Saturday, August 09, 2014

Urakami Cathedral

Urakami Cathedral

On August 9, 1945 the American Air Force dropped the atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan. They used as their reference point the most visible building in the part of Nagasaki with munitions factories: St. Mary's Cathedral, usually known as Urakami Cathedral because of its location in the Urakami valley. The Cathedral was one of the largest churches in Asia. The bomb detonated less than two thousand feet from the Cathedral itself, obliterating most of it. There may have been a Mass going on at the time; if so, everyone there was vaporized in an instant. Since the area had the highest concentration of Catholics in Japan, somewhere around ten thousand Catholics died in the next few moments alone.

The current cathedral was rebuilt in the late 1950s.

4 comments:

  1. Enbrethiliel9:13 AM

    +JMJ+

    I don't know whether it's intentional on your part, but whenever you write about history, your posts seem to reflect the present with uncanny sharpness.

    Along other lines, have you read The Lord of the World by Robert Hugh Benson? I won't add the next spoilerish line until you say you have or until you say it's all right for me to do so.

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  2. branemrys9:18 AM

    Almost certainly unintentional!

    I have read The Lord of the World - a couple of times, actually.

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  3. Enbrethiliel10:09 AM

    +JMJ+



    In that case, my last sentence should have been: "Being vaporised during Mass isn't such a bad way to go."


    That's probably not the most sensitive thing to say about something that is an atrocity, but I have faith that things look different on the other side of death.

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  4. branemrys10:37 AM

    True; if one thinks of all the things one could be doing at one's very sudden death, there aren't many things that would even be in the same league.

    ReplyDelete

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