7/29/19 Departure

Today, the team went their separate ways. Danny and Monica headed to Narita Airport as they are leaving today. Hiroko and Amelya will be going home on Wednesday and Erica Shizuka will be leaving on Friday. We thank you so much for all of your support and prayers throughout this mission. We would not have been able to do it without your support. Thank you.

Please pray for as until we get back home safely. Thanks again!

God bless you guys!

Love,

Sendai Mission Team 2019

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7/28/19 Last Sunday Service

On Sunday, the Sendai Church led the service. Hiroko shared her personal testimony and Erica did the message. The service went well, and everyone stated how they were touched by the testimony and message. We also exchanged gifts  as a church. After service we had a luncheon together and shared our thoughts on the mission. We had build your own sandwhiches, home grown salad, the second best tofu in Japan, and other sides. Most shared about their feelings before the mission and then after the mission and how God worked through the mission. It was a bittersweet luncheon, as we were so thankful for the mission and all the great works God did, but we were sad that it was already over. This year, the mission went by so fast and we wish that we had more time. But our hearts are full since God has worked in wonderous ways this year, and we are excited for the next mission.

Love,

Sendai Mission Team 2019

7/27/19 Taco Party & Home Meeting

On Saturday, we had a taco party for families from EEC to come and hang out with us. We also had some families who were not able to participate in EEC join us. There were a total of about 75-80 people!! We have never had this many people come before! We usually have a BBQ after EEC and have about 25 people or so come. We were so surprised and happy to have this many people come! On the second day of EEC, we give the kids a survey for their parents to fill out, and one of the questions on the survey was if the families will join us for the taco party on Saturday. We were expecting about 50+ people judging from the survey results, and we became anxious whether we had enough food for everybody! We brought necessary ingredients from America like, tortillas and taco seasoning, which we are unable to get in Japan. But thankfully, we had enough food for everybody, and all the families seemed to have really enjoyed the tacos. We also made nachos, fried oreos, and shaved ice. There were so many people, that we decided to serve the food outside, so that everyone can eat inside the sanctuary. We even had a family from Santa Barbara who are currently living in Japan join us. Everyone had a lot of fun and we are very thankful for everyone who came.

At night we had a house meeting at Kinuko-san’s house. Kinuko-san is a church member who always host a house meeting during the mission. At the house meeting, Kimiko-sensei (Pastor Nakada’s wife) did a short message and Shizuka did a personal testimony. Then, we got to eat a great meal made by Kinuko-san, her family, and Hisako-san. We got to eat to our hearts content and enjoyed having fellowship with one another.

 

Sorry for the delay in uploading our blog. Many of us have not been feeling well which is why it has been delayed. Thank you for your understanding and prayers.

 

Love,

Sendai Mission Team 2019

Higashi-Matsushima 7/26/19

Today was free day, so we decided to go to Higashi-Matsushima and Matsushima. Pastor Nakada and Hisako, a EEC volunteer, drove us there which is about an hour away. Hisako, is a non-christian, but has been volunteering at EEC for a long time and she also helps out at the church as well. She is very kind and is always bringing us food or anything we may need. We are very grateful for her and her time.

We first went to Higashi-Matsushima, and went on a small boat tour to see all the small islands around that area. The tour was about an hour and we had a really good time. The boat captain was very humurous and made the ride very enjoyable. We then went to Kibotcha which used to be an elementary school, but after it was damaged by the tsunami back in 2011, they renovated into a restaruant and a place to learn what to do when there is a disaster like an earthquake and tsunami. They have a children’s playroom which is made so that the children can learn how to act when there is a fire, earthquake, tsunami etc. They also have programs which teach those skills and knowledge. We went there to eat lunch and to look around the area since that whole area was destroyed by the tsunami. Most home had to be rebuilt or renovated because of the damage. Many homes only had a foundation left, so they rebuilt the house on top of that foundation. They were still making houses today.

We then went to the 3.11 Disaster Recovery Memorial Museum which was nearby. There was a train station right next to the museum which is no longer in use since the tsunami. They relocated the train station to higher up in the mountains to prevent further destruction in case of another disaster. Thankfully, many people that were on the train when the earthquake happened, survived because the train went to a station further up in the mountains, where the tsunami did not reach. The museum was affected by the tsunami and the people working there escaped to the second floor. The water barely stopped just before the second floor. Because the water seemed like it was going to flood to the second floor, people started stacking tables outside on the patio to escape on the roof. But since the water stopped just before the second floor, everybody in the museum survived. In the museum, the tour guide explaned to us which areas were most affected, how people tried to escape, and shared with us their personal experience with the tsunami. It was very difficult and heartwrenching to see the photos that were displayed. They later played a video with English subtitles, which was a documentary about the 3.11 earthquake and tsunami. They interviewed victims of the tsunami, and it was tough to listen to their stories and how they lost loved ones. Many people died not only by getting swept away by the tsunami and drowning, but by hypothermia, because it was so cold. The weather was about -8 Celcius and people who got wet from the tsunami, froze to death if they were not able to warm themselves up. But it was nice to see how they rebuilt and how they are taking precautions so that when another tsunami comes, there won’t be as many victims.

After we visited the museum, we went to Matsushima, and walked around for about 30 minutes before we had to go back home. Once we got back, Hajime Yumoto, from Chino Christ Church visited us! Hajime is a member of Chino Christ Church, which is the church we used to send a mission team to. It was very nice to see him and hear about how the people at the church are doing. He drove a long way for us and we really appreciate his time and am grateful to have been able to see him.

For dinner we had beef tongue and it was so delicious! Unfortunately, Monica could not join us as she was not feeling well. Please pray for her as she feels a little sick. Danny also feels sick but he claimed that if he eats beef tongue, he would feel better. But please pray for him as well since we have a taco party tomorrow for the children and families who came to EEC. We will have about 50+ people coming and we are very excited! We have never had this many people come to the Saturday lunch gathering so we are a little concerned if we have enough food. But we are so grateful that we are going to have so many people coming! We miss the kids already so we cannot wait to see them again!

We thank you for your continued support and prayers! We are all very exhausted, so please pray that we can stay healthy and to heal those who are not feeling well.

Thank you again.

Love,

Sendai Mission Team 2019

ハレルヤ!

ハレルヤ!

7月18日にミッションへ出発してほぼ1週間が経ちましたが、順調にミッションのスケジュールも守られ、皆さまのお祈りに心から感謝です。

19日夜に仙台教会到着後、20日夜に「中高生・青年ムービーナイト」、21日午後に「親子で一緒に!英語でクッキング」が行われ、それぞれノンクリスチャンの参加者が与えられました。21日の聖日礼拝では、アメリア姉の証しと、ダニー兄が「無駄な事はない(第一コリント15章57、58節)」と題してメッセージを取り次ぎ、またミッションチームのリードで礼拝をもちました。

仙台は例年に比べ梅雨明けが遅く、雨模様が続いており、昨日のEEC初日は1日中雨でしたが、元気な38人のこどもが参加して聖書クラス、クラフト、ゲーム、英会話のクラス、またアッセンブリーでは歌って踊って、と梅雨も吹き飛ばしそうな勢いで、楽しく元気に参加しています。今日の2日目はクレイジーヘアーデイ、明日はクレイジーソックスデイとなり、子供たちはもちろんミッションチームも参加して盛り上げます

EECは明日が最終日、子供達に福音の種が蒔かれ、いつの日か実が結ばれるようにと願います。

ミッションもいよいよ後半戦になりましたが、引き続き仙台教会と御霊による一致を保ち、主の働き人として共に宣教に励みたいと思います。

蒸し暑い日が続いていますが、参加する子供たち、また仙台教会、ミッションチーム全員の霊性と体調が守られるようお祈りにください。

 

主に感謝して

仙台ミッションチーム

 

 

EEC Day 3!

Hallelujah!

We praise the name of the Lord!

It’s been physically tiring three days, but it was a blessing and a rewarding experience!

Since today was the last day of EEC, the schedule was packed with various programs. In the opening assembly, we reinforced our theme that Christ is our greatest gift. For the Bible class, Shizuka broke down what sin means so that kids can understand, and the work of Christ at the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. Shizuka explained the significance of Christ’s work and the relationship we receive with God by going over John 3:16. We had a three year old boy, who was crying on the first two days of EEC, but today, not only did he not cry, but he recited John 3:16 in front of the whole class! Although children may not fully understand the gospel, we rejoice that the seed that has been sown will not end in vain in the eyes of God.

Another blessing was that the weather has been so great these past three days. Daniel who was responsible for Game Class for EEC planned to do indoor games on first two days, and outdoor games on the third day of EEC. The first two days were cloudy and rained a little bit. But on the third day, it was sunny! God has really answered our prayers and gave us the perfect weather! We thank you for your prayers.

After EEC, we had a staff debrief meeting, and it was such joy to hear the parent’s comments about the EEC. It seemed like all of the comments were positive, and there wasn’t any negative ones. Today, the two helpers mentioned in the previous post departed. Rena, who has been such a blessing for the team and especially in the English class, went back home. Motomu, who has been such a joy to have for the kids and all staff also left, since he needs to go back to the church he is currently serving as an intern/main pastor.

All our mission team members are physically exhausted, but we’ve had such a blessed day.

Thank you for all your prayers and support.

Blessings in Christ,

2019 Sendai Mission Team

EEC Day 2

Today was the second day of EEC. It was crazy hair day today and we got to see a lot of creative crazy hair styles! It was so much fun seeing creativity they had in making their cray hair.

I forgot to mention this in the last post but this year, we have two helpers that came for EEC. One of the helpers is Motomu who is a seminary student and has helped before back in 2016. He is the team leader for the oldest kids and is only here for the three days of EEC. The second helper is Rena, who speaks both Japanese and English. She is helping Monica in English class which has been a huge help. She is actually going to Indiana next month to get her masters degree and teach Japanese.

Today, the weather was warmer, which was nice since there was no rain. But it started raining around evening so please pray that it is sunny tomorrow. We are planning to play games outside with water tomorrow but if it rains, we are not able to do that.

In bible class, we went over the story of the prodigal son. All the kids listened earnestly and was interested in the story. In English class, we taught them the months, days, body parts, and etc. in English. In crafts, they made a small book that showed how Jesus covers their sins. We went over what sin was and how if we repent, God forgives us.

At closing assembly we usually ask the kids some questions, and if they answer they get a candy. Some of the questions we usually ask are, ‘which class was your favorite?’ or ‘what is the theme?’ But this time, we asked the kids what they learned in bible class. One of the kids explained in detail, the story of the prodigal son. It was really encouraging and exciting to see how well the children listen in bible class.

We have crazy socks day tomorrow and still have preparation like the slideshow to do so we are all very tired and may not get enough sleep tonight. But we know that this is for God’s glory. We are very sad that EEC is coming to an end so soon. Please pray for us as we are very sleep deprived. But more importantly please pray that these kids will remember what they learned at EEC and continue to come to church events and EEC.

Thank you for your continuous prayers.

Sendai Mission Team

7/22 Monday and EEC Day 1 (Tuesday 7/23)

Hi all!

Hope you are all well. We apologize for not uploading a blog yesterday, we were busy with preparing for EEC so we did not have time to upload anything. Monday, was the day we decorated the church for EEC and got everything ready.  There was a lot of preparation to be done but with the help of  a few church members, we were able to finish in time. The decorations turned out really nice in the sanctuary.

On Tuesday, the first day of EEC, we had devotion at 6:30AM, had breakfast, did last minute preparations, and had a staff meeting before EEC started. We rent out a community center which is two houses down from the church, to use for craft and game class. The church is too small to have all four classes, so we also use the coomunity center. Unfortunately, it rained all day so it was sort of difficult and a hassle when going to the community center and back. But thankfully, it didn’t rain too hard.

This year, most of the children attending EEC are returnees so it was nice seeing familiar faces, and seeing how much they have grown since last year. Since it is the first day, the mission team members wore costumes, and led the opening assembly. Although the temperature was cooler than usual, it was still very hot wearing those costumes when we sang and danced. It was fun seeing the children excited to sing and dance. There are four teams this year since we have 38 kids attending EEC whereas last year we had three teams.

Once opening assembly finished, we sent each team to a class. The four classes we had are bible, English, craft, and games. EEC is sort of like school where we rotate classes and have lunch in between. EEC starts at 9:40 and ends at 3:00. In bible class today, we talked about the story of Jesus’ birth. We had scenes from when Mary was visisted by an angel to when the three wise men visited Jesus in the manger, and had the children put them in order as a group. We also had the children start to memorize John 3:16 since that is the verse for this year. The younger children learned half of it today, and the older children tried to memorize the entire verse. The bible class is the only class done in Japanese, as we want the children to really learn about the bible and remember it for the rest of their lives. We were very happy to hear that some of the childrens’ favorite class today, was bible class.

After EEC was over we had a meeting to discuss about the next day and to talk about areas we need improvement on. Overall, we thought that everything went smoothly ane was satisfied with how things went today.

Tomorrow is crazy hair day and there will be three winners on who has the craziest hair. We are excited to see what kind of crazy hair styles we will see tomorrow.

Thank you for continuing to pray for us! Please pray that the weather will be better tomorrow. It seems it will be much hotter tomorrow so please pray that no one gets heat stroke. We hope that all the kids that come will have a good time tomorrow but more importantly, take in more of God’s word.

In Christ,

Sendai Mission Team

Saturday (20th) and Sunday (21st) Event

Hallelujah!

We thank the Lord for His continual mercy and your prayers.

The past two days have been very eventful.

Yesterday (Sat), we began our day with daily devotion and prayer.

One of the team members suspected she had an eye infection, so she was taken to the ophthalmologist. Thanks to the Lord, it was not an eye infection, but a dry eye. Afterwards, we went to Costco and Daiso (Japanese version of dollar store) to purchase all of the necessary items for English Experience Camp and other events.

After we came home, we immediately started preparing for the worship service. From 6PM, we had a movie night to invite middle school and high school kids to come to church. Two kids came, and we had such a blessed time together. The boy who came (Yorihiko) came to serve at EEC few years ago, and knew some people from the mission team. He enjoyed the dinner fellowship and the movie night so much, he didn’t want to leave! He came with the team to the public bath, so he can spend more time with us.

Today (Sunday), we started our day again with devotional and prayer.

After breakfast, we quickly prepared for the Mommy and me cooking class which was scheduled after worship service. We then had our worship service, which Amelya shared her testimony and Daniel gave the message. After service, we had a fellowship luncheon with church members. We were so thankful for their warm hospitality and love.

We began our Mommy and me cooking class at the church, and total of about 25 people came! We made ice cream, mud pudding with gummy worms, and ate some fried oreos. The family seemed to enjoy the event so much. We were so thankful that there were such a high turn out.

From 4PM, we had our EEC staff meeting, where each team members were able to explain and go over their class plans. Tomorrow, we will finish decorating the church for EEC, which will most likely take the entire day.

We continue to ask for your prayers that our team will be spiritually, physically, and emotionally ready to serve the Lord.

In Christ,

2019 Sendai Mission Team

 

Arrived safely!

Hallelujah!

We praise the name of the Lord.

Thanks to the Lord and your prayers, we arrived at Narita airport and to Sendai church safely! There was a minor delay at Narita, but it was not long.

We are so thankful that the Lord had kept us safe from any major accidents.

After we came to the Sendai Church, we gave thanks to the Lord for His protection, and briefly went over tomorrow’s schedule.

We will be taking a bath and sleep right away.

Thank you again for your prayers.

In Christ,

2019 Sendai Mission Team