COVID-19 has been difficult for so many for a variety of reasons. One of these is the cancellation of events that many people have looked forward to and feel the loss of keenly. Read below about how one of our ministry partners is bringing joy into peoples’ lives by expressing the hope of the gospel through a traditional artistic practice.

This year due to COVID-19, many of the festivals in Japan were canceled. Japan has a huge festival culture, so many people are extremely disappointed that they are not being held. Specifically, in Sendai – where the arts team is located – they canceled the Tanabata Festival. During this festival, people make wishes on the stars in the hope they will come true. Many beautiful hanging balls and streamers called “Kusudama” are hung all through the pedestrian streets. However, none of the decorations are on display and many people are feeling down because of it. So, to liven the spirits of our friends and neighbors and to show them that we are thinking of them, we created mini-Kusudama and wrote our wish from Scripture on the side, "That they would be filled with hope and joy by the Holy Spirit” (see Romans 15:13). Everyone who has received one has loved it, and you can see the joy on their faces when they see we care for them in such a way.