Monday, December 12, 2011

It's a Small World

A Big Temple in Taiwan

Taiwan Dragon Statue and Me
Hello Everyone,

How are all ya'll doin today?  Life here in my new area is awesome.  This week I felt like I was back home in Centerville with you during the giant wind storm.  Here in HengChun, during the winter time, the wind gets really crazy and we have only experienced a little bit of it so far.  Last week I sent a package home, so be expecting that soon.  I received Grandma's package, but I still haven't received your packages yet mom... So I learned quite a bit more from my companion this week.  Turns out that he knows the Seljiaas family, as you mentioned, and knows quite a few of my soccer buddies.  He also mentioned that he worked with Anthony and Kyle at Bailey's and told me some good stories. My companions parents names are Robert and R'Lee Field.  He said they'll be in Arizona this month, so I don't know how you would get in touch with them mom.  Maybe cell phone??  Anyway, this week has been pretty good.  Oh, also Happy Birthday to Aunt Anneli and my cousin, India. 
So last Monday I got all settled into my new area.  Traveling was a pain, so hopefully I stay down here in HengChun for a while.  We just visited a few ward members and recent converts to let them get to know me.
Tuesday felt like Monday all over again.  We had District Training Meeting, but it was in a completely different area.  So we took an 1 1/2 bus ride to DTM, learned about how we can better work with the ward members in our missionary work, and then took an 1 1/2 bus ride home.  Took up a lot of our proselyting time, but thats just how it is.  We then met with an 8 year old who is a recent convert.  I don't know where this kid gets his energy, but it just never runs out.  We sat down and reviewed the Restoration with him and his sister who is also a member.
Wednesday we biked to one of our extra areas to visit with a less-active, Wang dixiong.  We sat down and really focused on him Keeping the Sabbath day Holy.  He has had problems coming to church in the past because of his work, but he found a new job which allows him to come to church now.  He then took us to meet a few of his friends and to share the gospel with them.  They didn't really seem that interested to meet with us, but this less-active got really excited and wanted us to keep visiting with his friends.  Came back to our area and did a bit of tracting until English class. 
Thursday we sat down with another less-active, Gao dixiong.  He also has had problems coming to church because of work, but he is now the manager, so he should easily be able to get it off.  We began by talking about the Book of Mormon, and it was so awesome to see that he noticed the pride cycle that goes throughout the entire book pretty much.  I didn't even notice that my first time reading through.  He is so good!  We then sat down with another less-active who has two sons, both around Landon's age.  We focused on the Sabbath day as well and he felt that coming to church was important and told us why we go to church, but when we invited him to start coming back he told us he wouldn't.  He pretty much bore his testimony to use, but has no desire to progress at all.  We will still continue to work with him and strengthen his testimony. 
Friday we began by having our Weekly Planning session and then sitting down with a part-member family.  This family is from Hong Kong and so the speak both Mandarin and Cantonese.  As we read the scriptures, I asked them to to read in Cantonese, just so I could hear how it sounds, and it surprised my that I was able to understand most of it.  Crazy!  We just focused on how reading and praying can help us develop our relationship with God.  We then sat with a former investigator and reviewed the Restoration with him. 
Saturday was another full day of visiting less-active members, recent converts, and trying to find new investigators.  I don't remember all of their names quite yet, but I'm working my best at that. 
That pretty much sums up this past week.  My new companion and I have been getting along pretty well and I love this new area so far.  I'm loving this time here as a missionary and only have a little bit left.  7 months have gone by CRAZY fast and these next several will only go by faster.  I love you all, and I hope you enjoy the package I sent!  Take care!

Love Elder Smith