Monday, October 22, 2012

The Letter

 It was a glorious Thursday evening.  
We had just had a great lesson with an investigator family, and 
they had agreed to work toward being baptized on December.  
Elder Fry and I walked out and made our way back to the church from their house to play ping pong with a less-active member.  
Upon arriving at the church, the Inage Elders handed me a brown envelope, and said, "It's for you."  I looked at it for a second, and 
then realization dawned upon me like a rhino, and I knew:  
I had received my "DEATH LETTER". 
It's an infamous envelope, which includes a missionary's return dates, 
a letter asking you to continue strong to the end and 
be a good example for the younger missionaries, and 
a sort of poem that talks about what's most important in a mission. 
 I tentatively read the white paper to see the following in highlighted yellow:  May or June, 2013

I can't believe I got my letter!!!
I'd only heard about it from other "old" missionaries, but 
it never actually occurred to me that I'd be getting mine, and so soon!  
And so nonchalantly from the Inage Elders, as if they were passing me a muffin at dinner!  I was definitely shocked, but I'm over it, and have accepted 
the fact that my mission will end, sometime next year, 
on either May or June.  I'm not decided, but I've got one I'm leaning toward.  

As for other things that happened, we had the ward halloween party!  We got to run a game (we made a cool mini-golf course, complete with red lighting and miniature, plastic golf clubs purchased at a dollar store) and the kids at the party loved it.  Chiba ward and Inage ward (we meet in the same building) had the party combined, which also made it fun.  Oh, and I won the musical chairs game!  I felt bad, because I won against a sister in the ward who was dressed up as Emma Smith, but it was still fun. 

We were unable to meet our Nepalese family because they're preparing for a festival that they have a booth at.  I mentioned the great news with our other family-- the mom and one of the kids (the other's 4 years old, so he's not really an investigator) have been investigating the church for several years, but have not been baptized yet.  We talked to them about working toward a date, and being baptized on that date if they felt ready to do so.  They agreed to December, which is rather distant (we usually don't have them be so far out), but they are willing to work toward it.  We'll keep working with them and help them increase their faith, so they can bring to pass the miracle it will take to allow them to be baptized then.
Everything's good in Chiba!  I love my mission.
Until next week!

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