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March, I would say, came in like a lion instead of a lamb in regards to the COVID pandemic. Japan seems to be in a state of unknowns. The Japanese government governs by managing panic and makes ambiguous statements to ensure that panic will not happen. We started March being strongly encouraged to not travel between prefectures, making the number of cases seem to decline. Once time lapsed, school ended, and as Spring Break began, our numbers quickly rose to an all-time high since the pandemic started, with ICU hospital beds being 100% full. Vaccination roll-outs have yet to even gain momentum, with many Japanese citizens not even sure they want to receive the vaccine. I am thankful that most people wear masks and, because of the culture, there isn’t much pushback to wearing one. We are disappointed with the slow action in trying to curve the number of cases and a clear directive from the government.
Komyo Church did meet for Easter, which was wonderful and a blessing, but we quickly went back online due to the number of COVID cases. Since many of our Bible studies and English classes are under five people, the church board decided it was up to the discretion of the teacher and class. Only one class chose to meet in person. Though the government doesn’t seem to express a
We continue to contact people through social media and pray for their well-being. It is hard to gauge where people are emotionally and spiritually. We are thankful for Saijo Sensei’s cautious and considerate approach to handling this situation.
strong level of concern, many of our students do and would rather not meet or continue to meet online.
Continue to pray for our youth. Our meetings have gotten canceled due to COVID restrictions, leaving our youth to grow their faith many times on their own. Pray the Spirit will lead and encourage, and their relationship with Jesus would grow.
I have heard many talk about Zoom fatigue, and I can understand it, but I continue to be thankful for the use of technology. It has allowed us to continue to meet as a mission and even to have prayer time with Raff and Sylvia Gaudio. It is a blessing to be able to start our team-building even before they arrive on the field. We continue to pray, hope, and look forward to the Gaudio family joining us. Please continue to pray with us.
We were so glad to see many of you during NAB’s Cultivate Partnership Zoom meeting. The positive and wonderful use of technology makes the world a little smaller. We appreciate the opportunity to fellowship with you all and hope those of you who were not able to join us will in the future. Thank you to those who participated.
The power of technology brings so much joy in our house as we have been able to watch Noah and Jonah play soccer for Houghton College. Noah will graduate May 8, and being able to watch his last college games was wonderful. We realized how much our kids and family are blessings from God and that we didn’t want to miss this important event in Noah’s life. It was last minute, but Elijah and I traveled to the States to be in person for Noah’s graduation from Houghton. There were many answers to prayer and doors opened that allowed us to make the journey. Having the ability to teach English online allows me to continue my teaching schedule and connection with my students. Paul was not able to join us for the graduation but will arrive in time to celebrate a very special birthday with his mom, Jean Ewing. We are thankful for family and realize how important they are.
Paul & Melissa Ewing