October 20, 2013

Life in Akita as a Missionary
I am so excited to share about this past week! All of us 9 missionaries worked with our amazing Tongan friend and member sister Lita to put this Halloween party together for Saturday. We had all fasted the same day to be able to accomplish our goal of having 50 people with 20 non members come. Through out this past week we called and visited many of the members and it seemed that many members had other plans and wouldn’t be able to come. Every day sister Stevenson and I prayed that we would still be able to accomplish our goal. I knew that through our faith the Lord would give us this goal. As the week went on other things happened, like going to another Tongan families for dinner. There’s two Tongan families in this ward, the one all of us 9 missionaries went to for dinner is a less active family. It’s hard because the dad is a professional rugby player and has games on Sunday and the mom doesn’t speak Japanese so doesn’t understand when she comes to Church. It was so fun having dinner though at their house. Very loud, lot’s of laughing, and just made me miss my fun family. Their three boys are crazy, the youngest is 3 and is a wild child! He looks like a little jungle boy with long curly hair and is adorable. I pray us missionaries will be able to continue to serve this family and love them.
We had only one lesson this week! That sounds so pathetic, but we were working so hard trying to get things ready for this Halloween party that all other things seemed to be put aside. I almost felt we should still be going out and trying to find more people to teach, but sister Stevenson wanted to focus more on making decorations for the party. Us missionaries are trying to figure out how to work more with the members so we won’t seem so much like a party planning committee. Our numbers this week for lessons and PI’s was the lowest they’ve ever been. We had an awesome lesson with Chiemi though and talked about faith in Jesus Christ and I drew a picture of a seed growing into a tree from Alma 32. She is so amazing and her faith is so strong. I can’t wait for her to be able to be baptized. We had a typhoon on Wednesday and had to stay in our apartment all day! That’s one of the reasons our numbers were low because we didn’t get to go out and talk to anyone. The weather cleared up by the evening and we were able to do English class. We had the lowest turn up of students ever! It seemed that this week was just not progressing and everything was weighing on the Halloween party.
Then Saturday came! We started off the day with all of us missionaries going to Akita University’s open campus. There were lot’s of booths of different foods students made and our ward mission leader is an English teacher so he had a booth too. When all us missionaries get together it seems we hide inside and don’t talk and it kind of bothers me. I felt like the only one who wanted to go talk to people. Sister Stevenson was clinging to the other Japanese companion sister Nakaima and didn’t want to talk to anyone. I tried to find opportunities to talk to others and met a girl from Cambodia. Her name’s Linda and I told her about my cousins Emily and Adam going to Cambodia. She was so kind and sister Kirby and I invited her to our Halloween party that night. She said she might come.
We had spent 3 hours all of us missionaries decorating and us sisters made lots of egg and tuna sandwiches. We were all anticipating seeing how many people showed. It was a miracle!!!
54 people came and 21 of them were not members! What a blessing! Almost every one that came had a costume and all of us missionaries had prepared different fun games in each room. It was definitely an answer to our prayers and fasting. The Lord will always answer your prayers.
Members that came brought friends and I was amazed to see the huge turn out. Linda who we had met earlier that day came!
I am so excited for Saturday! Ishida who I met on the street last month in getting baptized! We taught him a few lessons and had to pass him to the elders but I still feel he’s like my investigator. He’s such an amazing 18 year old kid. His family drinks tea every meal and he’s given up drinking tea all together. He is truly becoming converted to the Lord.
This is my last week of training. I don’t know if I’ll stay in Akita or go somewhere else. It’s probably my last week with my trainer. I was moved to tears this morning as I watched a DVD called “The District”. These missionaries talked of their love for their companions and I felt this overwhelming love for my trainer sister Stevenson. We may have had our times of hardship but we’ve been through a lot together and I truly love her.
Sister Butler

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