An Unexpected Interruption (Dec.2019 Prayer Letter)

Hi everyone,

As most of you already know, Yoko and I had an unexpected interruption to our Partnership Development travels, due to the sudden illness and passing of Yoko’s father. After 2+ weeks in Japan, we’re now safely back in Canada. We really appreciate all of the encouraging emails and messages many of you sent — too many to respond to! — and your prayers during this difficult time. Thank you! 

Please continue to pray for Yoko and her family as they deal with this loss, and for Yoko and I as we get back into the swing of things here in Canada.

This past weekend we visited Amherst, Nova Scotia for a missions weekend at the Wesleyan Church there. We have one more church visit scheduled this year, this coming Sunday at Port Maitland, NS. Please pray for this last ministry trip of the year and for our continuing Partnership Development efforts.

As you can imagine, this unexpected interruption has put us behind on some things. Not only do we need to reschedule some church visits, but our support fund is not where we’d hoped to would be by now. If you are thinking about making a Faith Promise, please go HERE for more information or directly HERE to sign up. 

Again, thank you all for your partnership in our mission in Japan through your prayers and giving! We are grateful to have you on our team!

– Robin (and Yoko)

November News (a slightly early prayer letter)

Hi everyone,

I hope you’re enjoying autumn so far! Yes, I know it’s not November yet, but we’ll be on the road this week and I wanted to get this written and out there ahead of time.

Autumn has become a busy season for Yoko and I. Yoko is enjoying her first Canadian Fall, and I’m enjoying introducing her to friends and partners here. We’ve both enjoyed connecting with our partner churches and sharing about the mission in Japan. Here are some highlights from October…

1. Visiting both of my home churches: Journey Wesleyan in Fredericton (where I grew up; see photo above) and Brown’s Flat Wesleyan Fellowship at Beulah Camp (which we currently call home). 

2. Thanksgiving with my family at Beulah Camp.

3. A weekend in Newfoundland, where we connected with Solid Rock Wesleyan, and got to engage with them by visiting their youth group on Friday night, speaking at a men’s breakfast (just me in that case) Saturday morning, taking part in an international dinner Saturday night (cooking, speaking and singing) and doing a full presentation in the morning service Sunday morning. We also enjoyed a few sights along they way…

Yoko and I would really appreciate your prayers this week and throughout November. Here are some specifics you can pray for:

1. Please pray for us as we travel to (and through) Ontario over the next 3+ weeks. Please pray for safe travel and strength for the many ministries and meetings we’ll be having.

2. Since she’s not employed by GP and we’re not here long-term, Yoko is currently in Canada as a visitor, which only allows her six months’ stay. Please pray for favour as we apply to extend Yoko’s visitor visa to Canada, so that she can continue to accompany me for the rest of this Partnership Development term. 

3. As I mentioned in last month’s newsletter, our church in Nagoya has just moved into their new building! They will be having their official building dedication this Saturday (11/2). Please continue to pray for Nagoya Immanuel Church.

4. As many of you probably saw on the news, Japan was hit by a major typhoon recently. Please pray for those affected and for the recovery efforts. Visit CRASH Japan’s website for more information on how the Christian community is responding and how you can help. 

5. Lastly, please pray about our financial partnership needs. We were hoping to be at 50% by the end of October, but, while we’re close, it hasn’t happened yet. Pray for new connections and partnerships. If you’re not a financial partner yourself, we’d certainly appreciate it if you’d consider becoming one. Please visit THIS LINK for more information.

Thank you for your partnership in prayer! 

– Robin (and Yoko)

Newsletter (Fall 2019)

Hi everyone,

Hope you’re doing well. Autumn has arrived, so it’s time for another of our quarterly newsletters. Please follow the link for news about our church in Japan, our travels in Canada, and our current partnership needs:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1i_g7mPX9_6vnlrOt9vFr-bg1yRdTRKNK

We’d really appreciate your prayers during this busy time of Partnership Development!

Thank you for being on our team!

– Robin (and Yoko)

Prayer Letter & Video Update

Hi everyone,

Thank you for praying for Yoko and I over the past month! We’ve been doing lots of traveling, sharing about our ministry in Japan with current and potential partners. God has really blessed us with encouraging conversations, divine appointments and new connections. It has been great to (re)connect with so many of you!

This month’s main update is in video form, so please check it out below! And feel free to share it at your church, especially if we haven’t gotten the chance to schedule a visit with you yet, or if you want to use it as a “preview” before we do. Here it is:

And just in case that doesn’t work for some of you, here’s a direct link to the video: https://vimeo.com/354906797

As most of you know, a big part of our reason for being in Canada right now is to raise funds for our next ministry term in Japan. Here’s an update on where we’re at:

Our current fundraising goal is $8,067 per month (USD) and as of today (2019/9/4) we are at about 43%. Would you consider partnering with us to help us get to 100? Please click HERE to make a Faith Promise. Or, for more info, click HERE.

We truly appreciate all of you who are already partnering with us though your giving. If you’re not already partnering with us in this way, we would really appreciate your consideration.

Meanwhile, we really need your prayers too! Here are some prayer and praise points for us and our partners in Japan:

  1. Please pray for God’s continuing protection and favour as we continue our Partnership Development travels.

  2. Please pray for our church in Japan, Nagoya Immanuel, as they finish their building project and move in in October.

     

  3. Pray for our fellow GP Japan missionary Andrea Swarthout as she returns to the US next week for tongue cancer surgery on September 12.

     

  4. Lastly, some good news! One of my former English students is being baptized on September 15! Praise God for her salvation, and please pray for her as she takes this next, public, step of faith.

Thank you again for your partnership in our ministry in Japan!

– Robin (and Yoko)

Website Update

Apologies if the website looks a little messy or bland for a few days. I’m in the middle of some updates and lost some design elements and functions along the way. Hopefully things will be back to normal — or better — soon.

The Father of Mountaineering in Japan (photo of the week and thoughts)

Rev. Walter Weston memorial plaque at Kamikochi in the Japanese Alps, June 2017

It’s interesting what some missionaries are remembered for.

Walter Weston was an Anglican missionary from England who helped popularize mountain climbing in Japan during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. His legacy is so strong in Kamikochi that there are memorials to him, like the one pictured here, and there is even a festival in his name as well. You can read up on him HERE and HERE, or even read/download his book (Mountaineering and the Japanese Alps) for free HERE.

I find it interesting and inspiring to see missionaries throughout history not only sharing the Gospel but also having a positive influence in other areas of society as a whole. I wonder if some in Weston’s time might have seen his mountaineering and “secular” writing as a distraction from his mission. But I think it’s good for missionaries to engage with the culture of the places they are called to, and that it ultimately opens up more doors to share Jesus with people.

I don’t know what my legacy will be, or if I’ll be remembered in Japan at all. But I pray I’ll be faithful in all areas of life and ministry, and that what I leave behind be positive and lasting.

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