Monday, August 26, 2013

Week 58: Triumph 勝利

Let me just tell you right now. The Gospel is true. This is the Lord`s work. and it will triumph over all evil.

We had 2 baptisms in the district last week. They got pretty complicated at the end. Both were in Sekime, but the investigators didn`t have overlapping free time, so it was 2 separate services. One was a Chinese girl I interviewed a while ago. Turns out she is on a work visa for a specific job, and her boss is very against anything religious, so he would not let her get work off to get baptized! With some last minute planning and with her miraculously getting off work a couple hours early, she was baptized last night, a little after 8 PM.

Over in Hirakata, it was a little bit of a down week, but even then we had 4 investigators at church. It was only a third of who planned to come, but it was because it was raining super hard and none of our investigators drive cars. So that was a little unfortunate. But all of those people should be able to come next week.

But..... I won`t be here next week. I`m transferring on Friday! It was another short stay. I am transferring to Matsuyama, where I will be Zone leader of half of the island of Shikoku, meaning I`ll be off the main island of Japan. My companion`s name is Elder Dickson, I don`t know him at all.  I`ll be over 15 missionaries over there. I don`t really know all my responsibilities yet, but I`ll figure out really soon. haha.

Its been a great stay in Hirakata. Things are really looking up and I`m sure there will be a couple more baptisms next transfer here. I`m sad to go but looking forward to what the Lord has in store for me next. It's going to be awesome.

I`ve learned so much through my many responsibilities as district leader over a large district. Also my responsibilities with many investigators. It really strengthened my testimony that God loves all His children so much. I can really feel that love while I serve those I am called to. The Lord truly blessed me here and I`m so grateful for all the time I had in Hirakata.  This truly is the Lord`s work.

Also, I drank pudding out of a can that I found in a vending machine. woah.

I Love you all!

Elder O`Reilly

お好み焼きOKONOMIYAKI. with like daikon kimchi stuff on top from korea.
OH MY GOSH. we make some good food. haha.

So we do all our morning study at the church now. Its pretty great.

Its me. In toe socks. At the stage at the church. (make this my facebook profile picture please (^^))

Another dish we make a lot. Hiyashi chuka. It`s a cold vinegar-noodle summer dish.

The whole district after district meeting this week.

Just in case you want to see my face.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Week 57: The work goes on 御業が進む

Its been a great week. Went on 2 exchanges and attended the baptism in Sekime. Also witnessed a fire be put out and went to Osaka stake conference.

The exchanges were great. It`s a great way to find out how the elders in the district are doing and help them out as best I can by working directly with them for a whole day. There are some really great Elders in the district, so its always a great experience.

So one really cool experience this week: We met with this one guy and gave him a book of Mormon on Wednesday. Then we met again on Saturday, and asked if he had a chance to read at all. He was like.... I read a little bit..... like just the first SIX HUNDRED PAGES. haha. We were like ...... what....? that`s awesome. Also we assigned him to draw the plan of salvation, since his hobby is to draw. He drew an AWESOME plan of salvation, and now I think he has a solid understanding of the Plan. He is a really fun guy, and I love teaching him. He even rode the train with us all the way to Abeno, where the Stake conference was.

Conference was great, my favorite talk was one of the 70`s wife, who told of her conversion story. Apparently her friends talked to her about Joseph Smith every single day while she was going to high school, even though she wasn`t interested. They were also inviting her to church every single week. But she wasn`t interested. One week, however, for whatever reason she was really sad. so, she decided to try to go to church. After church she met with some missionaries and the friend and when the friend heard she was upset so she came to church, she got excited and said `Really? I`ve been kneeling and praying every day that you would be upset!` (so she would come to church.) It was really funny, and also shows how a loving friend can bring the gospel into their friend`s life, even if they don`t seem to be interested at the moment.

The work in the district is going really well. The baptism in Sekime was awesome, and there are many more baptisms in the district coming up.

Love you all!
Elder O`Reilly

Its a Catterpie! (pokemon)

The back of my name tag. thanks to Elder Yamaguchi.

Asked our investigator to draw the plan of salvation for us. Asked him on Saturday night, he gave us this Sunday morning. Awesome.

So we see this smoke in the distance, and we figure its a campfire or something. Nope. Started hearing some sirens, and then we went over to check it out. There were a bunch of people watching them put out the fire, so we were like..... do you know what caused the fire?? and they were like `no.....` and then we said. `Oh...... Well we are missionaries! Want to come to church?!` haha. It was pretty great.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Week 55: Crazy クレージ

So this week was crazy! haha.

We went to Osaka on Monday. It was way awesome.

Taught a bunch of lessons. Got 2 new investigators, one is a Muslim, and the other is this awesome guy who says he saw God. haha.  Just met a ton of crazy people this week! We met this one guy and he instantly gave us his address and birthday and first and last name and everything. Another guy tried to teach us exorcism. I was like.... ok...... we`ll try it. Also there was this girl who was wearing an over-shirt that said `God Loves You`. We were like `Do you know what your shirt means?!` and she was like ` of Course I do. Do you want it?` and she half-way takes it off before I tell her, no, that`s ok. haha. (remember, it was just an over-shirt, haha.)

We`ve had a few lessons in English, to people who know stuff about religion. It has brought me to 2 conclusions. First, I`m really bad at English conversation. haha. Second, Perhaps one of the most important parts of a lesson is the part where no one says anything. Where you ask a question that causes them to think about their God, perhaps for the first time, and then you let the question hang in the air for several seconds. Its a little harder to have a question like that hang when they already think they understand about God. I just want to just tell them hey, wait a second and just let the spirit convert you! then you can look into all the deep doctrine that doesn`t really matter. haha.

I really am starting to understand how to bring the spirit into people`s lives. Following the training from the mission president, I`ve learned to teach simply and clearly so the spirit can testify of the truth of the message. We`ve been having very spiritually uplifting lessons, lately. Tons of lessons are scheduled this week too!

So on Friday, we had a few minutes after we had a day long training from president in Kyoto. We felt impressed to go to a park by the station, and we talked to a group of drama kids. After we invited them to the message, we were surprised to run into a member from the ward! After talking to him for a couple minutes, I realized he was currently out of a job, out of a place to stay, and out of money. We talked a while and eventually got the bishop involved.   The bishop is so awesome. The member got an apartment 2 days later and we helped transport a fridge that we weren`t using that was in our house (we really have a big house. haha. We`re using the other 3 fridges/freezers) I was really glad I was able to help him find the help he needed. Also very glad for the awesome bishop.

After we helped transport the fridge, we went to Sekime. The sisters are having a baptism soon! So I went Sunday to do the interviews. 2 Chinese girls will be baptized there next week and the week after that! They are sooooooo elect. It was my first time doing a baptismal interview, and it was a pretty cool spiritual experience.

So a new follow-up system because of the influx of new missionaries was invented from the big training meeting we had in Kyoto. Its really awesome, but takes a ton of time...... I was on the phone from 8 PM to 10:30 straight Sunday night, no breaks except in the middle for 5 minutes to submit weekly numbers as fast as I could, and then I stayed up in my futon punching in information into an E-mail to report, then I woke up an hour early and planned the next district meeting so I could submit the schedule to the zone leaders, and I followed up with the elders from the district during breakfast time..... haha.  Been a little crazy because everyone is seeing so much success. A lot to report. haha. There could be worse problems.

Well, I love you all! the work is just booming over here and its crazy fun.

This week will be awesome! Going on 2 exchanges and teaching the thousands.

Elder O`Reilly

Finally got the word `Osaka` from the water clock.

We went to the Sky garden in Osaka! It was WAAY cool! This is the escalator near the top. Its over 50 stories tall.

The escalator. and Elder Mizuguchi

If you look through the inside window..... its this. Unfortunately, the top level was closed that day. :(


Chilling with the Japanese elders in the district at the top of Sky garden. (空中庭園)

A better picture of us and the Japanese Elders

Went with the whole district and some investigators.

Sky gardens. Picture from bottom.

Monday, August 5, 2013

I will attach a random picture from one of the 5 areas I`ve been in. :-)

Week 54: no rules 決まっているところはない

So as always it was a great week. We had 5 investigators at church yesterday, and the other elders had a couple as well so we had 7 investigators total at church. Pretty awesome.

Had a companion exchange on Friday/Saturday! Went to the big city again (Osaka city) and I was with Elder Mizuguchi. It was way fun. He is an awesome Elder. We found a college open house, and spent the night talking to groups of college kids. This is what I mean by no rules. haha. At the beginning I assumed it would be to hard to stop large groups of people and talk to them for any time at all, but we had some great contacts with groups of guys. Also, we ran into a couple that was out shopping or something, I bore powerful testimony about Eternal Families, and they became a strong potential investigator. Pretty great day. Also taught some lessons and even set a baptismal date while on the exchange.

Had some good lessons back in Hirakata as well. On Thursday, we had 3 lessons, distance wise they were far apart, so we just bolted from lesson to lesson. It was pretty great. We`ve got some investigators that are really progressing.

I did another district meeting. The district is now 9 people, 3 of the sisters were only temporary. So it was slightly less stressful, and turned out pretty good. Got some good participation from everyone and we all learned some stuff.

Well, we are going to go to Osaka city with the district today. Should be fun! ^^
 love you all! (o-.-)b

Elder O`Reilly

Also it rained really hard sometimes:P

my comp. and Elder Yamaguchi

Me and Elder Mizuguchi