Monday, December 28, 2015

Merry Christmas from Japan!

Merry Christmas from Japan!

I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas, and that you all were safe
traveling to different Christmas parties! This week my companion and I
taught 20 lessons, and we weren't in the area for 2 days, so we are
going to see if we can do lots more this week! On Wednesday it was our
wards Christmas party, so we were at the church all day setting up,
and then after, taking it down. We had a lot of our investigators
there. And one of of investigators brought 2 of his friends! So we
talked to them and taught them about the church during the activity!
On Thursday we went to Kobe, which is about an hour away by train. In
Kobe we had a big Christmas activity with 2 other zones in our
mission. We played sports, and then watched this years mission video!
After that we had American tacos, because our mission president is a
stud! And then had like a fun talent show, which was a lot of fun.
That took all day, and then we went back to Okamachi.
On Christmas Day, we were pretty busy. We had district meeting and
then went out for sushi as a district. Then we did some mission work
and visited some people. Then for dinner, a couple in our ward Invited
my companion over to their house. We were able to teach a lesson to
them and it was a fun little night! But it definitely did not feel
like Christmas! Christmas is pretty much just another work day for the
Japanese people. But we still made it a fun day! On Friday we helped a
less active in our ward, build a flower bed in her backyard, and
shovel a bunch of dirt. It was fun to actually do some service here!
Then I got to call home to the fam which was awesome! On Sunday, all 6
of the missionaries in Okamachi went to a members house for dinner!
They cooked American tacos!!! That was so fun!
Today, we went to a big park and played a big game of tag with the
other ward and their missionaries and youth! It was so fun! Sorry that
this weeks email is short! Ill send lots of pictures! Love you all!!
Evans choro

Alex and his Christmas tree, and all of the presents

A beautiful day in Japan

Playing at the park

Elder Evans and Elder Barton

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Transfer week!!!

It's another beautiful day in Japan! πŸ‡―πŸ‡΅ A LOT has happened this week so let's see begin! Last Monday I found out that I was being transferred to the smallest area in the mission! I was really excited, but really sad to leave my branch in Nishiwaki. I absolutely love the people in Nishiwaki!! So Monday, I spent the day packing bags and getting them ready to ship to my new area! On Tuesday, we spent the day meeting with members, and letting them know I was transferring, and sharing a message with them. Our branch president also took us out to sushi since I was being transferred. Everyone was really surprised that I was transferring already. Normally you stay in an area for approximately 3 months (2 transfers), but the longer you have been in the mission, the longer you stay in areas. Nonetheless, I was really surprised to be transferred, but I was super excited as well! On Wednesday, we shipped my bags to Okamachi πŸ™ŒπŸΌ and then we drove with Mirata Kyodai to Susayama (which is a 2 hour drive, but it is in the Nishiwaki area) so that we could teach a member's Eikaiwa (English conversation) class. We shared a Christmas message and had a lot of fun! When we got back to Nishiwaki, we got a call from Kamurazaki Shimai (a member in our branch) and she asked if we could come over and eat dinner with her and her family and say goodbye to me. The Japanese people are honestly the nicest people and the most generous people and I am so grateful for all that the Nishiwaki people did for me. On Thursday, we got up early and our branch president picked us up and took me to the train station.  Brother Inoue and his wife, and brother Mirata and his family, and the branch president and his wife were at the Eki (train station)🚊to see me off. I sure love those people, and want to go back to see them!! 🐡
We got on the train and headed to the transfer point in Sanomiya. Which is in Kobe. In Japan, you put your bike 🚲in a bike bag, and carry it with you when you transfer. In America you can pretty much just ride your bike onto the train, but in Japan, it has to be in a bike bag. (LAME!!!) It sucked to carry that bike around all day, and cram it onto PACKED trains. When you get into the city areas in Japan, trains are PACKED! Everyone is standing and squished in. So getting a bike on the dang train was a pain in the buttπŸ˜‚ After we went to Sanomiya, and met up with a travel group, we went to tannoji, where I met my new companion who will be finishing up my training with me! His name is Barton Choro and he went to Olympus high school! He is an 11th transfer, and his Japanese is really good! He is AMAZING at the guitar!!!!! 🎸He had a band while he was in Utah, and also taught people how to play. So he is dang good. He is 6'4 and I am about 6'2, so we are two HUGE gaijin (foreigners) walking around a huge city. We get a lot of funny looks, and it actually helps to talk to people πŸ‘πŸΌ In Okamachi, there are 4 elders and 2 sisters. So In our apartment, there is me and Barton choro, and then Hashimoto choro and motsumoto choro! It's such a fun apartment, and it's nice to have 2 Japanese elders living with me! My Japanese has already improved so much, just in the couple days I have been with them. Though, both of them can speak a little English. 
On Friday, we did our first full day of missionary work. It's completely different than how you do missionary work in Nishiwaki! Nishiwaki is country, so there isn't a lot of people to talk to.....but.... Now I am in COMPLETE CITY. It doesn't get more city than this πŸ˜‚ We did some streeting which scared me to death! There are people everywhere, so riding a bike through the city is a little sketchy, but dang fun. My companion stopped the first couple people, and then he said I would be doing the next one, but he helped me to know what to say when I stopped the person. So I decided just to do it, and not freak out about it. So I stopped a guy and started talking to him. He was a really cool guy, but not really interested. We did finding most of the day which turned out to be pretty fun! Later that night we taught a lesson to a guy named chinsei at the church about the Book of Mormon. He is struggling to understand the spirit, and to get an answer to his prayers about the Book of Mormon.✨πŸ“– It was a little hard to teach him, but I was able to do a lot of the talking. My trainer is really good at teaching and giving me solid time to speak. 
Saturday, we had plans to meet with about 5 or 6 people and ALL of them canceled 🚫on us. It was kind of disappointing but we ended up doing some finding! We found 3 possible investigators. Later in the day, we were going to the church to prepare for a sports activity, and we saw a dude dressed in full star wars gear walking down the street past the church. We were actually pretty scared of the guy at first, but decided to go ask him for a picture. He turned out to be one of the nicest guys I have met and we ended up teaching a lesson right on the spot! The guy has interest in the church and wants to come! So Barton choro and I were really excited. And it was kind of funny to teach a dude in full stars wars gear. After that, we went to the church for SPORTS NIGHT!!! I have missed playing sports so much! But we were able to play some basketball!! I am in one of the few places that has a basketball court in my mission, so I feel super blessed! πŸ™ŒπŸΌ
Sunday we went to the church at 8 am for the people that have to work on Sunday. So before work, they hold a mini sacrament. Me and Barton choro were asked to pass the sacrament to them. In Japan, people are constantly busy with work, the Japanese people work themselves to death! The only way for some of them to be able to partake of the sacrament is if they come early before work. Then we had sacrament meeting where I had to introduce myself and share my testimony.  In Okamachi they are a ward not a branch, so it's a little bigger than I am used to, so I was a little nervous, but I did it! Then that night we helped the ward decorate for the Christmas party on Wednesday. It's been a very eventful week! But I am loving being a missionary. Today, my companion and I are going to go get me a guitar at a recycle shop so me and him can jam together. πŸ€‘πŸ€—He is sooooo good!!! Maybe we will do a little guitar dendo (mission work)as well this transfer ;)! We are also expecting to see a couple baptisms this transfer which I am soooooooo excited for!!!
There are lots of pictures attached, sorryπŸ˜‚πŸ˜… Exciting weekπŸ‘ŒπŸΌ
I hope everyone has a MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!! Through all of the presents and everything, try and remember the real meaning of Christmas and the amazing gift Heavenly Father gave all of us, in Jesus Christ. Everyone have a safe Christmas, and eat some amazing American food!!! 
That was pretty much my week! ζ„›γ—γ¦γ‚‹γ‚ˆ!!!(love you) 

エバンズ 長老

Monday, December 14, 2015

First Transfer

Hello Everyone!

Today was transfer announcements and I found out that I will be transferring already! Our transfer day is on Thursday, and I will be heading down to the Osaka North zone. My area is called Okamachi. Osaka is the 2nd biggest city in Japan, so it'll be fun to be in city. My first area (Nishiwaki) is country. So it'll be a big change, but I'm looking forward to it. But today, I have to pack so I don't have too much time to email. So this one might be a little short! 

Last Wednesday our zone had interviews with our mission president in Fukuchiyama, so we had to go up there. Our interviews are only 15 minutes long, so you have to be prepared with what you want to talk to him about. The question I asked was how to take a step of faith towards Christ. He gave me some really good insight on faith, and how I can strengthen my faith in the Savior and take a step towards him. The time with the mission president went by really fast, but it was good to sit down with him one on one! He is a really cool guy.

On Friday, we had a combined district meeting in Fukuchiyama again, so we went back up there. The whole zone was there so it was a lot of fun! On Saturday, we were supposed to go to Toyooka (the other side of our area, 3 hours away) but our members needed us at a ward music night that they planned that we didn't know about. So we stayed and had some fun, and some of the members preformed instruments and stuff! 

On Sunday, we got up early, and left with some members to Toyooka. We had a combined sacrament meeting up there, with our branch and the toyooka branch. After the meeting, everyone had brought a lot of food, so we had a big lunch, and then watched the Christmas devotional. It was a lot of fun!!

I'm excited for my adventure in Okamachi. It'll be different, but I'm super excited! I hope everyone has a good week!
Evans Choro

I forgot to mention this in my regular email but its funny so....
On Friday, I was on splits with my district leader,(olsen choro's
companion) in Fukuchiyama on Friday. We had just finished up for the
day, and it was raining pretty hard, so we headed back to the
apartment. Japanese people ride bikes fast, so i stood up on my bike
to catch up to him, and the chain slipped, and the bike came out from
under me, and i went face first into the ground. I was luckily wearing
a helmet, which really saved me, 'cuz i slid across the ground a bit
haha. I was riding olsen choro's bike too. But i jumped back up. We
put the chain back on and kept going. Luckily, the bike was okay, just
a few scratches, and the helmet was okay, just a few scratches haha.
And me.. I was okay, just some cuts on my leg and ankle haha. and a
little bruise on my knee. Luckily I was wearing a helmet haha!! So
fun! ;)

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Week 5 in Japan


This week I did a lot of learning! Ill just start off on Monday! Monday- we met with an investigator named Ohara-san. I guess this guy has been meeting with missionaries for tons of years. Like 10-15 years. He randomly texted us and asked us if we could meet, so we thought, why not. This was my first time meeting him, and my companions second time. He has been taught everything, the problem is, he has his own ideas of EVERYTHING. When we met with him, he did most of the talking. He speaks in really hard Japanese, so I had no idea what was going on. So that was fun. We ended up meeting with him 3 times this week. So we will see what happens with him! We will also be meeting with him again tonight!
Tuesday- We got up and did some study, and then rode our bikes 30-40 minutes to Kato-shi to play tennis and talk to people with one of the members in our branch. After we were done, we started riding back but the wind was blowing so hard. I was getting super frustrated because it was really hard to ride. After that, we got out and did some housing. The whole day, people were very rude, and we got a lot of "Shuukyou wa dame desu!" (religion is bad) and lots of doors slammed in our face. Im not a fan of housing, so I am trying to figure out a more affective way to find people, other than knocking on doors. Then we went with our shibu kaicho (branch president) to teach one of his friends, and then right after that, we went to teach eikaiwa. So that day was really busy, but I had a lot of fun teaching!
Wednesday- I was able to go on companionship exchanges with my zone leader, Dale Choro. He has been in Japan for 15 transfers. He only has one more transfer until he goes home, but he has not given up on missionary work yet! He is a really hard worker! I actually felt like I was being trained with him! We did our studies, and then he helped me translate some things that we could use throughout the day while we were contacting people! For some reason, since I have been in Japan, I dont. stop. eating. and it has gotten really expensive! But for lunch, he took me to a restaurant that has a meal called "King Sized". It is pretty much a huge bowl of rice, with tons of meet piled on it. He told me that he didnt think I could finish it. Which was funny because I ended up finishing it way before he did, and I could have kept going if I had to ;) After lunch, we started doing some finding. He would show me, and then make me do it. One of the times, we knocked on some ladies door, and he told me I would be talking. She opened up, and I said my lines. I normally introduce myself, and then they just tell me "Kekko desu" (Im alright) but after I said my lines, she wanted to keep hearing more. I panicked and looked at Dale choro and said "HELP!" He laughed and said "Good luck, Keep going". So I panicked and just started teaching about the gospel. After a couple minutes of me struggling, he started to help and we were able to teach her a lesson for a little while. Throughout the day, Dale choro and I ended up teaching 10 lessons total and gave away 2 books of mormon! I really enjoyed my time with Dale choro and learned so much from him that day!
Thursday- We had a meeting with our Dendo Shunin (Branch Mission leader), Mirata Kyodai. I think I have talked about him before, but he speaks english, so that meeting is normally a mix between Japanese and english, which is really fun! And I actually know what is going on, so thats always nice. Then we went back to the apartment and had our weekly planning session. This past week I have really been focusing on following the promptings of the spirit and acting on them. I have done a lot of research and I decided that I wanted to be more of an instrument in the lords hands. At the end of the planning session, I had the feeling that we should call someone. I told my trainer that we should pray, and then pick two names out of our old investigators list, and call them. So we prayed, and then picked a guy named Inomi-san. Beck choro called him, and the guy was very happy to hear from us! He asked us if he could meet with us, and he set up an appointment with us for Tuesday at 2!! How awesome is that!? Then the next guy we called, wanted to meet with us, but he lives in Osaka now, so we were able to send a referral to missionaries in Osaka to meet with him. I was very happy to have acted on promptings from the spirit, and for those promptings to pay off! When we were about to walk out the door, the sisters in our area called us and told us a member wanted to pick all of us up and had a surprise for us at their house. They also asked if we could share a message. When we got to the members house, they had prepared a huge dinner for us. It was called Sukiyaki! Which is like a big pot that sits on the table that cooks the food right in front of you! We ate soooo much and it was OISHIE!! (Delicious)
Friday- We had a zone training meeting so we traveled up to Fukuchiyama, where we talked about faith, and taking that step of faith towards christ. The zone leaders  likened it to the story of Peter in Matthew 14. The lord walks on water out to the boat, and peter says, "lord if it is you, let me walk out to you" and the lord told him to come. Peter then, took a step of faith, and stepped out of the boat, and started walking towards the savior. After taking a few steps, he started to doubt and sink, but he immediately turned to the lord and asked for help. The lord stretched forth his hand and pulled peter back up. We can liken this in our lifes because 1. Peter stepped out of the boat, and started walking towards christ. He took a step of faith. And 2. Because as soon as he started to doubt, and had a problem, and started to sink, he turned straight to the lord, and the lord immediately helped him. In out life, if we start to sink, if we immediately turn to the lord, he will pull us back up. Our mission president has given us a new challenge as a mission. We are going to read Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, and it has to be done by the end of December. I have really enjoyed this challenge! And as of right now, our mission is baptizing about 11-15 people per month. In a call with the area presidency, President Welch was impressed to promise the area presidency that our mission is going to double those baptismal numbers by May! I know that we can do that! There is a marvelous work going on in Japan right now, and I am so lucky to be a part of it!!
Saturday- Not much happened! We went home teaching with a member in our ward, to a different part of our area, and that was really fun!
Sunday- we had church, and it was fast sunday. I have really come to love fast sundays! During sacrament meeting, a lady named Mirata Shimai, got up and bore her testimony on missionary work. She said that when I first got here, she was kind of like "crap, he is young. We got a high school boy". She explained that she was really proud of me for all the work I am doing, and for connecting with the young men so well. It made me feel really good, because thus far, I havent felt like I have made a difference here yet. I really want to make a difference, and I felt like I had been too shy and not opening my mouth enough. So what she said was a big confidence booster.
Thats pretty much what happened this week! I hope you all have a safe and exciting week!  Be safe! Love you all!
Evans Choro

Pictures from a Zone Conference they had.

A Young Men's activity

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Can you say Food Poisoning?

Minasan, Konnichiwa! (Hello, All of you!)

So this week was sure an interesting one! Monday Night- most of Monday night we went with a member from our ward to a different city in our area to visit some of the less active members. The member ended up getting lost while we were out there, and it took us quite a while to get home! And Japanese drivers really make you car sick, so that wasn't too fun haha! After doing that, we went out to eat, and then met with the 2 sisters that are in our area as well, and did some planning for our area.
Tuesday- So Tuesday, at about 4 or 5 o'clock in the morning, I heard my companion get up and go to the bathroom. He was super sick. Me being the little trainee, I decided to follow in my trainer's footsteps and I woke up sick as well. We spent that whole day inside, studying, sleeping, and watching gospel movies. Later that day, we found out that both of the sisters in our area were also sick with the same thing. And then later, after that, we found out the the branch president's wife, and the 2 other ladies in the primary presidency were sick with the same thing as well. 2 days before, after sacrament meeting, the primary presidency invited us missionaries to eat a bunch of food with them that they made for church that day. We found out that all of us had gotten food poisoning from that food that they prepared! How nice! So that was our day on Tuesday! haha!
Wednesday- We still weren't feeling our best, but later in the day, we were able to go do some dendo (missionary work) with our shibu kaicho (Branch president). Afterwords, he decided to take us to dinner to a place called Osho's (I think that is how you spell it). He bought us huge plates of food. We normally would be super excited to get that much food, but after having food poisoning, that huge amounts of food did not look very appetizing. So that was a struggle, but we did it! We were also able to share a message about the BOM with him and he said that it was perfect timing for that message because it had been on his mind recently/ and he needed to do better at studying the BOM. That made me grateful that I followed the promptings of the spirit.
Thursday-Thanksgiving!!! Thanksgiving isn't celebrated in Japan, so it was just another day for us. Nothing special, but it was still a good day! We met with a recent convert at a fancy cafe, and studied the BOM with her. It really tested my Japanese reading skills, but it was really good practice for me! She is super sweet, and bought us lots and lots of food haha!
Friday- We had district meeting on friday which meant we traveled up to Fukuchiyama. I always love going to Fukuchiyama because it is a little bigger of a city, and thats where Olsen Choro (My really good friend from highschool) and Anthony Choro (My MTC companion) are serving right now. We had a very good district meeting, and then went out to Indo Curry for lunch. Indo Curry is a favorite of missionaries and it is super good! After we got back to Nishiwaki, we road our bikes about 35-40 minutes, uphill, to a different city in our area to meet with one of our investigators. When we finally got there, we found out that he wasn't there, and he wouldn't answer any of our calls. We were really dissapointed. But we knew we were in the area for a reason, so we met with a member family and shared a message, and also did some finding around that area. 
Saturday- We woke up and did study and then went to the church to have a our weekly meeting with our Branch mission leader, Mirata Kyodai. He speaks english, and he is a really hard worker! After the meeting, he asked me if I would share my testimony with him, and something that I learned or did throughout the week. I dont know what I said to him, but it really touched him and brought him to tears. The spirit really touched him and it made me feel like I had finally helped someone here. Mirata Kyodai is someone that I will always have a good friendship with. 
Sunday- Yesterday was our Shibu Taikai (Branch Conference) which meant our mission president and his wife came! Luckily for big meetings, Mirata Kyodai translates, so I actually knew what was going on for once haha. It's funny how when we were in the MTC, we were always worried about the "Poor nihongen (Japanese Person) who didnt know what was going on". Those roles quickly changed when I got to the field. Now all of the Nihongen are worried about the "Poor American who doesnt know what going on because he doesnt speak the language". It really is a humbling experience to come to another country and have no idea what is going on haha! But after we had branch conference, we had a big food party! In Japan, after big meetings, everyone brings food to share, and then you have a good time, eat, and talk to everyone! There was SO MUCH food! And it was Oishie!! (tasty) 
Well, that was pretty much my week this week! When I got to Japan, I started rereading the BOM. I am now in Mosiah, and am loving it! This past week, I have really been trying to recognize and follow the promptings of the spirit. I have studied a lot about that and it is my major focus right now! This week my Ponderize scripture is 2Nephi 32:9 "But behold, I say unto you that ye must pray always, and not faint; that ye must not perform anything unto the lord save in the first place ye shall pray unto the father in the name of christ, that he will consecrate they performance unto thee, that they performance may be for the welfare of they soul." As a missionary, we are constantly praying. I have really gained a stronger relationship with my heavenly father through prayer. Whenever I am in need of guidance or comfort, or if I just need help, I pray. I know that through prayer, heavenly father will answer our prayers. I challenge all of you at home to pray! Pray and read the Book of Mormon!! The Book of Mormon is true! And if it is true, then Joseph Smith is a prophet! And if Joseph Smith is a prophet, he restored the gospel! I know that the book of mormon is true! It is what gives us the fullness of the gospel! I challenge you all to read the Book of Mormon, and when you do, Pray about it!! Heavenly Father will answer your prayers!
Thank you for all of your love and support this week! I hope you all had a very good thanksgiving! Everyone have a safe week this week! 
愛しています(Love you)


At the Shrine

Christmas decorations 

His Desk

Video he sent from the shrine.
For some reason, the videos don't play on my phone,
but they do play on a computer.
oh, and I have no idea how to turn the video upright. sorry! 

At the shrine

Sunday, November 22, 2015

The "West Armpit"

(On a Bridge In Nishiwaki)

θ₯Ώθ„‡ (Nishiwaki) -"West armpit" is the direct translation of our area's kanji!

Konnichiwa Minasan! 今ζ—₯は みγͺさん!

This week went by pretty quick! Though it was a tougher one, but I had some great experiences! Last week on P-Day, my companion and I went to a sushi restaurant where sushi comes by on a conveyor belt and every plate you take is 1 dollar! It was a fun restaurant with some really good sushi! We didn't teach as many lessons as we wanted to. We taught a total of 13 lessons, but it didn't feel like we taught that much. We had lots of lessons planned, but most of them bailed on us. (Which is pretty usual) We didn't have anyone to teach this week so we ended up doing A LOT of housing. Housing isn't very affective, and we maybe found 1 person that we can teach, but we still aren't even sure about them. This last Friday, I was able to travel up to Fukuchiyama and do some dendo (mission work) up there. Friday was our kokon (splits with our district leader) so my companion and the district leader went to Nishiwaki and I stayed in Fukuchiyama and my companion was OLSEN CHORO! (Who I went to high school with) For kokons, you usual spend 24 hours with that other missionary. Fukuchiyama is also where my MTC companion is serving right now, so it was good to spend some time with him, and also be able to do some dendo with him as well. 
We decided that Olsen 長老 (Choro),Sedrick 長老 (Anthony 長老's trainer), Anthony 長老, and I were going to try something a little different. Sedrick 長老 knows how to play hymns on his guitar, so we decided to walk up around the city and sing hymns and try and do some streeting. It was so affective!! There were points where both companionship were teaching two different people right next to each other! We handed out so many flyers and were able to have a lot of fun losing ourselves in the lords work. After we did that, Olsen 長老 and I split off from the other two missionaries and had a fun idea to make our bad Japanese even worse as a way to try and talk to people on the street. We would walk up to people and tell them that we were studying Japanese and had a question for them. We would then ask them what the word "quote" was in Japanese. They would have no idea what we were talking about so we would pull a quote from President Monson out of our pocket and hand it to them. Usually they would read it, and then again we would ask what the word "quote" is. Some of them were really helpful and tried to help us with our question, and then after they answered, we would start trying to talk to them about what we do and why we are in Japan. The first time we did it we walked up to a guy and asked him the question. After a minute of confusion about our question, we pulled out the quote. He really seemed like he wanted to help us. He read the quote, took off his glasses, and said in broken English..."I understand what you are trying to do, and I don't have time for this" and then he turned and walked away. We were caught. We couldn't help but laugh, because we were busted. But it ended up being a fun time using that to talk to people. The rest of the night we tried to find people, and were able to talk to lots, and share a little bit about the gospel. We made it fun while we were housing, because we decided we couldn't use the same approach that we had used at houses before. It was a bit of a challenge, but it made for some fun!
The next day, we got up and rode our bikes a ways a way to the branch presidents house because he needed help moving a fridge. So all four of us were able to go, and after helping him, we were able to share a message with him and all of us got to pitch in. I had an amazing time in Fukuchiyama with some amazing people. Olsen 長老 got to Japan 1 transfer before me, and I swear he could be a trainer already! His Japanese is amazing!!! We are so lucky to, not only be serving in the same mission in Japan, but also be in the same zone, and the same district, and have the opportunity every once in a while to serve together! 
Missionary work in the city is completely different than where I am at. I am in inaka (farm land) so it is a lot harder to find people. But the people in farm land usually have time to talk, and in the city people don't have time to talk. So there are pros and cons to both areas. 
In my area, we have 2 progressing investigators right now, and another investigator with a baptism date. So I am so excited for these people to learn and grow in the gospel! We were able to teach the two progressing investigators this weekend and it looks like they want to be baptized in the near future! 
This week was definitely a challenge for me, but it was joined with the most fun that I have had on my mission so far. I have learned a lot this week. About the gospel, and the language and the culture. But I've learned the most about myself this week. One think that is funny in Japan (well there are a lot of funny things because it is a completely different culture) is that the doorways are really small. I have hit my head so many times! It's fun being a tall read head in Japan! Im constantly being stared at and people love telling me how tall I am haha. One person that we were teaching told me that I look like an American celebrity. So that sure made me laugh! 
I hope everyone has a happy thanksgiving! Because I am serving in Inaka, it has been hard for me. I need to count my blessing because I have so much here that other missionaries and other people dont have. Have an amazing week and be safe! Thank you all for you support. I hope my rambling made a little sense haha! 愛していますみγͺさん! (Love you all)
エバンズ 長老

Hanging out with Elder Olsen, Elder Anthony and Elder Sedrick in Fukuchiyama

In a Park in Nishiwaki

Celebrating their investigator's birthday

More Food

His apartment 

Outside his apartment.  The red bike is his.

The cool conveyor belt sushi restaurant.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Week 2 in Japan

Minasan, Konnichiwa!! Genki Desu Ka?

    Yeah that is about all the Japanese I know haha! Ive been in Japan
for almost two weeks now! The language is coming. Definitely not fast,
but it is coming. Everyday I learn something new about the language!
This past week, my companion and I taught 18 lessons total.
    Last week on P-Day, we were able to go to a  yaki niku tabe hodai!
(All you can eat restaurant) It was super good! You grill the meat
that you get right on your table! Our days are super busy usually! If
we are not teaching a lesson, we are trying to meet people! On
Thursday night, we decided to house an apartment complex because we
were looking for a sister that lived there. In Japan, they have
something called a Kekko Box. It is a little doorbell with an intercom
on it. So you hit the button on the Kekko box, and then you talk to
them and tell them why you are there. If you are convincing enough,
they will come to the door. Otherwise they say Kekko Desu (We're
okay/we dont need it) or they will say IIdesu (Im good)- sometimes
that means "Good-Im coming". But usually people just tell us no
thanks! When we were at this apartment complex, my companion did the
first 3 houses, and no one was home. When we got up the door of the
next apartment, he hit the button and then said "Your turn." These
people answered and then I was forced to talk to them! They said they
were okay, and then we moved on to the next door. We rang that
doorbell and they were home as well. They also said they were okay.
The missionaries in my area call that the "new missionary power"
because none of the houses my companion tried, were home. But every
house I did, of course, answered! haha! The third house that I did, no
one answered, and when we were about to walk away, a lady walked up,
so we started talking to her. A minute later, we heard the kekko box
turn on, and then a man walked down stairs, told the lady to go
inside, and then slammed the door in our face! My companion hated
that! But honestly, I thought it was so funny! I knew things like that
would happen on my mission, so I enjoyed it!
    Since I have been here, there have been more rainy days than sunny
days. On Saturday, the rain would not stop! It just kept coming down
harder and harder! We road, in the pouring rain, 30 minutes to visit a
family in our ward and try and meet people over in that area of our
mission. We met with them for a little bit, and then started making
our journey back to the church, and it was raining even harder. I
enjoyed the rain, and have heard we will get lots of days like that!
It made for some good memories! That night, our branch had a little
dance party activity. The Japanese people always have parties with
food! They know how to do it right! So all of those activities I
    This week while meeting with a lady, we extended an invitation to get
baptized. She said yes and we are hoping for her to get baptized on
December 12th. Her name is Isogi Shimai. (Shimai means Sister) Please
keep her in your prayers these next couple weeks! Our job now is to
teach her and prepare her enough to get baptized on that day. It is
going to be hard to do it that fast, but we will see what happens!
    We have talked to lots of people this week. There was a lady we were
able to talk to on Saturday (In the rain) outside of her house. She is
not a member, but we talked to her about her family, and the church.
We taught her about the gospel and bore our testimonies to her.
Though, she doesn't understand it, she told us that when we talked to
her, she got a really good feeling inside. What she was feeling was
the spirit. I could feel it so strong and I know she could too. She
thinks it is amazing that young men would leave there families, and
travel around the world to talk about something they know is true.
    Finally being in Japan is amazing. I know that what we are doing is
right. I know that this gospel is true, and that the spirit testifies
to those we teach, that it is true. I know that even if we arent
getting investigators, we are planting so many seeds! Thats a big part
of what we are doing, is planting seeds.
    If any of you are having hard times in your life, turn to your father
in heaven in prayer, first. Go to him and I know he wont leave you
comfortless. When you have hard times, he is waiting for you to talk
to him. He is begging you to. I have seen him comfort me on my
mission. Whenever I am getting homesick or having a hard time, I turn
to him first, and pour my heart out to him, and he comforts me and
helps me through the day. I know he will do that for you as well!
    I love you all! Have an amazing and safe week!!!

Love, Evans Choro

Some pictures and Videos we received this week
He seems to be eating very well!

He said this was an ice cream that a new member bought him.
He said it was YUMMY! 

Bronwyn, He said that he has been using the BOM that you sent him.
It has been very helpful and a great study resource. Thank you!

A family home evening, that they went to.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Mailing address

I just realized that I never posted Alex's mailing address in Japan.
As always you can continue to email him at:

But if you want to send something, send it to:

Elder Alex Evans
Japan Kobe Mission
4-6-28 Shinoharahonmachi
Kobe-shi, Hyogo

Sunday, November 8, 2015

First week in Japan

Konnichiwa Minasan!!

I am finally in Japan after a VERY long week of traveling. As you may have heard, my travel group had quite a bit of problems getting here. On Monday, all of us Japanese missionaries got up around 3am and started our journey to the airport.We took an hour and a half front runner ride to downtown SLC, and then took TRAX from there to the airport. The travel plan we had said that we would fly to LAX and then to Tokyo Narita, and then to Osaka. When I went to print my boarding pass, it said "Sorry, a Agent will need to assist you." So I went over to an agent. Soon after me, 6 others from my travel group were with me talking to the agent. We found out, after about an hour of talking with the agent, that someone made a mistake in the travel department and our tickets had been refunded and they were sending us back to the MTC. That was probably the worst news we could have gotten in that situation. The other 10 Kobe missionaries had tickets and were already through security so they had no idea where we were. We were unable to say goodbye to any of the missionaries heading to other missions in Japan, and were also not able to tell the other Kobe Japan travel group that we would not be continuing on to Japan. 

We got back on TRAX and headed back to the MTC. When we got to the front runner station, we waited 34 minutes for a train to get there. When we got on the trail, we were told that at the next stop (2 minutes away) that train would be heading back to the yard, and that everyone needed to get off and wait for another train that would be coming 30 minutes later. So we road to the next stop, and then got off and waited 30 more minutes for another train. In this time, we started talking to people that were at the train station with us. I started talking to a lady that was from Lehi. She told me her conversion story from 2005. She told me how god told her to go to the church across the street from her house just one time. And so she decided she would do it just one time. She went that following Sunday and felt the spirit so strong. So she went up to the missionaries and said "When can I get baptized?!" She was a golden investigator for sure! It was kind of fun being a missionary in SLC for the day because everyone wanted to talk to us. After waiting the 30 minutes for that train, we got on and headed back an hour and a half to the MTC. In all, it took us about three and a half hours to get back.

When we got back, they gave us new travel plans. Our new plans told us that we were going from SLC to Seattle to Tokyo Narita, to Osaka. They also got our keys reactivated, and got us new rooms. But for some reason, our keys did not reactivate so we could not get into any of the buildings, or even our own residence building. So that was a pain. We then, went to bed because we were all so tired, and had to do it all over again the next morning.

The next morning we got up around 3:30 and headed to the airport again. This time, our boarding passes printed. We checked our bags and called home. Then we got to get on the plane!! After sitting on our plane for an hour, the captain explained to us that this plan failed a engine computer test, which means that plane would not be able to fly to Seattle. They got us all off of that plane and had us wait and hour and a half for another plane. When we got on that plane, it took an extra half an hour because that plane failed a wing balance test. But luckily they fixed it and it was ready to go. But at this point, we were going to miss our Seattle to Tokyo flight. When we got to Seattle, we ran to the gate of our plane, where we found out we had not missed our flight, but that it would be delayed for a while. That plane was broken also, and they had to bring in a new plane and get it ready to travel over the ocean.  After waiting in Seattle for a couple hours, they had to redo everyones boarding passes. But then we were able to get on the plane!

We flew 10 hours and 32 minutes to the Tokyo Narita airport. When we got there, we had missed our Osaka flight, but were told that we had been rebooked to a later flight. We got through Customs as fast as we could and started running to our next flight. We were met by a LDS travel agent who told us we would be spending the night in Tokyo instead of going on that later flight. So they loaded us up on a bus, and took us to a hotel. The hotel was super nice, and so was the breakfast. The next day, we got up super early again. We had to catch a bus to go back to the airport. We were then told by our travel agent that there were no flights going to Osaka from the Tokyo Narita airport but we would have to go to the Narita Airport to catch a bus that would take us to a different Tokyo airport an Hour and a half away. We passed the big city of Tokyo, and we also passed Disneyland Tokyo which was pretty cool! 

We did end up making that flight! It was our first flight that didn't have a problem! When we landed in Osaka, we were greeted by the AP's, who loaded up our luggage and then Elder Evelyn, (A senior missionary who works in the office) drove us 30 minutes to the Kobe Mission home. We then met Welch Kaicho and Welch Shimai. Our mission president and his wife. They are amazing people!! After that we went to have lunch and we were able to talk to the other Kobe missionaries who made it to Japan on time! They were so worried about us, and so happy to see us! We then had lunch and training, and then had dinner at the Welch's house with all of the missionaries that were going home. They said that that never happens so we were very lucky to be able to talk to all of those missionaries about their experiences! After dinner we went to bed in a 2 bedroom apartment, with 21 missionaries. That was pretty crazy. I slept on the floor.

The next day we got up, and went to a park overlooking Kobe, and watched the sun rise and played ultimate frisbee. After that we had training, at lunch, and met our new companion and found out where our area would be. My new Companion is Stredbeck Choro. He is from Lehi, Utah. He will be my first trainer! We are serving in the NISHIWAKI area! Its about an hour and a half from the mission home in Kobe. It is just a town, not a city. There are 4 missionaries in the area which include 2 sister missionaries, and my companion and I. But the people here are so sweet and very happy to have a tall red head in their area. Currently we have 2 investigators and a couple potential investigators. Saturday we went to set up an appointment with one of our potential investigators. He asked us if we have seen Jesus Christ. We said no. So he told us the only way we could see christ was with "The White Powder" meaning Cocaine. That made me laugh a bit, and was definitely the highlight of the day. I also ordered a bike on Saturday and that will be coming on Tuesday or Wednesday!

I love Japan and am so excited to finally be here after that crazy adventure! It is great to finally be in the place that I have been called to serve! Sorry for such a long post this week. I hope it wasn't too boring. Thank you all for your love and support! Love you all so much! Have a safe week!

 Alex and his friend Elder (Tanner) Olsen.  Tanner has been in the country for about 6 weeks now.  He is in the area just above Alex.  They are in the same Zone and the same district.  I'm sure it's nice to see a familiar face.

 I have no idea what this picture is.  Alex didn't include a description with this one.  I can assume that it is a vehicle driving in a tunnel, on the wrong side of the road. he,he!

 This is the view from his apartment.  He thought the mist on the mountain was cool.

 A couple of pictures from the MTC before he left.  
The girl in the middle is Kawamura Sensei.

 The one in the Middle here is Holbrook Sensei.

This is lunch on Saturday.  It was his companions birthday, so they went out for lunch.
It really looks good!!!! I think we need to plan a trip to Japan. :-)