Sunday, November 29, 2015

11/29/2015 | Happy Thanksgiving!

Well its been a holiday hasn't it.

What did you do for Thanksgiving?

Sorry I don't have a lot of time email today. We have a lot of shopping to get done, so this is going to be short.

We are working hard here, and starting to prepare for a baptism. Itabayashi san is pretty much ready to go. We could probably even move it up week, but we'll leave it where it is as a cushion. I've been impressed at how fast I've been able to pick up the sign language. I was all ready to translate in church for priesthood yesterday (and then he couldn't come) (long story, no time) but I'm able to talk with him. Its way cool. He's just chugging along, and excited to be baptized. The sisters also have an investigator that is ready to be baptized on the same day, so we are way excited for them!

Daisuke san is also moving along. We've been teaching him commandments, and will start really trying to talk baptism this week. We're meeting at a members house, and talking with him so I think it'll go ok.

Oh by the way I didn't transfer. Still here in Muroran with my son Elder Pace.

Then Ritsuki kun is doing way good. We were able to teach quite a bit to him yesterday, and he's excited to get baptized. We are wanting to meet his parents, and are planning an activity to do so, but it looks like he's going to be able to do it to.

Well as Thanksgiving  comes to a close the Christmas Season opens up now. All you scrouges that have to wait till after thanksgiving, now are required to listen to Christmas music. Suckers.

I can't write a big long anything right now, but I challenge you this year, as all the Christmas racket occurs, try to remember the real meaning of Christmas. Try to remember your savior. He's what its all

Well that's about the time I have for this week. Sorry for a short one.
We'll see you next week!
Elder Eliot

Sunday, November 22, 2015

11/22/2015 | A week. Lots of 手話 (sign language). And Stake Conference.


Hey everyone.
Happy Labor Day in Japan. Hope you all had a good week. Ours was pretty good. We had Zone conference this week and got to hear some great workshops by Pres Nakatsuka, as well as our AP's (assistants to the president) Elder Day, and Elder Yoza. That was fun.

We were able to teach Itabayashi san and Daisuke san this week as well. Itabayashi san is well on his way to being baptized. We taught him the rest of the Commandments, and He was totally willing to obey all of them. We get to go again tomorrow to teach him about priesthood, and temples. Way excited. He is just progressing right along and heading towards the water. As for Daisuke, we were able to teach The Plan of Salvation, and the Gospel of Jesus Christ to him in one sitting. He really liked it, and told us that he is 100% going to get baptized. Said he wasn't so sure about the 26th, and he still isn't sure when, but I don't feel to worried about it. I think if we work hard, and teach him right, he will be able to get all whited out and wet. It was really fun talking with him about just being a missionary. He even straight up gave us advice on being Bold as we teach. It was pretty funny.

Haven't had a chance to do another lesson with Ritsuki kun yet, but he did come all the way up to Sapporo for stake conference yesterday, and we were able to talk with his Mom and get permission to continue teaching him. So he's ready to trudge forward too. The stake (6 or so congregations or wards are under a stake) president even mentioned him in his talk yesterday. He was pretty happy about that.

We were able to have a fun Sports activity this Saturday as well. All the young men and Women and their friends came, and we played sports at a gym near our apartment. I discovered I can push out my diaphragm far enough that I look 3 months pregnant, and it entertained them quite a bit. They all loved it especially when I would push out my stomach and serve the ball, and then fall over in fake pain. It was quite the adventure...

Anyway now that you have that info you probably didn't care about, I just have to mention how much more I know that the Book of Mormon is Gods word. I am now at Alma 31 in my reading in the Japanese モルモン書。I've been impressed that the language is different, but that it, the meaning is the same, the stories are the same, and the spirit is the same. Even across the language boundaries it emanates a spirit that just says, it is true. The wonderful Promise of Moroni works for all people
in any language in any place on the earth even in the little apartment of the Elders of Muroran. Read it. You can feel it to. Be it English, Japanese, Spanish, or Braille. You too can know. I promise that to you.

Well Im gonna be done for this week. This week is transfers, so it'll be interesting to see what happens.

Until next week.
Elder Eliot

Sunday, November 15, 2015

11/15/2015 | The Most Prepared Area in Hokkaido...


So that week went by super fast. I feel like I was just doing this yesterday. I guess that's what happens when you are full, and busy. Everything just goes by like that.... I mean like super fast....

Anyway so how is everyone? Its been a week, any fun things happen? Let me know. I miss all yours faces.

So this week, We have been working really hard, and despite taking time out for sickness, and a Zone Training Meeting, we were able to see a ton of miracles, and we have 2 more people now with baptismal dates. I'll give you a little bit of info on them.

So first of all an update on some people for you. First the Shibuya's. They are just super solid, and are going to grow to be very strong members. They are way excited to go to the temple here in a year, and are diligently trying to read their scriptures, and keep the commandments. They sadly lost a cat this week :( one of their little kittens just passed away. Little sad for them. Youji is going to be receiving the priesthood in a few weeks. So they are both pushing strong.

Itabayashi San is doing wonderful. He is continuing to push forward. Recently he has been telling us about how much he is emotionally moved, and making several other comments that are very similar to the Shibuya's when they started pushing forward real hard. He has definitely felt the Spirit and is acting on it. He has already quit smoking, and is obeying the word of wisdom. He is going way strong, and It's looking like we'll have a baptism here again next month. I better not transfer...

The next guy we made a date with is Daisuke. I think I talked about him last week, but he's the one that we found with all of the cats. We were able to go and talk to him again, and teach him the message of the restoration. He is extremely smart, and frankly just would agree with everything we said. We talk outside just as the sun was going down and the stars came out, making a perfectly beautiful scene before us from which we were able to talk about God. He was so so so cool. Super intelligent, and just knows that their is a God. 1 person. 1 being that governs everything. He is a practicing Buddhist, but still believes in Christ as well. He was very excited to accept a Book of
Mormon and accept the challenge to try to feel the Spirit, and if he does so, be baptized on the 26th of Dec. One week after Itabayashi San. Even in Muroran it'll be a white Christmas. Lol. I'm really
looking forward to talking with him again. I've never had a conversation that has been as fun as this last one we had with him. He is so cool.

The last guys name is Ritsuki Shirakawa (I think, its 白川, which has 4 different readings, so I'm guessing. In the end they all mean White River) He's actually a referral. His family recently moved into the Muroran area, and made friends with a family in the ward named the Kawano's. The Kawano's oldest son, Itsuki, invited him to an activity, and suddenly he started coming to church and any and all other activities we've had. We were able to teach him as well, and challenged him to be baptized on the 9th of January. That date might change because of a temple trip happening around that time, but for now, he is more than willing to listen, and wants to come to church whenever he doesn't have baseball. Which has been these past 2 weeks. We are going this Wed. with Sister Kawano to visit his parents, so that they don't think we are trying to brainwash him, and to make sure they are ok with us meeting with him. He seems way cool though, and has already started reading the Book of Mormon.

Well I guess that's about my time for this week. Hope you all have a wonderful week this week. I now know that I have been placed in one of the most prepared areas in all of Hokkaido. There are so many people willing to listen to us. It is a real testimony to me of the truthfulness of this gospel. It's really cool to get to help people taste the fruit. I know it's true, and I love it, and I love getting to see other people love it.

Love to everyone.
Elder Eliot

Quite the heel!

Sunday, November 8, 2015

11/08/2015 | It's Been Another Week

Hallooween Party
Well, I guess it's time to start writing an email I guess. We didn't really have a ton that I can write about, so I guess I'll try my best!

First I'll give you an update on some people. The Shibuya's are doing wonderful. They have been mailing me frequently this past week asking questions about words in the scriptures, and stuff like that. They are moving on to become good strong ward members. I'm way excited to see the growth in them. The bishop is currently thinking about callings for them, and it looks like next week, Youji is going to get the priesthood. They are solid. Next Itabayashi San, not much to report except that this past week I've really been focusing hard on my sign language skills, and I'm feeling confident and ready for the lesson we have on Wed. (Though I was feeling confident when I got out of the MTC as well, and I couldn't speak Japanese worth crap) I'll at least try. For some reason sign language is easier than the actual language, not sure why. Can't be the gift of tongues, because it's my hands not my mouth. But yeah that's the end of that.

And then one more guy to add to the list. We went down to an area further away last week called Bokoi. While trying to find a PI (which was impossible to find) we pinged on the door of a house that was way out of the way. I figured we should just start housing a little bit, and asking people where this PI might live, and theirs  was a house that I saw and just felt as though I was being pulled to it. Spiritual ropes, or something, but we went and rung the doorbell, and nobody came, so we were about to leave when a cat came out of nowhere, and of course, I couldn't resist. It was a kitten too, so of course I Had to try to pet it. While I was following it around the side of the house, and attempting to coax the cat to me (taking about 5 minutes in doing so), another side door opens, and startles me. A guy walks out, and so of course I say hello, all embarrassed getting caught playing with his cats, and start talking with him. He turns out to be way cool, tells us he is a nurse, and works as a "helper" somewhere. Currently he is in a break from his job to be at school. He has a Bible, and so we talked about the talking donkey (Numbers Chapter 26ish) and then of course the Book of Mormon. We made an appointment to come back, and the whole time he was just being a way cool cat, and He had interest, and really I'm just really excited to go back this week. His name is Daisuke (daheesookeh) Ookoshi (ohkohshee), way cool guy. Totally led to him by the spirit.

Well that's about my time for the week, so We'll see everyone next week.
Love to all!!
Elder Eliot

Sunday, November 1, 2015

11/01/2015 | A week of business, a baptism, and an awesome miracle!

11/01/2015 | A week of business, a baptism, and an awesome miracle!

The Shibuya's Baptism

Well the weeks continue to shoot by like days, and me and Elder Pace are working our butts off trying to use all of our time. So this week was Halloween. Don't have a lot of time to talk about it, but suffice it to say that it was really busy. The missionaries were in charge of the party, so we had to get it all put together and running. There will be lots of pictures to explain the business. OK enough suspense.

To clear all of your fears, I'll tell you right off the bat, we did have a baptism!!! The Shibuya's were safely brought to the font, and have been confirmed, and are now the newest members of Muroran Ward (congregation). They're even already throwing referrals our way. They are way awesome! So so so so blessed to get to see them from the beginning to the end. The baptism went over flawlessly (except our organ died, but meh) and they are ready to push to make it to the temple in a year. I have been so blessed to get to work with them, and am excited to keep pushing them till they are ready to be on their own. I want to thank everyone for your prayers on their behalf. I know that it did help. There were several miracles found for them in getting ready. Thank you very much.

Now if I could ask for your help, this will be where I talk about the other miracle that took place this week. So I don't know if I ever mentioned it, but ever since I arrived in Muroran, I have been studying Shuwa (Japanese Sign Language, or "Hand Talk") because we have a member who teaches it, and we have an investigator who is deaf. Go figure it is easier to learn than ASL, but it's been a lot of fun. So our investigator (Itabayashi San) that is deaf came to the baptism. The member that is fluent in Shuwa translated, and he had a really good experience. After the baptism we had a chance to talk with him, and we taught him about baptism, and The Gospel of Jesus Christ, and when we asked if he would like to be baptized, he said Yes!!! We were able to set a date for the 19th, of December, and he even came to church for the confirmation yesterday!!! He's way solid, and now that we are focusing harder on him, we are going to be learning Shuwa twice a week instead of 1 so yeah. I am going to be fluent in 2 languages when I come home, you know. No big deal. :) But seriously, I really do love this guy. We've been meeting with him for a little while now, and he is funny, fun, and just a loving guy. He is already very Christ-like so I'm excited for him. If you could keep him in your prayers, I would appreciate it. Maybe I'll get to see 1 more baptism before I head out of Muroran. The sister's also were able to set a date for Dec. 19 with their investigator Tsurumaki San who also came to the baptism. If you kept her in your prayers as well, I'm sure they would appreciate it.

Thanks so much for all everyone does. Make sure you don't get too fat from all that Halloween Candy. It goes straight to your thighs. Just ask Aunt Marge from Harry Potter. (Number 3) she'll tell you.

Go have a great week.

Elder Eliot

Eating (a lot) out! (I think you pay by the plate, see the conveyor belt of food?)

Elder Paces first taste of raw fish sushi!
Ouch! More food!

Quadruple Selfie!

Even more food!


Elder Pace and Elder Eliot

Elder someone, Rostedt, Eliot, and Pace

Gotta wash it down!

Elder Pace likes all sodas!