Last December, we stopped in Hawaii on our way from the mainland to speak at the church that sent a mission team to Japan last year. During our stay, we were invited to meet people from another church who were interested in coming to Japan as volunteers. When we met them, we could tell that they all had a huge heart for Japan and Japanese people. We shared about our ministries and needs of people in the disaster areas. We kept in touch, and they decided to come to Japan!
It was such a blessing to serve with them the last two weeks. They did such a great job with the preparations and we were all amazed by all the things they brought for people in this area. More than anything, we were so blessed by their willingness to serve God and His people.
Here are some highlights of our time with them:
Visiting Sendai Kita Baptist Church.
Barbeque Fellowship at Yoshioka Mission Church.
Distributing flyers for our event at one of the temporary housings.
Visiting one of the kindergartens in the disaster area. Out of 220 students, more than 140 of them were affected by the tsunami.
They sang some English, Hawaiian, and Japanese songs.
Giving a gift from Hawaii to all students and teachers. Hawaiians are SO generous!
Luke was a big helper!
They were so happy!
First temporary housing we visited.
Doing craft activities. These girls were precious!
At the second temporary housing we visited in Oshika Peninsula.
They loved spam musubi (Hawaiian food)!
Look at these beautiful leis they made.
We delivered fresh fruit to people in the temporary housings.
We worked with these wonderful missionaries. We have learned so much from them!
The perfect time to see cherry blossoms!
Lynne’s beautiful hula at the third temporary housing we visited.
They enjoyed hula dance.
Guys talking to people outside while ladies led the craft activities.
These ladies seemed to have a great time making all kinds of stuff!
Fellowship with the community choir (non believers) at our church.
The next few photos are from the Hawaiian Festival. We decided to host a fun event for the kids (and their families) in the community. Even though our area did not get much damage from the earthquake, many kids went through a difficult time due to continuous aftershocks and radiation threat. All the kids seemed to have an awesome time!
In the beginning of this event, the kids in our English class did a presentation in front of their parents. They did a great job and we are so proud of them!
Everyone enjoyed their songs!
Fishing game! We were happy that Luke caught some American snacks!
All the cool prizes.
Enjoying Hawaiian food such as teri burgers and spam musubi. The Hawaii team brought SO MANY cookies and other homemade desserts. Of course, they were a great hit!
Group photo after the worship service on Sunday.
Church-wide picnic after the morning service. We all enjoyed singing together. We are ready for Luke to learn how to play the Ukulele!!!
Luke had fun playing with all the girls!
Last night in Miyagi. We had a delicious meal and shared about our experiences. We were touched by their stories and desire to continue being involved.
This photo of Masa and Luke makes us smile! We are SO thankful that everyone loved on Luke the entire time. It gave us some break from holding/chasing him! Luke was thrilled that he got lots of attention. He is blessed to have many Hawaiian grandpas and grandmas!
Last group photo. We were so sad to see them leave. We thank God for such a great team!
As you can see, they did SO MUCH! They touched and changed countless lives. We have already heard lots of positive responses from the people they had met. Many of them asked when the Hawaii team would come back! We look forward to hosting more teams. Not only the Hawaii team encouraged many people in the disaster area, but they also blessed us! Hawaii has become a very special place for us. They invited us to their churches in Hawaii and we hope to visit them soon!
A big thank you to all the team members for sharing God’s love in so many amazing ways! We miss you!