December 22, 2013
All right everyone, Merry Christmas! Let me first say that I’m sorry to Parker and Payson. They should’ve seen it coming though! I mean I have been telling everyone for the 19 months I’ve been a missionary how bad my memory with names is. This is just one small example of it! (In Kyle’s last email he talked about Parker being released from the hospital and what a miraculous outcome it was and it was really Payson that had been sick. Both are nephews that were born while he has been gone so maybe we should cut him some slack.) But kinda big at the same time. It’s going to be on the record forever dang it. That’s embarrassing. But oh well. It’s not as embarrassing as mom and Staci running around the mall singing songs… that will always be embarrassing. (At Christmas time Staci puts on her elf hat and I put on my Santa hat and we spend some of our shopping time skipping around the mall singing Christmas carols. Who knew Kyle would be embarrassed by that kind of thing?) This is just a slight mix-up.
Well this week was a good week for us! We are just so busy lately! This transfer our district meets all the way in Ma On Shan which is a good 40 minute bus ride. Getting there is such a hassle! And it was SO COLD this week! I think the average temperature was about 8 degrees in the morning?! Yeah, and then add the rain and wind on that it does not make for fun finding or waiting for the bus. And then you know, no houses in Hong Kong (that missionaries live in) have heaters and so the cold tile just makes it extra fun. But it was good! On Tuesday the Stake President invited us over for lunch with Shakira (yes that is really her name) and it was a fun ole time except it was about 8°C. They were amazed I would even just go outside with just my suit jacket on! Ha-ha speaking of which.. . if Utah is so cold and snows all the time, then why are the missionaries from places like that such wimps? They need so much to make them feel okay! I mean I’m cold but I don’t go putting on a sweater, my suit jacket, a jacket, a raincoat, and a scarf to keep myself warm!! Every missionary is doing that here! Except me…just because finding is truly affected it by it! And it’s not like I’ll lose some toes or fingers. I finally used my big raincoat for the first time because it was raining and we had a lot of finding to do and no sun. That doesn’t make for a good combo. But even then I could’ve toughened it out. Things are going well here nevertheless.
I have to tell you an interesting story this week. So we teach English class and Kira usually comes to that and so we can teach her after. Well this week was especially important because she had to get finished teaching before her baptismal interview. Well right before we left the apartment she texted us saying she probably wouldn’t be able to come most likely (it’s a rough translation) and that was that! But I said, “Hey there is still hope she will come!! I mean she has to come!” But everyone in the apartment was saying that I was fool and they were all like ganging up to the fact that she wasn’t going to come. However instead of settling for defeat, I just knew she was going to come! And then fast forward 3-4 hours more, no inspiring news, but then as English class is starting here comes Kira! She is just walking up to go to English class! It was so awesome! Anyways the moral of the story, the Lord will get His things done and we just have to always just know that the blessings will come. Even if they (the blessings) have said tried to make it clear they are not coming.
Speaking of Kira she is all set to go for a Christmas/Birthday baptism! The whole ward is excited about it and many people said they would for sure come. I’m amazed every week by this ward. I mean this week the Stake President had her over to his house where they talked for about 3-4 hours. The correlator is helping her with her family and job situation (she doesn’t have one and so he is trying to help her.) The bishop spent an hour with her yesterday; the ward members are getting involved in every single way etc. and she is really feeling the Spirit right now. She has invited her mom to the baptism (even though for these past 3 weeks she refused to) along with her friends. Today she organized a gingerbread making activity with the Young Women and Relief Society and now even the bishop! It’s amazing when everyone gets involved in something! The recipient can’t help but to join in on all the fun. That is what is happening here.
Speaking of our ward correlator, Brother Chan is just superman. I have come to that knowledge. He (his picture is in my call packet if you want to know what he looks like) scheduled one of his “friends” for us to meet. (Brother Chan was the mission president of the China, Hong Kong Mission when Kyle was called to serve there. By the time Kyle arrived in the mission field however, President Val Hawks, his current mission president, had replaced him.) I say “friends” because he basically has met her once. Well she didn’t show up to the appointment we had at one of the complexes here. He shrugged it off, took his ward list out of his bag and said, “Ah, I was afraid this might happen so I took the liberty of filling out information on all the less actives that I know living in this complex. Let’s go visit them and invite them to the Christmas party.” He then got out his Book of Mormon and Restoration pamphlet and we were off! We talked to three families that he knew. The last one invited us to meet their whole family. He was the bishop (I think) at the time of their baptism 10+ years ago when the dad, mom, oldest daughter, and son all got baptized. They immediately went less active and their daughter, who had her 17th birthday this week, never got baptized. Well we visited them, talked with the whole family and realized their gospel interest is still quite low so we invited them to English Class. The next day the brother and the non-member daughter showed up! They called us and had no idea where the chapel was. We asked where they were and they said a place about 10 minutes running distance away. They said they were just going to go home cause they spent all this time and still couldn’t find the church. Well we took off and tried to find them as fast as we could! They said not to bother because they were going home, but we found them just in the nick of time. They came and we taught them after class. It will be a slow process with them, but they want to come.
Besides that, our new investigator John is doing well. We shared the Plan of Salvation this week and he already knew it all. Apparently he has more knowledge of the gospel than we thought. He was going to come to church, but he had other things to do. That’s too bad, but he did mention how if he gained a testimony of Joseph Smith, he will get baptized. His date is firmer now so things are looking good.
Besides that, I bit my lip in the middle of the night this week (it was probably a nightmare about ASU losing). It hasn’t gotten better and in fact it got worse. It is so big right now that it is hard to eat anything and brush my teeth or even like close my mouth ha-ha but I’ll survive! That’s just a small update. I will call home at 10:30 Christmas Day here. Staci’s phone. I love you all! Can’t wait to talk to you!