In April of 2009, we started teaching English classes as a way to reach out to the communities around our churches. For us, we really enjoy it because it allows us to build deeper relationships and make new contacts with our surrounding neighbors.
Enjoy English Classes
Our team teaches English Classes for adults at Koyo Chapel, Kabe Chapel, and Asaminami Chapel. We teach beginner and intermediate levels, each class about an hour long. Afterwards, the students enjoy a 15 minute children’s Bible reading time, and a 15 minute tea time. With much laughter, the students learn English, and through these English classes many students have attended church activities and eventually visiting our church services. We have seen several students come to know Jesus as their personal Savior from the relationships built through this ministry.
Kids Brown is a 4-year program that is becoming more and more popular throughout Japan with more than 100 centers nationwide. Our team and one other teacher teach approximately 50 students, 5 classes per week at the three chapels. The program is based on a short CD that the kids listen to during the week, a workbook, storybook, extra learning online, and touch-screen software for class times. Parents love the fact that they get a fun storybook every month that their kids enjoy looking at, and that siblings can look at too. English is one of the top three after-school programs that Japanese kids are signed up for. Our classes start with prayer and end with a Bible story every week, and the kids are also given fliers to church outreach events now and again – to which many of them attend. We know that this can be a deterrent for some parents, but we still have more students than we can handle. Praise God!
Smile Club takes place at Asaminami Chapel on two Fridays per month from 10:00-11:30am. It’s an outreach to babies & toddlers and their moms to come have fun in a safe, welcoming, and bright environment. We start with some free-play while everyone gets settled in, then go on to mommy & me musical activities, the day’s main activity, and then snack time with a short talk & discussion time with Pastor Yamada. Jenny and two Japanese leaders take turns providing the main activity of the day. Jenny’s mini 20-minute English lessons have been a big hit with the toddlers & moms!
Smile Club has been a great opportunity for the moms of young kids at Asaminami Chapel to invite their not-yet-believing friends to church. There are only a few Christian moms with little ones at Asaminami Chapel but we average about 8-10 kids per gathering! It also provides a much needed service for moms of young kids – a place where their toddlers can play, learn, and enjoy a healthy snack, and a place where the mommies can relax for a bit and get some input through learning and discussing parenting issues, all for just 100 yen.