Christ is truly our Savior

March 27, 2016

We get transfer calls tomorrow and I think we are going to stay together, but you never know.

This last week was definitely the a harder week in my mission.

Thursday was probably one of the harder days of my mission. I was on splits with my district leader when I got some bad news. Here's how the day played out: We went to the church so my district leader could sync up his area book and with the 5 minutes I had, I decided to check to see if I had any emails from the mission. I saw an email from my mom telling me that my dog died from end stage liver failure. I didn't even know he was sick, so I was straight up crushed and spent the next 10 minutes in the church crying. Of course I had to continue with missionary work, so I basically just followed my companion around the next 2 hours without saying a word. To be honest, I couldn't focus at all. He decided it would be best to go back to the apartment and I couldn't have agreed more. It sucked being in another missionary's area during all of this because I didn't want to be the reason our splits weren't very effective. That being said, we did head back and I spent the next hour in the bathroom crying. It might sound stupid to some of you, but that dog was part of our family. Still pretty bummed, but I'm okay now. I think the bad news and the fact that I've been under a lot of stress lately from the ward and other things kind of bundled up, and then finally just erupted. Looking back now, I feel like a little girl for crying, but I am 100% now.

We taught a lot about Jesus Christ this week, and showed a lot of videos about his life. We learned something in a broadcast to missionaries last transfer that said "if you don't know what to teach, teach about Christ." We have lots of investigators that just aren't progressing, so we're at the point where it's... What do we teach? That's why we talked a lot about Christ. It sounds crazy, but you can see how touched people are when they learn about Christ. Even if they have been Buddhist their whole life and don't really know a whole ton about him.

Lots of other things happened this week, but I'm extra tired today for some reason, so this email is going to be shorter.

Hope everyone has a good week. Being a missionary is truly a privilege, I've learned that a lot out here.

敬具 (sincerely yours)
ー  シャイト長老 (Elder Scheidt)

[Us and our Eikaiwa class]

R.I.P. Ozzy [March 22, 2016]


What's Up!!!

March 20, 2016

What's up everyone?!? Hope everyone enjoyed my lovely pictures. Let's get to the update of this last week

Monday: went to bistari bistari (Nepalese curry and NAN). Think it's become my favorite food in this area, and I swear I crave cheese nan every time I get hungry. We're trying to become regulars and I think it's working because the guy told us about a special they had today, but no one else. ;) Also have our normal spot in the restaurant. went super hard In the 3 hours of missionary work and got 3 lessons. Actually gave out a Book of Mormon! Super rare for me, so it kind of made my night. Excited for bistari next week (meaning today in about 2 hours!)

Tuesday: went out as a district and ate sushi. I ate a lot. Dropped just about 20$, but it was sick. You click a screen and select your sushi and then it comes around on a conveyor belt. I ordered a lot of cake haha. I'm getting fat this transfer haha. I've probably gained about 5 pounds. I think the same 5 pounds I lost last transfer... Taught some good lessons that day as well. Finally met with one lady we've been trying to meet with for the whole transfer. She has potential, just so dang busy. Also gave her a Book of Mormon! This week we taught a lot and it was awesome to see progress.

Wednesday: we go to an old folks home every Wednesday here and talk to old ladies for about 2 hours. It's hard enough to understand old people English, let alone Japanese. It's near impossible. I nod a lot and say "right" or "yeah yeah yeah" a lot. I love doing service because Japanese people are too stubborn to let you help them with anything if you don't know them. So, my service opportunities here are way small. At night we tried visiting some people, but no one was home. Bummer! I always make origami and give them to people. The old folks people loved them.

Thursday: we met with Takada San. He has a baptismal date for the 27th of this month, but still hasn't been and won't come to church, so the date went away. He's a 70ish year old man and is very content with being rich (he's filthy) and happy. Right now he's doing everything right, but has a problem with the law of chastity. I won't go into detail, but he's being difficult. We're trying to teach him the blessings of following commandments, but he always says rejects it and whenever you start to talk all serious or testify to him. He always looks down at his phone and kind of stops listening. please pray for him. He is so close and just needs to make those final steps towards Christ. I love him. Probably my favorite investigator haha. Watched finding faith in Christ with him, and it kind of slapped him in the face and woke him up. He knows what he needs to do, just needs a little more faith.

Friday: cool moment of the week. We had a lot of housing time because another baptismal date investigator (yamahata San) doesn't answer our calls. We tried visiting her anyways because she has a date for the 27th this month, but isn't prepared yet. Don't really know what to know if she's not really contacting us back. Anyway, She wasn't home and so we started housing. It was getting really rough, so I decided to say a silent prayer asking for at least one nice person to JUST LISTEN to us. Here in Japan no one really listens. They heard Jesus Christ and it's "yep no thanks, I'm Buddhist" (and then turn off their little speaker box). It makes it rough sometimes, but those people that just listen, even if they don't have interest sometimes make the rough times a bit easier. We found a way cool guy named sato san and we're going to visit him next week. Tender mercies of the Lord are what make missionary work all worth the while.

Saturday: tried a bunch of people and no one was really home. Still hadn't done our 3 hour weekly planning session for the week, so we went back a bit early and did that. Pretty boring day to be honest.

Sunday: my companion had a talk at church today. The Japanese comes a little harder to him than a lot of other people, so he basically a lot of Friday and Saturday asking for my help to translate it to Japanese. Also taught three lessons that night to the same people on Monday. We hit an all time mission high for me!!!

GREAT NEWS!!! The snow is melting like crazy. I'm up in on of the more northern areas and it's almost all melted. It started a couple days ago, and has been working really hard. We get our bikes back next transfer, so I don't have to walk 1 hour to the area and 1 hour back anymore (if I don't transfer). One day I was actually sweating a lot, and I don't think my body remembers what sweat feels like.

The language is going alright. I'm the senior companion, so no matter what I need to at least act like I understand. In Japanese, when you ask a question it's the same as when you're stating a sentence. The only difference being "Ka" at the end. It's the best, when i sit there listening to a member or investigator ramble off and i just think to myself "freak! What are they saying? I really hope this isn't a question" and then they let out KA and its game over. Some days I understand a lot, some almost none. I still really hate Japanese haha.

Elder Pace and I get along really well. We're so different but  it hasn't caused any problems this far. We haven't even been mad at each other once yet, which is an accomplishment if you spend 24/7 with someone everyday for 5weeks. Still hard teaching because he's so quiet and afraid of messing up, so I basically am doing most, if not all of it.

Mission life is good and I'm loving it out here. I'm working really hard this transfer. Hard work brings big rewards. Kk this email is huge, but I feel like I could have given a better idea of the environment I'm in right this week, so next week will be shorter sorry. Have a good week!

敬具 (sincerely yours)

ー  シャイト長老 (Elder Scheidt)

[Actually had a wedding couple weeks back I forgot to mention. The missionaries in this area all sang families can be together. The cake was legendary. So much cake was leftover, but we didn't get any and I'm still confused on where it all went. The hunt continues.]


[District at sushi. My hair looks way short with a little fuzz on top. Yep.]


What's up Everyone? Pictures

March 13, 2016

This week I don't feel like emailing, so I'm sending a bunch of pictures and captions. Enjoy!

[Throw back to old companion and my favorite ward member from my last area]

[Bunch of random people I don't know and my companion now in the back looking dumb, and elder Rees not ready for the pic. I attached this because I think I look like a model]

[Every Monday we eat Nepal curry and so much NAN. I'm trying to beat the record of 7 by another missionary. Right now I'm training]

[What I eat a lot: this is curry and rice. Nothing special.] 

[I take a picture that is this setting every week. Cheese nan is life.]

[Our investigator's cat is so sick.]

[Been going hard on origami for a while now. A member showed me a book with a bunch of cool patterns. The one on the right is the new one I learned. I'll probably send more next week too haha]

敬具 (sincerely yours)
ー  シャイト長老 (Elder Scheidt)


Good Week! Boring title

March 6, 2016

Hey what's up fam. And friends? This week was super fast and I hit my 8 month mark which is freaking crazy. That's when I realized I've been on the mission longer than I was in college! Holy, where does the time go?

One exciting thing from this week is that we made another baptismal date. It's a guy in his 40's named Tawaraya san. He's heard most of the lessons from other missionaries, but kind of just likes the missionaries and doesn't want to commit anything. It was the first time I met him and before we went over my comp told me that he's a video game nerd, anime nerd, movie nerd. I thought about my sister Nicole, but Japanese haha. Plus, he's a guy.

At first the vibe was really bad. I was trying to talk to him, but he was just staring at his computer playing league of legends and only giving me one word answers or "uh uh uh" when I asked about his life. This vibe went on for about an hour. Plus, my companion is a super quiet guy so he wasn't saying anything and really didn't say more than 2 sentences in that whole 2ish hour visit. Tbh, I was getting way frustrated and it really felt like we were wasting time because it was clear this guy didn't want to talk to us. I was wondering how the past missionaries taught him, how he clearly didn't have interest, and was just kind of uneasy about everything. I thought about leaving 4 or 5 times and was pretty dang close to making up an excuse and bouncing out of there. I had a prompting to just starting talking about gospel principles and what he's heard from other missionaries. When he heard me start he looked up and said: "oh if you want to talk about church stuff just let me know first" he then turned of the Tv that was playing in the back, shut down his computer screen, put away his phone and pulled out his Book of Mormon (still don't know where he pulled it from haha). He then proceeded to listen to our message about baptism and participated really well. It'll probably still be hard to get to know him, but I'm glad we stayed.

We talked a lot about how he's listening and meeting with missionaries about once a week, but I asked him what he was working towards. He didn't know, so we testified about baptism and told him all the blessings he can receive from it. He seemed a bit on edge, but we emphasized it as a GOAL and something he can achieve little by little. Looking back, that was totally guidance by the spirit. After thinking about it twice, if we went any other route I think he would've been pretty shady and turned the invitation down. That and the fact that if I made up an excuse and we left, he wouldn't have a date. The spirit is real my friends. Just show faith and be willing to listen when it comes and you will feel it. Crazy experience for me and even crazier when I think about it again.

We had our zone training meeting last Tuesday, and of course since one of the zone leaders is my companion from two transfers ago, he called on me to bear my testimony in front of the whole zone. I got up there and told everyone I was expecting it anyways so looks like I'm the real winner haha. Spirit was strong, awesome opportunity.

We housed a lot this week and just did normal missionary work. Talked to some really nice people and praying that we get some new investigators out of them.

I'm think my desire is really starting to increase the further along I get in my mission. At first it was "shoot 3 hours of housing, how do I find a way to make that go quicker?" Obviously ringing doorbells and getting rejected 50 times in an hour is not the most fun activity, but now it's more of a "I really hope this person listens to us and opens their heart to our message" kind of feeling. It truly is awesome. I love being a missionary, and although it is dang freaking hard sometimes and I have that I want to lay on the couch feeling, I know I am called of God and this truly is the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Thankful for all my blessings.

Hope my mom cries after this email after she sees my spiritual growth haha.
Kk have a good week!

敬具 (sincerely yours)

ー  シャイト長老 (Elder Scheidt)

Way Tired

February 28, 2016

This week was a solid week for missionary work! we taught about 8 lessons, which is way good for me, and we worked super hard. Every night I hit my bed so tired. We've been walking about 25 kilos. every day for 2 reasons. 1: Elder Pace doesn't know the area as much as he thought he did (so I already took over navigating). 2: we don't have a ton scheduled, so it's mostly this kind of schedule.

6:30-12:00 exercise, meals, all of study
12:00-1:00 WALK to area
1:00-7:00 walk around and visit the people that have been taking lessons or been taught before.
7:00-8:00 walk back to the apartment
8:00-9:00 dinner

It's a lot of walking I'll tell you that. The way Elder Pace said it: "I feel like every day is just like walking around Disneyland, but there are no rides" haha. I love being a missionary!

Right now we have two people with baptismal dates. Takada san and yamahata san. They both still need a lot of work, but for the most part are keeping commitments and meeting with us once or twice a week. Takada San is my favorite. He's this 70 year old rich guy who loves technology. Every time we go over to teach, he shows us some new Apple TV connection or something he just discovered that came out probably 7 years ago. I always act way surprised and just mess with him a bunch. Yamahata San straight up stresses me out haha. She is always so jumpy and no matter what you really say to her, she'll reply back "yes I'm going to church" which is a good thing to say back, but she actually didn't come yesterday :( it's okay we're doing our best.

We taught one lesson this week to this college girl in her genkan. (Little little little room for shoes right behind the front door) We ended up talking for about an hour and taught the whole first lesson. About God being our Father in Heaven, families, Joseph Smith, and then introduced the Book of Mormon. We gave her one and committed her to read and pray about it. She seemed to have a way strong desire. It was kind of a tough lesson because my companion is really really quiet and doesn't have a ton of confidence. He told me he's a little afraid of speaking and saying something wrong in Japanese, so I basically have done 95% of the talking up to this point, but he's doing his best so I can't complain. I can't make him teach, I can only encourage and show my love.

Yesterday we had a big potluck called a 食事会 in Japan and I ate way too much. I was actually in a lot of pain when we got back from church. Of course when you can't eat, that's when you get the most food. Had a meal at a members house and ate even more than at lunch. I have never had so much pain in my stomach. We got back from the meal and I went straight to my futon and laid down the rest of the night. I'm actually still in a lot of pain right now haha. I'm never doing that again, seriously close to one of the most pain I have ever been in. Yep, don't worry too much mom.

Yep, so we worked really hard and taught a decent amount of lessons. Happy to be here and happy to be spreading this wonderful message we have. It is the truth. No doubt in my mind!
Love you all

Have a great week

敬具 (sincerely yours)

ー  シャイト長老 (Elder Scheidt)

[Ate at bistari bistari. Has way good curry and unlimited nan. I ate 5
or 6 and one was cheese nan. I took this picture when he was praying
because he always looks way mad when he prays haha]

Transfer News!!

February 21, 2016

So, big news for this week's email is that I transferred and went sempai! So in Japanese, the way we label the senior companion (who does a big portion of the companionship's work) and the junior companion (follows their senior) is Sempai meaning senior, and kouhai meaning junior. I went Sempai after 4 transfers and it's actually pretty rare, and way early for this mission in particular. Looks like I need a little beating to gain some humility. Sheesh God knows my Japanese isn't good.

My responsibilities have shot up ten fold. My new companion is Elder Pace, who is on transfer 4, meaning he came to the mission and Japan only 6 weeks after me. Basically, being Sempai is the same with a couple of differences. I have to lead lessons and always know what is going on in the lesson, report numbers and information about investigators, and make all the phone calls. To be honest, the teaching part is way hard, because if I don't know what's going on my companion definitely doesn't either. Little different from last transfer where my companion was Japanese and always knew 100%, but God is sending a lot of help our way. We are going to need it. I'm getting real used to nodding and saying mhmmm without a clue. It's only been 3 days haha. A big part of teaching in Japanese is showing that you understand when you actually don't have a clue. Then you realize it's a question... Mhmm wait what?

So, I transferred to a place called SUEHIRO and it is out in the countryside. I've been in the city for 4 transfers, so it's way new to me. However, suehiro is in the 2nd biggest city in Hokkaido, called ASAHIKAWA. So, even when I leave the city, I go to the city in the countryside. It's way cool, I love it here. There is a famous place here called Bistari-Bistari (famous Indian NAN) that I want to eat at, but my comp. is being super stingy with his money. I've been pretty wise up to this part, so I'm rolling in doe and can't spend anything. I might just pay for him because that's the only way. Smart strategy Elder Pace. He's 19 and fresh out of high school. Also probably 6'3" 210 lbs. To give an accurate image. Yep, two Americans who can't speak Japanese walking around with no other missionaries for miles. I look huge next to him.

This week was pretty normal other than what I forgot to mention in last week's email. So when we had transfers before it was always done in the following. Everyone gets their calls whether they are transferring or not. If one person in a companionship is indeed transferring, you head to a specified church in the middle of Sapporo. You see all you old missionary friends and then pick up your new companion and head back to the area. Pretty safe right? Yep, it WAS. Recently (I mean about a week ago) it changed 100%. Now it's no transfer spot that people meet at. Instead, you get your call and get information about how to transfer, and yep... Go ALONE. Of course I went from city to countryside the first time this happens. I had to take a 45 minute train ride and 2 1/2 hour bus ride alone. If I get lost that sucks. No phone on me, only directions and of course can't use the iPad's because your companion has to see your screen at all times. Yep, I was scared. I was just look at a sign and think "yep I can't read that" and then head in a random direction. Somehow, I made it to the bus terminal safely. That somehow is help from God. My transfer info. Was very vague, and I just didn't want to get lost because I can't talk to people for help, and have no phone. I never want to transfer again. Just kidding it actually wasn't too bad.

Other than that, this area is awesome! We teach almost 8+ lessons a week. That's way more than my past two areas, and I'm excited to see what we can do here. The first two days my companion (who actually is experiencing his first time being the one to lead us around the area) and I got way lost and walked basically all day. He knows the area about as much as I do. Looks like I'm going to learn patience this transfer too.

It's about an hour to each area we work in, so 2 hours of walking minimum every day. I'm about to lose 10 pounds no doubt. The ward is awesome, and I'm really hoping I can get this area going even more than before. After all God does make weak things strong! This gospel is real, and I'm so grateful to know the truth and be able to teach it to people in ignorance. I love the Book of Mormon and the apostles are the best! Those men are called of God, and are teaching for our benefit. THANK YOU.

Sorry that this week is pretty long, but last thing....

So the shower here. Oh the shower. My companion and I can't figure out the warm water. There's a bathtub and a shower head, but the hot water only works on the tub. Every day thus far I've tried to work the shower head and give up after 20 minutes. Put the plug in the bathtub and wait. While I'm waiting for the tub to fill up I use this little bucket and dump the hot water on my head like a little boy in Africa. It's definitely a first, and believe it or not it is actually very humbling haha. Okay. Pray for my water heater to start working haha

Peaches! Love you all
Shout out to the Mitchell family for sending me Girl Scouts cookies.
Sorry mom you got nothing! Hah jk love you

Bye bye

敬具 (sincerely yours)

ー  シャイト長老 (Elder Scheidt)