Niigata, (nee-gah-tah) meaning new lagoon is the capital and the most populous city of Niigata Prefecture, with 810,000 people. It lies on the northwest coast of Honshu Island facing the Sea of Japan and the Asian continent. Niigata City is characterized by high humidity and strong winds from the Sea of Japan.


Many parts of Niigata Prefecture have heavy snow, but Niigata City itself usually receives less due to its low-lying elevation and the shielding effect of Sado Island off its coast. However, Niigata City receives much precipitation, mostly rain. On average, Niigata City has 250 days of rain or snow each year. This daily cloudiness and rain leads to the city being seen as “dark and dreary”.


With a long history as a port town, Niigata became a free port following the Meiji Restoration. Flood control and land reclamation have been important issues throughout its history as the city continually deals with its low elevation including the many lagoons, marshes and rice paddies. Niigata City has the greatest rice paddy field acreage in Japan. So, not all towns are filled with buildings and not all rice paddies are in the country!!!


Niigata prefecture is known for many “firsts”: Japan’s first vineyard, the first drive through restaurant, the first place to grow western pears, and the first postal system. It also claims the origin of the ornamental carp known as koi, which are flown in the sky on boy’s day.


Prayer Requests:

•   Pray for the people of Niigata City to receive Jesus, the True Vine, and become the “first” to be known for thousands of fruitful, growing Japanese disciples.
•   The city of Niigata is sometimes called the “City of Water”. Pray for people to thirst for God and come to Jesus who can give them living water, eternal life.
•   Just as an abundant harvest comes each fall from the rice fields in Niigata City, pray that an abundant harvest of souls and reproducing disciples and churches will soon come to Japanese in Niigata.


Prayer Profile – Niigata City (Downloadable PDF file)


Pray for an artist

Another update by Rachel who visited a town outside Niigata City with Lana in July. We drove to a small town outside of Niigata to visit a Korean mom and her two children and to meet a new Japanese believer. We had Bible Study, ate lunch together, and as the adults worked on the computer S-chan introduced me to […]

Pray for a Harvest

On our trip to Niigata we drove through a mountainous area where many Japanese like to go and ski.  Our car rode up and down the mountains and through numberous tunnels. One tunnel stretched about 10 miles through the mountain!  Small towns were tucked in the valleys between the mountains. We talked about the fact […]

Niigata and Sapporo

Click on picture to view. Niigata, on the Japan Sea side of Japan is one of the areas targeted by the JGPNetwork.  Surrounded by mountains on the east and the sea on the north-west, the snow covers the ground for much of winter. It is a city where no missionary resides. However, through the perseverance of […]


On this cold February Sunday afternoon as I write this it is snowing outside.  It is a time of colds, flu, etc. For A-san who has a cold, it is also a time of job aplications and interviews. Since A-san was baptized the third week in January either job application appointments, interview practices, or sickness has hindered getting […]

Not Forgotten

At Christmas each year especially, we are reminded that God has not forgotten us. As we think of Jesus’ birth we are reminded of how much He loves us—so much that He sent his son to live among us and die for us!!! We sing Immanuel and are reminded of His presence with us, today, […]

This is Summer in Japan

Trips to visit family or kids sent off to visit grandparents. Companies closed down for the obon festival. Visits to the family graves. Families or friends going on vacations out of the country. Traffic snarled on the expressways for tens of miles. Beaches crowded so that it is standing room only. Hot and humid evenings […]

Claiming His Promises for His Glory

We have a song we sing which focuses on how marvelous God is and that is what I want to do in this letter: focus on all the wonderful things God has been doing this month. First came a visit to Sapporo where God led in all kinds of divine appointments, training, and prayer and […]

The Reason for the Hope

Today we are in Okinawa. The sky is sunny and blue as the rainy season ends. We have been here for four days working with the church that meets at the Miku house. It was great to fellowship, pray, worship, and go out to visit. Mr. and Mrs. Miku have a new baby and next […]


May has been an exciting month; from the very first week with discipleship in Niigata and opportunities to present the gospel to Mr. Ho and others. Then up to Hokkaido, where Lana had an opportunity to disciple Mrs. H. T. and another of our personnel. The very next Tuesday H.T led Mrs. KI to the […]

Holding the Ropes in Prayer

Dear Prayer Partners: It has been several weeks since you heard from us and we apologize. Thank you for praying and for those of you who wrote in response to my SOS when my Outlook crashed. I think we are about back up to speed. Since we last wrote, Lana spent three days in Kagoshima […]