Monday, April 30, 2018


Welcome once again, peers and colleagues, wonderful to see you all here gathered together here on this beautiful pday.

I’ll let you guys who these two stunners are (check out the matching ties)
pics we took from our cute hike today (Beautiful Germany)

والله what did we do this week, hmmmm. We went on splits this week with E Blanchard Blanchard and Elder Dawson, which was good. I was up in the giant city of Hohenstein with Elder Dawson. Some noteworthy parts: We went finding and walked towards a place called the Sachsen ring, a very large motorcycle race track, in fact (could be actually fake news, someone fact check me) the largest in Germany. We also met a new friend from Afghanistan when we were finding. He didn’t have much time to talk, but I was able to explain a little bit about what we do, what the Book of Mormon is, and we gave him one in return for his contact info. As we were messaging this week, he said to me „Sorry, I can from you question ask?“ (meaning: excuse me, can I ask you a question), so I replied „Yes you can.“ (meaning: yes you can). He then asks me, „Why I book number read?“ (meaning: *I had no idea*), since this was a confusing question, he reworded it with his next text. „Why you want that I about church understand?“ (meaning: *you can figure it out*). I was a little afraid when he asked this, because it’s usually just his way of getting ready to roast us and say he is without interest to learn more, but I took the opportunity and told him about the greatness of this gospel and Book of Mormon and he was pleased with my answer. In fact he told me „Very comment of goodness is,“ (meaning: that is a great comment). Persian is a very weird language my friends.

Anyways, aside from the hours on hours of talking about baseball, we had one other pretty awesome highlight of our Tausch. We met with a family of their ward, whose dad went to Greece on his mission and I am happy to announce that I have finally met a former Greek missionary DID in fact go to jail on his mission. I have asked everyone I meet that went there, but was yet to succeed in finding one. Even though the story wasn’t as you’d think it would be, he was put in jail in Greece as a missionary, pretty crazy.

We have made a lot of Arabic/Persian/Turkish/German friends from Sport finding. We take our basketball and head over to a public basketball court, find some legends balling up, and challenge them to a pickup game. It’s actually quite effective. We were playing when some guys came up and started throwing an American football around and I asked them, „So do you gentlemen enjoy yourselves a bit of American football?“ They actually had just bought the ball yesterday and were just learning how to throw it, but they were pretty pumped when they found out we were from the birthplace of that sport and knew how to throw it right. We threw around with them for a bit, and then they challenged us to a 2v2 (I wanted to decline and go for the 1v1 on rust, but that wouldn’t work), and we beat them obviously.

Quick shout out to the Diamondbacks #all9series‘

Other than that, we met with another Persian friend to whom I taught the first lesson, which went pretty well. We had another couple lessons and we are meeting with an American this week we found in our contacts. We met some Americans in the store Galleria today, one from Virginia and the other from Prescott, AZ, so that was awesome. Go America.

Also the Turkish missionaries are getting kicked out of their mission again and being put into other missions so I wouldn’t be surprised if we receive some Turkish missionaries soon, but more to that next week I guess.

Hexenfeuer (witches burning)
The Walpurgisnacht (also witches burning) is a traditional Northern and Central European festival, partly with fire smoke on 30 April. The name derives from the sacred Walburga whose memorial day was celebrated until the Middle Ages on the day of their canonization on May 1. The Walpurgisnacht was the Vigilfe of the festival. As a "Dance in May", it has also found its way into private and commercial events as an urban, modern festival event on the eve of the May Day, because of the opportunity to dance and socialize.

Have fun this week and #GODBACKS #BeatLA

Elder Johnson
Ludwigstrasse 52
95028 Hof

Monday, April 23, 2018

April April, der macht, was er will

Shooooooooot man, how are my legends doing?

Well, not gonna lie to you, but we had quite a normal, unexciting week. You’ll have that every now and then. Let’s see some of the highlights though.

Me and my legend, Elder Wright

Well we left the mission this week. Before you try calling David A Bednar to get me sent home, we had permission, no worries. We have a member of our ward who lives in the Frankfurt Germany mission, but our church is closest to her so she comes to our ward, which gives us permission from President Fingerle to go minister to her. That was fun, I got to practice my almost fluent Italian that I learned from the legend Cralissa, including being able to say that her granddaughter is crazy. Elder Rasmussen was a big fan of her little granddaughter, almost in a weird way. We talked with her about the new ministering program and about the new changes we learned about in general conference, it was a good meeting for sure. Quite legendary was that she had 2 small dogs who were very friendly, I like friendly dogs.

Here’s a lowlight of the week. So we met a really solid Persian man a few weeks ago who was very interesting in reading the Book of Mormon. He gladly accepts the book, tell us he’ll read it, and would like to talk about it once he’s done reading it. Classic, we think, as this is a classic response from many people. We got his phone number, and talk to him every now and then to ask how his reading is coming, and he always said he’s reading a few pages every night and he’ll finish it soon. Well, he finished it this week (in only a few weeks) and being one of the very few investigators who actually reads the Book of Mormon, he ended up not liking it and not being interested to learn more, which was pretty sad. We’re working with him now to see what he didn’t like and how to find out if the book is really true or not.

On a much higher / hotter note, it’s getting really hot here. Not nearly as hot as the greatest city in the greatest state in the greatest country Mesa, Arizona, USA; but enough to get the Germans worried. Apparently this is the hottest it’s ever gotten this early in the summer in all recorded history. Not much I’m afraid of, I like the hot weather.

Other than those parts of my week and a few random ones I’m sure I’m forgetting, we had an alright week. Not too great but not too trash.

Have a warm week my friends

Elder Johnson
Ludwigstrasse 52
95028 Hof

Monday, April 16, 2018

Elder Rasband, the legend?

Moin boys and girls, nice to have you back.

I’m sure many of you are thinking, „When is he going to find a different way to open up his weekly emails?“ Let me tell you when. Probably never actually—they will always be weird to start.

ANYWAYS this week was crazy. We basically spent our week on trains and in different cities again, so that’s cool. I guess I’ll start off with the highlight of my week, I got to meet an amazing man. A man who taught me much, showed me how a legend lives his life, and is a great example. His name is Elder Payton Wright. Great man.

I’m just kidding, as most of you know, we had a very special meeting with Elder Rasband from the Quorum of the 12 Apostles this week, and it was really an awesome experience. Not just because of the life changing sack lunches we got after, but because we got to hear from an apostle of the Lord on how we can be better missionaries. But more from what he said later.

Where is this place? Never seen it before

We met with our golden investigator that is going to be baptized sometime in the unforeseeable future, and that was also good. He had a lot of deeper questions about Adam and Eve, which is really good that we had Arabic translation there. He said to the translator, „I’m not asking all these questions because I am doubting the things I’ve learned, but because I want to know everything so that I can teach my friends.“ How cool is that? I feel like we as members could be better at that, trying to learn as much as possible so that we can teach our friends and answer their questions.

Tausch (splits) Bavarian wursts

We were in Berlin 2 times this week. That means we made the 6.5 hour trip to Berlin 4 different times. On our way back after the first time (Zone conference) on Wednesday, our one train that could get us back to Hof in time fell out which meant we could get back to Hof at around 12AM but that’s a no no for missionaries. Instead we took the fastest alternative and went back with my legend Elder Wright and his comp to their area near ours, and slept over there again. We didn’t get home until 11PM but at least it wasn’t midnight, right? There’s been a lot of getting home late this week because of all this craziness in Berlin.

ZoKo legend meet up

Hamburg pic?

On our way to Berlin the second time I made about 15 new 12 year old girlfriends. They entered our train and sat near us talking being crazy until they realized we were speaking English and then we were the main attraction of that ride. (The girls probably thought they were in an American boy band, haha!) Once one of them pulled it together to speak to me, and found out we were Americans, they just lost all dignity and started talking over each other in their broken English and telling me all their connections to America, including one girl whose uncle lives in some city in Canada. The city didn’t matter though because it wasn’t Toronto and we all know any city in Canada that’s not Toronto is a waste of land 😉. It was pretty funny though. At one point I switched over to German as they were all staring at me and I hit them with a, „Wir sind keine Tiere meine Freunde,“ or for you lesser species who don’t speak German, „We aren’t animals my friends,“ and they had a good laugh at that one. Funny experience, I choked though and didn’t take a selfie with them. Next time.

checkpoint Charlie and crazy flag holding dude

Elder Rasmussen and me at the Reichstag building in Berlin

some az legends

pay close attention to our name tags (my mission goal of getting a Sister Johnson name tag has been fulfilled)

One thing that Elder Rasband shared that I found very deep, heartfelt, and profound, was when he was talking about President Fingerle being almost done with his mission and said the profound words, „Don’t get trunky, President Fingerle!“ Just kidding those weren’t the most profound things I heard from him, but they were pretty funny ones. 

He recounted a story of when he had heard the news of President Monson‘s passing, and knew it was going to be time soon to set apart President Nelson as the new prophet of God. He knew it was always the most experienced apostle/President of the Quorum of the 12 that would be the next prophet, but he needed to get the spiritual confirmation that this was God‘s will. He prayed and fasted for a long time and received his confirmation as they all had to put their hands on President Nelson’s head in the upper room of the temple, and President Oaks said the words, „Russel Marion Nelson...,“ he got his confirmation and knew this was God’s next prophet.

our small little mission, aww

He then invited us all to receive this confirmation for ourselves, which I think many of us have lacked to have done. He promised that with this spiritual confirmation, our testimony will be strengthened so much when we say the words, „I know President Russel M. Nelson is a Prophet of God.“ So try it, will ya?

Anyways, overall pretty good week besides a few blaspheming, but it’s all good.

See you all next week I guess bye

Elder Johnson
Ludwigstrasse 52
95028 Hof

Monday, April 9, 2018

Know Yourself

Hallo leuteeeee, wie geht es diiirrrrrrrr

Ay lit, we had a good week. Started it off quite strong with exchanges with the legend himself, Elder Payton Morris Wright, also known as one of the only legends to be able to drop 300 at LDs. We had a great time, did some good work, and I took a few Ls at a bakery we went to. So I went in to this bakery hoping to get me a Schokobrötchen, a tasty bread thing with chocolate in it. So I go up to the lady, ask all nice and polite, „I would like one Schokobrötchen please,“ just to get the reply of, „DAS HABEN WIR GAR NICHT“ (we do not have that at all), okay, L number one, no Problem. Well I wasn’t mentally prepared for such an answer so now I have to find something tasty from this place while the lady is waiting for my choice, so I see a donut. „Alright sick, I’ll take this white donut,“ and get the reply, „Das ist KEIN Donut, das ist ein .....“ (that’s not a Donut, that’s a.....) and I forgot the word for it right after she said what it was. L number two. „Oh man, another L“ I say as I’m being thrown L after L from this very particular old German lady. I finally made my decision, „Alrighty, I’ll take the thing that looks like a donut then.“ „Den ......?“ she asked. „Of course,“ I told her. I don’t think she was very fond of my lack of knowledge of pastry names. The important thing is the donut thing tasted exactly like a donut and was really tasty. I’m not sure how much importance this story had to your eternal salvation but I felt like I should share it because Elder Wright and I were dying afterwards.

6️⃣ upside down it’s a 9️⃣ now

Hmm, we had a pretty good lesson with a Persian friend of ours and his Arabic friends. That was real fun. The girl made us some real tasty Arabic food, some delicious Mate (basically hot water put in grass with lots of sugar, Elder Rasmussen’s favorite), and we had a good time. She brought two other of her Arabic friends who were quite interested in what we do. They recommended we play a game where they have us say a hard Arabic word and we have them say a hard English word which was fun. I stumped them with a good antidisestablishmentarianism and Rasmussen hit them with a young supercalifragalisticexpialidocious, to which their jaws hit the floor. But they got us with a few weird hard ones so it was fun all around.

Speaking of words - I’m not sure why they used mei instead of my, but I’m considering adding it to my collection of funny English mistakes on printed out things from Germany

Ayyyy what’s also pretty cool is that last week we got a new friend of the Farsi language to whom we taught the first lesson and gave a Book of Mormon. He seemed quite interested and it was dope. Well he’s out of town right now, but we have been texting him and apparently he reads a few pages every night and really enjoys that book. How legendary is that? Hopefully we can meet with him sometime this week that’d be dope.

we visited this cool rock mine thing. Got to skip some good rocks like the good old days

My Persian skills are really being put to test down here without a comp who can speak it well I’m all on my own, but it’s helped, and I think I’m making some good progress.

Cool news, so turns out we’re going to Berlin 2 times this week. Once for zone conference with half the mission which will be cool, and the second time to have a special conference with Elder Rasband from the Quorum of the 12! That’ll be sick, I’m super pumped.

I also found out that today is my 6 month left mark! How crazy is that haha. Time flies man, but it’s fun out here.

We had district pday today and balled and grilled so that was chill. Too bad I didn’t have the former Elder Kevin Oliver Hillyard to destroy all of those noobs with me in volleyball.

district pdayyyyyyyyy
double fetching rainbow
monsoon season?
In front of the huge church that’s right next to our church that’s in an office building... 

welp anyways, see ya

Elder Johnson
Ludwigstrasse 52
95028 Hof

Monday, April 2, 2018

Georg's Long awaited baptism

Hello my friends

The great news you’ve all been waiting for, Georg got baptized finally! It was an awesome experience that we had all been waiting for for a very long time. So, let’s talk about my good friend, Georg Kosytorz. This ~75 year old man had searched his entire life for the true church, but never felt perfectly happy in one of the many religions he tried. He was baptized as a child but didn’t feel that church had the whole truth. He walked by our church building many times, not knowing what time we started church services (even though there’s a giant sign), although he would very much like to learn about our beliefs. Well, one day, he was walking somewhere and saw some paper on the ground, picks it up, and it turns out to be a card from our church explaining when our church starts every week! He came that Sunday, met and visited with the elders, and started learning more about our religion. Every single thing we taught him, he accepted without second question. He learned the doctrine of Christ and took everything he learned upon himself and exercised true faith in Jesus Christ. He reads more than 1 hour each day in the holy scriptures, and he has read many extra materials from the church, and loves everything he learns and wants to keep learning more.

my legend

We came across a few (like 100) problems as we were preparing for him to be baptized. One of those involved him having to get married, which is not easy to do in Germany, to say the least. He had many hard struggles trying to make everything work out so he could follow Jesus Christ’s example and be baptized. He is truly a huge example to me, how freely he accepts the things he learns and really practices his faith. Last week, I was blessed with the opportunity to participate in his wedding, and that awesome time spent with him and his wife. This week, I was able to baptize him and help him come closer to Christ.

It was a Long Trip up to Hamburg for his baptism, but it was worth every minute. It seemed as if it would have a big chance for something to go wrong and make the baptism not happen, but it all worked perfectly. It was an awesome experience that I’ll never forget. It was also great to see the ward members again and to see their great support for this wonderful brother, Georg Kosytorz. No better day to have his baptism than the day before Easter.

Denny boy (nice European suit!)

Matching ties!

throwback to the great mtc days

Well, the rest of our week was good, not much comparable to the baptism except General Conference was awesome. Lots of changes—should be interesting. I hope we all can take something with us out of the talks.

Bye friends

Elder Johnson
Ludwigstrasse 52
95028 Hof

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