Friday, November 11, 2011

Nov. 11, 2011

Dear Family,

I hope you're all doing great.

It's about 5:30am now and myself along with the other three in my room have our laundry going. It's already P-day again!

This week has gone well. Elder S. went home on Saturday. He'll need to go to school for a little bit and get checked out by a psychologist and neurologist if he wants to come back out. And he'll most likely go state-side. It was pretty sad to see someone go, but it was a win-win situation. He seemed very relieved and happy to be leaving. Now we have just a district of six. Our district is great. Very unified and smart. We've gone over our progress towards goals as well as re-evaluated expectations, and we're motivated to push ourselves harder. In about six weeks, preparation time is over. 19 years... and 12 weeks here.

This has been my first week as district leader. I was called on Sunday. It comes with a little more responsibility, and I'm super excited to lead my district. We have the potential to be the best Japanese district by the time we leave here! I don't remember if I told you last week, but Elder Ige and Coakley were called as zone leaders the Sunday before last. Now that our residency room has them as two zone leaders and myself as district leader, the branch presidency has asked us to use our room as an example. So we really have to keep everything perfect because people entering the MTC will be brought by to see exactly how a room should be. It's good.

We have a midterm scheduled for the 16th of November. Myself and one of our teachers collaborated a little and put it together. Just for our district. It's going to be super tough, but it's definitely motivating everyone to study a lot more! We're all excited and nervous. It'll have a bunch of vocabulary and grammar principles, a section on PMG Ch.10(teaching skills), scriptural knowledge, we'll need to recite our purpose and the First Vision in Japanese by memory, sing a few hymns in Japanese without making any language mistakes, read the sacrament prayers in Japanese smoothly, and a few other language things.

Keenan came in on Wednesday. It was pretty cool seeing him again. He's living on the second floor of our residence building. We're on the fourth. I'll be checking on him every once in a while to see how he's doing. For now we just told him to make it to Sunday. I think he'll have a lot of fun here.

Our devotional speaker this past week was Eduardo Gavarett of the Seventy. He was an interesting speaker. He spoke on being 'full' and powerful missionaries through emptying our pockets of things we don't need(sins, etc.) and filling them with power/the spirit.

The weather's getting a whole lot cooler. I took the overcoat out of the closet this week. And started using those earmuffs. It's snowed here a few times, but never really stuck. Only about an inch on the grass a few times.

How's the Maui weather been? Has it been nice and clear with the trade winds? And have the waves been up? I'm sure almost all of the missionaries here wouldn't mind a little Maui weather at all.

Has Dallin left Maui yet? I'm sure he's excited and nervous. He will do great though. Our sempai are all gone now... so as for Japanese missionaries it's only my district and two others for now. My room actually got up at 4:30am on Monday to see them before they left for the travel office. It's crazy to think that they're all in Japan now! And that that will be us in no time. The thought of it is a little overwhelming and nerve-wracking... we don't have much more time to prepare.

How was Keawe's last game? Does he have another one tonight or tomorrow? Dad DearElder'd me about his game two weeks ago with his TD. I shared it with my district. Let him know that that's pretty awesome and I'm proud of him. Keep up the good work. And keep the grades up!! He's a student-athlete... student comes first.

When is Mikela's cheer competition? Be sure to let me know how they do! And how is Kauluwehi's senior year with college/scholarship applications going?

Let Keanu know I said hi and I love him!

Here's a good scripture... Alma 58:11 ''Yea, and it came to pass that the Lord our God did visit us with assurances that he would deliver us; yea insomuch that he did speak peace to our souls, and did grant unto us great faith, and did cause us that we should hope for our deliverance in him.'' It's a good pick-me-up scripture when you need a little boost. I don't know if they're going to have a plaque for me... but if they are, I'm still looking for a good scripture for it!

My companion and I... possibly along with a few other Elders in our district are planning on singing in the choir this week for devotional. I want to sing at least once, and since it's really likely that an apostle will speak for our Thanksgiving devotional, we're thinking this week - the week before Thanksgiving - will be a good time. We want to try to get really up close in the front for the Thanksgiving devotional.

An Elder in my district, Elder Burningham, received a letter in the mail from his mom with President Albrecht's (our mission president in Tokyo) account of the earthquake back in March. It was really interesting. So maybe try to search on the Internet for it. I forget its title, but it was about the recent earthquake and how they had 60 missionaries in the mission home that night. And all missionaries evacuated to other missions in Japan while the nuclear reactors weren't safe. Reading about all that the mission, and Japan, went through during that time is pretty interesting.

I enjoy reading Nathan's letters home. I'm proud of him and grateful for his example of hard work and diligence with this work.

Elder Ige's mom asked for our address... so maybe expect something in the mail? We aren't sure what she needs it for. As for the shoes that don't fit well, my companion might buy them from me. Otherwise I might be able to find someone else that could use them. That is the plan though, to find someone willing to buy them.

Anyway, I love you all. Thank you so much for your love and support. I enjoy your letters and DearElders. The 'Mormon Messages' and youth videos on are really good if you have some time to spare. There was a good one I saw about all of the influences we're faced with. In this day, we're bombarded by 'voices' telling us what we need to do and where we should be and what we need have. But, the voice we all must heed is the voice of the Spirit. Take care and always remember that we can go to Heavenly Father in prayer whenever we want or need to. No appointment needed.

Elder Rindlisbacher

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