It was a hot August day when I first landed in Haneda airport in 1972. I was happy to be in my field as a missionary. Ever
since I was 13 I wanted to be a missionary.
But I was a Catholic then, and missionary meant going to Africa or some jungle place and living in the boonies with the natives.
Nevertheless I always wanted to help people and what better way to help the Japanese people than to give them the Gospel?
I will never forget when I first passed through Shinjuku station in Tokyo. I immediately got the words of Jesus:
"and when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion upon them, because they fainted and were scattered abroad as
sheep having no shepherd"
And then I knew I was in the right place at the right time. This was God's place for me. In those days in the Children of
God I believe we had the right motives for going into all the world to preach the Gospel to every creature,
except now that I look back in 20 20 hindsight, I see that
because of the spirit of drivenness embedded in the the goals of David Berg to get into all of the main cities in the World
by a certain time, we did not have the training to build the right kind of church God really wanted then.
We were driven to go out and witness and then litness (selling literature which were the letters of David Berg) but when he
said to leave our guitars at home and just go out and sell his letters and let him do all the witnessing, that broke my heart.
I ALWAYS took my guitar with me everywhere I went, even after he said to leave them home. I saw the opportunity to
sing and witness to the Japanese, and they really needed to know that Jesus loves them, and the best way I figure I could
do that was through song.
The Lord gave me a gift to sing to people and to lead them to Him through music.
When I couldn't take my guitar with me for some reason, I had a terrible time, a terrible day, just getting out lit to people
who didn't really want it, so that we could have enough money to send in for our quotas.
Needless to say I was not a money shiner and was accused of not having enough faith, but I was winning a lot of souls.
But the trouble was that there was no place to take them later or to meet them as we were on the road. we were told to get
their address and send it in to the mail ministry.
I was falling in love with Japan and I didn't see any other Christians out on the streets witnessing except these old missionaries
that had speakers and signs.
There also were young Mormon missionaries we would meet on the streets, but they wold only stay there 2 or 3 years , then
go back to the States and to school, having put in their time.
So I just kept plugging along, and soon we had two small apartments in down town Tokyo. We went out everyday to the universities
seeking and saving the lost.
This was before we knew much Japanese, and so we would talk to the students who could speak English, and I would sing to them.
We got invited once to sing on stage at their bunkasai (culture festival) and in those days (1973-4)foreigners were treated
like celebrities, even in Tokyo.
When we got out to the country side, even more so.
My first impression of the Japanese people was that they were very sweet, but quiet.
So different from America.
I was impressed with the fact that many of them were already Children of God, but did not know their God yet.
They did not know their savior and messiah yet, so I set out on my journey to introduce Him to them.
This has been a long 35 year journey and the journey is still not over. I hope to share many inspiring stories of my encounter
with the Japanese people and their reaction to the Gospel.
More stories later.