The Brethren

The Brethren

Monday, July 27, 2015

New Area - Sapaan Sung

สวัดีครับผมมมมมม!!! Sorry everyone, I've been off the charts for some time now..
My last entry was quite a long time ago.. I'm starting to receive emails asking if I was still around... SOOO yes, I'm still around!! and I'm absolutely loving my mission!

I'M FINALLY WITH A THAI COMP!!! There are 5 Thai Elders in the mission (an all-time low) out of about 140 Elders.. so I feel honored to be companions with him! His name is Elder Kandun from Udorn (Northeastern part of Thailand) He's going to die (Finish his 2 years) in October, so he's on madman mode when it comes to work. He's honestly one of the most consecrated missionaries I've had the opportunity to work with. He doesn't care about anything but to glory our Father in Heaven. Just in the short 2 weeks that him and I have been comps, I've learned so much on how to become a better missionary.

So I only have one entry for today. This is from a little while ago...

Btw.. Elder Holland is visiting us on August 15th!! 

7/15 - God's Mysterious Ways

From what we learn in the scriptures, God works in mysterious ways that can be difficult for us to understand at times. 

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord" - Isaiah 55:8

Today, we were contacting by the biggest market in our part of the city. It honestly isn't the most pleasing experience at times because many people that live here belong to other faiths - especially the Islamic and Buddhist faith. On a regular day, we contact on the busy streets for about 3 to 4 hours a day. I personally like contacting, because that's where most of our baptisms come from... but it honestly is challenging at times. 

So anyway, we were inviting... and it was a difficult day for my companion and I. We've had a tough week... The people who were teaching weren't progressing as we hoped they would be. We were trying our best to find the elect.. However, even that wasn't going as we wanted it to be.

It came to the point where I walked over to a street corner, and despite all of the busy noise around me, I offered a prayer. I let my Father in Heaven know that things weren't going as we hoped to be. We're missionaries! We carry the message of truth. The Gospel blesses and changes lives... We can help them... We're right in front of their faces inviting them... But these people were still choosing to reject our message... It wasn't a prayer of complaint, but I asked for help. I asked for the elect to receive our message. I ended the prayer.. still feeling pretty heavy inside.. and continued inviting everyone on the street.

It was when I took a few more steps.. when I heard a familiar song that a nearby music store was playing out loud. If I'm correct, I think the song is called Stronger by Kelly Clarkson... I was in the middle of inviting someone when the chorus echoed through my ears.

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger
Stand a little taller

and so on.. I don't quite remember the rest...

I've never really knew the song before my mission, but just that one sentence made me dumbstruck... It was as if God was encouraging me through a way that seemed so silly... 

Was it mere coincidence... Was it just by chance that that particular song was being played in a country in Southeast Asia? It can be argued so.. But when I heard that part of the song... I instantly received so much energy from inside of me to keep working. 

God works in mysterious, and sometimes even in weird ways. This experience is a testimony to me that God is on my side. He isn't going to let everything go smoothly by leading me to only those who are ready to receive the Gospel... But He leads to me all of them who needs to receive the chance to hear about the Gospel. It would be such an easy thing for Him to lead me to only those who will accept our message, and be baptized.. but what good will that do.. In that moment, I received a special witness that I have work to do... Inviting from then on has never been the same. I testify that the elect to respond to the message. 

Currently, we have quite a few people set up to be baptized on the 9th of August

From my mission, one thing I've learned is that a mission is a time where you do the things you are told to. We know that obedience is the first law of Heaven. Whether you baptize or not, it doesn't matter. A mission is a time where you are told to serve Him with everything you got. He will provide a way, we have the joy in working for Him.

I witness that God lives. He works in these weird and mysterious ways that many will say that they are silly and foolish. But... it works :) I've been blessed so much by the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and I only want to share that happiness with all who will heed to His message.

I love missionary work. I testify that God knows each and every one of us. He cares for our happiness. The things we hope for may be insignificant at times, but He does grant it unto them if it is righteousness. 
I'm starting to have feelings that I don't really want to go home after my mission. A life as a missionary is pretty awesome. I love it.

Love you all,

Elder Takeuchi

Sunday, May 31, 2015


This transfer has been crazy!!!! Henceforth, the title "บ้าบัพติศมา" 
บ้า = Crazy
บัพติศทา = Baptism

These two transfers that I spent in Samuts was amazing!! Miracles after miracles.. after miracles.... I've loved all of my areas... but this area still surprises me with the many miracles that have been happening.. Just a few moments ago, I received "the transfers call" notifying me that I'll be leaving this Thursday... Truly heartbreaking because I love this area soooooo much... the members... the people that the Lord provided me with to teach and serve.. all of them. I love em all. In this area, I was blessed to help many people to the waters of baptism!

It's all about the Grandmas!! - 10/5/2015

This is the story of Grandma Sunee (75) She lives by herself in a small apartment, and runs a little nursery program for the neighborhood kids. She's been a faithful member of another faith for about five years. Her story is just simply amazing. One day, a neighbor gave her an inviting card from our church.. That neighbor was invited by Elders sometime ago.. but wasn't interested.. so gave the card to her because she was Christian.. When Grandma Sunee received the card, she had a powerful impression to attend church there. She already belonged to a church... but she described it as the "Guidance from the Holy Spirit". She called the number that was on the card. I answered on the other end. We made an appointment to meet, to allow us to introduce to her the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Although she may be old, her learning went quite smooth. She understood the principles well, and had a baptismal date for the following month. However, the adversary wasn't going to let her go that easily. Her old church began to visit her, and tell false doctrine about the Mormon Church, even spitting harsh words to her that she will surely go to hell for joining such an abominable church. As a 75-year old grandma, such words frightened her a lot. There was about a week that she avoided our phone calls. After much prayer, we finally visited her, and asked her to share her feelings. After doing so, we counseled her to pray. We counseled her to ask the Everlasting God who knows all things to reveal the truth unto her. Members that went with us also testified of the truth. It was a powerful lesson that I won't be able to forget.

Two days later, she called us back, with joyful new that she'll be baptized. I almost broke in tears. We have been praying and fasting for her. God has done it once again... Another incredible miracle. The old church still visits her, and tries to make her go back to her old faith... However, she now has courage.. courage to stand for what's right. Heavenly Father gave her a testimony of truth, and she knows it. I love her so much. I wish I can have such faith as hers one day. 

"20 years as an Investigator" - 24/5/2015

After investigating the church for a little over a month.. ซ. เพชร tells me, "Elder, I'll tell you a secret" And she goes on to tell me her story of investigating the church..

"Did you know... I first met the Elders 20 years ago, back when I was still in college. They invited me learn about Christianity. I was Buddhist since birth, but I was interested in this "Jesus". The Elders visited and taught me the teachings of Christ. After a few lessons, they invited me to be baptized! Through learning, I knew all of this was true. I wanted to be baptized.. I knew it was the right thing to do... but I was scared. Scared because my parents were strict Buddhists, especially my dad. There was no way I could tell my parents that I was going to be Christian.. So one day, I told the Elders that I wasn't interested anymore... A terrible lie.. but I didn't want to waste those Elders' time..

Time had gone by.. I finished school.. Got married.. began working... Then one day a co-worker told me about a free English class at a church. I never connected the two points together until I actually went with a friend, and saw that Elders from that same church were the ones running the program. I was astonished... When you Elders asked me if I was interested in learning the Gospel, I agreed.. I understood that it was a sign from God. Through learning the Gospel again, I wish I was baptized 20 years ago... I see the fire in your determination. Honestly, if I had the chance, I would love to be a full-time missionary like you Elders. If only I was baptized 20 years ago....  But it's so amazing and wonderful to see that Heavenly Father provided a way so I can come back to this path. I have a testimony that God wants me to be baptized."

During her time as an investigator, she finished reading Preach My Gospel and Gospel Principles.She's currently reading the Book of Mormon like a storm.It's just crazy. She was truly prepared by the Lord. 

Sister เพชร was baptized yesterday by Brother สุรัตน์. The Lord knows who He wants in His church. I am just happy to have a part in His work. I'm also grateful for those Elders that worked with her 20 years ago. If only I can contact those Elders, and let them know the news.

This transfer, our district had 10 baptisms!! My companionship had 6, and the other Elders had 4. It was just so incredible to witness this craziness in the work... I love it. I absolutely love it. It really hurts me that I have to leave this area... I love this work so much. I testify that Heavenly Father lives. His tender mercies are upon all of us. Even in the hardest days, I can feel His love. I see the change in these people's lives. I simply love it. I testify that Jesus is the Christ. Missionary work is just awesoooome!!!!

Love you all!!

- เอ็ลเดอร์ ทาเตอุชิ

Monday, April 6, 2015

The Wave

My heart is full this morning... for those who have watched General Conference.. you know what I'm talking about...

This morning, the Zone Leaders called us around 5am.. informing us that PRESIDENT MONSON ANNOUNCED FOR THAILAND TO HAVE A TEMPLE!!

We were struck... We couldn't help but get on our knees and thank our Father in Heaven for granting us this miracle. Despite how much I love Conference... I remember how devastated I was last conference when President Monson announced that the church won't be announcing plans of building any new Temples until the ones currently in construction are finished. Dang, I love continued revelation!! :) For my awesome non-LDS friends, I added some links that'll explain what I'm talking about...

So this morning.. I had some time to review my last year as a representative of Christ... All the contacting, teaching, testifying...all the efforts... it all was worth it. Visiting less-actives with members, conducting Family History firesides, speaking in front of schools and congregations, being rejected when inviting off the streets, testifying to those who are withering in faith, praying for more faith, searching for deeper understanding, pleading for miracles...All of it... it was all worth it. The prayers of the faithful members were answered. There are so many names of the passed that are just waiting... waiting for their Thai descendants to take their names to the Holy Temple of God. 

This is just purely amazing...

Without a doubt, this past year was the hardest year of my life. But I can also say that it was the most rewarding and faith-building year of my life. I love being a missionary. I know Christ lives... I am a witness, and I cannot deny of it. His work is pressing forward like a giant wave. It's powerful, and it's got the momentum. With the new announcement of the Temple, it will only get bigger and stronger. I am so grateful to be here. Our Mission President, Pres. Senior talked about this era being the new era! Never has missionary work been carried out in such a pace as it is right now. I think about the people that I've taught... who are preparing themselves to serve missions. They're the light of Thailand. 

There's so much more to do now that we'll be having a Temple in the next 2 or 3 years. There are seriously so much more to do now. I absolutely love it.

Love you all

Elder Takeuchi

What are Temples?

What is Continued Revelation?

Glorious moment of the Announcement!! (2:30)

Friday, April 3, 2015

New Area - สมุทรปราการ!!

Friends, family, fellow missionaries..  I miss you guys all!!
Short entry, with a lot of photos today :)
Love you all!

One of my goals - 3/30/15

As missionaries, we have to write to the Mission President every week on P-Day, also known as Preparation Day. It's a day when we do our shopping, cleaning, emailing with family/friends, and touring if possible. This is an excerpt from my email to President Senior today. I felt that it expresses my thoughts and desires pretty clearly. President Senior will be released from his service this upcoming July. The man was revolutionary for the work in Thailand. I love him, and I usually don't write much in the weekly emails, but I took some time to write him a few thoughts..
Actually, I'll just copy+paste because we have to leave the internet cafe already. Today, we're going to visit some "vampire bats" as explained by the members here... and playing with monkeys by the beach!

President Senior,

Thank you for the training!! Here are my thoughts from this past week
Because He Lives Initiative

- Inviting... we're focusing on Christ more than ever... I absolutely love it.- Pumping up the members, even investigators by teaching and testifying of His Atonement and Resurrection!! 
Balanced Districts- Seriously President, this new district unity deal is so much better than before. I'm looking forward for the results that it'll produce
How are the members here doing?- Many of the members are going to the Temple next week, so they're making sure their family history work is all set! - Lack of priesthood holders creates a challenge for us to teach female investigators... (Especially worried after July when B. Thay leaves for his mission) We're even calling in members from Chonburi to help us teach investigators in their homes because we're desperate for priesthood holders..) but, we've also seen that the Lord prepares a way every time!

So from our interview from Zone Conference... there was one thing that I wasn't able to share with you. I hope I can clearly explain my feelings here... It was just too difficult for me to share it then. 
So... I just hit my one year mark not too long ago... and I constantly try to ponder to myself... "Am I doing everything that the Lord wants me to do?" On the front page of my PMG, I have a list of things that I expect to be fulfilled by the time I finish my ministry in Thailand.
For example, I would like godly characteristics such as charity and love.. incorporated into my character. I want to look back and be able to say to myself (and the Lord), that I have no regrets.. that I did my best. So I have this list... and I reflect upon it frequently as a reminder for me as a missionary.
There's one thing in particular that I'd like to share with you today. During transfer meetings, you always have a segment for the จบing missionaries. You talk about each one, and share a thought or experience or two. Then at the end, you quote the Lord, and when you quote that sentence.. it just gets me every time. Matthew 25:21 "Well done, thou good and faithful servant" In essence, when you say that short sentence to those honorable missionaries, I see you representing the Lord.
Even typing this gets to my tear ducts... Whenever I hear you say this to the finishing missionaries, I think to myself... "After my ministry is over in Thailand, will the Lord be able to say this to me?" This is one of my personal goals... President, to have the Lord be able to say that to me after my ministry in Thailand. I can't explain how special I hold this goal. 
I really want to do my best. I really want to do to everything so that He can tell me, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant."

Much Mahalos, 
Elder Takeuchi

Did I also mention that I was transferred into a new area? I'm in the province south of Bangkok, called Samut Prakaan. It's right next to the beach, and it really reminds me of my greenie area because how small the ward is. We also congregate in a 4-story rental building. This will be my fourth area, and I absolutely love it. (For Thailand missionaries, I have escaped the Bangkok once again!!) Escaping the Bangkok refers to not serving in a Bangkok although about half of the branches and wards belong it Bangkok. To which, I'm happy. I prefer the country :) So anyway, there's sooooo much work to do here in Samuts!
I love being a missionary. I've never been so passionate about missionary work until I came out in the field. I testify that Christ lives. We owe everything to Him. During this easter season, I'm so grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Have everyone seen the new video yet? I heard that the church bought the front page of youtube for Easter Sunday.

Elder Takeuchi

Because He Lives
Thai version

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

"I'm going to be a trainer!"

วันที่ผมอ่อนแอทางจิตใจที่สุดในชีวิต - 1/13/2015

"On the day that I was suffering the most spiritually ever in my life... a young man walked up to me and asked, "Would you like to go to church?"" 

This is how Brother Thee began to bear his testimony at his Baptismal service... He continued..."Looking back now... I would have never thought that I would become a Christian... 
God never really had a part in my life... until I noticed that He actually did. I'm grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ that gave me answers to questions that were never answered before."

I met Brother Thee at Big C (Thailand's version of Wal-Mart) on Friday, the 19th of December. I remember it was a long day as we street contacted for most of the day. I had just moved into Sisaket, and there were no investigators that were preparing themselves to be baptized. He was the only contact I received that day... and was so surprised to see him at church when Sunday rolled around. Through the discussions, Elder Mitchell and I were amazed by his deep interest to learn everything that he can about the Gospel. He was baptized yesterday, by President Gidjaa. 

Update 1/26 - Brother Thee is the man! He is helping our investigators so much in teaching ,and being their best friend. He has already become an indispensable member of the Sisaket Branch!

I'm TRAINING!!!! - 1/22/2015

So... President called this morning... wants Elder Mitchell and I to be in Bangkok first thing in the morning... BECAUSE I'LL BE TRAINING!!! 
I just can't express how long I've been waiting to train! I'm almost about to hit my year mark as a missionary (about 10 months in country), and I wanted to train before my trainer died (finish his mission). Btw, I love my trainer!!

Update 1/26 - My trainee's name is Elder Gawin...  He's full Thai, but he was half-raised in Orem, UT.. so his English is fluent!
The only thing is that... he still hasn't come into country.. He got stuck with his visas... therefore couldn't leave the US... I'll be seeing him TOMORROW!!!

BAPTISM!! - 1/25/2015

Sister Fon was baptized today!! So this is a good time to explain a little bit of how we find people to be baptized... Everyday, we go out to the streets, shopping centers, parks, everywhere that we find people... we go up to everyone, and ask them if they are interested in going to church, being baptized... whatever the Spirit prompts us to say in behalf of Christ Himself... While Elder Mitchell and I were contacting one day, she approached us, to learn about what Christ taught.. She later explained to us that she really wasn't so familiar with Christianity... however, she had a prompting to talk to us, and look at her now.. BAPTIZED!! *Follow the promptings of the Spirit!! :)

She comes from a difficult background, and it sure wasn't an easy task for her to be baptized. However, her testimony in Christ is powerful, and I'm grateful that I was part of her conversion story. There is no greater feeling than to see the change in someone's life through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As President Senior says, "The harvest is His... We have the joy of working for Him." 

I love being a missionary. I love it. I love speaking Thai, eating Thai food, I love the Thai people. I love the branch that I am serving in so much. I've loved every area (only on my third one so far), and it's been going amazing! This is truly God's Army, and I appreciate my families and friends for supporting me :)

Serving a mission is the best. Huge shout out to Ipo!! for he's about to enter the mission field in SAMOA!! Go kill em with Isaiah! 

I love you all, and I am so sorry that I suck at returning letters! Please shew me thy tender mercy by shooting me an email so I can at least email you back :)

Elder Takeuchi
Thailand Bangkok Mission 
1645/6 New Phetchburi Road
Makkasan. Ratchathewi
Bangkok 10400