Monday, June 29, 2015


Dear Family, Friends and Missionaries,

This last week was our final zone conference with President and Sister Budge. It is sad to know that I won't see them again until after my mission. I am so grateful to them for all of the wonderful things they have taught me! I am excited to get to know President and Sister Nagano, though. I guess it's a blessing to have two different mission presidents - I get to learn from two great couples!

Chapman Shimai and I attended the Chiba Stake's Women's Conference on Saturday. It was fun to hear the testimonies of women of all ages. The Primary girls sang some songs for us, and the young women taught us the EFY line dance. The Relief Society women put on a fun skit about how Relief Society began. All in all it was really fun. My favorite part, though, was when a sister stood up and recited from memory the Family Proclamation! Wow, it was so powerful! I think they challenged everyone in the stake to memorize it, too. I have been working on memorizing it, too. How are you all doing with your memorization?

Yesterday was Yoru Seisankai - Evening Sacrament Meeting! There were seven of us: the four missionaries, Brother Miyazaki, Sister Sensui, and an investigator named Alex. We all had the opportunity to bear our testimonies. It was pretty fun. Apparently Kisaradzu Branch has Yoru Seisankai once a month, and I guess it makes sense because there weren't too many people there. Hopefully we can get some of our investigators to come to church sometime...

We had a lesson with Sanae san this last week at her house! We usually just meet her right after Eikaiwa, but we decided to go to her home and try to have a more formal lesson. It was amazing! She really opened up and shared her feelings with us, and we were able to read the Book of Mormon together and strengthen her. We sang a hymn at the end and it was so powerful! Wow, I love it when music is so moving! Hopefully we can have another lesson like that again soon.

We met with Eiko twice this last week and asked her why she wasn't coming to church. Her son has a ballet performance coming up soon and has had practices on Saturdays, so family fun time had been moved to Sundays instead. She said that hopefully she will be able to come to church again soon. We helped her organize her receipts, which was super fun, and we spent a lot of time just talking and building a relationship of trust. She shared with us really cool experience she had when her daughter, Marie (pronounced with three syllables) was very young. It was super powerful, and she started to cry. Eiko has so much faith! She truly is a wonderful wife and mother! I know that she will bless her family for generations.

I love you all so much! I am so grateful for your love and support! I know that this is the Lord's work. I know that families are eternal. I am so grateful for the promptings of the Holy Spirit. I love this gospel, and I love my Savior!

With love, Crandall Shimai

Monday, June 22, 2015

Aeon and Tokyo Bay

Dearest Family and Friends,

Happy Father's Day to the most wonderful dad in the world! I am so grateful for my dad and for all that he has done for me! His love and support is priceless! Likewise, I am grateful for my loving Heavenly Father. He guides me every day to do the things that I need to.

We had a busy week this week. I never realized how inconvenient meetings could be... We always had our district and zone meetings in Matsudo when I was there, so I never had to travel far. Now, our meetings are in Tougane, about an hour train ride away! This week we have Zone Conference with President and Sister Budge, our last one ever. We will have another Zone Conference next week with President and Sister Nagano, the first of many! Both conferences will be in Inage... Another hour train ride away! It'll all be worth it, though.

I'm a little short on time, so I just want to share about one of our investigators. Her name is Takahama san. We met with her on Saturday, and she talked our ears off about her family. She loves her family, and she said that she sees us as her own daughters. It was great to teach her about the Plan of Salvation. As we hugged goodbye, she almost started crying. I was surprised at how much genuine love she had for us even though it was our (well, my) first time teaching her. She came to church yesterday as well, and she said that she would do her best to come back. I think that we will see her progress a lot in the coming weeks, hopefully to baptism!

We taught the Gospel Principles class yesterday, and it was my first time teaching a lesson at church! It was a lot of fun and a great experience. I look forward to teaching more in the future and improving my teaching skills.

Today we went to the Aeon Mall... And it was the nicest mall I have ever been to! Apparently it is the second biggest in Japan. The floor was so clean that it was reflective! We walked around and looked at different shops... And we tended to gravitate to the kitchenware shops rather than the clothing shops. It was fun just to wander around and look at stuff. I looked at kimonos and yukatas, but they were all so expensive... We also went to the bay today and took pictures. It was a busy Pday!

I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to teach here in Kisaradzu! I know that these people are being prepared by God. I know that this is His work. He will move it forward!

Love, Crandall Shimai

Monday, June 15, 2015


Sisters Chapman & Crandall
Dearest Family, Friends, and Missionaries,

I hope you all had a great week! Mine was super busy with packing my bags and then unpacking them... I was a little stressed until I finally finished unpacking, and we just cleaned up the kitchen today, so that was great. I'm looking forward to cleaning the rest of the apartment - which, by the way, is super fancy! No heated floors, but it does feel more modern. We have a heated toilet seat, which we had to unplug because it's too hot now...

Wow, Kisaradzu is so cool! The branch is way tiny, but the church building (the first floor of an apartment building) is super nice and friendly. I love it here! Kisaradzu is way more rural than Matsudo. There is greenery everywhere! There is a river that is full of koi, and sometimes as you bike by you can see the turtles basking on the side. ^_^ Kisaradzu is on a little peninsula by Tokyo bay. We're about three meters above sea level, so pray that there aren't any tsunamis anytime soon.

My amazing companion is Chapman Shimai! We have very similar personalities. We always get each other's jokes, which is great. I love her so much, and I am so excited to work with her this transfer!

We visited a few people this week. Most of the recent converts here have already gone inactive, so I think we'll be visiting a lot of them. I think the weirdest part for me is that we don't separate the investigators based on gender... Today was my first time teaching a male investigator! It was way weird.

We teach Eikaiwa three times every week: Wednesday and Friday, and Kodomo Eikaiwa on Saturdays. After normal Eikaiwa, we teach a lady named Sanae san. She loves to play the piano, so she will play hymns and we'll sing with her, and then we'll go over the meaning of the hymns. Sanae san isn't the only investigator that we sing with – I feel like we sing with everyone here! I love it!

Another of our investigators is named Eiko. She had a baptismal date and was apparently looking really good, but then her husband was super hantai (against her being baptized). She doesn't want to ruin the relationship. Whenever she tries to bring up baptism or the church, he starts to ignore her. Super weird stuff. Apparently there are a lot of hantai husbands here. The branch has four priesthood holders - many of the members are women whose husbands are not members. I am excited for the day when Kisaradzu will become a ward, although I don't know if I'll be here.

Today we went to a Daibutsu, a large statue of Buddha. It was so cool! We walked up to the top (inside) and took a lot of pictures. There was a statue of Mary and Jesus, which made me super excited. Apparently the statue was made as a sign of peace between Japan and Siberia. Way cool.

I had the opportunity to share my testimony at church on Sunday. I feel very strongly that this is where I need to be. Chapman Shimai and I are going to light this branch on fire! We are going to visit all of the members and really help them to feel the fire of missionary work! I know that this is God's work. I know that as we involve the members, we will find and baptize people who will stay strong. I know that as we work with the members, we will see miracles.

I am so grateful for this Gospel! I am grateful for my Savior and for His sacrifice. I am grateful for Joseph Smith, and his willingness to go to God for answers. I am grateful for the Book of Mormon.

Thank you all for your love and support! Ganbarimasu!

Love, Crandall Shimai

Monday, June 8, 2015


Dearest Family, Friends, and Missionaries,

We had Tenkin Happyou today... Transfer calls! I was very surprised to hear that I am being transferred to Kisarazu! I thought for sure that I would be with Sakamoto Shimai again as I have been helping her prepare for an English test she will be taking in July. She will become Area Sempai here and will become companions with Gushiken Shimai, one of my douki from the MTC! I know that they will accomplish great things here. In the meantime, I am going from a ward of 300+ to a branch of about 30. It should be a different experience. I will transfer on Wednesday.

We met with our investigator named Sakura twice this last week! We had an appointment for Tuesday night, and she called us Tuesday evening to say she couldn't make it anymore. We were shocked when she offered to meet right then instead! We gave her a tour of the church, and she was super excited about the picture of Christ appearing to the Nephites. Sakura is half Colombian, so I think that has special meaning for her. Sakamoto Shimai was amazing and talked almost the entire time in Spanish!

We really wanted to show Hibiki chan the Restoration video, but she said that she couldn't come to the church, and we couldn't find it in Japanese on the iPad... so, we used the iPad to film it! We brought a blanket and sat outside her apartment and watched the Restoration. It was pretty sweet. I look forward for the day when Hibiki can be baptized.

Sakamoto Shimai and I have started doing surprise visits for members, and it seems to work out! We visited the Primary President, and she and her family were so excited to see missionaries at their house. They cleaned the house for us really quickly and then gathered around to listen to our message. We asked the parents to share some experiences from the missions, and we could tell that this wasn't the first time the children had heard these stories. Our ward mission leader had told us that most children in Japan never see their parents bear testimony of anything outside of church, but I feel that we proved him wrong.

I am so grateful for the roles of parents in family. Parents can fill their homes with light and truth. Parents can help their children learn and grow in a spiritual environment. I am so grateful for my parents who so lovingly raised me. I wouldn't be here without them.

Love, Crandall Shimai

PS: Shout out to my best friend Tori who is leaving on July 15th for the Tonga Nuku'alofa mission! I know that she will do great things!

PPS: How is the Family Proclamation coming along?

Tuesday, June 2, 2015


Dearest Family, Friends, and Missionaries,

My heart is full of love for Elder L. Tom Perry. When I learned that he passed away yesterday I was very surprised. He always seemed so genki, so perky all the time. I will miss his talks about happiness in the family. I reread his talk from conference this morning, and the last two paragraphs feel even more powerful to me, now. I can't help but notice that Elder Perry's final talk was about marriage. Of all the things he could have testified of, the Lord had him bear witness of the sanctity of marriage and the importance of family.

Not much has happened since my last P-Day. We met with Janet again on Friday (I believe I mentioned her in my last email). We usually meet at a rooftop park over the mall. It was raining on Friday, but she was still there and eager to hear our message. We shared about the Restoration with her, and we even invited her to be baptized. She said, "Well, to be baptized I need to start coming to church, huh?" She really understands the importance of baptism, and she wants to come to church. However, her husband is against religion, and she doesn't know if she will be able to come to church. We continue to pray for her daily so that her husband's heart will be softened.

On Sunday, the church leaders decided they wanted to start a Chinese class, and they wanted to start it that day! So, we gathered all of the Chinese investigators and our Chinese recent convert, Ning Kyoudai (he was baptized last week), and we taught a class in Chinese. Elder Higbee would teach in Japanese very simply, and then Ning Kyoudai would expound on that in Chinese. Ning's testimony truly is amazing, and I believe that it will really strengthen his wife, Mei's, testimony. She said that the class was really wakariyasui, and she seemed so full of light. I am excited for Ning Kyoudai to teach the entire lesson next week.

I love you all! I know that as we rely wholly on the Lord, our weaknesses will become strengths. He will always tell us where we can improve to become the kind of person He would have us become.

Love, Crandall Shimai