Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Dear Praying Friends,
Though we are approximately 500 km (350 miles) from the Northeastern Region of Japan, hit hardest by the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami last Friday, with the death count rising daily, with the regular tremors and aftershocks continuing and with the unstable nuclear power plant situations still unfolding, the entire nation of Japan is a high state of anxiety, stress and fear. Even tonight at 9:30 PM, a magnitude 6 earthquake shook Shizuoka Prefecture, our neighboring prefecture, which was registered as a magnitude 3 here in Toyoake and shook our house considerably. Difficult, trying times for sure but our hearts remain strong knowing that God is our refuge and strength, knowing His ever-present help in these troubling times.
Just a few things to update you all on in terms of how we are responding to the many needs around us:
1. In the earthquake/tsunami relief effort, we are currently partnering with CRASH (Christian Relief, Assistance, Support and Hope) in getting food and provisions up to the Northeastern Region of Japan, hardest hit by the earthquake and tsunami. Pray for these efforts by CRASH to get the necessary provisions to the most needy and for opportunities to share Christ in doing so.
2. Also, in the earthquake/tsunami relief effort, with the thousands of people who have been left homeless in Northeast Japan, we are currently formulating a plan to open up TEAM’s R&R facility (in Karuizawa), which has 20 summer cabins to the two church associations we cooperate with to temporarily house those believers who have been displaced. As I will be heading up this effort with our mission chairman, please pray for wisdom in how to best proceed.
3. Lastly, in an effort to reach out to the people in our local community, Pastor Sugimoto and I spent sometime today coming up with a game plan to first, update our church website, inviting all who would need a place to talk, to come to church where they could be helped. Then, after things begin to settle down, to create a flyer for distribution, further encouraging people to come and hear God's message of salvation and hope at Toyoake Hope Chapel.
Please be in prayer for these efforts and that the many hurting people in this area might find their way to church.
Thank you for your continued prayers for us and the people of Japan.
In Christ and for His Glory,
Jim and Eileen Nielsen TEAM-Japan