Mailing Address:

Elder Jarron McKay Molen
Japan Tokyo South Mission
1-7-7 Kichijoji, Higashi-cho
Musashino-shi, Tokyo
180-0002 JAPAN

Thursday, July 30, 2015

January 30, 2015

Thanks for sending my stuff.  I smelled a tree today.  It smells like cream soda. Nobody knows why but like all the tall pine trees at the MTC smell like cream soda. Thanks for the advice Dad. I will continue to do those things.

My roommates and I are hilarious especially this little elder from Chihuahua. He is the funniest little guy ever.

I am fairly good at speaking I feel like. My companion is struggling a bit but he's doing pretty well and getting stuff memorized.

Steven and I just stare at each other for like 10 seconds whenever we see each other and it's pretty funny.

We get to go to the temple today and I'm really excited because I can get out of this box.  I can really feel the spirit here and it's awesome. I like talking in Japanese it's fun. 

Mom, how was the firework battle? I heard and saw some but again I was stuck in dis box.  Even though our hearts are supposed to be "on the shelf" guys still totally talk about what sisters are cute and stuff.

I saw Trevor come in yesterday.  That was awesome. I know a lot of people here.  It's pretty cool. I like the ties you bought me. Some of them have special shiny squares on them.

I just wanna go to Japan so bad still! I need my yaki soba and ramen. I can't wait until I get there.

My sensei's name is Shimbashi and he's totally awesome and he is funny. We say 'JUST DO IT' a lot, also 'Nothing is impossible, Don't let your dreams be dreams,' and 'You're not gonna stop there.'  So that's pretty dope.

Well guys, I love and sorta miss you guys ;D, and I will report back next Thursday."

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

July 27, 2015

"Too much food. I have to cut down on how much I eat cause they feed me way too much.  I see Steven a lot and we joke around. Teaching our first "investigator" is so hard to do in all Japanese but it's moving along.

Dad, I'm glad you love gluten free mowing.

I want to get to Japan so bad! I like all the elders I'm with and they are super fun.  Joel Battaglia and I are in the same room, and he is district leader right now. It's fun and I'm doing my best. I love you guys!"  

Saturday, July 25, 2015

July 25, 2015 P-Day is Thursday

Elder Molen sent his first e-mail. With one day behind his belt, he didn't have much to say, but
he sounds happy.   



"They have a lot of food. My P-Day is Thursday and I'll e-mail you guys.
Love you, your son."
For those who don't know what "P-Day" is, it's short for "preparation day." Missionaries have one day of the week set aside for preparatory activities such as housecleaning, shopping, laundry, letter-writing, reading e-mails, and some recreation.  They look forward to P-day and reading e-mails and letters from friends and family.  We like them too.  We look forward to hearing about his week.

Elder Molen's Favorite Scripture - Isaiah 41: 10
"Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness." 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

July 22, 2015 - Do You Hear What I Hear?

It always seems that when you're doing the right thing, the adversary does everything he can to stop you or discourage you. Today went something like this:

Adversary:  Your new watch just broke.

Heavenly Father:  No problem, your mom bought two watches.

Adversary:  Your ear tube has fallen out, you have fluid in your ear and -- oh, is it hurting?

Heavenly Father:  No problem. Dad will check your ear and see that the tube is lying in your ear canal.  

Adversary:  Good luck with that.  Your Dad called the MTC.  They may need to delay taking you to the MTC until it's fixed.    

Heavenly Father:  Not going to happen.  Your mom is calling your ENT doc.  He's a return missionary himself.  Did I mention he does a lot of humanitarian work?

Adversary:  It's already noon.  You're supposed to be at the MTC at 1:30.  He won't be able to fit you in.  Besides, he'll be at lunch.  You'll get his voicemail.  What a shame.

Heavenly Father:  It'll be just fine.  They'll put you on hold for a moment.  Be patient.  

Adversary:  You'll be on hold forever.  You're losing valuable time. (insert evil laugh)

Heavenly Father:  Imagine that, the doctor's 12 o'clock patient just cancelled and they can see you right now.  Load your bags.  You're going straight from the doctor's office to the MTC.

Adversary:  Ha!  It's  1:10 and you're just leaving his office.  You are definitely going to be late now.  

Heavenly Father:  Stop worrying.   They called the MTC while you were getting the procedure done.  There's a small leeway you didn't know about.   We don't advertise it. You've got it made!  

Score:   Adversary       Heavenly Father
                 zero                     Six

Explaining Elder Molen's ears wasn't in the plan for today's blog -- or was it?   Either way, it's a good time to ask for some extra prayers in his behalf.  He has tubes in both ears because of what they believe are genetically smaller eustachian tubes.  Because of this, his ears don't pressurize properly.  Both of his eardrums retracted, preventing sound from bouncing off, and that affected his ability to hear.  Yep, there were times he wasn't ignoring you. 

Without tubes, an airplane flight or drive up the mountain gives him serious ringing and pain.  So does swimming, swallowing and yawning.

His hearing was so bad at one point that after getting tubes in for the 2nd time at 13, he announced to me that he didn't realize how loud the sound was when you flushed a toilet. 

Putting tubes in his ears allowed his eardrums to go back to their normal shape, fluid to clear -- stopping ear infections -- and his ears to pressurize the way they should.  It's likely he will have these tubes the rest of his life, but there is a slight possibility that his ears could improve if he still has some growing to do.  

Aside from this minor issue, Elder Molen has great health.  He's always been tough ever since he was little -- hence the reason he has tubes put in without anesthesia.  He said it is VERY uncomfortable.  Today was no exception because this time they cut through more scar tissue from the previous burst and tubes.  His ear will probably annoy him for a few days/weeks.  It goes away as they heal and pressurize.

So if you wouldn't mind asking in your prayers that Elder Molen's ear heals quickly, we'd really appreciate it.

He's taken two years of Japanese in high school, but he's going to need his hearing to learn as much as he can before he leaves for Japan.

He had a wonderful blessing last night as he was set apart as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

He arrived at the MTC feeling confident and happy and ready to take on the world.  He will be in the MTC for about two months before leaving for Japan.

Elder Molen would appreciate your prayers and encouragement, letters and e-mails. 

I'm waiting to find out his specific MTC mailing address but until then:

Elder Jarron McKay Molen
Provo Missionary Training Center
Japan Tokyo South Mission
2005 N 900 East
Provo, UT 84604
United States


Sunday, July 5, 2015

Opening the LDS Mission Call

     Jarron received his call May 4, 2015.  By 9 pm our house was filled with the most amazing group of friends and family there to support him. Jarron's grandparents joined in by speakerphone as he opened the letter. 

     In a few months, he will officially be "Elder Molen." He enters the MTC on July 22, 2015, to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ to those in the Japan, Tokyo South Mission.

Did you know?
1. Raw horse meat is a popular food in Japan.
2. On average there are around 1,500 earthquakes every year in Japan.

3. Sometimes the trains are so crowded railway staff are employed to cram passengers inside.

    Photo found at:

4. The term karaoke means "empty orchestra" in Japanese.
5. More than 70% of Japan consists of mountains, including more than 200 volcanoes, 60 of which are active. Mt. Fuji, the tallest mountain in Japan, is an active volcano.
6. Late night dancing is illegal in Japan.  They are currently in the process of trying to overturn the ban.
7. Religion does not play a big role in the lives of most Japanese.  Christmas is celebrated by most Japanese as a lover's holiday like Valentine's.
8. Japan has the second-lowest homicide rate in the world, .50 per 100,000 people.
9. There are four different writing systems in Japan; Romaji, Katakana, Hiragana, and Kanji.

10.  In Japan, snowmen are made of two large snowballs, not three.

11.  Ōkunoshima, Japan is an island full of rabbits.  Hunting is not allowed and dogs and cats are not permitted on the island.
12. Sumo wrestling is Japan's national sport, but more spectators watch baseball.
13. Japan consists of over 6,800 islands.
14. In 1997, 685 kids in Japan were rushed to hospitals after an intense Pokémon episode that caused dizziness, vomiting and seizures.
15. When you use the restroom in someone's   home you may need to put on designated bathroom slippers so as not to contaminate the rest of the home.
16. Noodles are slurped somewhat loudly when eaten. It has been said slurping indicates the food is delicious.  The slurping also serves to cool down the hot noodles for eating.

17. Farmers grow square watermelons because they are easier to stack and store.

18. In Japan, there are more pets than children.
19. Japan has 5.52 million vending machines.
20. Sleeping on the job is acceptable in Japan as it is viewed as exhaust from working hard.
21. In Japan it is not uncommon to eat rice at every meal, including breakfast.
22. Average life expectancy in Japan is one of the highest in the world. Japanese people live an average of 4 years longer than Americans.
23. Japan is the largest automobile producer in the world.
24. It is considered inappropriate to blow your nose in public.
25. Tsukiji market in Tokyo is the world's largest fish market.
26. Most toilets in Japan have a built-in bidet system for spraying your backside.  However, in some train stations and other public restrooms you may still find the traditional Japanese "floor toilet."

27. Japan has cafes where people can play with puppies and kittens.
29. In Japan there is a train that floats above the tracks by magnetism.
30. Due to gases produced by power plants, Japan sometimes suffers from acid rain
34. Raised floors help indicate when to take off shoes or slippers. At the entrance to a home in Japan, the floor will usually be raised about 6 inches indicating you should take off your shoes and put on slippers. If the house has a tatami mat room its floor may be rasied 1-2 inches indicating you should take off your slippers.
35. Ramen noodles are a popular food in Japan and it is widely believed extensive training is required to make a delicious soup broth.

36. It takes about 7-10 years of intensive training to become a fugu (blowfish) chef. Some fish farms in Japan are now producing non-poisonous fugu.

37. Ovens are not nearly as commonplace as rice cookers in Japanese households.
38. In Japan, there's a 'Crying Sumo' contest' where wrestlers compete to see who can make a baby bawl first.
39. Crooked teeth are considered attractive. This belief is so deep seated that girls usually go to the dentist to have their teeth un-straightened.
40.Squid is the most popular pizza topping.
41. Some Japanese companies conduct a morning exercise session for the workers to prepare them for the day's work.
42. In Japan non-smoking areas are difficult to find in restaurants, including family restaurants. Many of Japan's politicians have interest in the tobacco industry and anti-smoking laws are almost non-existent.
43. Many companies hire people to hand out small packages of tissues which include a small advertisement flyer.  Some non-Japanese are surprised when they are handed a free package of tissues.
44. Most streets in Japan have no name.
45. Japanese families often use the same water for bathing.
46.The Japanese have a tradition of going to KFC during Christmas.
47. It is considered rude to say “no” to someone directly in Japan.
48. Tearing off a gift wrapping is considered impolite in Japan.
49. It is considered rude to walk while you are eating in Japan.
50. Bus drivers in Japan usually turn off their vehicles at red lights to reduce pollution.
51. In addition to a "boneless smile", small eyes, a round puffy face, and plump body were considered attractive features, especially during the Heian period.


52. It was customary in ancient Japan for women to blacken their teeth with dye as white teeth were considered ugly. This practice persisted until the late 1800's.  The American style smile (big, wide, and white) would have been seen as "exposing too much bone."

53. Police in Japan usually carry around paint balls to shoot at fleeing motorists. This allows them to identify them more easily.