Sunday, October 23, 2016

Iranian Karate Masters

Date: 10/24/2016
Place: Shizuoka
Companion: Elder Wilson


Tsukemen (noodles)with the guys #pday


    Hey friends and family I still exist! Sorry I haven't written in a long time. I'm making this entry from Fujieda right now. I'm on an exchange with Elder Espinoza. He's transfer 5 and he's one of the best guys the Lord's army has to offer. We pretty much had a whole day to ourselves with no appointments so we hit the pavement and visited a less active Brazilian lady (Patricia) who lives really far away. She happened to be home and we set up a next appointment. We talked to just about everyone on the street and found a good handful of people willing to meet and got a lot of phone numbers. We did some housing and found another couple guys willing to listen to our message! It's was great! Also we stopped at a Brazilian store for dinner and had some great sandwiches and guaraná. 

The district


    Ok back in Shizuoka! This week was crazy! We had two exchanges so I was in Fukuroi on Monday and Tuesday, then I came home and stayed the night at our apartment and then went to Fujieda Wednesday to Thursday. I got to exchange with Elder Banks and Elder Espinoza this week, both of whom are awesome missionaries and fun guys to work with! Lately I've been feeling the Spirit more strongly in the work. We had one particularly good OYM where we both felt the Spirit testify to this college kid as we talked to him on the street. He actually had genuine interest in improving his life through the Gospel and the Spirit backed us up as we testified to him. It felt really good! He was a little too apprehensive to give us his phone number but he asked us for a pamphlet. I know he's being prepared and when he's ready, he'll give us a call. 

    He next day we taught a Chinese guy named Ohaku. He was found by Elder Mitchel a while back and we picked him up through the phone. We got to know him and then taught him about God and the Book of Mormon. He was very interested and said he would read the Book of Mormon and get baptized if he felt it was true! The Spirit was also very strong in that lesson. 
We have been meeting with quite a few members lately, which has been really fun. I love this ward! On Tuesday, on my brief break from exchanges, we visited the Nakayamas who live out by the ocean. They were really nice and we had a good Gospel discussion. We will be going out to visit some less actives with them next week. We also got to meet with the Tsuchiya family on Thursday. They were so fun! Sister Tsuchiya can make a mean chicken katsu. Brother Tsuchiya is really funny and we had a great visit with them and a good spiritual message afterwards. Then on Saturday we met with Nagakura Kyodai. We played guitar and sang old Beetles songs with him and then had a Spiritual thought. He's a great guy but he's going through some tough times and so we're trying to get him moving along the covenant path. We also met with Kita Kyoudai who was found and baptized just a couple years ago by Elder Jacob Yamada. Kita Kyoudai's also going through some rough times right now so we're trying to help him out. We nice guy. 

    One of our YSA guys, Okada Kyoudai, came back from Okazaki yesterday and came to church in Shizuoka! I got to talk to him a little bit and found out that he spent a year studying in Spain and actually speaks pretty good Spanish! Haha so we had a good time hanging out in Spanish after that, him with his Japanese/European accent and me with my garbled, broken Portuguese/Spanish. Haha that was one of the weirder experiences of my life. I love Brother Okada! 

    The zone is doing way good! The guys in Fuji are busy plowing through tons of less actives (There's a TON in Fuji due to some special events that happened back in the day). The Numazu guys had a Sri Lankan family come to church along with a few other Japanese investigators which has gotten the ward really fired up to help out! The Fukuroi Elders have a Brazilian guy they were teaching and this week his whole family decided to get baptized! We also had two guys wreck their bikes and go to the hospital this week but everyone is ok and still working hard. Everyone seems to be doing pretty well :). Shizuoka is a pretty warm place so we don't really get winter here. Right now it's cooled off quite a bit and it definitely feels like fall but all the leaves on the trees are staying green. 

    We have been going on "Adventure Runs" in the morning as a 4 and it's been way fun! We live next to a little mountain so we usually run up that a few times every week during morning exercise time. Today we started off early and made it to the top, stopped by at a little shrine and met this grandpa that we have decided to call "Mr Miyagi." He climbs that mountain every day for exercise because Japanese grandpas and grandmas are indestructible. We saw Mt Fuji and the ocean from the top! Also we hit the city gym with the bishop this week, which was way fun! Elder Tayler and I did burnouts on the bench so now I can't move my arms. 

We ran up a mountain in the rain for this mornings exercise! It was fun and we almost died 

The good stuff

We met a lot of interesting people this week. In Fukuroi we talked to this Nepalese guy, who was a bro. Then on the way home we talked to some Iranian guys at the train station. They all had this blue uniform on so we asked what they were doing in Shizuoka. They said that they were here for a karate world tournament of some kind. It was then that I turned around and saw a massive wave of Iranian karate masters converging like a giant blue wave on the Japanese train station! Scariest thing I've ever seen. They were all way nice guys. 
Also we ran into a guy from Bangladesh last night. He was cool.  

Anyway it's been a great week of hard work, good weather and missionary success! 
Love y'all! 

Elder Johnson 

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