1/5/2015 (How is it 2015??)
We went on a P-day hike with a couple of members in our ward! It was super steep- Sister Biancardi guessed it was at least a 45 degree angle or more the whole time. We were hoping to see some monkeys, but they were all sleeping. Next time we will find you monkeys!
We had Zone Training Meeting! I’m in the Gaoxiong East Zone now and it was my first ZTM that wasn’t in Taizhong. Because we live in QiShan, it takes a really long time to get into Gaoxiong for the meeting. We ended up spending over 3 hours on a bus that day. It was really fun to get there and see some other missionaries though. We talked about our mission vision and how last month we hit our overall baptismal goal and had such an incredible white Christmas! We had a little video the Assistants put together that had Elder Holland in it and all of the baptisms from December that made me almost cry a little. I am so grateful to be a missionary right here and right now. There is nothing better than being a Taiwan Taizhong missionary. We discussed the goals for our zone this month. We have really got some cool plans and goals and a lot of faith. We discussed faith in finding, teaching skills and powerful follow ups with investigators. As normal, it was just what we needed. We also had a good sisters meeting where we discussed “Becoming Perfect in Christ” by Elder Gerritt W. Gong. It has become one of my very favorite talks. It has really helped me to see the all-encompassing power of the Atonement.
Every Wednesday is English class! I’m teaching kids class again down here, and I am learning to love it. This last week was pretty rough though. There are two kids that literally just run around and scream for an hour and a half. So we’re working on that. For Spiritual Share, we taught them how to sing I’m Trying to Be Like Jesus and they quieted down for a minute. Even though they’re little and really spazzy, they still felt the Spirit. It was a good reminder and helped me have a little bit more patience.
We had quite the adventure on Thursday. We had set up to meet with a new investigator clear out in ShanLin. ShanLin is one of our secondary areas and I hadn’t ever had the chance to get out there before. It’s a pretty good distance and on the other side of the mountain. Most of the population of ShanLin are aboriginal Taiwanese or Hakka. Some of them speak Mandarin Chinese, but a lot don’t. We went through the Moonlight Mountain tunnel to get over there (yes it felt very “Lord of the Rings”- which I loved) and biked for a good hour. Most everyone we talked to had never even seen a missionary in their lives! We went and met with the investigator out there and taught her about the Restoration. She was really interested and we’re excited to go back! It was worth the ride. While we were over there we did some tracting and met some interesting people and a lot who didn’t speak Chinese. I can say a couple of things in Taiwanese now, but nothing really. So many adventures! This is such an incredible place to be a missionary.
I got to go to Tainan on exchanges with Sister Fernley! It was super great. I learned a whole lot. Honestly, we spent half the time talking about how much we love Sister Murdock! Sister Fernley trained Sister Murdock and we both love her so much! It was so great to be in Tainan and work with Sister Fernley for the day. It was great to be in a big city again and do some good street contacting! I LOVE STREET CONTACTING. I learned a whole lot and had some good famous Tainan food and it was a great change of scenery.
We had a miracle new investigator! She called us up that morning and asked to meet with us!! Normally it’s the other way around haha. It was a super cool miracle. We just talked about prayer. Prayer changes lives! It’s so cool to see the difference that it instantly makes. I’m so grateful for it!
We got to meet with a couple of less active members who told us SO much about how they love their tomatoes yesterday night. It was the best. I have a really large Chinese tomato vocabulary now.
A wonderful week in QiShan! This morning in my personal study, I finished the Book of Mormon again and I just wanted to let you all know that I know that it’s true. The Book of Mormon is the word of God. It was translated by the prophet Joseph Smith through whom the gospel of Jesus Christ was restored. I know that the gospel of Jesus Christ- faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end- is the way to happiness in this life and salvation in the next. I am so glad that I have the chance to share that with people here in Taiwan!