Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Hello Everyone!

24 February 2015 Sakado

Spring is just around he corner here in Sakado. It's been cold but not as cold as usual and when it rains it smells like spring. It's not cold winter rain. Who knew there was a difference right? This week we had some really cool finding and teaching experiences. It was a fun week.

On Monday we went with one of our investigators to visit her friend who wanted to meet us. His name is Yutaka San. He is a cowboy nihonjin (I didn't know they had them here) and I guess he is a little famous. We had dinner and talked. He and his friend, that was there, asked lots of questions about the church, and we were able to boldly answer each one. They were all wowed. Then we got to sing. We had prepared a few hymns for him, as a miyagi or gift, and then we sang some Christian and country songs with him. I felt like Heavenly Father was helping us sing. I don't think I've ever sung like that before. I was able to harmonize too and sing along with these songs that I'd never heard of before. And everyone was just wowed. They didn't want us to go. At the end I invited Yutaka San to church. He didn't say yes, but he didn't say no either. I walked out of there feeling so good inside.

I feel like we did exactly what we needed to do and we had an impact, and so did the Spirit, on each one of the people there. I also felt a little bit like a celebrity, so I enjoyed that too. We met with our investigator yesterday, and a week later, Yutaka San is still raving about us. He wants us to come again!

Right now we are working with to less active members. Both are adorable little old women. I love them each. And both are finally progressing! We visited one of them Sunday and she just said the nicest things. I smiled all the way home (about a 40 minute bike ride). She told us that we had a light and our light was filling and changing her heart and she just loves us and is so grateful we come every week, rain or shine. She wanted to write a haiku for us, but she hadn't written the right one yet. She also said that she wants to come back to church! She isn't ready yet, but I can feel it, she is gonna come back soon! I am so happy. She has a hard time hearing us. So we teach her through songs. We give her scriptures and share our testimonies with her. It's really special. I love it. And her!

We had a lesson with someone new this week! .She was one of the other sister's investigators. But, we aren't really sure how much gospel she has heard. Anyways, we called her a bunch of times, she was busy, or there was always something but finally we made an appointment to meet with her! She was a little weirded out that we had her number and such but after a little bit of explaining, it stopped being weird and we were able to have a really awesome and powerful lesson on the Book of Mormon. We told her about that and prayer, shared scriptures, asked inspired questions and gave her a Book of Mormon, in her own language. She was so excited when the book was in Korean! She definitely could feel the spirit, and she wants to meet again! She invited us to come learn Japanese with her too! So I think she really does want to see us again.

Our Saturday, didn't go at all as planned. Well, the beginning did. We had kodomo eikaiwa with a huge turn out again-around 15. And new faces too! Then we headed for lunch and had planned to spend the rest of the day finding. We were heading outdoors when we received a call from one of our members. She needed help setting up for the activity the ward was having that night. So we changed plans, and headed to church.

On our way to church we ran into this really odd man in the train. He was gaijin (ed. note: American) as well and wouldn't leave us alone. He said something about how we needed to stick together and wanted to take us out for drinks. I told him we didn't drink. So he asked about dinner. He was creepily persistent. I finally told him about our rule we have as a missionary, we couldn't go out with him, and if he wanted to meet our male missionary friends they would be more than happy to go out with him. He said "no! I want you!" I told him we couldn't, apologized and said if you want to see us again you can come to church. Then we left.

We got to church and helped set up. It took much longer than anyone anticipated.

After, we were invited by the bishop and asked to help with the activity so, we ended up staying for part of it too. While it was fun, I just really wanted to go finding. We had big plans for the day. So after we had dinner and dessert with everyone we decided to take off. And I'm SOOO glad we did. We just did train dendō for the rest of the night and had some really awesome contacts! Sister Bettridge is a pro. We were trying to place Books of Mormon so that's what we talked about. Sister Bettridge bore her testimony to one lady and she started crying! But then started apologizing cus she did not believe in any of that and quickly got off the train. I am positive she felt the spirit. But, it seemed like one of those "I know it's true I can feel it but I don’t want it in my life" moments.  It ended kind of terribly but, I think it was a seed planted for sure.

Then we talked to another girl, who actually spoke really good English. She missed her stop while we were talking to here so I figured she had to be a kinjin (ed. note: “kindred spirit”, I think). She loved to travel so while sharing about the Book of Mormon and church we related it to a road map. If you don't have directions you get lost. The gospel is our life directions. She wasn't really interested I think. But she may come to eikaiwa!

On our way home, well actually while waiting for our train home I saw a girl sitting in the bench. She was dressed really well and on the young side. I thought maybe we should talk to her, but then thought she is less likely to be interested that someone else and we need to make our last contact count, we hadn't given a single Book of Mormon away yet!

Well, through a series of small, probably not really coincidental, events we ended up talking to her on the train. She was so prepared. I don't know what will come out of it, but if nothing else she was prepared to talk to us. She had traveled in Italy, and had visited many Christian churches. She knew a little bit about Christianity, she could tell us when she had felt God's presence in her life and she gladly took the Book of Mormon Sister Bettridge offered her. I'm so proud of sister Bettridge. She doesn't even need me. She is just awesome and so willing to open her mouth and share the gospel. She is really amazing. She is gonna do amazing things as a missionary. I love her!

Yesterday we had a giant conference and Elder Ballard came and spoke to us. It was sooo good! But I have no more time. I'll write about it next week.

Funny stories of the week:

One of our members came to the ward party after going to the dentist. We aren’t quite sure what the dentist gave him, but he was pretty goofy. He walked in and just didn't look much like himself. I didn’t think much into it until the Elders started snickering. His cheeks were super swollen and occasionally he would just giggle to himself. It was pretty funny. I'm not sure anyone but the missionaries noticed though!

This probably isn't funny to anyone but me but, one day this week during study I whacked my foot on the table. It hurt! And sister Bettridge laughed. That hurt a little too. Then that night after planning we both kneeled down and she said "I'll pray!", bowed her head and bonked it on the table. I lost it. I'm laughing right now. It was just one smooth motion. She so gracefully hit her head. And it made such a loud noise!

Ok that's it for this week.

Love you all!

Sister Molinari