Sunday, October 25, 2015

Weekly 400 houses & 400 mouses Mail

This week it was my companions turn to be sick, but we're up and ready to go now!

Sunday's have become my favourite day, I'm so thankful to my parents for helping me to build the habit of going to Church every week because I can see so clearly how much of a benefit it has been to me!
It was great sitting with Brother Kawahira and sustaining him along with the rest of the ward to receiving he Aaronic Priesthood. I say "it was great" but of course I'm a lot happier about it than I can express over e-mail haha.

Another companion exchange, and it was a really humbling experience because I guess I kind of remembered that I can't do anything without relying on God. My Japanese or teaching skills aren't as good as I thought they were, but I am getting somewhere with my cooking! This week was Mexican food. Stay tuned to find out what next week will be!

Photos: Dinner with the Furugen's and our investigator Yasuha. He smiles a lot more in real life, trust me. Also a snap shot from our moving project - typical me, standing to the side taking photos instead of getting dirty haha.
By the way when old mate AB got his mission call to England I 爆発しそうになった!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Weekly Fully Sick Mail

I was sick so I got straight pera from studying Kanji all day. Had two companion exchanges that were way fun though. Probably got a lot of people sick from it.

Speaking of sick, Motoko-San dropped us because her sickness is back and because of it she doesn't think she can come to Church after her previously scheduled Baptism, it was pretty disappointing but we left a note for 3 months later for future missionaries to go visit her. I can't imagine her forgetting the experiences she's had with the Book of Mormon, with prayer or with Church so I will continue to pray for her, but there's only so much you can do for someone.

We have a bunch of other investigators that the members are all about helping and serving, the Okinawan members' examples are some of the things from my mission I hope to emulate and never forget. Very grateful.

Planes and jets from the Military base have been going off all day every day and I don't watch the news nor can I read Newspaper-level-Japanese (don't even get me started) but is World War
3 going on or something?

I didn't take any photos this week so I took a photo with my companion just now. He is good. I didn't blink.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Weekly 焦げた Brownies Mail

Eventful week! We held a Zone Training Meeting and it was the most fun I'd had with one yet. Our Transfer theme is "Become Missionaries Trusted by God."
We have a pretty big teaching pool - all Japanese investigators, with a few Baptisimal dates we are helping people working towards.
Motoko-San, who we have been meeting for about a month now, quit smoking and shared an experience she had when reading the Book of Mormon that brought her to tears. I wish you could all meet her and everyone else here, I really love the Okinawan people.
Companion exchanges, general conference, lots of lessons, just overall I'm really happy to be doing this right now. It's strange how little I think of myself, I'm constantly finding myself thinking about nothing but our investigators and members. Not perfect yet though - how many missionaries does it take to make a tray of brownies for the awesome members who do so much to help our investigators? Four, but it still gets over-baked. It's the thought that counts though, right?

Photos: Ginowan Zone, and some good statues (minutes before our haircut, I swear I'm not a hooligan)

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Weekly Kawahira Mail

Elder Urata and I are the oldest companionship in the mission.
Slightly daunting. We have been speaking two hours of English and two hours of Japanese on and off this week, we finally found a way to help each other learn and not just help ourselves.

Went to Missionary Leader Council in Fukuoka, and seeing that city made me a little trunky for mainland Japan - it looks a lot different to Okinawa where everything is made of concrete to withstand typhoons.

Motoko came to Church again and we have organised all the days we are going to teach her before her baptism on the 31st so she is excited for that as are we! We have a friend called Yuri who is a high school student, Elder Urata and I met her while tracting and she has been coming to Eikaiwa so I invited her to Church and she came with three other friends. It was all their first time but it was pretty fun explaining to them everything as we went along - prayers, hymns, sacrament, the topics people were talking about.

Last Saturday we visited a potential investigator who we asked to read Lehi's Vision in the Book of Mormon, and when we asked her how it was she started describing to us about this warm feeling that she had never felt while reading a book before, and that she could hardly explain it! Luckily, we could explain it. She believes that it could very well be God pointing her in the right direction, telling her that this is good.

We taught Kawahira every day and he was baptized on Thursday. The day itself was full-on, interviews with Mission President, two trainings from the Assistants which I translated for the Japanese missionaries (that's four hours of on-the-spot translating, someone give me a medal), the baptism which President and the APs stayed for, and then Eikaiwa. Really fulfilling day! Lots of people came to the Baptism, the Bishopric did a great job of being on top of it all - could never imagine a Baptismal service going that smoothly if I were the one to organise it. Kawahira brought his family who aren't members, he was a little nervous about it all, but after the ordinance he shared his testimony and oh my goodness, his testimony is incredible! He is doing all of this because he feels it is right, because he can tell the difference in his life and in the life of others who live the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and because he wants to be a good example to his son.
Wish you could all have been there! So many people's prayers were answered that day. On Sunday I participated in the confirmation, and he just couldn't stop smiling all day - it was so great to see!

My mission is worth it because of the incredible experiences I have been a part of, the incredible changes I see in people's lives, and the incredible growth I have seen in my own life. These last few weeks have easily been the best so far. My mission changed a few weeks ago, even our Mission President recognized it and told me how happy he was for me, while chastising me like nothing else for not changing like I had earlier haha!! My mission president is perfect for me, and I have seen how the Japan Fukuoka Mission is perfect for me too.

Photo: Elder Moe & Elder Inagaki at MLC, Kawahira before his baptism, shakeys and a Shisa.