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Donnie and Ruth McDonald


Meet the McDonalds, IM Missionaries to Japan

Donnie and Ruth McDonald have been living and ministering in Japan since 1986. They have been involved in planting churches on both the northern island of Hokkaido and in the greater Tokyo area, where they currently serve.

The McDonalds raised four children in Japan but are now empty nesters. Three of their children live in the US, and their daughter Kate and her husband Daniel Speer serve with IM, Inc. as church planters in Sapporo, Hokkaido.

Donnie and Ruth provide leadership for the Good News Chapel in the greater Tokyo area. Their responsibilities include preaching, leading Bible studies, and spearheading a variety of evangelistic outreaches. They also serve as the Japan Field Leaders, a role that involves providing logistical help and encouragement to the 24 IM, Inc. missionaries serving in Japan.

Some of their favorite things about Japan include the food, the baths, and the Seibu Lions baseball team.

Why Japan?

We enjoy Japan’s safe and modern society with its excellent educational opportunities and amazing technological advances. However, we also know all too well that Japan is a spiritually dark nation.

Most Japanese people do not know a Christian, and only about 0.5% of the population claim Christianity as their faith. Sometimes people ask us if there are any unreached people groups in Japan, to which we reply: Japan IS an unreached people group! As a matter of fact, Japan is the second-largest unreached population in the world.

The traditional religions of Japan are Buddhism and Shinto, but many people identify as atheists. Many Japanese struggle with emotional and mental health issues. Cultural pressure to act strong and ignore real struggles contributes to an alarmingly high suicide rate.

As we share the hope of the Gospel, we find an openness across age groups. Through preaching, Bible studies, hospitality, and various events, we are seeing the power of Jesus change individuals and families.

24 Unreached People Groups in Japan

Good News Chapel IMpact Project

Learn more about the Good News Chapel church plant in Japan and how you can be a part of the ministries taking place by giving. The McDonalds and IM Missionaries in Japan need YOUR help to raise money for a new building that is larger and to have a place they can call their own.

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How they are ministering to people in Japan

How you can pray for the McDonalds

  • Praise God for several seekers who are studying the Bible with Ruth via Zoom. These ladies began in Genesis and have been “good soil,” soaking up the truths of Scripture. As 2021 comes to a close, they have made their way to the study of Jesus’ death and resurrection. Please pray that they will take the definite step of faith and follow the Lord in baptism soon.
  • Pray for the McDonalds as they are currently shouldering the church plant by themselves. Missionary Shannon Little is in the U.S. for a one-year Stateside Assignment and Japanese co-worker Etsuko Asahi is taking a leave of absence due to a series of family hardships.
  • Pray that God would bring in funds for the purchase of a permanent property for Good News Chapel. As Shannon Little travels, she is presenting the IMPact Project with the goal of raising $350 thousand toward this vision.
  • Praise God for the faithfulness and excitement of the church members who are thankful to be meeting in person after several declared State of Emergency periods that prohibited doing so. Pray for them as they continue to share their faith with their families, friends, and co-workers. Most of them are the sole believer in their sphere of influence.
  • Pray for Donnie as he serves as Japan Field Leader. Ask God to give him wisdom and discernment as he provides leadership, encouragement, and logistical help to the 24 adults and 25 children in Japan with IM, Inc.


Total population of Japan



You can partner with Donnie and Ruth to reach people in Japan with the Gospel.

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