Ben Salem United Church of Christ - Lehighton, PA
Global Ministries Missionary Relationship
Jeffrey Mensendiek, Japan
Jeffrey's blog
Ben Salem UCC has been in relationship with Jeffrey since Aug. 2006.  Rev. Mensendiek has served with Global Ministries for 19 years.  He serves with the Council on Cooperative Mission, assigned to the Emmaus Center in Sendai, Japan where he is the director of youth ministries.  He grew up in Japan, the son of missionaries.  He married Kazuko Ikawa on July 20, 1998.  They have three children, Hana, born October 19, 1999, Tomo, born Spetember 17, 2001, and Stella, born on December 25, 2006. 
We had the pleasure of finally meeting Jeffrey when he visited Ben Salem on April 22, 2008 while he was in the United States. 
Please keep Jeffrey, his family, his work, and the people of Japan in your prayers.
EMAIL FROM JEFFREY:  December 28-2010
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!                                     December 25, 2010
   It is snowing outside, and the kids are making a large snow fortress in the back yard. It’s also Stella’s fourth birthday today, and we are having a quiet day at home, which means a lot of commotion over presents and or the energy of the kids playing in the snow!
   Highlights of our year were 1) skiing the first three months of the year, 2) Stella entering kindergarten in the spring, 3) the wind orchestra concert this monthr in which Hana played the flute and Tomo the trumpet, 4) hosting friends from Bangladesh and then Taiwan, 5) church activities for the kids, 6) and the great hike up Mt. Myoko (2445 meters) in the summer! Hana, Tomo and Jeffrey ended up hiking for close to twelve hours but we did make it to the top and back!!
   The most important segment of the year was to sprinkle my father’s ashes in several of the spots which he loved so much in Nojiri and Sendai. My mother and sisters were together with the family the whole month of August. How often we returned to the fundamental realization that “if it wasn’t for Bill’s adventurous spirit we would not be where we are today.” It was a year of memories and thanksgiving, for a life that bridged cultures.
We wish you the best in this new year – the year of the rabbit.    
Jeffrey, Kako, Hana, Tomo & Stella
EMAIL FROM JEFFREY:  Sunday, Feb. 14th
Just for now I want to let you know that I will be traveling with five university students to Bangladesh for three weeks starting Feb. 24. This program to south Asia is something we do every year. It's sort of like a pilgrimage to meet both God and neighbor. We will be staying with the Taize brothers, learning about the Bengali culture and people. We wil have homestays with the adivasi (tribal) people, and have a chance to see how faith is put into action to serve those in need. We will also have opportunities to interact with people of the Muslim and Hindu faiths, to see the way the Taize brothers have built trust with them. If you haven't heard of Taize you can find it through the internet. Its a religious community that is doing much to build peace and reconciliation around the world. Blessings to you!
For more information, please visit Jeffrey on the Global Ministries website.