Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Week 81 - April 29, 2013
Aloha everyone,
I hope you're all doing great. Today marks the first day of the last six months of my mission. It's gone by so fast, and it's been so great. I want to do everything I can to ensure that this six months is the best six months. I've been thinking about it, and setting a lot of good goals.

We had a great week here in Kanagawa. I'm having a great time with Elder Hill, he's a great missionary. It's cool knowing that our families have connections aside from us being companions.

This past Tuesday to Wednesday I had the opportunity to go on companion exchange with Elder Robb from Spanish Fork, UT. Elder Call (my last companion) is actually his uncle's brother. He's a new missionary and has been here for about four weeks now. He's a very athletic guy, but very shy when it comes to stopping and talking to people. He's working hard to break out of his shell.

Elder Hill and I were able to go on exchange with Elder Olson, one of the assistants to the president, this past Friday to Saturday. He's a great missionary and we had a great time. We had a lot of time to find more people to teach, and as we did so we tried to work a lot on unifying as a companionship. We did a good job. There's a lot of power when companions are unified and build off of each other well.

The next morning, one of our investigators, Kotsubo, was baptized. It was a great baptismal service with a bunch of members present. Kotsubo is a very shy, quiet guy, who doesn't open up very much, but it was very easy to tell that he was very happy. This weekend was stake conference so he'll be confirmed this next Sunday in sacrament meeting. He's a great guy. He comes to church each week about an hour early and sits in the chapel reading the Book of Mormon. We were able to get one of the single adults in the ward to baptize him. He's 19 and the stake president's son, but not too fired up to serve a mission. He isn't against it, just not too much for it either. He's never really talked with or built a relationship with Kotsubo, but Kotsubo said he was fine with anyone baptizing him. He was super nervous when we asked him, but he did it, and he did a great job. We felt his joy and his fire to share the gospel grow. I'll send a few pictures.

So this weekend we had stake conference. It was amazing. I wish I could have recorded some of the talks to send to you. Elder Ringwood, Area Presidency, and Elder Otahara, newly called to be an area president, were in attendance and spoke. President and Sister Budge also came and spoke. Elder Ringwood gave a phenomenal talk on the priesthood. What is the priesthood? Explained simply, the priesthood is a gift from God meant to bring blessings to families. Elder Ringwood spoke of priesthood keys in the church, one of the reasons we need the church. We absolutely need the church to perform absolutely essential ordinances that require priesthood keys. He also spoke of how the priesthood functions fully in the home without priesthood keys. There is no need for keys to gather the family for prayer or to have a gospel discussion known as family home evening. The father and mother in a home should work equally and together with that. The priesthood should be the strongest in the home. At the end of his talk he had Sister Budge stand next to him and he asked her a question. It was a very powerful question. She had spoken on love at home and said that she loved her husband, President Budge. President Budge had also said in his talk that he loved Sister Budge. Elder Ringwood asked her, “Do your children know that their father loves their mother? How?” The question can be asked oppositely as well, “Do your children know that their mother loves their father? How?” It was very powerful. We all need to understand what the priesthood is.

After that Sunday Session of stake conference Elder Ringwood held a devotional for the young men/women and single adults. That was great as well. He urged and urged everyone to keep the commandments, for in that is safety and peace, just as the hymn (#303) says.

During the Sunday Session there was also a 17 year-old speaker. He and his family are from Utah, but they've lived in Japan for a while. He's 17, but he recently received a mission call to serve in the Japan Fukuoka Mission. It's amazing to see 17 year old young men, preparing and prepared to serve full-time missions. Younger sisters are also entering the field. The work is hastening.

I saw Watabe Sensei yesterday. He said he saw you a little while ago on Maui and that Bishop Brantley was moving so the bishopric would be reorganized soon. I guess that's probably happening right now.

This morning Elder Hill and I got up 4:30 am and went over to Kawasaki, one of the areas in our zone. Both of the Kawasaki Elders’ birthdays are coming up, so we got to their apartment at 6:45 am, while they were doing their morning workout, and made breakfast for them. My zone leaders a few transfers ago did that for me when my birthday was coming up. It was a lot of fun.

Today we also had zone p-day. We gathered at a park as a zone and played a bunch of sports. It was a lot of fun.

The work is great. The church is true. God lives. I hope you all have a great week! You're the best!

I love you!!!

Elder Rindlisbacher

P.S. Thank you for the pictures of Grandpa. I'm so glad to see him at church.

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