My apologies for the long absence on the blog, I’ve been quite busy as of late and sadly have not found the time to dedicate to any new posts. That said, while I do have some free time I would like to just briefly discuss the amazing workings of the Holy Spirit. As believers, many of us like to share and openly discuss our faith in the hopes of one day converting others. In other words, by sharing our faith, we plant the Seeds of Faith in others. Thereby when one opens their hearts to God’s Love and Grace, those seeds, nurtured through the Holy Spirit, will then begin to take root and grow. A great illustration of this can be found in the conversion story of the late Kochi Momoko.
Though not a household name in the U.S., Kochi Momoko was well known in Japan, and certainly well known to fans and enthusiast of the old “kaiju” (strange creature) films. To that end, Momoko was the female lead in her first major film appearance, the original 1954 classic, “Gojira”, titled “Godzilla: King of the Monsters” in the American version of the film. With the success of Godzilla, she became type cast and was largely relegated to other kaiju films, or creature features. By 1959 she decided to become a more formal actress, thereafter pursuing a largely stage oriented career with the occasional film or television role.
Enter Father James Hyatt, whom felt God’s calling to be a missionary in Japan. He had a burning passion to spread the Gospel to the Japanese people, and the innovativeness to use any and all means of mass communication outlets to achieve this goal. To that end, Father Hyatt started a daily radio program titled, “The Light of the Heart”, which was carried by only one radio station during its launch in 1958, but decades later is now broadcast by over thirty radio networks across the entire nation of Japan. In fact, it is the longest running program to date in the history of Japanese radio.
Shortly after the program’s launch, Momoko was hired to narrate the program’s broadcasts. A role she would perform for more than thirty years, until the last year of her life, when she became hospitalized with colon cancer. Shortly before her death, she reportedly told her daughter that among her many accomplishments, she was the most proudest of two things: her daughter and the reading/narration she provided to “The Light of the Heart” program, which she described as her life work. Bedridden, she then asked her daughter to arrange her Baptism, and on October 29, 1998, at the age of 66, and less than one week before her death, Kochi Momoko was Baptized. Father Hyatt would officiate both her wake and funeral. The funeral was held on November 9, 1998, at St. Ignatius Church, and more than one thousand mourners attended. Included among the attendees was Cardinal Peter Shiravanagi of Tokyo.
Kochi Momoko’s story stands as a powerful witness to the amazing workings of the Holy Spirit. It demonstrates how the Seeds of Faith can really take root overtime, and that no one is ever too old, nor is it ever too late, to receive Christ and undergo Baptism. I find it an inspirational story, and hope others do too.
Thank you for reading. God Bless!