Where are they now?

Returnee Stories


Funatogawa webYoshie was initially reluctant to come to any of our activities. However after much “bridge-building” she began to attend, first, the cooking class and later, the English Bible Class. Soon she was asking a stream of questions and for many months she continued to be an enthusiastic member of the group. Slowly we saw her change in her attitudes to Jesus but still she seemed unable to take the final step of faith. Then one morning we received a call from Yoshie asking to talk us. During this conversation she became a Christian.

Yoshie asked for baptism and she was baptized, surrounded by her family and Japanese and English friends.

Shortly afterwards Yoshie, her husband and three children returned to Japan and we and many others continued to pray for them. Yoshie joined a church before they were moved to the USA with her husband’s job. While there, Hitoshi, her husband, also became a Christian! Praise God!

This is an on going story and over the 15+ years two of the three children have become Christians. One, with his wife and baby, is studying at Bible School in Singapore and is ministering to Japanese people living there.

For many years this family have served God in their church and shared their faith with family, colleagues, and friends.

Two years ago Hitoshi took early retirement and he and Yoshie are now hosts at a retreat centre owned by their church near Mt. Fuji and lead a small church there.

The Kimura family

KimuraMachiko arrived in Manchester with her husband, Hiro, and their 2 children. She was a Christian but her husband was not. Machiko quickly became an enthusiastic member of all our activities and brought her Japanese friends too. As we got to know the family, Hiro decided to come to a men’s English Bible Class, and after some months he gave his life to the Lord at the Bilingual Service. He was later baptized.

Since their return to Japan they have served God faithfully in a small church in Northern Japan.

Their children are now both involved in their university “Christian Unions” and help out at church when they are at home.

Their home and church were damaged in the earthquake of 2011 and they and their fellow church members volunteer in the area hit by the tsunami. God has been their Rock throughout this time.


misa2Misa came to Manchester to study. She always wanted to work for a NGO and initially attended the Student English Bible Class in our home to improve her English and to experience more of English culture. During these classes and the Bilingual Service she became interested in Jesus and after attending the Christianity Explored course twice she became a Christian!

Misa was baptised and as the end of her course approached she began to pray about what job God had for her. Her hearts desire was to work for a Christian relief organisation but she felt it impossible for her, as a young Christian. When she heard about a job with World Vision in Japan she applied and was given the job. She joined a church in Tokyo. She has worked in South Sudan and is currently serving God in Jordan working on an education project for Syrian refugees.