The 10th memorial service in remembrance of the 3.11 disaster was held from 7pm (local Japan time) on 11thMarch 2021.
The service was held on-line. By doing so, it became possible for participants from outside of Iwate to join us. More than 250 participants from ten different countries/locations including Japan (Singapore, Germany, Hong Kong, USA, England, Fiji, South Korea, Taiwan and Israel) were able to join us. Some of the participants had to deal with the time zones, waking up very early in the morning or staying up deep into the night. We were able to rejoice in our reunion, but it was also a time to reflect upon the pain of the disaster and our Lord’s hand at work, and to also consider where we are being led to from here.
We started the program with an opening video reflecting upon the past ten years, followed by testimonies from the early members of our work: Ps Mitsuhashi from Hocmin, Konishi san from United Project, one of our earliest staff Nagata Michio san who now resides in Israel, Matsui Hiroko san, and Ps Ghent Micah who is now a pastor serving in Aomori. This was followed by guest appearances from overseas, with messages from Eld Susan Eng of EPJM in Singapore and Catherine Porter who is now on home leave back in the UK, followed by presentations on her harp. The pastors and missionaries serving in various locations along the coast of Iwate came to share about their ministry and their prayer points.
A clear theme emerged from the sharings from those who served earlier, and from those who continue to serve now, and that is the church. It is indeed God’s great blessing that the pastors, the brothers and the sisters continued to pray and continued to stand together through the bond of the church, both in Japan and beyond its borders. Ten years is not a milestone, but a passing point in time. Ten years does not mark an end, nor does it mean we will be going back to where we before. We will go forth from here, in the union that we have in our Lord, bearing the burden that our Lord has given us to continue to serve here in this place and to continue to share the gospel. Please continue to remember us in your prayers and be ever-present with us.
You may view the opening video by clicking here https://youtu.be/P35_U_eQO0g.