For the last few months, as we’ve been able to meet together, it’s been encouraging to see our church family continuing to grow in many different ways. Our outreach events have helped many new people to hear the Gospel, and we’re seeing consistent growth as a church family as well. Our Father is so good and kind in how he cares for us!
Outreach Events- They kept showing up!
In November, about a month and a half after the emergency status in Tokyo was lifted, we held our first “tentative” outreach event with a Thanksgiving dinner Sunday. I had no idea how many people would come, as people were still a little wary of Covid. So, we decided to hold the event at our church, and set up tables to see what would happen. In no time, our little auditorium was filled! That Sunday we had 9 first-time visitors, along with many friends and family members of our church family who had been away for nearly a year.
So, for Christmas, we decided to rent a hall to have more space, and hold two events back-to-back. On Saturday, December 18, we held a children’s Christmas event, and then on Sunday, December 19, we had a Christmas candlelight service. At the children’s event, we had 50 children and parents attend! Over half of them, 22 children and 9 parents, were visitors!
The next day, for the candlelight service, we had an entirely different group of people come, and again, over 50 people came! During the service, people kept arriving and filling up the seats. It was awesome! For this service, we had 31 visitors as well, and over 50 in attendance. For us here in Japan, it was very encouraging to see so many people willing to come to hear the story of the Gospel through the birth of Jesus!
A week and a half later, we got together with another Baptist Church for a snow camp. I had the opportunity to speak to the campers throughout the 3 days of camp, and it was good to see decisions made throughout the time at camp.
Over the last year we’ve lost nearly half of our church family due to covid restrictions as well as other reasons, but God has been so gracious to us. As we’ve been meeting just in the last few months, our church Sunday gathering has been gradually and consistently growing. While we are still not where we were before Covid, that’s ok. God is giving us many new people to witness to, as well as new families to encourage and help to grow in their faith!
Here are a few things that we would love for you to pray for. As the Omicron variant is starting to surge here in Japan, several surrounding prefectures are moving toward another emergency status. Please pray for the numbers to stay down so that that the churches in these prefectures, as well as ours and those here in Tokyo will continue to be able to gather together. Also please pray for those who heard the Gospel at the different outreach events, that they will be further drawn to the good news of the Gospel and be willing to put their faith in Christ. Pray for us as well, for wisdom and grace throughout the coming months as we help our brothers and sisters to grow in their faith, and to reach those around us with the Gospel.
To download a printable pdf, please click here.