Monday, February 25, 2013

It's Been a Year?!

Dear Kazoku,

That means family. It doesn't feel like it's been a year at all. Now that I'm past the year mark by a few days it has set in a little more that I'm on the "downhill" slope of my mission. I put quotes on "downhill" because I want to improve everything as I get closer and closer to going home. Japanese, finding, teaching, working with members, etc.

 I had no idea that so many new missions were being formed. Nagoya mission's boundaries will not be affected at all by the creation of the Tokyo South mission, so I'll gratefully be a Nagoya missionary until I die. You heard about our new mission president too. Elder Yamashita is actually a member of the Seventy and he will be serving for only two years. But how cool is that?! Our mission President is going to be a Seventy! And he's Nihonjin!

I was on a companionship exchange with Elder Roney when we got the news about the new President and stuff. Elder Roney and I were agreeing that every new missionary went "Shoot." when Roney Choro and I went "SICK!" Japan Nagoya mission is gonna be pera pera (fluent) quick. Roney Choro and I had a fun exchange even though we had a little bump in the plans due to an umbrella getting caught in the spokes of Elder Roney's bike. But we managed to visit a less-active member, Ohashi Kyodai, before the day was done. Ohashi Kyodai has been coming to church a lot recently. He is progressing well.

My companion and I invited Ogasawara-san to baptism this week. She said she doesn't want to join the church, but if anything else, it helped us understand her situation and needs better. She also is praying every day this week and reading the Book of Mormon. Our lessons with Ouchi-san have been very good lately. He has been studying the doctrine very diligently and is committed to pray everyday to know if the church is true. We found another new investigator through 10x this week and we will visit her on Tuesday.

I had a really cool experience with Haseruka-kun this week. A little background info: he is probably 15 years old and when we found him, he said he is a little interested. We thought "Even a little is enough." We weren't able to meet him last week, so we just went to his house without an appointment. He answered the door and let us come in. We asked him if he read the pamphlet we gave him and he said that he liked it. It kind of surprised me. I ended up sharing a scripture about the purpose of life with him from the Book of Mormon (Alma 34:32) and gave him the Book of Mormon. He committed to read it and we got a return appointment. I tell ya, sometimes God is just too good. I believe God has prepared Haseruka-kun. I believe God is preparing the world.

Back to the note of General Authorities, we have an all-mission conference this Friday. Elder Tad R. Callister will be speaking. The mission is buzzing. I really feel like Heavenly Father just brought down some Gospel heat! I was talking to my companion recently about how Japan will probably be six missions for a while and then like three days later I get word of Tokyo splitting. cray cray!

We are part of the Lord's Kingdom. It's sweeping the earth and the hearts of men are being softened. This is the best thing that anyone can do for our Father in Heaven. You don't even need an official call to do it either! The Gospel is true and living and Heavenly Father loves His children.

Keep the faith and may the Force be with you.


Elder Sanderson

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting

Hey everyone!

It's email time again! This week was good. We had to go to Nagoya again for trainer training. I am now on my second transfer with Tsukamoto Choro, but this transfer is only four weeks so we have no idea what's gonna happen at transfers in March.

We found another new investigator! Woohoo! His name is Takayama-san. The work is picking up pace for sure. We got an email from the Mission office saying that 45 missionaries are currently assigned to come to the Japan Nagoya mission and that doesn't include the Nihonjin who will be assigned as well. In June and July we are supposed to get 30 new missionaries. It's gonna be crazy!

We are headed to a matsuri (festival) today, if the weather is good. It is for the Daruma. He was an old Indian Monk that came to Japan a long time ago and Japanese people use his totem to bring luck, health, fortune, love, etc. to their lives. It happens every year near the beginning of the year. We are going for a district activity! It's going to be fun!

Lately we have been teaching a woman named Ogasawara-san a lot. We meet every week and she is receiving our message well. She is very Buddhist and doesn't want to join the church right now, but she reads the Book of Mormon and prays. We showed her the Restoration DVD last visit and it was really good for her.

We also have been meeting with Wada-san every week. She lives with her boyfriend and has a ton of interest in the gospel. She is our Kinjin (literally translated "Gold Person," means golden investigator). She just says yes to everything we say and has interest in coming to church. We gave her a Book of Mormon this past Thursday and she's gonna read it. I tell you what, God is great.

There is a member in our ward here that is going on his mission in March. We get to dendo with him sometimes. He came to two of our lessons on Saturday night and they went really well. One was with our eternal investigator, Ouchi-san and the other was with Otsuka-san. Being a missionary is awesome.

This week I was reading in the LDS Addiction Recovery Program about counseling with the Lord rather than counseling the Lord. In other words, confirming your actions with the Lord instead of telling him what you want or what you are going to do. I made an effort to really apply those principles this week. It has been amazing to see the difference of the guidance of the Holy Spirit in my life. That was something cool I thought I should share.

Well, tata for now!


Elder Sanderson

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Earth, Wind, and Dendo Fire


This week was great. We found two new investigators! My companion and I didn't want to 10x after visiting Ouchi-san, but we knew that meant that we should. We set some goals, said a prayer, and the first two doors became new investigators! God is great! One is a boy in junior high named Haseruka-kun and the other is a middle-aged man named Otsuki-san. Otsuki-san is actually a former investigator that moved and lost contact with the missionaries. It was a literal miracle that we found him!

I conducted a companionship exchange with Elder Perkins last week. It was really fun to be in Fuji together again. We were able to visit some investigators that hadn't been contacted since he left and now they are back in "the loop". We also had a good lesson with Inaba-san. He still wants to be baptized but his goal for the 17th of Feb kind of disappeared. He is super busy lately and we can't meet with him again until March. I asked him if he thinks the Gospel is important and he said, "Yappari, taisetsu desu ne." (Ya, it's important, isn't it?) I guess we just have to help him feel the importance a little more.

We had Zone Conference and found out we'll be having another mission conference in March with Elder Tad R. Callister and Elder Koichi Aoyagi of the Seventy. It's gonna be hot!

Today is my one-year-to-death day! Whoa! Where did that year go? We had transfer calls today, but no one in my district is transferring. Sister Hunt is going home tomorrow, but other than that it's just us six still. Hooray! Transfers are crazy sometimes.

So looks like things don't stop changing. I was stalking Elder Beau Sanderson's blog and saw he dropped some weight and looks down right studly now. That's what missions will do to ya, folks. Look at Evan. What, three months and engaged? Tell me that's not the Lord's work.

OK, ja, Bye bye!


Elder Sanderson

Nosredsan Redle

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Red 5 Reporting In

Things change super fast! This past week went by fast, but looking back it seems like the span of a year. We had an emergency transfer in our district. An emergency transfer happens when companions don't get along, so they switch things around. The only person who transferred out was Prestwich Choro in Numazu. But I did an exchange with him on Tuesday, so it feels really weird that he transferred. This transfer's urgency wasn't as bad as some have been, but President Baird gave the okay on it, so stuff changed a lot. Prestwich Choro went to Nakatsugawa, Gillespie Choro went to Kasugai, Parra Choro went to Toyota, and Perkins Choro came to Numazu!! Perkins Choro is in my district!!!!!! Wooohooo, Yeah buddy!!!! I'm so stoked!!! Yesss!!!

This week was great. We got two new investigators. One, Watanabe-san, is a referral from Numazu. She has been taking discussions for about a month or so, but she lives in Fuji so switched to us. We had three lessons with her and she came to all three meetings of Church! The other new investigator is named Wada-san. Totally prepared for the Gospel. I asked her at her door if she ever wondered what the purpose of life was and she's like, "Ya, but I didn't find an answer." So we have an appointment to talk with her about that on Thursday. Things with Inaba-san have unfortunately slowed down since he set a bapt date, but we have another appointment on Saturday. Ouchi-san and Ogasawara-san are doing well and we're working on our other investigators.

So, I hear it's Super Bowl Sunday. I guess I'm gonna have to choose a side, huh? 49ers for old time's sake.

Well, this week will be good. My companion and I are making dinner for a member, a less active, and her potential-investigator boyfriend. We're having katsu curry with some fruit and strawberry parfait for dessert. It's gonna be sick. In other news, this week is Zone Conference. I'll get to see all my old district from back in Nagoya East zone. Well that's it for this week. Bye bye.


Elder Sanderson

P.S.  It was so warm this week. I wore short sleeves! It reached into the 20s! celcius, of course