This week was Baby Girl, Suzuki shimais birthday, yay 21!!!!!!! On Wednesday the chorotachi were the best and threw Suzuki shimai and I a surprise birthday party since we have both of our birthdays within the same month, it was so cute, she was so surprised and cried so much afterward. Fun fact about Suzuki shimai: she talks in her sleep, she loved the party so much that she was thanking everyone way politely in her sleep, “domo arigatou gozaimasu” I thought she and Reeves Shimai were up late talking, but nope crazy girl talks in her sleep, way funny!! This week we also had zone conference, always such a treat to be spiritually fed by president and sister wada and the assistants. Also went on splits to kofu with kaizaki shimai, which is two hours by train from Hachioji and like 30 bucks, way cray but good dendo fun with kaizaki shimai on the longest train rides ever!
Ok so I know I say this about every ward, but Hachioji ward has some killer member missionaries. The dendo Fire here is exhilarating. This week we went out with mori shimai, a member here in Hachioji ward who recently moved here from kichijoji. Well she’s been given us a whole bunch of friends names, so we set out to dendo with her. And mori shimai did not waste a single minute, she talked to every person we passed on the street. Oh man was it a sight to see,So with two gaijin, a sweet little nihonjin, and another Japanese woman with a bag full of vegetables and church fliers chasing down moms and little boys on their bikes trying to talk to them, most people would be terrified at us, but we talked to so many people and not only shared Mori Shimai’s vegetables but with her faith and help as a member we were able to witness some great miracles that day. We ended up not visiting anyone of her friends and got a little lost along the way and she felt terrible, but she didn’t let that get her down she talked to everyone. As we were trying to find one lady we had housed into, we turn around and Mori Shimai is struggling to talk to a Nepalese woman who clearly spoke no Japanese. As we looked closely we realized we had met this Nepalese woman one night on our way home who we didn’t get to say very much, but thanks to mori shimai we were reunited with Rujana once more. As we talked with her, she expressed that she had some interest and we exchanged numbers and will hopefully be seeing her again. But the miracles didn’t stop there, we continued talking to everyone, and when Mori Shimai talks to people you’re not sure if she does know them because she seems to treat everyone as if they were age old friends. We talked to a sweet mom and her daughter, turns out they had a lot of interest and gratefully accepted the Book of Mormon. I think every ward should have a mori shimai in their ward, she is such a wonderful example to me of the missionary I aspire to be. As we walked home, asked her how she can be so friendly with everyone and why is she so happy, she said she is so grateful for missionaries and them giving her a chance and this gift of the gospel, how could she not share something so good, that would be selfish.mShe is amazing, I think we can all learn from mori shimai, that being truly grateful for something is sharing it with others. I wish we could go out and dendo with members everyday, members have a special power that can help change the hearts of those we teach as missionaries. I strongly encourage the garden grove youth to get out there with the missionaries, and share the light you have been blessed with, it only grows stronger and brighter the more you give it away.
Another way members have helped in the work of salvation is with many recent converts and less actives. I feel like hachioji’s motto is “no member left behind” they never forget about one soul, we have a couple recent converts that have been going through some rough times and have gotten a little lost along the way, but as we have been able to contact and visit with them, and most importantly the outpouring of love from the members to go out and rescue the 1, we had two less actives come back to church and be welcomed with open arms. Also probably the best birthday present yet to come is, this Saturday Yamauchi Shimai will be going into the temple. We taught her about temple work and our role in helping our family and friends partake in the goodness of the gospel with us and she was eager and ready to get to work on it. Before sister reeves and I had talked about how cool it would have been if someone was baptized on my birthday, and it turns out through yamauchi shimais faith and love for the gospel, she will be helping many others on the other side of the veil enter into the waters of baptism on my birthday. The gospel is truly exciting! Living and loving life here in Hachioji!! Have a wonderful week!!
Sister Natalie Wilson