Monday, January 24, 2011


Hey Family!

How are you guys? Thanks for the email! It was good to finally hear from you, its been quite a long and busy week since transfers. So Ryan is finally going on the big mission now huh? I`m so excited! He`s seriously going to love it so much, I mean...its the best two years you could possibly spend! Tell him good luck and that I love him much-o much-o. I bet his farewell talk was amazing too, the concept of a mission changes peoples lives so much. Its the "grow up" period. You learn so much within such a short amount of time.

Oh, Elder Hinton came over and said hi? Saweet! I can`t believe he actually did that. Tell him "Otsukaresamadeshita" for dealing with me and that I love him! He was seriously a great missionary, I`m surprised he was able to deal with a wampsac like me. But anyways, yeah keep in contact with him, I know he`ll love to practice his Japanese with natives. Oh! I saw Emma during transfers too! I forgot to mention that! It was so nice to see her. When she saw me she kept on telling me on how big
I`ve gotten and how I look so much like a missionary. It was funny because I didn`t realize how tiny she was until now! haha

Well...right now I`m emailing you guys sitting on a couch in a internet cafe. Where you may ask?...Iwade-shi in Wakayama-ken that is! You may have to scramble for a map to know where I really am because its pretty inaka (country side). Compared to the tokai (big city)of Okamachi...this is a sleeply little town. I`ve constructed a simple equation to help you guys understand how its like here. Payson, Utah x rice fields - people actually walking on the street + farmers + Kindai University = Iwada-shi. The train that took us to Iwada was like...a one cart, thats exaggerating. I meant two carts. Our apartment is literally ten steps away from the small eki. In the day, you`ll be lucky to find 10 people walking on the streets that you can actually contact so most of our dendo consists of housing. As of now, we have two investigators and our branch consists of about 10 active memebers. Pretty small huh? In fact, its the second smallest branch in Japan.

I LOVE IT HERE SO MUCH!!! This is exactly what I was looking for! A place where I`m going to have to work my hardest to get going. This place is nothing compared to Okamachi. This, is, the, INAKA (country side)! And everyone knows that the inaka is the land of faith and miracles. I like it because it makes me feel like I`m at home because there`s mountains that surround us so its kinda like Utah Valley. Seriously, this place is awesome. Our church is on the second floor of an office building next to a mall. We share floors with a resturant company called "Onions and Tomatos" and the church consits of two rooms, the sacrament and primary. Yesterday at church, we had about 12 people there (including the missionaries) and it turns out that missionaries have to give talks every week because we don`t have enough memebers. This place is great! The branch seriously becomes your family and people here are so nice. Oh and turns out that my last companion, Rahn Choro and Emma have both served here before! What a small world! So, my companion`s name is Elder Niven. He`s a really great missionary, a bit quite, but still a good missionary. He`s only a transfer ahead of me so we`re working as co-seniors together. Its a really good experience for me because I need to start stepping it up as a missionary!

Well, from the four days I`ve already spent here in Iwade, I`ve already learned a valuable lesson. And that happens to be patience. I never realized how much patience you really need when you`re working in the inaka. I`m so used to the fast moving enviornment of Osaka that I`ve forgotten about patience. But, now that I have the chance, I`m going to slow things down and work faithfully. Faith=patience. Without faith, nothing will work. I know as long as I go on the Lord`s time and not my own, we`ll be able to see miracles here in Iwade.

Okay, well I have to go. Hope you guys are doing amazing! I want you to know that I`m okay and transfers went by fine. Pray for the people in Iwade so my companion and I will start seeing miracles! I love you guys! Peace.

Mucho love love,
Elder Saito

Monday, January 17, 2011


Hey herro hi!

HOW ARE YOU FAMILY!? Its good to hear back from you guys. I can`t believe that this is going to be the last time I write you guys from this computer. The last week of the transfer was a way good one. It went by quickly but thats because we were working hard! We`ve finally gotten out of the Oshogatsu stage and things are kickin back into place. BUT, first off, how are you guys? Oh, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!! I hope you had an awesome birthday! It looks like the birthday party/sushi tabehodai went grood. Thanks for the pictures you guys sent me! Rupert looks like a demon like usual.

Ryan is leaving in like a week! Does he have everything ready for his mission? I can`t believe it, my boy`s growing up right infront of my eyes. Soon he will join me on this island...soon. Thats so exciting, he`s going to love it over here so much! So, Martin Luther King`s holiday was pretty relaxed I assume. It was probably freezing in Provo wasn`t it? Osaka was pretty chilly this past week. It even started to snow for a little bit!

Lets see, this week was actually pretty eventful. The Senri elders in our zone set up this amazing concert at the church on Saturday. It was sooooo good. There was a good turn out too; about 50ish people showed up. Out of the 50, about 7 were non-members. It was a great dendoing experience for the members. I swear the Senri/Okamachi memebers were on fire! They helped out with the concert so much and fellowshipped the non-members like crazy. The concert was family themed and a lot of our memebers as well as us participated in the concert. All the missionaries in our zone bore akashis, sang Families Can Be Together Forever and then after the concert, we gave church tours and had a little shokujikai. It was such a great atmosphere, you could almost feel this cloud of love that filled the air...or it could`ve been the heaters because it was burning hot in there. Either one works because the people loved it. A lot of the non memebers after said they liked how we emphasize on love and the importance of families. One of the non members even came to chruch the next day! Twas a good experience for sure.

Other then that...dendo has been normal. Yesterday, we found an awesome new investigator streeting. He`s this huge Japanese (way taller and thicker then me)guy who had an eyebrow and tounge piercing as well as fat dreads. I started contacting him by asking if he listened to reggae. Turns out he loves metal/hardcore music and in his free time he makes Omens (Japanese demon masks) We had a good conversation about American metal/harcore music and then jumped into the Gospel. We were able to set up another appointment with him and even commit him to baptism. (yes, we`re so hardcore that we commit people to baptism on the streets) He said he would like to so we`ll see what happens~ I`m super sad that I`ll be transfering out before we get to teach him again though...but oh well.

Speaking of transferring...this is going to be my first real transfer! I wonder where I`m going to go. My roommates are telling me Nishiwaki or somewhere way deep in the inaka. I hope I get sent to the inaka! The inaka is were missionaries turn into real men. Its also the area of miricales. My companion told me that he only found 2 people in one transfer but still saw a bunch of miricales. Well, anywhere I go at this point I`ll be happy. I`m determined to work as hard as I can. I have some goals that I`m going to have to accomplish in my next area. First, I`m going to love everyone. Literally, everyone. Second, I`m going to assume leadership postion so I need to become more responsible. Third, I`m going to see at least one baptism this next transfer. How am I going to accompish these goals? Easy. Work as hard as I possibly can, then trust that with the Lord, anything is possible.

Anywyas. I wish I could tell you were I`m going to be transferring this next week...but I can`t. So we`ll just have to wait till next week. This week will probably be hecktic but I`m so excited! I gotta go now, but I just wanna let you guys know that I love ya! I hope you guys are doing great. Don`t worry about me, I`ll survive. Plus I`m loving the mission anyways, there`s no need to worry. OKBYE~

Mucho Amor,
Elder Saito

Sunday, January 9, 2011



Hey hey hey, how are you guys? You guys are sounding super genki so I`m happy! From the pictures dad sent to me it looks like its still snowing a bunch over there in Utah. We`ve had some snow over here periodically but it never sticks...its still gets pretty freezing cold though. How is everything else back at home? UVU and BYU are off their winter breaks now yeah? Has there been anything new thats happened lately? So whats this I hear about you guys being the Asian ward missionaries at BYU? You guys gonna get some dendo experience going on! Don`t worry, you guys are going to love it so much. Oh yeah, and I forgot you guys are going to Spain this summer weren`t you? Thats so crazy, what exactly do you have planned to do over there again?

Okay, so for all the questions you clearly highlighted bright red in my email. Number 1. Yes, my jacket is perfectly warm. Don`t worry about buying me another one. 2. I will probably be transfering on the 20th. 3. The backpack I found was online. I don`t remember where but seek and Ryan shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto him.

Oh, tell Akemichan thank you so much for the package. i was going to write a thank you letter...but I realized I threw away her box and dont have her address. Oh and the Hasegawas too...tell them thanks for the Mcdonald bucks! I dont have their address either.

Anyways, this week has been great. Dendo has finally kicked back into motion because people are coming out of their Oshogatsu hibernations! This week we were supah blessed by being able to find a bunch of new investigators. We desperately needed to refill our finding/teaching funnel because our teaching pool was kinda short. BUT, with the new year, I feel things are definitely getting better. I have a good feeling that our progressing investigators will be baptized for sure. We have a few guys that are so close, SO CLOSE!!! but there`s a few things that are holding them back from baptism. We`re really trying our best to help them strengthen their faith while inviting them to come unto Christ. But we just need to be patient and trust that the Lord has our back. Everythings going to be alright.

Well, anywho, this week we had interviews with President McIntyre. It was good to talk with him one on one about dendo and how things are going. Its been about two months since the last time we had an interview so I had more questions to ask him. So, I`m probably going to be transferred out of Okamachi by next next week. Its a bitter sweet feeling though. I really love Okamachi and I know that our investigators are close to baptism...but at the same time I`m ready for a change and see more of the Kobe misison. I wonder where I`m going to go next...hopefully in some little inaka area so I have to work my brains out. I don`t care where I go though, it`ll be a good experience no matter what. Oh, and President told me that I could very well be training next transfer. What a crazy thought...I`m so far into my mission already that I could be training...AH! It goes by so fast. Yesterday during chruch, I realized that I`ve been on my mission for 6 months already and almost started freaking out. I swear if my mission goes by as fast as my last few months have gone...I`ll cry. But a manly cry...

Anyways...I`ve been super busy lately. My emails probably dont make sense because I`m too lazy/busy to proof read them...and now I have to wrap things up because i need to go shopping. Sorry its short, but I want you guys to know that I love ya and that I`m loving dendo so much! Hope you guys are doing awesome!

Mucho amor,
Elder SAITO!!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011



あけましておめでとうございます! Happy New Year! I can`t believe 2011 is already here! AND Christmas has already passed. I blinked once...and December went away. It feels like my whole mission is flying by that quickly. Anywho, it was good talking to you guys over the phone on Christmas. It was 懐かしい to hear all of your voices...even if its only been like 5 months. It sounds like you guys are all genki genki though. Oh, thanks for the Christmas presents too! I love the electric shaver, shirt and Thai Elephant Piggy Bank. The shaver makes my beard grow twice as fast though. I forgot to shave one morning and by the end of the day I looked Philipino with my stubble. And for the Jello...I haven`t made it yet. Our ward is so nice though, we got a bunch of Christmas presents from them. Most of it were sweets so now our apartment is overflowing high-calorie sugary goodness. I need to write them thank you cards...gotta get on that. I hope you guys liked all my presents! When I saw dad`s present I knew I had to get it for him. You better put that on Sienna`s back.

So it sounds like you had quite a merry Christmas and a happy New Year. I`m glad things are going awesome over there. From the picture you guys sent me it looks like Richard and Selena are just as lazy as ever. Was it their new years resolution to sit on a couch eating out of paper plates for the rest of their lives? I kid, I kid. Tell them...or Selena at least, thanks for her letter. I`ll probably write her a month from now.

New Years here was...well Oshogatsu. Dendo was kind of slow this week. No one could really meet till the middle of January. Oshogatsu is definitely THE holiday for Japanese people. But I really liked it because I saw a lot of Japanese families spending time with each other. I love it when I see people doing that. It seems that not only in Japan, but all over the world people don`t understand the full blessings of families. Its okay if dendo was slow this week because I think it would`ve been bad on our side if we forcefully met with our investigators and took time away from their families. But we were still able to meet with a few of our investigators when they could so its still all good. My companion and I went to Juso on New Years eve because its a small party city in our area and we thought that there would be a lot of people...but to our disappointment it was empty. Literally, there were like 13 people in the whole city counting us. But whatever, it was still good to dendo(proselyte) the remaining people. Everything is closed here till about the 4th ish and thats when people start coming out of their houses like bears out of hibernation. SO, that`s when the dendo will pick up. My companions and I spent New Years doing pillow talk about New Years resolutions and stuff until midnight. When midnight came, my companions and I yelled, screamed and hugged each other, then quickly repented for staying awake past curfew, and fell asleep immediately. It was quite the new years. We didn`t hear any of the kanes ringing though...which was a bummer but whatever.

On New Years day, we had a mission Sports Taikai(meeting). Only half of the mission was there but we still had a bunch of fun. Unfortunately, I didn`t see Emma their...maybe I`ll see her once I transfer. But nevertheless it was fun. I hisashiburi played soccer and football too. I was glad that I could still kinda move like I used to but the next day all of us were sore. Hopefully I don`t become a grandpa by the end of my mission. Anyways, it was way fun...and I saw my old SOAR counselor, Mario, there too. It was so random, he was the last person I thought I would see there. But he`s dating President Mcyntire`s daughter so it makes sense. Anywho, it was great to see him. This week was pretty much just filled with member meals/dinners. It was really good to build a stronger relationship with the members and refuel their dendo fire. Everyone in the ward is so nice, I`m gonna miss them once I transfer.

Which reminds me here`s the paragraph for the ward:

Dear Grandview 16th Ward,

Thank you so much for the Christmas letter! I can`t even tell you how grateful I am to receive support from my favorite ward. Its a great booster for my "dendo fire" to hear from all of you. Reading the messages from familiar names really made me feel the love that the Christmas season brings. The mission in Japan is truly amazing. The work is progressing daily and many of our brothers and sister in Japan are recognizing and feeling the love that this Gospel brings. With the new year, remember all of the blessings that come from this Gospel is through your faith in Jesus Christ. I hope all of you guys are doing well.

Much love,
Elder Saito

So anyways, it was good emailing you guys.Hope this next year will be an adventure for all of us! Be safe and work hard. OKBYE!

Mucho Ruv,
Elder Satio