Oshika Town Tsunami

July 31, 2012

This video was made by our friends of Oshika Town.  The videos within were taken shortly after the 3-11 earthquake and just as the tsunami hit destroying their town.  There was a lot of rubble to clear away.  They have made great strides in cleaning up the town and have begun to rebuild in certain areas.  There is still a lot of work to be done.  This is one of the areas we often visit.  The people are very gracious and hard working.  Credit for this video goes to the good people of Oshika Town.


Categories: Aid for Japan.

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Helping Hands

March 18, 2012

The past year has brought a lot of people into our lives.  We were surrounded by many Christians who took great care of us in South Korea.  We were also blessed by those who came to Japan to help with the cleaning, rebuilding, and rehabilitation of this country.  We are truly thankful for each and every person that God has placed along our path during this long and often difficult process.  One particular courageous soul is Naomi who helped us last weekend.  Naomi lives in Hawaii whose grandparents were originally from Japan. We first met her last December when we were in Hawaii to share with Olivet Baptist Church about our work.  Prior to this trip, she had taken several trips to Japan to learn the culture and get to know people here.  This trip was very special for her because this was her first time to help with the disaster relief work in the tsunami-hit areas.

Saturday morning we set out to Oshika Peninsula to visit about 80 temporary housing units that would be receiving food, flowers, and time with us and church members from Sendai.  Naomi had been planing on this trip for a few months.  She prepared gifts for every household and homemade cookies.  We had a great time sharing with each other about our lives as we made the two hour trip to the peninsula.

Thank you for coming all the way to Sendai to love and encourage those in need.  We enjoyed our time together!










We hope many of you will pray about coming to Japan.  There are many ways to serve- visiting the temporary housings to meet people, delivering food, playing with children, teaching English, encouraging Japanese Christians, sharing your testimonies, and spending time with us! We love having guests!  Even though we love this country and people, we do get homesick and miss our family and friends in the US.  So having our friends here means so much to us.  Thank you in advance for praying about coming here in the future.  We understand some of you may not be able to come physically.  There are other ways to help with the ministries here.  Just contact us and we will find a way for you to be involved.  We LOVE getting e-mails, letters, phone calls, and packages!!!

Categories: Aid for Japan, Hope for Japan News, Prayer Needs.

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March 11, 2011 Memorial

March 9, 2012

Sunday marks the one year anniversary of the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake. The event began with a 9.0 magnitude earthquake in which most of the the buildings and homes survived.  They were made for such events.  The following tsunami however was certainly not anticipated nor forgiving.  This video is a tribute to the people in the disaster areas and the continuing work to rebuild physically and emotionally.  We hope you know how much they appreciate your prayers and support.  Please continue to pray for the victims’ families and for the Christians who are working with them.  We send a huge “THANK YOU” to everyone who has supported us the past year and has unceasingly prayed.  You have encouraged us so much.  We are so thankful for the friendships built over the past year and pray more to understand and walk the “Jesus Way”.

Categories: Aid for Japan, Hope for Japan News, Prayer Needs.

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Children and Youth Ministry

December 31, 2011

As I checked our draft box, I realized that I had not published some of the posts.  I know it is late but I wanted to publish before 2012 comes!  Here are some updates on our ministry in the fall.










We took our youth group to go bowling.  Many of you have been praying for these two sisters on the right.  They lost their grandparents in the tsunami and have been having a difficult time.  It was great to see their smile again.










We took them to Michael’s favorite restaurant.  Even though our group is still small, we always have so much fun together!










When we had a team from Bangkok, we hosted a youth game night.  As you can see, they loved it!!!










We also wrote encouraging notes on the heating cans for people in the temporary housing.  The Bangkok team delivered them and many people loved it!










This fall, we started teaching English at our church.  We have been having 20-30 kids every week!










We always end our time with a short worship service.  Lots of the kids are from non-Christian families.   Some of them started coming to the Sunday School.










Mr. Tony taught some English praise songs!  It reminded me of my childhood since he had taught me the same songs when I was a child!










The youth learned English through games, songs, and chants! It was great to see them interact with these English speakers!










We hosted the first ever fall festival at our church.  Both teams from Bangkok and Hawaii helped and our FBCA family helped by sending us American candies and party supplies!  Thank you all!










In the beginning, all the kids who had come to the English class performed in front of their parents.










This class learned the colors and animals.  They did a great job!










Bean bag toss!












Pumpkin bowling!












Ring toss!










Fishing game!












Face painting!













Everyone enjoyed American taste such as hot dogs, chili, spam musubi (from Hawaii), popcorn, cookies, candies, and cool aids! One girl said who had a cool-aid for the first time said it tasted like “America”!!!










It was great to meet dads of the kids who come to our English class.  Michael hopes to get to know them better!










Michael and the boys.  We ordered these pumpkins from the northern island of Japan.  The kids loved touching them!

We had a great time with everyone.  God has opened so many doors for us to meet and minister to the youth and kids in our community.  We look forward to building relationships and sharing God’s love with them and their families.


Categories: Hope for Japan News.

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It has been 6 months…

September 24, 2011

September 11th was a special day for us in many ways.  We remembered those who died in New York on September 11th, 2001.  It was also a day to remember those who died in the earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011.  It has been six months since that day and many people are still hurting and grieving.  In fact, some of our church members lost their relatives and the girls in our youth group are having a difficult time accepting their grandparents’ passing.

Many people in the tsunami-hit areas have moved to the temporary housing, but it’s hard to get used to this new living environment, especially for older people.  They don’t get food and supplies from the government anymore.  Many of them live alone.  They are too old to drive or their cars were washed away by the tsunami.  They have to go to the stores, doctor’s office, bank, and all the other places by themselves.  THEY NEED HELP!!!

That’s why we keep visiting them.  Many of them are lonely and hopeless.  We want them to know that we love them and care for them.  Even though we may not be able to do much, we know our GOD can save and heal them.

Here are some photos from our visit in August.










It was the last time we visited this temporary shelter (middle school).  These ladies have moved to the temporary housing and live alone now.










Luke loved playing with them.  The lady on the right lost her husband in the tsunami and misses him a lot.










We helped with the yard work and gave those ladies some time to rest.  There was a lot to do!










Poster from the kids in the US.










We delivered some children’s clothes that were donated by our FBCA family.  Please pray for Miyuki.  She has many questions about God.










We visit this family every time we go to Oshika Peninsula.  Their relative (this old lady’s nephew) is a strong Christian and we want them to come to know the Lord.












We love Shuri (girl) and Raiki (boy).  Their grandfather is a leader in the community.  Shuri shared that most of her friends had moved to other cities after the tsunami.  We  try to give them a gift every time we go there and we love seeing their cute smile!

Please continue to pray that the seeds that have been planted will grow someday. We know God has a special plan for each of them!

We will post another update next week!  Have a blessed weekend!

Categories: Aid for Japan.

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It’s a Dirty Job

July 16, 2011

It’s a dirty job but somebody has to do it.  That was exactly the approach that had been taken when cleaning up after the tsunami.  Many of the standing houses will be torn down due to structural damage.  However, there are some that can be saved.  Before anyone ever thinks of living in one of these homes, a lot of changes have to occur.  First the rubble has to be removed.  Then the houses are stripped down to the wood and/or metal frame.  And after power washing and bleaching, the rebuilding begins.



















This picture shows Michael at one of the houses being reconstructed by Samaritan’s Purse.  It is one of 500 homes scheduled to be rebuilt.  It’s a pain staking job.  It’s a really dirty job.  But through everyone’s generous efforts and donations, someone will have their house restored.  After the walls, ceiling, and floors are gutted, the task of removing all the mud begins which is concentrated under the floor boards on the concrete slab.  It’s hard to say what all is in the mud except that it has fuels and fish.










That’s the dirty part.  The great news about all this is that through the efforts of Samaritan’s Purse, many Japanese families are helped and at no cost to the owner.  It’s hard to imagine having a 30 year mortgage on a tsunami hit house that was not covered by insurance.  We are praying that many will come to know Jesus in a truly meaningful way through this.  But, as people continue to volunteer with the help more and more people have a chance to see the goodness of God.










Another team arrived today.  We can only expect good things in the days ahead.  We look forward to possibly seeing some of our readers here to help.  Wouldn’t that be something?  Cleaning houses and praising God.  Sounds like a winner.

Categories: Aid for Japan.

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Please pray for these precious kids…

June 30, 2011


I want to ask you all to pray for these precious kids who have been affected by the earthquake, tsunami, and radiation treat in Japan.  As a mother, my heart hurts so much to know what they are going through.  Even though they are having such a difficult time, they always smile when I take pictures of them.  Their beautiful smiles make me happy but at the same time, I know each of them has so many unspoken feelings/concerns.  Please pray the day will come soon when they can all laugh, smile, and have tons of fun without being worried about the aftershocks, nightmare of the tsunami, radiation, destroyed homes, and all the other traumas that they may have.









All the pastors’ kids got together for the special meeting.  Playing cards while the adults had a meeting.










Some of these kids are from Fukushima where the nuclear plant exploded.  They hadn’t been able to play outside because of the radiation threat.  They were so happy to come to Sendai where they could play outside.  They were so thankful to receive rain jackets that your generous donation helped us buy.  THANK YOU!!!










Guess what they are making?  Their OWN movie theater!  These kids live in a tsunami-hit town and almost everything was destroyed.  They decided to “make” a movie theater so that they could watch movies (DVDs) together.  What a brilliant idea!


























Aren’t they precious?  We were able to give them lots of cookies for their opening day.  Hope they enjoyed them!   As these kids painted the cardboard boxes, one of the moms told her daughter to be careful since she was wearing one of a few shirts she had left.  It broke my heart.  Since many of these kids lost everything, we are going to deliver clothes that have been donated by our FBCA family (our sending church).  If you want to know how to donate, please e-mail us (michaelandyu@gmail.com).  Thanks!










We hosted a special event for kids at our church.  A volunteer team from Colorado joined us and we all had such a great time!










Singing praise songs!  Our friend, Yuta, did a great job! Michael did a wonderful job sharing a children’s message.










They all got a gift that was bought with the Aid for Japan donation money.  As you can imagine, they were SO excited!










Playing games!










Having lots of fun together.










Dinner time!










What an awesome fellowship we had!  In this picture, there is a girl who lost her grandparents in the tsunami.  They have yet to found her grandmother’s body.  Please pray for her and her family.  Also, some of these kids’ (they are siblings) dad works for the Japanese army and he has been super busy since March 11th.  They don’t have much time to see their dad.  Pray for them as they miss their daddy!

Thank you for keeping these children in your prayers.  We know your prayers will make a difference!

Categories: Prayer Needs.

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Update on May 6th

May 7, 2011

Thank you so much for your continued prayers for Japanese people.  After we shared our last update, we heard from some of our friends who read this blog and were encouraged to know that our blog updates help them to know how to pray for Japan.  Sorry we can’t update as much as we want to (we have been busy sharing our stories at different churches and companies.  Praise God for these opportunities!), but we hope our blog will help you understand how great our God is and how much Japanese people need Him!


-We are still talking with the leaders of our sending church and organization to decide when to go back to Japan.  They have spent lots of time researching the situations in Japan and they approved us to go back!  This is an answer to our prayers!  Please continue to pray for God’s guidance and wisdom as we decide when and where to return.

-Our missionary friends and one of our friends from DBU (he came all the way from Osaka!) went to Oshika Peninsula to visit temporary shelters.  They delivered food and clothes, and people were so thankful.   They also handed out the Bible tracts.  Please pray they will take time to read them and feel God’s love for them.










(Our friend, Yuta, sorting items to be delivered.)

-We were encouraged to read an article about our Christian friend, Mr. Yamaki (http://www.baptistpress.org/BPnews.asp?ID=35105).  We are thankful for believers like him who are working hard every day to share hope with the hopeless.  Yu’s dad told him that so many people from all over the world are praying for him, and he was so grateful.  Please keep remembering him and his team in your prayers.

-Our church members, Mrs. Kimura (her husband is in Japanese army) and Mrs. Yonezawa (her in-laws died in tsunami), are doing better.  They told Yu’s dad that coming to church on Sundays gives them peace and strength.  Praise God for His comfort.










(The lady on the left is Mrs. Kimura and the one on the right is Mrs. Yonezawa.)

-Thanks to your prayers and donations, we were able to get MORE rain jackets for kids in Japan.  Our friend, April (she graciously offered to let us stay with her), gave us 50 of them as well!  Yu’s dad is taking them to Japan and giving them to kids in Sendai and Fukushima.   Thank you for helping them to feel safe and protected.













-Yu’s dad visited us for a week.  We had a great time together and Luke was happy to see his grandpa!  Since he has been helping with disaster relief effort ever since the earthquake hit Sendai, he was asked to share his experiences at the Christian radio station in Seoul and the church in Suwon.  God truly blessed his time in South Korea.










(Photo with Dr. Billy Kim, who is a wonderful pastor and founder of Far East Broadcasting Company.)












(Proud grandpa!)


-Some people are staying in a crematorium shelter, but they have been told that they would have to leave by the end of this month.  Please pray that they can find a place to live.










(This picture was taken by our missionary friend.  They visited this place and gave them food and clothes.  They also spent time with them as these people shared their stories.)

-Sendai city government is trying to build many temporary houses for those who lost homes.  Please pray for a speedy process.










(Temporary housing in Sendai where we will be visiting when we go back.)

Thanks again for keeping up with us!  Please write us at michaelandyu@gmail.com and let us know how you are doing and how we can be praying for you all! We also love hearing from those we have never met.  We are looking forward to getting to know you!  Thank you for keeping us in your prayers.





Categories: Aid for Japan.

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Update on April 11th

April 11, 2011

It has been a month since the massive earthquake and tsunami hit Japan.  Since that day, so many lives have been taken and changed forever.  For the past month, we have heard and read so much about the damages and losses from the earthquake, tsunami, and radiation.  We may never understand why things like this happened, but we can rest in God who is in control.  We just had prayer as a family and asked our Father to give everyone in Japan peace and hope.


-Thank you for praying for the Kimura family.  Yu talked to Mrs. Kimura today. Thankfully, school and kindergarten started again today.  The kids go there only in the morning.  Mrs. Kimura prays getting back to their daily routine will help them release some stress and they will be able to have fun with their friends without being worried all the time.  The kids’ rashes are better.  Please continue to pray for physical and emotional healing.

-We received an e-mail from Mr. Yamaki (chief of a coastal fire department).  His team is working so hard and everyone is encouraging each other.  He said they are finding many bodies under collapsed buildings.  It is sad that many people have died, but ever since the tsunami hit this area, people have been praying to see their loved ones’ bodies once again even though they are no longer alive.  This is a very important mission for his team, and he knows he can rely on God who gives them strength.   Praise God for such a godly leader.

-Yu’s dad and the disaster relief team from the local churches have visited Ishinomaki again.  Praise God for the relationships that have been built.  Tokyo Baptist Church (one of the big churches in Japan) has also sent a team there to cook for people who lost homes.  So many people have been blessed by the supplies and food that have been given to them.  It has been encouraging to see so many Japanese people hearing about Jesus for the first time.  Keep praying for their salvation.








(Before the tsunami- this picture was taken at the park by Yu’s grandparents’ house)








(After the tsunami- the white building in the middle of this photo was the city hospital.  Water came to the second floor.)

-All the pastors and leaders from the local Baptist churches met with the team from Japan Baptist Convention (JBC).  JBC is planning to send personnel who can move to Sendai to lead the disaster relief effort.  It is an answer to our prayers.  We will partner with JBC and the local churches to meet the needs of those who are waiting for help (JBC’s disaster relief information- http://baptist2.exblog.jp/).


-We received an official request from Miyagi Gakuin.  Please read this letter (http://www.mgu.ac.jp/01news/2010/2011-0318-1220-39.html).   As we receive more donations, a part of the money will be donated to help these students.  We appreciate your continued financial support.





(Chapel at Miyagi Gakuin- this school really blessed Yu while she was in high school.)

-Mrs. Yonezawa’s (our church member) father-in-law was found dead.  They have not found her mother-in-law.  Please pray for their family as they grieve.  Mrs. Yonezawa and her three children are members of our church, and they have been praying for Mr. Yonezawa’s salvation for a very long time.  Please pray he will find God’s peace during this difficult time.








(The lady in the middle is Mrs. Yonezawa)

-We are working with our churches in Sendai and Arlington to have a clothes drive to help the children who lost everything.  We think it will be a great opportunities for both churches to work together to share His love.  Please pray for guidance and wisdom as we lead this special project.

-Please pray for us as we prepare to speak at a local church on Sunday.  We have spoken at 3 different places already and we are grateful that God continues to use us here in South Korea.  We have been touched by the hearts and prayers of Korean people.  We will write about how God has used us and blessed us.

As we close this post, we want to ask you to take a few minutes to pray for Japan and the people of Japan.  Today, many Japanese Christians are getting together to pray.  As I type, they are having a special prayer meeting at Sendai Baptist Church.  This month has passed so quickly, but we know it can take years for many people to have their normal life back.  Please pray God will draw them closer to Him and they will find hope and peace.

“The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace.” Psalm 29:11

Categories: Prayer Needs.

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