When Simon and Henrietta Cozens settled in Fushimi, their aim and vision was to explore different ways of being and doing church. They wanted to find a way which focused on the essentials of evangelism and discipleship, so they became involved with a number of groups of people in their local area and established good relationships with key people in the community. They also began learning Japanese Sign Language in order to reach out to Japan’s deaf community and reach more people.
Simon and Henrietta are leaders of the Children’s Committee for their Residents’ Association, which has enabled them to get to know more local families. Last year they started a church for parents and children, called Oyako Church. It is of the messy church variety, encouraging families to worship together through songs, stories and craft activities. They meet twice a month on Sunday mornings in the local community hall with around ten families. Three of the mothers have formed a team with Henrietta to help run it. Henrietta says, “We’ve been meeting up once a month for a prayer and planning time, and it’s been good to see them discipling each other spontaneously as they chat.”
Simon has been working on a computer app which was recently launched for iPhones and tablets that will allow deaf people to view and interact with the Japanese Sign Language Bible. Please pray that through this new technology, many deaf people will have access to the gospel. Please pray for their messy church to grow.
– A story from Japan