It’s been a long long time since any updates have been made on this blog. But this definitely does not mean nothing was going on during this time!
The rebuilding process in the disaster zone is still on going and new challenges and opportunities continue to arise along the way. At the end of September a big typhoon blew over most of Japan and caused more water damage to houses in the disaster zone. With the ground level having sunk a few inches, flooding occurred in many places. Some people we had helped clean out their homes and replace flooring had to repeat the same process after water emerged into their first floor! But the strong will and determination of the locals to push on and work towards revival is all the more present.
In the areas our church has worked in around Ishinomaki, most families have either cleaned out their house and moved back in, are still waiting for a carpenter to come fix up their house or have moved into temporary housing due to their house being completely destroyed. People are now faced with the challenge being left without a community. It is our vision to help foster communities which existed before the tsunami as well as work with new born communities. We have found that there are about 8 other churches which ended up doing ministry in the same small neighborhood of Watanoha in Ishinomaki. Events are being held each week in the same neighborhood to give friends and families the opportunity to congregate and spend time with eachother. These people have been separated due to their house having either been damaged or completely destroyed. Thus their is movement from churches in helping repair houses to bring people back into their own community.
Within the past couple of months our base has been used by various church organizations to hold events which have brought together a large amount of people from the Watanoha community. The opportunity to hang out and fellowship with friends and family has appeared to be a huge blessing as many locals have begun to express their gratitude concerning this. Praise the lord as one man who is a ward chief in the area became a christian last month at a thanksgiving event held at our place!
Our base has also been used to house volunteers of various organizations coming up to help repair houses, distribute goods, cook food for people in temporary housing etc. Our warehouse has also been a huge blessing as it has room to hold lots of equipment. In the months leading up to winter many people have used our warehouse to store goods for the winter which were in turn distributed to people in the Watanoha community. The Kamizoku base has been a huge blessing!
Please pray for us as we continue to ask God for guidance in our ministry to the communities in Watanoha and other areas of Ishinomaki. Please specifically pray for us as we are deciding how we might better use the Kamizoku base in helping Watanoha develop as a community both physically and emotionally.
I will try to post updates more periodically from now on!