Friday, December 31, 2010

Looking back (and forward)

What a gift it is to be able to look back on a year with thanksgiving. We truly had a wonderful year in 2010, and are anticipating another one in 2011.

Here's a look back at some of the reasons 2010 was a fantastic year, as well as some prayers for 2011.

We were able to be a the weddings of 4 of our friends/family, and meet 3 of our friends' new babies!

We were surprised with a puppy, Biscuit, who adopted us this past March.

We were able to spend our last Christmas in the states (for a while) with our families.

The decision was made to place us in Sapporo, Japan with Sapporo Evangelical Free Church with Pastor Kaji and his family (who we are very excited to meet!)

This coming year, we are looking forward to meeting our new church family in Sapporo, learning more and more and more Japanese, and ministering to our neighborhood in Japan.

Please pray with us that
-Our paperwork would be okayed and come through the proper channels quickly.
-That we would transition to life in Japan well.
-That God would prepare a special place for us with in our church and neighborhood.

Blessings to you and your family on this Eve of the New Year!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Packing break

Packing is hard.

My brain is about to explode.

I am currently sitting with all of our stuff trying to decide what the bare minimum of stuff we should bring from America for 3 years in Japan.

It is even harder than it sounds.

And the poor cat thinks she is coming too.

On the plus side, we were able to sell our couches and are putting the money towards the "warm clothes fund." The down side of that is we now have nowhere to sit.

Ok. Back to work.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Church Profile

Sapporo Evangelical Free Church


Adonai International Church

Hokkaido, Japan

Partnering with Asian Access through the Church Planting Associate Ministry


Rev. Tsutomu Kaji, pictured above with his wife, Yoshiko, at a recent pastors' marriage conference. The Kajis have two daughters and two sons, all in their twenties. The Kaji family lives in the Sapporo church building with three of their children.


When the Evangelical Free Church of Japan celebrated its fiftieth anniversary 11 years ago, denominational leaders sounded the call for someone to move to the northern island of Hokkaido to pioneer new work. The Kajis responded to that call and moved. Since then Pastor Kaji has planted two churches. The two congregations’ membership now totals 43; weekly worship attendance averages 55. They have started outreach in a third location, near Sapporo station, where they want to plant their next church.


Years ago when they prayed for property in Sapporo, the Lord surprised the Kajis with a building right next to a university. In prayer they discerned God leading them to reach out to university students. Many students have come to Christ through the church members and short-term teams from Korea and the US. Pastor Kaji wants to expand this work through Asian Access missionaries, and is thankful the missionaries coming are much closer to the students in age than the Kajis are!

Before retiring in about ten years the Kajis want to complete their third and fourth Hokkaido church plants, reach many more for Christ and raise up the next pastor. As a step toward these goals, an assistant pastor will begin working with them in 2011, and will live in the Adonai Church building (about 45 minutes from the Sapporo location).


Evangelical Free


Sapporo, Japan’s 5th largest city with 1.9 million people

Chitose, a city near Sapporo

Ministry Plans

The Kajis have used English classes to reach people throughout their decades of ministry. Mrs. Kaji teaches children’s classes. The Kajis have not been able to have regular adult classes in recent years because there’s been no one to teach. They look forward to restarting this ministry and reaching, through the Borbas’ English classes, many university students and others in the neighborhood. They look forward to having the Borbas involved in their church plant with students and young adults near Sapporo Station, and to seeing how God will use the Borbas’ artistic abilities to enrich the church and create new relationship opportunities with non-Christians.

Partnership with Asian Access

Hokkaido Church Multiplication Network, 2008-2011

Summer ministry with short-term teams, 2009-2010

Area Coordinator's Comments

When Asian Access first began discussing new missionaries arriving in 2011, I thought, “We definitely need to place someone at Sapporo Evangelical Free.” I’m thrilled God has clearly confirmed His leading that Stephen and Kathryn Borba serve there.

The Kajis are harvest-focused and have a uniquely strong commitment to church planting. I’ve been impressed that they never get hung up on problems or challenges but keep their focus on what God is doing and what they pray He will do.

Once I commented to Pastor Kaji, “It’s too bad so many of the university students you lead to Christ move away after graduation.” His reply reflected his kingdom focus: “It’s O.K. We make sure they get well-grounded in the Word before they go, and then we find each a good church in the new location.” In that conversation and others, I’ve seen Pastor Kaji’s clear commitment to God’s kingdom work, not solely to building up his own church.

I once heard Pastor Kaji share with other pastors, “We want our weekly prayer meetings not to simply take members through the scheduled things: worshiping, reading the Bible, praying. We want our members to truly experience God’s presence.”

I look forward to seeing the Lord allows Stephen and Kathryn to experience His presence in new ways through ministry in Sapporo, and how He uses them to help many more people become followers of Christ in this country where more than 99% of the people remain unreached.

Tim Clark


Tim and Wakako Clark,

Asian Access Area Coordinators, Hokkaido

Pastor and Mrs. Kaji at the Sapporo Church with friends from the US.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Let it snow, Let it snow, Let it snow...

Last night, after many prayers, many months, and some more prayers, a decission was made about our placement in Japan.

Stephen and I will be serving with the Evangelical Free Church of Sapporo in Hokkaido, JP. We've been told the pastor, Kaji Sensei, is a visionary leader. His first church in Sapporo has already multiplied into two, and soon they will be working on their third.
One of the things we are most excited about is that the main church is located across the street from a university, and one of our ministries will be to college students. I'm already planning game nights for students I haven't even met yet!

As far as timing goes, it is looking like mid-January, although exact dates have not been set yet. At that point we will go into a 2 month language study period, and will begin officially working with the EV Free of Sapporo in March (after the A2 Staff retreat).

I'll keep you all updated about timelines. And I will let you know more about the church soon.

Thanks for your continued prayers. Our Lord has been and will continue to be faithful.
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