Sharing the good news of Jesus at Christmas


In Japan, Christmas is a great time to share the real meaning of Christmas!

  • Japanese are interested in Christmas, and OCSI held its Christmas programs on Nov. 30 and Dec. 7.
  • Students performed well, and those who attended heard the Gospel.

OCSI December program

Please continue to pray for God’s work in Japan:

  • Praise God that 2 OCSI students recently became Christians.
  • Ask God to use Christmas outreaches to draw Japanese non-Christians to Himself.
  • Ask God to provide staff for next school year for OCSI. We need  teachers (elementary, middle).

Thanks for being involved in God’s work in Japan!

Michael & Kim


Keep praying for my students!

Screen Shot 2018-11-01 at 3.00.04 PMKim reflects on using Christian education to reach Japan for Jesus. Few Japanese know Jesus, and many of her OCSI students are Japanese.

They trickle into my classroom on a rainy Wednesday morning, these 11th graders of mine. It’s early yet, so some of them put their heads on their desk to catch a few more minutes of sleep before the day truly starts. Some are quietly discussing a math problem. Others are getting out the Chromebooks I’ve checked out from the computer lab for the day’s writing. As more students come into my classroom, I greet them and think of the ways they analyzed their struggles in their recent essays on The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis.

For their essays, students wrote an original letter in the same style of The Screwtape Letters, and they critiqued a foible of human nature they notice as a teen at OCSI. They did such an excellent job!

  • One student wrote of the temptation to look good rather than actually be good.
  • Other students wrote about issues particular to Christian schools: questioning what it means when Christians behave badly, or the way familiarity with the Bible can make think you know it all.
  • Most of them wrote insightfully about core issues of adolescence: low self-esteem, focus on image, lying to avoid conflict and confrontation rather than actually solving problems, and the fear of big changes coming when they graduate.

I pray for each of them—they all know their struggles, and some of them know the God who will help them through, while others don’t. But I pray that God will use each of their struggles to create faith or to mature faith in Him. Please keep praying for my students and for Japan!

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Kim talks with a 10th grader about his essay on Biblical peace and justice. The essay is in response to a study of Cry, the Beloved Country.

First quarter went well!

Our first quarter at OCSI went well!

  • Elementary teachers used new science materials to help students learn about God’s world.
  • Students and parents attended Bible studies.
  • Kim’s students improved their writing skills and learned about a biblical perspective.
  • High schoolers made decisions for Jesus.
  • Though we missed 5 days of school due to typhoons, we were all safe.

Please continue to pray:

  • Praise God for a good first quarter at OCSI.
  • Ask God to draw parents (who attend OCSI’s weekly Bible study) to Himself.
  • Ask God to provide a full staff for next school year. OCSI needs teachers (elementary, middle, high), a head of school, and a maintenance coordinator.

Thanks for being involved in God’s work in Japan!

Michael and Kim
P.S. To learn more, check out OCSI on Facebook and Instagram!

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Kim is pumped about what her students learned

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Kim is pumped about what her students learned about a biblical perspective, after reflecting on Cry, the Beloved Country. Here are some essay excerpts:
  • “Love for God should come first, and when it does, your love for His creation, other people, and yourself should follow suit.”
  • “God created the world. If you disrespect his creation, that means that same thing as disrespecting God.”
  • “Through all the pain and sufferings, it is for us to stand firm with faith and to always go to God in times of need.”
Thanks for praying:
  • Praise God for what students are learning about a biblical perspective.
  • Praise God for safety during recent typhoons.
  • Praise God for the 17 OCSI parents who are attending an English/Bible class.
  • Ask God to provide a full staff for next school year.
Michael & Kim
P.S. You my recall that this is our final year at OCSI, after which we are going on home assignment for a year. In November, we are going to visit 2 international Christian schools as we consider future ministry possibilities. Should be a good trip!

We want our students to learn about Jesus!

We want our students to learn about Jesus! So, we provide Christian teachers, teach the Bible, and go to camp—check out the video! One elementary teacher shared, “Four of the girls in my cabin said they had not ever made decisions for Christ yet and weren’t ready to pray with me at the time, but were doing much reflection as our speaker shared about the different soils.”


  • Pray that these 4 students would follow Jesus.
  • Pray that God will use high school camp (September 24-26) to work in students’ hearts.
  • Praise God that 9 elementary students are attending a lunchtime Bible study.

Michael & Kim
P.S.For more photos, check out OCSI on Facebookand Instagram!

God is at work!

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Praise God…
  • That a recently baptized OCSI mom and her kids are coming to the church we attend.
  • For providing OCSI with a full staff, including bus drivers and bus monitors.
  • That our students (many of whom come from unchurched homes) are learning about God, His world, and their place in it.
We’re grateful for your prayers, gifts, and friendship.
Michael & Kim
P.S. If you have questions about our 1-year home assignment (that starts in June 2019) or about this being our final year at OCSI, please contact us. After home assignment, we’d like to continue using Christian education to share the good news of Jesus. We are already exploring schools in Japan and talking with our 2 missions (RCE and Resonate Global).


We’re off to a good start


Our 32nd year in Japan is off to a good start:

  • 8/13-17: Michael enjoyed leading staff orientation, which focused on student safety and effective parent communication.
  • 8/21: The first day of classes at OCSI went well!
  • 8/22: Kim’s students discussed their summer reading (David and GoliathThings Fall Apart).

Thanks for praying:

  • Praise God for a good start to this school year. We have 423 students.
  • Ask God to work in the hearts of our students. Many do not know Jesus.

Thanks for being involved in God’s work in Japan!

Michael & Kim
P.S. If you have questions about our home assignment that starts in June 2019 or about this being our final year at OCSI, please contact us.

We’ve had a good year at OCSI!

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We’ve had a good year at OCSI! Check out 1 or more sections of OCSI’s annual report:
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Please continue to pray:
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Helping students grow strong in Jesus


Last Saturday, we celebrated Children’s Day, a Japanese national holiday.
As part of the celebration, people flew carp streamers (see 34-second video). Why fly carp streamers? Because Japanese parents want their children to grow strong—just like carp.

Kim and I want children to grow strong, and we want them to grow strong in Jesus. To help children who attend OCSI grow strong in the Lord, OCSI provides role models, Bible class, chapels, and biblically integrated instruction.

Please keep praying for God’s work in Japan:

Thanks for being involved in God’s work in Japan!

Michael & Kim

We’re doing well—hope you are, too!

We’re doing well—hope you are, too!

  • Accreditation is done, budgeting is done, and parent-teacher conferences are done!
  • Today, we finished the 3rd quarter at OCSI. On Sunday, we celebrate Easter. And on Monday, we head to Tokyo (where we used to live) for spring break.
  • Our family (see photos) is doing well. Grandchild #2 arrives in September!
Please continue to pray for God’s work in Japan:
Michael & Kim
P.S. Please note that starting July 1, 2018, Resonate Global Mission will begin applying a 6.25% service fee for all gifts. Recognizing that this will affect our support level, Resonate Global suggested we share with you the following 2 options:
  • Option 1: Give through the other mission we are affiliated with, RCE International(Designate “14944”): Online • Electronic Fund Transfer • Check: RCE International, PO Box 4528, Wheaton IL 60189
  • Option 2: Continue giving through Resonate Global. If you wish to continue giving through Resonate Global and want us to receive the same amount of support, please increase your giving by 6.75%, starting July 1, 2018.
If you have questions or concerns, please contact us. We know July 1 is several months away, and we wanted to give you time to consider how you want to proceed.
Essenburg Update