I say this every week but..What an amazing week it has been this week. We have seen so many miracles. I truly know this is the work of the Lord. How awesome it is we get to serve Him! I love it.
As for this week: (if you don't want to read it all, just read the last paragraph about our week) :)
Last week, we called some former investigators from many years ago/some potential investigators we have meet in the last few weeks and got many set ups that way. It was neat to see and meet these people more. It was a miracle because most of the lessons, except just one or two went through!!
Monday night, we visited a former and turns out she lives in a different ward boundary now due to the recent changes but she was really nice. She has read quite a bit of the Book of Mormon--mostly to learn English--but its a good start. Her 14 year old daughter is absolutely amazing at this Chinese instrument (see the picture).
She is soon at the level where she will be able to professionally teach others!
Tuesday, we went on exchanges with the Sisters in Bade. They both came to our area since the worldwide changing of the exchange policy and we had a great time. I served with Sister Bain and we had an amazing experience. We went and visited a Wu yeye and his two grandchildren. The first thing his grandson said when we walked into their house was that he hadn't prayed in a long time! So, he totally remembered who we were! Sadly, their grandma wouldn't come out of her room she was watching a movie in, so we couldn't have a lesson with them and rescheduled for Sunday in which we could bring a member with us. We also went and visited a Cai DX (John) who met missionaries about two years ago. When we visited him, his sister came out and brought 4 glasses of Hong Cha and we cant drink it because it has tea in it and he told her for us before we even had the opportunity to..haha. But other than that, he has forgotten most of all what he learned! Sister Bain and I really expressed tonight the importance of developing a relationship with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ through prayer, scriptures, church, and baptism. He set a date to get baptized the end of March (he is going to America and Europe all of February). The amazing thing is too that he really has been prepared through the time he hasn't been meeting with missionaries. Whenever we asked him a question, he sat, thought about it, and then answered sincerely. After the lesson, we were walking back to our bikes and the member who came with us was just as excited as we were!! It is so neat to be able to see the members get excited with us for missionary work. I feel like sometimes the members sacrifice their time and see no apparent help but then when miracles like this occur, they feel like they are helping and making a difference!
Wednesday, after we exchanged back, we met and ate lunch with our most progressing investigator and his family. Han DX is progressing so much! On Wednesday, we shared with him the 3rd lesson, The Gospel of Jesus Christ. Before we shared though, he had a list of questions we were to answer. He is really using so much time to learn and come to know his Savior. We also met with him Friday evening and taught him the Word of Wisdom and he mostly has already given up most of his addictions except for drinking on occasion but...he was extremely willing to completely give it up right there and then. Before we left, Han DX basically bore his testimony to us. It was so neat. He said how he knows a lot of people call our church the 'evil' church and all but he knows that that is not true and that people shouldn't be saying that. He thanked us again for all we have taught him (we haven't even really done much..:)) but I am SO EXCITED for his baptism!!
Wednesday, we also had interviews with President Jergensen. It was good and he basically based it all on baptism and the importance of teaching repentance and baptizing converts. After interviews we had some short time to find before dinner and English class. Sister Cardon and I went and talked to these two moms in the park. At first, we just shared about English class and then just as we were about to leave, Sister Cardon said, "Well, if you ever also have any interest in Christ, we also teach about him!" And one of the mom's relied quickly saying, "I do!" we had a lesson with them and set up for this Tuesday afternoon :)!
Random Note:An English student from my first area, TouFen, moved back to TaoYuan (his hometown) because he just completed his required military service AND he is in my class again! It was so awesome to be able to see him again!! What a small world. :) Well, Taiwan is pretty small :)
Thursday after WPS, we went up to Taipei and had exchanged with the Temple Sisters-Sister Cutler and Sister Guo. I served with Sister Cutler for 24 hours and had a great time. I learned so much from her and am looking forward to applying what I learned this next week in my own proselyting.
Friday night after returning, we also visited a potential family Sister Cardon met on exchanges last week. A mom Jin JM), dad (Wang DX), and an 11 year old son. The mom grew up going to church a little bit but hasn't gone in a while and the dad is Buddhist. They had so many questions and mostly just wanted to know how our church became and why there are so many churches on the earth. So we taught the Message of the Restoration. They seemed to really enjoy it and asked good questions. We aren't going to be able to meet with them for two more weeks though because the dad is going on a business trip to China and they want to be taught all together.
Saturday, we also met with a new investigator. Su JM is 25 years old, has 4 kids, and is really looking for religion in her life again. She would love to come to church but we just need to help her find a way because fitting her and 4 kids on a motor scooter isn't really possible :). And, we have to get around her mother-in-law not agreeing to her coming to our church instead of the Catholic church...but it will all work out!
AND the BEST PART of the week, we were finding on Saturday and met this man smoking on the side of the week. Qi DX, is just recently divorced, has two little girls ages 7 and 4 and is really worried about them. His ex-wife takes them to the temples everyday and the bai-bai together and he feels like that is not the right path they need to take. He is not a Buddhist because he doesn't believe in picking up something- a rock-calling it a god and worshiping it...so, he wants his daughters to become Christian. He asked us how he could do that. Well, we told him, he needs to become their example. He laughed but then said how. We invited him to bring his two daughters and come to church the next day. Right there and then, he called his ex-wife, she was at the Buddhist temple worshiping and said that he is taking the girls to church the next morning. AND 30 minutes after church started, the Elders from the other ward who has Sacrament Meeting first walks in to the Relief Society room and tells us there is a man with too girls looking for a Sister Haacke! (Weird..he remembered my English name, right!) YES THIS MAN, we met on Saturday, came to church! AND STAYED all three hours! Sacrament meeting was an absolute blast. I tried to get as much out of it as I could but Sister Cardon and I were busy trying to keep the girls entertained so they wouldn't interrupt their dad to try and give him a good experience!! It was a huge miracle! Sunday night, I also called him to set up a date to come and meet with him and he asked if he thought his girls were ok at church. He was so nervous they were a huge distraction...they weren't at all! AND they had a great experience. It was so cute, as they were leaving, they both came up to us and gave us the biggest hugs. I love them already so much. This family is in desperate need of the gospel and I know they are ready to hear it!!! The only sad thing is that the dad is leaving for China this Friday for business. We are not yet sure how long he will be gone for :(
Han DX also came to church with his family and a recently returned LA's nonmember wife came who we are starting to teach her the lessons tonight.
LITERALLY, the MIRACLES came FLYING in this week. I know Heavenly Father loves me so much! I know he LOVES everyone of us. I am going to steal the last paragraph dad wrote in the family letter to me and Bryan to share with everyone:
As I was preparing my talk last week I was using Sam’s old laptop and I found a quote she had on her computer from President Uchtdorf. I used it in my lesson today in High Priest group. Here’s what he had to say about God’s love for all his children,
“Think of the purest, most all-consuming love you can imagine. Now multiply that love by an infinite amount—that is the measure of God’s love for you. God does not look on the outward appearance. I believe that He doesn’t care one bit if we live in a castle or a cottage, if we are handsome or homely, if we are famous or forgotten. Though we are incomplete, God loves us completely. Though we are imperfect, He loves us perfectly. Though we may feel lost and without compass, God’s love encompasses us completely. He loves us because He is filled with an infinite measure of holy, pure, and indescribable love. We are important to God not because of our resume but because we are His children. He loves every one of us, even those who are flawed, rejected, awkward, sorrowful, or broken. God’s love is so great that He loves even the proud, the selfish, the arrogant, and the wicked. What this means is that, regardless of our current state, there is hope for us. No matter our distress, no matter our sorrow, no matter our mistakes, our infinitely compassionate Heavenly Father desires that we draw near to Him so that He can draw near to us.”
I love this quote. I think it perfectly explains God’s love for all of us. I hope as you labor this week you will remember that your ultimate mission is to bring people to Christ and help them understand the amount of love God has for them. We are indeed his children. I love you both.
I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH!!! Have an amazing week and hopefully you don't get snowed in! Stay safe!
1.This week Sister Cardon and I also almost set our smoke alarm off...we burnt cookies we were trying to cook in the toaster oven. We forgot to buy food Saturday for Sunday meals so we survived off of cookies and found some Ramen in our 72hour kits. :) Yup, I still can't cook :)
2. Sister Cardon and I both had a couple close calls on our bikes but I have yet to crash on my mission :)
3. Sister Cardon and I forgot to bring our rain coats to church and yes, as soon as we got to church, it started pouring rain and never stopped all of Sunday. So our 20 minute bike ride back to our house from the church yesterday we got soaked. Luckily, Sunday we stayed really busy with lessons so we weren't out in the pouring rain too much
4. Taiwan has a new Female President--菜英文. (Her name 英文 . Those two characters mean English but I'm sure also have some better meanings in names :))
5. So many funny, awesome things happened but these are just a few. I love what I am learning...and yes, the mission is pretty crazy :)
Eating with Han DX and his family.
Parking in Taiwan.