Saturday, September 17, 2016

Lots of Lasts

I have not been good at posting Alex's letters the last couple of weeks and breaking my computer didn't help. Here are his letters from the last 2 weeks.

To Everyone:
Sep 11 -- Last transfer call, last area, last companion, last transfer. Has it seriously been two years already?
Scripture of the week is 3 Nephi 16:13, "But if the Gentiles will
repent and return unto me, saith the Father, behold they shall be
numbered among my people, O house of Israel."
Kanji of the week is: 喉頭炎 pronounced "koh-toe-en" and means laryngitis.
Monday was good, but nothing happened in the evening except for travel.
Tuesday was splits with Elder Livermore. He is a great guy, and is an awesome missionary. We housed a lot, and got not a lot of results. We did make a woman's day by commenting on her hair, and got told through an intercom to go away by a very angry and smart dog, so it was a good day. In the evening, we went an visited a family who's eight year old son just got baptized last month. We stopped by real quick to say hi, and to pray with them so that we could see success. The amazing thing is, that those few hours were more filled with events than the who rest of they day. God truly answers prayers. We even found a new investigator.
Wednesday we got back, studied, went to a members house for family home evening like usual, and then had English class.
Thursday was district meeting, and that was very spiritual. We had a
good training by our district leader, who left his departing words of
wisdom for us. (He goes home this week). I can't remember too much after that. We met with an investigator in the evening, and that was great. He's a good kid, and focused really well.
Friday we did weekly planning, and then once again my memory is fuzzy. In the evening, we met with an investigator (he came to church again this week!)
Saturday was mostly spent at a festival. We tried talking with people,
but not with too much luck. It was good for others to see us and have the open spirit to talk with us since it was a festival. We also saw a less active, who was doing announcing on one of the floats. I say floats, but they were like portable shrines. I forget what they're
called in Japanese. In the evening, we had English class. It was fun,
but my voice was really struggling. By the end of the night, my voice
was gone. (For those of you who have been following me for two years, I think it was the same thing that got me when I was in the MTC and couldn't talk).
Sunday was really great, because we had lots of people at church from all over the district (church district(like a stake), not missionary
district). I even saw some people from Hachinohe. I didn't have a
voice, but they all knew Japanese sign language, so we were still able to communicate. I am so glad that God helped me with that, because everything was so perfect. I lost my voice right when there were people who could still understand me that came to church. We also had a luncheon after church, and then a fireside that had to do with family history.
The rest of the night was studies, and packing. That's right, we got
the transfer call. I am staying in Odate, but my beloved companion
Elder H is going to go to Morioka. My new companion will be a 
Elder P. He is from Tokyo. He lived in tokyo for most of his life,
but he is not Japanese. He knows both languages, and a great person, from what I've heard.
I hope that you all had a great week. I pray that you will stay safe,
and that you will see God's influence in your lives.

Sept 4 -- This week was really great. I really learned a lot about how much
happiness can come to you from seeing others progress in their
testimonies and in a knowledge of the Gospel. We had an investigator
come to church this week, his first time, and he even bore his
Scripture of the week is Isaiah 44:21-22: "Remember these, O Jacob and
Israel; for thou art my servant: I have formed thee; thou art my
servant: O Israel, thou shalt not be forgotten of me. I have blotted
out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and, as a cloud, thy sins:
return unto me; for I have redeemed thee.
Kanji of the week is: 台風 pronounced "tie-phoo" and means Typhoon.
Monday was district p-day. We went to get King parfait's at a shop in
Odate (I may have told you already), and the rest of it was spent in
the church playing Jenga and other games. At night we went and visited
an investigator, but not much else happened.
Tuesday we went and did service, studied, and walked around for five
minutes before the rain started coming down and the wind got really
strong. So, since we were asked to stay indoors if it got too
dangerous, we did. The rest of the day was inside, because of the
Typhoon that came. There was strong wind, and lots of rain, but we
didn't get the worst of it. We were pretty safe. Just not safe enough
to go outside. So we did weekly planning.
Wednesday we went and got my bike fixed because the tire got messed up
somehow and we didn't know how to fix it. We walked to a less active's
and talked with him for a bit, and then walked back to the bike shop
to pick up our bikes (Elder H's bike's tires were a little weak).
From there we tried to do some housing, but no one answered. Then we
had a lesson with a member. After that was English class, and that was
fun. There were only two students and us, so at the end of the lesson,
we played scrabble. It has been a while since I've done that.
Thursday was a really hot day, and no one was answering their doors.
Then we headed to the church and did some stuff indoors. After dinner,
we went and visited two investigators. One of them was just about to
leave to eat at a local restaurant, and was scared by us because right
when we rang the door bell he came out wearing earbuds. We had a quick
talk with him, and then visited another investigator. We talked about
church a bit, and he said that he would come (and did!).
Friday we went up to Aomori for Zone training meeting. It was great
and very spiritual. I got a short chance to translate while the
English translator was giving a training (he did it in Japanese), and
that was a really spiritual training. Not much else happened that day,
because I messed up train times, and we had a two hour layover in
Hirosaki on our way back home.
Saturday was good too, but not too much to talk about. English class
was fun, because there were lots of students.
Sunday we had an awesome time with being able to teach a last minute
Sunday school lesson to our investigator and one of the sister's
investigators, along with a few other members who joined in. There's
not too much else that happened for a while, because of studies and
the like. Then we were able to meet with lots of people in the
evening, and that was very miraculous.
So many good things about this week, and I can't even tell all of
them. I hope that you all have a good week. Love you all!


Elder H made some pancakes that turned out greener than he thought they would be, but were still good.

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