Kimi Yamada was eleven years old in 1907, and had attended the LDS missionaries’ Sunday School for a year and a half. She was not a member of the Church, and I do not find a record of her ever having been baptized.
The aunt with whom she lived told the missionaries that Kimi knelt in prayer every night and morning, and “is so earnest in her prayers that she will not say good morning or anything else to us before she says her prayers to God.”
Her letter to the Juvenile Instructor was translated by Elder Alma O. Taylor, who explained one part of Kimi’s letter by saying that the little girl had objected to a Methodist teacher’s denial that Joseph Smith had seen God. His diaries — available online at the BYU library — refer to Kimi’s participation in Sunday School, her singing with a small group of girls on special programs, and her glee at a Christmas party given by the elders.
I have been going to Sunday School since last year. But I am very sorry that neither my aunt nor mother ever go to Sunday School. Once I started to another church’s Sunday School, but the teacher said that Moses was the only man that had seen God, so I thought they must be wrong, and came back to the Latter-day Saints’ Sunday School.
I hope the Christmas Party this year will be a good one like it was last year, and that we can sing and pray and recite. It makes me happy to think of Christmas.
Your little Japanese friend,
Nov. 17, 1907