Monday, December 30, 2013

Santa Clause Came To Town And His Name Was Elder Howard

This week has been insane!
The end of the year rush seems to be even more aparent here in Japan!
Well this is the last email of the year so I should update y'all.

Last week the Watanabe family asked me to be Santa at their Eikaiwa Christmas Party. It was great. Elder Norman was pretty much beside himself with laughter. All the kid's wanted pictures with me and I wore an ichy fake beird for about 3 hours. It was a blast though. Other than that Christmas was pretty uneventful here in Matsudo. None of our friends were baptized and no one invited us over. We had a nice quiet Christmas here in the apartment just the 5 of us. We did eat Sushi though. That was a trip. A lot of the new missionaries in the District don't like sea food at all. We stuffed our faces with eel and octopus and fish eggs etc. It was great.
I wish there was more to report, but to be honest it was a super quiet Christmas. New years here however should be great. The mission is changing things up this year.
on the 31st that's tomorrow we have Deep Clean Day. Sister Budge loves a clean apartment so  we're going to spend the entire day in our apartments cleaning a years worth of buildup and grossness. Our apartment is going to be holy ground when we're done with it! The next day is New Years day. We're going to be spending the day as a mission studying the Book of Mormon. A few of us in the Apartment have decided to try to read it from cover to cover in a day. It'll be some of the most dedicated study I've ever done but I'm expecting to learn a lot. I'll update you with the results next week!

Well I'm out of time once again. I love you all!
Have a Happy New Year!
I'm excited to hear from all of you in 2014.
What are some of your New Years Resolutions?

Monday, December 16, 2013

Quick Note

Main update for the week is that I am now a Zone Leader with Elder Norman whilst training Elder Hansen. Elder Day is part of the same apartment. Elder Young transfered to Togane. Elder Norman and I are zone leaders of the biggest zone in the mission. 35 missionaries. It's amazing but I'll tell you what it's stressful. I've been blessed with a cool head. I'm going to need it. There is a lot of work ahead of me. 2 zone training meetings. 4 district meetings a week. 11 exchanges and that doesn't include nightly reports and weekly conference calls. I'm a leader in the biggest zone in the most densly populated mission in the world. I feel like i'm doing something so much bigger than myself. It's great I don't have time to think of myself at all. It's exhausting, but the miracles are still coming! One of our friends is going to be baptized on the 29th of this month! I'm so excited for him. He's such a solid investigator he'll be an amazing member!

I know I promised to send pictures but transfer weeks are just too busy. I'll try to get some in next week and send a good blast mail. Next week I may just sacrifice mail time for calling time however. Um the later you do it the better probably. I'm thinking that if you try to do it at 5:30 there it's like 8:30 am here, which is kind of pushing it. We can see though. I'll send you an email during the week to solidify times. :) I'm excited and nervous.

Well gotta go mom. Give the family my love. I'll talk to you all next week!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Tall Towers

Well..transfer calls are here again. I can't believe it's been six weeks already! I feel like this past transfer went by way too quickly. It's been a blast though, I've spent almost the entire transer teaching people. I love it. I wouldn't want it any other way. It's been a busy week for us here in Matsudo as we try to keep up with the changing missionary life. Not only that but our Okinawan friend Katsuyuki is getting Baptized on the 22nd of this month! We only found him a week ago and he's doing amazing! He's progressing so quickly! The only issue right now is that he can't get work off on Sundays yet. He wants to though so we're praying that he'll be able to get work off and come to church. He'd be such a strong member of the ward, we need more people like him! We're looking forward to seeing our new best friend enter the waters of Baptism here in Matsudo this time. The White Christmas miracle is slowly but surely becoming a reality for the whole mission. Amazing things are happening! We still have 2 weeks left on the clock and we're all expecting the work to simply explode! This transfer is going to be a fun one! I'm going to continue being a Zone Leader with Elder Norman who is going to be my new companion and I'll be training for the fourth time. Elder Day and Elder Young will no Longer be my companions. Chiba zone split this transfer (Saitama also had to split) so Chiba South will now be his new Zone. Elder Day will however stay in the same apartment and be companions with another missionary. The Sisters also expanded. Matsudo will have 4 Sisters and 5 Elders. 9 Missionaries for one ward!! I'm not sure how many missionaries are in Matsudo Zone but it's close 35.. crazy. With the help of another companionship in Matsudo we'll really be able to get some good work done! I'm excited to see what happens!

Today I had the cool opportunity to go the the tallest tower in the world. The Tokyo Skytree!! You would not believe how tall it is. It's 634 Meters tall. I was able to stand at 451 Meters. From that high up you can see all of Tokyo. It goes on forever!! It's really such a cool city to live in. It's ridiculous how many people live here but still it's a blast! It isn't quite like home though. We went with Takuya. Our friend who just got baptized in Koiwa. He's the man seriously. It was a good relaxing p-day before the transfer picks up yet again.
Well that's all for the week! I'll be sure to update you on more exciting changes next week!

Stay tuned!
Love from Tokyo,