Sunday, September 25, 2016

Week 5 in Okinawa

Hello :) 
Sometimes I am really good at recording in my journal and planner the things that happen throughout the week, and sometimes I'm not. This week was a week where I wasn't good at all. I'll try to remember
Tuesday- we went to Okinawa World! We didn't have a ton of time sadly, so we actually missed a bunch of the really cool stuff, especially the souvenirs. But it was probably better that way, because I know I would have bought something I didn't need. We went to a snake show though! And at the end we got to be wrapped around with a huge snake if we wanted to. So.. I did. See attached picture :)
Wednesday- it was a pretty normal day. Nothing too exciting. We went over to a members house whose husband is in the special forces. That was pretty crazy. She said she rarely ever knows where he actually travels to, but he's been all over the place. Super cool, but also would be so hard I feel like to be married to someone who has a job like that. She has a beautiful new baby though. 
Thursday- also pretty normal. We had weekly planning, a lesson with our investigator Chisa, and then Eikaiwa. 
Friday- went and visited a less active, who I totally love. She is so cute and obsessed with books and has two huge dogs. I loved being in her house. Her dogs are just crazy big and both wanted to sit on our laps. One was literally my size but kept trying to get on my lap. Haha it was so cute. 
Saturday- we had a couple of no show return appointments and we went to go get dinner with a YSA in our ward. She is awesome, so bubbly and positive. She asked if she could go proselyte with us.. but she doesn't speak Japanese. Haha and all we do is speak Japanese. But maybe if we could find some American housing. 
Sunday- church as usual. We are teaching a 7 year old who is about to be baptized the lessons. So every week we meet with her. And then we had dinner with a family in the American branch. This lady is seriously superwoman. She has five kids under the age of 10. Her youngest is about a year old. And her husband just left on leave about 4 months ago for the air force for a whole year to a place near Saudi Arabia. She lives in Japan, nowhere near family. And her kids are crazy, lots of energy and all over the place! But she is amazing. And her family is amazing. When it was time to share our message, they all sat down very quietly and listened and then answered our questions. I could tell this mom was so tired, but she sat there with a smile on her face, teasing her kids and asking us all these questions to get to know us. I'm constantly amazed at members. All the members here have so much faith and work so hard to share the gospel. I honestly just feel so humbled and grateful to be around them. 
Anyway, I know I talk about members every week! Sorry!
Anyway, today we are going to the beach. It's kind of windy, but hopefully it won't rain! 
Talk to you next week!
White 姉妹

Week 4 in Okinawa

This week was a really good. I had some ups and downs. It's hard to
hear sad news from home, but I am constantly reminded and amazed at
the plan of salvation and Gods plan for us. It was a good week to be
reminded of that and how grateful I am for the atonement. I am so
grateful for our trials. They are so hard and sometimes it seems more
than we can bear, but God is driving us forth to who we are meant to
be. I have so much hope and gratitude because of this gospel. No
matter what happens, because of Jesus Christ, it will be okay.
Monday- we went to Shuri Castle. It was way fun and I'll attach pictures :)

Tuesday- we had district meeting and are starting to put together a
member book. This area is a first, but it doesn't have a member book!
At all. So we don't even know who is in the ward. We also have records
of 600 people in the ward, and definitely not that many come to
church. So lots of less active's to work with, and figuring out who is
who. Usually every area has one.. I don't know where this one went so
we all started from scratch. It's going to be a huge project. Sigh.

Wednesday-we worked some more on the member book and then went over to
a members house for dinner. More on my thoughts of all these members
later, but seriously. Amazing people.

Thursday- was weekly planning, and another member dinner and we took a
taxi to Naha for splits with the STL's. The only way to get over there
is to take a taxi. Super expensive but literally nothing you can do.

Friday- there had been talk that a typhoon was coming on Friday all
week. But nothing happened. Apparently it missed us. We just got down
poured on a couple times. And I got to dendo with Millet Shimai. She
is so cute. I had so much fun with her.

Saturday- we had a full day of dendo!! we went to a house and knocked
on the door, but nobody came out. But there was a cat just hanging out
at the door, and it was just the sweetest so I started playing with it
and picked it up, and was pretending to take it with me to my
companion when the WHOLE FAMILY came out and was like.. Why are you
taking our cat? Haha.. Super awkward, way funny.

Sunday- oh man, Sunday was literally the best this week. I love love
Sunday's here. I go to two wards meaning 6 hours of straight church.
But it's so good. We have this super super old lady in our Japanese
Ward that comes to our gospel principals class. She is easily my
favorite person in this area. She is so sweet and so funny! And she
speaks pretty good English when she wants to. But in gospel principals
class she is the best. I don't know how long she has been a member but
she acts like everything she is hearing is for the first time, and it
amazes her! She's like the perfect audience plant for our
investigators. The teacher will say something and she will ooh and aww
and say "really? That's amazing!" And it's always at the perfect
times. She takes extensive notes and when someone asks a question
she's always nodding and saying, "ooh that's a good question" and will
look at the person who said it and say "good question, good
question.." it makes the information that's being taught so much more
interesting and a hundred times more funny. I love her so much. She
has got to be like 90 years old, and she still loves the gospel so
much. I mean she might have memory loss.. But she knows that it's
important to study the gospel. People like that make me so happy.

Monday- we had interviews with our mission president, which is why
p-day is again on Tuesday. It was way good. I love seeing my mission
president! He's just a good person.
But back to talking about members...
I have mentioned this before.. Like a ton of times. But I love members
so much. Sometimes I'm in awe of how strong and amazing these people
here are. I have been so lucky lately to spend time with so many
different members of our ward, and every time I leave their home I
just think of how I hope my future family is like theirs. It's such a
blessing to have wonderful examples. We went to a members house for
dinner tonight, and we sat in this beautiful home filled with pictures
of the savior, and temples and beautiful gospel music and we discussed
how much the Savior loves us and talking about Him calming the waters.
It honestly felt like a little piece of heaven. I only met these
members just last week, but their home was filled with the spirit,
which was so inviting and full of love- it felt like I was with my
family. The experiences I've been able to have on my mission helps me
have no doubt of the love of God for His children.

Anyway, I hope you all have a wonderful week! Thank you for all of your support!
Sister White 

Monday, September 5, 2016

Week 2 in Okinawa

Hello everyone!
Last week I didn't really write much, so this week I'll try to write
more. Holy cow. I love Okinawa so so so much. It is so beautiful! And
there are so many Americans here it is crazy. We live right next to
the military base, our chapel is right next to the base line. We
basically go on base every other day. It's amazing. It's like walking
into a little America. Last p day we went on base to buy some
groceries (all American food what?!?) and we ended up bumping into a
less active who saw us and came up to us and basically just said, "hi
I'm a member, I'm buying all of your groceries." And then he did! He
was so kind!! Then he promised he would come to church on Sunday (he
didn't.. But I have to give him a thank you card so we'll get to him
somehow.) then right after that a lady came running up to us and told
us she was a member and had just moved to Japan and didn't know where
church was or anything. She just seemed like she needed to talk, she
was really stressed out. We talked to her for a little bit and gave
her our number and the church address and then we saw her at church on
Sunday and she looked a lot less stressed. We also bumped into two of
our other members that day just in the grocery store haha. It was so
fun. We also ate subway for dinner... Heaven❤️
Tuesday we had a lesson with our investigator Chisa. She is so cute.
19 years old, way interested in our lessons. She understands some of
the Book of Mormon better than I do. She expounded on 2 Nephi chapter
2 so much that I saw it in a different light. It was amazing. She's
way smart. We taught her about fasting and the word of wisdom and when
I asked her if she would keep the word of wisdom, she looked at us,
flipped through the word of wisdom pamphlet and was like.. "Okay!" So
amazing. We also ate dinner with a member at the church and that was
way fun. I've eaten with members more here in less than 2 weeks than I
have my whole mission haha. The members here are amazing, but I am
definitely gaining weight.
Wednesday we spent time with another investigator. She is amazing, I
love her so much. We went to chili's on base (can we talk about how
HUGE the servings of food they gave us at chili's? It was so much
food, I don't know how anyone could ever eat it.) but we talked with
her about our potential as children of God. It's so funny getting on
base here. It takes like 10 minutes to get visitors on base because
they have to put us in the system and what not. My name in the system
is somehow Kiwrten White. It's on all the documents they give us to
hand in when we leave.. Haha so that's how the military knows me. We
then got dinner dropped off to us at the church by a member. They
didn't have time to eat with us, but they wanted to feed us. So much
Thursday we had weekly planning. I started feeling sick and but we had
a good day, but then on..Friday..we had zone conference and I was so
so so sick. Like I can't talk, I can't breath, my head was pounding
sick. I somehow made it through zone conference. But I was out after
that. I was sick for about a day and a half. But it worked out because
another sister was sick in my apartment so we went on splits, and our
companions were able to go out and dendo.
So Saturday was all sleeping, studying Japanese and more sleeping.
But by yesterday I felt a lot better so I got to go to church! I love
the wards here. We go to two. One is an American military branch and
the other is a Japanese Ward. It's so fun. I love it so much. It's
twice as many members that we get to be with. I love members so much.
They are so amazing here. They work so hard to do missionary work and
to help us. After sacrament meeting in the American branch, we had a
brother come up to us and ask us if we had plans for dinner yet, and
then told us we were coming to eat with him and his wife. The nicest
people ever. I introduced myself as Sister White, and then he was like
oh, I'm Brother White. Haha no relation, although he is from Highland
Utah! Super nice guy, and his wife is gorgeous. I loved them both.
They have amazing testimonies and amazing desire to do what is right.
I love what wonderful examples our members are to me. It makes me want
to be that much better of a member when I get home. They also had a
cat and a dog, that I just adored. The cat kept jumping up and sitting
on my lap. #obsessed
Anyway, I'm still a little sick today but that's okay. It's not too
bad. I don't really know what we are doing today, something to do with
a beach and a touristy place. It's so fun :)
Dendoing here is so interesting. There are a lot of off base housing
here, and you know it's American housing because it looks different
then Japanese houses. They have garages.. Not normal. Anyway so I had
to learn how to dendo in English. My first experience went a little
like this...
"Oh uh hello, my name is sister white, I'm from America... We are
missionaries of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day so
do you believe in God? " - me
"Yes, I'm Christian" -them
"Oh, wow really? No way, that's so cool, us too! Woah, okay so um, do
you belong to a church?
"I'm Catholic"
"Oh cool! そですね....uhhh"
And that is where my companion took over. I never thought I would say
that dendoing in Japanese is so so much easier, but as of now it is.
Anyway, I love Okinawa, I love being here, I love the gospel, I love
just everything. It's all amazing!
2 Nephi 28:32
The Lords hand is always outstretched to us. There is nothing we do to
make Him leave. He is simply always there. Make time for Him, and look
for how He is lengthening His arm out to you in your daily life. I
promise you He is there.

Love you all!
Sister White

Sorry, no pictures this week!

Week 1 in Okinawa

Basically I love Okinawa so so so much. Oh my gosh. It's amazing here.
I don't have a lot of time, so I'm going to just attach some pictures

Week 22 in Chikushino

We got transfer calls today!! But first I would like to share a way
funny story that happened this week. We were on our way home from the
Sapporo temple dedication with a member (also yes the dedication was
amazing!!) when we passed by this huge statue of Buddha and noticed
that his earlobes were like way big and so we wanted to know why his
earlobes were so big. One of the Shimai asked the member and she said
"why is Buddhas earlobes so big?" In Japanese. However Buddha is
Hotokesama in Japanese, not Buddha. But instead of using hotokesama
she used the English word Buddha. Buddha is very similar to Buta which
means pig. The member responded very confused and said "I have no
idea, God made it that way I guess" it wasn't until after that we
realized that she said "why are pigs earlobes so big." I love making
Japanese/English mistakes. They are always so funny!
Also I have a ton of pictures this week, and since pictures are so
much better than words, I'm just going to send those. Also I'm being
transferred to Okinawa and I can't even begin to explain how excited I
am!!! I seriously love my life!!!!! Love you all!!