Tuesday, April 19, 2011

April 2011 New Missionaries

This week, we welcomed an astounding amount of new missionaries into our mission! 22!!! It will be such a great blessing for this mission and the people in it. There were a lot of missionaries, but each one of their beautiful testimonies shine! We are so grateful to each of them for choosing to serve a mission. We feel blessed that it is the Japan Nagoya Mission that they were called to.

The next morning for the new missionary orientation, all of the new missionaries gathered at the Meito church. It was quite a scene to see all of the missionaries sitting shoulder to shoulder as an army for our Heavenly Father. Even their bags with their starting materials were lined up along the wall inside the office! What a scene!

All of the new missionaries and their trainers piled in for a group picture in front of the Meito church
before heading out to their first area!

Elder Cruz (left, trainer) and Elder Scaduto (Tokyo) - Takaoka
Elder Raffael Scaduto is very genki, happy, positive and delightful. He has
a great testimony and was truly obedient. A great missionary!

Elder Andre' Cruz is friendly and outgoing, and can be relaxed or strict when appropriate.  
He can be very strict with himself.  He lived for a while in Provo, Utah to study English.

Elder Rocha (left) and Elder Duarte (trainer) - Fujieda

Elder Frederico Rocha (pronounced  Hosha, for all you non-Brazilians) is from Sao Paulo.  Elder Rocha has been an exchange student in the US.  He loves to play soccer, travel and surf.  He is studying Business Administration and wants to be an executive.

Elder Danilo Duarte enjoys soccer, playing piano, church dances, and hanging out and talking with friends.  He plans on college and, of course, marriage after his mission.

Elder Kinnison (Tokyo, on left) and Elder Gordon (Tokyo, trainer) - Kanazawa

 Elder Christopher Gordon, from Spring, Texas, knew that if he put his trust in the Lord,
things would work out.  He came to Nagoya from Tokyo full of faith
and ready to serve wherever he was called.  He went back to Tokyo with the same attitude.

Elder Marshall Kinnison was very excited to teach the Gospel and teach the
Japanese people.  He was a very obedient missionary.

Elder Hollister (trainer) with Elder Matson (right) - Kasugai
Boise, Idaho is home to Elder Joshua Matson.  He likes Tai Kwon Do, ballroom dancing and Brazilian Martial Arts.  Elder Matson has written a book that he plans to publish when he gets home.  
Elder Taylor Hollister likes most sports, and wrestled at the
Air Force Academy before his mission. He is hard working,
competetive and likes cleanliness.  He planned to get lost in the work
on his mission, and has done a good job of that.

Elder Horne (trainer on left) and Elder Mechaileh (Tokyo) - Okazaki
 Elder Michel Mechaileh felt blessed to be in the mission, whether Tokyo or Nagoya.
He was so happy to be in Japan at all, after the tsunami.  He loved being in Nagoya.

 Elder Ryan Horne wants to raise a righteous family, and help others 
through the medical profession.  He loves to play piano 
and racquetball.  He tutored math, reading and piano before 
his mission.  Love constrains him to be a missionary.
Elder Jackson (trainer, left) and Elder Farnsworth - Nonami

Elder Peter Farnsworth comes from a family of 9 amazing people, and he is from Lindon, Utah.  It is common to have 25 people for Sunday dinner, all family. All of his brothers and his father have served missions. Elder Farnsworth is planning to get a master’s in Emergency Service and work as a firefighter, eventually becoming a Physician’s Assistant. 

Elder Marcus Jackson wants to become a dentist.  He says he has a fun
personality and hates to upset people.  

Elder Jessop (trainer, left) and Elder Kerksiek - Hamamatsu

Herriman, Utah is home to Elder Axel Kerksiek.  He is the youngest of 9 children, 
and has lived in seven countries for at least two years each.  He loves astronomy and astrophysics, is fascinated by machines, and plays the piano.  He loves to laugh and make others laugh, but he is also kind and understanding.  
He puts others ahead of himself.  

Elder Terry Jessop's favorite sport is tennis.  He also enjoys boating and piano.  He looks forward to having a large family and serving a mission with his wife. Someone who knows him says he is the kind of person who does whatever he is asked, and does it as soon as he can.  He is dependable, very service oriented and cheerful.

Elder Kekauoha (trainer, left) and Elder Danielson - Okazaki
Santa Monica, California is home to Elder Broderick Danielson.  Elder Danielson
plays the piano, and tenor and soprano saxaphones.  He was in marching band,
jazz band, pep band and wind ensemble.  He has been a good student with good
grades and he is a good communicator.

Elder George Kekauoha is from Hawaii, but has also lived in Maryland and Japan. He says his family is the greatest!  He enjoys gardening, yardwork (Wow!), building, playing piano, guitar and ukulele, and sports.  A few of his many goals are to have a farm, an eternal family, and time to serve others.  He enjoys talking to people, and knows he can do anything he puts his mind to.  He loves the feeling of having the 
Holy Ghost with him.

Elder Kervinen (trainer, left) and Elder Gish - Ichinomiya
Elder Zachary Gish, from Highland, Utah, loves to snowboard.  He plays the guitar
and writes music and likes to learn random facts.  He is also interested in mythology.
He loves classic cars and wants to restore one someday.  His goal is to become a dentist.

Elder Niilo Kervinen is a social person and a team player, is positive and optimistic.  
He also knows that studying the scriptures is the most powerful tool to get 
to know God.  He is serving a mission to show gratitude to God for his blessings.

Elder Kutney (left) and Elder Roberts (Tokyo) - Seto
Elder Justin Roberts was mature and so focused on his mission.  He was completely happy
to be in Japan and part of the Lord's work.  He felt he was exactly where the Lord
wanted him to be and found great joy in the work.  He had great goals for his mission
and worked hard to make them happen.
Most of Elder Terrance Kutney's goals revolve around the Gospel.  He hopes that whatever job he has will actually help or improve people's lives.  He says he is level headed and gets along with most anyone.   

Elder Madsen (Tokyo, left) and Elder Holden (Tokyo, trainer) - Ueda
Elder Jared Holden felt such great love for the people.  He was willing and ready to
go and work.  He savored everything he learned while he was in Nagoya and
developed a love for the Bairds and a greater love for the Gospel.
He said, "I'm on a mission, it is hard, and I love it."

Elder Nathan Madsen, from Boise, Idaho, came to us just before going home,
but worked for success.  He felt he learned a lot about missionary work and felt a lot of love.

Elder Miura (Tokyo, left) and Elder Ogaki (trainer) - Suwa
Elder Tsubasa Miura was very grateful to have served in the Nagoya Mission
and was sad to go.  He was willing to serve wherever he was and do his best.
He said that he experienced a lot of things that were meaningful.

Elder Shunya Ogaki will continue his studies in 
early childhood education after his mission.  After he retires, 
he wants to serve a mission with his wife.  He says he is usually quiet, 
but he is good at talking with people. 

Elder Otahara (trainer, left) and Elder Eguchi (Tokyo) - Ueda
Elder Junpei Eguchi was determined to serve and do his best.  He said
he wouldn't forget the Bairds and this mission, and his goal is to be like the Savior.

Elder Koudai Otahara is blessed to have 10 people in his very faithful family. He loves talking with people, especially foreigners using a different language. He also enjoys music and dancing. He is outgoing and happy.

Elder Chubak (trainer, left) and Elder Christensen (Tokyo) - Ogaki
Elder Russell Christensen was so excited to serve the Lord in Japan.  He came
with a love for the people.  He knew of Heavenly Father's love for us all
and was ready to work and share all he knew.

Elder Austin Chubak, from West Valley City, Utah, fit with the area and people here and
loved his time here.  He hoped to go home with the peace of mind that he did exactly
what Heavenly Father wanted him to do.  He felt he grew a lot while he was in Nagoya.
He was a great blessing to the people here.

Elder McGahan (Tokyo, left ) and Elder Pearson (trainer) - Fukuroi
Elder Trevor McGahan was very teachable.  He let everything that he learned in
Nagoya seep into him.  He was an excellent missionary and enjoyed the time here.

Lehi, Utah is home to Elder Michael Pearson and he is the sixth of seven children.  
Missionary work is big in his family.  His grandfather wrote the original discussions for the church.  
His parents run a website for missionary moms.  Everyone in his family plays a musical instrument.
Elder Reynolds (trainer, Tokyo) and Elder Shimamoto (Tokyo) - Kasagai

Elder Yuki Shimamoto was genki and very good as a missionary.
He was willing to work very hard.

Elder Michael Reynolds, from Elwood, Kansas, loves learning languages, music
and exercising.  He was ready to make a huge impact when he came to Nagoya.
By the time he left, he said he had seen many miracles and gotten to know
some of the best people he had ever known.

Elder Prince (Tokyo, left) and Elder Ring (trainer, Tokyo) - Takaoka
Elder Jordan Ring, from Saratoga Springs, Utah, loves art.  He loves to teach and
hoped with all his heart to share the Gospel of joy and salvation with many people.
He  really was genki and happy and felt like he learned how to put the missionary
principles into practical application.  He had the ability to learn from whoever was around him.

Elder Keven Prince felt the Lord strengthening him as a missionary.  He tried to follow exactly
what the Lord expected of him.  He was ready and obedient on his mission.

Elder Shimajiri (left) and Elder Ito - Inuyama
Elder Yoshiya Ito's home town is Hashimoto, Wakayama, Japan.
He has three older brothers.  Elder Ito majored in Spanish and culture,
and studied Spanish art history in Leon Spain as an exchange student.
He also loves to play basketball and soccer and is interested in sports management.
Elder Naohiro Shimijiri also comes from a wonderful family of 10.  He and two siblings are members of the church.  Elder Simijiri’s dreams are to share love and humility and be a good example.  He is good at focusing on one thing at a time and getting it done.

Elder Correia, left, and his trainer, Elder Skankey
Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil is home for Elder Nicolas Correia.  He loves to listen to music, read the newspaper, enjoy a bike ride or drive a car.  He is also interested in politics.  Elder Correia plans to study business administration.  

 Elder Bryce Skankey enjoys soccer, technical help with theatre,
and looking through telescopes.  He is optimistic and proud to be a geek.

Sister Shaver (left) and her trainer, Sister Wilcox - Takayama

Sister Maricella Shaver comes to us from Orem, Utah.  She enjoys reading, writing and cooking.  She loves the ah-ha moment when she figures something out and is able to fully understand it.  She will decide what to focus on for college after her mission.  She says she is extremely shy, but gets along well with people and loves talking to them when she gets to know them.  She was blessed to be sealed in the temple with her family when she was eleven. 
From Provo, Utah, Sister Marie Wilcox comes from an amazing family who love education and science.  She has already graduated with a degree in biochemistry and finds she loves organic chemistry.  She is a talented seamstress, plays piano, organ and trombone.  She picked up Japanese by watching Anime in Japanese while she was in bed for two years with an illness.  She is hard working and humble enough to ask for help when needed.  She learned from her illness to submit to Heavenly Father's will.

Elder Cragun (Tokyo, left) and Elder Wilden (trainer, Tokyo) - Fujieda
Elder Aaron Cragun came to us as a new missionary.  He was excited but nervous about the
language.  One of his goals was to leave areas better than he found them.
He learned much while he was in Nagoya and he worked hard.

Elder Alexander Willden, from Cedarburg, Wisconsin, likes guitar and song writing.
He was a little sad when he went back to Tokyo.  He loved being in Nagoya, but he
probably enjoyed Tokyo every bit as much.  He felt very blessed as a missionary and learned
a lot about himself and his Heavenly Father.  He knew he was meant to be in Nagoya.

Elder Wilson (left and trainer) with Elder Hilyard - Kanazawa
From Bountiful, Utah, Elder Chad Hilyard loves soccer and music.
He has played guitar and drums and sung with the concert choir.
He especially enjoys singing religious music.

One elder in the mission says Elder Samuel Wilson is easy to talk to, friendly,
and a solid kind of calm, keeping hope and faith even when things are bad.
He played football in high school and enjoys reading.

Tsunami Memories

This letter may bring back some memories:
Missionary Reassignment Update

Dear Parents and Friends,
Many of you may have already seen the press conference that Elders
Holland and Evans held about the recent news regarding the
missionaries in the Tokyo and Sendai missions.  Here are a few more
details to their announcement.

Your missionary is going to be relocated to one of the following three
southerly Japanese Missions; Fukuoka, Kobe or Nagoya. The list
attached tells you which Mission they will be assigned to.

Tomorrow, starting from 09:00am all the missionaries from this mission
will board one of three buses, each going to one of those
destinations.  We expect your missionary will contact you once he or
she has made it to their reassigned mission area.  The length of this
reassignment is still not yet known due to the unpredictable events
that have resulted from the recent earthquake.  There are a number of
factors that prompted this action. Risk of increased radiation levels
reaching the Tokyo area, predicted shortages of fuel, food, and water
following transport disruption and panic buying are factors that have
most potential for health risks, and the health of these missionaries
is the priority. Also, the church wants to provide a place so the
missionaries can continue to work. By moving missionaries we will
relieve the members of the burden of helping missionaries if anything
serious happens.  We would like to reassure you that your missionary
is safe.  There is nothing more important to us than the safety and
happiness of your missionary.  We also want to thank you for your
sincere prayers and concern.

Very best regards,
The Tokyo Japan Mission Office

Monday, April 18, 2011

Tokyo is Coming to Nagoya

Following the Tsunami and with the nuclear disaster, the decision was made to evacuate missionairies from Tokyo until it was determined to be safe to be in the that area.  We were blessed to have 55 wonderful missionaries sent to us, but it was for all too short a time.  We loved them while we had them!  A few of them are in the April 2011 New Missionaries blog.  Here are the others.

Sister Naomi Asai

Sister Asai is From Flushing, New York.  She loves traveling, learning new
languages  and guitar.  She wants to become a bridge between America and Japan.

Elder Ross Barton

Elder Barton is from Kapolei, Hawaii.  He enjoys scuba diving, movies, and learning
Japanese.  He wants to marry in the temple and have a huge family.  

Elder Benjamin Bates

Elder Bates loves theatre, books (both reading and
writing them) singing, and eating Japanese food.   He wants to study
literature at Oxford and become a famous novelist.

Elder Brandon Bednar

Elder Bednar is from Centerville, Utah and enjoys lacrosse, golf, basketball, guitar
and film making.  He's like to work for an advertising firm.  

Elder Blair Bryant

Elder Bryant comes from West Jordan, Utah.  He likes
billiards, ping-pong, long boarding and jumping.

Elder Scott Bullock

Elder Bullock did a marvelous job of understanding the culture of the
mission and helping to blend the Tokyo missionaries into the mission.
He has great leadership ability, keen spiritual insights, and was greatly respected.

Elder Brian Campbell

Elder Campbell comes from Lodi, California.  Basketball, reading and computer
 programming are his loves, and he hopes to get a degree in Political Science.

Elder Hattahai Chumuangwapee

Elder Chumuangwapee is from Khonkaen, Thailand.  He dreams of
becoming the top man at a large hotel some day.

Elder Drew Darlington

Elder Darlington is from Flagstaff, Arizona.  He likes sports, piano, surfing
and longboarding.  He wants to follow in his father's footsteps and become a dentist.

Elder Caleb Flint

Elder Flint  moved to Payson, Utah just before his mission.  He
plays trumpet, runs, and plays basketball.  He's looking to graduate from BYU
Business School and get a combined MBA/Law degree at Harvard.

Sister Chiaki Fujita

From Kumamoto, Japan, Sister Fujita loves music, reading, sign language,
drawing and learning other languages and foreign cultures.  She
dreams of becoming a teacher and traveling to Greece and Venice.

Elder Komei Fukushima

Elder Fukushima is from Kumamot, Japan and loves
all sports.  While on his mission, he was still working on his dreams for the future.

Elder Mineki Furugen

Elder Furugen comes from Okinawa, Japan.  Basketball,
ping pong, baseball, cars, and natural things, especially the sea,
are what he enjoys.  He also likes clothes, because he wants to become a tailor.

Sister Yumiko Harada

From Ibara, Okayama, Japan, Sister Harada loves music
more than about anything.  She hopes to become a better person
through practicing Christlike attributes.

Sister Momoko Inoue

Sister Inoue, from Kumamoto, Japan, likes listening to music, singing, piano
and clarinet.  After her mission, she plans to get a job.  She says the Atonement of Jesus Christ
 is the most important thing in her life. 

Elder Kazuyuki Kameya

Elder Kazuyuki Kameya is from Kuriyoshi, Tottori, Japan.  He likes all sports,
especially soccer.  He hopes to become a teacher or accountant.

Elder Tyler Keith

Elder Keith comes from Ontario, Canada.  He enjoys all kinds of sport, learning
Japanese, and making new friends.  He is headed to college after his mission.

Elder Yuyu Kikugawa

Elder Kikugawa is from Ehime, Japan.  He likes oranges and the
beautiful Sakura trees of Japan.  His goal is to become like Christ and have a happy family.

Sister Miyori Kohatsu

From Okinawa, Japan, Sister Kohatsu loves colors.  She
also is interested in history.  She hopes to become a more righteous
person and find a good man to marry.

Tokyo is Coming to Nagoya, II

Following the Tsunami and with the nuclear disaster, the decision was made to evacuate missionairies from Tokyo until it was determined to be safe to be in the that area.  We were blessed to have 55 wonderful missionaries sent to us, but it was for all too short a time.  We loved them while we had them!  A few of them are in the April 2011 New Missionaries blog.  Here are the others.

Elder Shogo Kyotani

Elder Kyotani, from Kwachinagano, Osaka, Japan, likes to race bikes and cars, and he
also likes basketball and wheelchair basketball.  He wants to own a bike shop
some day and be a businessman.

Elder John Lewis

Elder Lewis, from Peach Tree City, Georgia, loves sports, martial arts, reading,
and music.  He looks forward to finishing college, getting married, having kids and having fun.

Elder Nalan Ludwig

Elder Ludwig is from Elk Grove, California and  he likes wrestling
and music.  He thinks he may become a firefighter and wants to do lots of traveling.

Sister Jurika Maesawa

From Kumamoto, Japan, Sister Maesawa loves
sports, especially badmitton.   With that beautiful smile, she
probably smiles and wins the game.

Sister Akie Neki

Sister Neki is from Koayam, Japan.  She loves to eat!  She also loves sports,
namely tennis and table tennis, and she enjoys listening to music.  She
dreams of owning her own shop or cafe.    

Elder Bryant Nelson

Elder Nelson comes from bountiful, Utah and likes history, driving cars,
and having fun while being obedient.  One of his goals is to drive across America.

Elder James Oxnard

Elder Oxnard has already made friends at the eki!  He is from Yorba Linda, California.
He loves volleyball, reading, long walks on the beach.
He plans to graduate from UC Berkeley in Political Economics.

Elder Michael Remington

Elder Remington, from Ontario, California, plans to major
in statistics and start his own company.  

Elder Gabriel Ribeiro

Elder Ribeiro, from Gama, Brazil, likes to swim and listen to music,
read and eat.  In addition to having 10 children, he plans to learn
two more languages and be a successful businessman.

Elder Jace Ruppe

Elder Ruppe  is from Vernal, Utah and enjoys programming,
snowboarding and climbing.  He plans to return to college and make some
apps that he has thought up, and get a job as a programmer.

Sister Hatsue Shibata

From Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan, Sister Shibata loves reading, listening to music,
learning English, taking walks and watching movies.
 She hopes to study abroad and learn psychology to help children.

Elder Koichi Shitami

Elder Shitami comes from Hokkaido, Japan.  His interests are cars, soccer, reading,
music and movies.  He hopes to get a job at Nitori or work at a car repair shop.

Elder Naoharu Takae

From Kagoshima, Japan, Elder Takae loves to draw illustrations, read, and
learn English.  He wants to  go to BYU, and hopefully get a job
in Kagoshima doing illustrations.

Elder Diasuke Tauchi

Elder Tauchi is from Yonego, Tottori, Japan.  He loves to watch soccer
games and  listen to music.  After his mission, he is looking forward to marriage.

Elder Benjamin Taylor

Elder Taylor, from Salt Lake City, Utah, loves violin and piano and  is a runner.
His future dreams include having a family, being a politician,
and sharing the Gospel throughout his life with music.

Sister Yumiko Utsumi

Sister Utsumi is from Hyogo, Japan.  She like drawing, singing, and learning
English.  She wants to study psychology and become a therapist. 

Elder Benjamin Willard

Elder Willard is from Roosevelt, Utah.  He loves soccer, sports, reading, math,
Spanish and the Gospel.  His goal is to become a seminary teacher.  

Elder Thomas Wyman

Elder Wyman comes from East Lyme, Connecticut.
Juggling, unicycling, surfing, snowboarding, skiing, ping pong 
and bagpiping are his interests.  His goal is bicycle across America the long way.