Japanese MB churches call for prayer

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Global day of prayer for victims and survivors of 2011 earthquake, tsunami 

ICOMB news story

Mennonite Brethren from around the globe are invited to join in prayer March 11 for victims, survivors and all affected by the devastating March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami that left some 20,000 people dead or missing. An estimated 23,000 Japanese are still living in "rescue" camps. 

The Japan MB Conference was planted out of relief efforts after the war-time man-made disaster of Hiroshima. Then it grew after a natural disaster when relief efforts touched new areas and churches were planted. 

"Pray that our involvement after this disaster may have similar results – of renewal of the established churches and the extension of the good news of Jesus Christ among those who have lost so much," says ICOMB interim executive secretary David Wiebe of Canada.

The time of prayer was initiated by Yamanota Fukuin Church, a Brethren in Christ congregation in Japan. The congregation invites others to pray with them for five minutes beginning at 11:45 a.m. on Sunday, March 11. “There is a time difference between each country,” notes the letter. “Thus our prayers from 11:45 will turn around the earth in 24 hours in the morning in each country, connecting our prayers like a huge ring on the earth.”

March 11, 2011, an earthquake of magnitude 9.0 now named Tohoku, struck the northeast coast of Japan, causing tsunamis of more than 10 meters.

Mennonite World Conference, the global fellowship of Anabaptists, is mobilizing its members to participate in this prayer event. The Japanese MB Conference, through the International Community of Mennonite Brethren, the global fellowship of Mennonite Brethren congregations, is asking the global MB family to join them in prayer. 

The Japan Mennonite Fellowship formed the East Japan Great Disaster Relief Assistance Committee formed in May 2011. The original prayer request was conveyed by Takanori Sasaki, chair of the Japan Mennonite Fellowship.

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