The last, what week and a half have been CRAZY! Two Fridays ago I was woken up by an early morning text from a good friend asking if my family in Japan was ok? Not sure why she was asking I pulled up the news on my phone. When the lead story was all about the earth quake in Japan I sat straight up and startled Kris. He was unsure what was going on and was asking me what was wrong. When I replied that there was an earthquake in Japan he non chalantly told me “that happens all the time in Japan”. (Kris served a mission in Sendai) As he rolled over and went back to sleep. Knowing that there was something more to it I called my dad right away. He answered after a few rings and after getting all of the details of the quake and making sure they were all right and their missionaries were all fine I was comforted and felt they were fine. Meanwhile I had one of the cute girls from their ward staying with me so we went about our day running from place to place to place. When we got back that night that was the first time either Ryoko or I had sat down and watched the news. That is when we were shocked and horrified by what we saw.
My parents have said that they have not experienced much destruction from the quake. Most of the missionaries were in the church in a missionary training meeting with my dad. My mom was in the mission home kitchen cleaning up after feeding all of those missionaries. She was feeling like she was going to faint and sat on the floor till the swaying stopped. The missionaries stayed in the church until it stopped. My mom said the quake lasted for several minutes. I know both of my parents have wanted to help in the relief effort, but for now they have a different calling.
With the nuclear stuff happening and the evacuation of other missions my parents were called and told that the missionaries that were scheduled to leave in the next 2 transfers were already scheduled to be on flights home. They had called with the same news for the Kobe mission. Both missions were sending home missionaries early to make room for the Tokyo missionaries. The Tokyo mission was being evacuated and my parents were getting half of the missionaries and Kobe was getting the other half. 43 missionaries sent to each mission. My parents and the AP’s worked very hard at getting ready for this massive “transfer” if you will. There were about 70ish people that my mom was trying to figure out how to feed. (and with the stores being bare even in Nagoya, that was not an easy task) I know she was so grateful for all of the help she received from the ward members. These pictures were taken by one of their AP's this was all of the luggage that just went on and on and then the church cultural hall full of futons that just were everywhere. They didn't have enough room to keep all of the missionaries in the mission home but all the sisters stayed there and then I know there were several missionaries bunking with the office elders as well, one thing is for sure... they were packed to the hilt!
For now my parents are doing well. They do get the aftershocks here and there, some bigger than others, but they are in a safe area and are thrilled with their new missionaries, I know they were sad to see their other missionaries leave and I know that their missionaries were sad to leave. You can see more of the story from 3 of their missionaries here. There is also another story from one of their missionaries from Australia that you can read here.
I know that all of my siblings and I have felt your love and prayers. Thank you to all of you for the sweet thoughts we have received though phone calls, text, facebook, and email. We have felt the comforting power of the spirit while my parents are far away and not being with them and being able to help where they have needed the help. Thanks for your prayers. We feel blessed everyday to have them serving were they are. We hear amazing stories of the faithful missionaries and members in Japan. The last conference call my parents had with Tokyo they said that though all of the missionaries have been accounted for and are safe, there are still many members of the church that are still missing or missing family members and to keep them in their prayers. We will keep all of those in our prayers. Thank you again for all of your support. It is so appreciated and we are grateful for such awesome family and friends.