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VVV OSAKA DIRECT VVV June 27th, 2006
Greetings in the Name of Jesus!
Hello dear friends! I pray that the Lord is blessing you, and that all is well in your life; may the love of Jesus overflow in your heart! Here in Osaka, Karen and I are doing fine. We continue serve in Osaka International Church (OIC) and in the Grapevine Cell Church (GCC) as He leads. As you might have guessed from our long silence (sorry!), we are busy as always. The Lord continues to work in us and through us, and we praise Him for His work in His church! In this issue of Osaka Direct, there is much to give thanks for, and some serious prayer issues as well. In this issue, the news is mostly about special events, but all of our regular meetings and activities are also continuing. Please enjoy Osaka Direct. May the Lord Jesus bless you with His peace and grace today and everyday!
News and Photos
In February we celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary with a trip to Israel. We flew to Tel Aviv via Amsterdam and joined a tour group from Calvary Chapel of Spokane, Washington. It was a wonderful trip, very fun and educational. Not only did we see many of the places where Bible events occurred, but we also enjoyed inspiring messages from Pastor Ken and informative talks from our Israeli tour guide. Karen has posted lots of photos and more information on our web site, so please take a look and enjoy: Israel Photos and News
OIC Spring Leadership Retreat!
In May we held a three day retreat which focused on leadership development. We ate, talked, and prayed our way through leadership materials from the Bible, Natural Church Development and from Henri Nouwen's book, "In the Name of Jesus." This was a terrific time of growth for people as many of the participants were challenged for the first time to think about church from a leadership perspective. I feel certain that these kinds of training events will bear a lot of fruit over time as young people catch the vision to be Bible study leaders, small group facilitators, church planters, missionaries, and pastors.
MUP Japan, Kansai Area Fun Day
It has been a blessing to see the Lord answering prayers for more missionary workers for the Japan field over the years. When we came in 1996, Mission to Unreached Peoples (MUP) had only three long-term workers in Japan. Now there are 25 adult missionaries, plus many children, and also lots of partners of one kind or another. I remember that two years ago I was pleasantly shocked to discover that I had fifty names on the invitation list for our annual retreat. Now we have taken a new step by holding our first regional get-together for the greater Osaka area. There is every indication that MUP Japan will continue to grow in the future as the Lord continues to send people to work for the salvation of the Japanese. Praise the Lord!
Western Japan Prayer Summit
For the first time this year, the Western Japan Prayer Summit was conducted entirely in Japanese and had more Japanese pastors in attendance than western missionaries. Although Dan did not attend this year, Karen went and she reported that it was a great success. Karen's work at developing the Japanese language web site for this ministry is an important part of the effort to increase Japanese church leader participation. There is a great need for ministries like this that build unity among Japanese pastors, many of whom are isolated from pastors of denominations that are different than their own. Although the distinctives of various denominations are rightfully important to them, it is also very important for the church to demonstrate a real unity that extends to all of those who trust in Jesus Christ for their salvation.
Praise & Prayer Requests
(1) Praise the Lord for raising up new workers and new leaders for His church! Keep praying for many more!
Thank you for taking the time to read our news and pray for us. God bless you always!
In Jesus' love,