Thursday, August 27, 2015

P stands for Packing!

Today P-day means packing day...and pants day...and preparation day... just go with it. 

Some of the Shimaitachi in my district with our matching shirts!
So I leave for Japan on Monday!!! When I got my flight plans I screamed like a small child.. seriously though! I am so excited! We're so fancy, you already know, we're flying from LA to Tokyo! :)

Funny Highlights: On Sunday I taught the Japanese Sister "lame" on accident. They say it all the time not but they say it super dramatic and slow because I had to say it super slow for them to hear it. So they say "ohhhh laaaameeee" It's so cute!

I don't have a lot of funny highlights this week because we're just been getting ready to go to Japan.. Sorry I guess I'm lame.. ;) 

Missionary selfie! 
So I forgot to mention this but every Sunday everyone has to prepare a talk for Sacrament Meeting because you never know who's speaking. They literally call you out on the spot to come up and speak. So guess who got called. Yeah Zollinger Shimai. I thought I was going to pass out. But I did it! I actually gave a talk in Sacrament Meeting in Japanese. The craziest thing was I was allowed to read my scripture in English and I could not get the words out properly. It was crazy! I guess that means I'm ready to go to Japan now! This Sunday the Japanese Sisters sat next to me during choir and asked me what every word in the song meant. And somehow I was able to translate it in my broken Japanese. I know I'm not perfect, but Heavenly Father always provides a way! I cannot even begin to describe how excited I am to go. Nine week of learning about this amazing place is over and now it's go time. I'm going to hit the ground running and I cannot wait. I know it's going to be hard, but I can do hard things through Christ! Nippon here I come!!

Sorry I didn't have much time to write this week, got to go pack! I love you all! 



PS. Mom I'm singing in Sacrament Meeting on Sunday! It's an arrangement of 'If You Could High to Kolob. Don't worry I'm keeping my promises! ;)

Nashville Tribute Band picture! The lead singer is the one in the middle without a nametag!

Thursday, August 20, 2015



How is everyone doing?? Cool me too! So this week have been nuts! I get my flight plans tomorrow! I'm literally losing my mind! However everyday I learn something new, everyday is a spirit bomb to the face and a reminder why I'm still in the MTC. Heavenly Father is so much smarter than me!

Funny Highlights: (I hope you like my funny highlights, sorry if they're lame everything is funnier in the MTC) So first off one of my Teachers is Japanese. The other day we asked him if he had to learn the American alphabet and if it was hard. He said he had to learn it in Kindergarten but they taught him a song to help him remember so he started singing the ABC's. Our other teacher looked over at him like why are you singing that and he looked at her and said, "you know that song too!?!" She just said, "yeah.." and everyone started laughing. It was so great! 
Yesterday we got Japanese Sisters in our branch! I was talking to them and one of the other girl in my district was wearing a shirt with the Facebook cat stamps. So the Japanese Sisters got so excited and asked where it was from and I said, "it's right next to the emojis isn't it". They were like "American's have emojis!?!" It was so cute! They kept calling me "steki" which means handsome, cute, fashionable stuff like that. 
One of my companions mom made all her skirts and I joked with her to have her make me one. Then last week she got a package and I was messing around saying it was my skirt and it actually was! So awesome!
They also said my Japanese was great, but in Japan that means your Japanese is terrible...So I have a lot of work to do.. Also my eye just randomly started twitching a few weeks ago. I have no idea why but the other day we were eating dinner and one of my companions saw it twitch and started freaking out. I would say it's annoying but it's super funny when people see it twitch. I was walking in the cafeteria the other day and this lady yelled at me and said "Hey I really like your hair, I would trade my left pinky for that hair." So I looked back at her and with a straight face said "Okay, I wouldn't mind having two pinkys" and then I walked away. I LOVE THE MTC!!

If you haven't guessed already from the subject of my email the Nashville Tribute Band came and did a devotional on Sunday.(Mom remember that CD you bought me for Christmas, the one with my favorite songs? It was them!) Yeah that's right first time something like that has ever been done in the MTC and I was here. See I knew I didn't need to leave last week :) It was the coolest thing ever. The spirit in the room was so powerful! My companions and I like to sing in the MTC choir. Because it's a music group we got to sing a few of their songs with them. It was so powerful. I want to share a few lines from some of their songs. Look them up they're so cool! 
Before they started the song they said to all the missionaries, "you are part of a millennial army that has been fighting before Christ was born." Then at the beginning of the song they had the missionaries that were from other countries come down and tell where they were born in the native tongue. It was crazy how many different countries were represented. The part that the missionaries sang was the coolest. We sang, "We are here to serve our King. Children of the most High. It's his good news that we bring. As we labor gladly bringing souls to Christ." The song is called, I Was Born. I love it so much. That song hit me so hard though. Gospel means Good News. Here I am laboring, gladly, bringing souls to Christ. There is no better work on this earth that could be done. At the end the lead singer said, "One day every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is the Christ, are you excited?" The knowledge I have that Christ is my Savior is something I hold so dear. I am excited for that day! When all of my Brothers and Sisters will know who their Savior is. That he is the reason we can return to live with our Father in Heaven again. Can't you just imagine how amazing that day will be? What makes it even better is that in Japan there are people that have never heard of God and Jesus Christ. I will get to be the one that introduces them to their Beloved Big Brother. I get to teach them how to pray to their Heavenly Father. I get to share this Good News. Pretty cool stuff. 
You know you've been in the MTC for 8 weeks when you start to do your hair in the "King and I" buns... Just prepping myself for sumo wrestlers!

I only have one week left in the MTC so if anyone wants to send me a letter or package or anything before I leave the country I wouldn't be upset.. ;) 



Thursday, August 13, 2015

Who wears matching shoes anymore???


My companions and I had a english fast this week. Which means we didn't speak any english all day. Hardest thing ever but it was so cool! I know way more than I thought I did, except I had to look up like every other word in the dictionary.. It was super fun! 

Funny Highlights: On Monday my Senpai left. (The sister missionaries that got to the MTC before I did) So all the other girls in my zone blew up baloons to send them off with. Since they were all leaving at different times we had to wake up at 4:40 and 5:40 to send them off. In the comotion of trying to get out the door before they left I almost forgot to put on my shoes so I ran back and slid them on. We were standing in the stair case when one of the sisters looked at me and said Sister Zollinger, did you know you're wearing two different shoes. I don't think it would have been as funny if it wasn't 4:40 in the morning and the fact that the shoes were totally different. yeah I was tired.
Sunday night we get to watch movies after the devo. This Sunday my companions and I went and watched the Testaments. Seriously the best movie of all time! Watch it! In the movie though two of the main characters share a kiss and every companionship in the room covered their companions eyes, Funniest thing ever! #missionayprobs
My companions and I started practicing our kneeling last week. Liteatlly the hardest thing I've ever done in my life. In Japan it's costumary to kneel for 15 minutes unless the host tells you otherwise. So we've been practicing for 15 minutes everyday. The other night it hurt so bad I started sweating. We look so silly kneeling there squirming around. But I am pleased to say I can successfully kneel for 10 mintues before it feels like my legs are about to fall off. I won't even meantion what it;s like to walk after though. By the time I'm in Japan though I'll be a pro!
Yesterday we got our Nihongo nametags!!! They're so legit!!!
MY NIHONGO NAMETAG!!!! It says Zoringa Shimai

This week has been the best week of my whole mission. I feel like I say that every week but it's so true. Something always happens to make it great. Everyday I learn something new. Everyday I draw a little closer to my Savior and learn more about his Atonement and every thing he did for us. Last night we got to skype Nihongin and teach them a lesson. My companions and I got to skype Taguchi! He's the coolest Brother ever! I think he taught us more than we taught him! He has such an amazing testimony and a hunger for learning. We asked him what he wants to learn and he said everything. He wants to fully understand the Atonement and what it does for him. What an amazing man. I want to have a hunger for learning like him and a desire to serve like he does. He thinks about the Savior more in one hour than I do in a day. What a powerful testimony!
Then one of the sisters that left came in and shared her conversion story with my district. She bore the simplest most powerful testimony of our Savior. She really knows who he is and what he does for us. How did I get to be so blessed to be called on this mission. To teach these people and be in God's Army with this people. Heavenly Father is so much smarter than us. He knows exactly where we need to be and when we need to be there. He will send us wherever we are needed. I know this to be true more than anything. Last week there were so many cases where I was in the right place at the right time and said what I needed to say and lift someone's spirit. I love my Heavenly Father, my Savior, and the Holy Ghost. They are my best friends and always watcing out for me. Whenever I'm down they send someone to pick me up and when someone else is down they send me to the rescue. There is no greater a feeling then when you respond to a prompting or when someone responds to a prompting on your behalf. This church is true minason!
I got to be a new missionary host again!! It was so fun. It's my favortie thing to do, well everything about being a missionary is my favorite thing to do but this is pretty cool!

Thanks for all the letters and emails, you're the best ever! I'm praying for you all everyday! 



Sunday, August 9, 2015

Apostle say what!?

こんにちわみな損 <-- Look what I learned how to do!!! :)

How is everyone? This week has been so crazy but awesome! So the other day I had a realization. I'm going to the "coolest" mission in Japan. Literally it's the coldest. So now no Japanese missionaries can argue with me about the better mission because it's fact, mine is the "coolest"!

Typical map picture - 3 more weeks!
Funny Highlights: There were so many funny moments this week it was hard to choose the best ones. So I hope you like the ones I picked. The other day one of the elders in my district had this orange. He tossed it to one of the other elders who missed it and it hit one of my companions right in the face and exploded juice all over her. Later that same day we were in the computer lab and that same companion looked over at us and said "Sisters I have a problem" I looked at her and discovered she had some how managed to get her finger stuck in a disinfectant wipe container.. It was a rough day for her. Then later that night we were putting bars on the sides of my bed so I don't fall off (I sleep on the top bunk in the middle of the room) and my mattress starts to fall on the floor. We ran to catch in but we were too late the the impact of the fall launched my belonging all over the floor. It was a very interesting day. A few days ago we were translating questions in class. My teacher asked me to translate 'Pray in order to know whether or not Thomas S. Monson is a prophet'. In Japanese the word for 'truth' and the word for 'death' are very similar. Lets just say I mix words up a lot... 

You're never going to guess who came to speak at the MTC! On Sunday Sherri Dew came to speak. Yeah that's right Mom be jealous. She was so cool! She told us all these awesome stories. I would tell you them but time is short. What I really what to talk about is the Tuesday Devotional. Guess who came? Did you guess, yeah it was an apostle. It just so happened to be Russell M. Nelson. It was his first address as President of the Quorum of the Twelve. You know how every talk Ucdorf gives he throws something in about planes. So we were sitting there and Elder Nelson was talking about having the Gospel of Jesus Christ engraved in your hearts and all of sudden he says, "I've got my initials on a lot of hearts". (says the retired heart surgeon) It was so funny. My favorite thing he talked about though was that people in the world think that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a Utah based church. But it's not. It is a heaven based church. If it was a Utah based church Heavenly Messengers would not have visited Joseph Smith in New York. It was so great. Such a powerful night. I know that we have prophets and apostles that lead and guide us today. The truthfulness of that was evident when Elder Nelson stepped into that room. Not a word was said by man. But the power of the Holy Ghost flowed through each of us. I know they are called of God for each and every one of us. I was called by a prophet of God. There is no mistake in that, it wasn't just some random thing that happened. But an even approached by prayer. I love the knowledge I have of that. It lifts me farther than I have ever gone before. The prophets and apostles love us so much. Right before he left he blew us all a kiss and said if he could he would shake each and ever one of our hands. Then as he was leaving he stopped and walked back inside as this little old lady comes from the crowd. He shook her hand and then left. I don't know who she was but I know Elder Nelson was inspired for whatever reason to go back to her and the spirit filled the room as everyone witness this happen. They really love us all so much I promise you of that. 

I love you all like crazy. I wish I could tell you everything I'm learning but I can't so I hope this is enough. 

Shout out to the coolest oldest brother ever. I love you a lot Mark. I'm super proud of you! Go make me proud, remember who you are, and never give up!

I got a haircut and decided to let my hair go all natural..yeah I know it's cute.
PS ignore my spelling I don't even remember what English is anymore...
editors note: I fixed the spelling in this one - Dad