In 2011-2014, Hideyoshi (Dede) Kashiwagura planted a church in Japan. He was also sent to a Japanese Church in Melbourne, Australia from 2015 to 2019. It was such a fruitful experience to serve for a Japanese church in Australia not only for him but also for his wife, Haruka, and their four children. The Lord surely blessed him!
Time in Australia made the family grow, and Dede expanded his ministry area outside of the Church. He organized MJCN (Melbourne Japanese Christian Network) and J²ANZ (Jesus for Japanese in Australia and New Zealand). J²ANZ had 45 members in 2017 and grew as big as over 200 Japanese members in 2018. They gathered at the Annual Conference from Australia and New Zealand in 2018 – it was the first conference in the history for Japanese Christians who live in Southern Hemisphere. Dede thinks those people are now experiencing something like a revival.
While Dede and Haruka were praying for the next step, they were able to connect with Missions Door in 2019. Missions Door was officially appointed Dede as a Church Planter in San Diego in 2021 – 13 years after he received God’s Call to plant a Japanese Church in San Diego. Dede proclaims that Lord is the true to His promises.
About 60,000 Japanese live in San Diego, and Dede’s vision is that all will hear the Gospel.
The Japanese are among most distant people groups from the Gospel in the world. About 60,000 Japanese live in San Diego, and Dede’s vision is that all will hear the Gospel through the work of the Lord in his ministry.
In 1998, Hideyoshi (Dede) Kashiwagura went to San Diego for Agricultural Training. On April 2, 1999, he was baptized at Bonita Japanese Bible Church. Soon after that, he came back to Japan and entered a seminary school to be a Pastor. After the seminary graduation, he had a call from Rev. Nakamura of Bonita Japanese Bible Church to do missionary work together in San Diego. He told Dede, “If you were to come to San Diego, you must confirm your Calling from God.”
Dede was hesitant at the beginning because he did not think he would be capable enough to pastor overseas; however, Ephesians 4:11, (“So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers”) showed him that it doesn’t matter about one’s ability, but it is Christ Himself who gives. So, Dede said “I do if Christ gives.”
Dede also refers to Mark 16:7, which says: “But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’” Dede wondered why Jesus told His disciples to go to Galilee after His resurrection when the disciples were in Jerusalem. Then he remembered that Galilee is the place the disciples first met Jesus. For him, the place he first met his Savior Jesus Christ was San Diego. Those two verses, Ephesians 4:11 and Mark 16:7, along with other bible verses made him sure that the Lord has called him to San Diego. In 2008, Dede started to prepare to move to the U.S.; but God had another plan. He could not move to San Diego at that time. Since then, Dede and his wife had been praying for God’s plan… for 13 years. Then the Lord brought them to Missions Door.
After returning to Japan, Dede met Haruka at an English conversation class at a church. Haruka knew about the class from her Christian friend and was led to faith through that. They got married in 2006 and now have four children, Naoto, Megumi, Yuki, and Amy (Eimi).
Bachelors of Agriculture Economy, Tokyo University of Agriculture
Japan Bible Seminary (Seisho Senkyokai – Seisho Shingakusha)
Revival Biblical Seminary