Friday, March 5, 2010

Back to school

Since we came back to Japan last April, we have had the privilege of being able to attend lectures and audit classes at the Bible College in Sapporo. Today was the last of ten classes given by our co-worker Kaori Chua on the subject of pastoral care. We learned so much that will be invaluable for us as we get alongside people here - and we wish we had learned some of those lessons years ago! The Bible College does not have many students but there is a very warm atmosphere and we have enjoyed getting to know the students and admire their dedication to giving up three years to be equipped to minister as pastors, missionaries or evangelists in Japan or overseas. Three of the students will graduate next Saturday and move on to become pastors in local churches. Other students come in to study just for one year. Still others, some who are church members, some who are pastors, attend like ourselves to audit a class. Kaori's husband How Chuang is a lecturer at the College and we have benefited greatly from his wisdom and insight as we start off this new church plant in Hiragishi. Missionaries like to be active and be out there among people. But it is always good too to take time to reflect and think about how the great truths of Scripture can be expressed appropriately in the complex culture that is Japan. So today we give thanks for the Hokkaido Bible Institute and those who serve there so that others can be better equipped to share the gospel with Japanese people.

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