Sermon Illustrations

A highly-publicized landmark court ruling in Japan at the new millennium mandated the Japanese government to pay $15 million to 127 plaintiffs for the government’s discriminatory Leprosy Prevention Law that was enacted in 1907. New York Times commented on the case: “Despite popular belief, it is not possible to contract leprosy simply by touching someone who has the disease, which is spread by a bacterium. Once contracted, leprosy attacks the nervous system; untreated, it causes severe deformities. Hands and feet uncurl inward, hair disappears, the nose collapses and flattens, the lips droop. The face often resembles that of a lion. Many of the deformities are the result of a loss of feeling from nerve damage. Patients without a sense of pain or pressure do not notice burns, cuts or bruises, or attend to the pressure sores caused by the disease.” (New York Times 7/5/01 “After 90 Years, Small Gestures of Joy for Lepers”)

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