Wednesday, October 16, 2013

October 14, 2013

Dear Family, 

I LOVE THIS PLACE. I am in Kariya which is about 30 minutes from Nagoya by train. It is a ward and the people are super awesome. It is the biggest area in our zone and it is sooooo diverse. We have Japanese people, Brazilians, Peruvians, Tongans.... Because this area is so diverse, Japanese is not the only language we are using. We are using Portuguese and Spanish about 40% of the day on minimum. I can HONESTLY say that this is not the language they taught me in the MTC. Unfortunately, I cannot remember any Spanish to save my life, which makes it hard to speak Portuguese. I can throw the good ol` "tudu bem" out there, but that`s all I got. My mind is experiencing all types of confusion. As if learning Japanese wasn`t bad enough, now let`s throw in 2 other languages that you will be using on a daily basis?? Yay, I am not studying Spanish or Portuguese, because I was called to preach the gospel in Japanese. But it sure does make me feel pretty helpless. Thank goodness for a Brazilian companion who can speak to these people! 

My companion is such a hard worker! I love her so much. She is the most fun, bold, hilarious person I have ever met. I cannot stop laughing all day. So just to get the image in your head... Imagine some Gaijin cruising down the streets, completely tone deaf, singing (yelling) "how great thou art" at the top of her lungs. YEAH. THAT is my companion. Boy do I love her. She also meows at anything and everything. Hahahaha. She has two transfers left. We don`t have very good Japanese, but we work so hard. She has the body of an Olympic athlete and I have never seen any human ride a bike faster in my life. I put my bike at full resistance and pedal my little heart out in attempt to keep up with her We also are always running everywhere to make appointments and such. Hahaha my body is so sore. She is from Sao Paulo- in the south - Santo Amaro . She joined the church a few years ago and then her mom joined as a result of that. The rest of her family are not members, but she has dendo fire up the wazoo. She is so bold/blunt. We were in the house of a recent convert giving a lesson and she saw a lighter. So she was like "what is this?" the girl said it was he moms. So  Sister Silva said "why?" and the girl said it was for smoking. And Sister Silva just went forward and talked about how she can`t do that in order to follow the word of wisdom.Japanese people neverrrrr do that. SO she just sees something and goes with it. SO bold, but so powerful. I am super glad that I am working with her because she is showing me how to really work hard and push myself. 

So we went to visit the house of another recent convert several times this week... I have NEVER been to such a sad home in my life. The husband died and so the mom is trying to take care of her and her sick daughter. The walls have been eaten apart by cockroaches(spelling?). So when we go, there are COCKROACHES climbing all over the floors. We have to kneel on these floors and as a result, MYBODY is swarmed in cockroaches. The first time we went I was absolutely mortified and may have considered crying. SO we were visiting and giving a lesson and we were singing a hymn for them. There was a cockroach or something that climbed up Silva Shimai`s leg. She jumped up and just started screaming and doing this hilarious dance.So we are all saying "WHAT? WHAT`S WRONG???" Hahaha so she says " I just love this song.. It`s my favorite." (She didn`t want to offend them) She was laughing so hard that she started crying and I couldn`t stop laughing either. It was the funniest thing I have EVER seen. Hahahahaha. So today we are going to clean their house and hopefully evade it of the millions of cockroaches in her apartment... We have bought so many cleaning supplies and face masks and gloves. So we have a killer p-day planned. 

We have 2 investigators and they are honestly awesome. Mayumi and Suzuki san. They both came through member referrals so we are super blessed to have them. I am so excited to see where they go this transfer. One is reading the book of mormon every single day and just has so many desires to understand the gospel. She is the type of investigator I always dreamed of. 

We got to watch General Conference this weekend! Because our ward is so diverse I got to watch it in English. I am so glad because I would not have gotten anything out of it if it was in Japanese. I still have such a hard time understanding things.  

We are trying to find new investigators. It is really hard, but we are talking to everyone and anyone who will listen. We have found several PIs this week that we will follow up on next week. Last night we were walking to a Less active members house and we ran into this Former Investigator of the Elders. He invited us into his home with his wife. He has met on and off with the missionaries for 6 years. So we talked to him and his wife and we are hoping that we can get to know her better so we can teach her. But we then talked to him about the church and what he believes. He comes almost every single week! He says that the book of mormon is the absolute truth and he loves it and thinks it is beautiful.. He believes in Joseph Smith, but he doesn`t believe in God. I have never been so confused by a person`s train of thought in my life. So I just wanted to share that because I thought it was interesting. The Book of Mormon helps people to understand who God is and develop a relationship with Him, but you have to have the right intent about it. 

This week has been amazing, I am so excited to finally have the opportunity to really work hard! We have faith and we know that there are people ready to hear the gospel. We are going to work ceaselessly all day until we find them! I might not be the best at writing letters this transfer because our Pdays are booked and we don`t even go grocery shopping, but I send lots of love! 


Sister Crofts. 

Covering the backpack. Nothing but class! 
The main dish was amazing, but the soup and side made me gag. 
The pad Silva Shimai made with her clothes while we wait for more futons for our apartment. 
Everyone is crazy about Disney in Japan. 

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