This past Sunday was one of my favorite days of the year: Reformation Sunday (it's right up there with the entire season of Lent).
My day started with the Children’s Worship Service followed by Sunday School. I was chillin’ with the kiddos, drawing and such, when Yui-Chan (a girl from the older class) came in and poked me in the side. She sat down next to me and taught me kanji for the rest of the Sunday School hour (including how to write her name). She’s such a sweetheart and I love her oh-so-much! Oh, and by the way, she doesn’t speak English.
|* You've probably already seen this picture before from a previous post... *|
* but this is Yui-Chan! *
Then it was time for the Reformation Worship Service, complete with a mandolin ensemble (since Luther wrote hymns by lute/mandolin). The ensemble played Amazing Grace and I found myself missing my violin… a lot. I thought the bagpipes were the way to go, but mandolins trump bagpipes hands down! Also, two adults were baptized during the service. It’s amazing what God is doing over here! And in true Japanese style, A Mighty Fortress was played very politely (irony?).
|* The Mandolin Ensemble *|
Afterward, the congregation held a special lunch welcoming the new members of the church: the 2 who were just baptized… and me. I didn’t know I was going to be a special guest at this shindig, so I got the opportunity to give an impromptu introduction in Japanese – EPIC SUCCESS! Toward the end of the lunch, we heard some words of wisdom from the eldest members of the congregation (I didn’t understand any of those words) and received a small bouquet of flowers (now there’s something alive in my room besides me). God is opening doors for me left and right! And that concluded the church activities for the day.
|* The flowers I received *|
I think my greatest victory thus far in Japan came Reformation Sunday Evening when a bunch of us, American and Japanese, went to a restaurant called Izakaya where we ordered a bunch of dishes and shared everything. It was a really great time of fellowship and much needed unwinding. The victory is in the fact that I, being a semi-picky eater back in the States, ate oyster, squid, octopus, and raw horse meat that night. And in the end, none of it was bad… I have been reformed!
|* Oysters! *|
And here ends the Chronicles of Reformation Sunday 2010. I hope yours was as Reformationtastic as mine was!