Sunday, October 27, 2013

10/27/13 Splits and lots of cold wind

Hey! It has been a good solid week of being in Nemuro. I used my district leader powers to bring the other companionship of Elders from Kushiro over here this time. Also thanks for doing stuff with my facebook profile! Please accept pretty much any friend request unless they are suspicious looking Americans (haha). Van also sent that message to my phone probably about the same time. That's cool you guys saw it too! She said she took 30 minutes trying to figure out the English for it. To answer your question, I used the same pants that Andersen E borrowed from Nakazawa B.

I'm grateful I've been able to see Heavenly Father perform so many miracles here as well! Okuchi Shimai is doing pretty good and we actually spent some good time with her last week. She actually taught primary yesterday! Way cool. Glad Mara's dance went well! I had a hard time imagining how her date's last name might be pronounced. That's cool what Margaret said! Did bishop ever get my postcard? Halloween stuff sounds like it's going good. We are having a party for Eikaiwa. Hopefully lots of people will come! It's gonna be a little simple probably, so we'll so how it goes. I didn't hear/feel anything relating to an earthquake, but if it happened to transfer into the air in wind form, I did. I'm good though! Just had to bust the scarf and undershirts out.

Starting from last Monday, it was kinda lame weather so we just chilled inside and I practiced guitar a bunch. We did some decent finding that day. Tuesday my DTM went really well! We went to this area called Nishihama and did lots of finding there and met some nice people who could have some potential. Afterwards we had some plans to visit people that didn't work out and we were a little stuck because of how early it gets dark here lately. We did find some people to contact on the street plus people to call at home before the Kushiro Elders arrived. I went on splits with Yoshikawa E who is on his second transfer. We walked all day and weren't able to meet a lot of the people we wanted to, but the people we did meet we were able to teach awesome lessons to! It was fun to dendo with a nihonjin again and I learned a lot of things I could apply to helping Morgan E out. We also visited Okuchi S and she is still doing awesome and studying a ton. She is always really happy to meet new missionaries and is collecting signatures and stuff like that. Afterwords we stopped by Van's work and she introduced a lot of her Vietnamese friends! They might not be super interested in the gospel at first like Van, but with her help we have been able to share the gospel with them a bit! She gave us some interesting Vietnamese food and we gave her friends lesson pamphlets in Vietnamese. My Vietnamese has been getting better too hahaha. The next day I went on splits with Inoue E who is 8th transfer and is awesome. He gave me a lot of advice for being a trainer and we had lots of fun finding and walking! In town we ran into an old investigator who was with his friend. He introduced him to us and told us to invite him to church and Eikaiwa so we did! He was really nice and pretty good at English. We also met Tatsuya again for the first time in a while and gave him more snickerdoodles I made (which are my new secret weapon. I've been giving them to lots of people). We taught him the first part of the plan of salvation and he was interested, but it got a little deep and hard for him to follow so we took a break. He seems to have pretty good potential to progress, but his wife isn't interested so he is a little embarrassed to read the BoM or pray at home. He's also really busy with his son. Anyways after that, we all went out to Sushi w/ Okuchis and it was way fun! Next day (Friday) I hadn't been able to sleep very well, but felt good enough in the afternoon to have our planning session and then go to Eikaiwa. The guy we met on the street came and it turns out that he is Catholic and had a lot of questions about church too! It went pretty well. Maybe he'll become a good investigator.

Saturday it was really bad weather, but we took a bit of time to plan for our Halloween party. We also went out to do a bunch of finding and there was a lady who was busy working so couldn't talk much, but gave us an umbrella since we were out in the rain! That's Japanese people for ya! Sunday was really windy! Church was good though! Like I said Okuchi S taught primary and was a little tired afterwards, but did pretty well! I got asked to speak in sacrament meeting... IN sacrament meeting! I spoke about agency since it was what I had planned to teach in gospel principles but didn't get to teach because Van S was late. I didn't ever think I'd be able to give a 20 min talk on the spot let alone in Japanese. It went good though. After church we worked with the members a bit to get ready for the Halloween party. Then we met Van and reviewed a bit of the first lesson on the restoration with her, but it was so windy we gave up halfway. We stopped by the dorm of some of her Vietnamese friends and they were happy to see us again/gave us chocolate/were impressed by the 5 Vietnamese words I know. We went home and got into warmer clothes, then went to see Hebikawa who has been reading the BoM. She gave us potatoes and onions because she liked the snickerdoodles I made for her. We taught her a bunch about families and temples, etc and she was pretty impressed that we do so much for our ancestors since Buddhism is all about ancestors. She also randomly asked about crosses and the sabbath day, since she had learned about them when she was younger. We were able to show her a lot of the cool and unique things about our church and hopefully it'll get her to want to come! She also prayed for us at the end which was pretty cool ;)

That was pretty much it though! Thanks for all your support and love and little favors. As for a package I just still want that RM/singles ward soundtrack and Sufjan Stevens. I'll be happy with that I think :)
Hutchinson Choro

Sunday, October 20, 2013

10/20/13 More typhoons and more miracles!

Hey! It has been another pretty great/crazy week again! We spent a lot of time not-in-Nemuro again, but it was good! On Monday we went to Kushiro again. I bought my rain suit/back pack cover that's way sweet. I also walked around a bunch. I went on mini splits w/ Yoshikawa E again that night and met this guy we taught last time I went with him. Tuesday we got up way early and rode the train to Obihiro for zone conference. There were some way good workshops on the spirit, comp relationships, and helping all the young missionaries with Japanese hahaha. It really was awesome though and a lot of it really answered my prayers. I love being in Nemuro, but because of how separated it is, it's so crazy how fun it is to meet other missionaries again. We also had Morgan E's bean shower. Very different from how mine was. No Japanese and no singing as sisters in Zion in Japanese, but whateva. It's probably better that way ;) It is really great that so many new missionaries are coming, but sad when other missionaries die... Especially Japanese ones. I feel like I get along with them the best/like the diversity. We went back to Kushiro and I streeted there a bit w/ Morgan E. Wednesday I went on splits w/ French E and it was the craziest typhoon of my life. Luckily I had my new rain suit and it protected me pretty well. We walked through it pretty much all day and even though we made it to a few of the people we wanted to visit everyone was like "you're crazy! go home! we can talk when the weather is better!" hahahaha Thankfully the member we visited let us come in to dry off, and gave us dinner out of nowhere. He is way awesome btw. He kept showing us stuff on facebook. If you ever get a chance will you put up a new profile pic for me? Maybe even change my current location to Nemuro or something. That'd be fun.

Thursday we went back to Nemuro and then had weekly planning session. Friday was a pretty good/awesome day of dendo! Cool miracle too. This girl randomly runs up to us and asks us why we are in Japan. I explain who we are and she gets really excited and starts speaking to us in fluent English about how she just moved to Nemuro for work and really wants to practice her English. We invited her to Eikaiwa and she came! She even turned down a drinking party haha. But anyways after class she was really curious about what made us decide to be missionaries and it was a great opportunity to bear my testimony to her. Maybe she'll become an investigator soon! :o

Saturday was nice too. Lots of housing and trying to visit non-attendings/investigators to invite them to the baptism which went WAY good! Okuchi Shimai hasn't been feeling well lately and wasn't able to come to church which was sad, but Van came in this traditional Vietnamese dress and enjoyed the lessons really well! The baptism happened after church and there were some great talks and a song from the primary. Then I did the baptism and confirmation and it was really awesome and spiritual. The best was her testimony afterwards. She is such a boss. I can't wait to do lots of missionary work with her! I also want to make sure that I keep working with Okuchi Shimai enough as well to keep her strong! So after church we had a little potluck and Van brought some pretty good Vietnamese food. We headed out to dendo and this investigator that we haven't been able to visit for 3 weeks (Hebikawa) has been reading the BoM the whole time! Little by little, but she's through 1st Nephi! We had a good short lesson with her and then saw Van again because she wanted to give us more Vietnamese food. She also introduced us to her Mom and little sister over skype! It was way cool/funny. I realized that moms are the same no matter where in the world they are. That's it though!

Glad stuff is great at home too. I'm definitely good here on medicine and stuff. You made sure of that before I left ;) It has been cold here though and the typhoons blow all the leaves off the trees. I bet Mya's primary program is gonna be sweet!!! That's also way tough with Lily and all... :( Let me know how she is. I'm still definitely thinking about the future and nothing is decided, but if you could maybe ask Bro. Proctor if he has any advice for possibly going into auto to eventually work with a Japanese company that would be cool. I still really want to study music and all, but I think having options will be a good thing. Thanks for leaving the note on Andrus Kaicho's stuff.

Glad to hear about how well Mara and church lessons are going! I really wanted to mail Adam as well, but I'm out of time ;( Let him know that I think his attitude about the work is way awesome. Also that I'm glad he isn't in a car mission because biking is real work B)

I love you tons and am grateful for all your prayers and love! Tell the young Baird family congrats! crazy.
Hutchinson Choro

New rain suit just in time for the typhoon

At church with Morgan E and Van on her baptism day

Baptism day for Van!

Morgan E's bean shower!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

10/13/13 Splits, bad news, good news, conference in 5 languages!

Hey! What's up? Adam's girlfriend is going on a mission? Where? That's lame they didn't let Adam even contact from the airport! I wonder how he is doing. I'll shoot him a mail afterwards.

So I'm in Kushiro again! We have zone conference tomorrow in Obihiro so we decided to have P-day here again because it's more effective time wise. Let's see what's happened since then....
So we had our in person DTM last Tuesday which was pretty fun! I am still not used to doing DL workshops and usually take up too much time, but I guess that's better than not using it, right? Afterwards we headed to sushi with everyone and on the way I got a mail from Ozawa Kaicho saying that... Jay Andrus Kaicho (the Kushiro branch president) passed away. I was already pretty bummed about Uncle Merril dying and this made me double sad... He was such a good friend and like a second dad to Andersen E and I... He went to America to go to his own dad's funeral and while he was there he fainted and had a brain aneurysm or something like that.... I hope his family is doing okay. He has 3 sons (1 on a mission) and he was a big influence on everyone here in the Kushiro District (stake). All the stuff that happened made me rethink my future plans a little bit. Not 100%, but I thought of how cool it would be to be like him and live in Japan and help the church here. I could maybe get a job for Toyota or Honda kinda like Bro. Proctor always suggested when I was in Auto shop. Just an idea still, but it might be more sturdy for supporting a family as well. Anyways. It was lots of thinking about different things time.

We ate sushi for Morgan E's first time and he wasn't a big fan unfortunately hahaha. I then went on splits with Miyaki E which was pretty interesting. We met this guy they met on the street before who is Ainu. They are like the Indians of Hokkaido and they're really rare. He of course was raised in Japan his whole life, but whoa.... He was a crazy. He was telling us about how he's been abducted by aliens and he even used telepathy on me. hahaha! He was really nice though and has interest, but might be one of those people that you let God take care of...? He also wouldn't really let us talk. I never thought I'd meet anyone like that though! Before we left he told me that I had a really high midiclorean count. Not those exact words, but a Japanese equivalent. ANYWAYS I was feeling pretty down so it was hard to do my best dendo-ing with Miyaki E, but we did some service for a member, some good finding, and a good less active lesson. Wednesday Morgan E and I headed home and it was raining pretty hard/way tired from the train so we had DKK that day instead which took up the remaining day time. The next day (Thursday) went pretty well. We got a lot of finding done and met with Hayasaka and read some of the Book of Mormon with her. We were able to get some good stuff out of it the she can apply to herself and raising her son so hopefully she'll read on her own too. We also taught the Abes and they are starting to progress a bit! They've been praying regularly and we helped them to make a Book of Mormon reading plan. He has also been thinking about the word of wisdom even though we hadn't taught it to him fully yet. He also talked about how he wants his funeral to be in our church (because he's old, and Buddhist funerals cost TONS of money). It went pretty alright though. The main thing we taught him is about coming to church. He still has some worries, but hopefully with our explanation and talking to him about them he will be able to come and feel comfortable :)

Friday I woke up with a fever, so I slept all day and Morgan E studied. I felt really bad, but after sleeping for a few hours I was good again and ready to go out to dendo. However it was raining really hard again so we stayed in until Eikaiwa and went to teach that. It went pretty decent! Okuchi Shimai brought another friend:s kid! Saturday was conference ALL day! It was great though. I had to watch the first session in Japanese like last time because the comp only had one headphone jack. I went and bought an adapter after though and was able to watch the others in English :) I can still pretty understand almost all of it in Japanese, I just have to concentrate way more.

Sunday we also had conference and Van came to watch the first session too! She watched it in Vietnamese, which was awesome. I had to watch the first session in Japanese again because of that, but it was still good! The crazy thing is that in all, there was English, Japanese, Vietnamese, Tagalog, and sign language all going at the same time at one point!!! Whoa! I was pretty moved. In between sessions we filled out Van's baptism paperwork, but she was having a little bit of worries about disappointing her father back home. I was worried and didn't know what to do at first so we prayed together right there. After we were done praying I asked her "how about your other father? Your Heavenly Father?" and we talked a bit and she firmly committed to everything for next Sunday! After conference we spent some time with everyone and then Van introduced us to a friend she works with! We actually taught her a lesson about God and prayer and Van was like our member team up! She's gonna be an awesome member!

I'm not 100% sure what we'll do today, but I really need to buy a new rain jacket. The one I brought with is pretty torn up. The pants are still in way good shape though ;) I don't know how much money is in my regular account right now, but I'll check on it. It might be something I can only get in Kushiro. Anyways, thanks so much and I love you tons. I'm so grateful for families and the plan of salvation! I'm also grateful to be a child of God and priesthood holder and know that I have a great responsibility to follow Him in all that I do.

Hutchinson Choro

These pictures are mostly from our district activity where we went with members to the famous Kushiro marsh

District shoes & nametags

The marsh

Sushi with Morgan E

Sunday, October 6, 2013

10/6/13 Working hard w/ Morgan E and more Vietnamese adventures!

Whoa! Your letter this week had a lot of pretty eventful things! Lots of awesome things and a few really tough sounding things, but I'm always happy to hear about what's going on. Uncle Merril (Braden's uncle who passed away this week) is definitely in my prayers along with his family. I'm grateful I got to spend a bit of time with him before I left giving him blessings w/ dad etc. He and his awesome example to everyone in the family and all the scouts that he helped out will never be forgotten. Tell everyone on dad's side hi for me. I'm way excited for Adam to get into the field and I'm glad that he's going to go out to see tons of real miracles! We were watching "the district" the other day and I realized that the mission they have in there is one in Texas so I wondered if it'd be really similar to Adam's. The district is a missionary training video, btw. (Note: The one Adam watched was set in San Diego?)

Dad looks good with his old mission pres! Is he growing out his beard again? Haha maybe it's because he isn't wearing his glasses, but he looks a little tired. Probably just working super hard huh? That's cool you got to spend time with missionaries! All the time here I think about how I hardly ever got to meet missionaries more than maybe a couple times a year at most and I'm so excited that you get to see/hear from them often! I'm especially excited that there was another baptism for the people that live behind us! Wow!!! I can't believe so much missionary work is happening around West Valley. I feel like I never really got to experience it except for maybe Sheriann, etc. I'm excited to participate a lot when I get home! Of course I don't know how long I'll be in WVC with school and everything haha.

SO here's the week!
First off, yesterday the Zone leaders came to give Van her baptismal interview and she passed!!! She actually had a meeting on Sunday morning and said she'd be late to church so we waited the whole time and she never came! I was really really nervous and was praying hard the whole time she'd be able to come. Evans Kaicho actually visited as well to do some business and stuff, and he said that as long as we could meet her that day it was the priority. So we just waited after church and tried to get in contact with her. Finally around 2pm I found out her meeting just got over and she would come to the church right away after getting some errands done. Her errands ending up taking longer than we thought so there was more waiting, more praying, and more being nervous. She showed up around 4:30 and the interview went great! I was looking forward to going on splits with the ZL Watanabe E who is way cool, but it ended up being waiting, having her baptismal interview, and going home. She introduced us to 2 new friends and we walked them back to their dorm. She introduces us to lots of friends and we have a stockpile of Vietnamese BofM's, pamphlets, etc. now so we are excited to do missionary work with her too!

I kinda put that first because it's the biggest news I think. Her baptism will be either next week after conference or the Sunday after that!
So last Monday was a decent P-day. I was really tired for some reason and it was really rainy. We did a "heart attack" to the Ozawa family and Okuchi S as a challenge from the zone leaders to do something nice for ward members that help you out a lot. We also had a lesson with this cool guy named Kantou who is from Fukuoka and teaches high school. We actually got into a really deep conversation about God's commandments etc. and he asked really hard questions! Hopefully I was able to get inspiration from the spirit and end with a pretty good feeling. I think he has a lot of potential. One of the questions he asked is "Are you trying to be like Jesus?" which isn't a deep question really, but I was really surprised when it came out of nowhere and I had only talked about Jesus a little bit before. I feel like he's researching the church on his own or something... Tuesday was great and DTM was good too! I was able to get everyone to participate more which can be pretty tough when everyone is on the other side of the phone. We had a lot of good follow-up lessons and we did a lot to help our not-so-strong (yet) investigators to remember to read the BofM! We taught the plan of salvation to Okuchi S as her AB lesson and as a practice lesson for Morgan E. Her understanding is getting better and better! Funny story. That morning we watched some videos about using family history for dendo. We discussed afterwards about how hard it is in Japan because not THAT many people in Japan are interested in it/it's really hard to search your ancestors in Japan because most records aren't public. BUT when we taught the plan of salvation to Okuchi S we felt prompted to tell her about it and she got really excited! She's especially really excited to find names and take them to the temple someday! I kinda feel like Heavenly Father came up and said "yeah huh you can use family history in your dendo!!!" Haha I thought it was pretty cool.
Wednesday we met this guy from before named Tominaga and passed him a BofM. We had to get through a lot of just talking to him to get him to open up even a little though. He is lonely and likes talking a lot. I really hope he reads though! Same with all our other investigators! We had DKK the next day and it was crazy because of how many investigators we have. We have to choose who to focus on and it is tough because I just want to help everyone. Who woulda thought in this little area, hahaha.

That night it was really rainy, but we met with Van to have her practice baptism interview underneath the eave of a post office because there were no places we could go nearby protected from the rain. She did super amazing and her testimony is way strong. I feel like it just came out of nowhere, but that's what happens when you actually follow all the commandments I guess! Friday was lots of finding and lots of cool people! Oh yeah Thursday night we tried going to this matsuri in a far offish area and it was alright. Not very big at all, but I should've expected that from such a small outskirt town. We did a little shizen and actually met a guy who was an old investigator. When we left he chased us down to give us hotdogs because he thought we looked hungry. Saturday we had a lot of finding and a lot of follow up type lessons. I want them to read and pray soooo bad!!!! AhhhhH!!!!! I know when they do it's going to bless them, but everyone has such a hard time making the choice and making the time... They definitely will someday though!
Anyway I'm in Kushiro right now. We have a district activity today and then tomorrow we get to have DTM in person!!!!!!!!!!! Yay! :) I'll make sure to get some good pics.

I love you tons and the gospel is 100000% true!
Hutchinson Choro

These are pictures of us with the ZLs, and Watanabe E and me with Van and her friends: