Sunday, July 11, 2010

July 12, 2010

Well, Hello everyone! howdy doody! Rootin tootin pootin lootin ole family still kickin? I don't know why I typed that. oh well. Here I am in a weird looking old internet cafe listening to the sounds of computer games as little asian kids waste their life away. Last saturday was sure an awesome experience. The whole mission gathered together in Taizhong, and it sure was fun to see my old MTC district again. We all had a lot to say to each other about missionary work and how our areas and companions are different. I was happy that most of them had seen baptism in the move call, and were expecting some more this week. haha, it's going to be so good to see what we can all do in two years. We had quite the group of ten missionaries there in my district. Every time I get a referral from one of them I get really happy. Then we took a mission picture with President Uchtdorf, all went inside and were really reverent while we got to shake his hand. It was awesome. President Bishop spoke for a little bit, gave a really solid talk about the doctrine that we are supposed to be teaching. I liked it a lot. It's great because when he interviews you he pulls his glasses up onto his nose and looks at you just like a doctor, and you feel like he's making a diagnosis. Then we heard from the Asia area authority President Perkins. He was amazing. He read out of Alma 16 and talked about how important it was to use the Book of Mormon in teaching. Then sister Uchtdorf spoke and she was so great. She talked about it was so hot in Taiwan (it does get pretty hot. What does 35 C translate into fahrenheit?) and how she admired us so much. Telling us her conversion story and how she answered the door as a little girl and let the missionaries in, and her mother read the Book of Mormon and knew it was true. She also told us the keep our apartments clean and have companionship unity. Then President Uchtdorf stood up and talked to us. He's pretty tall actually. He's a powerful speaker. He told us to follow the spirit. He based a lot of his address on D&C 90:11, and said that we were fulfilling this prophecy and that it was to be fulfilled in our lifetime. and then that we were to follow the spirit, and teach about Jesus Christ. he also told us to not settle for mediocracy. To never level off in learning the language but to strive to speak it as perfectly as possible to deliver the perfect message. He said that we have the ability to learn the language in ways that nobody else does. I also really enjoyed one thing he talked about. He said missions were like a treasure hunt. That got my attention I like treasure hunt. He said the Lord has placed treasures all around you in your mission, and we should seek those treasures. A couple of examples he gave us were President and Sister Bishop were a treasure that the Lord placed here. There are people we will meet that the Lord has placed there as a treasure, in each companionship there are things to learn that are treasures. Treasures in scripture study. He mentioned that overcoming homesickness was a treasure of the mission, and also learning the language and the culture was a treasure. I like that. I hope I can remember it. He also said this about who missionaries were "You are tuly the extended arm of the quorum of the twelve apostles. That is who you are," But I think the very best was when he read Doctrine and Covenants 58:42 and testifies that the Lord really won't remember our mistakes if we repent, and to teach our investigators how to repent, and also the truth that God will forgive. He said that it was Satan's plan to dig up old sins and feel sorry about them, and Satan likes to make us think that we haven't been forgiven. He testified three times in a row saying "I testify in the name of the Lord, that God will forgive." and it was one of the most powerful moments I've ever been in. The spirit was so strong. He said we will remember our own sins as a barrier, to protect us. But it is also a beautiful part of the plan that as we areforgiven and move on we won't be pained by those memories any more.
I'm just real lucky to be able to hear an apostle speak. That's the fourth apostle I've heard so far on my mission. My times almost up. This sunday we have a baptism set up for a kid named yi rong. zhan yi rong. He's rather shy, but just golden. And I really hope that I can find friends for him in the ward that can help him be active and happy member of the ward. One of my favorite ward members is a Brother Gao (means tall) and he is tall and really funny. He reminds me a lot of Scott and it makes me laugh. Well, how's the family doing? Sorry I haven't sent any pictures. I think I might send home a card soon even though it's not full yet because Mom would really like it. Alright, Bubye!
Elder Vernon
p.s. next e-mail will be the end of my first move call. already! I'll probably stay in fengyuan

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