Sunday, August 18, 2013

Week 21/ Week 13 Cambodia: Land of MOTOS WATCH OUT!!!!

Sunday, August 18, 2013 8:51 PM

Dear Family and Friends,

So in case you couldn't guess by the title there are so many motos here. Probably 80% of the traffic is motos and motorcycles. You should see what they can fit on them. I need to take more pictures of them. Some moto drivers are really good...and some are really bad. Like the one that hit me :D. Haha yes I got hit by a moto. I was crossing a street I had enough room to cross. I was just watching one car to make sure it slowed down from me. And from the other direction a moto hit right into my front tire. I flew off my bike but miraculously landed on my feet then stumbled to the ground. The biker saw he hit a white person and kept going hahaha. I was fine. Nothing was hurt except a bag of flower and my basket on my bike. It was thrilling :D.

Before I get too far I want to thank Uncle Neil for the wonderful email. It was so nice to get it. I think Singapore has about the same temperature as Cambodia right now actually. So we both got it really hot. And Aunt Karen thank you so much for the package with the Provo tie clip and twinkies. I didn't have a tie clip of the temple till now and the twinkies :D SO GOOD!!! Thank you!

This week was interesting to say the least. On Tuesday we had Zone conference and President came to teach us. We focused on helping the members grow stronger and help them invite others to church. I especially loved his talk about the Atonement and the Sacrament. We can use the power of the Atonement everyday but we need to renew the power of remission of our sins and that is by taking the Sacrament every week. We offer our sins every week at the feet of Christ as our sacrificial lamb. The Sacrament helps us prepare for the Temple and the laws and covenants found within. It is such an important, eternal ordinance. I know it and I testify that we can become clean through the power of the Atonement by taking the Sacrament. I loved it.

We taught a few lessons this week and contacted a lot. I am becoming so comfortable contacting. Some days it is still really hard but a lot of the time I don't have much of a problem just talking to people. My comprehension still isn't high but I am comfortable at trying.

So this week Elder Noot got a new trainee and I got a new companion :D. He is Khmae and his name is Elder Vout. He is 26 years old and comes from Kompung Thom, the heart of Cambodia. He is awesome and has the missionary spirit. He also knows how to cook! I have eaten rice for pretty much all but one of my meals since he came but I'm excited to eat good food. Having a tripanionship is hard. It is difficult to teach but we are still learning. I will learn a lot from it.

So about contacting. Contacting questions is really different from Stateside missions. Here in Cambodia typical questions consist of: How many kids do you have? Where do you live? When are you usually home? And so I have come to realize that missionaries are stalkers in a sense. I am sure if we asked these questions in other places we would probably get the police called on us :). But Cambodians don't care so we do.

Well, that's all folks. Until next time may God hold you in the palms of His hands.

Elder Johnson

Elder Noot and Elder Workman (Vietnamese speaking)
Vietnamese Sisters and Elder Tien (Vietnamese)
Scones and Potato Soup night!!!
 Our tripanionship with Elder Vout

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Week 20/ Week 12 - Cambodia: Land of Miracles

Sunday, August 11, 2013 8:52 PM

Yes it truly is the land of miracles, but I think that is how every mission is. The Lord is hastening His work.

So fun little things that happened this week: we played basketball!!!!!, had a branch FHE which was so fun and SO much food, got the new Khmae version of the Bible (with tabs!!!), got to see one of our less actives be called as the Young Men's 1st counselor (he is so active now :D), and got soaking wet WHILE wearing my raincoat from Mr. Macs :). Haha I think the rain in Cambodia has some coat piercing magic or something :). Oh haha Elder Noot and I also blew money and went to an Indian restaurant called Shakti Shiba (or something close to it, with a name like that who wouldn't wanna go?). Boy was it delicious :D.

One day at the church I did hear a piano and violin duet. It was a Khmae and an International member playing Praise to the Man. Boy was it heavenly just because there is very little music here in Cambodia...well that's not true. There is music but it is very traditional and noisy and weird. Really hard to understand and they just blast it. But I got to hear wonderful music. I was so happy :). Sometimes I just decide to sing while riding my bike and I don't care who's listening because I like music and Cambodians are just awkward people so singing will biking isn't to bad :).

So to the miracles. This week we got several new investigators. One of them happens to have been a referral who we actually have met several times. Before we even got the referral I actually played him in Chinese chess. He destroyed me twice in a row but it was fun. He looks JUST like Mr Miyagy (Miyagi...IDK the spelling). His name is I Kong (how you would pronounce it in English is Ee Gohng). He is wonderful. We also had several other investigators come to church. It was wonderful.

Yesterday, was Sok Eang's baptism. It was super spiritual and wonderful. I had the privilege of performing the baptism. It felt so nice to wear all white (unfortunately I did forget my white tie at the apartment :P). I think I did a pretty good job, I only had to repeat the prayer once! Haha, but it was really spiritual. I know that the Lord loves Sok Eang and is happy that she has covenanted to follow Him. I know that we are bringing Salvation to His children. I felt so warm, peaceful, and happy the rest of the day and still today I feel it :).

Finally, we had transfer calls last night. President Moon is so spiritual and goes by revelation so transfers are always a surprise. This transfer: Elder Noot is staying in our area, he is a District Leader, and is training again. As for me........ I am staying with Elder Noot in our area!!! We are to be a tri-panionship!!! It is really exciting. Elder Noot says that there have only been like 2 tri-panionships during his year here and there has NEVER been a trainer and trainee stay together for 3 transfers in his time here. I am SUPER HAPPY!!! Elder Noot is my best friend on the mission and we are doing WORK here in Cbarumpou (in English it is jbaa- um- boh).

We had many miracles this week and I am eternally grateful for them. Until next week may God hold you in the palm of His hands.

Elder Johnson

P.S. A shout out to my little brother who isn't so little anymore but still my brother!!! I LOVE YOU!!! Helaman 11:19, Alma 56: 47-48

SCONES!!!! Patrick Star is now a scone!!!

Look what Elder Noot and I drew on the wall!!! LOTR!!!!

The day of coat-penetrating-rain.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Week 19/ Week 11 Cambodia: Kingdom of Wonders (that really is the nickname of Cambodia)

Sunday, August 4, 2013 8:50 PM

Another Email from the Kingdom of Wonders. Weather report: hot and humid with lots of clouds and a 90% chance of showers later tonight. Time: 9:30 am local. Drink of the day: Coke (or beer if you are not a member).

Each week it feels like we have a lot of appointments cancel or not show up but at the end of the week I feel blessed for what we did do. It is a wonderful feeling to know that you were committed to bringing the gospel to others even though lots of things fell through.

Even though things fall through we are having success. This upcoming Sunday we have our first scheduled baptism. Her name is Sok Aang (yes all you Avatar fans it is pronounced the same :)). She has been a golden investigator. Her husband who already is a member wanted her to join and she has been committed since the first lesson. She really is so wonderful and we are so excited for her.

Now for you who believe that being in a hot, humid area will help you keep your weight down, let me tell you: haha nope. Eating rice for most of your meals doesn't help you lose weight. I totally thought that I would have no problem losing weight and would have to worry about being to skinny. The only skinny people here are the ones who have had a bacteria infection and throw up a lot. Most other people have the beer bellies. Haha.

So Elder Noot and I are the teachers for the beginning English class we teach every Wednesday night. This past week we had an awesome gospel lesson (the class is 1 hr of English and 30 minutes of gospel lesson). For gospel lesson I had Rothana (a 22 year old young man) come up and help us be an example for us. I used him as an example as a person who got into some trouble. Every time he did something wrong in the story I smeared peanut butter on his face to say that he wasn't clean anymore. He needed to repent to get clean. It was a great lesson. (I got this idea from my grandma who did this on my face for one FHE a couple years ago :)).

We contacted lots of people this week and have a few good potential

investigators. I am starting to be able to understand a lot more now but some days it is just really hard. It is a very cool language.

I did have an awesome dream this past week that was really cool. I pretty much was Nephi in the book of Helaman preaching to the people to repent from his garden tower. Only I was on a fountain instead and preaching to a market. I did say though "Oh ye wicked and abominable people, repent!" Haha thought it was really cool :).

Well that is about all I got for this week. I know that this is where I need to be right now. I love this work. The field really is ripe for harvest. The Savior loves each of us and I know that He Lives. May God hold you all in the palm of his hand.

Elder Johnson


Me with lotus flowers behind me and my awesome helmet!!!

Beautiful Lotus Flower 

Elder Noot riding through the jungles of Cambodia :D
THE HORN OF GONDOR!!!! Boromir!!!

A cute puppy of a member
Me in the jungles of Cambodia :)