Thursday, June 14, 2012

Hooray! Four Great New Missionaries, June 2012

The only thing better than getting new missionaries is watching them baptize.  We got four wonderful new missionaries this time.  Please meet:

Elder Ludlow, Elder Romero, (President and Sister Baird),
Sister Rogers and Sister Ishihara
 In case you can't read kanji, the sign at the right says this group of missionaries are all fabulous.  (Just kidding--about the sign, not the missionaries.)

Do think there are any butterflies in stomachs right now?

How can two sister missionaries who have traveled all day
 look so beautiful?

Dinner for four tired missionaries and off to bed.
Elders Kervinen and Ellsworth, AP's on left.

Next morning, they are all rested and ready to start training, but not before we get to be treated to a violin/cello rendition of "If You Could Hie to Colob."   
It was truly subarashii.

Sister Rogers and Elder Ellsworth, one of our AP's.

Sister Ishihara, left, with her new trainer, Sister Shimoji.
Notice the tissue (and if you have good eyes, you'll see a few tears
in Sister Ishihara's eyes.)
First, the spirit told President Baird to make these two companions.
Second, these two told President Baird that they were good friends.

Sister Inori Ishihara's parents and oldest brother all served missions.  
She is from Okinawa, Japan and plays the French horn and flute.  
She likes touching people's hearts by being bright, friendly, and optimistic.  
She has received many blessings from prayer.

Sister Shimoji is a very happy, cheerful person.  Sister Shimoji listened to 
General Conference and as they talked about serving a mission, 
she felt inspired to go.  Even though she got a good job, 
she quit it to serve a mission.

Sister Rogers, left, and Sister Hunt

Sister Rogers comes to us from Brisbane, Australia and has two sisters
 and six brothers.  She loves musical instruments and plays piano, violin, 
guitar and sax.  She also plays basketball, soccer, and has a black belt 
in Taikwando.  She will audition at the Queensland Conservatorium of 
Music after her mission.  

Sister Hunt loves to work. She also finds that music energizes
 her mind and spirit. And she enjoys a sincere conversation.
 While she loves to read, she finds that reading the scriptures
consistently is simply a feeling that can't be replicated
 with other literature or philosophy.

Elder Ludlow, left, with Elder Schade

Thousand Oaks, California is where Elder Matthew Ludlow 
calls home.  He enjoys basketball and football and loves competition. 
He hopes to eventually become a chiropractor.  

Notice Elder Schade's huge smile.  It makes a lot of people happy.
He loves being out of doors and also plays the piano.
He knows from experience that prayer is a powerful tool.

Elder Romero, center, with his trainer Elder Dinkel on left,
and Elder Gates on right (a threesome!)

From the great city of Provo, Utah, we get to have Elder Jose Romero.
  He is the youngest of 7 children and says his mother is an
incredible woman.  Elder Romero loves to rock climb, hike, bike,
 canoe and swim.  He loves a physical challenge, but he especially
 loves getting to know people better when he spends time with
 them outdoors.  He has had many wonderful spiritual experiences
 and is grateful for leaders who have taught him great things.

Elder Dinkel has a great smile that shows his enthusiasm for 
the work.   He knows lots of words and loves to use the big ones.  
Not everyone gets to train two people at once.

At the time of this blog post, Elder Gates has only been 
in the mission for  three months.  His trainer, Elder Dinkel 
says he's already very good with his kanji, takes part 
in lessons effectively, and is willing to share his great 
musical talent.  But the best thing is he is perfectly obedient. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Sad and Happy at the Same Time is Possible, June 2012

Another transfer week has occurred.  We were so sad to see seven great missionaries bid us goodbye, but happy at the same time.  They were superb missionaries.  They will go forward in their lives in great ways.  We send them our love and confidence in their goodness.

Of course, we can't send them away empty.  They are smiling,
but they are thinking, "Wow!  I'm going to miss Sister Baird's

Standing, L to R: Sister Goodale, Sister Inoue
Seated:  Elder Cruz, Elder Rust, Elder Brown, Elder Voss, and Elder Hollister

We love you all.  

Elder Michael Brown, says one of the other missionaries who worked with him, is a “way hard worker.”  He fills his schedule. Working hard, finding people, and teaching lessons make him happy.  He is very respectful to people.  One investigator said, “When I saw him, I thought that God can be seen in some people.”

Elder Voss has been called, "Tall, way tall!"  But this person also went on to say he is a very gentle person and a hard worker who helped make companions stronger and more reliable.  He is dependable.  And the best of all compliments:  "He was exactly obedient on his mission."

Elder Cruz was also exactly obedient!  He can work, work, work!  He is also talkative and he is a great Brazilian.  Another elder who knows him said he was determined, good at Japanese, and was a really great leader.  He is passionate about what he does.

Sister Goodale loves drawing, was a solo sister in the MTC, loves being outside and really loves talking.  She is also a great listener, always making any situation fun.

People who know Sister Inoue said she has very good English, she's crazy in a good way, and she is happy all the time.  She enjoys volleyball, cool guys (like the one who said these things about her!) and is very friendly to everyone.  She is always bright and smiling and loves children.

Elder Rust served as an AP.  He is always willing to help anyone at any time, and is always sensitive to other needs, especially those needing translation.  He  learned Japanese very well, in speaking, writing and reading, and is a very good translator.  He thinks before he reacts to situations and consistently leads by example.  He is well loved by everyone.

Elder Hollister served as an AP.  Having been trained for a year at the Air Force Academy, Elder Hollister has great exercise habits, is self-disciplined, exactly obedient, and a very hard worker.  He is always ready to help and serve in any way he can.  He is an excellent planner and lived and breathed missionary work.