Day 7- Fall Festival

November 26, 2012

Last year, we hosted the Fall Festival at our church for the first time.  The team from Thailand helped us and everyone had a great time.  Ever since then, the kids have asked if we would have another Fall Festival this year.  So we were thrilled when we found out that the FBCA team would be coming in October- perfect time to host the Fall Festival!

They brought SO many prizes (thanks to all the Sunday School classes and individuals who donated these items!) for the kids.  Also, Remey did a great job getting ready for all the fun games and activities.

We started the festival with a prayer and welcome speech by our pastor, and then our students sang English songs!

Russell and Remey did a great job leading the songs.

Then Michael shared a story about Jesus as Lance curved a pumpkin.  He talked about how Jesus removes the bad things from our heart when we ask Him to come into our heart and He puts a light in our heart.  And we shine that light so that others can know about Him.  We pray all the children will remember this story.

Kids were focused the entire time and looked so happy when they saw a light in the pumpkin!

We hope you can see all the excitement from the following photos!

Ring toss!

Face painting!



Bean bag toss!

Cindy with two girls!

Many parents came with their kids.

Photo booth!

Of course, Luke had a blast!!!

Thank you, FBCA team, for making this such an exciting event!  The kids in our English class are still talking about it!

If you are thinking about coming to Japan next year, October might be a good time to have LOTS of fun!


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Day 6- Visiting Oshika Peninsula

November 26, 2012

Ever since we visited Oshika Peninsula for the first time in May of 2011, it has become a special place.  It’s the area where so many people lost their lives, family members, houses, and everything they owned (You can watch the youtube video at  As we met people who were living in the temporary shelter at that time and built relationships over the past year and half, God placed these people in our heart and we have been visiting them regularly.

So we were so glad that we could take the FBCA team to this special place to meet the people we love.

At first, we visited our dear friend, Miyuki.  Her husband owns a fishing company and they lost most of their ships.  But they have continued their fishing business and trying to rebuild their home. She has been open to listen to the Gospel and she has put the poster with the scriptures that we had given her on their entrance wall.  She cried as we prayed with her and we pray God will continue to work in her heart.

With Miyuki.

Then we went to Oshika Preschool.  It was our first time to visit them in the new building.  Their school was destroyed by the tsunami so they were meeting in the community center for a year and half.  When we visited them, they were having a special festival.

It was great to see these happy kids!

We made the puppets with them!

After visiting the preschool, we went to our friend, Emi’s house.  She recently built a new house.  You may remember reading about her before, but she is the one who lost her husband and her father-in-law in the tsunami.  And this year, she has lost three of her family members including her father.  Needless to say, she has been going through a difficult time.  But she always welcomes us with a big smile and keeps thanking us for coming.  This time, she invited all of us to her new beautiful house and served delicious fruit and sweets.  It was great to hear about her plans to make her house a bed and breakfast place where people can come and stay.  We look forward to staying with her someday.  We prayed with her before we left and we could tell she was crying.  We know she is still hurting.  Please keep her and her little daughter in your prayers.

With Emi.

We stopped at Mrs. Hiratsuka’s (from the temporary housing we had visited the day before) brother’s temporary housing to deliver fruit and vegetables.  This time, we visited each door (20 units) and handed them in person.  People were so appreciative.  The FBCA team members mastered how to say “hello”, “here they are”, “thank you”, and “see you” in Japanese!

With Mrs. Hiratsuka’s brother.

On our way home, we went to Matsushima that is one of the most famous places in Japan.  The team got to see one of the national treasures.

Can’t you tell they were super excited?

It was a very memorable day.  We pray and hope we will be able to take more friends to Oshika Peninsula in the future!

Categories: Aid for Japan, Hope for Japan News.

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Day 2- Distributing Flyers and Driving to Sakata

November 10, 2012

On the second day, we had an orientation in the morning.  We could tell that the team had done a great job learning about Japan and preparing for the trip.  Michael shared a little more about Japanese culture, history, and what we have been doing.  We also had a prayer time together.  After that, we went to the new housing community around our church and distributed the flyer that had information on church and the upcoming fall festival (and several families came to the festival thanks to those flyers).

You know who had fun while everyone worked hard?

In the afternoon, we drove 3 hours to the west coast of Japan.  Sakata city has our mission church and we have been visiting there regularly.  We are so glad that the team got to go there to meet all the wonderful people!


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Day 1- 20th Anniversary at Taitomi Church

November 10, 2012

The team’s first day happened to be the 20th anniversary celebration of Taitomi Baptist Church. It’s the church where we are serving now.  It was so special that the team was a part of this celebration. Cindy, our pastor’s wife from FBCA, shared a greeting during the worship service and many members told us how much it meant to them.

Cindy sharing greetings from FBCA.

After the worship service, we all enjoyed delicious potluck lunch!

In the afternoon, we took the team to downtown Sendai to have Japanese tea and to see the Dance Festival.

Being very “Japanese” and enjoying Japanese tea and sweets.

In the evening, they all helped with our English class/fellowship at Sendai Baptist Church.

Singing “Mighty to Save” with Japanese friends!

Overall, it was a great first day!

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November 10, 2012

It has been a while since we updated our blog.  So many exciting things have happened while we were gone from the blog world!  The highlight was hosting a mission team from our sending church, FBCA!  We got sick after they left (thankfully, we are all getting better!) and it took a while for us to organize 500+ photos!  Hope you enjoy reading about their time here and looking at the photos!  Thank you, FBCA, for sending such an awesome team!

Categories: Hope for Japan News.


Thank You FBCA Team

July 31, 2012

We have had a lot of teams come and go over the past year.  We are abundantly thankful for our home church in Texas sending such a wonderful group of ladies.  Not only did they minister to the kids but they ministered to us as well.  Luke often takes a moment to get to know people before warming up to them but he truly took the the team right away.  He was sad to see the team leave and so were we.

We are blessed to have served with Martha, Lindsey, and Kristen.  We pray you take what you learned and experience here and share it with others back home.  We will miss you but we pray we get to see you all very soon!  Thank you so much FBCA for sending them to us.

Categories: Aid for Japan, Hope for Japan News.

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Teaching in Sakata

July 31, 2012

The FBCA team did a lot to help with our ministry.  One place that we took them was Sakata.  Sakata is the port town we evacuated to after the March 11 earthquake.  There is a mission church that was started by the churches of Northern Japan.  The pastor, his wife, and their children have lived there for six long years.  I say long because they are ministering in a city that has a very strong Buddhist history.  Pastor Fujii and his family have been working hard to reach out the their community.

One of the ways they minister is through their kids program.  They open up the church in the afternoons for kids to do homework and learn English.  Many of the children that attend are from single parent homes.  The majority of them live with their mom and have little to no contact with their dad.  As you can imagine this is very hard on the children.

We have felt the need to help the Fujiis with their ministry especially because they are so isolated.  We love this sweet family so much!  The team from FBCA was a huge help.  We got to help with the English programs and spend a lot of time playing games with the children.  One of the highlights the team had was visiting the only Christian kindergarten in Sakata.  The principal and staff were so gracious and a pleasure to be around.

We continue to pray for the Fujiis and their ministry.  Thank you so much FBCA for sending a team to bless the children of Sakata.

On our way to Sakata, we stopped at one of the beaches on the west coast. The girls got to put their feet in the Sea of Japan!









The first class they taught.










Teaching at the Christian kindergarten.










The kids were so sweet. Please pray for this kindergarten! They need more students!










Celebrating Lindsey’s birthday!










The third class they taught.










We all helped the pastor with the church flyers.










Please pray for Pastor Fujii and his family.










On our way back to Sendai, we stopped at this place where some Japanese old movies had been made.












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July 30, 2012

July started a little different for the Towerys.  A great group of ladies from our sending church, First Baptist Church of Arlington, was sent to spend a week helping our ministry.  We were so enthusiastic to have these ladies come and spend time with us.

Martha, Lindsey, and Kristen were so full of energy.  They came ready to serve and had a can do attitude which was great because we kept them busy!  Teaching English is a great way to get to know people here in Japan.  Lots of people are eager to learn English.  And wouldn’t you know it?  All three of the team members are teachers.  Hurray!

Every Sunday night we teach English at Sendai Baptist Church.  They ladies did a great job teaching the adults how to order from an English menu.  Martha gave her testimony during the worship service and everyone loved talking with the three during the fellowship time.

We also got to share the ladies with our Wednesday night Kids English Class and Summer Party on Saturday.  The Saturday event was extra special because many of the parents attended.  It was a good chance for them to practice English and also hear a message from God’s Word.

Thank you so much to the three team members.  You have a huge heart for kids and the Lord!

English class at Sendai Baptist Church.










They used a menu from Jason’s Deli to teach how to order in English! Great idea!










Martha sharing her testimony.










Kids English class at our church.










All the kids enjoyed playing the game!










The kids learned to say “I am excited!”










The kids loved getting to know these sweet ladies!










They also helped with the youth English class. Thank you for making our class enjoyable!












Playing with water balloons!










Having so much fun!










Just like American children, Japanese children love watermelons!!!

Categories: Aid for Japan, Hope for Japan News.

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Children and Youth Ministry

December 31, 2011

As I checked our draft box, I realized that I had not published some of the posts.  I know it is late but I wanted to publish before 2012 comes!  Here are some updates on our ministry in the fall.










We took our youth group to go bowling.  Many of you have been praying for these two sisters on the right.  They lost their grandparents in the tsunami and have been having a difficult time.  It was great to see their smile again.










We took them to Michael’s favorite restaurant.  Even though our group is still small, we always have so much fun together!










When we had a team from Bangkok, we hosted a youth game night.  As you can see, they loved it!!!










We also wrote encouraging notes on the heating cans for people in the temporary housing.  The Bangkok team delivered them and many people loved it!










This fall, we started teaching English at our church.  We have been having 20-30 kids every week!










We always end our time with a short worship service.  Lots of the kids are from non-Christian families.   Some of them started coming to the Sunday School.










Mr. Tony taught some English praise songs!  It reminded me of my childhood since he had taught me the same songs when I was a child!










The youth learned English through games, songs, and chants! It was great to see them interact with these English speakers!










We hosted the first ever fall festival at our church.  Both teams from Bangkok and Hawaii helped and our FBCA family helped by sending us American candies and party supplies!  Thank you all!










In the beginning, all the kids who had come to the English class performed in front of their parents.










This class learned the colors and animals.  They did a great job!










Bean bag toss!












Pumpkin bowling!












Ring toss!










Fishing game!












Face painting!













Everyone enjoyed American taste such as hot dogs, chili, spam musubi (from Hawaii), popcorn, cookies, candies, and cool aids! One girl said who had a cool-aid for the first time said it tasted like “America”!!!










It was great to meet dads of the kids who come to our English class.  Michael hopes to get to know them better!










Michael and the boys.  We ordered these pumpkins from the northern island of Japan.  The kids loved touching them!

We had a great time with everyone.  God has opened so many doors for us to meet and minister to the youth and kids in our community.  We look forward to building relationships and sharing God’s love with them and their families.


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Blessings from God

April 11, 2011

Last week, we were blessed to have two special friends from Arlington, Texas!  Cindy serves as the director of our sending organization (GCPN) and she is also our pastor’s wife.   For about two years, we spent our Monday nights at her house to have a training session to learn about missions.  It was such a great learning experience for both of us, and we also made some close friends who all have hearts for the world.  After we found out about the radiation leak, Cindy and Dennis (our pastor) spent several nights without sleeping in order to come up with our evacuation plan.  We are so thankful for their leadership and wisdom.  Another friend, Cathie, has been such a blessing to Yu ever since she first met her.  When we were still in Arlington, she invited Yu to her house to have lunch or take her to nice restaurants, and it was always a special time for her.  She prayed for us as we went through difficult times and also encouraged us as we prepared to become parents.  She has an amazing husband, two sweet kids, and a precious mom from Japan.  Please pray for her mom as she is away from her family in Japan.

They came all the way to South Korea to encourage us and to take care of our baby!   As you can imagine, Luke LOVED spending time with Aunt Cindy and Aunt Cathie!  They blessed us and encouraged us so much.  We had an amazing week together and words can’t express how thankful we were to have them with us.

Here are some pictures!










They arrived in Seoul safely!  The girl on the far left is Yu’s high school friend who lives in Seoul.  She took care of us last week (another blessing from God).












Clothes, diapers, wipes, toys, food, towels… It was like having another baby shower!










So excited!










A huge “THANK YOU” to those who gave these gifts!










Happy to be together!












We took a cable car to go up the hill.












With the guard in front of Seoul Tower.










We got to see an awesome show (Koreans really value their traditions).










City of Seoul is huge!










We had to take this picture!










Our favorite tea room.  Luke was spoiled by these beautiful ladies!












We visited this place called “Secret Garden”.










Such a beautiful palace where Korean kings and queens used to live.










Love this photo!










With the pastor, deacon, and translator at Eunpyeong First Church.   They were so kind to us.










At Far East Broadcasting Company.  It is a Christian radio station that Dr. Billy Kim started.   These girls are his assistants and they welcomed us so warmly.  They invited us to share our story at their company.












So comfy in her arms!












Look at his smile!  She took care of him while we had a meeting with Cindy.  We had a devotional and talked about our plans.  We are blessed to have a church family that cares about us and prays for us.  Even thought we don’t know what will happen, we know His plans give us hope and a future.










One of the deacons of the church took us to have a feast!  Cathie and Cindy were so brave to try some seafood that they had never seen.












We tried on the traditional Korean dresses.  It was such a neat experience.










We learned so many parenting skills from these experienced moms!  They babysat Luke while we went on a date!  We had such a great time but we sure missed our baby boy!










We had lunch with our friends from DBU.










We also had a special prayer time for Japan.












Saying good bye (and see you again) at the airport.












Doesn’t he look sad in this picture?  We already miss them both!










Cathie and Cindy, thank you so much for loving us, encouraging us, and ministering to us.  Both of you are such blessings from God.   We are also thankful for FBCA for sending them to see us.  We are blessed more than words can express!  Thanks be to God!




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