Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Video of Adventures from MTC and Nagano

It has been an amazing year!! Here is a video created by my sister Jasmine of some of my adventures in the MTC and my first area, Nagano.

Transfer 7, Ran Out of Star Wars titles for this one

Elder Jackson already back from Nagano! Couldn't keep this pirate away haha!


   This week was my first week as Sempai! It was way chill. We did a lot of finding. Me and Elder Beck split our investigators in half so now I'm back down to 5 investigators. Going to bring that back up soon tho!

   Elder Beck's new bean is Elder Klein from Mesa, Arizona! He is way cool. And I have transfer 3 Elder Laumatia so we have been teaching and practising a lot of Japanese in our apartment. It is also more lively around here with the 2 young ones and me and Elder Beck's crazyness. Haha.

   Elder Laumatia and I have been doing a lot of OYM and finding. We are both trying to improve. It has been pretty good so far, but no one new yet.

  We also had Stake Conference for the Nagoya East Stake. Which is a huge stake. We met at the stake center in Meito for the Saturday night session. President Yamashita did a roll call and introduced all of the missionaries serving in the stake, which I think is about a 4th of the mission, because there were a lot of missionaries. Including 3 of my past companions and friends. It was way cool.

  Sunday morning we met in a big cultural center so it felt a lot more like General Conference haha. It was way cool. The Missionaries all did a special musical number and sang our mission song "Army of Helaman" (Nagoya Mission ver.). And many awesome talks were given. It was a great spiritual meeting. It is always excited to me to see the Saints gather together in remembrance of the Savior, knowing that even though we come from different places, we are all Heavenly Father's children. And isn't that just fantastic?

   This week is our Halloween party that we are putting together, hope all goes well, it should be fun. Better still, we are going to find new investigators. We will go forth in the faith just as Ammon did. And we will never forget that we are not alone as we labor in the Lord's kingdom.

   Also please note that next week's P Day is moved to Tuesday due to a Holiday that gives us more dendo opportunity. So I will see you all then! I love you and pray for you each by name quite often. As always, have a great week.

HOIZA! (Hope Of Israel Zion's Army)

Elder Watkins
Steak Conference!!!

Missionaries assembled

Reserved seating for Senkyoushi

Elder Klein! New bean chan!


Tu'Akoi and my new brother!

Laumatia Choro and the church leaders

A gathering of Zion

Cultural Center


Saturday, October 25, 2014

It's Time to See What I Can Do, Test the Limits and Break Through

Nakatsugawa and Seto Disrict picture, great team!

Gonna miss this sister.

Ezaki Airi from Nagano! So good to see her again!

Me and President and Sister Baird

 With this transfer call I have gained a new responsibility. I will be staying in Seto, but I will now be companions with Elder Laumatia, who just finished being trained here. So that means, for the first time ever, I am the Senior Companion.

   I am so excited and so nervous about this new leadership position. I will be leading the dendo efforts of our companionship, seeking revelation, and teaching more lessons. No more will I be a shadow or a sidekick. I am in charge, and I am humbled by this trust from the Lord. I am nervous, but I am ready.

   Elder Beck will also stay in Seto, but now he will be training a new missionary, another bean chan. And also Elder Wheeler is going to Ueda where I went on many kokans when I was in Nagano.

   And my old friend, TuAkoi choro is training again, that means I have a brother! haha.

    So this week was crazy! First we had Zone Interviews. President and Sister Yamashita had a lot of great advice to share this time. They are giving out prizes to people who complete their Ninja pass off (Japanese missionary book) I am almost done with it. Went out to eat with the district too, that was fun. And I saw my friend Avarell Shimai for the last time before she goes home. I made a photo album for her with some Nagano pictures as a going away present. Gonna miss her a ton.

   Skip ahead to Sunday, when the universe bent in half and EVERYONE in the world came to church. Like I mean, unexpected people. First we saw Wakobayashi kyodai, a member from Beck's old branch in Ueda. Then I saw one of the Ezaki girls from Nagano. She remembered me and how I do Kamen Rider poses! lol. They were there for a Youth Conference tour with a bunch of other cool Japanese LDS teens. It was a party.

  Then the most random thing of all; in walks President Baird, the former president of the Japan Nagoya Mission. Whaaat?! I've heard so many legends of this guy, but I never thought I'd meet him. He was way nice and told us that we are part of the best mission in the church. So awesome.

    And today I have a cold, again. So boring. I've just been resting. But I am way excited for this transfer and way nervous and wah. Please pray for me in this new assignment, that I will have the spirit of revelation, and be able to see a baptism this transfer. It's gonna be good!

    This weekend is Stake Conference! Well I will see y'all next time. Love you all and take care.

Elder Watkins, the sempai
The Linimo Line

The Linimo Line

Assistants to the President, out to dendo, like pros.

Avarell and Campbell Shimai

Beck Choro with Baird Kaicho

Bowl perfectly broken, haha!!

Lamatia with Baird Kaicho

The book was well received, mission accomplished :)

The Nagoya Dendo Honbu (Mission Home)

Where it all began.



Photo Book for Avarell Shimai

Photo Book for Avarell Shimai

Made the ward news again!

Made the ward news again!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Black Burgers in Your Native Tongue

Bored at a store, haha!!

Bored at a store, haha!!

Happy Conference everybody! Saw it already? Well watch it again, I'm sure you will learn even more!

   We don't get it here until a week later for translation. And boy there was a ton of translation! With all the speakers speaking their own languages and being surrounded by Japanese, Portuguese, Canadian, and Australian people, watching conference became an inter-cultural experience. It was fun watching it with a bunch of good friends too.

     I learned a lot about caring for the poor, the Sacrament, and following the example of the Lord Jesus Christ. Most of all however, was the re-assurance that came to me that we have a living Prophet on the earth, with a capital P. Thomas S. Monson gave short remarks that ring true. We asked one wheelchair-bound member how it was, he replied that he had come to conference prepared with questions to which he found answers to as he listened with the Spirit. I also observed as I sat next to my friend, Sister Avarell who only has one week left of her mission, how important the gospel is to her, as she took careful notes and made thoughtful comments. I felt just how great and important it is that we have a prophet now in our day, what a gift from the Most High!

   Well folks this week our Zone has interviews with the President and this Saturday we have the great and terrible day of Transfer Calls. Please pray for me and my companion, I don't want anything to change this transfer for us two, but whatever the case, please pray that we will have another great transfer,  even better than the last, and that we will see a baptism in that transfer. We need your prayers. Help us to improve upon our weaknesses and go beyond our limits as we invite others to come unto Christ. As always, I am praying for each of you too.

    Brothers and sisters, I love you. I feel it is never not the time to show that toward everyone. Y'all have another great week too!

Much love,
Elder Watdawg Watkins

Birthday shout out to me ole buddy and good friend Sheldon Richey "Take what ya can, give nothin back" aarrgg!
Lama chan with the panda hat

General conference!!!

McDonald's special Halloween burgers!

I had the black one.

It was good!

Colored with squid ink I hear, has BBQ sauce. It was awesome. Bun tasted the same, just black.

Jelly Bellies! Sashiburi! (used to be full to the top lolz)

So much chocolate! But not too much ;)

All the Shimai at General Conference
Yamamoto Choro cooking some delicious Okonomiyaki
Yamamoto Choro cooking some delicious Okonomiyaki

All the Shimai at General Conference 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

My Old Master...

My daddy!!!
Billsy! I missed you!
District Train ride!

Our sleeping arrangement. haha!

It has been a long and fun weekend! I was beat!

  First on Thursday I went to Meito, a part of Nagoya City, the capital of the mission, on a Zone Leader Kokan. Our Zone Leaders are awesome. I was with Elder Arata, we dendoed in Nagoya City and talked about life. And man, their apartment is like a command center. It was cool. I have never dendoed in Nagoya until that time, guess now I'm a true Nagoya Missionary haha.

  The next morning, Arata choro and I took a train to Nakatsugawa for DTM. It was my first experience with city trains and it was PACKED! I was squished in a sea of Japanese city folk. When I got out I was sweating and felt like a dirty city person. haha.

   After that all 10 of us in the District took the train all the way back to Nagoya for our big Stake meeting. The Nagoya Japan East Stake, has 11 wards and branches and is said to be the largest Stake in Japan. We had a training with the members and all the missionaries in the Stake about iPads! We will be getting iPads this Christmas to use for dendo and family history. It is a really cool initiative by the church. It is an exciting time for missionary work.

   And because all the missionaries from the Stake were there, I saw a bunch of my bestest friends including Elder Bills from my doki, and my trainer, the legend, Elder TuAkoiiii!!!!!

  He has become something of a legend in the mission for his unorthodox ways of dendo and getting almost 30 investigators and 15 yakusokushas. Which is why he hasn't been transferred from his area since I last saw him many moons ago. And because it was late and stuff, it was arranged so he could spend the night at the Seto apartment with us. So we had the whole Toyota crew with us, making 8 elders for a night.  Crazy! We made katsu and talk about old times. The best thing was we have both grown since Nagano and I can speak Japanese to him now. It was like on Power Rangers when Tommy came back for a cameo appearance. So cool!

  We ran with them to the train the next morning and after saying see ya later (cause we we have a few stake activities coming up this month) Beck choro and I went off to Undo Kai. Basically an elementary school field day, which in japan is a big big deal. Our friend we teach was there and we cheered on her son Tatsuya on the white team! They won! It was a sunny and fun day.

 After that I was beat. And I slept well. But man, It is weeks like this that make me realize, again, how have a huge family here in the Japan Nagoya Mission. I always think of Alma 17:1-3 when Alma and the sons of Mosiah are re united and how they were filled with the Spirit and taught with power and authority from God.

  Well that's about it. Next week I will see them all again at General Conference in Nagoya. Looking forward to hearing from the Prophet with my brethren and shimai. I love this mission!

Love you all,
Elder Watkins

Happy Birthday to my good friend and teacher Aaron Brock!
Arata choro got his death papers! wa!

The first thing I've ever liked that had banana in it, soo good!

Kastu party!

Bikes at church

District Train ride!

Love these guys!

Love these guys!

Portuguese, Japanese, Tongan, and Americans having a feast. Only in the mish!


Moretti Shimai? haha

Teaching Kids Eikaiwa, they are crazy!

The Hawaiians!

TimTam Slam!

My first Tim Tam Slam! It's an Australian thing. :)

TuAkoi reading tha Bible

TuAkoi's planner covered in Missionaries. (Chiba choro is there too!)

Zone Leader's apartment. Bunk beds! I didn't have to sleep on the floor!

ZL Apartment!

Undo Kai!!!

Ball rolling race


Chicken fight!

Our boy Tatsuya!

Okinawa dance

Marching band

This is called Kumitaiso

These kids worked hard! I was impressed.

These kids worked hard! I was impressed.

Taking a bow.