Monday, September 19, 2016

Wowza what a week!

Sept 19 2016

Hello again everyone. Sorry for last weeks email, I forgot the pictures and didn't have much time to email. But this one is better so I hope that this makes up for last weeks email. So let's try and get it all covered shall we.

This week started off wonderfully on Monday, when we had ourselves a zone BBQ and let me tell you that was some fun! I will show you the pictures this time, but there was about £70 worth of meat alone, and then all the other good stuff. It was really good - me and the Zone Leader Elder Stirling we were the grill masters of the day! It was sooo fun - lots of food, tons of sports good laughs and good gospel music! But then the day got even better when we took one of our investigators to FHE after P-day and it was absolutely hilarious!  They did the lesson, and then had some food and then we played a game. But the person in charge of the game didn't show up, so I taught them how to play signs! And ooh wow, how fun! Chinese people choose the funniest signs ever-  oh wow so good ! Monday was just like the best day ever.


On Thursday of this week we did exchanges with the other Mandarin Elders, Elder Lui and Elder Jensen. I went with elder Lui and it was so fun-  we had a ton of fun on our exchange. The entire day was all about inviting people to our branch activity on Friday. So it was really fun, we would just walk up and say, in Chinese of course, "Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!" And it surprised so many people that we knew what that was, so we invited sooooo many people to come to our activity and we had tons and tons of success. That day we found 7 people so that was really sweet. Also up here in Newcastle I tend to meet a lot of people from Singapore and Malaysia so it really helps having had my older brother serve there, because now I can talk a little bit with them about their home and it helps out a ton! But yeah Thursday was a really good day for us. All together we found 10 people in one day so that is really really cool!

Friday was one crazy crazy busy day! So normally of Friday's we have weekly planning and that's it, but not this Friday. This Friday we had weekly planning and District meeting with president and Sister Turvey. It was really fun to have president in a small meeting like that too,  where he can interact with you more, and they really enjoyed hearing the Chinese part of things too. President Turvey is huge on languages, he just loves them. There in that meeting,  we found out that in our mission there are only 12 Chinese speakers in the whole mission. And six of them are in Newcastle! So it made me feel really privileged to be a Chinese speaking missionary. And no one is coming in for a whole year so we are all going to be with each other for a really long time! Haha which I don't mind. Then after that we had to get ready for our Branch Activity that us missionaries practically put together to get people to come to. And it went really well we had about 30 people there and no joke 18 of them were investigators and non members! WHAT!!?? I know sooo good it was awesome! Let me tell you Chinese people know what it means to bring food, they brought like the best food ever, ooohhhhhhh so good!

Sunday was a fun day for us as well. So this Sunday a lot of fun things happened. The first being that in Newcastle they have this massive monument in the middle of their town. So this morning while we were in town waiting for our investigators to bring them to church, we found out that the New transformers was being filmed at the monument so when it comes out,  look for me! Jk I wasn't in it. But still cool because that doesn't happen every day. Then at church elder Zheng and I were teaching Gospel Principles class and we decided to teach about the Holy Ghost and its role. So it turns out it was just me teaching because elder Zheng wanted to test my Chinese. So in order to make it fun for these Chinese students, so that they like church. I came up with an idea to use chairs to create "life's obstacles" - each chair had a challenge that Chinese students face here, and we had one person act like the spirit and had to whisper to someone who was blindfolded to represent us, and to guide them through the chairs.  We had things like "media" "friends" "school" and other things to distract them from the spirit. Then we taught about baptism and how we can receive the gift of the Holy Ghost and have him as a companion by our side, and our "Holy Ghost" then by his side led him through the chairs. Hopefully it left a clear impression to all the investigators and members of the blessing of the Holy Ghost. I thought that it went well. Then that night we had a party with all the extra food from our activity, and we had chocolate cake and ice cream to celebrate the start of the last week of the transfer!

Then a quick little spiritual thought for you all: A quote from Neil A. Maxwel,
"God does not begin by asking us about our Ability,
but only about our Availability,
and then if we prove our Dependability,
he will increase our Capability."
Our Heavenly Father Already knows our weaknesses, knows our strengths. He simply asks us to give more time to our callings, our families, those in need, and those around us. And to be patient in all we do, something I am greatly working on is Patience. Please be patient, and allow yourself some time to do something more for the Savior, so that he can then do something more for you.

Love you all and have a wonderful week.

Elder Hanks韓長

Sept 12, 2016

This week started off amazing!!!! Wow what fun! Well family sorry,  I am just not coming home anymore, not after these two weeks, I am going to stay here forever! In the best mission in the Universe. But let's go through this AMAZING week shall we!?:)

Monday: so Monday was pretty chill, not much happened on Monday except for we got 3 of our investigators to come to FHE! So that was really awesome we had, T......, S......., and J...... all come. I was most excited about J......... coming. So that was really good but then we had to say bye to another member B...... who went home this Wednesday, so sad that everyone is leaving! 

Tuesday: Well Tuesday was Amazing! We had our First Zone conference with President Turvey and his are so different. Normally the meeting was held in the chapel, with the podium with president Pilkington.
However with president Turvey,  we should up, and the chapel was empty. In the gym however there was a massive circle of tables set up with a music stand in the middle. With president Turvey presiding, it was so much more interactive! Really different and really good. I had to give our purpose for the conference-  again! Like the 3rd time doing it at zone conference. I must be good at it or something? Jk but I did have to do some push ups at ZC, when we were showing some of our door knocking approaches, that got everyone laughing which was good. But my favorite thing that I got from conference was regarding Tea appointments .........   after zone conference we had a teaching appointment, tea appointments are now called "teaching appointments" to always remind us our purpose behind the food. But then we had a lesson with our investigator D......... and we were able to schedule her for baptism on Oct 8th.

So story time: While we were having a lesson with D......., a very interesting thing occurred. We we had just taught  the plan of salvation and we were then scheduling her for baptism. During the process the opposing force of all good tried to stop us, by sending two drunk men to us. Who stunk like drugs and alcohol and made fun of everything we stood for! It was terrible - the worst timing ever!
NEVERTHELESS Good/ God will always prevail, because the two men that interrupted our lesson, were Geordie! Which means the thickest accent in England (extremely hard to understand) so I was the only one who could understand what they were saying! So D.......... knew that they were saying bad things but the blessing was she didn't understand it! So it had little to no effect on her, or elder Zheng-  really only me. So we were still able to help her set a goal for baptism, I love being on His side!

Haha well we had a fun day on Wednesday. We had some fun lessons and were able to get some new investigators. So the first lesson was with this really sweet guy named R........ He was asking so many good
questions! He was so into it, it was awesome. Unfortunately he goes home next week and so we won't be able to teach him anymore!:( but elder Zheng got his email and so they are going to keep talking about his questions and the gospel.  Then we met with T.........., in a coffee shop. And we taught him about the restoration and then scheduled him as well for the 24th of September because he goes home on the 28th. So we need a miracle with him.
Then we met with this Taiwanese girl named T........... She is awesome and we had a member R....... with us and they got along really well. So we were able to schedule her for the 8th of October. It was a really good day for us!

Won't run you through everyday but to say the least about Thursday and Friday they were just normal days of finding not much happened, except we got flogged one lesson which hasn't happened for a while but,  oh
well moving on. So to make up for it me and elder Zheng decided that we were going to make Oreo Milkshakes! So we got all the stuff that we needed and we got out the blender. And we starting mixing and the next thing we knew it was all coming out the bottom of the blender!  All of our stuff on to the floor, it was so depressing-  goodness we had a lot to clean up but,  luckily enough even with the spill,  we were still able to get two little cups worth of our shake, haha sadly this is not the first time this has happened to me! 

This was a good day as well we had 3 lessons on Saturday and they went pretty well. We met with T......again and taught him the plan of salvation, he seemed to have enjoyed it, but he just won't give us time for church. We tried so hard to convince him to come but his friend was coming in from somewhere so he didn't come this week. Hopefully we will get him next week. Then we also taught our  quiet friend. She is getting better she is talking more and more which is good. But we were talking about faith, and gaining a desire to know more and how it will make her happy. So we asked her what makes her happy. And you would never guess what she said.......   CONCERTS!? of all things, this shy girl loves concerts, like the loudest and craziest thing ever! Hahaha WHAT?!! Anyways but that was a pretty good lesson and we had to recommit all of them to read and pray because that is a big problem for lots of people, they just don't bother with it. Church okay, reading and praying no! Then we taught our other friend named R...... who is also pretty quiet, but we were able to teach him lesson 3 and it went well, but we are working with him to increase his faith right now so slowly but surely! Anyways yeah that was our day, pretty

darn good day.

That was our week, hope all is well with you all.
Take care

Elder Hanks

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