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Kamigoto 1: Ebukuro Church

The oldest wooden church in Japan

In Japan, Catholicism was banned by the Japanese government from the early Edo period to the beginning of the Meiji period (1614 - 1873). Japanese Christians who tried to escape oppression went underground and practiced their forbidden religion secretly. They were called 'Kakure (hidden) Christians' and some of them escaped to the Goto Islands, which is the reason there are many churches here. Ebukuro Church was built in 1882, and it's the oldest wooden church in Japan. Although it was burnt down by fire in 2007, it was restored in 2010 using the undamaged remains of the original church. Please see photos for details.

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