We also made a trip to the Mikunigoaka church in the Sakai zone for interviews. Below is a picture of the district standing in front of the church with Sister McIntyre. The church used to be a fire station. The big garage doors on the left are where the fire engines would pull in and park. They make a nice place for our van now though.
What would the week be without finding an inexpensive all you can eat restaurant with the missionaries. In Mikunigoaka, the district took us to a nice shabu shabu place for lunch and they showed us how much they could eat. It seems they really look forward to doing this once a month or so when we come. The missionaries live on a very conservative budget, but seem to save enough for a meal out as a district once in while.This past week we also made another trip to the Fukuchiyama branch. Here is a picture of the little church in a building we have rented out. We also took another picture of the Fukuchiyama Castle on the way home.
We have made Fukuchiyama a small zone consiting of two districts and 10 missionaries. It includes 4 small branches in the beautiful mountains between Kobe and the Sea of Japan.
Our week was topped off with a great Stake Conference in the Osaka Kita (North) Stake. The Stake President, President Kido, presided at the conference and he asked both Sister McIntyre and I to speak and participate in the two days of meetings. The theme of the conference was "becoming the light of the world" or "let your light shine." The main focus was on sharing the gospel so it was a wonderful missionary focused two days. On Saturday, I was asked to speak in the adult session as well as meet with President Kido and all the bishops and ward mission leaders in a priesthood leadership meeting. On Sunday both Sister McIntyre and I spoke in the main session and Ricky and James also attended with us. We are grateful to the stake presidency and all those others who treated us so kindly. We were given flowers to wear and provided with delicious meals between meetings. The missionary spirit is strong in this stake and we are seeing great blessings in each of the wards. Special thanks to Sister Kido and Tanaka for the meals and Presidents Kido, Matsubara and Tanaka of the stake presidency. Next time we need to take a picture with them!
Tomorrow Elder and Sister Evans arrive to start a mission tour which will consist of two combined zone conferences held on Tuesday and Wednesday. We are looking forward to being trained by a General Authority of the church.