FCBC Serves Japan (September, 2017)

Day 1: Arrival at Yokohama

Five of us took an early flight with Delta airline. We landed at Narita airport at 2.20 pm and took a train to Yokohama station with the JR pass.

We met Shizuko-san at Yokohama station and together, we walked to Hotel Plumm which we booked online prior to the trip. We dragged our heavy luggage from the station to the hotel which was about a 20 minutes’ walk. Thank God for four-wheeled luggages!

When we reached the hotel, we checked into our rooms and settled our luggage before heading to dinner and to do preparation for Singapore Night the next day.

Day 2: FCBC Yokohama Service & Singapore Night

The team had a great start with breakfast at Doutor before meeting Pastors Caleb and Christina at FCBC Yokohama Church. We began with a prayer before Pastor Christina briefed us on the programme rundown. Each of us quickly took our places and went about preparing the food. David and Lilly assisted Pastor Christina with the bak kut teh. Stacy and I went to buy some last minute items and prepared the sour plum drink while Sarah took time to rehearse her testimony to be shared in Japanese during service. The pandan cake and mooncakes were brought over from Singapore. Stacy helped to buy lunch for all of us to eat-in at church.

Service commenced at 3pm with people starting to stream in. The team was kept busy since morning for this moment and it dawned on me that this is the reason we came for this mission trip – to meet and serve the people. The atmosphere was thickened with the presence of God as the song “Iesu Aishimasu” was sung during worship. Many were touched by the love of God through this song. Pastor Caleb shared what it means to be a true worshipper. It reminded me of the power of praise, especially when our circumstances do not allow us to give thanks. Sarah shared her testimony of God’s healing over her self esteem issues.

After service, many stayed behind for Singapore Night. We had a sumptuous dinner with the food prepared earlier. The Japanese enjoyed the bak kut teh very much. For Singapore Night, each of us changed into Singapore’s ethnic costumes and shared about how Singapore came to become a nation. We also gave them a glimpse of the variety of food available in Singapore due to our multiracial heritage and ended with a song, “Singapore Town”. As a couple, David and Lilly shared their personal testimonies and how they brought their children up in a Christian environment. God’s faithfulness was apparent as they recounted God’s provision upon their lives, their children’s and even their grandchildren’s lives. The message of hope, which was our theme for the trip, was clearly communicated to the Japanese who listened attentively to their sharing.

Singapore Night was a success and we returned to our hotel exhausted but grateful.

From left: David, Lilly, Pastor Christina, Pastor Caleb, Sabrina, Sarah and Stacy

Day 3: Yokohama Kaigan Church, Landmark Tower & Keio University

The team went to Jonathan’s to have our breakfast before meeting Pastors Caleb and Christina at church for the day’s activities. Pastor Caleb introduced us to Jesus Film and taught us how to use it as an opener to share the gospel to students whom we were going to approach at Keio University later in the evening.

The first place we went to was Yokohama Kaigan Church, the first Japanese church in the country. It was founded in 1872 by an American missionary at a time when Christianity was still barred by the government. We prayed for revival and renewal for Yokohama city; that God will complete what He started in Yokohama when He established the Yokohama Kaigan Church.  We also prayed for Yuri’s marriage since the church was significant to her because her wedding took place there. As we sat down on stone benches, Yuri took out the Shofar and decided to blow it as a prophetic act of faith. When Pastor Christina decided to try blowing, she and two Japanese heard a Shofar-like sound coming from elsewhere. As it was impossible for someone else to be blowing a Shofar around the vicinity, Pastor Christina felt it was the heavenly angels who were blowing the Shofar. We praise God for giving them a supernatural encounter!

Next, we went to a nearby Ootoya restaurant for lunch and to Landmark Tower thereafter. The Landmark Tower has a 360-degree view of Yokohama city and we took this opportunity to lay claim over the city by speaking God’s hand of blessing over Yokohama. Looking down with an aerial view of the city, it was evident that the city was built very densely with buildings situated close to one another. There was a strong sense of striving among the Japanese, and we sensed that concern over the need for perfection drives many to be busy on the outside but dead on the inside.

We met up with Pastor Caleb at the station and took a taxi to Keio University. While waiting for some of us to arrive, Sarah spotted a 10,000 yen note on the ground and gave it to Pastor Caleb. The next morning, Pastor Caleb told us that the 10,000 yen belonged to him and it fell from his pocket unknowingly. Thank God for watching over our possessions! Although it was the first time Pastor had gotten the chance to meet a few Japanese Christian students at the university and the time spent with them was short, we gave thanks for the favour and open door.

Day 4: Prayer Tower & Depart to Sendai

We had a great start to the day at Oslo Café before going to church for prayer tower. Prayer tower at Yokohama was different from the prayer tower we had at Singapore. There were no prayer prompters or slides, just a chair each for sitting or kneeling. After worship, we took time to pray in tongues and shared as the Spirit led. We prayed according to the prompting of the Spirit. We also prayed for Yin Hoon, a Singaporean who resides in Yokohama, to have the anointing of a mother over her children who were having their final examinations.

We said our goodbyes to the Yokohama church members and headed to Sendai with our luggage in tow. It was night time when we arrived at Sendai and we met up with Yuko-san, the translator and staff member of FCBC Sendai. Sarah, Stacy and I stayed with Yuko in her apartment, while David and Lilly lived with Pastors Caleb and Christina in another unit in the same block.

Day 5: Kids’ E-Circle & FCBC Sendai Cell Meeting

Sendai was slightly colder than Yokohama. However, the weather was warm and sunny in the day. The highlight of the day was the children’s E-Circle programme. We spent our day preparing for the E-Circle and buying materials for the craft work. Yuko started with a song and dance in English, and Stacy led them in a game of Pictionary. Even though it was a guessing game, the children took their drawing seriously and wanted to draw something that was accurate to the picture they were shown. After a round of Pictionary, we did craft work and interacted with their parents. The kids enjoyed themselves and were excited to receive goodie bags from us. We ended the E-Circle by playing bubbles with the children at the courtyard outside.

After the E-Circle, we made our way to dinner at the soba shop in the church building and had a time of fellowship with church members before cell meeting. It was nice getting to know the others in a more intimate setting and we ended cell meeting by praying for two upcoming events, namely FCBC Sendai’s 3rd anniversary and Encounter Weekend.

Day 6: Hirose River, Aoba Castle & Costco

The team spent the day visiting Hirose River, a river where missionary pioneers were drowned as martyrs during the period of heavy prosecution. We lingered in prayer trusting that those who gave their lives for the gospel would not die in vain, and their courage and obedience would be remembered by generations of Japanese Christians in Sendai. Next, Pastor Christina drove us to Aoba Castle and showed us from a vantage point the areas which were affected by the tsunami. She shared with us that there was a blackout in the entire city as a result of the tsunami.

In the evening, all of us headed to Costco to buy groceries for Singapore Night in Sendai. Besides buying ingredients, we also took the opportunity to purchase snacks for ourselves. Pastor Christina also picked up items in preparation for the upcoming Encounter Weekend for both Yokohama and Sendai’s church members.

Day 7: Kids’ Door Programme & Sendai House of Prayer

The team spent the morning preparing food for the Kids’ Door Programme happening later in the evening. Sarah was asked to give a career talk for the students at the Kids’ Door Programme on her occupation as a vet. We made our way there with the food we had prepared and served dinner to the students. Sarah’s presentation kept the students glued and they were attentive throughout. Even though the time we had with the students was limited, we were grateful for the opportunity to serve with Kids’ Door, a non-profit organisation that provides free tuition to students from less well-to-do backgrounds.

House of Prayer

The team spent the morning preparing food for the Kids’ Door Programme happening later in the evening. Sarah was asked to give a career talk for the students at the Kids’ Door Programme on her occupation as a vet. We made our way there with the food we had prepared and served dinner to the students. Sarah’s presentation kept the students glued and they were attentive throughout. Even though the time we had with the students was limited, we were grateful for the opportunity to serve with Kids’ Door, a non-profit organisation that provides free tuition to students from less well-to-do backgrounds.

We ended the day by attending the monthly Sendai House of Prayer meeting co-hosted by FCBC Sendai and Praise Community Church (PCC). House of Prayer meeting is held every last Friday of the month. We thank God for bringing another church to partner with Pastors Caleb and Christina on this journey of reaching out to the people in Sendai.

Day 8: Sendai Food Fair, FCBC Sendai Service & Singapore Night

After our morning breakfast at the apartment, we quickly divided our tasks for Singapore Night. We spent a large part of the day cooking and also managed to take time to visit the Sendai Food Fair near the church for our lunch. Service started at 5pm. Sarah led a worship song with the rest of the team members doing the actions to the song. After worship, I shared my testimony about how God brought me through the darkest period of my life. Pastor Caleb preached on unity in the community. After service, we served dinner. The roti prata was a crowd favourite. After dinner, we began the Singapore Night programme. There were icebreakers, introduction to the racial costumes and food dishes in Singapore as well as a video demonstration on how roti prata is made. We ended the night with a song and took a group photo to remember the people we met in Sendai.

Concluding Reflections

Humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps (Proverbs 16:9). As I hear the testimonies of how God led Pastors Caleb and Christina to start their Japan mission, their divine encounters with people and God’s provision in everything, I am encouraged that God has an amazing plan for His people. Evangelism and discipleship is a long journey. We must sow far and sow good. Not just in Japan, but everywhere, we must not grow weary in doing good and do our part.

As I observed Pastors Caleb and Christina throughout this trip, I realised that being a missionary is a challenging calling in many aspects and I would like to ready myself so I can go where God calls me to when the time comes. This trip gave me greater compassion for the Japanese and I hope to write worship songs for the Japanese and pray for them on a regular basis.

I believe that our time with them has brought fun and laughter and opened their eyes to see the importance of true community.

- Stacy

This trip had its victories and obstacles. There was insufficient time to prepare and I felt inadequate in my musical abilities, Japanese language and public speaking (I have stage fright). However, I recognise that my skills do not necessarily have to be perfect. As long as I give my best, the outcome lies with God.

Our presence there allowed the FCBC Yokohama and Sendai members to connect with fellow Christians from FCBC Singapore. When they heard our testimonies and witnessed us working together, they saw what a victorious Christian life and Christian community is like.

Children from the E-Circle enjoyed themselves and guests from Singapore Night liked the Singaporean dishes prepared for them. My experience with LoveJapan has encouraged me to overcome my fear of leading worship and playing the guitar.


This trip is meaningful for me because this is my first time going on a mission trip and leading it. The planning was challenging in many ways. However, when it came to the actual trip, the team worked together seamlessly and the execution was smooth. On this team, there is no one who is particularly excellent in something. We did our research on recipes, chose easy-to-play songs and gave our best within the tight timeframe amidst our own busy work schedules. In spite of all these, I thank God for the team members who supported and helped one another both in the planning and during the trip. I am personally proud of what we accomplished on this mission trip as there was a lot to do, every day was packed with activities and as the days progressed, we slept later into the night.

No one on the team was there by accident and I know that God had plans for us to be there to bless the Japanese. Even though it was nerve-wrecking to be sharing a part of my testimony that is close to my heart, I believe that my sharing resonated with many and encouraged them on their faith journeys. This mission trip is short but as a team, we have left a mark in each of the people we interacted with. It has developed a stronger sense of compassion for the lost in me. I am truly inspired by Pastors Caleb and Christina’s obedience to God’s calling for them, and their selfless giving towards the Japanese. We will continue to keep them in our prayers.


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