Monday, February 27, 2017

Porcupines, Pandas, and Pangolins

       Well this week was really fast. We did a lot of fun stuff and had a lot of appointments with members. Especially yesterday. We had a lot of places that we needed to go and didn't really have to ever plan what we were going to do.

        One of the fun things that we did this week was going to the eki and playing the guitar on Tuesday. At the beginning of the week I had a cold, and it was cold, so singing for a couple of hours in the wind made me lose my voice. It was a weird experience not really being able to talk when that's really all we do all day every day.

        Then another thing that we did was of course eikaiwa. The eikaiwa here is really fun and there are a lot of people that are really good. And some new people came! So that was really fun. After eikaiwa, one of the people that came wanted to take pictures with us. #Japan So we took a lot of pictures with her. Some of them will be included.

        Then on Thursday, we had signed up to talk about eikaiwa on the radio. It was really hard, but fun. Elder Otsu said that he wished that I had talked more, but my throat hurt and I didn't understand
what the guy was saying...they talk a lot different on the radio than in a normal conversation.

        Also we got to have a ping pong night on Friday night. I was reminded once again how bad I am at ping pong. I can hold my own against missionaries, but not the people that come to ping pong activities. Because they actually like it.

        Then on Saturday, we got to finally have our first lesson with a non-member! We went to teach her daughter English, but then we still got to talk about God and prophets.  It was really good and she had some good interest in the message.

        We also were able to find some people through calling all the people in our phone and the other Elders gave us all their investigators that need someone that speaks English for the lessons, and so now we have people to focus on! We are really excited.

        We also have been teaching all the members about member missionary work and the ward is going crazy with it! Ichinomiya is awesome.

        Also last night we had an awesome FHE with the Ward Mission Leader and it was super fun. His wife is also a really good cook. We were all really full at the end and biking home was not the most fun thing in the world.

        Anyway, I hope that you all had a great week and that your hair is really cool.

Elder Richardson

 Pictures (what you all really look at)
1-3. After Eikaiwa with Chiaki
4. DTM from Elder
5. *Bonus Pic*


Sunday, February 19, 2017

Don't breathe in...there are little hairs about

Well this week was 

First off on Monday, we had our good ol' pday activities and stuff. Then after dinner we started to tackle the "PI" list in our phone. For some reason none of the people in our phone showed up on our iPads, so we get to put all of them in.  We did that for a little bit went around town and found a Baskin Robbins. And then we came back for the night. That was when the fun started. Elder Whited needed a haircut for Saturday. Well, we are both poor and cheap missionaries, so he asked me to cut his hair. I have had the experience with Elder Greer doing this, but I only did the sides and back. It turned out ok, but not the best. This time I was to do the whole thing. So at first we didn't have clippers, but then the other Elders got home (right below us) and we asked if we could borrow theirs. Overall, I didn't do that bad of a job. There will be pictures and such at the end. 

Also we spent some time to clean this apartment on Monday and I just have to say that if you leave windows and a shower doing nothing for months, it is just nasty. Also the amount of long hairs all over the place is incredible. I am so glad we have dark floors. 

Then on Tuesday, we got to go try our hand at badminton and, just as always, I was pretty bad at it. But it was way fun. We also went around and discovered our area that day. 

On Wednesday, we have lots of eikaiwa, so it feels like we pretty much just did that. I really like eikaiwa though, so it was great. Also we had interviews with President Ishii, so it was a good day. 

Then on Thursday we just had planning in the afternoon and we went to get some things from daiso that were necessary to get. That night however, we went and played volleyball. Or at least kind of. It was soft volleyball. So kind of like tiny volleyball, with a tiny net, and a partially inflated dodgeball. So I actually could kind of spike it. But not that well still. It was pretty fun though, and now they are taking a break, (It is a pretty intense sport, they will need a month or so of break) and we will have to go back. Elder Kariya really likes sports dendo, so we have been doing a lot of that here. Good way to find people. 

Then on Friday, we cleaned our apartment because the Elders from Komatsu were coming down to stay the night for the conference the next day. We also had an awesome member appointment and it was amazing. This is literally the best ward in the history of ever. We talked about member missionary work and they started to share about how they had started to introduce some of their friends to the gospel the week before! Without being asked to share! And the whole ward is like that. It is super nice. Then we had ping pong night and we forgot to tell lots of people that we were starting it up, so only some eikaiwa students came and our ward mission leader happened to show up by chance. Then we went and got the Elders from the eki. That was a fun night. We were all getting ready for the conference and ironing our shirts and such. It was fun to get to see those two again. (They were in the same zone as Elder Whited and me last transfer). 

Then on Saturday we had our mission conference. It was super nice to see all the missionaries that I know and to meet some new ones. And one of the new bean-chans is from West Valley and knows some of my friends from high school. That was weird. Also this was probably the last time that I will see any of the sisters that I came out with until after the end. It was pretty sad and I will miss them. Then Elder Holland came a spoke to us, as well as Elder Yamashita and Elder Whiting from the Area Presidency. It was such a great time. He (Elder Holland) talked about the importance of loving your mission and how personal a mission actually is. And yes, he is a pulpit pounder. Then that night the other Elders' investigator, Hattori san, was baptized. He was super excited and when he walked in he asked when he gets to share his testimony. It was super cool to feel the difference of testimony of an Apostle and of a newly baptized person. But the spirit was just about as strong in the room. It was a really good day. And unfortunately, I had to play the piano for the baptism. 

Then on Sunday, we got to go with the Young Men for Priesthood meeting. It was a super good lesson and I really like the Young Men. They are all really solid and they want to work hard. It was cool to see how comfortable they are with inviting someone in to their classroom. And the other Elders' investigator iori came and he had a great time I think. 

I love the gospel and all the amazing opportunities that we have from it. Jesus is the Christ and truly suffered for our sins. Through the Atonement of Christ we can really do anything. I am amazed at how we can always start over and the amazing power that we get from Christ. We can truly use the Atonement for our life. Not only just in forgiving our sins and overcoming our weaknesses, but we use the power of the Atonement for everything if we try. We can use it to learn to ride a bicycle, to speak Japanese, to read our scriptures, to pass our math test, or to just be able to forgive someone who did us wrong. Truly it is amazing. 

I will end with a quote from Confucius, "To be wronged or robbed is nothing unless you continue to remember it."

I hope you all have a great week. 

Elder Richardson

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Once Upon a Time. . .

Hello from Ichinomiya!

Well, as you know, I was transferred so I am now in a new place (well I have been here before multiple times) and with a new companion (Elder Whited). So this week was pretty fun. Last Monday was my last day in Nanao and I spent that night with my chums Mario and Nishikawa. Always a good time. Then on Tuesday morning I started my train rides. Luckily, it wasn't nearly as long as last time and I was able to get here in just under 6 hours.

Well the main things that happened this week were that and then on Saturday, there was a wedding reception and I actually knew one of the people that got married! He is from Gifu ward! So I saw a lot of members that I know and that was really fun. There will pretty much only be pictures of the reception because that was all that we really did other that update records and figure out what we are doing here.

Well, that happened and so we got to meet a lot of the members before Sunday and so now we really feel like we know this ward just after a week. It was pretty fun and we got to make and eat some good food.

I hope that you had and have a great week! Sorry this one was short, but we didn't get to do much!

Later then,
Elder Richardson
 1) Elder Whited, the bride and groom, and me
2) Everyone

3) Elder Kariya and Elder Otsu (The other Ichinomiya Elders) during set up

Monday, February 6, 2017

A Missionary's Lament

Well, once again, I will transfer. Truly it is a bittersweet feeling to leave Nanao. I have learned so many things here and have really grown to know the people here (there weren't very many of them so it wasn't too difficult). Like the areas before, I am ready to leave when I do, but I don't want to go. Also, like the areas before, when the work starts to pick up a little bit, I leave. Such is the curse of
Elder Richardson.

However there is some rather exciting news. I get to go to the wonderful land of Ichinomiya! I am opening a second set of Elders there with the Legendary Elder Whited (the only person that you will
ever meet from North Dakota). I am really excited! We will be in the same district as my beloved Gifu! My bean-chan area!

Well, this last week in Nanao (king of areas), was rather exciting. We got to go visit an unknown member. By unknown I mean that we only had the last name, phone number, and address. We tried to go last week, but she was not there and later she mailed us and we got to set up an appointment. On Sunday, the Branch President was really surprised because not many missionaries can get in the house apparently. Well we got in and got a promise that she will come to eikaiwa from now on.

Also another thing that happened this week was that our eikaiwa class was super awesome! By that I mean that many people came and it was a great way to start the new course that we are changing to.

Then on Saturday we had a super awesome thing happen! We had transfer calls (texts), and then we had to catch a train to Anamizu to meet our good buddy Hiro. He was super excited to see us again (he had been traveling since the end of December, so it had been a while) and we were excited as well! He said that if we didn't have plans then we should go up to his school and meet some of his friends. So we went up and at first we went into the teacher's lounge (he is an assistant in the main office so we could do that) and met a lot of the teachers. And they were all fluent in English. Then Hiro wanted to take us to lunch and then come back and so we went out and right as we were
leaving one of his friends came up and Hiro introduced us. His name is Yusuke. He is also nearly fluent in English. And one of the first things he said to us is that he is really interested in Christianity
and actually wants to convert. So needless to say, we gave him a pamphlet and a Book of Mormon.  Then we went to this awesome, really out of the way, restaurant. There will be a video of one of the
amazing things that we discovered there. Well later, we ended up back at the school and we had a mini eikaiwa that involved a lot of card games and magic. Yusuke and Hiro essentially invited a few of their friends to come and speak English with us. A few people came and then people had to do things and it ended up being us and only a few people. It was super fun!

Then church was kind of sad and they even played "God be with you till we meet again" for the closing hymn. Pretty funny. Then packing and cleaning really got going and it was a lot harder to pack this time because instead of having a box that I could ship, I have to ship the guitar so I had to figure out how to fit all of my books and such in my suitcases with my clothes. It wasn't too hard. I just am leaving some extra sweaters that I acquired and some coats that I never wear. (>_<)

Well thats about all that happened this week. And if I missed anything, it will be in a video probably.

See you next week from the paradise city.

Elder Richardson

Funny sign tell you what not to do in train stations.  They are all puns.

Hiro introducing his school.

The restaurant.

The eikaiwa (not real eikaiwa) crew.

Picture Hiro took forever ago.
Hospital Eikaiwa
The promised video of the restaurant