Mark & Megumi Bocanegra

"Don't You Dare Stop Having the Global Missions Conference!"

By Dan Iverson, Oct 26, 2017

After the last Global Missions Conference (GMC), some MTW leaders considered not having another one. Some asked if it was worth all the effort and money.

But our six Japan teams strongly advocated for the conference. Japan is the world’s second largest unreached people group, and God used the 2013 GMC in specific, concrete ways to help us reach Japan with the gospel.

First, God used the 2013 GMC to mobilize more missionaries. Mark and Megumi Bocanegra (pictured above) came from seminary to attend. They’re now MTW missionaries in Japan. Brett was a high school student who attended the GMC with his father. We talked at the Japan booth about our gap year internship for qualified young people after high school. Brett came and served for a year before college—a year his mom recently wrote to thank us for. Seita Sakaguchi also attended in 2013. He and his wife, Emma, later joined our Tokyo Center team and became key members in planting Grace Harbor Church. Heaven will tell the full story of how God used the GMC to call people to missions.

God also used the GMC in the lives of our Japanese ministry partners. We hadn’t pushed for Japanese partners to attend previous GMC gatherings, but many attended in 2013. The impact was beyond our expectations. Church-planting partner Daisuke Kimura was exuberant about the conference. He told me this week that he plans to take two lay leaders from his Japan church plant to the GMC this November. Daisuke said, “The passion for God’s mission at the GMC was infectious, and I want that for people in our new church.” Japanese attender Haruaki Odate said, "We were encouraged to know that many Americans are praying for Japan, coming to Japan to evangelize, and supporting missionaries for the expansion of God’s kingdom." We’re working hard to bring even more Japanese ministry partners and lay people to the 2017 GMC because of the powerful way we believe God will use it in their lives to impart a passion for world mission.

God also used the GMC to grow our Japan Partnership of PCA churches committed to reaching Japan’s lost millions. Oak Mountain PCA pastor Tom Patton is the Partnership leader. Tom wrote, “The last GMC gave the Japan Partnership a venue to mobilize many new MTW missionaries at a time when most Japan mission groups are declining. The last GMC also enabled our Japan Partnership to continue Japanese translation projects like Tim Keller’s The Meaning of Marriage and Center Church. That momentum is enabling the Japan Partnership to serve MTW Japan more and more.”

We are thankful that MTW leadership listened and that MTW is hosting another GMC. We pray that the Lord of the Harvest will use this GMC to mobilize many harvest workers, supporters, and prayer partners for the sake of God’s glory and kingdom advancement around the world.

Join us Nov. 10–12 at the 2017 Global Missions Conference in Dallas! Visit

Dan Iverson is the MTW country director for Japan. 

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Pray for the relationships missionaries are developing with Japanese men and women. Pray for common interests and connections to be a bridge to the gospel.

Pray for the men and women in Japan who have been attending church to make a public commitment to Christ and to express their faith through baptism.

Please pray for the rebuliding efforts in Ishinomaki, Japan, and for church planting efforts in the region that have begun since the 2011 tsunami.

Pray for God to break through cultural barriers to draw Japanese men and women to Himself. And for God to call more missionaries to serve in Japan.

Pray for Japanese college students wrestling with new faith. Pray that they would have the courage to give their lives to Christ and not fear their family's reaction.

Pray for the U.S. church to send workers to Japan where less than 0.5% of people are Christians.

Pray for the Japanese to realize that money, health, education, and material possessions do not satisfy the human heart.

Pray for God to call college students to Japan for 2019 summer internships.

Pray for youth around the world to come to faith, and pray for missionaries who minister to the next generation. Young people often impact their whole familes for Christ.

Pray for children in Japan who are attending Christian school and influencing their families for Jesus. 


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