Captain Masuo Kitaji


The pair of Kitaji Bibles were owned, transcribed, and illustrated by the late Captain Masuo Kitaji who lived at GYHS from 1945 to 1973.


One of the Bibles was a 10-year labor of commitment to create a bilingual resource for ministers working with bilingual followers. Captain Kitaji said he had to preach to worshipers in both English and Japanese while serving as the Japanese Salvation Army Corp leader in Oakland in 1932. That’s when he conceived the idea of creating a bilingual version of the Bible.


He began implementation in 1935 transcribing passages from the accepted Japanese translation of the time, onto blank pages bound between the printed pages. He worked daily, from 5 a.m. to noon, for ten years, announcing it’s completion in 1945 while he was held in the WWII detention camp at Poston, AZ. The result is a book of face-to-face passages in each language.

The Kitaji Bible Project

Like many family Bibles, these volumes record family milestones –births, baptisms, marriages, and death. These also note historic events (birthdates of US Presidents, space capsule launches, World War II battles, the atomic bomb, etc.)

What makes these Bibles truly extraordinary is the clear, nearly flawless handwriting (no blotches, no cross-outs) and exquisite illustrations by The Captain. Museum and archive curators say

they have not seen this caliber of writing and illustrating other than the work of medieval monks!


The goal of the Kitaji Bible Project is to digitize the bibles,  translate old Japanese text into English and making it available to a wider audience. The bibles will then be donated to the Hoover Archives at Stanford University.



Please donate today to help with this historic project!


Use this Paypal link to donate to the Kitaji Bible Project

Our federal Tax ID number is 94-2308466. Your donations are tax deductible.