Monday, February 24, 2014

I'm In Love 12/2/2013

First off, sorry for the lame email last week! Such a terrible time for the computers to not work. But anyways, they are working this week!

Sounds like the wedding was a success! Obviously since they are married but sounds like it was so great.  Rie-chan was a beautiful bride. Looks like the day was gorgeous weather. I still cant believe Holli got to come too!! That's so awesome!! Rie-chan sounds like a very down to earth girl and much more put together than I am haha. I'm excited to get to know her when I get back. Wanna hear something crazy? I had an interview with Kaicho this week (just the routine how ya doin interview) and he asked me how the family was. I told him about the wedding and he asked if anyone was stopping by Hokkaido. Thinking he was checking up on me (and telling the truth ha) I said no. Then he proceeded to shock me by saying that if family wanted to make a pit stop I could have lunch with you all. WHAT?!? I was kind of at a loss for words but I said well I wouldn't really want to. Which is neither a lie nor the truth. I would love to see you all and it would've been really fun but that's not why I'm here. So as much as I would've have loved to see you all, thanks for not taking a side trip to stroll the streets of Kushiro ;) This is where I am supposed to be and as sad as I was for not being at the wedding...there is a reason I am here.  

Which brings me to my next point. I have fallen in love with Kushiro. I know I said I loved my previous areas but no. No no, it doesn't even compare. I cant even begin to describe how much I love the people here. Kushiro is really our miracle baby. We, Baker s and I, came and started with an empty area book and not knowing anything. But Heavenly Father blessed us and we have been able to see so many miracles. We have investigators know, relationships with the members, and are closely working with a few NAs. I love Baker s and I love working so hard every day that I fall asleep on my knees every night. Well, it would be better if I could get through my prayers but its a work in progress :)  

So guess what? K Shimai introduced us to her deaf circle friends. She invited us to go meet them and watch them do bowling. But we misunderstood her. She was going CURLING. So we called the zone leaders and said we could go! So we went curling for the first time with a bunch of Japanese rouasha [deaf people]. Probably one of the funnest and best experiences so far. They were all really funny (oh the faces they made when they made a mistake were hilarious) and all so so so nice. I felt like a new gaijin missionary and needless to say, I didn't like it. I didn't like the feeling of wanting to say so much and not being able to. Plus the look of `Oh you're so cute, trying so hard.` hmmph. She introduced us as the Mormons and some of them said that they have seen the missionaries before riding their bikes. We have plans to go again next week so hopefully we will build some relationships and learn a little more shuwa [sign language]. We visited K shimai today and talked about faith. She basically taught us what we were going to teach her (reading the BoM brings blessings, strengthens faith, etc). Made me wonder `Then why aren't you reading it?` but she's incredible. We promised to send her a scripture every night and she promised to read it. Yay progress! We are also going to deaf awareness thing with her tonight so that will be fun. She also bought us cake. 3 PIECES EACH. We only ate one and she sent the rest home with us. When I signed デブ[fat] she just laughed and said its fine! Lose it when you get home. Soooo no denial. Awesome. But I love it anyway :)  

We went and did some sightseeing with a member today! Andrus s took us around and took us out to lunch. I love her. She is such a kind member and so much fun. Baker s and I have been on the hunt for down skirts and she took us to a store to see if they had some. They did! Plus I bought some more sweater tights.  She, among other members show so much love to us shimai missionaries.  I'm getting so excited for Christmas. The Christmas party here sounds like its going to be so much fun, plus they have a xmas box for presents for the missionaries. Yay!! Sadly transfers are next week (the 12th) so we`ll see who gets to experience a Kushiro christmas :) 

Our investigators are progressing!! But prayers are needed to help them still. We invited an investigator to be baptized and she said yes!!!!!! We weren't able to make a date but its going to happen. I know it is. She has so much desire to know whether its true or not and her faith is really growing. She is a member referral and can I just say, those are the best? Not because we didn't have to search her out, but because our lessons go so well with her member friend there. This is how all missionary work should be. Missionary work would be so much more successful if members and missionaries really worked together closely. There is a huge gap between 2 gaijin missionaries and someone who has never heard the gospel before. The friend closes the gap. She makes the gospel real, applicable, and something that the investigator can see making a difference in her own life. I've never had lessons go so well. It helps that the member friend is an RM but seriously, member dendo is the best. So please, choose to keep the commitment extended by Elder Ballard from General Conference. By Christmas, invite someone. Invite them to church, to take the lessons, to have dinner with the missionaries, to the ward christmas party, something! Be bold and just go for it. Please :)  

Weather is getting colder. We started wearing our down coats this past week. I also slipped on some ice while riding my bike (don't worry, I landed on my feet :) ). But its still bearable. As long as we are bundled up, its not bad. So don't worry about us too much yet. Just please pray for our investigators. They really need the divine help.

Thank you all for your love and support!!! Love you all!


Sugihara Shimai

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