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 Caussé 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 Hanks韓長老

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

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