AWWW I love you all SO much and MISS you all like crazy!!! I love it here though!! The spirit is so strong and the people here are amazing!
Bryan, thanks so much for the MTC tips and suggestions! I will definitely put those to good use! Thanks so much for talking about personal study time and language study. They say the language will come if you know the doctrine!! It seems like you are doing amazing and I love reading your emails! Keep up on studying the language and getting to know the people there. I know they already love you!! (You don't have to read all this if you don't have time)
Marissa, thanks so much for you letter! I miss you too! Keep doing so well in school and with your social life :). You are a huge example to me and I am so glad that I am your older sis!! Keep choosing the right. Study your scriptures daily! It will help in your everyday life!
Lachlan, I am so happy you won your football game!! Way to go on scoring those two touchdowns for your team!! I loved reading about it!! Love you!!
Alexa, I love and miss you too and just think about it..I'll be home soon :) And yes, you can have my purple container. Keep being who you are!
Wednesday was a hard day. Saying good bye to you all was one of the hardest things in my life! You are all my rocks and my best friends! After we got my pass, name tag, books, and papers, we dropped my luggage off at my room and I headed off to my first language class. I was the last one there so they had already started a little bit. I met my companion, Sister Lindsay, and I Love her to death! We are so alike and clicked right off the bat! We laugh all the time together and also feel the spirit so strong all the time!! She is from North Ogden, Utah and is 19 as well. She went to her first year of school at Weber. We know each other so well already and it has been great! After we went to a couple of orientation meetings and had some lessons. My district consists of four sister and four elders. All of us are going to the Taiwan, Taipei mission except the two other sisters. One is going to New York and the other one is going to Canada. We are all Chinese speaking. I also love my district. We laugh together all the time and also have some cool spiritual experiences. This past week was a little hard about being reverent during personal and companion study. The older districts told us that this next week, it will become easier because we will get out all of our stories and be able to know when to talk with one another. We have bonded so quickly. Our Elders are like my little brothers! They all just graduated from high school this year. Elder Bates is from Singapore (he was living over there as an expat with his family). Elder Diepeveen is from somewhere in Utah. Elder Smith is from Arizona, and Elder Butler is from Syracuse, Utah. (Dad, he said his neighbors are Haacke's...what family do we have from Syracuse? He said their names and they kind of sounded familiar but I couldn't remember).
Wednesday night, Sister Lindsay and I could remember how to get to our classroom going back from one of the orientation lessons and we spotted Elder Diepeveen and Elder Bates in front of us so we started walking really fast and Elder Diepeveen is like 6'6 so his stride is huge so when we got back we were like out of breath and the Elders were like "Why are you out of breath?" So we had a good laugh about that.
Thursday, We had to do this orientation thing on the computer in our classroom and the volume wouldn't work so Sister Lindsay and I told our district we would run back to our Residence Hall and grab our speakers. So we literally ran because it took so long to figure out how to use the sound that we were running a little late. On our way to the Residence Hall, a group of Elders yelled out, "Don't be late Sisters!" And in the end the sound wouldn't even work. Later that night, we figured out we had to turn on the T.V to get the sound...District blonde moment!! Everyone is SO nice here and welcoming! You feel so home here! Hopefully the next 8 weeks will fly by!!
Friday we had our first investigator and we were SO prepared..but it went AWFUL! We were planning on talking about God and who He is and then we were going to teach Huang Zong Xian (our investigator) how to pray. The other sisters went first and they were in there for like 30 minutes. They got out and said they had an amazing lesson and it went so well. (Oh by the way, they are all in Chinese, our investigator doesn't speak English). So we say a quick prayer and go in. We started asking Huang Zong Xian if he knows who God is and he said (In Chinese) oh the previous sisters already told me and we were like oh...okay and so then we asked him if he knew how to pray and he said, oh the previous sisters already taught me and we were like OH goodness..so we just tried to say a couple of things and then ended it by bearing our testimonies and saying a closing prayer. So we go out hurry and told the elders and so they go in..didn't really have a lesson..haha...So later that evening we were talking to the other districts in our Zone and we told them about it and they were like the investigator is not supposed to do that! He is supposed to "forget" what the previous sisters or Elder taught. So we were kind of sad we didn't really get to practice our lesson but we will get another chance..The only hard part is sometime this week (probably tomorrow) we are going to have to teach Huang Zong Xian again! So we will all prepare a different lesson I guess?! haha we will probably tell our teacher tonight in class and see what we should do...
Saturday and Sunday was absolutely amazing! I LOVE General Conference! We had no classes, no language study, no nothing so it was a nice two days of being able to listen to the Apostles and Prophets of God! On Saturday I got my first Dear Elders from you all and I was so excited! Our district leader has to get our mail for us. For the next couple weeks, it will be Elder Diepeveen. He gave it too me when we sat down for the second session of General Conference and I was like "ELDER AND SISTERS!! I GOT MAIL!!" I was probably a little too excited!! Thanks so much for all sending me something!! It really lifted my spirits!! On Saturday, I loved the closing prayer of the second session. When he said something along the lines of, 'please bless the missionaries' parents, grandparents, and families'. It made me all think of you all! Sunday night we also have Sunday Night Devotional and Vai Sikahema came and spoke to us!!! He is amazing!! He played football for BYU on the National Championship Team, played NFL football, served a mission in South Dakota, and now covers the Olympics and Sports on NBC. The first thing he told us was to take our pens and our paper and put it under our chairs because he didn't want us taking notes. He said you have been taking notes all day from Prophets and Apostles. There is no need to take notes tonight. He shared so many different stories about missionary work and all that he has done in his life after his mission as a 'missionary'. Sister Lindsay and I got to meet him and take a picture with him!! We were able to go to the temple this morning and the Spirit was so strong! I love the temple. It brought me so much peace and reassured me of what I am doing for the next 18 months of my life is what I am supposed to be doing! I already am loving my mission experience!! It is amazing!
I know this church is true with out a doubt in my mind. I am so grateful I have the opportunity to serve a mission--especially to the people of Taiwan. Continue pressing forward and being righteous! The Lord will truly bless you when you are obedient to this commandments!
I LOVE YOU ALL so much!! I miss you like crazy!
Sister Haacke (Huang Jie Mei)
P.S. Dad, thanks so much for sharing your experience with being over in Taiwan. I didn't know I will be getting a new mission president in June. That will be an amazing experience. I am so excited to meet the people. I so wish I could have met the lady that you talked about in the letter. It is so sad she died of lung cancer but knowing where she is, I know I will be able to meet her with you in this after life.
Mom, thanks so much for sharing D&C 59:23. Pumpkin waffles sound amazing! The food here is okay..it makes me sick to my stomach sometimes but its alright. :) I LOVE YOU and miss you so much. You truly are my best friend!
I will try to send pictures but I can't get it to work for some reason..The Elder's have SDcard adapters so I'm going to use one of theirs as soon and they are done because for some reason plugging in my camera won't work...
Needs: Cheap shower cap, GRANDMA, could you send me a couple of family temple names to do? We go every Monday morning, popcorn, a SDcard reader--like at Best Buy or something..just cheap (Try and get it to me before next Monday) :), and I think that is all :)
Thanks so much! You are all in my prayers and thought daily!
The first selfie? with all our books is our first companionship study.
I saw some friends from high school. Sister Klingler, Elder Taylor, and Elder Haddon all leave today or tomorrow.
My companion Sister Lindsay and I.
On a Temple walk yesterday...
Fireside with Vai Sikahema.