Wednesday, March 23, 2016


On September 9, 1957, Elder Robert Thomas Stout recorded this experience in his Missionary Journal.  Elder Stout and his companion were tracting that day in Matsumoto, Japan, when they came to the home of a Mr. Ogawa.

Elder Stout opened his visual aid kit to a picture of the Presidency of the Church, but the man instead noticed immediately another picture which Elder Stout had bought in Hawaii.  It was a post card picture of the Laie, Hawaii Temple from the air.

Mr. Ogawa turned pale and seemed shocked when he saw this picture.  Then he told the missionaries about his experience at the Temple.  He had flown a fighter bomber during the Pearl Harbor attack.

He said, "I had a very large bomb left after leaving the Pearl Harbor area, and I hoped to find a very special target for my bomb before returning to our carrier ship.  Then I saw this place (pointing to this aerial view picture of the Temple), and I was determined I would destroy that building.  I circled and dove, but my bomb would not fall.  I tried again and again, but SOME POWER STOPPED ME.

"Then I was so angered that I decided to dive and empty my machine guns, but I was really disgusted with my guns wouldn't shoot.  I FELT A STRANGE FEELING COME OVER ME.  I tried two more times, but the bomb would not fall and the guns would not shoot.

"I began to fear that I would run out of fuel, so I tried one desperate try, and I even thought I would suicide dive my plane into that building, but my controls would not work.  They were just stiff (or frozen), and I could not dive.


"Less than two minutes later when I was out over the sea, I dropped my bomb and shot my guns, but I had hit nothing.  I felt disgraced that I used my bomb for nothing, and I could not report my failure and strange story.  So since my plane was now operating perfectly I thought I would go back and try to empty my guns into that mysterious building with its magic power.

"But as I tried to turn around and go back, again my controls would not respond to my commands, and I felt a POWERFUL INFLUENCE, and I felt that I had angered a God."

The Missionaries told him that the reason he couldn't destroy the Temple was because it truly was THE HOUSE OF THE LORD.

He said, "It has a giant magic power that protects it.  You missionaries make me feel those feelings again.  You must leave me alone and not torment my mind and heart.  Please excuse me; I am very busy."

Elder Stout says he did not really understand that Mr. Ogawa had said when he met them at the door ("Mo kekko desu").  He thought it meant "come in," but found out later that it meant "No thanks." He was grateful he had not understood, or they would not have heard this marvelous testimony of how the Lord protects His Holy House.

Condensed from Elder Stout's Missionary Journal, by Marvel M. Young.

No comments:

Post a Comment