JapanCAN

be a place where the Gospel thrives… Beauty is key

What Can We Do About Japan’s Suicide Problem?

Suicide has deeply affected me and my family… When my father was a young man his beloved Uncle killed himself. The death of my dad’s Uncle was a heavy blow to my dad and to the rest of the family. Forty years later I spent many hours talking about what happened with my dad. My dad was finally ready to talk. It was a special time of connecting with him and incredibly good for both of us. A few years […]

A Courageous Call to Worship by Jim Altizer

“Who is Welcome to Worship?” is a unique call to worship video that invites everyone — pro-life, pro-choice, pro-fane, pro-vocative…. red, brown, yellow, black, white, all precious in his sight — to enter into worship of God. Below is the inspiring backstory from Jim Altizer’s Facebook page (used with permision): A very prominent national politician was stumping in my part of the U.S., and wanted to go to Church on Sunday. He chose mine. This was not someone who had endeared […]

Why I’m Interested in the Liturgical Church

Ten years ago I had no interest in liturgical worship, now it is my preference. What happened to me? My perspective began to shift after my wife, Nancy, became a student at the Institute for Worship Studies (IWS) in Jacksonville, Florida. Founded by Robert E. Webber, IWS offers Doctor of Worship Studies and Master of Worship Studies degrees. Apparently it is the ONLY graduate institution in America to focus exclusively on worship education. Nancy received her doctorate from IWS in 2006. Robert Webber […]

Does it Matter What Churches Look Like?

Sitting in the sanctuary of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis, IN last Sunday I thought, “The leadership of this church values art and creative people and they understand that people are deeply affected by their physical surroundings.” What prompted that thought? Redeemer meets in a historic (1902) cathedral style building that has beautiful forms and textures. The exterior is covered in what I assume is genuine handcrafted stone. From the inside I was amazed by the gorgeous stained glass windows (I […]

Is There Any Hope for Japan?

Many popular books portray Japan as a dark place with a bleak future. For over 25 years I have lived and worked in Japan as a missionary. I’ve spent countless hours studying the language and the culture.  Many of my best friends are Japanese. While I can see a dark side of Japan (every nation and culture has one) I choose to not focus on it. And, I see much that is positive in this great nation. There is hope for […]