Alex Fuller's Mission to Japan

Alex at MTC From June 2006 to June 2008, Alex is serving
a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter-day Saints in the Japan Tokyo
South and Japan Nagoya Missions.
(click pic to enlarge)

Sunday, July 01, 2007

First Impressions

Suwa place is an absolutely Beautiful location. It is a rather large city in a huge valley with a big lake in the middle. All around are tall, green mountains and through the opening in the valley one can see Mt. Fuji on a clear day. It is probably one of the prettiest places I have been.

For those wanting to play along with Google Earth, our church coordinates are:

N 36 Degrees 00.344
E 138 Degrees 08.347

I live just down the road in the apartment right by the big curb - maybe 100 meters away.

The weather has been either hot or rain - but it has been fun. We have been able to find three people so far that show interest in our message - one Japanese, one Brazilian, and one Phillipino.  The Phillipino lady - Roxanne - seems very promising. Her Aunt and Uncle are a nice Mormon family in the Phillipines and she said that she wants to be Mormon like them. Unfortunately her Japanese husband shows no interest in religion, but says it is perfetly fine for her to join. Roxanne also has a good Bolivian friend who is a member here. Quite the diversity. Mostly, I am so glad I am a native English Speaker. So many people want to learn English in order to be an English teacher or get a good job. What a blessing.

The branch here consists of about thirty active members. They are all amazing - especially the Branch President. His sons take notes of the lessons - I don`t know if I was ever that attentive in church at twelve years old.

Elder Brough is a great companion. He has been here in Japan for three months and is doing very well. It`s amazing to see where he is right now - six months as a missionary, and to see where I am at one year. Somehow through the grace of God, I`ve been able to learn Japanese. I have a strong testimony of the Gift of Tongues - it is a real gift of the Spirit which missionaries around the world are blessed with. Japanese is now just a really crazy game for me now - not hard, just fun. Okay, well, still hard - but in a "playing monopoly with your sister and brothers who are really good at monopoly" kind of hard.

Our new misison president - President Traveller, got into Nagoya on June 30th. I haven`t heard anything about him yet, but I`ll get to meet him next monday for an interview. It`s quite an amazing organization in which leadership can change so easily.

Developing the faith to find people who are ready to recieve the gospel is one of the hardest yet most important things for a missionary. I still don`t have enough faith, but it seems that somehow when we leave our apartment with a great deal of expectations - things seem to happen. We meet people who want to talk. We meet people who speak really, really rudely. We meet people who have been to Christian churchs fifty years ago and still have questions. We meet people who have seen "The Ten Commandments" with charleton heston and LOVE that movie. I tell them my mom loves that movie too - and then we talk about how Moses was a prophet. And we meet a whole lot of very busy people.

Somehow - things work out. In the end, as Alexander Pope says, "Whatever is, is right." And it is - because God is always there leading, guiding, and walking beside us. I have felt Him near. His Spirit is preparing people, even here in Suwa, Japan. Perhaps especially here.

I am so happy and enjoying being a missionary.

May the Lord bless and keep.


Elder Alexander Todd Fuller
Japan Nagoya Mission
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints


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