Welcome to Elder Joseph Gandy's Mission Blog. You will find Joseph's letters and other pertinent information about him and his work in the Japan Fukuoka Mission.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Dear Family

Everything has been going super well. I have now been in Japan for a little over a month. Time is so crazy it seems to be going really fast. So much has happened in just this last week. Zone conference was amazing I learned so much.We have about 18 missionaries in our zone but it covers about the second biggest areas in the mission. It was funny we had 14 Elders all stay in just a four man apartment. Some even had to sleep on the balcony it was so crowded. We also did some exchanges this week also. I actually went with a Japanese Elder for a half hour or so to do some streeting. He knew a little bit of English but it was amazing at well we could actually communicate. Then Zone leaders came over for a day and it was amazing. We had set some pretty good goals. Halfway through the day we completed almost all of our goals. We met so many different people who really seem like they have been prepared to receive the gospel. Being a missionary is so great. I feel so blessed for all of the opportunities we have to tell people about the church. I'm so grateful for all of the time we have for study also. I learn so many different things every week. How you study in the morning really kind of sets up the day for you. Countless times throughout the day I'll be reminded of what I studied that morning. Recently I've learned more about the power of prayer. Through prayer we can do so many things like receive revelation, guidance, and physical/spiritual strength. We seem to be praying for everything. Something I learned in seminary was to always have a prayer in your heart. Now I finally understand what it truly means to have a prayer in your heart. It honestly seems like I'm praying every minute. I'm so very grateful for all the prayers that are being said for me. Thank you all. I pray that all continues to go well. I love all of you so much.

Love Elder Gandy
ギャンディ 長老

Monday, May 21, 2012

Dear Family,

It was great getting your e-mail. It sounds like everything is going great. That is so awesome that Joshua won those awards but its not very surprising やっぱり he is very talented. That is why I always brag for him and still do.

I think that is so fun that my friends still come over and hang out. Seems like they are all doing really well. I can't wait to find out where Ferrin and Shorty are going on their missions. We figured it takes about 10 or so days for a letter to get here. Usually when we check the mail we just get a bunch of pizza coupons that make the price half off which is still double the price of pizza in America so its not really worth it. Speaking of food this week me and my companion made some fried chicken it was so good.

So earlier this week I went on my first exchanges. It was a lot of fun. They only had three bikes and since I was the smallest I had to ride on the back of one of the bikes. We had several people that looked at us kind of funny. I first went with a missionary who actually reminds me a lot of Mikey. It was really fun. He has only been in Japan for one transfer more than me so we both don't know the language that well. It was great though because we actually taught a lesson and gave them a book of mormon with our very simple japanese.

There have been so many miracles I've seen. I love mission life it is so great. This week we actually have been having a lot of success with less actives. We are also meeting with an excommunicated member. We have found out that they all still believe in everything that church teaches. They just don't know if they can do it but we know they can and we are always there encouraging them. We actually had three less actives come to church and we met some more that people haven't seen in forever.

So yesterday we had a Baptism!!! It was an amazing experience seeing her take this step in her life. This was my first baptism! YAY!!! I felt so honored to be a part of that special ordinance. Afterwards she bore her testimony and it was just so amazing. She has a real desire to learn and grow. I loved seeing her grow and progress as we taught her. It is so great being a missionary I have honestly been so blessed and I'm so grateful for all of the prayers. We also taught the lesson in priesthood meeting the other day and we talked about prayer. The power of prayer is amazing it has been so helpful to me. I know that Heavenly Father listens to our prayers and answers them. He will always be there we just have to make sure we make that time for him and always make it a special experience. Now I'm actually getting ready to go to my first zone conference. I love you all so much and pray for you everyday. Thanks for all of your support.

Love Elder Gandy

p.s. here is a picture from the baptism.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Note from Gayleen

In Joseph's last e-mail he suggested that I sign up with ldsmissionarymoms.com. Actually it was a suggestion he passed on from his companion's mother. After I signed up I was really excited to receive an e-mail from her. She sent me the following paragraph that her son wrote about working with Joseph. I thought you would all enjoy reading it. This is what Elder Everett wrote:

So Wednesday, after a long day of wondering who in the world I'm going to be with I finally learned that my next companion for the next 6 weeks, at least, is Elder Gandy (pronounced Gyandy, which in Japanese sounds very much like candy), from West Valley Utah. He is a brand new missionary, fresh out of the MTC (so fresh that he was actually in the MTC choir at the Saturday Afternoon session of General conference.... I know; I found him!) and full of what we call here, "Dendo Fire" or, a desire to work. I really don't know what it is, but in the past 5 days we've really seen at least a miracle a day! New investigators that magically speaks English so that Elder Gandy can bear his testimony to them, self-referrals that come to church asking if they can join, running into a member randomly on the street and getting invited to dinner the next day, getting in contact with a less active member for the first time in over a year, or the investigator who finally got her job to give her a break to come to church; we really have just seen a ton of miracles every day.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

May 6, 2012

Dear Family,

Hey everything is going great. Its crazy that it has only been a week or so because so much has happened. Last p-day we had an activity with the ward where we played a bunch of different games. I also had nato for the first time and it wasn't all that bad. It did have a funny aftertaste though. Speaking of food we made a chicken pot pie but we used pancake mix for the crust and it was actually really good.

So my companion asked me to give him a haircut this week and lets just say it my be the first and last time I give a haircut. I actually got it pretty even all the way around his head but there might be one small bald spot. This week I also had my first district meeting and we have to do it by phone because we are too far away from the others but it was still great.

On friday I got to go to the temple and do a couple of sessions. It was great because I had headphones for the english translation but I did understand a little bit of the japanese. While we were there we stopped by the mission home and talked with the missionaries there. Oh so by the way I'm the a.p.'s grandson. So when you're a trainer you become a father so my trainer's dad is the a.p. It is actually kind of funny how much english I'm still using. We have a couple of ward members that don't know any japanese. There is also a college close by that has a lot foreigners there.

One of the most exciting things coming up is that we have a baptism set for the 20th. Its so amazing to see people want to come closer to Christ through receiving baptism. Earlier this week we had one of the most amazing experiences. So while we were out streeting I went up to an older gentleman and asked if we could just talk to him but totally messed it up. It was alright because Elder Everett saved me. So we started talking to him and he wasn't really interested but he told us to come and have some hot chocolate with him. We went to an american style restaurant called joyfull. While there we found out that he liked to see young people working hard and trying to help others to become happy. That is also a way to receive happiness is by seeing others and helping others to just smile. He also asked me to practice teaching him a lesson in japanese but it wasn't very good. At the end of talking to him he told us that if we ever needed any help to just call him. Then as he left he paid the waitress to give us a meal. It was amazing to see a complete stranger be so generous. We hope to contact him again soon so that I can "practice" teaching him again. Missionary work is amazing. It's great to be here in Japan serving. I love you all!

Love, Elder Joseph Gandy

Elder Gandy and his companion, Elder Everett.

The church in Oita.

As far as the eye can see is only a fourth of my area, if that.

Joseph in the MTC eating a "ramen burrito."

Elder Gandy in the MTC with Elder Wiscombe and Elder Fish.