Monday, January 4, 2016

New Year's Celebration Craziness and a Sunday full of Miracles! お正月、 そして奇跡いっぱいの日曜日

Place: Matsumoto
Companion: Elder Horio


Yakiniku and Shaba shabu at Miyajima's! BEST SHABU SHABU EVER

Yuuichi kyodai (brother Yuuichi)
Segregation at its finest - haha well staged by Elder Andrade at the Tani household
究極の人種差別ーブラジル人宣教師アンドラージ長老の仕業 ハハハ  谷家にて撮影
New Years game we played at Tani's. Way fun! (*it is called "hyakunin isshu". Traditional Japanese card game.)

January 3, 2016
Ok I'm short on time so I will try to briefly explain an insane Sunday
full of amazing miracles and blessings. We had been trying to figure
out how to get Yoshino Kyodai to church, because he didn't have a
ride. Naganuma Kyodai was able to give him a ride on his way to
church! Neither of them knew each other but everything worked out
great! What a relief. But the big miracle that happened today was
Miyajima san. He came to church right on time and we sat down together
in Fast and Testimony meeting. We sang the hymns, explained the
sacrament to him when it came around and then told him what Fast and
Testimony meeting was. After a couple people had gotten up and
eloquently born their testimonies, he turned to us and said, "Hey can
I go bear my testimony too?" We told him that of course he could and
that we would go up there with him. And so it was that Miyajima, our
friend from choir whom we had never taught a lesson to, got up in his
first Sacrament Meeting and bore his testimony that he knew that God
lives in front of our baffled Matsumoto Branch. We, equally awed
missionaries, quietly sat behind him on the stand as he told the
branch members that it was because of the missionaries' examples that
had caused him to want to change his life and start believing in God.
Afterwards Elder Horio and I got to bear our testimonies as well.
After we sat down, various branch members bore their testimonies and
mentioned our friend Miyajima and how grateful they were to have him
with us. After the meeting, he was greeted and thanked by many many
members and we then went over to a classroom for Miyajima's first
lesson. We had three members and four missionaries in there teaching
him and he pounded us with questions! After the first hour ended,
everyone left except for Horio Choro, Yuuichi Kyodai and I. We
continued to answer his questions in a more relaxed setting and at the
end of the hour, invited him to baptism. He declined because he
doesn't quite want to become a Mormon. He believes most of what we
teach but has a hard time accepting just a couple things and because
of that he wants to remain separate. But I know that when he understands 
why the Gospel is important in his life, why he needs Jesus Christ, then he 
will want to get baptized so bad that nothing could stop him.

今日はめちゃくちゃ沢山奇跡を見ました!時間があまりないので、なるべく簡潔に素晴らしくクレージーで祝福いっぱいだった日曜日の説明をしますね。まず最初は、車のない吉野兄弟がどうやって教会に来れるだろうと試行錯誤していたんですが、長村兄弟が教会へ行く途中で拾ってくれる事でこれは解決。2人とも面識が全く無かったんですが、全て上手くいき一件落着。あー良かった!それはさておき、今日の大きな奇跡は宮島さんでした。彼は今日、時間きっちりに教会に来て一緒に断食証会に出席しました。開会の賛美歌を歌い、聖餐が回ってきたらその説明をし、その際、断食証会についても説明しました。2〜3人の教会員の方々が流暢に証を述べた後、突然宮島さんが「僕も証をしてもいい?」と聞いてきたので、「もちろん!私達も一緒に前へ行きますよ。」という事で、宣教師からレッスンを一度も受けた事のない、合唱団の練習で知り合って友達になった宮島さんが初めて来た聖餐会で、「神様はいます。」と、ビックリして目を丸くしている支部の教会員達の目のまえで証をしたのです。同じくビックリして彼の背後で静かに座っている私達の前で、続いて「宣教師達の模範を見て、自分も人生を変えたく思い、神様を信じる様になった。」と支部の皆さんに話していました。その後、堀尾長老と私も証をし、支部の教会員の方々も色々証をされたんですが、皆、宮島さんが今日きてくれた事への感謝の気持ちを述べていました。聖餐会後も、沢山の教会員の方々が宮島さんに挨拶しに来てくださり、感謝の念を伝えたりしていました。さて、その後宮島さんの初レッスンへ。教会員3人と宣教師4人が参加したんですが、宮島さんの質問攻めでした!(笑) 1時間が過ぎ、殆どみんな部屋から出て行ったんですが、残った堀尾長老、雄一兄弟と私の3人でもうちょっとリラックスした雰囲気の中で彼の質問に答え続けました。最後にバプテスマを受けませんかと聞いたんですが、殆どの教義には賛成できるが、2、3納得いかない点がまだあるので、モルモンにはならないという事でした。いつか、なぜ福音が大切か、なぜ彼の人生の中でイエスキリスト様が必要なのかを本当に理解出来る日が来たら、バプテスマを受けたいと思うんではないかなと思います。

Then after church we went to Okamura Kyodai's house for dinner and
games. Yuuichi Kyodai and Miyajima came. It was awesome! We taught a
lesson there and that pretty much turned into a continuation of our
previous discussion. This discussion continued on for a couple hours
and then we all got really tired and went home, well satisfied by
Okamura Kyodai's fabulous cooking. So all in all, we spent around 4 or
5 hours teaching Miyajima san today. Wow what a guy. I love him so
much! We are meeting with him again tomorrow to practice for the Talent Show 
on Saturday and of course, EAT RAMEN.

70 pieces of sushi, $30 spent, 4 happy missionaries and 1 Happy New Year dinner!
Elder Nakatsuka knows how to cook a mean ebi tempura. We ate cheap, high quality and high quantities of sushi cause that's that's how we New Years in Nagoya mission! When you make it yourself it's sooooo much cheaper!

My amazing comp! 私の最高な同僚!

Wow what an incredible day it was. So many other miracles happened,
like Asai Shimai bearing her testimony about the missionaries in
Sacrament Meeting, two less active members returning for the second
Sunday in a row and also I got to meet with another less active member
and will now be playing a violin duet with her daughter.


I know that God lives and that He understands and loves us. As we
continue to strive towards His goals, He will accelerate and magnify
our efforts exponentially. When our goals our God's goals, they will
be achieved.


I am deeply grateful for all of the incredible miracles that God has
allowed me to see today.

Love you guys!

Elder Johnson



"You will find more golden investigators than garbage cans in Japan" - Elder Tanner
So true
I have been here for five months in Japan and just in last week found my first normal garbage can in a public place. Not a bottle garbage can, not in a bathroom, A NORMAL GARBAGE CAN. We threw stuff away and it was glorious. 
Apartment deconstruction as we deep clean - we lifted all of the tatami and cleaned it and the floor beneath

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