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The Gospel that brings change


Sunset at Bampaku Kinen Koen. One of the prettiest times of the year!

The blossoming of the the beautiful sakura (Japanese cherry blossoms) marks the end of winter and everything looks like it's coming back to life. This season is a great reminder that life is also made up of seasons, and GC is in a new one!


Church planting is both exciting and challenging, and 2019 is a year of change and challenges and we are really excited about it!


For those of you who know anything about the spiritual situation in Japan, you would know the national average of baptisms per yer per church is LESS THAN ONE PERSON; that means many churches actually have zero baptisms. But just 5 months after our grand opening we had our first baptism! HALLELUJAH!

Marie's Baptism

On April 14, Marie publicly declared her new found faith in Jesus. She has lived a life that most people would never even want to experience, but when she got gripped by the Gospel of Jesus her heart and mind changed, and now she has given her life to her loving savior Jesus Christ! We are so excited to see her grow as a disciple of Christ, and to see even more people falling in love with JESUS!


Click HERE to watch Marie's testimony and baptism.










On April 21, we celebrated our first Easter as the Gospel Center family! We had a special Sunday Worship at our new venue and then had an Easter family outreach event at the park down the street. Many families have already been to at least one of our events before, but maybe heard about the resurrection of Jesus for the first time in their lives, and some have expressed interest in bringing their children to our kids ministry (which also means that the parents will join our worship services too!).

To watch our Easter Worship Service livestream click HERE.



How can you pray for us?

1. SHINE!

Please pray for my wife, Tomoko, as she heads up our kids ministry called "SHINE!" Mustard Seed Christian Church from Nagoya has blessed us with their bilingual Gospel-centered kids curriculum and our kids love it! Please pray that many from this young generation will be passionate and faithful followers of Jesus!


2. University outreach

Chris is heading up our university outreach at Kansai University (Kandai). He goes there 3 times a week to meet students, do English conversation groups, and fun events all with the goal of building relationships that will provide good soil for the Gospel seeds to be planted. YWAM Takatsuki staff, Matt Chen also helps out and brings teams too. I try to go at least once a week as time permits.


3. English Outreach

I teach a "Family English Time" class every Wednesday morning on the second floor of a chiropractors office, and also about 30-40 students who are mostly senior citizens on the third Saturday of every month at the local community center. These opportunities help me to connect with the locals, invite them to church and GC events, as well as raise some supplement income for my family.


4. Japanese lessons

Yes, I am attempting to improve my Japanese skills! I have a one-on-one tutor at the local community center. My goal is to preach my first sermon (even if it's short) in Japanese within 3 years. I hope I'll be able to do it!


5. Preaching Cohort

Last year I was able to attend a life-changing church planters course by City to City Asia Pacific in Taipei, Taiwan. This year, I will be attending as part of the "Preaching Cohort". CTC supports me with an amazing preaching coach, Dr. Stephen Um. We have one-on-one coaching sessions every month via video chat but from May 6-10 I will be able to participate in the intensive training with other church planters and pastors! Please pray that we all become better at the craft of preaching the Biblical text and keeping everything centered on Jesus! Please also pray for my wife who will be holding down the fort while I'm gone. She is just amazing!


There are obviously many more things to give God praise about and to ask for prayer for, but I/we will be more than appreciative of any and all the prayers lifted up to our God on behalf of The Gospel Center.


Aloha and God bless,

Justin



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