The No.1 Urakami Hospital stood close to Urakami Cathedral. From the tall steeples of this church, the Angelus Bells faithfully sounded the hour everyday. Since it was located in the middle of Japan's largest Catholic community, the hospital provided space for prayers, confession and other religious activities and served as a spiritual oasis for the war-weary people of Nagasaki.
Dr. Tatsuichiro Akizuki, the only physician on duty at the hospital, was Buddhist by birth but won the love and respect of the Urakami Catholics because of his sincerity and unpretentious character.
Dr. Akizuki and others heard reports about the explosion of a new-type bomb over Hiroshima. Just when they were fretting over this ominous news, an American B-29 bomber was preparing secretly for another attack on Japan. August 9, 1945, 11:02 a.m. A new-type bomb exploded in the sky over Nagasaki, instantly reducing the city to ruins and killing and injuring its residents. Urakami Cathedral was also ravaged, and the Angelus Bells were torn from their steeples and buried under the rubble.
Dr. Akizuki and other survivors strove to help each other, continuing their medical activities despite unspeakable hardships and an ensuing sense of despair. Their motivation was an unmoving conviction that the Angelus Bells would once again ring out over Nagasaki, announcing the resurrection of their city...