How was your New Year’s? Ours started with worship at Morigo Chapel with a “countdown” service. Then, everything changed. Early that morning we discovered our co-worker, Vincent, unconscious in his apartment. We called for help and prayed for a miracle. Afterward, EMTs came and took him to the hospital, but he was pronounced dead. He had died of a cerebral hemorrhage (brain bleed) near the brain stem. Our celebration turned to mourning. He was only 42 years old.
During this loss and tragedy, God gave us hope. Through Vincent’s brief life and ministry in Rifu, God showed us how much the people loved him. He was in the early stages of learning Japanese. He loved to serve and make friends. Many came to his funeral and cremation service. Our many tears showed how Jesus used him to touch our hearts.
His family, Grace (Mom) and Vanessa (sister), came to take his ashes home to Hong Kong this past weekend. It was the first time for everyone to meet. They shared the love of their son with their Japan family. It truly is a blessing to be in the family of God. We have hope that we will see Vincent in heaven once again!
In God’s timing, we were allowed a time of recovery and retreat in Thailand. Our SE Asia and Japan colleagues were invited to a staff gathering in Chiang Mai, Thailand for five days. We enjoyed a beautiful resort sponsored by a Palmer Grant that our Area Director, Leslie Turley, applied for. About 60 of us, including some of our home office staff, enjoyed a time of rest and reflection. Moreover, we had a wonderful outing at a Night Safari, a delicious cultural dinner with, and entertained each other at a talent night during our stay. Thanks to everyone who participated and for our sponsors!
Please pray for us as we begin our first mid-term home assignment. This year, we will be in the US for six weeks. We visited Vancouver, WA with Randolph. We were invited to Vancouver Avenue FBC Portland to share at two Sunday services. Pastor Matt and the church were very welcoming.
Yesterday, we visited a supporter, Thresa, in Phoenix and shared our updates. This was our first time to visit Thresa in-person and it was a sweet time of fellowship and celebration.
Next, We will be in the LA/Orange County area for two weeks. Lastly, we’ll spend our last three weeks in the Seattle area. Please pray for our travels and safety! If you are interested in meeting with us, please contact us by email: Hwang@internationalministries.org
or our temporary mobile phone: 564-227-8685
With Much Love,
P.S. Would you consider a gift of serving on a Short-Term Mission Trip to Japan this Spring? Please click on the image below for more details.