As all eyes turn to Tokyo for the Olympics and Paralympics, Japanese Christians are inviting the global Church to unite for one million hours of prayer for the spiritual transformation of their nation especially as they are in the middle of a Covid-19 lockdown.   Japan1Million is an international prayer movement led by the Japan international Sports Partnership (JiSP) and the Japan Evangelical Missionary Association (JEMA) during the 30 days of the Olympics and Paralympics starting on 23 July. 

“Our sports partnership is driven by a vision to see the Church in Japan grow to 10 million people by 2024,” said JiSP director Pastor Keishi Ikeda. “Working towards that vision, we had hoped to reach a million Japanese people during our Olympic outreach year. Covid closed those doors, but one door remained open; the door to prayer.”

With less than one per cent of its population of 126 million attending church, the Japanese are the world’s second largest un-reached people group. Most people in Japan have not been to church, read the Bible or know any Christians. 

“Committed prayer is needed for a significant spiritual breakthrough in Japan. We believe Alfred Tennyson words, ‘more things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of,’” said Pastor Keishi.

Individuals, families, Churches and organizations can register on the Japan1Million website to record their prayer hours as well as access daily prayer updates, information about Japan and Zoom gatherings led by the JiSP and JEMA teams.

In partnership with the YouVersion Bible app, the team has also launched Pray 4 Japan, a 17-day Bible and prayer plan available globally in English and Japanese.

“Imagine the impact of hundreds of thousands of Jesus followers around the world praying with one accord for just one nation? What would God do?” asks Nathan Snow, the chair of JEMA.  “We are preparing for the greatest movement of united prayer in reaching Japan for Christ. Will you join us?”