It has been a crazy week here in Oizumi! Sister Pourre and I are really trying to help Oizumi, both the investigators and the members and this week we really tried to try some different things.
|A note for one of our investigators|
|Undoukai - so may people, but lots of fun|
Undoukai is basically an event for the elementary school kids where they have running races. All of the kids participate and all the parents get together and watch. Because we had some appointments, we didn't get there until the end, but it was fun! We saw so many members and other investigators there, so we got to say hi to them.
The funny thing is that 2 investigators and a member all invited us to their kid's Undonkai, but they were all the same day and time, but different schools! We could only go to one, but we made sure to text the investigators to see how their kids did. One of them won 2nd place and another won 1st!
|Naomi and Camilla|
Because of Eduarda and Naomi's promise to come to Eikaiwa, we decided to make it a Super Eikaiwa! We tried to invite as many people as possible, then we went out and bought so so much food and we were playing music and everything. It was a really fun Eikaiwa! We some new people came and we were able to play charades and it was so fun. Haha, on my last turn, I gave our investigator Florinda the word "stripes." She was a little confused so she wrote the word in Japanese to see if she was thinking of the right word. I grabbed my iPad to look it up, then she starts acting out what she thought it was to me and I died. She thought the word was "strip." I literally could not stop laughing, I died laughing and no one else knew what was going on, but they all start laughing because of how hard I was laughing. Oh goodness, I've never laughed so hard in my whole life. She was a good sport though, and Leonardo (a less-active) helped her understand the word. Ah, that was a good Eikaiwa.
We also had our first Oizumi District Meeting, where it was just us. We all gave trainings and we sang Christmas songs (Elder Miller chose them, I just played the piano) and we were able to set some really good goals for Oizumi for this transfer. These goals will stretch us, but I'm excited to see some miracles from our efforts to reach these goals!
|Our quick meal|
Then there was Saturday. This story requires some background information.
|At a Brazilian restaurant|
Fast forward to 6:00, when Vivi called us. We usually visit Vivi about 9:00 on Saturday nights, but today she invited us to a birthday party for the daughter of a former investigator. I was a little hesitant to go because how was a birthday party going to help us dendou (do missionary work)? But we said we would be there and at 8:00 we got to the Churrasco (family BBQ party) and guess who we see? Not only is Vivi (a current investigator) there, and Dayane (the former investigator), but Laiane is there too! It turned into a great night because we were able to teach some lessons, and build relationships with our investigators. And yes, there was a lot of food. Brazilians really like their meat. When we left, they still hadn't even grilled half the meat yet, and there weren't even that many people there. It was good though.
|Sushi that looks like sandwiches|
On Sunday, 5 min before church, none of our investigators were showing up and we were getting really sad again. But then a miracle happened! Eliana and her daughter drove all the way from Takasaki (1.5 hours by train) to come to church in Oizumi! Eliana was a referral from one of the members. She speaks Portuguese and only a little Nihongo so she wanted to come to church in Oizumi, but at the same time her daughter speaks Nihongo and only a little Portuguese and Oizumi is far away. She has a real desire to learn the gospel, but there aren't any Brazilians in Takasaki to help her. We talked to her over Facebook once and it was so good. We've actually been working with the Takasaki Sisters (Larson and Honda Shimai) to contact her and see if her Japanese is good enough for them to teach her. Then randomly this week, she messaged us on Facebook saying she was coming to church in Oizumi, and she did! It really was a miracle and it was so good to see her!
I think the best surprises are when I'm playing prelude or the opening song on the piano and all of a sudden I get distracted because the door opens and an investigator walks in! It's the best feeling!
|The sisters from our zone|
As for today, it really is a blessing to be able to go to the temple once a transfer. I really want to help our investigators come receive the blessings of the temple. I know that they can do it! The temple is such a beautiful peaceful place and I love it so much. I hope everyone can come to the temple one day.
I was also able to see Barton Shimai again and she is doing amazing! I'm so glad she is so close by so I get to see her a few times every transfer! I was also able to see Elder Ricks from my home stake. He is adjusting to Japan very nicely. Haha, he stands out quite a bit though since he is blonde and super tall. He just got here 2 weeks ago, but he's doing well.
Today we also had a special surprise. Sunday Night, Honda Shimai called to ask about Eliana and church and then she dropped a huge bomb on me, there is a Shake Shack here in Japan, 1 stop away from the temple. I repeat THERE IS SHAKE SHACK IN TOKYO! So naturally we went there after the temple today. It was probably the best combination of things ever, the temple and Shake Shack. For those of you who have never had Shake Shack, let me put it in perspective for you. My family went to New York City a few years ago and we were only in the city for maybe 3 days...and we had Shake Shack 3 times. That's how good it is. Anyways, it was amazing, I loved it, my companion loves it now (it was her first time, since you know she's from Brazil). Shake Shack!
|I found this on Facebook|
Lastly, I don't know if I mentioned it in my last email, but Elder David A. Bednar is coming to the Japan Tokyo mission! We are having a super special combined mission conference with the Tokyo South mission on Oct 18th and I am so excited! Elder Bednar is definitely one of my favorite apostles. I had the special opportunity to hear him speak in person twice in the MTC and now he is coming to my mission! He asked us to study 4 talks in preparation for the conference, and it has been such a blessing. I love studying the words of the prophets and apostles. I am very excited for his visit, it will definitely be a special experience.
Sorry for how long this email was, it was a crazy week (as they all are) but thank you all for your emails and love.