Sunday, July 27, 2014

July 20, 2014

The weeks in the mission are going by quick I must say. Certainly
trying to make the best them. This week was a bit tough. Many of our
investigators such as Denny, Veronica, and Kylee have kind of faded a
little bit.

I remember telling you guys about Denny. He is very Keen to learn
however he isn't consistent with his appointments and with coming to
church. We call, we text, he doesn't seem to respond. Veronica still
seems interested. She has asked us to come back at the beginning of
August... Not to sure how to take that but apparently she is very busy
and the family that is currently staying with them will be gone by
then. I don't know if I will be around by then because transfers are
not coming this week, but next, and you never know where the Lord is
going to send you. I am kind of hoping I get to go up North.
Apparently there is more scenery, I have spent my whole mission so far
in the suburbs that are close to the City. However going up North
means less people, and then I will probably want to go back to the
city where there are lots of people to talk to. We will continue to
try and teach her. Kylee still seems interested in learning, I think
we are going to ease off on the visits a bit, to make them a bit more
appreciated, even when she isn't home and we bump into family and
friends at the door, and that can be a bit repetitive at times. None
the less we will be getting her to church some time soon! Howard has
been difficult to communicate with. We came Sunday morning to invite
him to church, only got to spoke with his mother who is a less active,
or inactive I guess you could say. She didn't seem interested, and
wasn't to keen on talking with us. So none the less what I like to say
is "you haven't seen them until you finally talk to them."

We did make contact with Lee. I think I mentioned her in one of the
first e-mails I sent home when I came on my mission. She has been
difficult to keep in touch with her. We finally saw her and she still
is keen on learning more. The difficultly has been communication with
her. She can only text, and we didn't have cell phones so we couldn't
do that. but now it is very easy to keep in touch and we have a lesson
planned out for tomorrow. Should be awesome! So there is a miracle
their for sure!

Fa came to church this Sunday! Very exciting he is doing great and he
is the most motivated person I have seen, and taught. He was able to
have a co-worker fill in for him Sunday so he could come to church
without having to pull a sickie. He enjoyed it for sure, and stayed
for all 3 hours. We taught him a lesson on fasting because it is
something that he could use to help him fix the Wow issue. The Chinese
Elders where there as well translating what we taught to a home stay
that the members invited and brought to church. So that was a bit
different but yet cool. Fa is doing so well because of that fellowship
he has from the Tuah'ho family. They care for him, and pretty much do
most of the work for us! They are always bearing their testimonies,
and encouraging him to stay strong. Wish that I could send pictures of
all the people that we taught so it could be a bit more than just
words, but certainly will take a picture of the Baptism. The only
concern there is that Fa doesn't live in our designated Proselyting
area. So the Zone Leaders explained that he may need to get baptized
in his area or talk with the missionaries there. So we will have to
see what happens. But when he attends church for the 3rd time and
makes that commitment to attend church as often as he can, and aligns
himself with the word of wisdom, he will be ready to make that first
promise. We are excited for Fa. Truly a privilege to teach him and be
there to support him.

Went on a trade off this week. I was with Elder Loffahagen form the
UK. We had an Opportunity to serve a Croatian Catholic Senior man. We
where walking on the side walk and saw him messing with and engine
lift jack. We asked if we could help with anything, and it turns out
he need help lifting his TV on top of a taller stand so he would have
to put so many pillows under his head. He was going to take apart the
jack so he could take it up stairs and use it because he could not
lift up there himself. He was very grateful, he praised Jesus a little
bit, continued to talk up a storm about us helping him. We couldn't
share much but we did leave him with a Book of Mormon, probably not to
keen however there may be miracles down the line! He was a real cool
guy. had been living in New Zealand for 40 years. Has been a mechanic,
and some really cool things in his garage, like a fully auto-matic
home built go cart. I snapped a quick pic, and we then had to go. Real
great guy.

So in the meeting with President and Sister Balli while interviews
where happening we got some news about the purpose of a missionary
changing a little bit. There are 5 Lessons that we teach our
investigators. Before the change we taught the first 4 lessons, The
Restoration, The Plan of Salvation, The Gospel of Christ, and the
Commandments. After Baptism we teach Lesson 5, Laws and Ordinances.
That talks about the Temples, Church Organization, Eternal Marriage,
Missionary Work, and also teaching in the Church. We now teach lesson
5 before baptism so that way the investigators have a vision of what
is to come in the future with being a member of the Church. I think
that it is a fantastic change and that it will certainly help out with
convert retention. We are now working out how we will teach these
things in the First 4 lessons. For example what could we include in
the Restoration. Or maybe the Plan of Salvation we could talk a bit
about the temples and how they work into it. Also generally after
missionaries teach the investigators, they then hand them over to the
Ward to take care of them and continue to teach. Missionaries now have
a stronger focus on bringing Less Actives back and also retaining the
recent converts. Anyways all very cool and exciting. This is a change
for all missionaries in the World. Now we just got to find people to
teach. Because if I am honest, I have not taught very many keen people
on my mission, all though New Zealand is very religious, the adversary
does have a strong grip on them. They are often quite stuck in their
ways and aren't to keen on learning. Nothing Happens in Missionary
work until you find someone to teach!

So personally I am doing fine. All of my physical needs are well taken
care of. Elder Rogers and I have had KFC this week 2 times this
week.... They really do love their KFC here, however since getting the
car I have tried to mindful about not stuffing my self with food, and
drinking more water and less juice. It rains heaps here. Just about
every day. you certainly learn the meaning of "good" and "bad weather"
here in New Zealand. None the less I do still like the rain. I am
starting to study other things in the scriptures. Like sotries from
the Old Testament, and New of Course. I am reading through D&C and NT.
I have tried waking up early however that doesn't work to well. You
are often tired the rest of the day, and also your companion needs to
wake up as well. rulz. But my studies are going good. Scriptures are
great to know inside and out. Oh, and Stuart needs to be reading the
BoM, because that is very important! He is preparing to go and I don't
want him to leave with out getting some good advice and understanding,
and that is one of the best things that he can do. All right so I hope
things go well with the Eagle Project of Course. Work hard and get it
done! Hope you guys are doing well and I appreciate your letters!

-Love Elder Ward

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