Sunday, January 29, 2012


Hola Familia,
Well, here I am, typing on this computer with my mind blown with all of the things that had happened in the past week. I literally don`t know where to start. So, I guess I should just start somewhere. Yes sir, I am now officially being kicked out of Kobe and transferring to TOYOOKA!!! The great outdoor wonder in the
middle nowhere. I am so excited to go! Get this, its also snowing ridiculous amounts up there right the chances of me dying from the cold are pretty high. I joke, I joke. But its going to be so great because the zone is full of Japanese people and my companion is Japanese. First Japanese companion ever! Good old Elder Hasegawa. Yup, so I`ll still be a zone leader up there and I`m probably going to forget English...but it`s good. I`ve always wanted to be immersed in the culture and language of Japan and this will be my chance.

Anyways, I don`t have much time on the computer left. I`m going to go to the aquarium with the district for the last P day in Kobe!
I`m kinda of sad leaving Kobe though. My recent convert came calling this morning frantically asking me whats going to happen. I love that guy so much! He will definitely one of the things that I`ll miss the most about Kobe. I kind of realized I`m gonna be leaving quite a lot in Kobe when I transfer out. I mean, we even found a Peruvian family this past Friday. Oh yeah Dad, I taught the Restoration in Spanish! Six years of studying finally came in handy. Okay, well I have another crazy experience! So turns out that other Peruvian investigator we were visiting was actually a member who`s been less active for a while. But its amazing because he still kept in touch with the missionary who baptized him...and turns out his missionary actually knows Luis Cardenas very well! Small world huh? So, long story short, Alberto (less active`s name) is now on his first steps to becoming active. He even wants to convert his wife who`ll be coming to Japan next month and get married in the temple!
There were so many miracles this week! It was so great, part member `s husbands taking steps toward baptism, Chinese people, Peruvian families and guitars.
Okay, love you.
Elder Saito

Sunday, January 22, 2012


Buenos dias mi familia,

Como estan? Estoy bien aqui en Japon. Well, that's about all I can do with my six years of Spanish. But, it`s gonna come in handy this upcoming week because we`re gonna be teaching two awesome Peruvian guys who just showed up to church yesterday. Let me ask you, what is better than people show up to church wanting to learn about the restored gospel? Anyways, just thought that I would inform you Dad. Spanish and Portuguese are actually very useful over here, who would`ve thought?

Well, another fantastic week well spent in my beloved Kobe. This week was wonderful, mainly for the fact that we had the whole week to just go out and work. No meetings, no conferences, no distractions, nada. It felt so refreshing to get out there and spread the gospel to my brethren. I also feel like I learn the most when I`m teaching pure and simple doctrine and testifying within lessons. Its always interesting to have a few of those "tuffer" investigators who have deep doctrinal concerns and doubts. I`m sure any missionary understands what I mean. Not those who do not accept invitations to accept the gospel plainly on ignorance or stubbornness, but those who do have genuine concerns for the welfare of their souls and those who do want to find the truth. Granted, teaching those who are completely ready for the gospel and accept all your commitments is one thing, but those who do have the concerns and the doubts whom overcome them through earnest prayer always seem to have strong testimonies. Why? Because they felt/feel the Spirit within their lives. You can argue and deny doctrine, philosophy, theology for hours on end and not get anywhere. I know, I`ve done that plenty of times throughout my mission. But nobody can ignore the powerful influence of the Spirit testifying truth. Those who say they don`t feel anything when they pray or read out of the Book of Mormon simply do not recognize the soft, whispering promptings of the Holy Spirit that the Lord is giving to them. And I feel that that`s the only way somebody can truly convert to the gospel. I mean, its written in Doctrine and Covenants section 50 as well. We teach through the power of the Spirit which helps us teach truth and our investigators accept it through the Spirit. And by doing this, both can rejoice by the enlightenment that is brought forth but, if its done any other way, it is not of God. Arguing and trying to persuade people is not the correct way. You might be able to lead someone to baptism, but that`ts not true conversion. Plus, I don`t even have enough knowledge about the gospel to be able to persuade anyone.
Uh, anyways. Sorry for ranting. This came into my head because I had a deep lesson with one of our investigators who has a lot of doctrinal doubts. He has the mindset that all roads lead to truth and if anyone takes a road, doesn`t matter which road, he`ll be saved. This guy can argue for I just told him to pray about it. That should resolve everything.
Anyways, I`m going to go now. I want to go and make more songs on my guitar with Elder Meyer and Burns. Thanks for everything you guys! I LOVE YOU!!!
Mucho amor,
Elder Saito


Sup 家族!
元気? Its so good to hear from all of you guys! Looks like there`s quite a bit going on over yonder. I can`t believe that Alisha had her baby already!!! I was way confused when I first opened my email Selena, but I`m way stoked for her. Tell her mucho luck with parenthood! Oh, by the way, you (Selena) and you (Richard) need to get on the parent train as well. Ya`ll need to follow the prophets words and hurry up and build the kingdom of, I wan`t to be an uncle by the end of this year!
Anyways, I`m still bewildered that Spohr is getting married. I`m way stoked that he`s decided not to get married until I came back from my mission though, I would be so angry if I missed out on another wedding! But, it`s all good. I`m sure that there will be more to come along the line. Oh, 話めちゃくちゃ変わるけど...keep me updated on what happens to the Giants in the NFL playoffs okay? That`s the only worldly thing that I`m concerned about right now, I promise.
Well, anyways. This week was absolutely amazing! I love being a leader because you get to serve and work with so many different sets of missionaries and I feel like every encounter I have with them becomes a good learning experience. So, I started the week off getting mild food poisoning and vomiting. In fact, it was the first recorded time that I`ve ever regurgitated on my mission! And what makes things better is that I had to go on a three day exchange with the Kitarokko elders on that exact same day because one of the missionaries up there was pretty sick and needed to rest as well. But, I felt that it was necessary that I had to go up there and work at that I sacrificed the morning and slept till noon. I felt so wamp (disobedient) cause I`ve never slept in that late on my mission before, but it was necessary or I probably would`ve died during that exchange. It was funny because I looked pretty pathetic when I woke up cause I was sleeping in my suit but after resting for a bit I felt much better. So we went ahead and followed through with the exchange. I am so thankful that I chose to go up to Kitarokko because the next few days with Elder Wilcox were full with miracles and great teaching/learning experiences! I mean, only the first night was terrible on my body but I got much better by the next day. But seriously, just getting out and working with the Spirit produces so many miracles. Elder Wilcox just illuminates with the Spirit so we had people coming up and contacting us wanting to come to church. I`m telling you, it was a great learning experience for the both of us and I think the Lord compensated for my weakness.
Yup, so most of my week consisted of me working and building other areas. I love just going out and about into other areas and just seeing miracles with younger missionaries. Its GREEAAATTTT! Yeah, I had a long talk with President during interviews about the rest of my mission and what I want to do/accomplish with my time here and he`s thinking of possibly getting me the traveling AP`s job on my last few transfers. That would be my dream! But you know, I`ll go where the Lord wants me to go. Whatever He needs me to do you know? Anyways, transfers are coming up pretty quickly too...looks like I`m on my last sprint of my mission. Can`t get lazy!
Well, all in all, this week was a great learning experience for me. I`m grateful for everything the Lord allowed me to experience! Oh, and just to add on to this great week, Brother Yoshida is now an official Aaronic Priesthood holder! He`ll be fulfilling his responsibility by passing the sacrament in now time. I love that guy so much!
Yes sir, I need to get going now. Thanks for all the emails you guys! 愛してるぜ―!!! I hope your week is great!
Mucho amor,
Elder Saito


Thursday, January 12, 2012


Hello, hello, hello, hello we welcome you today!(hello)

Why hello family, how are you today?
Well, I would have to say another fine week on the other side of the world has now been recorded in my book of life. The "aftershocks" of お正月(New Years) is finally starting to die down and the normal dendo speed is starting up! Good thing, I swear I would of went クルクルぱあ (loco) if things didn`t start picking up anytime soon. It actually still hasn`t fully hit me that its the new year yet. I mean, there`s no snow on the ground so I automatically think that winter still hasn`t come...maybe its just a Utah thing. But don`t get me wrong, its still freezing cold outside! Anyways, the Kobe ward is good to their missionaries and we were blessed to have many dinner appointments throughout the week. I love Kobe ward!
Yes, I also had my second Christmas taikai this Monday and Zone Leader Council the next day as well. It was good because I was able to get to know a few of the younger missionaries throughout the mission. It is crazy, the mission is unbelievably young! I`m one of the dinosaurs of the mission now...but its all good because I feel that the mission is in good hands. I mean, my son (Elder Lythgoe) is seeing miracles in his new area as a district leader, so I have peace in mind to know that the mission wont plummet after my generation has left. I guess its just the circle of life, just at a faster speed now. But, during zone leader council I had an epiphany. I had the strongest feeling that rest of my mission will largely consist of me, training younger missionaries, so the can know how to get things done. Its not like I`m putting myself higher than any of them but a good amount of failures and successes will justify my desires. Things that I had learned from President McIntyre had helped my life out so much...that there`s now way that I wouldn`t share it to other missionaries! I know it could help them, I know it. Mainly because it helped me out so much as a younger missionary. I had a chance to go on a companion exchange with another missionary this week and it was an amazing experience. Usually on kokans I just get out the door and work asap...but I really felt strongly to just sit and talk with him for a little while. Turns out this missionary had been really struggling the past few weeks and wasn`t feeling the joy from the work. So, we took a good hour or so just talking openly to each other and I was able to share a bunch of experiences and stories that I had learned on my mission with him. After the kokan, my district leader gave me a call and asked me what I had done to his companion because he had changed and was just getting out their and working so hard. I feel so blessed to be able to serve my fellow missionaries as a zone leader. I think that its really teaching me things that will help me later on in my life! Anywho, its really interesting to have had two mission presidents. Their ways of teaching and running a mission are much different from one another but you can learn so much from each of them. I have a feeling that the Lord had specially placed me in between these two men so I could learn and benefit as much as possible. President McIntyre had taught me how to work and get things done. President Zinke is now teaching me to become humble and more reliant on the Spirit. Great combination I would say, I definitely needed both of them. Now I gotta continue teaching what I know to missionaries, members and investigators alike!
Hm, I don`t know what else to really write...this week was interesting though. I met very... intriguing dendo-ing this past week, but its all for experience. I love talking to strangers, you never know what can happen. Anyways, our recent convert, 吉田兄弟 is doing wonderful! He`ll be getting the Aaronic priesthood next week and he`ll be able to pass the sacrament in no time. My goodness, and this guy`s understanding of the Book of Mormon is ridiculous! He didn`t have much to do during the he read the Book of Mormon. Read itて言うか...destroyed it. He`s already finished with third Nephi! Its pretty insane, I`ve never seen such an avid reader, not even in some fully active members either. Great example, I`m telling you. And its way crazy because he busts out verses out of the Book of Mormon and it becomes the subject of the lesson every time. It`d be way embarrassing to let him know that the first time I`d ever finished the Book of Mormon was a week into the MTC!!! haha But whatever, I seriously love this guy. My next goal for him is to get him married in the temple! DO IT YOSHIDA!
Anywho, life is good. I`m getting old, but who isn`t? Can`t wait to tear it up in Kobe again! Thanks for all the emails by the way, I really appreciate hearing from all of you! HAVE A GREEEEAAAAATTTTT week okay? Love you lots.
Con amor,
Elder Saito

Saturday, January 7, 2012


明けおめ、明けおめ!Family, can you guys believe that its 2012! I no can believe it! Pretty crazy huh? Well, sorry for being late with my email, things have just been so busy for us lately that we had to move our P-day a little bit. But hey, being busy is always a good thing. Well, I now officially have my second Christmas/New Years in Japan under my belt now. What an accomplishment eh? Who would`ve thought that I would make it all the way to 2012?
Yeah, yeah, yeah. So looking back at this week...I realized how much we partied (missionary appropriate of course)! We were able to go and hit up the zoo with members in our zone, have amazing dinner appointments with our beloved church members, a big sports taikai, and of course waking up at 4:00 in the morning to see the first sunrise of the New Year. And yes...we did have permission to do so! No, but really this week was a blast! Not only for all the awesome activities, but for all the spiritual moments that I was able to experience. This week was a great opportunity for me to look back and reflect on the past year and see all the things I was able to accomplish. Our stake president says it best "one of the greatest joys you can feel in your life is when you look back and realize how much you have grown." Its so true isn`t it?
It was really great because I was able to talk to a member in my zone who`s been struggling for the past bit and share a few of my experiences/things I had learned in the past year. It felt so good to reflect and simply testify about how if we work through trials and struggles, the Lord would help us. Man, this past year had been one of the most challenging experiences I`ve ever had but without a single doubt, the most rewarding. I couldn`t even explain all of the things that I had learned in the past year. I mean, one who doesn`t learn something out of the trials that the Lord gives them is a fool...granted, it was an extremely hard concept for me to understand as well. Its so amazing to see how the Lord blesses you on your mission. I would say two years is a small small price for what you get in return!
I was also able to thing about the time that I have left on my mission and the rest of the year. My companion and I were able to set New Years Resolutions with each other and it really helped me think about what I wanted to accomplish with my time left on the field as well as after. But, I don`t feel like typing them all...cause I`m lazy. Well, the point is that I have goals!
Well, anyways, its way good to hear from you guys! I hope your New Years was awesome and it was so good to talk to you guys on the phone. Oh and thanks to everyone who sent me Christmas wishes! Much appreciated! Anyways, I gotta go and do what misisonaries do now. Ok? Hope your doing okay Mom, I`ll be praying for your health! Oh and are old. At least you`ll be able to get discounts at Ross for being 60! Okay, love you guys lots!
Elder Saito