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New mission co-worker arrives in country to walk alongside Japan Mission

David and Sue Hudson are both Ministers of Word and Sacrament

by Kathy Melvin | Presbyterian News Service

The Revs. David and Sue Hudson are new mission co-workers in Japan. (Contributed photo)

LOUISVILLE — After months of delays caused by both the pandemic and visa issues, the Rev. David Hudson has finally arrived in Japan. His wife and fellow mission co-worker, the Rev. Sue Hudson, will join him there soon. The two are serving at the invitation of the United Church of Christ in Japan.

The Hudsons will serve as liaisons for Japan Mission in partnership with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). This Japanese faith-based organization, with headquarters in Kobe, provides legal, organizational and logistical support for the mission work that the PC(USA) does together with partners in Japan.

“I have every confidence in David and Sue. Their commitment to their faith and to furthering the self-determination of Yodogawa Christian Hospital and Japan Mission is strong,” said the Rev. Mienda Uriarte, coordinator for World Mission’s Asia and the Pacific office. “Their skill, their energy and fresh eyes will be a great addition to our important and ongoing work with Japan Mission.”

The Hudsons are both Ministers of Word and Sacrament. David Hudson was born and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina. Sue Hudson grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The couple met at Wake Forest University and most of their ministry work has been in North Carolina, which they feel is their family home.

The mission history with Japan is a long one.

Since 1859, the PC(USA) and its partners have been at the forefront of evangelism in Japan and instrumental in founding many local churches, Christian schools, universities and other institutions. These institutions have, over the years, become self-supporting, but Japan Mission continues to maintain a close relationship with them.

Japan Mission began in Osaka in 1955 with seed money from Presbyterian Women in the United States. Yodogawa Christian Hospital remains under the umbrella of Japan Mission. It has become one of the largest hospitals in the region and a pioneer in providing healing and faith-based care. It also operates the largest chaplaincy program of any hospital in Japan and is a pioneer in both the hospice movement and medical innovation.

Japan Mission recently entered into a partnership with the Presbyterian Church of Myanmar. It has also committed to partner with Agape Hospital in Kalaymyo, Myanmar, and is considering other projects to engage in together.

Japan has the world’s third-largest economy and is a major center for trade. Because of its well-known cultural heritage and natural beauty, it is increasingly becoming a popular destination for tourism. Low birth rates and minimal immigration have caused a population decrease in recent years.

The majority of Japanese observe Shinto and/or Buddhist traditions, and increasingly, many claim no religion at all. While the Christian faith has had a presence in Japan from ancient times, cultural and political barriers have resulted in slow growth for the Christian community. Nevertheless, the church in Japan is mature. Through its congregations and educational, welfare and medical institutions, it continues to witness to the love of Jesus Christ and make vital contributions to Japanese society.

To support the ministry of David and Sue Hudson, a gift can be made in their honor. Click here to give to Mission Personnel Support. Mission co-workers are notified when a gift is made in their honor.

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