The island is a wonderful place! I really love serving here, it is a very busy place with tons of people, and it is a ton of fun! Elder Garcia is fun to serve with, he is growing a lot, his language is picking up which is fun to see, he is a good missionary with great potential. The Wan Chai branch is progressing well, it is very small, so there are lots of opportunities to serve, playing piano for hymns, teaching lessons, giving talks, blessing and passing sacrament etc. It is great to be able to do so much for them, I really love the members. The members all have a good attitude for the new branch, and Heavenly Father is sending his people our way! Just this Sunday, a guy and his gf from Shang Hai came into the church and loved it! After the meetings they asked us lots of questions, and have good desire to learn. They would make great additions to our branch! Our Branch president is a great man, very spiritual and has great love for the branch. He has been in it basically since the beginning of its founding, he knows many of the members and trusts us a lot. The branch is about to start growing like crazy!
Last week was a great week! We had the opportunity to go to the temple on Thursday, which is always a great experience!
I learned some new things this time around, as I do overtime. As always I am grateful for the peace, and raising of perspective that happens overtime I enter the Lords house and am taught by Him. I really love the temple! It is so nice to just go in and focus on the most important things. While I was in there and reading the scriptures I just felt a strong desire to have more faith in Jesus Christ and big desire to be learn more of Him, study who he is, and to increase my faith in Him. I was pondering about the many great missionaries in the Book of Mormon, like Alma, Amulek, Nephi etc and was wondering what the difference is between them, and us, and how they were able to do so much good for the Lord. And it seemed so clear one of the biggest differences (among many) is faith. They had unshakable, unwavering faith that drove them to sacrifice so much, and work so hard. And because of their faith, they were blessed with more faith! I love the words in Helaman to Alma
"4 - Blessed are thou, Nephi, for those things which thou hast done; for I have beheld how thou hast with unwearingness declared the word, which I have given unto thee, unto this people. And thou has not feared them, and hast not sougth thine own life, but hast sought my will, and to keep my commandments.
5 - And now, because thou hast done this with such unwearingness, behold, I will bless thee forever; and I will make thee mighty in word and in deed..."
I can only work and hope that one day, he would say the same to me as I seek to increase my faith, belief, and serve Him. I love President Monson's example of being on the Lord's errand, and as a result has become more and more like him throughout a lifetime of being in His service. I am filled with desire to be the same! In all my dealings with members, missionaries and myself, I think it is easy to see and feel those who have great faith. They are always filled with light, uplift those around, and do much good. I hope to always increase my faith, and help others to do likewise. The world could do with may more people with a solid and dynamic faith.
Fun surprising miracle of the week, I just learned today from Elder Sargent that they baptized a little boy from our English class that we did together back when I was in Sham Shui Po ward, I remember talking about him back then and he was only 7 years old. Crazy it has been almost a year since then and he has been baptized! I remember we found him when I was with Elder Hui, Elder Hui was getting his haircut, and so was the little boy, so I talked to his mom who was sitting next to us. She had no interest in church, but was excited about the children's english class. And now, almost a year later, her son Ken was baptized and they are all attending church every week as a family. Amazing! We really never know what happens with those seeds that are planted, I am so blessed to see some of them come to fruition!! I am so happy that he got baptized, he is a great little kid who loved church and was always full of energy! Makes me so happy! Encourages me to continue to talk to everyone everywhere, because we never know what will happen in a year or 5 or 10 from now.
We had the privilege to help teach and baptize three saints from mainland last week too, and it was one of the greatest baptismal meetings of my mission! It was with a branch that I have happened to help with baptisms every time they have been here for my whole mission, I was delighted to see when we met them that they were from this branch, one of my favorite of the great branches from mainland. It was touching to see many that I had helped in the past there strong and supporting their brothers and sisters, and going to the temple to do work for their family. They truly have an irrepressible faith and passion for the work that I have never seen before. One of the members was baptizing his wife, I felt the Spirit so strongly as he bore his testimony to her, and as he said the baptismal prayer in a voice thick with emotion. He truly understands the magnitude of what that day meant for him and his family. I have never seen a happier guy, he was all smiles the whole day, running around taking pictures, shaking our hands and thanking us over and over. It was so uplifting to be around him and the other members. Again, they have a tangible faith! I only hope that one day I can be likewise, their very presence is just uplifting because they are so faithful and excited! It's no wonder the retention there is almost 100%. They are a big family of faith! They all sang the hymns as loud as they could too, and after someone says a prayer they all say 謝謝! And they really are grateful for those prayers, and love and support all the new members. They have been some great examples to me on my mission, and have left an impact on me that I will never forget.
|Three generations getting baptized|
I look forward to many amazing things here on the island with the members and some great investigators, there is a very bright future here. I love being a missionary, and it is truly the most satisfying and heart filling work that there is. Especially when we do it His work His way. Thankyou for all the support! Love you all!