Missionary Katie Narum Miyamoto
Konichiwa! Hello! My name is Katie Narum Miyamoto, and I am an ELCA missionary to Kumamoto, Japan. I am originally from Minot and grew up in the Minot area. I finished my Bachelors at Minot State in Music Ed and EI Ed. I went to Japan in September of 2000 and have been there ever since.
I work with the churches in Kumamoto with music and youth groups. I am also working with the Sunday school programs. We have an international English-speaking congregation that meets on Sunday evening. We are trying to get a children’s program set up for that group also. Right now, we have children (and adults) from the United States, Australia, Korea, Zimbabwe, Kenya, and of course Japan. I hope to get something up and running later this fall. Email me if you have any advice!
I work full time at Luther High School in Kumamoto. Our campus has a kindergarten, junior high, high school and 4 year college. It is wonderful to be with the young people, teaching English, and helping them to not only realize their dreams (of speaking English), but realize that God loves them and is calling them to follow Him. The percent of Christians at our school, about 5%, is only slightly higher than the percent of Christians all over Japan, about 1%. So it is a wonderful opportunity to share with them about Christ, when they are fresh and new to understanding Christianity. However, it makes me get back to the basics of my faith when you are trying to explain who Christ is to someone who knows nothing about Christianity.
The Japan Evangelical Lutheran Church (JELC) has 137 congregations, and a little over 22,000 baptized members. It is small, but there are many active members who work with the ELCA and Finnish Lutheran missionaries. The JELC now has its own programs whereby it sends Japanese missionaries to Brazil, India, Bangladesh, and other places in the world. It is exciting to see the Japanese come and go, changing lives and being changed by the chance to go overseas.
Do you want to become a missionary? There are so many programs through the ELCA that will give you chances to share your faith and be changed in the process. Check the ELCA Global Missions website, or email me if you are interested in my work…or coming to Japan: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Peace & Prayers,
Katie Sue Narum Miyamoto