The Kasumigaoka RP Church has hosted an ESL (English as a Second Language) classes for several years. Pastor Charles Leach and his wife Susan taught the class for several years. Thanks to their witness, one of the class members came to profess faith and was baptised about 3 years ago.
Pastor Leach and his wife eventually moved back to the states and Benaiah Hovee took over and has continued teaching the class for the last 3 years. The class grew by a couple members via friends bringing them along, so there were able 5-7 attendees in total with an average attendance of 3-5. All the members were in their 50-60’s. The class was made up of half Christian and half non-religious.
The class would meet once a week on Wednesday nights and would study English for the first half of the class, and then read/study the Bible in English for the last half of the class. When Benaiah was teaching, the class was reading the gospels. After finishing one, they would move onto the next. The class members really enjoyed each other’s company and would get together outside of the ‘classroom’ to go out to eat together, the class also had a chat group to stay in touch, and all the members came to church once for Benaiah and Izumi’s wedding. It was a blessing that they all did come to church eventually and heard a sermon. The class eventually ended as Benaiah and his wife moved more than an hour and a half away.
A couple of those class members are continuing to go to an English Bible Class that is being held at another of the RP Churches, Higashisuma. Benaiah’s good friend William Dawson has been leading that class. They meet on the 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month and have 2 classes. One for children and one for adults.
The English Bible classes are the easiest way to get connected with the community around us as almost all Japanese people like English culture. The RP Churches in Japan are looking forward to Rory Cerbus and his wife Bethany and 3 children move to Japan as having more native English Speakers is a wonderful opportunity for making connections. And having more people in the church to serve will be a blessing to the Presbytery as a whole, as the churches are fairly small, and the young families are few.
- For the English Bible Class at the Higashisuma RP Church. Pray that God would use this time to speak to people through His word
- For those who live in the Kasumigaoka congregation who are unable to attend the English Class. Pray for them to stay connected to the church and to keep reading the bible, and for their Salvation.
- Pray for the Cerbus family as they make plans to move. Pray that they would be blessed and a blessing to the churches in Japan.
- Pray for the RP Church in Japan, that they would grow numarically and spiritually.
Thanks to Benaiah Hovee for writing this post for us. Benaiah grew up in Indiana at Southside RPC but went to Japan on the RP short term mission trips starting 2012. Eventually he moved to Japan in 2018 and transferred his membership to the Higashisuma RP congregation where he was for several years. Recently he and his wife Izumi moved and transferred their membership to the Mukonoso RP Church