Monday, January 31, 2011


No time!  We are going to the Zoo today!!!  Woohoo!!  This has to be super fast!
We have three baptismal dates and were extending a fourth this week!  Thank you for the prayers!
Ah-ha Moment: The gift of tongues is a powerful gift.  It is a real gift.  My understanding has jumped so much in the last two and a half weeks!  I understand when it is really necessary and struggle when it's not.  :)  The gifts of the Spirit are so real!!
Cultural moment:  Children.  The children here are so undisciplined!  They are so abusive to each other and I realized why.  The parents never get mad.  They just say stop, but we all know that kids don't do that.  :)  It is very different here.  :)  I am glad I was raised in America!
Funny Moment:  We were teaching a lesson to an English class student (It was in Japanese), and we were talking about the tree of life vision.  I wasn't understanding much because of the topic, but i did understand one part very well.  Matono choro asked the man if he wanted to eat the fruit, and the investigator straight up said no!!!!!  Like immediately!  I almost started laughing but that would have made matono choro mad.  It was so funny though!  Straight up: "No thanks!"  So yeah, we are probably going to drop him; he argues and doesn't really have interest.
Spiritual Moment:  No offense but most of these are so personal I don't want to share them or get very specific.  I have had so many though!  I would say this weeks spiritual moment would be this:  I finally accepted a part of my patriarchal blessing that I had been in denial about before and I have seen so many blessings in just a week for it.  Just taking that to the Lord this week in prayer was so empowering.
Next week's P-Day will be on my saturday not Tuesday.  Sorry.  :)
Forward pressing forward!
Jenkins Choro
PS:  The Yokota branch is incredible!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Ups and Downs

Friends and Family!
What a week of ups and downs this has been!  Where do I start!?!
There is a Japanese ward, Fussa, and an American Military branch, Yokota, in this area.  They are awesome!  Amazing members in both!!  Going to church in English was bizarre.  I have forgotten already how to interact with English speakers.  I love that branch!!  The fussa ward is smaller  than the Fujisawa ward but there are still good people in that ward.
For your information:  It takes seven days to get a letter (Grandma).  I have connections on the base with the Fussa missionary couple that might get American postage rates.  :)  I will try to figure this out.
Ah-ha:  I have been so nauseous, graugy (SP?), and tired lately!  I was racking my brain this week trying to figure out why.  I was thinking and I caught myself saying, "this is how I use to feel all the time. . ."  Until I started the blood type diet!!  AH-HA!!!!  I am fine with not eating what I want on my mission; I'm okay with that.  I am a missionary.  I'm just glad I have an explanation for why I feel sick all the time.  That was my ah-ha moment this week, and it hit me like a rock.  This is how I use to feel all the time!  Maybe I should go into nutrition and medicine. . .
Funny Moment: I laugh at my companion a lot.  He is goofy.  He talks about girls and I try to ignore it but he's goofy.
Cultural Moment:  I have experienced my first Japanese funeral.  A 76 year old sister from the Fussa ward passed away on Thursday.  Saturday was the funeral and it was a cross between a Japanese and a Mormon funeral.  I wasn't allowed to smile; that was super hard!  This sister was in the first primary presidency in Japan.  It was an interesting experience.  Oh, and everyone is cremated in Japan.  Thankfully, we didn't have to go to that ceremony.  This ward really loved her; I wish I could have met her.
Spiritual moment:  Which one, which one. . .  We had a mogi, which is a role play, lesson with a member in the Fussa Ward this week.  He's American but he speaks fluent Japanese.  The lesson was in English for Elder Matono to practice.  I didn't know the member at all when we started, bacause it was my third day here.  Anyway, during the lesson I felt to just drop the role play and I testified to him about what the last general conference was about: return to the basics.  I really felt the Spirit during the lesson.  After it was over he said thank you and mention that he had just recently reactivated and that he was grateful for the things we talked about.  He is an awesome brother.  It was just one of many lessons this week.
Well, this week was busy busy!  I love this area!  The Yokota and Fussa wards are awesome!
I love you all!!!!!
Elder Jenkins

Monday, January 17, 2011


Hello friends and family!
I bet you are all wondering why I am emailing a day early!  I transferred!  I am now in Fussa and my new companions name is Elder Matono!  I have an air force base in my area but I don't know if it is the one that Jill and Brad were at.  I'll find out on Sunday when I ask around.  This has to be fast because tomorrow is super busy.
Funny Moment:  I already have the reputation of vampire because I ask people what their blood types are all the time.  Anyway, Abraham choro drew this awesome little picture in my journal of my "bat form."  It made my day.  It looks so funny.
Ah-ha Moment:  I had a chance this weekend to sit down and write all the things I've learned from last transfer.  I cried a lot because I have been so blessed!  The Lord really knows what He is doing.  I am in an area now that has an english and a Japanese branch.  My new companion is super fun already.  I came into this area and it has two baptismal dates already.  I love being a missionary.  :)   I sang in sacrament meeting yesterday (on my last Sunday in Fujisawa) and by the end literally half the ward's women were crying.  I was able to hold it until I sat down, and then I started bawling.  I am going to miss that ward!  Such wonderful people are in it!  I am going to miss the people we were working with, too!
Cultural moment: Cars.  They look so cool here!  Cool little thing:  when they stop at a light, the headlights dim.  Then when the car starts moving again, the headlights brighten.  Little innovations.  So cool.
Spiritual moment:  By my mom's recommendation, I printed out a general conference talk entitled, "But If Not. . ."  I've read it 6 times in the last six days and each time I've felt this deep burning inside me.  Go read it and you'll find my testimony.
Well, gotta go!  I love you all!  I'll have more details next week!
Forward, pressing forward,
Jenkins 長老

PS:  My companion is a nihonjin!!  Japanese only!!  AAaAAAaaaaHAHHhhha!!  :D

Monday, January 10, 2011

Friends and Family:

Hello Friends and Family,
No time this week, sorry this will be fast.
Ah-ha:  Tanner.  Tanner, I want to give you a hug so bad!  I think I got a glimpse into your mind and your world this past week.  I had this ah-ha moment were I just thought, "Tanner and I are a lot alike."  Anyway, I love you Tanner!!
Funny Moment:  We have sports night every friday where we play ping pong (wipe that smile off your face Dallin) and basketball.  We have investigators go, so we go.  Anyway, there is this old lady that comes to English class that is a legend at ping pong among the missionaries.  (She isn't a member.)  And she was crazy good!  She looked so graceful when she played, especially because her opponent jumped like a rabbit EVERYTIME he hit the ball (and he yelped).  So I played her next. . . AND I BEAT HER!!  IN YOUR FACE DALLIN!!!!!!  :P   . . .     But I lost when we played the next four games and everyone else there kept beating me too.  (STOP LAUGHING, DALLIN!!)  I beat her once though!  Yay me!
Cultural Event:  Mochi.  Mochi is smashed rice that you can do whatever you want with.  You can put it in sweet bean paste (my favorite), roll it in some brown powder, wrap it around ice cream, eat it plain, wrap it in nori (seaweed), or whatever.  So yesterday we had a mochitsuki, which is a rice smashing party!  I took a couple hits and I only missed twice (stop laughing, Dallin!)  I eat sooooo much mochi!  :D  So good!  Mika came too!  We talked for a bit.  She still has no interest in doing any real investigating.  :(   She had fun at the party though!
Spiritual Moment:  I have had so many little crying moments that nobody else knows about, because I have felt the Spirit so strong (whether from study, pondering, or feeling it from members).  It happened again yesterday.  At the mochitsuki, I watched this four year old girl guide a girl Kirsi's age around a room of church pictures.  I started bawling to myself, because it was so awesome to see this little girl testify to this other girl in Japanese (I understood what she said too!) about the importance of the Savior as she showed her pictures of Him.
Well, I have to go!  Know that I am so okay and that I LOVE JAPAN!!!!  This week was fun!  We met a Japanese WWII veteran (its in the journal, Mom, don't worry), got attacked by children at a park, drank the South American version of weed (just kidding, it's called matte and it's gross), and I got my $100 electronic dictionary and bike light (with fresh batteries I had just put in) stolen!!  Yay!  Busy busy!  I love you all!  Have a wonderful week!
Forward, Pressing forward,
Jenkins 長老

Monday, January 3, 2011


Hello Friends and Family!!
Well, this week we had interviews with president, and yes, I cried through half the interview.  I expressed all my concerns and worries. I asked what one hour meals meant, 10:30 bedtime meant, what if we walk out the door at 12:02 instead of 12:00 because our prayer went too long, can the Lord still bless me if my long prayers in the morning cut into exercise time?  First he stared at me like I was this poor deranged crazy person and then in the most loving way he said, "You're going to go crazy if you keep thinking like that."  He then prescribed me some minor sedatives to take every morning to keep my cortisol levels down during the day...  Okay, just kidding, he didn't prescribe sedatives, but he did tell me to take a giant horse pill of "CHILL THE HECK DOWN!"  I felt soooooo much better after the interview.  I felt this weight lift off my shoulders.  I could have flown away if I started flapping my arms (I wish I would have tried).  I bet Peter Pan's thoughts weren't as free and happy as mine were after that interview!  So yeah, it was awesome.  :D
Cultural Experience:  New Years is the Holiday!  Woo!  New Year's Eve isn't as big; no one really stays up that I noticed.  Sunrise on New Year's Day is where the party's at!  Japan is one of the first countries in the world to see the new year, so watching the sunrise on new years day is a tradition.  So we woke up at 5:00 (:P) on New Year's Day and rode the train down to the island at the bottom of my area.  (Dad, the trains were packed just as much as they were when we were in DC, however the stations weren't as packed).  There were so many people on that tiny little island.  So we stood on the pier at the southeast tip of the island and watched the sunrise.  IT WAS SOOOOO BEAUTIFUL!!  Yes, I will send pictures.  ;)  That was definitely a mission memory.
Funny Moment:  Last night we had a member dinner, and there was this hilarious old Japanese (duh) lady there.  She spoke broken English with a hard Japanese accent.  She was hilarious!  She kept saying, "I'm... funny." And then she would bust out laughing.  Anyway, she made Jello (o dear) and as she was dishing it up she said, "Do you want Zellie?"  We laughed for four minutes straight, because in the broken English with the Japanese accent, it was perfect. She was so funny!
Ah-ha Moment:  I had one and then I forgot it, so next week's ah-ha moment will be remembering this week's.  :)
Spiritual Moment:  I am debating which one to tell you.  There were several this week.  I would say the best one was my interview with president.  I wanted to be sure nothing would stand in the way of me being a worthy and ready servant.  I expressed all my concerns.  He had me read a couple scriptures, and that was that.  Poof, worries gone.  It was such a spiritual revival!  I need to calm down!  It was so nice to be told by my priesthood leader to calm down and keep working.  I was sooo spiritually fired up by the time I walked out the door.  I have seen things click this week that wouldn't click before because I was too stressed.  I know the Atonement has rejuvinating power.  I am so going to servive this mission thing (que laughter from all the return missionaries).  Thank you for the prayers; I feel them.
Well, I had better go.  So much to do so little time!  I love you all!!!!  Thank you thank you thank you for the support and prayers!
よい年を! Yoi toshi o!  Have a good year!!
Jenkins 長老 (choro)
Kameta family - "I am holding the walnut bread that sister Kameta gave specifically to me because I freaked out when I tried it at dinner.  It was sooooo good (and walnuts are highly beneficial! :)  Asao (the one right next to me) is awesome.  He just got the Melchizedek Priesthood and he's prepping for a mission.  He's going to BYU in April.  We'd totally be friends if I could speak Japanese.  This family is awesome."

Wada family - "This awesome couple is a missionary's dream joint-member-lesson couple.  They are awesome!  We joke that Wada shimai (sister) is spiritual beast because she is one!  Those are their grandkids in the back.  They didn't really say much; they were playing Pokemon cards.  Anyway, Wada family, awesome couple."