We are Dean and Sue Zemke, missionaries to Japan since 1996. After three years of language training, we moved to Asahikawa, where we ministered for 22 years. In 2022, we moved to Sapporo and are working with a Japanese pastor and his wife at Sapporo Bible Baptist Church, combining efforts to grow this work to a self-supporting status. We have three adult children in the United States. Our web site is zemkedesu.com.
Japan is an archipelago of over six thousand islands. The four largest are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku, which make up about ninety-seven percent of Japan's land area. Our city of Sapporo, with a population of two million, is the largest city on Japan's northernmost main island of Hokkaido and the fifth largest city in Japan. Shinto and Buddhism are Japan's two major religions. Shinto is as old as the Japanese culture, while Buddhism was imported in the sixth century. Since then, the two religions have been coexisting relatively harmoniously and have even complemented each other to a certain degree. Fewer than one percent of the population claims Christian beliefs or affiliation.