こんにちは！How are you all doing in your various locations? I am doing quite well here in 都城、日本 (Miyakonojo, Japan)!
This week has been wonderful! We were able to set two more baptismal dates! One was with one of our daigakusei (college student) investigators, Taira-kun. He has already received most of the lessons, but it has been a while so we decided to review the Kaifuku (Restoration) and Sukui no Keikaku (Plan of Salvation), and it went very well. We invited him to be baptized and he said yes, that he wants to become a better person and feels that this is the way he can do it! He will be baptized on July 26th (the same as our first baptismal date investigator, Kuzuguch san). He is great!
Our other baptismal date from this week was with an investigator named Maeda san. Elder Jensen and Fujimaki found him sometime in March, and it has only been hit-and-miss genkan visits since then. In one of our previous visits, when asked whether he was genki, he said no and mentioned that he has an anxiety issue, and that he has his ups and downs. Thus far it seems that he had been mostly down, because every time we visited him he seemed somewhat down and not extremely interested. This past week was essentially going to be our "drop-or-not" visit, because he was not really progressing. Fortunately, we did not end of dropping him! Much to our surprise, he was extremely genki this week – practically bursting with excitement when he answered his door. It was quite a stunning change. Before we even began he asked if we could visit again next week, which is great! During the lesson we felt that it was a great time to invite him to be baptized, and (as you already know) he said yes! Maeda san is going to be baptized on August 16th.
We were unable to meet with Kuzuguchi san because she was sick. However, we should be able to meet with her again this week. We have also been texting her a daily scripture, and she often responds saying how much she loved it. She is wonderful!
So, we now have three baptismal dates, all of which were set within approximately one week! We also have a lesson tomorrow evening with Daisuke-kun (less-active member) and Miki-chan (his girlfriend, who previously had a baptismal date). We had not had any real contact with Miki-chan for some time because she has been very busy with work and school, and it has been extremely difficult to contact both her and Daisuke-kun. However, we were able to visit a bit with Daisuke-kun and his father (Kuroki kyoudai) on Tuesday, and set up the lesson for tomorrow. We are hoping to be able to set another baptismal date for Miki-chan, as well.
Our branch also held their open house this past Saturday. Even though it was chotto negai (10:00am-7:00pm; they did it as a "church tour"), it was very good! We had about 15 non-members come, gave out 11 copies of the Book of Mormon (everybody who did not already have one in their possession accepted a copy!), and found two new investigators (with many potentials). We were quite tired afterward, but quite happy with the results. It was also a great testament to me of the power of kaiin dendou. Every nonmember that came was there because a member had invited them (none of the people we invited came). A few of them did not know any of the members, but only came because one of the members pulled them (almost literally) off of the street! Members are so powerful in bringing investigators for the missionaries to teach!
It is nice to know that much of the family was able to get together to celebrate Independence Day, Lacey’s birthday, and Isaiah’s birthday! Happy Birthday!!! I am grateful for family, and while I miss getting together and doing so many fun things, I know that I am where I need to be right now. A few times on my mission I have had a dream that I went home early, and it was the worst feeling ever! I love my family so much, but I love the people here! I feel like I am just beginning to feel what God means when he says that the worth of our souls is great to Him, and am beginning to feel that great joy which He says promises in D&C 18:10, 15-16. I have been in one city of Japan for about three-and-a-half months now, and these people have become like family to me. I love them so much, and it will be difficult when I transfer away from them.
I know that this is the Lord’s work, and I love it! I am grateful to be serving His children in Japan, and I am extremely grateful and excited for all the miracles which we have been witnessing.
I love you all! Have a wonderful day, a superb week, and a superfluous year!
p.s. Apparently there is a typhoon headed for Japan, so next P-Day I will probably be a little bit more wet and wind-blown. Hooray for typhoon season! 🙂
p.p.s. I have a few pictures, but am out of time! 😦 I will try sending them next week!
p.p.p.s. Mom, this may be incorrect, but I thought you had mentioned in a previous email that Kimball, David, Hyrum, and Isaiah are planning on coming to Spokane sometime this month. If that is incorrect, then oops. I am sending a small package (in a large manila envelope) today, and it has a few things in it for them. Hopefully it will get there in time. If they are not coming then you can just give it to them the next time you see them. The package also has some stuff in it for you, Dad, and Grandma Mooney. Also, thank you for my bank account balance (that is approximately what I thought was in there, but just wanted to make sure). I love you!