kuroda (ddr-csujad-26-9)
Summary of an interview conducted with Rev. Andrew Kuroda describing the beginnings of the Lake Union Church at Tule Lake including how the church was named, election of ward stewards, the organization of the Church Board of Directors and the congregation. Interview conducted as part of the Japanese American Evacuation and Resettlement Study (JERS). See this ...
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