Reported by A.T. in Iwate on 10 December 1952
I always work hard as a believer in Sekai-Meshiya-kyo and a junior high teacher while being infinitely protected by Meshiya-sama. I have received many graces and guidance for a long period of time but I am very sorry not to have a chance to express my gratitude until now. Here I report when we participated in a junior high school volleyball tournament on 21 July.
It had rained for a few days but became good weather on the day of the tournament, which made everybody’s eyes sparkle. A junior high school volleyball tournament had finally begun, which students were awaited and also afraid of. The yellow uniform numbers looked vividly on their navy-blue sportswear. They reminded me of their exciting hearts. The match had begun. We had to play with the last year’s winning team in our first match, which made the boys nervous. All nine members should be united and moved with no chance to take advantage of the opponents. Otherwise, they would never show their strength. “Calm down and do your best,” I said but my voice was trembling.
The referee’s whistle blew. The students got strained for a moment. The opponent served a ball first. The ball flew with a loud shout. The referee blew the whistle in no time. We lost the most valuable first point which often decided the game. The members just saw the second ball. So, the opponents got two points. The third ball flew. I thought that we lost the point again but the centre of ours soon attacked the ball. I was relieved that our team got a point. However, our player served a ball in a hurry and the opponents got a chance. Then they got a point. The score became three to one. Our team got nervous again. Since then, the situation became too terrible to look at the match. We missed every single ball. The score finally became eleven to three. Both teams changed sides then. The opponent team led eight points. I thought that we couldn’t do it anymore and felt half giving up. So, the team members did. Their body just looked ridged.
The match went on and the score became seventeen to five, it seemed that there would be nothing we could do anymore. We were driven into a corner. The audience said with one voice; “Poor thing.” “This situation would be natural as they must not gain experience.” “They are not stronger than usual. Didn’t they practice well?” They talked to each other as they liked and had sympathy for us, which didn’t make sense. As for me, I came to think that we would not make it and be beaten completely. Even if we were defeated, however, I wanted them to show their strength a little more during the match. Such a feeling rose in my heart.
Without noticing, I hold up my hand towards the team member who was about to serve a ball. He was ready to serve and vigorously threw the first ball. The ball was in the court and the opponent members just missed it. He threw the second one. It was a great ball and we got a point. He continued to serve the ball one after another. The score became seventeen to twelve. I was very glad and saw the uniform number of the server. It was five. Five represents a man and means that something comes up manly. It also represents fire and the positive. It was the greatest number and the first number of five, six and seven or Miroku. I understood why he fought very well. The supporters broke into cheers and applause. We needed five more points to tie. Then it became the opponents’ turn and the score became eighteen to twelve. I finally gave up at that time. However, the opponents were getting nervous. I noticed that they didn’t work well with each other.
The opponents’ ball became ours at first and the score became eighteen to thirteen. So, our turn came again. I was thrilled that much was unexpectedly going on. I held sweat in my left hand and up the right hand towards a student who was about to serve a ball. He made it repeatedly well. We finally tied the score with the opponents. Seventeen to five became eighteen to eighteen. That was like a dream. We stunned with joy. The ball was ours. We were leading. The students fight with sweat. They didn’t seem to get tired like manipulated dolls together. They got high spirit. The student with uniform number six continued to serve the ball. The students carefully passed the ball and scored points, which became twenty. The situation completely changed. No one except for players spoke. We would win with one more point. In a breathtaking moment, the whistle blew. We got a point! We had won with twenty-one to eighteen. It was an unprecedented match.
I couldn’t stop my tears. I held my hands together under the scorching sun forever and ever. In this way, our team became confident and defeated two more opponents without being committed to winning. We won the championship. At the closing ceremony, we held a winning cup reverently with joy amidst a storm of applause. On the next day, students talked to each other. “K(with uniform number five)’s and M(with uniform number six)’s serves were terribly magnificent.” “When we thought that their served ball touched the net, they softly surpassed the net and fell in the opponents’ court.” “That was strange indeed.” “Then they got off the mark for the opponents.” They said amazingly and wonderingly. I am sorry that my writing is not good enough but here I finish reporting what exactly happened to us with full of joy. Thank you very much, Meshiya-sama. I sincerely thank you.
Translated by N.H.