I'm off to serve an LDS mission in Kobe, Japan from June 2015 to December 2016. My mom will be keeping this blog updated with my latest letters, photos, adventures, etc.! Also I would LOVE to hear from everyone - katya.wagstaff@myldsmail.net

Monday, May 2, 2016

Mon. May 2, 2016

I'm working on having a brightness of hope this transfer, so of course this week, there were sometimes where it looked a little hopeless BUT we will be able to see a baptism here before the Elder Stevenson deadline...keeping hope and working hard!

Monday even though no one was home and weren't able to teach much, we met a PI leaving to go toward and were able to set an appt later in the week!

Tuesday REALLY COOL! Hopefully you can follow this, the details show God's perfect timing- So we went to the church to teach a less active, but location changed to a member's house nearby and the less active was late and didn't know where, so we waited for her at the church a bit. Since we had a little time at the church with wifi, I checked my email and found out about my Dad's new job working for the temple dept.  Right after that Tsuruta Shimai came and we went to the Yoshikawa's to teach about the temple and getting ready to go soon! So I was able to testify of what a blessing the temple has been for my family and strengthen her in her resolve to go to the
temple even though there are different obstacles in the way (which P.S. There are always obstacles!)- so really good lesson, really perfect timing.

After that we spent the rest of the day with our ward mission leader, Choro Tachi and an RM- lots of LA's and finding!

Wednesday morning was a flower garden activity with the RS...lots of standing around listening to a guide talk about plants in Japanese, no idea but good bonding with the RS! Next Soga Shimai (our wonderful Phillapina member!) drove us around to different LA's she knew that lived pretty far, plus showed us wherever friend lives that she wants us to start teaching! Then later we went over to a lady interested in English and really really could use the gospel in her life but doesn't realize it- super fancy house, she had tea time set for us (so we had to introduce the Word of Wisdom pretty fast) and we got to talk about what we're doing here and why we want to be here, plus translate a letter from her friend...super interesting person! I really hope she'll listen to our message officially!

Later made tempura with the youth for their mutual night- guess what? Battered and fried leaves are pretty good!

Thursday we koukaned (exchange) with Wakayama sisters- I was with Manwill Shimai! We had the same trainer and she's a really hard worker, lots of fun and miracles though it rained the whole time. We got 2 new investigators from visiting PI's and a referral! Lots of biking (she was a really good sport about the hills since it was her first time!) Also got to drop by some members and Mogi (practice lesson?) with them- good tips on teaching Japanese people and good kanke with these really amazing members. Also of course...the selfie stick.

Friday we went to Hashimoto for District Meeting and after to their branch's barbecue- it's been a while since I've been with a little branch, that was fun! They don't have sister missionaries in their branch, so for the short time we were there we tried to help- I talked with a mom from Eikaiwa who came, really cute! 
2 special lessons after- helped one old less-active move some things around in her apartment then ate and taught a little. She's not very connected with the church right now, but all good things come of God and she showed us some of her calligraphy (she's professional)- beautiful words, sorry the English translation isn't as good, and also we were able to sing a hymn together - there was a really sweet spirit there. 

After we visited a new investigator family with Soga Shimai- MIRACLE time: we found his family housing a while ago- nothing super special, we housed and they said we could come back, they were busy for actual lessons but finally set an appt and we visited and ended up meeting the whole family last week. While we were there they told us they know Soga Shimai and love her, so this week of course we brought Soga Shimai to doseki. Not only do they know her, they are like family! They were neighbors years ago and when their kids were young, she babysat them a lot and they are together, etc- just good neighbor/friends, the mom came to church with Soga Shimai once. But that was about 7ish years ago and they lost contact. So Friday they were reunited, that was really good- also we could definitely tell a difference in that they were more open to listening to our message and at the end we prayed together and they were all totally into it. 

Saturday we had cancelled lessons, but thankfully Osumi San (Phillipina with lots of potential!) was still able to meet and of course Soga Shimai came with us! She didn't really accept a baptismal commitment, but she didn't shut it down, so even though the lesson was a little mentally spiritually exhausting, there's still lots of hope! Plus after the lesson she sent a nice thank you text, so that's a good sign, right?

Plus really good Indo Curry at night with another exchange student friend of Steere Shimai!

Sunday- discouraging that some people who said they would come to church but didn't show, BUT then one of our less active's came a little late to Sunday School and RS and had really tried to make it for Sacrament but couldn't, that was really uplifting. The rest of the day people home, not home but met 2 LA's for the first time! Ended with some streeting by Sayama Lake and we were EXHAUSTED but pushed each other to each keep stopping people and definitely had more energy by the end- that's the interesting thing, we always have enough energy to dendo even if we got lost and went over waaay too many hills or also lost our bike key and had to go back to find it- there's always enough energy to do God's work. 
So many times I'm reminded that this is God's work, His vineyard, we're helping His children, so therefore as we do His work, we will always receive His help. 

Love you all lots! 

Love you guys a lot a lot and I was so grateful for all the emails this week- really good, so exciting! See you next week, calling my time Monday morning at 10 AM!


Tuesday- seriously the temple miracle was really really really cool. Tsuruta Shimai (our LA) was struggling with obstacles (mainly non-member family) that seemed to be getting in e way of going to the temple, but because of your experience, able to testify of a part in the temple prep book- temple blessings go far beyond the time we are
inside, and we are blessed spiritually and temporally. Really cool. 

Wednesday with Takehashi San (English interest). Oh my goodness, she has the coolest job ever and I want to stay in contact with her. She'sthe music producer for the Ritz Carlton in Osaka. So does that give you an idea of how fancy she and her house were? Yeah scary fancy as in we didn't dare use a fork until we watched her use it so that we could use it right. Anyways, I was able to talk with her about music and how it would be a dream to sing at the Ritz Carlton. But how on Earth to help her become an investigator, accept the gospel because she really needs it but doesn't really want it/doesn't have time? Figuring that out, or else sadly we would have to let her go, butshe's a super interesting person. Not sure what I need to explain, but FYI big Broadway people do concerts at Ritz Carlton when they aren't in a show or when they have a break, just a side thing.

Saturday lesson with Osumi...Phillipina, which means the lesson is in English and she has a Christian background. I love her lots, but in some ways I'm very grateful to mostly be teaching people who don't
know because her questions were hard! To her, how you act and treat others, who you are as a person is most important. So she's a bit skeptical about reading scriptures/going to church/getting baptized because (what I understood- she's super complex so lots I don't understand) but those things are what hypocrites do- Sunday Mormons- that kind of thing? Anyways, so we are working overtime trying to show by example that we do live our beliefs and not just teach them.

Seriously though she's close-basically like once she says she will get baptized (current status is I don't know all that Mormons believe and don't want to make a promise I might later break/not want to keep) she'll get baptized.
Dang, baptisms are hard work- this will be a miracle with blood, sweat and tears because it's not easy! (Very worth it, very worth it)

Next little thing is humility, always learning humility. I've really been trying to be consistent about bearing testimony every fast Sunday, so I went up, but the words were hard to say- Japanese wasn't coming . I guess that's where I really really do want to say exactly what I feel, mean, not just the vocab I have, but it's not all there.That's where I have really loved Elder Holland's talk from conference.
Did I try? Yes.

And today we went to downtown Osaka- I love the city! Went to a big high rise to this famous cake buffet, Sweets Paradise. So good, but funny enough even though there was tons of cake (really good, ate a
lot of different kinds) liked the popcorn and Italian sodas most.

Wagstaff 姉妹

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