Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Service really pays off!

Sept 5th 2016
Hello my family and Friends! This week has been so so so so so so fun! Holy cow if every week was like this week I would never come home. Sorry family but this week was just too fun! So let's get started shall we. 
A cool old church

So on Monday this week we brought one of our new friends to FHE, his name is T…….. So we had the spiritual thought for FHE. We shared the video hope of gods light a really good video. And then we talked about how we receive answers to prayers, how everyone can receive their own prayers in their own way, I felt like it went really well. After FHE we were walking home and our friend T…… was asking us all kinds of questions about prayers, it was really good.

So here in England a lot of the Chinese students who come here, come first to learn English at something called Intu. So that is the first thing they study when they get here is English. And then they have to take an English test. If they pass they can stay if they don't then they have to go back home to China. So we have 2 investigators in the Intu program, D……. and C…….. And both of them had failed the test prior to meeting with us, however after meeting with them, teaching them and them both coming to church, BOTH OF THEM PASSED! So they are both staying! What a blessing from Heavenly Father and hopefully they recognise it to. But they are both really fun people, working towards getting them baptized this month for C…… and getting E……….. on a date (for baptism of course!)

Went to a Fish n chips place on the coast!

Wednesday was THE BEST day ever. Because of something that I have always wanted to happened, really happened. My good friend elder Ferrell (who I came out with from the MTC) and my old companion elder Liss, came up from Huddersfield to do exchanges with us on Wednesday. And I went with elder Ferrell, the first time getting to work with him and we had so much fun. We tried as many things possible to get Chinese people interested. We sang for people, we got people to sing for us, we took selfies with the students, all sorts of things and it worked. It was really successful. It was like the funniest day ever! And we got to meet our member L………, C………, B……, and C……., all at the same time, it was a party! Oh boy such a fun day. Elder Ferrell is such a good missionary, I really do pray and hope that one day we will be able to serve with each other. Fun times.
Entrance to Chinatown

For our investigators:
C……M……- he is an awesome kid, easily our most solid investigator. He studies video game making and is the nicest person ever. He loves meeting with us and even came to church, he is scheduled for the first of October for baptism. He is so fun to teach so let's see what happens with him.
D……….- shy Chinese girl but loves to come to activities. So she is a little bit apprehensive about the whole church thing but, this week we got her to pray for here first time ever in our lesson. I love hearing people's first prayers, so simple but so powerful. 
I……….- well he has been on holiday for the past week but he is doing good, we taught him about commandments and he had no problem with them. So we are hoping that it goes smoothly with him. 
J……………- this week we found J………… he is a new student here from Taiwan. We met him on Tuesday and then taught him on Friday and he is awesome. We taught him the first lesson and he came to church this week and had a really good time, so we are excited to start working with him. What helped was this week we had a baby blessing for one of the longstanding members in the branch and they brought Loads of food to church, not just food, but loads of Chinese food! Ahhhhh soooo good it was like the best thing ever.
A……….- she is our shy friend, taught her again and well it was... Interesting, but nevertheless still progressing, slowly but surely.
Then we have more gators but for the sake of time I will have to share about them later!

A thing for Queen Elizabeth
 This is where the title of my email comes into play (Service really does pay off). So this week was moving week for all the students because their contract ends and so a lot of our members had to move from their accommodations. And the problem is, these Chinese students are really posh, they buy tons of stuff ! So we have helped move 3 or our members this week, and we got lucky. So when Chinese students get here, they buy loads of stuff, like loads and when they go home they all have 1 suitcase so they just toss everything they have bought in the rubbish. Hundreds of pounds worth of stuff, it's crazy. The first guy V………., he had loads of food that he couldn't take, so we inherited like 6 bags of Chinese groceries and whole bunch of sports equipment from him too! It has been Chinese food all week! Then we helped moved our friend B….., and after moving him he took us to this really really Posh Chinese restaurant. It was really good, and really spicy! Then he came teaching with us, so it was a day with B………. But you never know what blessing you might get from doing service, whether it be spiritual or temporal, or if it comes now or later. However we do know that "when ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are only in the service of our God."

With one of the members in our branch

Since the school year has officially ended here and the new year doesn't start up till the end of September. Our members and most of our investigators have gone home, or on vacation. So we are back to square one: finding. But when they get back it will be a sweet reunion. If there is one thing I have learned this week is to not complain. Not complain about the weather, or the language, or how tired you are, complaining never changes it! So when you are about to complain about something think of this,
"Don't complain about a situation, CHANGE the situation."

Thank you all for your prayers and support! I feel so lucky to have people at home supporting me, they are definitely felt here in England. I love you all and home you have a wonderful week.
Elder Hanks 韓長老

Aug 29 2016
My motivation wall!
Wow can I just say how different Newcastle is. Holy moly this place is massive! And boy are there a ton of Chinese people, haha so funny me and elder Zheng got into a debate not an argument but a debate about how all Asian people look the same. And he tried to debate the other way that all "foreigners" in translation all look the same. But I totally won the debate by the way just so that it clear and I think that most of you would agree with me! But hey this week started out really fun. Also I need to apologize my emails are getting longer and longer I hope I am not boring you guys, however whether your bored or not lets get started shall we!!?:)

Sunday: my companion making people cry! So let me tell you how sweet my companion is. So on Sunday we do a mini fireside for some of the members (whoever wants to come really) anyways we were trying to decide what we were going to teach for it that night. And he chose tithing, something I am not too familiar with in Chinese. But elder Zheng let me start and then he took over! By the end of the lesson there was not a dry eye in the room! (Sisters in the ward mainly) guys my companion got people to cry about a Commandment of giving money!?! How does that happen!? I still have no idea because I didn't understand a lot of it, but yeah soooo cool!

Ruins of an old castle
Chinese update: so my Chinese is slowly progressing. Elder Zheng has to keep reminding me to be patient because sometimes I get mad that I don't understand much. But he helps a ton and I am staring to understand more and be able to say more, so keep praying I can get this down people, cause I need it. But I love Chinese it's sooo fun!!

P-Day: Wow Newcastle p-days are the best. Because there are like 6 teams that work in Newcastle alone there are always a ton of missionaries at the chapel on p-day, and even more come from around the area because it's so close! So for this last p-day we almost had the whole zone together and it wasn't even Zone P-day! We just messed around all day, emailed home, played loads of SPORTS and what not it was sooo fun. 
My rad companion! 

Wednesday: We had a really cool lesson with this guy named I…..! And it started out with me teaching him a little bit of English and then he taught me some Chinese, but then we got into the lesson and he was so intrigued by it, it was awesome and we scheduled him for October 1st (because he goes to China for 2 weeks) but way cool lesson. Then we had another lesson with one of our investigators I……. And man did the guy have a ton of questions we covered like everything, to Who is Jehovah? What is the Apostasy? Where are the Plates? Why Joseph smith? So many questions, that I have never heard a Chinese person ask before, but he liked it all and then on top of that we taught the Word of Wisdom which is normally a bit hard to accept for Chinese people, but I……..says this, méi wèntí, kêyî zuò! (No problem, I can do it) so that was also really good! Wednesday was a really good day for us.

M……: we got this really cool guy named M…... He is so cool he is studying to be a video game designer and he is such a lad. We taught him the first lesson and scheduled him for baptism, and he committed to come to church on Sunday and guess what........ He totally came! Ahhhhhhh sooo cool! So that was a cool miracle! We will be meeting him again this week and I am so excited.
Ahhhh!  The ocean!
 Thursday: We will keep the names secret for this one. But today was officially labelled most awkward lesson  day. Now we had a lesson Thursday night with this Chinese girl and from the very start me and elder Zheng knew it was going to be a rough one. During the lesson we tried to make the lesson as fun as possible by asking all sorts of questions. This poor girl said a total of like 3 words the whole lesson. Sometimes I wondered if she was breathing, ah bless her. She is such a quiet, tender soul! I have never met someone so quiet, not even a shy quiet, she stares right at you, but doesn't say anything. Ahhhh it was so awkward haha but a good experience, now I know how seminary teachers somewhat feel like.

Saturday: Saturday was flipping sweet because we went to the coast for a branch activity. It was awesome we took the train right to the coast and we brought out investigator D…… with us, and we all got some proper Fish n' Chips, they were sooo good. And I got to see the ocean for the first time in a long time and walked on the sand, but we got some weird looks from people because it was two guys in white shirts and ties on the beach! Hahaha the life of a missionary. and also I got to see my first like legit castle, or at least what is left of a castle. It was sooo cool! Haha but it truly is amazing here in England I love it here! 
Then to end it all off, this week at church was so awesome. We had two of our members leaving this week to go back home to China, so they both bore their testimonies about the gospel. And I only understood a little bit, but they both talked about how learning about the gospel and Heavenly Father has changed their lives forever. It was so amazing to see the change in people especially people who have had no concept of God ever in their lives, bear powerful witnesses of his reality! Truly amazing, the spirit was so strong, loads of tears were shed in that little sacrament meeting. Then we taught the gospel principles lesson in church, and we did all on the life of Jesus Christ. And it went really well and the best part about it was out of the 20 people in the class 10 of them were investigators!! What soooo awesome! I love being a Chinese elder! This is the best calling in the world, there is no place I'd rather be. Love you all, hope you all have a wonderful week with school now in session whether it's yourself, your kids, or no one at all, just enjoy yourselves okay!

Elder Hanks 韓長老
Sent from my iPad

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