Monday, March 5, 2012

March 5, 2012

We have a new 18 year old investigator named M. 南川長老 and Maris 長老 found him while I was in Takamatsu on a 交換 (exchange). He`s awesome. He is very innocent and pure and has always believed that God loves him because sunshine and flowers make him happy. He prays to be led to beautiful nature. He understands what he learns very well. He reads the material before we teach it to him and he basically recites it before we even explain it to him. When I asked him to be baptized he said ”日の堺にいけるなら構んで” (If that's what it takes to get to the Celestial Kingdom, gladly). Best answer ever. He has a goal for April 8th.

We`re still trying to get into conatct with the Y family. Do you remember Kaori T? She is married and her name is Y now. She said she visited your apartment in Orem when she was at UVSC. Anyway, she`s married, her husband is in JTAI in Kyushu and her two children aren`t baptized. She comes to church every other week. I`m not sure what her deal is, but her kids need the gospel, it sounds. We`ve ridden our bikes out to that home in Sakaide many times. I`m sure you remember it.
Marugame has lots of these giant ponds with ducks swimming and a whole bunch of garbage floating around in them.
I`m not sure what else to write about this week.

Oh, we have become Udon Otaku (Noodle Freaks). Some English students recommended a bunch of places and we`ve been going back and forth like crazy. The udon is good, but the fun is comparing different restaurants. We finally went to that 日の出 place that I sent a picture of last week. It was an experience. You sit on little stools and it`s so crowded in there you can barely lift your arms up to the table to eat. It`s like a slurping concentration camp.

山西姉妹 bore her testimony yesterday and I thought it was really powerful. She`s a very simple, country lady, but she has a testimony. She`s not good with words and is getting old, but she gave such a pure testimony. You hear lots of people say 教会に入てから ("Since I joined the church") but it was very meaningful to me having seen pictures and heard stories from around the time of her conversion 24 years ago. She just said that when we 実際に (Truly)  live the gospel and keep the commandments, we are blessed and she knows that through many years of experience. She said that this morning her husband asked 今日は食べん日か ("Is this the day you don't eat?"). Seeing her old frail body and bent back say that was very powerful. She still fasts.

It`s March so a lot of the English teachers are going home this month so there was somewhat of a farewell meeting at the branch president`s house after church yesterday. I didn`t think I could be in a room full of so many foreigners that aren`t missionaries in Japan. All of those English teachers will most likely be replace by members of the church. It`s really a community out here. This is a very interesting branch.

Transfer calls are next week. I don`t want to go.

I`ll address the news I`ve received:

I threw up in my mouth reading about Clint`s backpack. (He found an uneaten lunch in it that was two weeks old.) I`ve never been able to stand filthiness. I don`t like cleaning, but I HATE a mess. It`s been one of the hardest things to deal with on my mission. Missionary apartments are disgusting. It`s no fun when you`re trying to clean an inch of build up off of the stove or in the shower while your companion organizes his desk during your weekly hour of cleaning.

Q: Has the weather warmed up at all?
A: A couple days ago, it was astonishingly warm, but it`s rainy and cold again today. Once it gets warm and we`re not required to wear suits anymore, I think I`m going to send mine home....or throw them away? They`re destroyed, just so you know. I ripped a pair of pants pretty good, running to catch a bus in Tokushima so now I only have one pair of pants that isn`t ripped in any way. I think I`m going to go buy a super clearance one at Aoyama pretty soon and just use that for conferences, church, etc. until the end of my mission. I`ll probably go home before they make us wear suits every day again.

Q: Have you been bit by a dog yet?
A: I`ve gotten pretty close. I told you about the wailing fur ball that lives down the street from the church right? Can`t see, can`t move, can`t hear, just gets force-fed by a member. He`s begging to die, I think. There`s lots of people with bigger dogs out here in the country. In the big city everyone has little dogs that can basically fit in their pocket. One of our neighbors has an enormous German Shepard. It`s like a horse.

Q: Have you had a chance to take the bus out to Yoshima yet?
A: Still trying to figure out how to get there.
This is the coolest telephone booth I`ve ever seen. It`s right in front of 丸亀市役所 (Marugame City Hall).
I guess that`s all I`ve got. Have a good week!

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