Thursday, November 28, 2013

GIC Retreat
Twenty-four people gathered in the high desert north of Los Angeles for the Genesis International College retreat on November 1-4.  Despite a lengthy delay caused by the LAX shooting, God blessed our time together.  Just over half the participants have already committed to ten years with the team while the others are considering whether God may be calling them to join us.  Additionally, Bruce & Susan Young, veteran missionaries to Japan and mentors to our new team, encouraged us with their stories of God’s grace in sharing the gospel in Japan. This was the first occasion for many of the team members to meet each other.

Global Missions Conference
Nearly 3,000 people attended Mission to the World’s triennial Global Missions Conference earlier this month in Greenville, South Carolina.  Missionaries from around the world shared the challenges and the grace of God in their various ministries.  The “Japan Partnership” had a prominent display in the exhibit hall where visitors learned about the work in Japan as well as opportunities to join in bringing the hope of the gospel to Japan as financial partners, prayer partners, or by personally going to Japan for short-term or long-term missionary service.  There were dozens of seminar options where attendees could learn more about specific types of ministry, or ministry in specific nations.  Joseph Kim, President of Genesis International College, presented on reaching the lost youth of Japan.  During the Sunday morning worship service, Genesis College was featured in a five minute video.  You can view it by clicking here: GIC Video 2013.

The Japan Partnership hosted a lunch at a Japanese steakhouse.  More than 120 people attended and heard from missionaries from six different teams in Japan.  They also learned how their churches can become members of the Japan Partnership, whose goal it is to promote the work of the gospel in Japan and to coordinate their efforts with likeminded churches around the world.  If you would like information about the Japan Partnership, please email or call me (contact info is below).

Six years ago, I attended the Global Missions Conference trying to discern whether God was really calling me to missionary service in Japan.  I left convinced that I needed to apply and see where God would lead me.  It has been an exciting road as God took me away from the student development work I loved, gave me experience in and a heart for Japan, and then brought me back to working with university students in Japan.  Please pray that many others will heed God’s call upon their lives to either “go” or to “send” gospel laborers into the field.  Jesus says in Luke 10:2 “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few.  Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”

BIG NEWS!  Belhaven University Partnership!
We are excited to announce our partnership with Belhaven University in Jackson, MS.  This partnership lends credibility to our new college, helping us recruit students and offer them a top-notch education.  GIC students will take 25% of their classes online from Belhaven faculty, enabling our graduates to receive an accredited Associate in Arts degree from Belhaven.  With this, they can transfer to Belhaven or any other accredited university in America.

Belhaven University is a Christian liberal arts university dedicated to excellence in Christian higher education.  Prior to my first term in Japan, I worked at Belhaven for nine years including four years as the Dean of Student Life.

Brothers Behind Bars
I was highly honored to worship with, share the gospel with, and share God’s vision for GIC with 128 Christian brothers at the Tehachapi State Prison in the Mohave Desert earlier this month.  These men are sincere Christians, many of whom committed to praying for me and GIC.  I was convicted when one of them asked me to remember them in my prayers.  Hebrews 13:3 tells us to “remember those in prison.”  I encourage you to pray for prisoners and even to visit them.  You will discover great mutual encouragement!

End-of-Year Gifts
Would you please consider an end-of-year contribution?  All GIC faculty and staff are 100% funded by faithful financial gospel partners.  God has provided 54% of the pledges needed for my return to Japan.  I’m praying for 38 individuals who will partner with me at $100/month -- some more, and some less.  Pledges of any size help, and every one-time gift edges GIC closer to sharing the hope of the gospel with young adults in Osaka.

Checks can made out to "Mission to the World" and should include "Brent Kooi - 14009" in the memo line so that all contributions are properly credited.  Then send to:
    Mission to the World
    P.O. Box 116284
    Atlanta, GA  30368-6284

Thank You!