Thank you all so much for skyping! I can't tell you how wonderful it
was to see you all. I'm so grateful for all of you. After skyping,
it's always hard, but it strengthens my testimony so much to now that
you are all home, safe and that the Lord is taking care of you. I love
you all so much. I loved seeing pictures of Jarom! I could tell before
hearing about him crying that he had felt the spirit so strong. I
remember doing that at my own baptism and I'm so grateful that you
were able to share with me what happened. I feel like I was there in a
way. Jarom is so special. :) you all are.
I just wanted to say I love you all so much. I pray for you all and am
so grateful for your examples to me. I'm glad you liked the presents.
Sister Hubbard xoxo
We had dinner at the Ono family house for Christmas Eve. This is a classic Christmas cake that everyone eats around Christmas time. Sister Morley and I have eaten so much cake this week! For Christmas dinner, they usually eat chicken. :) lots and lots of chicken!!
Some yummy cake a member made for us.
All of the missionaries in our mission took pictures like this for Christmas.
From Sister Morley~~
On another note, I have a funny story to share. Yesterday, Sister Hubbard and I planned on making steak for dinner because the ward gave us some. So they don't have grills in Japan so we used the fish cooker we have. It is like a little grill you put on top of the stove but anyways. I put sister Hubbard in charge of making the meat and I would make the other food. Well a few minutes later I look over and the steaks are in flames and Sister Hubbard is trying to fan the fire down. She just kept saying, "It's ok. They are just cooking! The fat is just burning." I started laughing so hard. Which I probably shouldn't have done but it was so funny. Puffs of smoke and flames went into the air as pieces of fat would hit the pan and it was so funny. I took a picture just before it got worse and then We got it under control. I also took a video that I am going to try and send. Our apartment was filled with smoke and well it was pretty bad. I am glad my dear companion is ok and that she only lost one eyebrow. Haha just kidding. She really is fine and so is the apartment. It was the hardest I have laughed in a long time.
A member asked all the missionaries a few weeks ago what food they
really miss while being here in Japan. We all said steak! They really
hardly eat it here. Sometimes they have it in fancy restaurants, but
it is really really expensive. A ward member bought us steak meet for
Christmas and we had no idea how we were going to cook it up because
we don't have a bbq or anything. In our little stoves, there is a
place that is used for cooking fish. We thought we would give it a try
with the steak meet... Lol. We now know why there is no steak to be
found in Japan. It is way too dangerous to try and cook steak in the
houses here, hahaha.
Dear Family and loved ones,
It's been a wonderful Christmas this year! Sister Morley and I saw so
many amazing miracles! Thank you for the cards and packages. I felt
overwhelmed with all of the love shown by my close friends and family.
Thank you all so much! :)
In Japan, everyone eats chicken for dinner and then has Christmas cake
for dessert. Christmas cake is a huge thing here! People are so
shocked when we tell them that in America and Canada that we don't
really eat cake for Christmas. They give us the funniest look and ask
us what we do eat then? Haha. I think the cake eating here is the
biggest part of the Christmas celebration and most everyone's favorite
part. In the members homes, they celebrate a little bit more, but most
people rally just so have a fancy chicken dinner and cake for
Christmas. It's kind of sad, but it has really helped motivate me to
share Christmas with everyone this season. We saw so so many miracles
We received a referral from a less active member two weeks ago, and
although we had met this person a couple times, we had a hard time
bringing up the gospel each time. The referral is a 15 year old girl,
and she is the sweetest, most prepared person ever! This past week, we
decided that it would be good to take Mai Chan a Christmas present.
When we got to the door we were able to meet her mother and talk with
her for quite a while. Her mother was surprised to see that her
daughter had made friends with two gaigin, but was also very excited
when meeting us. She asked us lots of questions about our church and
told us that she thought it would be a great thing for Mai Chan to go
to the church and learn about God. Her mother said that she wanted to
come to church sometime too. So amazing!! They are both kinjin!! We
were so blessed to be able to connect with both of them. :)
We've really been able to work with members this week! An older lady
in our ward who is way dendou fired took sister Morley and I out to go
caroling with her. She took us s to a few of her close friends houses.
We sang and were able to talk about the church and the real meaning of
Christmas. Kawakita Shimai prepared two book of Mormons , beautifully
wrapped up and ready for them to receive. It was neat for us to see
her give her two friends these book of Mormons and bear testimony of
the book. As missionaries, we sang Christmas carols at the eki
together and it was a really special and fun experience. Some of the
members of our ward saw us singing and were really touched. I think
other people were really touched too.
An older man in our ward called us on Christmas Eve and asked us if we
would come with him to meet some of his friends. He also had two
referrals for us and we were able to contact both of them and share
the joyous Christmas message again. We biked with him to these
people's houses on Christmas and the experience left me once again so
amazed by the members here in Matsudo. I am so humbled as I see them
work so hard to invite people to come unto Christ. They are fantastic
Our new investigator Hiromi San is continuing to read the Book of
Mormon and pray to God. She loves this gospel and I feel like we found
her this season at the right time in the right place. She is so
prepared and just soaks in everything we give her to read and learn
about. She is a huge miracle!
Yesterday, we were able to have a really good lesson with our
investigator, Shizuko San. She has been struggling lately with the
word of wisdom and her husband decided that he is against her being
baptized. Despite being heartbroken by this news, we learned that
Shizuko San wants to continue to learn and pray. We felt impressed to
promise her that as she continues to trust in God that her husbands
heart will be softened. I believe that sometime very soon she will be
baptized because of her strong faith and willingness to keep trying.
She is also a big miracle.
I found out this past week that one of my past investigators in Koiwa
was baptized! Takamura San was baptized and that was another huge
miracle! God is really blessing Japan. With all of these wonderful
Christmas miracles, my heart is so full. I am so blessed to be here to
witness the prophecies for Japan coming forth. I've shared this
before, but with the new year approaching, I would like to share Elder
Eyring's prophecy once more. His prophecy is not only for Japan, but
for members across the world. As you read the prophecy, I invite you
think about the kind of member you are. This work is the greatest,
most important work on earth! He says:
"A few years ago I spoke to the missionaries in the training center in
Japan. I promised them then that a great day would dawn in that
nation. I said that there would be a great increase in the members
speaking eagerly to those they met of their testimony of the restored
gospel. My thought then was that the courage to speak would come from
an increased admiration for the Church in that land. I know now that
the great miracle, a mighty change, will come inside the members, not
in the world around them.
They and members across the earth will love and listen and talk and
testify out of changed hearts. Bishops and branch presidents will lead
them by example. The harvest of souls will be great, and it will be
safe in the Lord's hands."
Isn't that amazing? This prophecy is being fulfilled in Japan, and I
believe it is being fulfilled across the whole world! People's hearts
are changing. People have the courage to share the gospel with others?
God is hastening his work. I encourage you all to make a goal for this
next year to share the gospel with others in some way. This church is
true. I know Joseph Smith was a true prophet and that He saw Heavenly
Father and Jesus Christ in the Sacred grove. Joseph Smith translated
the Book of Mormon by the power God. The Book of Mormon is true and
stands as the most correct book upon the face of the earth. I know it
is true. It contains a power that is not contained anywhere else. I
know Thomas S. Monson is our living prophet today. He speaks the word
of God and is empowered by the Spirit. I know that Jesus Christ is the
Savior of the world. He is my Savior and Redeemer. His Atonement is
real and has the ability to empower us to do things we could never do
by ourselves. Jesus Christ's love is never failing. His love is
perfect. I know that He loves each one of you and that He is never far
away. He is with us, right beside us, in our trials and hardships. He
has felt our pains and sorrows. He has also felt our greatest joys. He
nows what truly makes us happy and blesses us with unspeakable joys
and blessings. I testify that He knows our hearts. He was born for us.
He was chosen from the beginning to be our Rescuer and Deliverer.
Glory be to Him who said, "Here am I, send me." It is through Jesus
Christ that we are able to one day return to live with our perfect and
loving Heavenly Father. Merry Christmas. Have a wonderful new year! :)
Sister Hubbard xoxo