JAPAN STM Update #4

It’s been an awesome, fun, ministry-filled (and food-filled) trip! Our last several days included participating in our final Sunday service at Hatta-Nishi Christ Church as well as some sight-seeing and shopping on Saturday and Monday.

We had a great time of worship and fellowship with the HCC members on Sunday. First, our team helped out again with some singing during their Sunday Children’s service. 
After saying goodbye to the HCC kids, we headed upstairs to the sanctuary for the main service. Before the sermon, our team members performed 2 songs for special music: “You Are Holy” (in English) and “Shout To The Lord” (in both Japanese and English). It was a very special time worshipping together in different languages. 
Wayne then performed a piano solo arrangement of “I’d Rather Have Jesus.” 
Wayne had the privilege to deliver the sermon as well and preached a message titled “To Follow Jesus: Faithfulness In Life & Ministry” based on Acts 16:6-10. 
Sunday ended with a potluck dinner at the church. The Doi Family even brought out their chocolate fondue fountain, which the kids (and adults) of course loved! Caleb and Jocie dressed up in Japanese outfits that were given to them as gifts.
Our team had some time during the weekend to go sightseeing and shopping as well. Saturday began with lunch at Kua Aina. 
We spent Saturday afternoon walking the streets in Namba as well as checking out the subway system. We got to visit areas like Dotonburi, Shinsaibashi, and Namba Parks. 
Dinner was at an amazing katsu place.
On Monday we visited Nara Park. But before our long day of walking, we had to make sure we were physically nourished with kaiten sushi. 
Out of our 3 tables, this table ate the most!
Nara Park was definitely quite a sight with deer roaming freely on the streets. 
We also visited Todaiji Temple, a sobering reminder of the religious culture of many Japanese. 
We enjoyed some shaved ice before making our trek back down from the hill.
We had some time to shop at a nearby Uniqlo, and then closed off our trip Monday night with dinner at Ray and Shelley’s apartment. 
Tuesday morning we headed to the airport for our final goodbyes. 
Our team is thankful to have had the opportunity to continue the ministry efforts between IBC and HCC. We hope and pray for many more years of Christ-honoring work together. 
We will greatly miss the times of fellowship with the HCC members and even more with Ray and Shelley… Until next year!