Reaching Japanese people

written by OM International

A hundred people attended the onboard event organised especially for Japanese people who are living in the Argentine capital. Shinya Funakoshi (Japan) wanted the community to know that they are welcome on board Logos Hope. The children living on board performed a drama, musicians gave a percussion show and different dances were showcased; including Ori Tahiti, Bollywood and the Korean fan dance. Jun Nukada (Japan) shared a message in his mother tongue and each Japanese crewmember currently serving on the ship made sure to be involved in some way.

The guests showed their delight at meeting people from their homeland. Pastor Luis Yonamine, who was born in Argentina to Japanese parents, explained that while members of the group that performed their traditional dance at the event were not believers, they felt privileged to be part of an event on the ship and that it had been a positive opportunity.

Pastor Luis had served on board one of the organisation's previous vessels, Doulos, from 1981 to 1983. “We wanted them to see Logos Hope and see not just what Christians say – but also what we do; showing our faith through our work,” he says. Pastor Luis wants the community to see that truly knowing God isn’t about religion, but about a personal relationship.

“I believe that when a non-believer comes to a place like this, full of prayer, the Holy Spirit touches hearts,” Pastor Luis says. “Christians and churches should use the ship’s visit as an opportunity to bring others along; God does miracles. It is also an exceptional opportunity to travel the world in an hour, meeting volunteers from so many different countries.”

Shinya explains, “Japan is a least-reached country, but I've been told that in Argentina, there are many opportunities to hear the gospel, in Spanish. First-generation Japanese people need to hear it in Japanese. After the ship leaves, I believe Pastor Luis can continue the task.”

“This event showed the visitors that Christians are not only in Argentina, but in the whole world,” Pastor Luis says. Several people phoned him after the event, to express their gratitude for the experience. The pastor praised Logos Hope for coming to his country and using the rich multitude of nationalities on board to connect with others.