Happy Birthday, Lacey! Happy Birthday, Uncle Grant! Happy Birthday, Elder Gass! Happy Birthday, America!

Hello, everybody! How are you doing in your various locations? I am
doing quite well here in Japan!

This past week has been wonderful! We have an 84-year-old investigator named Miyamura, and we were able to meet with her twice this week. This week was the first time we had a member present at her lessons (our two lessons we had previously were just at her door), and they were definitely very helpful at both lessons. The first lesson was a bit interesting as we were still unsure how best to teach her. Her eyesight is degrading, making it difficult for her to read the small characters in the Book of Mormon, so anything we want her to read has to be copied larger. She also sometimes has difficulty understanding and remembering what we teach. However, we discovered that the easiest way for her to remember is through pictures, so we will be using a lot of visual helps for her. She is awesome, though! She keeps every commitment that we invite her to do, and has come to church every Sunday since we met her.

We also met with two less-actives this week, and had nice conversations with them. Yoshikura is 65 years old and is a really nice guy! We talked a lot about family with him, and shared a message about temples and eternal family. I am not exactly sure why he is not coming church, but we will figure that out soon! Masumoto has lived an interesting life; he used to be in the Yakuza (japanese mafia), but then changed his ways. He is awesome, and loves to learn. He also likes to talk. We had about an hour-long conversation with him about learning the gospel. I look forward to having great conversations with him again!

President and Sister Egan (our new mission president and his wife) arrived last week, and we will be having interviews with him this Thursday. We’ll see what new things they bring into our mission!

It feels a bit strange knowing that my younger brother Kyle has gone the way of all the Earth (to Spokane). πŸ™‚ I will definitely miss serving at the same time as him. Even though we were half a world away from each other. However, I know that he will continue to be a wonderful missionary wherever he goes!

I know that this is the Lord’s work! It is often difficult but always rewarding and miraculous. Sometimes it can be difficult to see the miracles, but I know that the Lord works so many miracles that it is impossible to recognize all of them! He loves His children so much!

I love you all, and hope that you have a superb day, a wonderful week, and a fantastic year!

Love,

γƒžγƒ‰γ‚»γƒ³γ€€ι•·θ€
Elder Madsen

Pictures!

We had a dinner with some members last night, and it was amazingly delicious (and quite filling; there was a lot of meat)!

From left to right:
Sister Koganemaru, Elder Gass, Elder Johnson, me, Elder Whisenant (my companion), Brother Isoda (who was a fisherman from about age 16 to 76; he is awesome!). Sister Isoda (Brother Isoda’s daughter) was behind the camera. It was Elder Gass’s birthday (the same day as my oldest sister, Lacey)!

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