Monday, August 26, 2013

Monday, August 26, 2013 - Week 33

Dear Mom and Dad,

Crazy to think that it's been another transfer already! Amazing how quickly 6 weeks can go by. I am still District Leader in Takatsuki and I'm still training Elder Baldwin. Just so you know, I ran into Elder Lewis at the Honbu (mission home) when I picked up Elder Baldwin at the beginning of last transfer. They are the same doki (group)

Costco this last week was good. It's about 30 minutes away by train, and then a 15 minute walk from the train station from there. I bought bagels, a couple of big bags of Quaker granola, a block of cheddar cheese, and a large jar of peanut butter for the Sisters in the district. The prices were all right, obviously the things which were imported were a bit more expensive, but some of the bulk Japanese foods were well priced. It was just like a regular old Costco - except prices were in Yen and such. I was even able to get a big slice of greasy American style pepperoni pizza for lunch.

Thank you so much for the package! I appreciate all of the goodies - the protein, pistachios, crasins, Rice Crispies, the nature valley bars - thank you so much!

Things have been going all right this last week. The sister who has a baptismal date for this upcoming Sunday is still doing well. She doesn't personally feel like she's ready to be baptized. She has had no problems accepting the commandments, and she really desires to know what we teach is true. We feel very much that she truly is ready and able to be baptized, but we are going to help her this week to strengthen her faith to take that next step of receiving baptism.

We found a new investigator this last week. He's a bit of an older fellow and he's very hard to understand. His speaking isn't clear at all - he half mumbles everything. But, he has honest desires to learn more about spiritual things. We're just going to ganbaru to understand what he says, and do all we can to help him. It should be fun!

Had a bit of an interesting experience while housing the other day. We found a Japanese lady who was Christian, and she was the type who thought she's already been saved. She thought it was great that we were teaching people about Christianity, but after we shared a little about the message of the Restoration with her she wasn't all that interested. She was nice enough, but it was really strange contacting somebody Christian. I walked away feeling that that's what dendo in more Christian countries might be like.

I'm healthy and happy as of now, and I can't see any reason why that would change any time soon. Things are really going well. Thank you so much for your love and support.

Elder Kyle Hutchings

Monday, August 19, 2013

Monday, August 19, 2013 - Week 32

Dear Mom and Dad,

It's been another good week. A bit of a slower week by way of finding and teaching, but good nonetheless. We have had quite a few of our investigators who have simply not been contacting us. We haven't been able to meet with them, so we've had more time for finding and other activities. It's still been very, very hot this last week. But, the evenings have started cooling down just a bit more, hopefully the days will start to follow.

Though this last week was a bit slower in general, we had a way good lesson with our Yakusokusha. It made the rest of the week's worth it to have that lesson go right. She's on track to be baptized soon, and it's really mostly a matter of helping her realize that she's ready and able to make that promise with God through baptism.

Just FYI, I got Marisa's letter last Saturday, tell her thanks and I'll try to write her back as soon as I can!

Mom, Elder Baldwin is from around Rexburg, Idaho, sorry for forgetting to answer your question.

Sorry this is a shorter e-mail, Elder Baldwin and I went to Costco with a member today and so we had to move e-mail to the afternoon and time is running short.

I love you and I am eagerly anticipating receiving the package!

Elder Kyle Hutchings

Monday, August 12, 2013

Monday, August 12, 2013 - Week 31

Mom and Dad,

Wow, Grandmas' birthdays already! Happy birthday Grandma Ingrid and Grandma Hutchings! And Elder Landon Swenson returned?! Goodness how the time flies!

Things are still good here in Japan. It's still way hot though! This last week we had a good bummer of a day when two of the people who had committed to baptism with the previous missionaries both said that they don't have any desire to receive baptism. One of them we had only met for the first time that day, so it was a bit understandable how things could change over about a month since he last met with missionaries. But the other one we had met a few times before, and he straight up said he wanted to stop meeting with us. It was very saddening, but we haven't become discouraged or frustrated. We understand that as missionaries all we can do is prepare, teach, invite, help, and pray. People still have their ability to choose.

We had Zone Conferences this last week, and it was great! We received some good training from Zinke Kaicho (President) and from the Assistants to the President. It's crazy just how many new missionaries are coming into this mission! Right now we have about 100 missionaries who are 4th transfer (6 months in field) or below, and that number is going to keep growing. There's been a lot of emphasis on making sure that everyone is trained properly and ready to take on more responsibility with less in field experience.

Being a District Leader and a Trainer is still a bit hectic for me, but I've got a better hold of what my responsibilities are and how to fulfill them. This last week I was blessed with opportunities to fulfill my role as a Priesthood leader. A couple of the Sisters in my district asked for a priesthood blessing, and so it was my privilege and honor to be a part of ministering to them. Beyond that, I had the opportunity to provide a priesthood blessing to one of their investigators. He has been having some problems with overcoming temptation regarding the Word of Wisdom, as well as recognizing answers to prayers. Ministering priesthood blessings to others has been a great blessing to me, and has reminded me of the great responsibility I have to remain worthy.

Last preparation day we went into Osaka and rode this big ferris wheel on top of a shopping mall. I'll send some pictures of that as well as some pictures of the apartment.
I love you and I'm grateful for all of your support and prayers.

Elder Kyle Hutchings
Sister Gomez & Elder Hutchings.  Sister Gomez is from Hawaii and is good friends with Auntie Laurie

Ferris wheel at the shopping mall in Osaka
Elder Hutchings in the gondola of the Ferris wheel
Osaka (view from the Ferris wheel)
Kitchen in Elder Hutchings' apartment

Monday, August 5, 2013

Monday, August 5, 2013 - Week 30

Mom and Dad,

Oh my goodness it's August! Crazy how the time flies! It's been nothing but hot, hot, hot here in Takatsuki. I don't have a clue when the temperatures will start to die down, but it doesn't seem to be coming any time soon. There was a super crazy rainstorm we got caught in this last week. We both got soaked, but it was a nice break from the heat.

Marisa is on the Drill Team?! Wow! That's great! Tell her congratulations for me!

It's been a way good week! We've been working very hard and doing our best. We've been met with a lot of success this last week. We've had 2 people become new investigators here, found a good few potential investigators, and had another one of our investigators accept the commitment to be baptized. It's always an exciting thing when one of God's children makes the commitment to enter into the path that leads to Eternal Life. But, it also means that there's a lot more preparation, fasting, and prayer on our part to help them prepare to receive that ordinance and make a promise with their Heavenly Father.

If there's one thing I've come to realize more and learned more this past week it's just how vital planning is. With all of the crazy busyness of being a missionary there are tons of things to do, places to go, people to call, etc. When we take a little time to carefully plan and prepare, we show the Lord our desire to do things right and well, and He blesses us to be able to handle the responsibilities He's given us.

I'm sorry, I still haven't taken any pictures. I've been really bad at that up to date. I'm not sure if I'll be getting much better at it...but I'll try!

In terms of the package, I can't really think of anything else I want or need. Recently I haven't had any problems with allergies, but it might not be a bad idea to have some Zyrtec just in case. I can't honestly think of anything I really need at the moment, but like I said before, if I think of anything, I'll let you know next e-mail (if you haven't already sent the package by then).


Elder Kyle Hutchings