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.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Dear Family

Thanks for all of the news. It sounds like everything is going really well. To start off last week for p-day I went to the park and museum for where the atomic bomb was dropped. I thought that you would really like me to go to that. It is actually on the edge of my area and another area. It was really interesting. The park there is really nice and has a lot of monuments. The museum was a real eye opener. I was amazed at everything that happened. It really destroyed so much and it is kind of interesting to think that my area used to be a bunch of rubble. After the bombing there were only a few buildings left standing. Well that is a little bit of history about my area I guess.

This week has been really good. We have actually been working with members a lot this week. I have been practicing teaching them the missionary lessons. It has really helped my Japanese improve and we are developing good friendships with the members. Other than that we had our ward Halloween party a couple of days ago and that was really fun. There were some great costumes. One of the best though was this guy dressed like Indiana Jones and he actually looks very similar but Japanese. It was great fun with some great activities. I even got a little bit of candy.

The work has been going well but there is always more that I can improve on. I'm thankful for all the hope that this gospel has given me. I have learned a lot about how we should help Heavenly Father's children and the blessings that come from it. I'm looking forward to this next week and hope that everything keeps going well. I love you all very much.

Love Elder Gandy

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Note: By way of explanation for the beginning of Joseph's e-mail, I had a chance to visit New Orleans and wrote to him about going on a swamp tour. I also asked him some questions relating to the experiences I've had going out with the sister missionaries to visit and teach people in my ward. GG

Dear Family,

The swamp tour sounded like quite the experience. I'm glad that you enjoyed it all. To answer your question I'm going to give my perspective of what I've learned and what we are trying to do. When visiting less actives it is very easy to just ask them questions but becoming their friend is very important. The next thing is to help them remember what our goal in life is. For me I want to help them by showing them the path to Heavenly Father again. The plan of salvation is a great way to do that. That is my personal perspective because it is something I know that I can testify about and if we do this with love it will help them out so much more. We will also be blessed and learn more about ourselves as we do this. I hope that helped in some way or another.

So this last week was transfers and I got transferred. You will probably be happy to hear that I am now in Hiroshima (the cold part of the mission just in time for winter). I actually work in the ward that goes to the Hiroshima stake center. It seems like a great area and I'm super excited to work here. I also had quite the experience traveling to my new area. I left my previous area and got on a train and then I was supposed to take a bus. I arrived at my stop in a very country-side looking town and I soon found out that there was no bus. So after calling and talking to the assistants we got everything figured out and I arrived safely and actually earlier than expected. But I did have to communicate with Japanese people all by myself so I knew where I needed to go. At least now I know I have survival Japanese. Which is a very good thing because my new companion is Japanese. His name is Elder Ichikawa and he is a great missionary.

These last few days have been amazing. My new district is all Japanese except for me and one other foreigner. So I'm really looking forward to this transfer and speaking Japanese as much as possible. So far communication has been going really well. We also got to watch general conference the other day. It was an amazing conference and I can't wait until we get the magazine so I can read the talks again. I enjoyed listening to all of the talks. Conference really does mean so much more to me now. It helps me know what I can be doing better. This conference I also made sure that I wrote down questions and sure enough they were all answered. In fact it seemed like every talk was directed towards me and things that I could be doing better in my missionary work. Hopefully I will be able to apply all of the things I learned. I love you all so very much.

Love Elder Gandy

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Dear Family,

That is some amazing news. Its super exciting that now people can go on missions sooner. I got to watch just that little section online and was completely blown away when I heard. My first thought was Joshua just turned 18. That is pretty cool(Happy Birthday by the way). Then I was like why didn't they do this a year ago but soon realized that was alright because I'm glad I left when I did. There were people that I needed to meet and I came just when I needed to. I have had some amazing experiences since then. That is so awesome though because missionary work is the best. It has helped me grow so much. I enjoy serving the Lord by helping my fellow brothers and sisters especially here in Japan.

This last week has gone by really fast. We have two amazing investigators right now. It has been a great experience teaching them. Yesterday one them told us that she knows it is true but wants to learn just a little bit more before getting baptized. The work is really moving along. This past week we also got asked by the Bishop if we would come over to his house for dinner and teach his son who is getting baptized this week. It was a lot of fun we came up with different activities to do to help him understand the spirit. Then another thing we did was visit this older couple who it is hard for them to get around. It was a really nice visit they pulled out their photo albums and we looked at the old pictures they had of everyone in the ward. It was a lot of fun and great to see them smiling and having a good time. I love the ward here they are all so amazing. I have learned so much and have seen miracles its great the work that the Lord has in store for all of us. I love you all so very much.

Love Elder Gandy

P.S. They are making a little change so at the end of every transfer we will be e-mailing on tuesday. But that won't be for another six weeks.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Dear Family,

We didn't have anytime to e-mail yesterday because we spent our p-day in Beppu and worked over there for the day. Sorry this e-mail might be a little short. So next week is general conference for all of you but I have to wait one more week. The funny thing is it will happen in the middle of the transfers so the missionaries going home will miss it until they can watch it online and the missionaries coming from the MTC will see it twice. So that is how it will work out. Last week was another good week. We have been working a lot with the members here. It has been great having their support and seeing how excited they get when we give them cookies. This last week we also did a lot of biking it makes me wonder how many miles we bike on average during the week. Anyways we have almost finished the lessons with one of our investigators and she is progressing very well. We have been teaching her the commandments and we taught the word of wisdom. Apparently after that lesson with her she told her parents that she wasn't going to drink tea or alcohol anymore. She has been very willing to keep all of the commitments we extend. It is awesome seeing her progress and come closer to Christ. I have been enjoying the life as a missionary. It is all great helping people and studying the gospel. I've learned so much already and hope that I will be able to apply it all to the work that we're doing. I love you all very much and pray for you everyday. Thanks for all of your love and support.

Love Elder Gandy

P.S. Mom I thought you would like to know but yesterday I also ran into this girl from Estonia. She had met the missionaries before and might start meeting with them. But she lives in a different area than us. I just thought it was kind of cool.