Date: April 19-23, 2023
Place: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Organizer: Canada Branch (Branch Chief Andre Gilbert)
Canada Gilbert Branch organized a series of events, featuring Shihan Shinichi Sotodate 6th Dan of Japan from 19th to 23rd April 2023.
On April 19th, was the arrival of Shihan Sotodate from Japan to Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The main purpose of his visit was an extraordinary grading exam for all North America.
The first event took place on April 20th. The pre-test for all candidates passing their black belt from shodan to yondan at the dojo of André Gilbert Shihan. The pre-test was a great success, and we were all impressed by the quality of Shinichi Sotodate Shihan’s teaching.
On Saturday, April 22nd, at the opening ceremony of the 32nd championship, the speech given by Shinichi Shihan Sotodate was very much appreciated by the competitors and the public.
Mr. Sotodate received a great round of applause for his very motivating and humbling speech. The Consul General, Mr. Jun SAITO from Consulate General of Japan in Montreal
was also present and was excited to see the enormous progress and the number of competitors for this huge event. We also received a letter from the Prime Minister of Canada, Mr.Justin Trudeau who wished us good luck for the tournament and thus giving a lot of prestige for WKO Shinkyokushin Canada.
At the 32nd Canadian championship, on April 22nd, 300 competitors were present and on Sunday, April 23rd, 200 students (children and adults) were present. The students came from all over North America. During this magnificent seminar, 95% of the North American Branch Chiefs and contacts were present.
The international Shinkyokushin organization is happy to have such a warm, humble and high-class representative for this prestigious event. Mr. Sotodate was kind enough to give time to anyone who wanted to shake hands and take pictures with him. Mr. Sotodate is part of our family in North America. I would like to add that this was the first time in North America that we had a grading for all black belt levels (shodan to yondan). The candidates truly appreciated this event. During the weekend of the championship and the seminar, I was thanked for what I have done for this great organization.
A very humble thank you to Mr. Shinichi Sotodate for his presence in our country.
Shihan André Gilbert