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American Evangelists and Tuberculosis in Modern Japan$
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Elisheva A. Perelman

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9789888528141

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888528141.001.0001

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“Now is the Day for Japan”

“Now is the Day for Japan”


(p.79) 6 “Now is the Day for Japan”
American Evangelists and Tuberculosis in Modern Japan

Elisheva A. Perelman

Hong Kong University Press

Chapter VI analyzes the arrival of the Young Men’s Christian Association in Japan and with it, the rise of the moral enterprise in evangelical work. For the Y.M.C.A., this meant balancing the need for converts in the nation with maintaining an amiable relationship with the Japanese government, both for the survival of the organization and for the presentation of powerful sponsorship to the home office of the Y.M.C.A. and its donors abroad. The organization found a successful niche with the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05, serving as army workers on the front lines and on the home front. By ministering to soldiers, the Y.M.C.A. managed to ingratiate itself with both the military and the government, although these friendly ties did not eventuate in mass conversions to Christianity. Similarly, the work of the organization in the aftermath of the Great Kantō Earthquake of 1923 helped appease government naysayers. Nevertheless, these efforts were often at the cost of attention to problems like tuberculosis plaguing the Japanese state.

Keywords:   Y.M.C.A, Army work, Russo-Japanese War, Great Kantō Earthquake

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