He's here. We greeted him at the airport. There were about 30 of us to greet him. I'm lucky Gokiso is so close to the HQ, so I could go greet him. President Yamashita and his wife seem like a delight. We have a Zone Conference this Friday to meet them officially. I'm excited to see the changes over the next couple of months.
We had some great successes this past week. Three investigators came to church! A man from Uganda named David was able to come this week. He loves the church and knows it's true, he just has visa problems that prevent him from getting baptized. We visited him on Friday night and met his member girlfriend, Barbie, for the first time. She has been a member for twenty years. I asked if she would be at church on Sunday and she said yes. The I asked David and he said he would try to come. I told him if he really wants to go and he asks Heavenly Father to help him out, then he would be able to go to church. And then he came to church! It was an awesome miracle.
One of our newer investigators, Miwa Yuta Kyodai, came to church as well. He came to Sacrament, Sunday School, and then we had a lesson with him during the third hour. Bishop Keikyu was in our lesson and he helped answer Yuta Kyodai's questions about repentance. It was also really cool how we were able to answer his other questions with the Book of Mormon. He asked how we can know good from evil and also if we are born in sin. We were able to read with and expound to him Moroni 7 and 8. He left church satisfied and looking forward to our next meeting.
Ito Megumi Shimai came to church for the second time in a row and the third time in her life. She is really enjoying Sacrament meeting and I think that will be the key to help her finally be baptized. She has plans to come to church next week and we meet with her on Wednesday. The other Gokiso Elders also have a baptism coming up and Megumi Shimai really wants to see a baptism. Roney Choro and I have the "Now's the time" feeling about her.
We found a new investigator last Wednesday named Mibu Kyodai. He had met missionaries before and said that they taught him the word, "cool." We set an appointment for Saturday, but he cancelled. We are planning to go see him later this week, but he will call us.
Elder Roney and I have fallen in love with OYM on trains. We ride trains a fair amount as Zone Leaders, so we get a lot of opportunity to train dendo. We talked to a lot of people this past week and got a man's phone number. Later that day when I was on a companion exchange with Elder Baird (cool name, right?) we talked to every person we could. We pulled up next to a man at a light and he pulled out his headphones when he saw us. I complemented his cool bike and we started talking. The light changed so we could cross the street, but we just rode next to each other and kept talking. He gave us his phone number so we can meet again sometime. Then on the way home later that night a British man named Danny stopped us on the corner and asked us why we were in Japan. We found out he is Protestant and he doesn't have a church to go to. He asked if there are Mormons in the UK and I was like, "My dad went on a mission there thirty years ago." It was pretty cool to just stand on the street corner and teach him the Gospel. He wasn't able to make it to church yesterday, but we have his phone number and we gave him a pamphlet, so we can follow up with him.
I'm sure you heard about the changes coming to the missionary world. We have no idea how fast our mission will change, but I assume at least iPhones and iPads will be pretty quick. I loved the broadcast that the church had about missionary work. I really wish every member in Japan had seen it though. The only way the church is gonna get some real steam behind it in Japan is through the members. Normal dendo works, but it's not nearly as effective as member missionaries. I'm excited for the new chapter of missionary work.
We met an interesting Japanese man at the airport on Saturday. Okay, he was a Japanese redneck. He came to Nagoya to see the boat race and his dad is an amateur boat driver. His sons are named Shoto and Hito, the Japanese words used for shortstop and hitter in Baseball. He took a picture with all thirty of us before he left and his family bought some Elders dinner. It was a neat experience for all parties. Hopefully he goes back home and meets some missionaries. The other Gokiso Elders did get his number, so they can refer him.
I have been honing my ping pong skills with Elder Roney. He's way good at ping pong and we have a ping pong activity every Saturday. My goal is to beat Bubba at ping pong before I leave Gokiso. Heh heh heh.
Well it was a little sad to say goodbye to the Bairds, but the windshield is bigger than the rear view mirror. Those are President Baird's paraphrased words. Here we go. Thanks for the love and prayers. Love you all.