Thursday, September 28, 2006

The “Other Reason” I’ve Been Busy, and the Longest RooTube Movie Ever

Grace Elliot Returns in Boring Movie 6: I Am Not a Boring Baby!

Cousins Yua-chan and Emma-chan (a.k.a Grace Elliot) Discuss Their Long Futures with Grandpa Takahashi

The Other Reason I was Busy, Namely, We Spent a Week at My In-Law’s while Taking Care of Grace’s Passport and Citizenship Card Paperwork at the Honorary Canadian Consulate in Sapporo

Yua-chan Chilling in My Brother-in-law’s Kangaroo Pouch

Grace has had some significant accomplishments over the past several weeks. At the top of the list are:
1) Having her diaper changed on a desk in the Honorary Canadian Consulate,
2) Attending her first Kazamaura Village Board of Education meeting.
3) Drinking mommy’s milk during her first Kazamaura Village Board of Education Meeting (mommy is one of the four voting board members),
4) Grunting, burping and too-tooing (our family’s preferred euphemism for acts of flatulence of the posterior kind) into the administrative assistant's audio-recording device during her first Kazamaura Village Board of Education meeting.
Actually, I suppose that’s only four significant accomplishments, and three of them were related to each other. Nevertheless, we feel that she is an accomplished baby.

Boring Movie 6: I Am Not a Boring Baby!

3 min 9 sec

Monday, September 25, 2006

A Brief Introduction to My Current Academic Endeavours, and Other Excuses for not Updating Lately

Busy Hitting the Books at My In-laws’ Place in Hokkaido

Now that I have lost all my readers (again) through gross negligence (again), I am finally getting around to giving an account of myself. Life is becoming busy. This is by no means a new experience for me, since I was extremely busy between the ages of 13 and 21, but I have grown rather soft in the years since then, not withstanding a hellish summer in 2002 at Gagetown, New Brunswick (my platoon commanders’ course). To be honest, Yuko bears the brunt of the labour involving our (not-so) newborn Grace but when it comes to my studies I’m on my own. This year I am not only taking the last of the CLAIR/JET Programme sponsored language courses available to me, namely, the Translation and Interpretation Course, but I have also begun my seminary studies online through Wycliffe College, Toronto School of Theology, University of Toronto. Ironically, my first course as a Wycliffe (Anglican Church of Canada) seminarian is actually being offered by St. Augustine’s Seminary (Roman Catholic: Diocesan). As I wrote in my self-introduction during orientation week, I chose to take this particular course because:
“I have been encouraged by the stand I see being taken at the highest levels in the Catholic Church in this area of sexual morality at a time when many so-called mainline denominations are exchanging ‘the truth of God for a lie.’ My goal for this course is to build an intellectual and well-articulated framework for presenting and teaching Biblical doctrine on family, marriage, and sexuality.”
An added benefit of the course is the opportunity to learn firsthand Catholic doctrine and theology beyond the primary subject matter and in so doing to refresh my knowledge and understanding of all that was and is at stake in the history of the Protestant Reformation. I suppose that I ought also to be studying for Level 1 (the highest of 4 levels) of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test I will be taking on 3 December, but I will simply have to depend on my Translation and Interpretation Course to adequately prepare me for it.

As to the other reason I have been too busy to update this blog or finish work on Monkey Wars Episode I, I will save it for the next update (but the photo below should serve as a hint).

Monday, September 11, 2006

Presenting Our Daughter Grace Before the Lord ---10 September 2006, Kuroishi

As in Our Wedding, the Presiding Minister for Grace’s Dedication was My Father

Since Grace was Asleep During Her Dedication and Not Looking Her Brightest, We Offer this Alternative Image of Her in Her Brand New (and Slightly too Large) Head Covering (Aunty Mary a.k.a. Sister #3 in Background)

We used the exact same text as the one used in my own dedication service 29 years ago:

DEDICATION SERVICE

Scripture Reading: Psalm 78:1- 7

Minister: "Luke & Yuko in presenting Emma Grace to the Lord you enter into a solemn relationship with God who keeps covenant to a thousand generations. Throughout the ages godly parents have presented their children to God in dedication. You follow a noble heritage.

“Believing that this child is a gift from God, and that He shall hold you accountable for her, do you now solemnly confess it is your purpose to dedicate her to the Lord and to his service?"

Luke and Yuko: "We do."

Minister: "Will you pray with her, and for her, instruct her faithfully in the doctrines of the Christian religion; teach her to read the Word of God, to pray, and to lead a holy life; take her faithfully to the House of God to attend its services; and do all that in you lies to bring her to the knowledge of Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord?”

Luke and Yuko: "We will."

DEDICATION
“Emma Grace Elliot, I now dedicate you to God in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. May your young life be nurtured and matured under the gracious influence of the Holy Spirit. May God early call you into His Kingdom, and into His service, using you to advance His glory and hasten the coming of our Lord.”

Naturally, since the service was in Japanese we first had to put together a translation of the above text. This is the final edition that we used:

献児式
朗読:詩篇78章1−7節

牧師: ルカさんと優子さん、あなた方は、主の御前に恵真(えま)を捧げることにより、千代にわたり契約を結び続けられる神様との厳粛な関係に入ることとなります。どの時代にあっても敬虔な両親は献児式において、その子供達を神様に捧げて来ました。あながたは尊い伝統を受け継ぐのです。

牧師: この子供が神様からの賜物であるということ、また、神様がこの子供を育てる責任をあなた方に与えたということを信じる中で、今、あなた方は厳粛に、この子供を主と主の働きのために捧げることを告白しますか?

ルカと優子: はい、告白します。

牧師: あなた方はこの子供と共に祈り、また、子供のために祈り、この子供をキリスト教の教理に基づいて誠実に導き、この子供に神様の御言葉を読むこと、祈ること、そして聖なる生活を送ることを教えますか? 

ルカと優子: はい、教えます。

牧師: この子供を神の家である教会へ礼拝を捧げるために誠実に導き、また、イエスキリストは、救い主、また主であるという知識へとこの子供を導くために、あなた方の全てを通してそれを行ないますか?

ルカと優子: はい、行ないます。

献児
 エリオット恵真、私は今、あなたを父と子と聖霊の御名によって、神様にささげます。あなたの若い命が聖霊の恵み深い影響の元に育まれ、成長されますように。神様があなたを早く御国へ、更に主の働きへと召し、主があなたを通して御栄光をあらわし、また主の再臨を待ち望みつつ、用いて下さいますように。

Sunset Over Mutsu Bay and the Shimokita Peninsula

Psalm 78:1- 7

1 O my people, hear my teaching;
listen to the words of my mouth.


2 I will open my mouth in parables,
I will utter hidden things, things from of old-


3 what we have heard and known,
what our fathers have told us.


4 We will not hide them from their children;
we will tell the next generation
the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD,
his power, and the wonders he has done.


5 He decreed statutes for Jacob
and established the law in Israel,
which he commanded our forefathers
to teach their children,


6 so the next generation would know them,
even the children yet to be born,
and they in turn would tell their children.


7 Then they would put their trust in God
and would not forget his deeds
but would keep his commands.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Loving Life

When in Doubt, Smile (So far it would seem that Grace has Yuko's nose)

Fluffy White Towels are the Most Wickedawesomest Things in the World

And for those who were wondering—Grace’s feet appear to be free of the usual Elliot afflictions.

My Feet
During my platoon commanders’ course, Lukey’s Woe was cut open, raw, and bleeding for fourteen weeks straight due to anti-Elliot factions in the combat boot industry. Also, most shoes aren’t wide enough to accommodate Elliot’s Affliction, and the result is foot fatigue from the constant pressure.

“Rest in Peace” and Other Lively Games
1 min 14 sec