Nimen hao wode jiating he pengyou!!!
This week has been crazy!! So much has happened! Thank you so much for your letters and for the packages. I LOVE the popcorn. I have been eating a bag everyday! I aso share some with the Elders in my district and zone. They love it too. Ok so we found out mid week that we needed to get tests done for our visas. I thought that it would be a simple blood exam and maybe something else. We got chest x-rays at the BYU health center last weeks. Well come to find out it was a stool exam!!!!! EWW I won't go into details about it because it was really gross but needless to say the Elders were having a great time with the idea. They handed the stuff that we needed for the test in a little white bag. The Elders wanted to take a picture as a district with our bags. 19 year olds... shesh. Anyways, we also had to do a blood test that day too so we could take our sample to the blood test if we had finished it. All the Elders and Sister Bready finished their test that day! It wasn't until the next day in the evening that I was able to accomplish the task. hahaha So that was a lot of fun.......ish.
On a much happier/ not as gross note. One of our teachers Bai laoshi was promoted to be the director of the Chinese teachers so we lost her as our teacher. They haven't found a replacement yet but in the mean time this week we had Mi Laoshi. He was Amazing!! He served in Taipei and loved it. We learned so much as he taught. One activity that I really liked was he would read a hymn or out of the Moermen jing (book of Mormon) and we would right down word for word what he said. It was so hard but great practice since being able to hear tones and write down the pinyin for a word I dont' know is difficult. Every class we learned so many new words. He also helped a lot with our contacting that we needed to do on Saturday. I learned this week that I am HORRIBLE at contacting!! I get so tongue tied and I dont' know what to say in my limited Chinese. But I am learning slowly that the most important thing that I can do is rely on the Spirit and say things simply. So that has been a challenge this week. With Mi laoshi we also learned a lot of wenfa (grammar) which was really helpful. Now I can say a lot more because I know the grammar. Mi Laoshi also challenged us to learn the First Vision in Chinese by Saturday night. He gave us the challenge on Thursday night. It was so hard but I know that the Lord helped me. I now have the First Vision (Yuese Simi de yi ci yi xiang) memorized!! Can you believe it!! I know that the gift of tongues is real because just in the almost three weeks I have been here I have learned to pray, testify, contact, and say the First Vision in Chinese! This Gospel is so amazing!!! It has been very hard but well worth the work. Mi Laoshi has been a great teacher and so has Tan and Wei Laoshi. Unfortunately Mi Laoshi only taught us last week. He is leaving soon to go to China to study abroad. He will be in Nanjing which is North of where I was. Its sad but I am so glad he got to teach my district for that short amount of time. I feel like I have really improved and like now I can set good language goals.
Saturday was our TA. It went really well. We contacted for 15 mintues doing door to door contacting. It went a lot better than last week. Sister Bready and I are getting better and sharing the time to talk and relying on eachother more. Our lesson went GREAT! We taught a Buddist lady (she was really a member) and a member friend was there with her. We taught the First Lesson. The Spirit was so strong. We even committed her to baptism! Its interesting because you totally forget as you are giving these lessons that these people are members and that they already know what you are teaching. I felt such love for Helen (our mudaoyou) and I wanted her so much to feel the Spirit. Sister Bready and taught simply and with the Spirit. Teaching with the Spirit is the MOST important thing. It was great! We have room to improve like having the investigator talk more but it was better than last week.
Sunday was great! Sacrament meeting and our District meeting went great. I helped teach the lesson in our district meeting on the Atonement. In the evening after the devotional, which was great, Sister Bready and I watched the Joseph Smith Movie. It is so powerful. I knew as I we watched that movie that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and that he helped restore the fullness of the Gospel on the earth today. I loved the part at the end where Joseph says, "Shall we not go on in so great a cause?" I have been so blessed to have the opportunity to be a missionary. The cause of spreading the Gospel to all the world is truly the greatest cause that I could be a part of. Helping people come unto Christ is amazing! I love this Gospel!!!
Anyways, It is so great to get your letters. Except dads when he talks about ribs and walla walla onionrings!! haha Autumn I'm so sorry that your stake president is dragging his heals. I hope that he gets them sent in soon. I'm so glad that Zach's papers are in!! Let me know where he is going. What is the news about finding Kyron? Have they found him yet? Have they charged the stepmom? I was thinking about that the other day and was curious as to what happened.
I love you all and miss you very much! I pray for you and think about you always. I can't wait to hear from you soon!!
All my love,