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ICC Note: A museum in Nagasaki opened earlier this month in remembrance of the 26 Christians who were killed for their faith before Japan legalized the religion in the 19th century. Nagasaki was the site of a mass crucifixion of 26 Christians, comprised of six missionaries and 20 Japanese believers.  

 04/10/2018 Japan (Christian Post) – A museum in Japan created in remembrance of Christians killed for their faith before Christianity was legalized in that country in the 19th century has opened.

The museum was officially opened earlier this month and is located at the historic Oura Church in Nagasaki, according to Japan Today.

“The Catholic Archdiocese of Nagasaki renovated the former Latin seminary and a former residence of bishops on the premises of Oura Church, which is designated as a national treasure, into the museum,” Japan Today reported on Monday.

“The new facility highlights Japan’s religious history with panels explaining different periods of time, such as the introduction of Catholicism to the country and a period in which Christians hid themselves to practice their faith in secret amid persecution by authorities.”

Francis Xavier, a 16th century missionary, is credited with having introduced Christianity to Japan back in 1549. As Japan became politically unified, persecution against Christians increased.

In 1597, Nagasaki was the site of a mass crucifixion of 26 Christians, comprised of six missionaries and 20 Japanese believers. A monument was built in their honor in 1962, which was the 100th anniversary of their canonization.

The long period of Christian persecution in Japan was recently the subject of a film by Martin Scorsese titled Silence.

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For interviews with Gina Goh, ICC’s Regional Manager, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: press@persecution.org