Thursday, December 29, 2016

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! Christmas was yesterday for me and it was amazing! However, since it is Christmas I got to skype my family! We also have lots of fun stuff planned to do so this email is going to be rather short (sorry I always say that haha). 

I love this Christmas season! It is seriously the best time of the year. I'll explain some things we got to do this week. We got to go volunteer at a home for disabled people and do service there and it was a huge humbling experience. They don't have much of anything and don't see visitors very often, even from family, and they were all so excited to see us be there. I have a couple pictures so I'll be sure to send those. I talked with this really cute old lady who wanted a beanie and a scarf for Christmas. She hadn't seen any of her family in over 30 years, it was really sad. But even with that she was the happiest little old lady I had ever met! 

This past week fly by just like every other. Except it was filled with lots more meal appointments and parties. The members in the American and Japanese wards have been super generous to us this Christmas and have given us enough food to probably last a couple months. Between the four of us we have like 9 jars of peanut butter. On Christmas morning I had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a root beer, it was the best thing ever. 

Since I don't have time I will finish it up with our investigator Yaka. We finished teaching him all the lessons and he is doing way good! He has his baptismal interview and passed it with no problems, he is really looking forward to being baptized! His date was for the 31st but since it is the New Years lots of people will be out of town and not be able to come to it. So we pushed it back to the 7th so more people could come :) he was okay with pushing it back and now we are just setting up the details for his baptism! We are way pumped for him! 

I hope everyone is having a great Christmas! Christmas is such a great time to remember the birth of our Savior and how real our Father in Heavens love is for all of us. I love you all! Have a great New Years, see ya then! 


Elder Sherrill 

Stop Slouching

Hello Friends and Family!

I am alive and well! I survived last week, thankfully I got over my
sickness and was able to up to trainers training to get my new
missionary. His name is Elder Lyutsov and he is awesome! He is from
Bulgaria and is probably the most interesting person I have ever met.
His English is completely fluent and his Japanese is already better
than mine! One of his hobbies is to study languages and so far he
knows about 8! Also he is a recent convert as well. He was baptized
last year in April! So we have that in common which is kind of cool.
He is a very blunt person and so the very first time I met him the
first thing he said to me was "you're slouching, pick your head up". I
was like, "what"? Haha. Apparently Bulgarian people are very blunt and
speak their mind and from being with him for a couple days now I can
definitely say that is true haha, however! These past few days I have
had the best posture I have ever had so thanks to him I might come
back from my mission with good posture and better manners haha. But I
honestly love him and I'm so excited to be training him. He has
already taught me a lot these first couple days and I'm excited to
learn more from him!

So onto this week. I ran out of time so I don't have any time to
report on what's going on, sorry! Our investigator yaka is going to be
baptized on December 31st! We taught him all the commandments and he
has no problems so now we are just finishing up the lessons and
preparing for his baptism! I'm so stoked!

I can't believe it will be Christmas next week either! We have tons of
meals set up with members and lots of parties planned so this next
week should be a blast. I'll be sure to take lots of pictures for you
all, sorry this is so short again! Maybe I'll get better at sending
good emails someday ;) but until then, I love you all! Thank you for
all your prayers and support! I am so grateful for them, I hope
everyone has a wonderful Christmas with their families. Remember the
reason for the season and keep the focus on Jesus Christ and helping
others! :)


Elder Sherrill

I'm Training!

Hello all!

So I've got some exciting news, this week was of course transfer week
and I'm staying as expected but, I'm going to be training! I'll be
getting a new missionary fresh from the MTC and I couldn't be more
stoked! Obviously I am a little nervous but I really am excited to get
the opportunity to train. Along with training this next transfer I
will still be a Zone Leader so that just means my life just got a
little busier! I didn't think that was possible haha, but regardless I
am way excited!

This past week was really fun and we had lots of things we did but I
unfortunately got pretty sick this morning so I'm going to go back to
the apartment and rest, therefore this email will be really short.
Since it is so short I will just share one scripture I really liked as
I was reading the New Testament this week. It is Mark 11:24 and it
goes, "Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye
pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them." I really
do believe that Heavenly Father works a lot through our own righteous
desires. If we desire something, pray for that help, and trust that He
will give it to us according to our faith in Him than really anything
is possible.

This next transfer I'm going to have a blast as I go out with my new
missionary. New missionaries are always known for having super strong
faith so I know we will see some miracles this next transfer. I love
you all, I'm sorry this email is so short. Take care!


Elder Sherrill

Friday, December 9, 2016

Soccer, Junkai's, and Miracles!

What a week! Before I begin I just have to say something. I played soccer this past week. On a full sized field. With real goals. With actually good soccer players. And it was for an hour straight! It was so natsukashi I almost cried. I loved every minute of it!! It has been a really long time since I've played soccer like that and it just revitalized my love for the game. So how it works is every Saturday morning some people meet together and play soccer on the Kadena Air Force base. They are all Americans and in the military and about 20 of the guys are non members! We met a few cool guys and we're going to go next week to see if we can't build some friendships and invite them to some of our future activities. 

So there was a lot that happened this week so I'm going to have to run through it all pretty quick. To begin the week, we went out to a return appointment with this phillipino lady and she became a new investigator! Right now she said she's looking for a church and searching for God because the church she was raised in doesn't feel right to her. We taught the restoration and she loved it, we have plans to go back this next week so I'll keep you all updated! 

That same day on the way home we didn't have time to have lunch so we decided to eat at McDonald's. While we were eating there I noticed an old man across the restaurant eating by himself. He looked really lonely and I felt a prompting I should go talk to him, so that's what I did haha. As I approached him and asked to sit by him he kind of lit up and offered me a chair beside him. I talked with him for a few minutes and noticed he had a few interesting things on the table with him. They look like some random carnival props. When I asked for his name he said, "magician". I thought maybe I heard it wrong so I asked him to write it down and sure enough he writes down the word "magician". Before I could connect the dots he points at his magician props beside him and says to me, "I'm a magician". So I of course asked if I could see some of his tricks haha. He was more than happy to show me a few of them. Afterwards I invited him to church on Christmas and told him to call us if he ever needed help with anything. It really helped me realize that as a missionary you can share the love of the gospel in other ways than just knocking on doors! 

So this past week we also made a new investigator. His name is Yaka. The sisters found him a couple weeks ago and apparently he took the lessons like 30 years ago and got close to baptism but had a problem with smoking. But! He actually quit smoking all by himself a few years back! So we jointed a lesson with the sisters and they passed us to him and we set a baptismal date for December 17th.He is way cool! We have to really push this next week to get him all set for baptism but we think he can make it. He came to church these past 2 weeks and really enjoyed it so things are going good with him! We've got a couple other people we are working with too so hopefully we can set a couple more baptismal dates here soon. 

I love being in Okinawa! Having tons of American members and Japanese members is the best! It honestly feels like I am back in America though. When we go on base there is a bunch of Americans, normal American grocery stores, restaraunt like chili's, Taco Bell, subway, etc. It feels really weird sometimes! We definitely get spoiled here. 

One of the benefits of being a Zone Leader is you get to talk with all the missionaries in your zone and you are a lot more up to date and know about all the miracles going on with other missionaries. I have seen so many miracles since I have been here in Okinawa and I know that the Lord has a hand in His own work. This Christmas season is such a special time of year and I'm so excited to be spending it with the wonderful saints in Japan! I also have a talk I'm giving on Christmas Day so I'm excited for that as well. Life is going good here and I couldn't ask for a better area, members, or companion. I hope everyone is as excited as I am for the upcoming Christmas! It will be awesome! I love you all and hope you have a great week! See ya! 


Elder Sherrill 

Run Oki

Hey everyone! I know I just emailed a couple days ago so I will make this a short one. Plus there were a couple individual emails I haven't responded to yet.. (sorry! I will today). These past few days have been way good and everything is continuing to move forward. I still can't believe November is almost over though, it feels like it just started a couple days. One thing that I've definitely noticed is the more busy you are the faster the time goes by. Which makes me a little scared because this next month looks like it is going to be really busy, so in other words it will probably be 2017 before I know it.

Today since it's my first real pday in Okinawa we have a couple plans to go buy some stuff from this store called "Run Oki". Pretty much every single missionary that serves on Okinawa goes and buys a Run Oki shirt.. so looks like I've got to join the crowd! Haha. If I end up buying one I'll send you all some pictures. Other than that we don't have many plans for today. I wanted to go to the beach but it's raining so that won't really work out. I'm going to try and go next week so I can get some pictures for you all! Okinawa is way beautiful but I haven't really had time to stop and take pictures so I'll repent and send some next week if I can. 

This past Saturday I got to participate in a really cool experience. After a person is taught all the lessons and getting prepared for baptism they have a baptism interview. I was able to conduct my first baptismal interview with this lady named Kochi who lives up in Nago (northern area of Okinawa Island). It was such a great spiritual experience and she was seriously one of the most prepared people I have ever met. I was a little nervous to do so because you pretty much ultimately decide if this person is ready to be baptized or not, and if they aren't it would be very difficult to not pass them. Thankfully she was super prepared and had a strong testimony so it was no problem and she passed with flying colors. 

Well, I've got to run again! Thank you everyone for your prayers and support. I'll try to fill you all in on my area more next week. I love Okinawa though! It's been a blast and I'm really excited for this holiday season! We have tons of plans and parties coming up, it will be awesome. I love you guys! See ya next week! 

Love, Elder Sherrill 

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Where to Begin?

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Goodbye Nakatsu, Hello Okinawa!

Yes, you read the title right, I'm transferring! And I'm going to the city of Okinawa in Okinawa! The heart of the island! I will become a new Zone Leader and my new companion will also be a Zone Leader. His name is Elder Muhlestein. I'm way pumped! But also terrified haha. He was actually my Zone Leader in Hiroshima so I'm expecting to learn a lot from him. It will be sad to be leaving Nakatsu but I'm really excited to go down to the island and see success there! As a Zone Leader my companion and I will oversee the work of about 24 missionaries on the island. It will quite the experience! 

Since I am transferring though this will most likely be a very short email. I have lots of packing, writing meishis, and saying goodbye to do. This past week was way awesome though! Our biggest miracle would have to be what occurred on Sunday. I have been meeting with a less active woman named Tanaka every 2 weeks since I got to Nakatsu. She was baptized 30 some odd years ago and hasn't been to church in over 8 years. Through meeting with her and teaching her by the spirit she seemed to be slowly progressing to coming back into activity. This past Sunday we had a special conference and it was likely my last week so I invited her one last time. Honestly I didn't think she would come since we had invited her so many other times but to my surprise she pulls up in a taxi right after church started! I was so happy! The messages shared in church I could see really touched and I hoped that Sunday was the beginning of her path to coming back into the church. Never give up on less actives! They need your love just as much as new converts do, through meeting with her I have realized how important working with less active members is. 

Well that's about all I have time for, I will for sure update you all next week on how Okinawa is and how my transfer went. I'm so stoked for this next transfer and for all the learning opportunities I will have. I am definitely being humbled and will see a lot of humbling in this next transfer as I prepare to rely on the Lord more fully and completely. This Gospel is true and perfect, I know it! I love you all, see ya next week! 

Love, Elder Sherrill 

Monday, November 7, 2016


Headed to Fukuoka! 

Hello again everyone! Time goes by way to fast, I can't believe I'm already emailing again and next week is transfers already! Each transfer goes by faster and faster. This week was pretty good but before I get into that today for P-Day we are headed to Fukuoka to hang out with some other missionaries. We are going to go to the park, play some sports, eat some delicious food, and hang out in the city! I'm pretty excited for it all and the best part is, getting to wear normal clothes. Wearing a suit and tie everyday is nice but getting to throw a t-shirt and jeans on is way hisashiburi! Since we are going there though I don't have much time so this will be fairly short.

So this last week was fun but Halloween was pretty lame to be honest haha. We couldn't find a costume and we didn't have a branch party so we didn't do anything for it other than normal missionary proselyting at night. We did however go get donuts so that was fun. Starting off the week we went to Fukuoka for District Meeting and then after that took a stop at the Mission home and chatted with the Mission President and Mission mom. It was nice to see them and I'm glad were so close to them, Sister Egan gave my companion and I lots of American candy so that was a plus! 

The Fukuoka Zone leaders came down to Nakatsu and we went on Junkais (switch companions for a day) and it was way fun! We actually saw a lot of success together and on top of that Elder Wintercorn and I had a pretty solid week and made 7 return appointments. It's not a whole lot but each of them were all pretty solid instead of being kind of sketchy like they sometimes are. We taught Koshimichi (new investigator) and she is progressing slowly but still progressing. She says she doesn't want to join the church, but she is okay with listening.  We'll see about that haha, that's what they all say ;). For now though she's taking things slow and reading the Book of Mormon so it's going good. This following week we have quite a few teaching appointments lined up so I'm excited to see where it goes! 

Lastly, my companion and I have been running in the mornings. He is a former cross country runner so he runs like horse but it's been way fun to get some solid exercise in the morning. Just on Saturday we ran 3 miles together at an average of a 7:34 pace. That's not even fast and I was dead at the end of it haha. But other than that I'm just way excited to keep working with him! Elder Wintercorn is a stud missionary and is helping me out a lot. We will see what happens next week with transfers! 

That's about it for this week, sorry it's so short! I hope everyone is having a good time and enjoying the cold weather, I sure am! I'm excited for the all the Holidays coming up, especially Christmas. We just learned we will be proselyting all day long Christmas day and skyping the day after Christmas. That will be pretty interesting but I'm sure we'll see some miracles it being Christmas and all. I love you guys! Have a wonderful week! 


Elder Sherrill 

PS- Next week is transfer week so I will be emailing a day later than usual. Then the following week after that is Thanksgiving week and our pday has been changed to thanksgiving day. 

ハッピーハローウィン 🎃

Happy Halloween everyone! This week flew by! There was a lot that happened and at the same time not... Each week I feel like it is just packed with stuff and then I get to the end and I look back and I think to myself, "what even happened this week"? Out of all the things I feel like have improved on my mission so far, my memory has definitely not been one of them haha. 

But onto this past week, to start it off we had dinner with that new friend of ours Haruki (he is the guy that cooked for the emperor of Japan). We went to his house and he cooked ham for us. It was literally the best ham I have ever eaten in my life. It was better than any American ham I had ever had. He told us it was actually ham from America so that was funny, but the way he cooked it was absolutely amazing. Him and his friend asked tons of questions about our missionary purpose and missions in general so we got to talk about that and it was a lot of fun. 

Our investigator Yamasaki is kind of wishy washy right now which is really sad, we tried to visit her but she hasn't been home so we left a Halloween treat/message and hope we can meet sometime this week with her. We have found a new investigator though. Her name is Koshimichi and she is really nice, we will see how things pan out with her. Other than her though we actually set a really strong return appointment with a young mom for tonight and I'm excited to see where that goes. She had some really cute and funny kids that we played with outside of their house. 

Near the end of the week we had specialized training with our Mission President, his wife, and the assistants to the president. It was a wonderful training and I actually feel like I took quite a bit from it. One thing I learned from Kaicho was to budget my money more. I thought I was pretty decent at this before the mission but as some of you may know.. I like to spend money haha. So learning more about living within your means and how to have a solid budget plan helped and I'm excited to follow the new budget I made for next month! I'll let you all know if I survive it. From Sister Egan though we learned a lot about being happy and choosing joy in the journey, rather than enduring it. She said so many good things I felt like I personally needed to hear so I was very grateful for that training. She also talked about gratitude and how that effects our own  personal happiness. During the week as I reflected on the training I had a thought come to mind and it was, "the more I do for others, the more I appreciate what has already been done for me". Sister Egan is such a Christlike individual and I feel like I learn so much about charity and service every time she presents us with trainings. 

To finish up the week I'll share a quick funny experience. We were home teaching at Tanaka Shimai's home and right before I started the message I noticed a large black thing moving on the wall adjacent from me. I stopped in the middle of my sentence and with a look of horror on my face pointed to the large spider on the wall. It was a huntsman spider. They are all over Japan and they are HUGE! This one was a litter bigger than my palm, so about the size of my hand. After I pointed it out they just casually carry on the conversation and say it is just a baby one! I then ask if they are going to kill it before we share the message and they say no!!! I was like, "are you crazy?" They said they were just going to leave it since it was harmless. My companion and I looked at each other with confusion and continued on sharing message only after we folded our legs in our chair so they were off the ground. About the middle of the message the spider kept crawling on the wall and then disappeared behind a dresser. Needless to say, my companion and I wrapped up the message and got out of there with no time to waste. 

Unfortunately we didn't have a Halloween party in Nakatsu because our branch is so small and old.. haha so elder Wintercorn and I are just going to party it up ourselves today since it's p-day! We don't have much plans but we may go buy some mustaches and wear them while we dendo tonight.. we will have to see haha. I love you guys! Have a great and happy Halloween! Enjoy the candy! 


Elder Sherrill 

"Can I tell my friends about baptism?"

Helllllllllo everybody! This week was really good! It went by pretty fast and we had tons of dendo and saw a couple small miracles that my companion and I were way grateful for. But honestly not all that much happened this week, it seemed like a pretty normal week. 

Starting off we have our investigator Yamasaki (山崎) who this week didn't progress as much as we would have liked. We called her and she didn't answer, then we tried to visit and she wasn't there.. so we called again a day or so later and no answer again. Usually she calls us back so I was started to get worried but when we visited her once more at the end of the week my fears were suppressed as we found out that she has been busy with work and her mom is currently in town. She has read where we invited her to read in the Book of Mormon and is still ready and praying! We have a lesson with her tomorrow and I'm hoping we can start moving a little faster soon.

That's pretty much it unfortunately with investigators.. we made quite a few return appointments this week so I'm hoping in my email next week I can report positively about some of those and tell you guys about some new investigators we found. We had a couple cool and funny experiences this week during dendo as well. The first night we got the cops called on us again as we were o knocking on doors. The cops came realized it was just "those American missionaries" again and took down our info and left, they were pretty polite about the whole thing. Then on another occasion we knock on this one door and this old woman (later we find out she is 82) opens it up and screams when she sees us. We at first thought she was startled by us, but rather she was screaming out of excitement to see us missionaries again. Apparently missionaries knocked on her door a couple years ago and she just loved them so much that when we showed up to her door she bursts with excitement and talked to us for a solid 20 minutes. Unfortunately she has no interest, she just likes the missionaries, so we left her with something to read. 

Then our most recent cool little dendo miracle was a young kid we street contacted right outside our apartment on the way home. He was 15 and headed home from basketball practice. We BRT'ed a little with him (got to know him/small talk) and I asked him what he wanted to do when he was older, or if he had any dream job. He replies yes but that it was a secret. I then asked him if through baptism (we were talking about baptism at the time) and Jesus Christ he could receive help in fulfilling his dreams what he would think. He responded that it would be awesome and he would love it. Before I could try and set up and appointment he said to me, "can I tell my friends about baptism"? I practically fainted from hearing such words. I said of course! Tell everyone you know! Haha and then gave him a Gospel of Jesus Christ pamphlet that discusses more about baptism. As he rode off on his back he turned to us and said one more time, "I'm going to tell my friends about this!" And then rode off. It was a way cool miracle in my eyes. 

Well that's about it for this week. The work is moving along here in Nakatsu! It is moving slow but I can tell it is moving. I love being a missionary and I'm thankful for this chance to serve and be apart of this great cause. I love you all and wish you a wonderful week! 


Elder Sherrill 

"I've cooked for the emperor of Japan... twice."

What's up family and friends?! How's it going?? I'm doing great here in Nakatsu and loving life! This past week was full of miracles and some way cool experiences! But since I don't have so much time to email I'm going to make this pretty short. 

First off our investigator Yamasaki! Way cool things are happening with her. We invited her to baptism again, she expressed some of her concerns and then said that if she really did receive and answer she would get baptized. We invited her to read a section in the Book of Mormon and pray to know if baptism was right for her. I called her the next big to follow up with the commitment we gave and she said she received an answer to her prayer. She said after she prayed she heard a voice tell her "you will know soon", how cool is that?! She said she wants to keep studying and learn more about Jesus Christ. Just yesterday we met with her and I was "quizzing her knowledge/testimony" of the things we have taught her and she literally already sounds like a member when I talk with her. She is so cool and I have no doubt she will be baptized at some point, whether I'm here for that I'm not sure but I know it'll happen. 

We also had zone training meeting this past week and learned a lot from our leaders. I personally learned a lot about humility as well, something I have come to learn I need quite a bit of work on haha. During dendo this week it was Elder Wintercorn and I's first full week together and it was so fun! We had lots of dendo time and met so many nice people that we gave Book of Mormons too as well as set up appointments to come back and teach, the miracles are starting to pick up here in Nakatsu! 

Last night we met a guy, he was our last door we knocked on and it actually made us a little late getting home. But anyways we met him, his name is Haruki and he invited us into his apartment. He had a way cool apartment and to be honest looked like some really rich guy with probably some cool connections, and sure enough he was! Turns out he is some super awesome chef that has cooked for the emperor of Japan, twice! He also had a few soccer balls signed by the whole Japan National Soccer team as well as some club teams. He said he wasn't to interested in our message but thought we were cool and wants to hang out again! He said his friend is coming from Kyoto who apparently is the 2nd best chef in Kyoto and he wants to get together and hang out and and make some food for us! So we of course traded numbers with him and set up a time to meet with him next week when his friend from Kyoto is in town. Way nice guy that I hope our new found friendship will grow into something that we can begin teaching or he will be open to other missionaries down the road. 

Well, I had tons of other little cool miracles happen all week and we were super busy but I don't have to much time left. I am loving this work and have been having such a good time here in Nakatsu. I'm so pumped for the little miracles we are seeing and the big ones I know we will see soon. This work is true and Jesus Christ truly is at the head of this Church. I love you all! 

Love, Elder Sherrill 

PS- Oh yeah, I hit my one year mark! That's pretty weird.. haha. Time to pick up the pace, I'm losing time! 

Friday, October 14, 2016

New Transfer, New Hope

What's up everyone!? It is the beginning of a new transfer and yep, a new companion! I finally got to meet my new companion and his name is Elder Wintercorn! He is a stud!  He is straight out of Sandy, Utah and has been in Japan for about 6 months. We have only had a few days together but I can tell this transfer will already be one of my favorites. He works really hard and is a very spiritual missionary which is essential in helping others come closer to Christ. 

So this week started off fairly slow with transfer calls but ended way fast and busy. During the first couple days my old companion packed while I prepared to get Elder Wintercorn. We went up to Fukuoka, said our goodbyes and then I met my new companion. As soon as we got back to Nakatsu it was time to work again and boy did we work hard! We knew we weren't going to have much time to dendo this weekend because of conference so we went out and talked to everyone we could see. I always feel like I get recharged at the beginning of a new transfer to work extra hard, be more obedient, and to have the faith to see more miracles and this transfer is no different. Elder Wintercorn and I have set high goals for this transfer and we are expecting to see them because we know the Lord will bless and help us as we fully submit our service to him. 

General Conference!!! Wow! Let me just say this was the best weekend ever! I learned so much from the talks and by the end I just felt spiritual overfilled, it was the best feeling ever. There were so many good talks so I feel like I can't choose a favorite but if I really had to pick a couple I would say I loved Elder Robert D. Hales talk at the beginning of conference as he talked about the Savior being your personal caregiver. Another one I liked was Elder Hollands talk about home teaching and sharing the gospel out of love for others, not merely just because it is our duty. Each individual talk I felt was amazing and I learned so much personally from each one, this week I am going to reread all the talks and my notes and see what else I can get from them. I invite you to do the same! 

Moving on to our investigator, Yamasaki! She is doing really good, we met with her just yesterday to introduce my new companion and to set up a couple appointments this week. She said she has been praying to God every single day and feeling closer to him! What a miracle! This week our plan is to set a baptismal date with her because last week as a part of Elder Lottis last lesson with her we invited her to baptism and she accepted! So we think with a little more she could easily have a date she can be working towards.

Overall, it was a very good week and I am honestly stoked for this new transfer! These past few transfers I felt like I was getting somewhat lazy and not being as obedient as I could have been and I feel like it definitely was effecting the work as well as myself personally. So to change that and to really call down the powers of heaven and see a baptism in Nakatsu this transfer I have made some changes and plan on sticking with them because I know the Lord will bless us and the people we come in contact with. This work is impossible to do without His help and without the companionship of the Holy Ghost. Just changing small things here and there I have already seen more help come to me and been able to feel more love for the service I have been rendering. This gospel is true and what an awesome time it is to be a missionary, I couldn't be happier and I'm excited to work hard and see what the Lord has in store for us this transfer. I love you all, have a great week and take care! 

Love, Elder Sherrill 


Hello everyone! So somehow another 6 weeks have past by and it's time for transfers again! We received our transfer call and........ I'm staying! My current companion Elder Lotti is going up to Hiroshima and my new companion is coming up from Okinawa. His name is Elder Wintercorn and he is going to be transfer 5 so that means I will be going senior companion! I'm pretty excited for this next transfer and I think it will be a lot of fun. I will fill you all in on the details next week once I finally meet him. 

This week was packed with so much to do and it seriously flew by. I'll see if I can give a quick over view of all that happened. But before I talk about that I forgot to mention something in my email last week. On the way back from Kumamoto it was raining and as we look out the window we see a couple guys riding out on their bikes and it turned out to be missionaries. As we rode past them I looked to see if I knew who it was and guess who it was? Elder Colton! My transfer 3 companion! I asked Brother Tanaka to pull over in front of them and so we jumped out and needless to say I think he wasn't expecting me to pop out of a random car in the middle of Kumamoto haha so he was a little surprised. It was pretty funny and way random that we ended up seeing each other but he is doing good and working way hard in Kumamoto right now!

Moving onto this week, first things first we went to the Beach in Fukuoka! It was way fun and I got to play some sand volleyball which really made me miss playing sports haha. After a chill p-day with the zone we headed back to Chikushino that night because we were going to have Junkais (companion exchange) with our District Leader. I got to junkai with my old companion Elder Ratzlaff and man was it fun. It was cool to see how both of our dendo techniques have improved and changed over the past two transfers. He is a really humble guy who just radiates the spirit so having him to dendo with is so powerful. With that, I have been pretty blessed so far on my mission to have some pretty good companions, so I hope that will continue! Haha. Oh and also while I was in Chikushino that night I guess the secret of me cutting hair got out.. because they both asked me to cut their hair for them.. Missionary by day and a barber by night. I am definitely honing my skills! 

That next day we had District Meeting and that morning the District Leader asked me if I could prepare a short training on a certain topic. I of course said yes and let me just say.. it was probably the weirdest training I have ever given. Guess what my topic was? Body Language. Yes. Body language haha. After he told me I was like "are you serious?" I thought he was like playing a joke on me. But sure enough he was serious so I spent that personal study searching for any kind of church material (scriptures, conference talks, videos, etc) that could back up my teaching about it. As you could imagine I didn't find to much haha so I kinda winged it going off of things I had remembered hearing and learning about body language before the mission and applied it to us as we contact people when we dendo. It actually didn't go to bad! 

Next up we had a party here in Nakatsu! An old missionary who served here about 10 years ago, his wife, and baby boy came to visit so we threw a party for them and it was a lot of fun. My companion and I have been doing a lot of role play lessons with members lately and asking for referrals at the end and this week we taught the Ogura couple in our branch it was probably the best lesson I've ever taught to a member! I'm not sure why it was so good but the spirit was just really powerful during the lesson and my companion and bounced off each other well and it just felt really natural to teach. I'm really bummed my companion and I haven't been able to teach much these past couple transfers because I feel we teach pretty well together. On top of that I am at a point where I am starting to get a lot more confident in my teaching skills because I've been doing it longer and Japanese isn't as big as a barrier as it used to be. I really hope I have some opportunities to teach more in the future because it really is my favorite part of being a missionary! 

On Sunday though I suppose my wish was granted because we had opportunity to teach 2 member present lessons which was really good. One was to our main investigator Yamasaki who is doing really good and the other was to that guy we found the other week on the street! It was that one guy we met at night who I shared the story about and asked us all the questions. So we called and he agreed to meet after church for us to teach him! It was a good lesson and the spirit was there but unfortunately he just isn't prepared at this time. He was more just interested in our teachings and what we believed rather than actually seeking spiritual truth for himself. We did give him a Book of Mormon though so we are hoping through him reading that he will come to be more prepared so we can teach him in the future. 

Well I don't have much time left and I feel like I've already written a lot so I will wrap it up with a couple other things that happened. 
  • I completed my journal! I've managed to write every single day since my first day in the MTC. It's crazy to go back and read all the different experiences I've had so far. I recently got a new journal though and I love it! 
  • Suit season started October 1st... which means all elders are required to wear their suit jacket every day. Its pretty much the worst. Luckily the mission president postponed it to October 16th since its been so hot lately but I have a feeling it will still be hot then. 
  • Sister Tanaka's non member husband prayed at the end of our weekly visit with her! Something I have never seen him done so I was way cool and powerful! 
  • Visited lots of less actives and invited them to General Conference next week. I'm so excited to watch it! 
  • My companion and I got 3 return appointments our last full day of dendo together yesterday! It was way fun! 

Overall, I had a pretty good week! I'm excited for this new transfer and for all the new miracles we will see. Also, I'm extremely jealous of everyone in America because they have already seen General Conference! We get to watch it next week and I'm so stoked for it! Please tell me some of the talks you liked and I'll be sure to let you guys know what I liked next week. I hope you all have a great week! 私は君らを愛してるよ 


Monday, September 26, 2016


Elder Sherrill and his district
Hello once again everyone! Before I begin we are headed to the Beach in Fukuoka today because we have a zone P-Day so this email will be rather short because I need to catch a train soon! This week was packed with lots of fun activities so I will try and give you a quick rundown of all the things we did. 

First off this week we had district meeting as usual and I really learned a lot. There was one thing that I was reminded of during training that happened at previous training during interviews with the mission president and it resulted in a sweet miracle we saw this week! Anyways the thing I liked from the training is this, "as missionaries we are not supposed to convert people, we are just supposed to open our mouth!". I really love that! Sometimes it's way difficult because you feel like you need to do so much as a missionary but really you just have to allow for an environment for the spirit to be there and let it do the work. As I thought about that during this week I focused on contacting everyone I saw while we were riding our bikes, because I need to talk with everyone and give everyone an equal chance to hear the gospel, you never know who is prepared or not. So the other night I was riding my bike and it was way dark out. I saw a man in the distance and knew it would be awkward since it was so dark out and late at night. I stopped him anyways and as soon as he saw the name tags with the name "Christ" he said no thanks and walked off before I could even give him a flyer. A little disheartened that my effort yielding no results I continued biking and saw another man in the distance. I decided to try again and sure enough this man was prepared! 

Elder Sherrill and his district doing the "Japanese Squat"
We talked with this next man for about 30 minutes! After the initial contact he instantly started asking tons of questions about the restoration, Jospeh smith, Christian churches, missionaries, etc. He began to tell us that he was really interested in how we were different from other Christian churches. After we taught a little about the restoration we exchanged numbers and handed him a pamphlet he said he was going to go home, study it and call us so we can meet! I've had lots of good little lessons on the street with people that seemed to be really good and then later them never call. I'm not sure what it was about this one but it just felt different, my companion and I have a lot of hope for him and we think we will be able to teach him in the future.

As far as the rest of the week goes we went to Kumamoto to do service because of the recent earthquake there and it was such a good experience! We got to clean out an old school as well as go to this home on the top of a mountain and clean out all of this debris. During our service I made small talk with a man who was there by himself and he was a really nice guy who actually met with missionaries 20 years ago in college! We talked for a while because his current job was similar to my old one before the mission so hopefully that helped give him another good view of missionaries just in case he ever runs into them in his hometown. 

We had lots of other little activities here and there this week but I don't have enough time to explain them so I'll just bullet point them out!
  • Our new kinjin investigator from last week Kudou san fell through, so that was sad
  • We had yaku niku for dinner after Kumamoto
  • The people who took us to Kumamoto (Tanaka) the back of their car fell in a ditch after they dropped us off so we had to pull their car out haha 
  • Had English class as usual and we got a new student! A nice mom with her daughter 
  • Went home teaching and visited Mitsuko, she fed us lots of food of course

Overall a very good week that honestly flew by! I think the biggest thing I learned though was just opening my mouth and continuing to share the gospel in any situation that I am in. Heavenly Father has prepared many of his children and they come to us in many different ways! So even as a member continue to look for ways to "open your mouth" and share the gospel with others! Have a great week, I love you all! 

Love, Elder Sherrill 

Monday, September 19, 2016

Sneaky Photography

Hello friends and family! This week went by really fast and was pretty good. If you're wondering what the title of this email is, it will make sense once you read the story at the end of my email haha. But anywhoser, on to my week! This week was a lot better than last to be honest and I got out of the slump I was in last week. Not having much success lately has been hard on my companion and I but we had some good dendo and meeting with our mission president for interviews helped out a lot. 

On their way to interviews with Kaicho! 
During the beginning of the week we met with a woman named Mitsuko in the Branch. She is like a grandma to the missionaries. She was baptized just 2 years ago (2 weeks before I was actually) and knows everything about every single missionary that has ever served in Nakatsu since then. She absolutely loves the missionaries and always invites us to her home for meals. So we went to her home with one of her friends who isn't a member and had a way fun time with her! 

Funny guy they met on the street. He rapped in English 
Next we went to Fukuoka to have interviews with the mission president and his wife. The training we received from the assistants was really beneficial and helped me out a lot. The main focus of the training was finding new investigators, something we could use a lot of help on haha. They shared some tips and that was good, during the training I got to meet with President and Sister Egan and it was so good! I felt so much love and support from Sister Egan. Then as I met with Kaicho he gave me some really good advice on a couple questions I had and told me to "call down the powers of heaven" on Nakatsu. He said he believed in us seeing a baptism in Nakatsu, and asked us to have the faith and willingness to see it happen. I really want to see success here so I've decided I need to change some things to see it happen.

Cleaning up after Eikaiwa

Just last Saturday night we made an awesome return appointment with a new person! My companion went out to dendo while it was raining pretty hard and there was this huge festival in Nakatsu. I literally thing every young person in the city was there, it was the most people I have ever seen in Nakatsu! We went to the festival and talked to lots of people and handed out lots of English class flyers. I think my favorite dendo is talking to young people, they seem to be a lot more open to our message than others, and on top of that they are always so much fun to talk too! But anyways, on to the return appointment we got. After we talked to people at the festival we did some dendo on a near by apartment and found this really nice woman named Kudou. She had met missionaries once before about a year ago but never heard the lessons. This time as we taught her a short lesson at the door she accepted our invitation to baptism, a Book of Mormon, and was willing to meet again in a couple days! It was one of the best totsuzen lessons I've had in a while. My companion and I are pretty stoked for her and we feel she could really progress into a solid investigator. 

There's lots of other little things that happened during the week but that's all the main stuff for now! Sorry I don't have to much time, but to end I want to share a funny story and explain the meaning behind my email's subject name. The other day like I said my companion and I were in Fukuoka for interviews with the mission president. On our way back home we had to take a subway from the church to the main train station in Fukuoka. As we got on the subway it was pretty packed as it usually is. Standing right next to my companion and I were two college age Japanese girls. My companion and I were facing each other and they were off to the right side of my companion, so I could see them but my companion couldn't. I noticed them kind of staring at us but didn't think much of it because most people stare at gaijin (foreigners) in Japan. My attention was brought back to them however when I noticed one of the girls trying to nonchalantly lift up her phone to sneak a picture of us. Before I could tell my companion so he could see it too ....*SNAP* yep, she forgot that her sound was on haha. So my companion turns around and looks at them while I just start to quietly laugh. They both try to play it off and hide their laughter at their failed attempt to sneak a picture. My companion and I resume talking and I see in the corner of my eye she lifts up her phone again to take another picture! This time I figured I'd play along so as I continue to talk with my companion I throw up a peace sign to let them know I see them taking pictures. This goes on for about the next few minutes as they continue to try and sneak pictures until we arrive at the main station in Fukuoka. As we leave the subway I turn around and say to them, "issho ni shashin wo toritai desu ka?" They both look at me a little surprised that I just spoke Japanese to them and then of course say yes. They asked who we were and what we were doing in Japan so we were able to tell them about who we are and our purpose as missionaries. After we took the picture my companion and I said bye and left on our way. As I thought about it later I was thinking if I shouldn't have talked to them since I didn't get to share any kind of spiritual message with them. But then I thought that not everyone we come in contact with needs to have a message forced on them. I think some people just need to be reassured that we as missionaries are normal people who just want to help others. The image of missionaries isn't the best in Japan but if through these kind of small encounters we have with people help them get a better image of missionaries maybe someday down the road they will be more willing to listen to a pair of missionaries that stop them or knock on their door just because they have met us before and remember us being friendly. Anyways, hopefully we can continue to help people not be afraid or apprehensive about missionaries. 

Even though it's been difficult here and there while I've been working in 中津 I really do love the area, the members, and my companion. It really has been a lot of fun to serve here and I hope I stay here for longer (transfers are somehow coming up soon again!) thank you everyone for all your support and love! Have a great week!