Michigan Japanese Ministry Report

Megumi Kurata(JCFN Midwest Associate Staff)


Hallelujah! Praise be to the name of the Lord!! My name is Megumi Kurata, and I have a blessing and privilege of serving as JCFN Midwest associate staff. We are experiencing some cold weathers still, but I hope this message finds you well. Today, I’m thankful for the opportunity to share with you about what God is doing in Michigan.


What comes to mind when you hear the word “Michigan”? Snow? Cold weather? Yes, we have those in plenty, but also the auto industry of course is a quintessentially Michigan entity. In recent years many Japanese people started moving to the area in connection with auto related jobs. Michigan is one of the fastest growing area as far as Japanese population is concerned.


There are various Japanese ministries throughout the state of Michigan. In this report I would like to share mainly about the Southeast Michigan/Greater Detroit Area, where the Japanese population density is the highest.


We cannot talk about Japanese ministry in this area without mentioning the support of brothers and sisters from the local communities. Every week, several hundreds of Japanese people (mostly expat families) are touched through various programs such as ESL, Bible studies, and other classes that are offered by several local churches.


Below is the collage from RJC multi-site conference in Michigan on October 20th, 2018. Many people came together from various local churches and ministries and had a blessed time of networking and encouragement. I’m deeply touched when I see many Americans and non-Japanese foreigners praying earnestly for salvation of Japanese souls, and continuing their labor of love. It is like seeing the reflection of mercy and grace God has towards Japan.


Also this time, Rev. Takashi Imori (Toyota Minori Christ Church) and Rev. Tsugeru Irie (Toyota Kamiike Christ Church) visited from Toyota City and participated RJC conference. We had the opportunity to fellowship with them and hear about churches in Toyota City.

Many families that have moved to this area because of the auto related jobs came from Aichi and the surrounding area, and are going back there eventually. I believe it is God’s provisional work of bridge building to foster cooperative relationships between Michigan and Toyota City.


Next picture is from Sunday Worship Cafe and Indoor Outing (Mochi edition!) Both of these are non-denominational lay-Christians initiated events that operate beyond the bounds individual churches. Along with Bible studies held in various homes, these events provide a place of encouragement and growth for Christians and an easy entry points for non-Christians.  

So there you have it. It’s cold in Michigan but God’s work here is hot! Please remember us in your prayer.


For many Japanese people to meet God in this place and be transformed as Christ followers.

For more workers to tend to the bountiful harvest God is preparing.

For unity and growth among Christians, so that we can respond to God’s call to be a part of His awesome work.

May the blessing of loving God abound over you, wherever you are.


“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” Isaia 52:7

RJC Goes to The Couch! (3)

Part 1

Part 2

Don Wright (RJC Founder, Editor of Operation Japan Prayer,  Former Missionary to Japan)


Here is what our director, Dennis Peters shared in our RJC email report:

What a fabulous October we have enjoyed.

The Multisite Conference, while not without its hiccups, was such a huge blessing. October 19 in Seattle (October 20 in Japan) we had a special service with our main Speaker, Pastor Yonai (who actually flew to Seattle from Tokyo), with the Japan sites, Osaka and Tokyo.


Then, on Saturday, October 20 in the USA Washington D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Chicago, Nashville, Dallas, San Antonio, Los Angeles, Portland and Seattle held conferences where people from all over the USA and Canada gathered together, not just to hear Yonai Sensei, but to share, learn and worship together.


We have heard so much about the networking opportunities and the excitement from each location. On top of that, we had a “Joint Sharing Time,” where all 10 sites were able to share a little about what is going on at their location. It was POWERFUL! 600 people from all over the USA and Japan gathered in 12 different locations sharing their passion for reaching Japanese for Christ! WOW! WOW! WOW!


Here are some of my personal reflections coming out of the multi-site event.

  1. Japanese students and families in the business world are all over the US and Canada. The more concentrated areas are more easily identified. But the multi-site and mini-conference format allows us to help connect people and ministries more broadly. And the concept can easily help in other countries of the world.
  2. RJC can be of help in Japan. Up to this point we have focused on the US and Canada, but RJC conferences can provide the opportunity for Christian leaders to connect and learn concerning returnee ministries from one another primarily in English.
  3. A direct internet connection is essential. On Friday evening the broadcast from Seattle to Japan was through a wi-fi connection which was not good. (Even then, in spite of the technical difficulties, the event allowed healthy networking.)
  4. It is important to work harder to gain cooperation with the leaders of Japanese churches in the various locations. They are so important to the effectiveness of RJC and JCFN.

The Kingdom of God, centered around the common vision of reaching Japanese in the US and Canada, and changing Japan and then the world needs RJC and JCFN. The multi-site conference can be an important tool. There is too much to do. We can’t sit on the couch, and we can’t do it alone!


RJC Goes to The Couch! (2)

Part 1

Don Wright (RJC Founder, Editor of Operation Japan Prayer,  Former Missionary to Japan)

The growth of RJC, especially with the international conference and multiple regional meetings has pushed us to try something new, a multi-site one-day internet conference, a conference which would connect our various ministry locations, making broad connections, while being very local. It sounded like a simple easy idea, but it turned out to be much more complex with a large unexpected learning curve. And it helped us pray more than usual! It is hard to move a couch that stretches across the continent and even to Japan.


October 20th was the date. The theme: “Working Together to Reach Japanese.” The main speaker: Pastor Hiroaki Yonai, who is also the JCFN Chairman. The main conference hub was Northshore Community Church in Kirkland, Washington. This is the church where RJC actually was birthed. Please  check out the recordings at https://rjcnetwork.org/conferences/2018-rjc-multi-site-conference/.


In order to qualify to be a multi-site location we asked the following:

  1. The possibility of interested people attending.
  2. A planning committee.
  3. A meeting place that will have the ability to project the internet meeting.
  4. The willingness to host the conference with lunch and additional programs, like seminars and panel discussions.
  5. Willingness to help cover the general expenses of the conference.

We were thankful for the 10 sites in the USA, and two in Japan. We had previously avoided having conferences in Japan, but the multi-site format made it possible to have one in Osaka and in Tokyo.

Besides the 12 sites we also promoted what we called “Mini-Conferences.” These were locations that had interested people, but not enough to meet the above five tasks. We asked the following:

  1. At least one person who would organize the event.
  2. The meeting place could even be the home of the leader.
  3. Internet connection. Probably most of the program would come from the main hub. And the mini-conference might even meet at a different time, using the conference recordings.

We know of at least three locations that did the mini-conference. The most organized location was Houston, where they were able to function like a multi-site event. Also, there were gatherings in Allentown, PA and in Indiana.

to be continued to Part 3

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