Monday, July 19, 2004

Pastor Murai and his wife and family have been a source of great encouragement to me during my last two years in Toronto. There situation is virtually the mirror image of my own family. My family moved to Japan to serve local churches there when I was a toddler and my next down sister was an infant. The Murai's came to North America to serve expatriate Japanese congregations when their oldest son Toru was a toddler and their next down daughter Shizuka was an infant. Both families subsequently added three children to their number. It is a significant point of difference between the two nations that the Murai's three youngest received Canadian citizenship and completely integrated into Canadian society, whereas my own three youngest sisters are not eligible for citizenship (or even special consideration) in the land of their birth, and are faced with the choice of remaining in Japan as foreigners or attempting to start a new life in Canada where they will have the rights and privileges of citizens. Socio-political anecdotes aside, the Elliot-Murai mirror imaging is not only fascinating, it has served as an interface between my foreignness and my nativeness here in Canada.