21 May, 2017

56th birthday of our church

Today, 56 years ago, our Japanese church met for the first time with nine people. This morning one person who was there 56 years ago, the subsequent pastor of the church, addressed us briefly. I believe he was working at CAJ at the time the church began. Together with some students from the school, he started a small church in a home. As he said this morning, it's exciting to see where things have gone since then. Now the church has its own building, with plans to extend, and about 200 people attending each Sunday over three morning services.

In a land where there are less than 8,000 churches, less than 1% of the population are evangelical Christians, and the average size of a church is under 40 people, this church is larger than usual. Though our pastor is in the majority as being over 50 (70% of Japanese pastors are in this age category).*

This morning our pastor pulled out a ladder at the end of the service and hopped up on it to take a photo of the congregation.

We pray that many of the small churches that are being planted right now in Japan might be able to take such a photo 56 years from now, of the hundreds attending and praise God for what he's done in their midst in those years.

*The source of my statistics in this paragraph is from an infographic that I posted last year here.

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