Elders Samuel Suzuki and Devon Wolsleger were serving their separate Missions in Japan for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Then Covid 19 hit.

They continued to serve in their separate Missions in lockdown mode then ultimately both Elders had to return to their own homes.

Each Elder made their personal choice to continue serving a Mission “wherever & whenever they were called to serve.”

Surprisingly each were called to serve in the Tennessee, Nashville Mission and are now serving as companions!

According to Elder Suzuki, serving with Elder Wolsleger has made “all the difference” in moving forward.

Elder Suzuki’s Mother is Katherine Ballantyne Suzuki who grew up in the Arlington Ward.  Elder Wolsleger’s Mother is Jenny Winters Wolsleger, who grew up in the Mt. Rubidoux Ward.

Both Katherine & Jenny attended Ramona HS together.

Katherine was good friends with Jenny’s sister Carrie Winters.  Carrie was a powerful influence for good in Katherine’s life.

Elder Suzuki’s Grandfather Misaki Suzuki joined the Church as a young man in the Sendai area of Japan.  Although Misaki’s family was not happy about his choice to join the Church he continued on with his choice.

Elder Suzuki’s call to serve in Japan has come full circle which was started by his Grandfather so many years ago.

Despite the initial disappointment about a change in call Elder Suzuki has been willing to stay the course, and answer Heavenly Father’s call to serve wherever and however the call required, as has Elder Wolsleger.

These two Elders have set examples on how to press forward & make the best of your current circumstances that are out of your control.  We thank them both for their willingness to serve no matter what that looks like!