Where Was Jesus Buried? – An Alternative Japanese Legend
While most Christians agree that Jesus died on the cross at Calvary (Golgotha), Jerusalem, there are at least some, to be found in Northern Japan, who disagree. Believing instead that Jesus died in Japan.
The legend of how Jesus came to be buried in the small Japanese town known as ‘Shingo’, differs somewhat from anything that you might have read in the Bible. Telling of how Jesus did not die in Calvary, but that instead, one of his brothers took his place upon the cross, and that Jesus escaped across Siberia, to Japan – where he settled as a married man, and rice farmer, until the day he died there.
Should you visit Shingo (known locally as ‘Kirisuto no Sato’ – which translates to “Hometown of Christ”), a town in south-central Aomori Prefecture, east of Lake Towada, known for (if anything other than the Jesus legend) its garlic farms, and apple orchards, just a short way out of town, halfway up a mountainside, you’ll be able to pay homage to the son of a God, with offerings of five yen coins, at what locals believe to be the true grave of Jesus Christ – A relatively humble plot consisting of an earth mound surrounded by a white picket fence, topped off with a simple wooden cross.
In truth, with Japan’s population being primarily Buddhist, and with only around 1% of its population being Christians, the legend is not particularly widespread, or supported, even within Japan. One point of interest though, regarding the legend, is that with Jesus having said to have settled, and married in Shingo – is that Jesus’s offspring, and descendants, are still said to live in the area. Meaning that that nice portly gentleman serving you your apple ice-cream (should you be visiting the area) might just have a touch of the divine about him, being a messianic Japanese garlic farmer – and the son, of the son, of a son, of the son of God…