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The kirishitan barbarians worshipped the symbol, saying that it was on such a cross that their god was nailed to die.
It could have been Sumitada, perhaps, who had converted to the kirishitan religion and called himself Bartoromeo now.
One of the survival tactics of the kakure kirishitan or Äúhidden ChristiansÄù was to set up altars to Mary and the Christ-child in the guise of the Buddhist goddess of compassion, Kannon known in China as Guanyin, who is often depicted cradling a small child.
So what can we learn from comparing the syncretism of Mormo-Pagan women and the kakure kirishitan?
When the ban on Christianity was removed in the 1860s, after two and a half centuries of prohibition, many of the kakure kirishitan were warmly welcomed back into the Catholic Church.
Instead of recantation or death, the kakure kirishitan created a third option that allowed them to believe and live.