09 Dec The Enduring Vision for a Ship Ministry in Japan
Ever since working on the Youth With A Mission medical mercy ship ANASTASIS in the 1980’s, John Somers-Harris and I have had a persistent vision to see a group of people raised up to bless to the nations by way of a ship based in Japan. I met my Japanese wife Sachiko on the ship during her on-board Discipleship Training School in 1987. We named our son Noah, because we met on the ship. John’s wife also worked on the ship as a teacher.
There are currently seven YWAM vessels in operation around the world. They sail to small ports and large taking the “Two Hands of the Gospel”, spiritual and physical, to the poorest of the poor. Some carry medical and dental volunteers who perform free surgeries and dental care. Outreach teams from the ships also work through local churches to proclaim the Love of Jesus. In addition, building and community development projects are on-going.
We have been building a relationship with Marine Reach Ministries, which is based in New Zealand. John, Aki Hayashi and I have met with them several times to pray and plan about working together in the future.
We have been able to tour and inspect several ships for sale in Japan in order to help Marine Reach find a vessel to purchase to replace the one they gave to YWAM Australia.
This ship vision is an involved undertaking and takes a lot of prayer, time and finances to see it happen, but our God is mighty! If we got a ship tomorrow, we may not know what to do with it, but the ship itself is not the focus, it’s only a tool or a vehicle, the most important part of any mission are the staff members with a like-minded vision and of course, GOD and receiving His approval and direction.
As the YWAM Tokyo base is more pioneered and developed as a land-based ministry, we sense that is what needed first to see a ship ministry grow in Japan.
If you have any questions or comments about the ship ministry vision, please write us at: [email protected]. Please check out the Marine Reach website: www.marinereachministries.com
[Photo:: Bob and John touring a vessel last year in Kita Kyushu, Japan]
(Bob Bastable is a strong and bold voice in our community at YWAM Tokyo, sturdy in his faith and faithful to the commit)