Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Merry Christmas week!

Dec 20 2016

Merry merry Christmas everyone. Can you believe it's already that time of year again! This is going to be a real exciting week for us I am sure, lots of visits to members and trying to find Chinese people somewhere! But let's get into this week first.



Little things that happened:
Finally started taking driving lessons again, having my test end of January. 
All our investigators left this week for holiday.
We have finally taught on the university again.
Did some caroling!   
Power went out for like 2 days.
Messing around a bit (all within the rules)

We had a great week, on Tuesday we got hired up by the Assistants to help set up for a meeting. We were finding around the university, about to go eat some tea, when the assistants called, (which normally for other missionaries isn't a good thing?) but I love it since me and elder Dobbs are such pals! So instead of eating we get rallied in to help set up the chapel for our big Mission tour meeting tomorrow so we were at the chapel until like 11:00 at night only to get back and have our power not working and six elders sleeping on our floor for the meeting the next day. It was great though, we got to mess around with sound checks and get a little sneak peak of the meeting. Hookups for being friends with the assistants.

Wednesday was awesome and we will have to end there so we can focus in on the good stuff. On Wednesday we had the Mission Tour, where President Keaton, the European area President came to our mission, and spoke to us along with President Turvey. Truly two very inspired men. Some of the highlights of the meeting were,
President Keaton talking to us, "you are the miracles of the Restoration." Never would of thought of myself as a miracle in anyway, but being a missionary gives me the opportunity to be one for someone else. I love it.
"You're a Mormon, we thrive on adversity! It's what makes us" Isn't that such a remarkable statement. Only in the Mormon church will you ever find someone who is dealing with a life-battling challenge and do it with a smile and positive attitude. That truly is a miracle/blessing of the gospel itself.
"Work hard and be grateful, or learn how to do it in 50 years, and regret not doing it today."
"Choose not to mind that this is hard. Choose to be happier all the time."
"You're in the training of a lifetime of service."
"Don't worry, but work hard. Don't be so anxious, enjoy this, but work hard."

I could go on and on with seriously hundreds of more, but for timing and for writing sake I won't. But I envied his speaking skills, his ability to follow the spirit and the way he taught us. It was such an inspiring meeting a great highlight of my mission for sure.


This week we had a remarkable experience with our friend R........ We had a lesson with her on Saturday and this was the last time that we would meet before she left in holiday so we wanted to make it good. So we thought and thought but we couldn't figure out what we should teach her. When all of a sudden we decide to show her Look not behind thee Mormon message. That's what we went in with. We should her the video and after which she explained how it was an answer to her prayer. About how she had something from her past come up and she wasn't sure to go back to it or move on. And then we showed her the video and she said she now knows her answer. It was an amazing experience. I love how the lord uses us to answer his children's questions. It was a remarkable experience. 

I am just so happy to be a missionary at this time of my life. What a remarkable time of year where our thought and feelings are turned towards the Savior. I truly know that Jesus is the Christ, our Prince of Peace, and Redeemer of the world. He is the way the truth and the LIGHT! I love being able to share his gospel with His children. Only through Him can we return to live with God again. I love him so much for all that he has done for me. He is the greatest gift! 
Have a merry Christmas.
Love,
Elder Hanks ιŸ“ι•·θ€

Sent from my iPad 

Monday, December 19, 2016

We are smilin' over here people...!

Well everyone, I hope you all are enjoying the snow over there in America. Or whatever weather you may be having. Well we had a fun week this week so let's get started shall we.

This week was pretty slow on the lesson side of things because of not being able to go to the university to teach. NEVERTHELESS the promise in 1 Nephi 3:7 is true. The lord always provides a way, and for us that way was KFC. We had a couple lessons there, which were alright. Until the lord blessed us once again and we found out that there was a member in another ward who is on the administration for the university. Called her and explained the situation, she called us back within 10 min and we now have official permission to teach at the university. Such a blessing!

R......... our investigator is doing great. She like all our other investigators has been so busy with end of school year essays and tests that it has been really hard to try and meet, but recently we had a lesson with her and taught about temples and eternal families and we were able to reschedule her for the 14 of January. So we are praying that she will make that goal. 

This week we went on exchanges with the Zone leaders in their area. Their area is a small little village called Meltham. While on exchanges we had a lesson with this guy named D....... And D...... had the most action figures and posters of Star Wars I have ever seen in my life in one room. He is an avid fan, but also a great person. He will be so blessed when he joins the church.

Well we also had our Transfers this past Saturday and it was quite non-eventful. Only 2 people in the whole zone were changed. And one of them happened to be......
A different elder. That's right I'm staying here with elder Liss! And I couldn't be happier! We are going to have a lot of fun this transfer! So looks like I'll be here for Christmas! And it started off well by having all the missionaries speak in church in sacrament, so yes people that was for the 3rd time in this ward. Haha I love it!

Okay so cool thing that I found this week was in 1 Mosiah 1:6-7
6 O my sons, I would that ye should remember that these sayings are true, and also that these records are true. And behold, also the plates of Nephi, which contain the records and the sayings of our fathers from the time they left Jerusalem until now, and they are true; and we can know of their surety because we have them before our eyes.

7 And now, my sons, I would that ye should remember to search them diligently, that ye may profit thereby; and I would that ye should keep the commandments of God, that ye may prosper in the land according to the promises which the Lord made unto our fathers.

So I was thinking to myself, search, what does that mean. And if you define the word it means, "to try and find something by looking or otherwise seeking carefully and thoroughly." So my question then is, how often when we read do not only study the scriptures but we search for something. An answer to a question? An answer to a friends question? A solution to a problem? Advice on a situation?  I mean that's what they are there for right. So that we too may prosper! I challenge you all, that when you read your scriptures don't just study them, search them and they will bless and change your life as they have done to mine. I know the scriptures are true. 

Well that's it for me folks! Hope you all have a wonderful season of giving!
Love elder Hanks!

Pics:

1. Us at our Ward Christmas Party! Left to right: Lucas, Bowen, elder Liss, R, and me.


2. Our exchanges with the Zone leaders. Left to right: elder Stiggson from Sweden, me, elder Liss, elder Omondi from Kenya.


3. The only house with lights on it in Huddersfield.


4. Shout out to my trainer elder chen, who goes home this week. What a legacy he left and I am excited to see him finish a faithful mission.


5. Our other Christmas decor.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Helloooo December!

Dec 5 2016




Can you believe it's December, wow my mind can't believe it! I hope you all are going out and serving in 25 ways over these 25 days. This week was quite interesting, a lot of things happened both good and bad, so let's start with the bad first. Being the Chinese elders most if not all our work is done around the university, our finding, and our teaching. All of our teachings have been on the university, in a place called the student central which is a big meeting area for students. We have taught there for every one of our lessons. Well this past Friday, a man with a badge, interrupted our lesson and kicked us out of the uni. I tried to talk with him to see if there was any way possible for us to stay, but he bluntly said
no and we were gone.

So currently me and elder Liss are searching for a place to now teach people, because we no longer have a place and it's not looking too good.

On the positive side of things.... on Zone p-day we had a competition/ tournament of games for the Zone. To see who was the top companionship, and well glad to say that yes Elder Liss and I WON! I know big surprise but it was actually pretty fun.

We have found a lot of new people in our finding this week, it was our focus of the week to improve our finding. So we have met a ton of fun people including a few, Phill Collins, S......, C......., L......... (pronounce that as you wish) and many more. Haha a fun part to working with Chinese people.

R.........our friend, (our new word for investigators) is doing really well. She was able to talk to her parents about the baptism, and she has no support from them. But she is continuing to meet with us and this last week we have had some really good lessons with her! So we are optimistic that she will still get baptized, at the end of this year or beginning of next year!



False Prophet John! So quick background, this is an English man who hates mormons, studies the bible intensely and every time you see him he stops you, and tries to prove us how we are a false church. This was my first time meeting him this week. I can't tell you all about or conversation because it would take an hour to explain. Therefore to give you the shortened version, I am not a believer in a "war of words" and Joseph Smith puts it. But I am a more firm Believer in
defending his name. And after quite the debate, False Prophet walked away in frustration after not being able to answer my questions. I don't think he will be bugging missionaries for a while.



This Saturday was awesome we had a Stake choir Christmas concert. It was so cool because they invited the Huddersfield Gospel choir, which is like the black Baptist choir. And it was so awesome, to actually hear the typical Gospel choir songs, with the clapping and hallelujahs, swaying and all sorts of things. It was quite the experience!

Well people I am sure that next week will be a more exciting week for us. Please pray that the uni will let us teach here, if not we are in big trouble! Love you all and hope you guys have a wonderful December with all the shopping, and whatnot that goes on in this time.

Merry Christmas! πŸŽ„
Elder HanksιŸ“ι•·θ€


Pics
1.  Our district!
2. A more serious district
3. Our Christmas decor!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Smallest Zone but big changes

Nov 21 2016

 Pano of  beautiful  Huddersfield!


This is how the Baptists advertise.... ! 


Wow what a wonderful week it has been for the Chinese YSA elders. So yeah cool thing found out this week that me and elder Liss are liked assigned to the YSA elders here so that should be super sweet! So let's get you guys acquainted with the area here. So sorry not too exciting of a letter.

L....... So he is our favorite gator who just passed his interview on Saturday and came to church on Sunday and we will be having his baptism. So we are super excited for him he absolutely loves prayer. Every time we ask him to pray he gets mad because he doesn't want to be asked he just wants to do it. So haha love hearing his prayers they are the best, it always reminds me how to properly pray. I'm really excited for L.......

Next up is R.....! So she came to church this Sunday and she really liked it. She is really close to working towards her date of baptism. She is just trying to convince her parents to give her the support behind it, but she is willing even if her parents say they don't support it. So we are excited for her.

This week we had Zone training and they asked me to do a training on boldness, and everyone really liked it. I wanted to make sure that people remembered what I taught so instead of going into too much details, I used an object to enhance my point. *see picture to find object.






So this week we went on exchanges with the other elders, and I went with elder Stumpp. He is from Idaho and is the biggest scouting fanatic I have ever met !  He is a new missionary, been here for like 7 weeks so fresh out of Provo. But we had some fun together, I didn't want to do Chinese work with him so we went knocking and WOW! I have gotten a little bit rusty on knocking, haven't knocked on doors in a couple of months so he kinda helped me out a little.

Our branch- the branch Pres. has been transfigured by accident! 

So this is where the changes part comes into play. So my mission has been quite unique. The beginning of my mission was mostly English work, knocking in doors, teaching members and less actives, all that common good stuff. Then I got switched to Chinese work, the best work. Which consisted mainly of finding and teaching investigators with some members here and there. It was great I loved it!

Now I am in a Chinglish (Chinese + English) area where we have to try and balance both. It has been quite the challenge because the work is so different between the two that, sometimes in an English lesson me and elder Liss will switch into Chinese, or the other way around. We get some confused looks every now and again. It's been awesome!





I don't have too much to write about this week. We did a lot of finding and got some really fun people, we are super excited for L....... this week and we also are looking forward to Zone conference tomorrow which always is an uplifting experience.

Love you all, have a great thanksgiving! Be grateful for what you have! Eat some pie for me!


Love Elder Hanks






Nov 28 2016 

Hey lads and lasses how are all you doing. Gotta apologize last week I dropped the ball, I forgot to mention thanksgiving. So happy late thanksgiving from elder hanks, sorry it's late it's just hard to remember in a country that doesn't celebrate it. But thankfully we had a wonderful family feed us a great thanksgiving meal, with turkey, stuffing, and pie all the good stuff. A little different from home but still good. In the spirit of thanksgiving thank you all so much for the support and love that you have shown me over this past year. You guys are just amazing. Nevertheless the time has passed and Christmas is in the bitter cold air of England, it has been nonstop Christmas music in the flat greatly anticipating the wonderful season of His Birth. I hope you all plan on doing the Christmas initiative. It's such a great idea.




So for this week, it was a pretty busy week for us. So I will get all the highlights. This week we had Zone Conference, and that was just sooo awesome. My favorite part about the whole thing was these things,
"Proper preparation prevents poor performance."
"Each of us is an innkeeper, we choose if their is enough room in our hearts for Christ." 
"You ARE the message, everything about you is the message, before you even speak. So make sure the message is the best it can be." 
It was a really great zone conference and got to see all my mission friends from all over. Saw elder Chen for the last time on the mission. He goes home on the 13th so farewell to my trainer! But it was great!

After this zone conference me and elder Liss were asked to stay behind by president which normally is a very scary thing for any missionary and it was. So us and a whole bunch of sisters, seriously me and Elder Liss were the only elders in the room besides the Assistants. But president talked to us about putting greater focuses on certain people, and those people were YSA. so he called/told us that we are now YSA assigned missionaries. Which we practically already are being Chinese speaking but he relayed to us that their are more things to now do, and some things we don't have to worry about anymore! But I am sooo excited, im a YSA missionary now! 

Morning exercise competition !! 

Then to end this week off, we had a wonderful weekend. On Saturday we had the baptism of L...... and he was just sooo excited. We took a member with us to K......'s house on Friday night, and when we left the member said he had never seen someone so excited for baptism. So L...... was excited we were excited. The baptism went really well. No problems and lots of practicing to assure everything would work out. (Elder Liss practiced baptizing me like 28 times just to be sure!) but it was wonderful the spirit was present and L......... is so excited to be a member!

Oh also I have a new record for speaking in a ward. So in every single area I have served in I have given one talk. Well that has changed already. The 2nd week here in Huddersfield I noticed that the stand was quite empty and as the first speaker ended the conversation, I saw the bishop whispering into his counselors ears trying to figure out what to do. Then to have the second speaker end his talk early. You could see the panic on their faces. So I stared down the first counselor, and finally got his attention. Mouthed to him that if he needed to I would gladly speak. 

Quickly he shot the message into the bishops ear and the bishop perked up a little bit, look to see who I was because they didn't even know who I was yet! Debated for a little bit and then gave me a thumbs up and there I was up on the stand on the second week in Huddersfield. It was great. However only to have the same thing happen once again, that's right people I did it again! Two weeks in a row giving a talk in sacrament! If that is not fulfilling the statement in Preach my gospel of  "asking yourself if you are a blessing or a burden to the Bishop?" 

Me, E. Walter, E. Liss &  E. Ferrell 
                

It was a fun week this week but today's, it's Zone preparation Day so we are going to be playing some games. But this week was awesome! Remember to do your day of service this week on Dec 1st. Can you believe it, its already December!! That's sooo crazy!
Love you all have a Wonderful week, putting up the Christmas tree, turning on the lights, all that good stuff English people don't know how to do. 

Love
Elder Hanks ιŸ“ι•·θ€

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

It snowed my first day in Huddersfield!

Nov 14 2016 

Wow well this week has been one of a kind, haha it has been a really great week for me and elder Liss. 

Me & E. Liss -  you can't see England on our map due to it's celestial glory!   hahaha 

Elder Liss is such a great kid- he is so uplifting. He is always happy and it's really easy to be happy around him. It is cool because we knew each other in the Mtc, and we were trained by the same person, almost at the same time. We can already tell we are going to have an amazing next few months.So this week has been a happy week. But let me tell you this place is sooo different compared to Newcastle. But the little city of Huddersfield is great! 

And guess what it snowed the first day here in Huddersfield! It's going to be a great transfer, I can already tell. I know I said I would be focusing on missing Newcastle but I'm loving it here in Huddersfield! 

We have a couple of investigators that are doing really well. One is L..... he is progressing really well we taught him 3 times this week. Oh he is from China and he is just sooo funny. And we should be having his interview later on this week. So we are really excited to see what happens. He came to church this week and he really liked it. So we are excited for him! He is awesome.
how do you like my inspiration wall..? 

Our next investigator R...... is so amazing- she is such a miracle. So R.....'s  story is that she wanted to get closer to God so she prayed that she would find someone to help her accomplish that. And then elder Liss ran into her the next day and ever since then she prays and reads and yesterday when we met her she bore her testimony that she knows it true and even brought her friend F..... from Columbia and now we are teaching him as well!  So her baptismal date is set for the 3 of December.  So we are excited to work with her for these weeks.

My first day here I made a snowman! 

The Huddersfiled District !




But this week has been really good, I have never laughed so much on my mission. I am really excited for this week so we will see what happens! And for all the weeks to come!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

halloween, birthday and transfer week....ahhhh!

Thank you all for the birthday wishes you guys are awesome! It's a strange thought to think another year gone, but looking forward to a new decade! So thank you everyone.


Halloween for us was pretty fun. We spent all day p-day playing sports! Which felt so good to finally play some sports and to show me how out of shape I have become. But we played some rugby with some elders from Tonga and South Africa, and it was so fun. The only bad part was how sore we felt on Tuesday. But then we had a massive cleaning fest, and threw out almost 5 rubbish bags of stuff from our Flat! Some of the things missionaries will leave.......

So this week was a pretty good week for us. We had loads of finding this week, like loads of finding. So yeah that always leaves the feet sore at the end of the day, but it means we're working hard. 


On Wednesday (my birthday) we did another Zone service project, which was fun and really cold as well. But it's always fun to do service, and then that night we had a really good time when us, Elder Lui and Jensen, our recent Convert C.....M....., and the Elders investigator A..... who is getting baptised this Saturday. We went to T.G.I. Fridays, and wow we got the biggest burgers ever! They were huge I'll show you the picture of them, but yes it was a nice proper American burger! 

                       


On Saturday we had something really cool happen. We got a call from the Zone leaders asking us if we could do a Skype lesson for the Elders down in York with a Chinese guy. So we went to the chapel and had a Skype lesson it was really cool. Now I'm just confused on whose investigator he is, their's or ours??.. 

So this week I have been doing something new in my studies, and I thought I would invite y'all to do the same. So recently while reading the scriptures I have been trying to find some scriptures that I would want to describe me. So if someone asked about who elder hanks was, they could say Jacob 1:10 or Alma 48:17. So if you would like to try it, feel free to do so!:)

Well everyone it's that time of the year when missionaries find out where they will be spending there Christmas, because this week was Transfers! And a lot of unexpected things happened here. So I am just going to say this quickly because of feelings and lack of time. So elder Zheng is now the DISTRICT LEADER FOR NEWCASTLE!!!! What! So fun being DLA is the best. Too bad it's not going to be me..  why ? because my time is Newcastle has run out! I'm moving to Huddersfield to be with my brother Elder Liss in the Chinese area down there! I am so sad that my time here is up and we'll it's going to be an interesting next couple of weeks. Next week I will talk more about this but we have to go to a meeting today for elder Zheng so I don't have much time!


Not much else to report on this week, except that the weather here is turning sooooo cold, the wind here in Newcastle is so big and well it leaves you shivering! Haha gotta love it! Thanks again everyone for the birthday wishes! Hope you all have a great week this week!


Wednesday, November 2, 2016

We know how to Halloween party...!

Perfect halloween weather ! Right?! 
Haha well this week was a little different from last week, hard to compete with Meeting and apostle. Not as much exciting stuff has happened but we will try and make this as exciting as possible alright!  But shout out to Elder King in Canada! Happy birthday man!

So first cool thing is we got this new investigator, and guess what his name is Mario! Yes I know Chinese, living in England with a name of Mario, and no he doesn't have a brother named Luigi. Don't ask me why? Because some of these names are sooooooo....... interesting! But he is awesome, we found him on a blitz me and elder Jensen. And so me and elder Jensen decided to have a little fun. So we started the conversation in English, and then to make it exciting, we at a random point of the conversation switch to Chinese and see how long it takes for people to recognise that we are speaking Chinese! Haha makes me laugh just thinking about all the puzzled, confused faces we always get.  But with Mario he was sooo shocked, that's probably why he was willing to meet with us, but we met him and then we had a lesson with him later in the week and scheduled him for Baptism on November 12th!! NICE! So that's Mario!

A guy getting baptized in the english ward &
wanted a picture with the Chinese speaking elders!
 Who wouldn't?! haha.
On Tuesday we had to take an adventure. So elder Zheng accidentally left his iPad on the coach from Mission Conference so on Tuesday we located the iPad and had to take my first bus since being here out to the middle of Nowhere to get it back. Luckily this sweet little old lady helped us get off at the right stop. But that took a huge chuck out of the day because there was only one bus that went there, and it came every hour. So we got there found the place and then had 50 min to contact Chinese people! Haha didn't exactly happen since we were out in the boonies, and ran into like 1 person the whole time!

On Friday this week we went on exchanges with the Zone Leaders. I went with elder Stirling, he is such a great guy. But on exchanges..... we had some fun experiences. He wanted to see what it was like to do Chinese work so we went to town centre, and we'll to say the least we left after 20 min because he felt useless and so we went knocking in a Uni area and haha wow I am so glad that I am Chinese speaking. People just have the lamest excuses ever.







When guys are in charge of decorating for a party.....



So Saturday was pretty fun. We had a branch Halloween party, and it was really really successful. We missionaries were responsible for running the games, and we had a lot of fun doing it. We also had quite a few investigators come to the activity and have a lot of fun there so it was really beneficial.  

Also to end off this decent week, we had a lesson with S.......... our recent Convert who was baptised last week. And there she tells us that she finally got a job! And we are like "Whoaaaaaaa yayyyyyy AWESOME!" But down in Cambridge. And she said she was leaving in 3 days. So that was a shock, so now our newest member of the Branch is already gone, haha but luckily we were able to get her a temple recommend interview before she left and now she is going to try and go to the temple down in London. So that's sad to hear but it's a blessing for her to found work so we can't complain!

Well that's all I got for this week. Hope you all have a wonderful Halloween, eat lots of candy and enjoy it, because English people don't know how to do Halloween but that's alright! Have a good week everybody!

Love
Elder Hanks ιŸ“ι•·θ€
Sent from my iPad 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

BEST WEEKEND EVER!!

Oct 24 2016

Well people we are just going to skip the week and go right to the weekend okay!! Some pretty great things happened, but before I do let me tell you about Tuesday okay? okay cool, not like you guys really have a choice but ya know anywho........ I am just going to apologize now this is probably going to be the longest letter I ever write on my mission so be Prepared!




So Tuesday right long day of street contacting like all day long but then we had a baptismal interview for S........!? (Interview was totally supposed to be on Monday but some one got a bit tired and fell asleep and missed her interview?.? WHAT!!??!! I know! However it actually turned out to be a huge Miracle like we are talking David and Goliath size Miracle here people!

So we are waiting for S........ to show up right and we'll she shows up AND she brings a friend?! Like who brings a friend to an interview?! but ya know it's cool I don't really mind! As long as she chooses to get baptized right! Well coolest thing happens right soooooo......
     They sit down right, and immediately her friend (k...... who is from Ghana and speaks English -  haven't done English in a lesson for a while) starts to fire all sorts of questions at us! And in my mind I'm all going down tragedy lane here thinking she has come to bash us when we are supposed to be having an interview here with her friend?! But luckily I was wrong. Her questions were so good!! Next thing you know elder Zheng is translating the interview to S....... and me and the another missionary go sit with K........  We felt inspired to teach the Plan of Salvation and no joke the whole time she is just nodding her head in totally agreement, saying "yes that makes sense" and so on... Easily by far one of the most powerful, spiritual lessons I have ever had on my mission. The spirit was just so strong I couldn't believe it. And at the end of the lesson this is what she shared with us,
" Never in my life have I felt this kind of feeling before. I have lived a life full of anxiety thinking that I was never good enough, I had no purpose in life, that I wasn't loved or belonged. And what you just shared with me, has changed my life for what I now know to be eternity. Thank you for changing my life!" Then the best thing that I just love hearing more than ever. "You"re view on God, is the best version I have ever heard, this makes way more sense than any other religion, I want this to be true!"

LIKE WHAT PEOPLE!!!! This is on the first lesson! And she is sooooo prepared she has been waiting for this her entire life, and expressed so much of her worries and struggles that she has had, and how the gospel is going to solve every single one of those issues! She is so excited to finally pray and know that she is going to be heard and to read the Book of Mormon, she is so eager to learn about her Loving father in Heaven! It was by far the Highlight of my mission! And to make it even better S........ passed her interview that day! So it was an insanely good day for me and Elder Zheng! What sooo good! So yah really really good day on Tuesday!

So took my theory driving test here in England, really hard, but I passed. So I got 2 of 3 test passed now for the hardest part! I almost have my license!!

Friday: well Friday was a good day as well. On Friday we had the baptism of S.......! It was awesome to finally have her baptism it made this week feel so long waiting for it. But everything turned out great. We prepped the food, everyone was all time, S........ came early. C......M..... our recent convert nevertheless gave a perfect opening prayer. I gave a talk and I didn't butcher it so that was a relief. And S......... only had to be baptized twice (because of long hair issues) but it all worked out great! So glad to have her now a member of the church! Sorry this email is probably really boring for a lot of y'all, but it was a really good week.

The Chen Dynasty!  Left to Right: Elder Glenn (Elder Liss' current trainee), Elder Liss (Elder Chen's former trainee, and my bro), Elder Southwick (Elder Chen's current trainee my other bro), LEGENDARY ELDER CHEN, Me (Elder Chen's first trainee:), Elder Leavitt (My trainee), Elder McTavish (elder Leavitt's current trainee).
                                                      

So now for the good stuff. So on Friday night right after the Baptism us and the Sisters ran to the train station to catch a train down to Leeds. Then when we arrived in Leeds. And when we got off the train poor sister Huang... well she left her bag on the train, ya know the thing with everything in it like iPad, money, credit cards, passport, missionary planner, train tickets.... etc all the necessary things. Haha so after arriving in Leeds at 9:30 we didn't leave the train station until ten when they got her bag off the train in Sheffield. So some change of plans there! So the assistants came and got the sisters and had to take them on a 2 hour drive to Sheffield to get her bag and because we were staying with the Assistants that night, you know what that means. YES PEOPLE..... we did not get to bed until 2:30am sat morning. Only to be told that we then had to wake up at 4:30 to help set up with the meeting! Haha it was so fun, two hours of sleep in a 3 hour meeting but I couldn't be happier do you want to know why?!.,,.,..? Well I got to shake hands with President Russell M. Nelson, Elder Donald L. Hallstrom of the Presidency of the Seventy, Elder Richard Kearon Europe Area President, Bishop Gerald CaussΓ© of the Presiding Bishopric, Elder Saban of the Area Presidency, and all of their wives! What sooo amazing. And President Nelson said Ni hao to me, since we have that Chinese connection! I don't have the time or the room to tell you everything but I simply want you to know this! They are truly called of God. 3 hours of uplifting messages, celestial music and A Christmas message from President Nelson! Absolutely amazing! I will just share with you my favorite quote of the meeting,
"God can easily, willingly and lovingly give you all that he has, and we can enjoy all that he has. But he cannot give us who he is, we have to earn that. And that's why we are here."      SOOOOOOOOOOO GOOD! 

The whole Leeds Mission! ( E. Hanks right in the center behind the elder with the turquoise tie)

I love missions, they are the greatest thing ever. I have experienced so much more than what I ever expected to, I have met and shook hands with Apostles and Prophets, strengthened and solidified my testimony of this gospel, met famous Singers (Osmonds), made life long friends, overcomes struggles and challenges, seen a new country, learn a new language, and most importantly I have leaned what it means to be a true disciple of Jesus Christ, which is only obtained through a lifetime of Christlike service. I have learned of my Merciful older  Brother And his amazing role in my life, and truly learned that this truly is His only true Church on the Earth today! I love my Father in Heaven!


Love you all! Have an amazing week!
Love
Elder HanksιŸ“ι•·θ€

The AP shirt that they won't let me sign......