Monday, February 6, 2017

Last Mission Update

Hey Guys!
     I know It's been way too short of a time for me to update again (according to my usual response time)...But I thought I would take the opportunity to do a update on everything in a bit more detail. These past few weeks have been all over the place. As you are most likely aware, I was asked to be a part of an emergency transfer about a week and a half into this transfer. I just laughed when I got the call from the AP's... Not much in the way of the mission gets to me anymore. So I packed my bags and left from Rhiwbina to Bridgend to serve with Elder Timperley. The guy is a legend. He's an adventurous Australian who doesn't worry much about unimportant things. Just a great guy in general.  But he's not the only person I've got to know over these past few weeks. In the course of the 4 weeks there have been 4 Emergency Transfers effecting this district. It's a whole different team now. But it's been amazing to get to know all of these new people. It's got me thinking just how much goes on behind the scenes, and often we fail to see it.
     If I had stayed in Nottingham I would have never got to know all these great people, and then again I would have met so many different people there. The people around us have such a great influence on the outcome of our lives. If we fail to cultivate relationships with those around us we miss so many opportunities for happiness. Heavenly Father knows our needs and he knows the people who will influence us for good, so he puts them in our lives. We aught to utilise that a bit more, and believe that we can positively influence those around us. If we do that, life will find so much more meaning. That's been my experience these past few weeks. I'm really happy I got to come out here for my last transfer.
     So much in Wales seems different from England. The biggest thing is the people. People are just kinder here, and it makes the work so much more enjoyable. I'm just starting to remember that not all white people are actually horrible, Haha. This area is pretty spread out and there are quite a few big villages around, so we frequently go from place to place to do the work. It's like something straight from the scriptures, the people in the villages seem to have one mind. In one village you're welcomed by all, and in the next the people are ice cold. It's been a serious testament to me that the places we go and people we associate with significantly influence who we become.
     Speaking of places, we have seen quite a few castles lately, which has been quite unique. From castles converted to houses, to the living equivalent of hogwarts. I'll put some pictures up at the end.

     As far as teaching goes, we have yet to find that golden person, but we have met some pretty cool people. I think the coolest person we have run into thus far is a Polish man by the name of Yuan. We met him a few days ago while tracting and he invited us right in. He is a really cool guy, and we had a long discussion with him. So hopefully that goes well in the end. I have noticed that the people who are receptive to the truths of the gospel are always those who are humbled by the circumstances of their lives. Either through something presently oppressing them, or a deep memory of painful and difficult experiences that they formerly faced. The latter being the more unusual.  While most ask why bad things happen, some accept that life is hard and choose to learn from it. Those are the people who receive truth and conquer in this life. I am continually amazed at the power of a positive attitude. While I'm not much for talking to people all the time, doing so has shown me so much. I have seen now in multiple countries and countless groups of people that we are all so similar, and the choices we make impact us so much.
     As my mission is winding up I have been thinking more and more about my experiences out here. (In large part prompted by the endless questioning of everyone, lol) The introspection has taught me a lot. Those lessons I'll surely share in my homecoming talk, so I'm not going to make the effort to write them all out. But, I'm happy to say I'm quite at peace. I feel confident in saying I'm leaving without regrets. And I'm also confident in saying I can't wait to come home!
Love you and have a great week.
See you soon :

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Update from Wales

Hey guys! Sorry it's been so long...

It's been a crazy past few months! Let me tell you a little about what's been going on. So for the past
three months or so, I was training a new missionary in the mission. It was one of my favorite times in the mission so far.  He's an English missionary from south London, and we got on wonderfully. The best part was that our humor fit together really well.... We were always having a giggle.  It was also really cool to see his personal progress over the few months we were together. That was one of the most rewarding things I have experienced on the mission. You wouldn't believe how much he grew in those three months, and I got to watch it on the front lines. It was a great blessing.  This was all taking place in Nottingham by the way. (I can't remember if I made an update since then)
We met some really cool people along the way.  Four that really stuck out.  Three investigators and our friend Keith who came back into activity in the church.  The three investigators were really awesome people. Adham, Caleb, and Nadar.  Adam is a Syrian uni student whose in England for a couple years working on his Bachelors.   He's Muslim but was really interested to meet and felt the spirit from the first time we met with him.  Caleb is a really intelligent guy who was headed off to uni to study philosophy and theology, and he happened to live a 3 minutes walk away which was convenient. He was really interested in learning and he taught a lot of the lessons to himself. It was really cool teaching him.  Nadar is an Iranian refugee who speaks not so much English. It was quite humorous at times, but we really enjoyed trying to teach him.  He disappeared after a couple months and we were sure he died. But we later got into contact and all is well.  As for Keith, the guy is a legend. He has started coming back to church and has gave up all his old vices. It was really cool to be alongside him through his journey. And he makes us hot chocolate, so we loved him for that too. :)
Nottingham was a really great area, and though I was reluctant to go at first, I loved it.
Now I've been transferred to Wales. I'm serving in an area called Rhiwbina, which is about 6 km north of Cardiff.  I was quite reluctant to come here as well, as I only have one transfer left and I had really grown to love Notts. But I'm loving it here, It's unreal. It looks a lot like England, although the houses are a bit bigger and more spread out. But the people here are so different.  I have been amazed at how kind the people are here, day in and day out.  We took a bus today and the bus driver waited for this family for like 3 minutes to cross the street and come over. In England if you're not within bus length and running, they will not wait. No questions. So I'm loving the friendly people and the slow pace of life here. The ward is amazing too. I'm really happy that I get to finish my mission here...
So, that's basically news from me.
Oh and I have a comp from the Philippines again, so that's alright.
But yeah anyways, hope you're all doing well.