Monday, February 22, 2016

A Baptism, A Bullet Train and A Lot of Crazy Japanese Kids

Hello from Nippon! 

This missionary life rocks. I'm a fan. You all should try it some time.

Notes on the Week
  • 村石さん was baptized!!!!: A miracle is the only way to describe the change that has taken place in this mans life over the past few months. Madson Choro (my trainer/1st companion) and I found Murashi San last November while talking to people in the streets. When we first met him, he had long, scruffy hair and quite the beard. He had just come home from work and had some time to talk. We ended up getting his phone number, but honestly didn't think to much of it. Over next few days, we tried to call him, but no luck. About a month later, we felt we should call him again, and man am I glad we listened to that prompting. He said he wanted to meet and we set up an appointment at the church. We then started meeting with him twice per week and teaching him the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He's a super fast talker so it took me awhile to understand what he was saying (I still only catch about 20%), but with the help of incredible member joints, he was able to understand the good in the Gospel, how he can be cleansed from sin and feel joy in this life, and how he can achieve eternal life in the life to come. He was baptized this past Sunday morning at 0800 by my companion, and then given the gift of the Holy Ghost later that day (see https://www.mormon.org/blog/gospel-of-christ-part-3-baptism for more information on baptism). He came to the baptism that day in a ridiculously suteki suit (before he always wore jeans to church). Watching his life brighten up as he has recognized the help of God in his life has been a privilege I'll never forget. Why would a 100% normal 65 year old Japanese man listen over and over to two 20-ish year old American punks who can barely even speak his language, and then completely change his lifestyle and life views all in about two months? Well, it's actually quite simple. God.
  • A trip down to Fukuoka on a SHINKANSEN (bullet train!!!!!): Every so often, one of the leaders from our church tours around Japan and gives trainings to the missionaries. This past week, we got to head to Fukuoka with about half of the mission (100 or so missionaries) and hear from Elder Yamashita of the first quorum of the 70 (If we compare the leadership of the church to American policies, think of him as a senator). He's pretty incredible. His English was actually pretty good for living in Japan his entire life. I also got t see a bunch of MTC friends, as well as play an arrangement of "Come Follow Me" for it. While the training itself was great, the highlight might have very well been riding the bullet train down to Fukuoka. They go sooooooo fast. See the video below.

Video and Invitation for the Week
I think I might have shared this a few months ago, but it is short, simple, and worth watching again. Please watch and share!


Pictures for the Week.

For some reason the quality has been bad when I try to attach pictures, so I'm putting them all in a PDF for now. Hopefully the resolution is better.
1. We got to teach children's English class this week to a member's kids and their friends!!! So fun!



2. Pictures of the bullet train.  (Note from the editor ... this picture was missing from Elder Colton's email)



3. The baptism!!



4. Video of the train (real speed).

video


Elder Kevin Cash Colton
Japan Fukuoka Mission

ケビン C. コルトン 長老
日本福岡伝道部

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