Know God. Make Him known to the Japanese.

Who We Are

A Global Movement

Who We Are

Youth With A Mission is a global movement of Christians from many cultures, age groups and Christian traditions, dedicated to serving Jesus throughout the world.

Also known as YWAM (pronounced “WHY-wham”), we unite in a common purpose to know God and to make Him known.

Back when we began in 1960, our main focus was to help youth get involved in missions.

Today, we still focus on youth and we also include people of all ages. We currently have tens of thousands of staff (called “YWAMers”) from nearly every country, including places like Indonesia, Nepal, Mozambique, and Colombia.

We have been making waves here in Japan since 1975, starting in Osaka. We have since expanded all over Japan.

God is calling people from many countries to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to Japanese people and to raise up the Japanese people for His glory and honour and give them His gifts to spread the gospel in various ways.

Seeking Spiritual Fruit

Why Sendai?

Tohoku (North-East Japan) is a large and beautiful rural region that is known for its delicious fruit. Yet this region is home to few Christians. There are many towns and villages here with no church or missionary presence. We desire this region to bare much spiritual fruit! In Japan, and this region in particular, Jesus’ words definitely ring true. The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. (Matthew 9.37)

Tohoku was also hit by the major 2011 earthquakes and tsunami which killed around 18,000 people and destroyed whole towns and cities along the coast. Today, the people have rebuilt their lives, but it will take generations for the sense of loss and pain felt by the people here to disappear.

Becoming Japanese

Seeking authentic Japanese Christianity

Japanese identity is deeply entangled with Shinto and Buddhist culture and customs. Christianity often looks and feels Western, so the Japanese tend to view it as being a “Western religion”. Its common to hear someone say “I really like Jesus, but I am Japanese.” For the gospel to truly take root in Japan, we need to communicate the gospel in a Japanese way.

Here at YWAM Sendai, we strongly believe that in order to see a true revival of Christianity in Japan, we need to communicate the Gospel in a way the Japanese understand. Because of this, it is essential we learn the Japanese culture and language. If we really want to reach the Japanese, we need to become like the Japanese. (see 1 Cor. 9.20)

We also desire to creatively explore ways in which we can express Christian worship in authentically Japanese ways: whether in music, art, writing, symbolism, nature, or prayer.


What We Do


We believe everyone has the right to hear the good news about Jesus and our prayer is to see fellowships of believers worshipping and following Jesus in every nation, tribe and tongue.

Over 99% of the people in Tohoku do not know Jesus. We seek the creativity of the Holy Spirit in order to share the gospel – especially by simply sharing our lives with people.


YWAM’s introductory course, the Discipleship Training School (YWAM DTS), is offered in many nations and languages. It’s an intensive six months of growing more like Jesus and serving Him in the world.

We desire to train and equip the Japanese to reach their own people and to go into all the nations! We would love to have a bilingual DTS ran in Sendai, as well as other training and equipping programmes.


YWAM’s mercy ministry teams follow Jesus’ example of compassion to those in need. We operate relief and development programs in over 100 countries, working among people living in desperate circumstances.

Although Japan is a wealthy nation, there are many areas of need in society such as depression, loneliness, suicide and homelessness. We want to play a part in bringing hope and joy to the Japanese!

Wave Makers

Our Founders & Elders

Loren and Darlene
Loren and Darlene

“Loren and Darlene, through their obedience to the Lord, have transformed the global mission movement. Their actions directly affected countless lives from every nation!” - Rev. Leonard Ravenhill

YWAM was founded by Loren Cunningham in 1960 after God gave him a vision of waves of young people crashing onto the shores of all nations of the world with the Gospel. Loren also co-founded the University of the Nations in 1978 in order to better train and equip people for missions. As YWAM is a decentralised mission with no global headquarters, Loren and his wife Darlene make up part of YWAM’s Founders’ Circle overseeing the mission and pointing YWAMers across the world back to Jesus.

Know God and Make Him Known

Our Purpose, Beliefs and Values

The combination of this purpose, beliefs and values makes up the unique family characteristics of YWAM—our “DNA.” They are the framework we hold in high regard for they help us determine who we are, how we live and how we make decisions.

Our Purpose, Beliefs and Values >