Edge of Faith March 2017 - Page 6

Sure.Sure, Shusaku Endo is a Japanese novelist, twentieth century — died in 1995, I believe. His first novel was a novel called “Silence” and it surprisingly became a best-seller, despite the fact that it talks about a very beauty it was troublesome past of Japanese culture, which began in sixteenth century. The novel takes place in seventeenth century Japan of two young Portuguese missionaries coming into Japan, which was forbidden. It was closed to Christianity and Christians were being persecuted by the dictatorial forces that consolidated Japan at the time. So, these young priests are fictional names, but they are based on true, historical figures and the tales of their

capture, their torture. It is not an easy book to read, especially if you're Christian, since it deals with persecution. At the same time, Endo is a highly descriptive, beautiful writer who told this universal story of post-war conditions. He describes these psychological traits of those who are traumatized by wars, and what is expanding — Ground Zeroes of the world. And His novel, “Silence,” became a national best-seller in Japan. When it was translated into English, it became a global best-seller to the extent that Martin Scorsese found himself fascinated by this story, enough to create what he has called his “life work” movie which is upcoming, either the end of this year or next year.

Yeah, right, I look forward to watching the movie as well. I think the last I saw it, it was probably November, or something like that.

Yeah, we hope so. We are not quite sure, but Father Rodrigues is played by Andrew Garfield, Father Garrpe by Adam Driver and Father Ferreria, who these younger priests sought to find in Japan, is played by Liam Neeson. So this is quite the cast.

Wow … So, on to the next question. You were somewhat inspired by Endo. Could you

elaborate how and why?

Right, and my encounter with Endo came very early. I read Endo in college, but I was not a Christian, and I had a little bit of a different take on it. When I went to Japan, I found myself drawn to Christ through my wife. As I was just baptized in Christian faith, I walked into a national museum near my studio, and along with seventieth century masterpieces of Nampa screens — they are very beautiful decorative screens — was this little dark room to the side. I went in and saw what looked like plates lined up in the display case, all nineteen of them, and found out that this was

The Japanese, being so highly visual and honest, they could actually tell who would be holding faith to Jesus.