Sunday, April 30, 2017

Street Vending Machines

Vui choro spent a good 5 minutes ripping the apartment apart looking
for his name tag the other day before we left. -Don't worry, he found
it because he was already wearing it...

  One of my favorite things about Japan is how simple it is to get a
drink no matter where you are. There are literally vending machines on
every corner. Sadly, the drinks are not as big as the drinks we have
in America, but nonetheless, they work. -About 5 weeks ago, when it
was still a bit cold outside, I lost one of my gloves in between the
apartment and the church. I figured it was a lost cause, but it was
okay because it was starting to warm up. Well, the other day, I was
feeling a bit thirsty, so on the way home we stopped at a vending
machine to buy a quick drink. I got my drink, and started to gird up
my loins to bike away, when all of a sudden I saw my missing glove
right below me, set nicely on a little electrical pole. The Japanese
people are amazing. They don't take what isn't theirs, even if it is
just a glove. Even 5 weeks after losing it, I was still able to get it
back. How cool is Japan? The sad part is that it is warm now, and I'll
never need that glove again haha. It's okay though, Japan is still the

    My companion also is really good at following the spirit when it
comes to going to McDonald's. He is really good at timing it just
right, so we are there when the Lord needs us. The other night after a
bowling activity, we were starving so we took a quick stop at a
McDonald's for a bite to eat. As we were sitting there, a lady walked
up to us and asked if we were the Mormon church. When we said yes, she
sat down at the table and explained that she used to take the lessons
and because of a couple thing before her baptism, lost contact with
the missionaries. She asked us if there was a way that she could meet
with the missionaries again, and take the lessons. We told her no and
to go home.... just kidding. We exchanged contact information and sent
her over to the sister missionaries in her area. The Lord works in
funny ways, even through a hungry Samoan and McDonalds.

  Ryo, the kid that walked into the church last week asking to be
baptized is doing AWESOME! He wasn't baptized yesterday because we
found out that he lives on the border of our area, and another Kyoto
area next to us which is technically the other area. So we are working
to get him more acquainted with that ward, and his baptism will be
held Saturday May 13th. We were able to meet with him almost everyday
this past week, and he even had a baptismal interview on Friday and
did wonderful. I've never seen someone take in the gospel like Ryo
has. He is such a great guy, and I'm so excited for him to be baptized
in a couple weeks! It's the perfect example of member missionary work.
His friend had already taught Him so much, so when we met him, he was
ready to go. I've learned so much about member missionary work since
coming on my mission. And seeing examples like this makes me want to
be so much better. You never know what's going to happen if you just
invite a family member to hear about the gospel. You might just get a
big surprise! The worst thing they can say is "no".

    Thank you all for the birthday wishes this past week! I actually
had forgotten it was my birthday until I woke up with Vui choro
jumping on top of me screaming happy birthday at the top of his lungs.
It was a great birthday, and I'm glad I was able to spend both of my
birthdays on my mission with Vui choro, who has become one of my best

Kyoto is great, life is good, and I don't want to be anywhere else! I
love you all more than....shoot. I'm out of ideas. But I sure love you
a lot.

Evans choro

Culture party at Eikaiwa
Lesson with Ryo during splits with Elder Mecham
Ryo after his baptismal interview

Sunday, April 23, 2017

It's a long one today!

I failed to write an email last week, so I will try and make up for it
in this email today. It's been a crazy last two weeks so I apologize
if my writing is all over the place! - I'll start with news from last

We had a lesson at a member's house with Elias, our friend from Utah,
and two of his friends from his work. One of his friends was from
France, and the other one is from Taiwan...we think. We had a nice
dinner with them that night, and then shared a message on the plan of
salvation with them. Towards the end of the lesson, Elias asked Eve
(the one from Taiwan) if she believed God was there. She said "ya
know, I kinda thought that he was there... but now after hearing this,
he has become a reality to me." It was cool to see things start to
click with them! It just strengthens my own testimony to see others
come to know something for themselves!

Last week, Vui choro and I were wanting to find a new way to find
people. A member of our English class told us that there was going to
be a "Samoan Festival" at the college down the street from us, so
being that Vui choro is Samoan, we thought it would be the perfect way
to meet lots of new people. So we headed to the college, excited and
ready to find some friends. we paid 2 dollars to get in, and sat down
in a...... lecture on Samoa... We ended up being stuck in the back of
a college classroom lecture on Samoa for an hour and a half, instead
of, what we thought was... a Samoan festival. It was a complete
failure, but one that we will always remember. It sure made me not
excited for college this fall...

The good news is, 2 days later we got a referral from a different
mission for an 18 year old boy named Masahiro. We gave him a call, and
he was so excited. The next day he came to church, and then after
church we had a lesson with him. He is so ready to receive the gospel!
Even though it was just our first time meeting him, we gave him a soft
baptismal commitment, to which he said absolutely yes to! He is such a
great kid. And to make it better, he is a basketball player. Nothing
more perfect than that!

This week was also awesome! We were able to have a lesson with one of
our progressing investigators named Hikari. He has been meeting with
the missionaries for a little while now, so we had a lesson on 3 Nephi
11, and then we used the power from Elder Costa at the last general
conference, and watched his talk together. After watching the talk, we
were talking to hikari. He said that he isn't really doing everything
he needs to do to follow Jesus Christ fully, and that he really wants
to work on repentance but it is hard. We explained repentance a little
more to him, and then we were able to commit him to a baptismal date
in May! He said before that he didn't fully understand the meaning of
baptism and why he needed to do it. But now, he said he has no
opposition and wants to do it. So we are way excited for that with

I also had the chance to go back to Otsu this week to work with some
of the elders over there. When we were walking back to the train
station to head home, a kid rode past us on his skateboard, with hard
core rap playing super loud. We said hello, not thinking anything of
it. But the kid stopped abruptly, turned around and yelled back at us.
I didn't fully understand what he said, and I thought he was probably
just a drunk dude. But we turned around and started talking to him.
His name is Sakamoto and he is 17 years old. And no, he was not drunk
haha. He thought it was way cool to be talking to foreigners and we
talked a bit about what we do as missionaries. He thought it was
awesome and agreed to meet with the missionaries over in Otsu!

And last! If you are currently scanning this email because it is so
long, stop scanning now, and read this last part.

After finishing up church on Sunday we had a big meal with the Ward.
As we were heading to the cultural hall, the Bishop came up to Elder
Vui and I and said that there was a man downstairs that wanted to talk
with us. We ran downstairs to see who it was, and there was an 18 year
old kid from China standing there. We started talking to him and asked
why he came to the church today. He told us that he has a friend who
is LDS and he really likes the LDS people and that he has interest in
learning. We told him we would love to help him, and we invited him to
come join the Ward feast! As we were sitting there talking, he pulled
out his phone, and got on his dictionary. He leaned over to me,
showing me his phone with the word "baptism" on it and said "how do I
receive this?" - I about laughed my head off. This had to be a dream!!
I told him that after the Ward lunch, we could sit down and talk to
him! So after lunch was over, we went in to a room and had a great
lesson on the restoration. He also had a bunch of questions that we
answered! And then we committed him to be baptized next Sunday after
church. He is so excited. We gave President Welch a call to see if we
could really baptism this kid next week, and he gave us the Go-no go!
This week we will be meeting with him everyday and getting him
prepared for his baptism next Sunday. Miracles still exist!

Anyways, since this is so long, I'm going to stop talking now! I love
you all so much and hope you have a great week!!

Evans Elder

Monday, April 10, 2017

Sakura, Sakura, Sakura

This week was great! I only crashed my bike once, and spilled boiling
hot curry on me once! Life couldn't be better!

The Sakura are blooming here in Kyoto, and holy crap it is pretty.
It's definitely a blessing to be serving the Lord here at this time.
This past week I was able to do splits with two elders, both of whom I
worked with in my last district in Otsu. The first one was with one of
the craziest, funniest Brazilian boys on the planet, Elder Luciano. It
was so fun to work with him again, and have so much fun with him. We
met with a kid for the second time that Elder Molina and I met the
week before named Nakatani. We were able to have a great meeting with
him and hopefully he gets progressing from here. Elder Luciano is such
a ball of fire. He doesn't speak too much English, but he is sure
getting better everyday. I sure love that kid. The second person that
I was able to do splits with was Elder Bodily, who I lived with in
Otsu. It was good to work with both of them, and get to learn with and
from them. Working with all sorts of different missionaries is my

Yesterday and the day before, we were able to watch general
conference! It was so good! I really liked President Monsons talk. It
was short, but he talked about some really important principles of he
gospel. He didn't have lots of time to speak, but he talked about the
Book of Mormon. I thought his words were powerful, and I have set a
goal to read the Book of Mormon daily as he has asked. I know that the
Book of Mormon is the word of god. It is the center of the church.
It's holding it all together. And I have come to know that it is true
since coming on my mission.

Life is great. I'm happy. I'm healthy. And I'm loving being a
missionary and a representative of Jesus Christ in Japan. Life
couldn't be any better.

I lubu you all more than Welch kaicho loves Sakura.

Elder Evans

Sunday, April 2, 2017

I'm freaking tired mate!

Splits with Elder Yardley

As Vui choro would say... "I'm freaking tired mate". This profound
statement about sums up my week. I'm freaking tired mates! But I
couldn't be any happier. Life being a missionary in Japan is TOO good.
Especially in the city of Kyoto.

This past week I was able to work with a couple different
missionaries, which is always my favorite. I worked with Elder Molina,
who is from Bolivia and is a really good teacher, and I also worked
with Elder Yardley, who I lived with for a couple months in Okayama.
It was great to work with these two this week and learn from them.

With yardley choro, we went to a beautiful river that cuts right down
the middle of Kyoto, and tried to meet some new people over there. We
talked to so many different people, and had an absolute blast. But for
some reason, we weren't able to retain any of them. Some of them were
the most interest people, but they didn't have time to meet, or had
different things going that made it so we couldn't meet again. It was
frusterating knowing that we were doing our best but nothing was
coming. This really helped me to know that I am on the lords timing
and not mine. I learned how I need to better follow the lord will
rather than forcing mine upon him. I love being the lords servant and
having opportunities to learn both in the good times and the bad.
Japan is the best, and I'm happy with where I am at.

Today we are on our way to a leadership council in Kobe, but we are
taking the long way and playing some soccer in Nara for p day. It's
fun to be back in Nara with Vui choro.

I love you all more than inaba choro loves cologne✨

Evans choro

Morning run with the Katsura Elders

District Meeting

splits with Molina Choro