Thursday, October 8, 2009

Typhoon Slams Mission - A Little Wet, But Safe

Last night about 3am a large scale typhoon made landfall in southern Wakayama near Shingu and Tanabe. The storm affected the whole mission and stretched from the Pacific across the mission to the Sea of Japan. Damage has been reported in most communities throughout the mission (and in many parts of Japan), but all the missionaries are safe. I was traveling with the assistants to do interviews in Tanabe and Shingu that day (in Wakayama). We knew the storm was coming and was scheduled to hit in the middle of the night. It was raining pretty good by the time we arrived in Tanabe. After the interviews there, we drove to Shingu as the rain and winds picked up. I did interviews that night in Shingu and we ate dinner with the elders there. The assistants stayed with the Shingu elders in the apartment and I stayed in a nearby business hotel. Sleep was difficult as the wind and rain beat on the buildings. The power went out at one point and roads were closed. Shingu is only a few miles from Kushimoto which took a direct hit as the storm made landfall. By morning the storm had blown through and the sky was a beautiful blue. Shingu church, however, was flooded and part of the roof of the building was torn off. The missionaries live in the same building but were fine. The carpet and wall in the church will need to be replaced. Back in Kobe the sisters lost some pieces of their balcony and some of the shrubs near the mission office were uprooted. Other than that we can see signs of the storm all around the mission. Since it hit at night however, all the missionaries were warm and safe inside. A benefit of the storm, the drive back to Kobe via the coast of Wakayama was one of the most beautiful trips I have taken. The ocean and sky were crystal clear.Picture of the Tanabe elders and the assistants after interviews.

Shingu elders and assistants in Shingu after we had a meeting together.Photo opportunity on the way home in Kushimoto. We bought some mikans from a vendor near here who said the storm tore the roof off his home which is right across the street from where we took this picture. No sign of the storm when we too this shot though. The Nagoya Mission also took a big hit from the storm and then it moved on towards Tokyo and beyond.


Glenn Hinton said...

Thanks for letting us know all are fine there after the Typhoon.

Riley said...

Elder Payne is my brother, and he was pretty disappointed the typhoon was so calm. But that's typical Casey. :)

Thanks for the update! I love seeing all the pictures of the missionaries.