Arrivals

Simon & Joanna McClure

What is your current ministry?
We have been part of Chinese DRM (Diaspora Returnees Ministries) for two and a half years. Our previous two terms (five & four years) were in the Far East. We are based in Glasgow and work with Chinese Returnees through various church settings.

Highlight of your term?
Seeing two Chinese students get baptised in our first Chinese service at the local church where we worship in Glasgow.

What can we pray for your future and your field?
We hope to have six months home assignment (HA) and continue to be in the DRM for another two terms, God willing! Pray for safe travel for Simon while the girls and I are staying in Glasgow. He will travel to different places to mobilise for our work as well as continuing some of our ministry in Glasgow. We are not sure what we are expecting in this HA, as we haven’t done one in the DRM field before. We are used to going home for a year, not staying in our ministry location.

What's the most unusual thing you saw this term?
Perhaps it was in our first month in Glasgow; we hadn’t got a clue what some of the locals were saying to us and most people asked us ‘where do you stay?’ and I (Joanna) got a bit puzzled by this question. Finally I understood it meant where do I live! Glaswegian is a new language for all of us!

Peter & Renate Yonge

What is your current ministry?
We have been pastoring Hatazawa Church, in Chiba prefecture about 50 miles south-east of Tokyo, for the last three years. The church has existed for 32 years, and our brief was to lead through the final stages to independence. As I write, we have a candidate interested in becoming pastor, so it's getting exciting!

Highlight of your term?
After two and a half years with no baptisms, we have had two in two months (Sept, Oct 2016), one of them in the sea! It's just wonderful to see people whose hearts are changed, longing to know more of the Lord.

What can we pray for your future and your field?
We are due to go to a different region of Japan after HA, to lead a missionary team in a young church plant - that'll have new challenges. For that matter, you could also pray for the six-month HA period itself - partly in Germany, partly in the UK - with many details to be worked out.

What's the most unusual thing you saw this term?
We've been involved in several funerals while at Hatazawa. Somehow, we still can't really get used to the scene at the crematorium: while the cremation is going on, the guests retire to a side room for a packed lunch and (generally cheerful) chat, then you get the call ‘The bones are ready for collection’ and everyone stands round the fireproof slab – still warm – picking up individual bones with chopsticks and putting them in the urn one by one.

Sarah H

What is your current ministry?
I work with the main evangelical denomination training local churches to use holistic end-of-life care to bring the good news into their communities.

Highlight of your term?
Speaking to those who've taken part in the training and hearing how they've put it into action. One church team in a big city have been caring for a man with kidney failure using this approach; he accepted Christ and was baptised.

What can we pray for your future and your field?
Pray that we will find some local people who could become trainers for the course, so that we can respond to the growing interest amongst churches to train their members.

What's the most unusual thing you saw this term?
Getting up one morning to find a rat swimming
in my toilet!