|This is an amazing Garden in NTK area call Nan Lian garden, which is designed in the Tang Dynasty style art of landscaping, and is literally one of the most beautiful, peaceful places I've been in. We went there my last P-Day.|
|Elder Black, my new companion.|
|A cool community garden under our house.|
I am no longer in NTK! I really had been hoping to stay but instead was sent to literally the farthest away place in the mission, a new ward called Castle Peak Bay, Ching Saan Wan. The name is a bit unfortunate, because there is a famous (or should I say, infamous?) mental hospital called Ching Saan, Castle Peak. It is next to our area, but you have to be really careful emphasizing the bay part of the name, or you'll tell people that you serve the mental hospital. But it’s okay, because this area is amazing! The ward, when it split, basically stole all the awesome members, so the leadership here is really really good. And the area here is so beautiful. I don't know if it's just that I've become accustomed to the dull drab of Kwun Tong, but every time I look out a window I have to stop and tell everyone, woh, jan haih hou leng wo! My new companion Elder Black is probably getting sick of hearing that.
More on Elder Black, he is a relatively new missionary of 6 months, he is incredibly positive and humble, and though his Chinese is not amazing and his teaching skills still need polishing, I am often impressed by how positive he is. There are a lot of families here in our area (the whole feel is much more relaxed, comfortable, and wholesome) and it takes some courage to try to stop a whole family, never mind share the gospel with them, but Elder Black takes it all in stride.
As you may have guessed, I am his senior companion, which has been slightly weird but super fun. I feel a lot of hope right now for getting both of us teaching really powerfully, and I feel that now I can really put those desires into action. I am not the best missionary, nor am I the most diligent, but I would say that my tolerance for laziness, inefficiency, or disobedience is very low. So it is fun to be senior and sort of enforce that. Not that I'm totally controlling everything...
Beyond being senior, I am also now District Leader over one of the largest districts in our mission, 10 people (though 2 are the Zone Leaders, so that's a bit different). That has actually been super stressful but very fun. I had to schedule 4 people to do numbers on Sunday as well as a baptismal interview (who passed!), and our church here starts at 1:30, and we had Ward Council before church, so I literally did not have any time scheduled for meals the whole day. Luckily it was Fast Sunday, and my companion made me some dinner that I ate during numbers. While you were all eating ham and au gratin potatoes, I was eating rice with a ramen pack mixed in, hot dogs, and a cold can of Chickapees. I tell no lie.
So it's been cool! And even cooler was that Elder Ballard came and visited Hong Kong, and we had 2 chances to hear him speak, once to us as missionaries, once in an all member meeting. It was amazing. He actually sort of censured our mission for being a bit too shy and not powerful enough teachers, and gave a ton of amazing instruction. His member meeting was also amazing, he basically taught PMG lesson one and two in the most natural way I've seen it done. It's cool, because it’s almost like there are 2 Elder Ballards. There is the 86 year old man who's nice and funny and likes cracking jokes at people but may get a bit confused at times, and then there's the Apostle, the power of the Holy Ghost, and the prophetic mantle shining through him giving us the Lord's message. I can sincerely testify, I know that that man is an Apostle of the Lord.
I have two questions about your future. 1) When are you going to run for president? 2) If dance is a minor, what are you considering for a major? I know you love reading and writing and speaking, so you could do something related to literature or debate or politics (nudge nudge wink wink) or English. Lots of options for one who gets straight A's. I'm still not used to you having Trimesters.
Have you had any chance to go to the temple recently? I know that you had a super good goal a couple months ago, just not sure if you kept it up. I mean, if you want to find a pretty lady for me you need the promptings of the spirit, and reading, prayer, church, temple, and being righteous are how you get them. Hey, you can almost start taking Abby with you! That'd be super cool.
I've been reading the Book of Mormon over again recently, I'm now in Mosiah, but I just read about Jacob. In chapter 7 he confronts an Anti-Christ, and basically destroys him with a) the scriptures b) personal testimony and c) the power of God. I think that it was a good reminder for me that we can't wait till then to get those things, you need to prepare.
Thanks for the housing arrangements. I may be used to living on my own but I'm also used to having you here to deal with all my financial and legal needs. I'll have to hire a personal secretary to replace you when I grow up. But they won't make lunch for me or send me loving packages...
So as I said I moved. Here's a funny thing that you can tell Eva. In our apartment is Elder Black and Elder White, and they are both named 白長老. She'll get it.
I will try to get President Hawks on it today. Sorry I don't have any pictures, I forgot my camera cord back home. If I have time I'll try to send some. Love you, and thank you for your amazing example to me!
As I said my food for the past couple days has not been impressive. I have been eating a lot of butter cookies because that's what we have at our apartment. I also had some ramen, which I haven't had in months, because it's the only thing here. Our ward gives us TONS of food but none of it is very healthy. We ate some weird orange peal stuff a bit ago, fermented with salt. It's nasty. Have you ever eaten Chick Peas? They taste good if you're starving and doing numbers.
To be totally frank, in the individual battles, Moroni was using strategy. Coordinating multiple units around to fight guys is the perfect example of tactics. Moroni building cities on the borders or pushing the Lamanites out of the Nephite lands and stopping them from getting cut off is strategy, while concealing his men in a valley and cutting off the Lamanite spies is tactics. And to say that fatigue comes into play and makes it strategy is to imply that soccer or football are strategy games. Frozen Synapse is the perfect example of complete tactics. As is chess.
Sounds like your creativity is still going strong. I'd really love for you to develop some sort of Rome Total War game based on the Book of Mormon. I think we all know that that would be the best game ever. Where are you reading in the Book of Mormon recently? Also, I've been studying the lessons really in depth out of Preach My Gospel right now. Have you ever read that? If not I'd recommend reading chapter 3 and 4. They are super cool. Honestly, every chapter in there is good.
The lap of luxury. He sits at the computer clicking buttons, and thousands of dollars roll towards him. He is the demon Nauda from the Bartimaeous books.
I think based off our combined college test credit we'll both be halfway through sophomore year by the time we start. What I said to Rebecca and David applies to you as well.
Your prediction that I'll become District Leader finally came true. I really have been super busy with stuff, but it's really fun. My first District Meeting isn't until next week, but I'm planning on making everyone sing super obscure songs. Unrighteous Dominion!
When I left NTK, Rachel was basically ready to get baptized, (March 8th), We had the 2 older guys Ken and Mr. Chau who really love church and English class, we finally found Brother Lo again. He's had some trials in his family recently but there’s still hope. The 14 year old and her older sister were doing okay, just trying to get them to read, and it's really hard to meet the younger sister because you definitely have to have a fellowshipper there.
In this new ward they just had 2 baptisms, Nicole and A Yung, both of whom are doing pretty well (though I've noticed they all really really really like the former missionary here...), and that's about it. It seems every area I go to has no active investigators when I get there. There are a couple people who are probably good but haven't been to church or in contact since New Year’s, so we'll see. In the meantime, it's been a while since I had some long finding, I'm excited.
I hope we get a chance to go to the cabin together when I get back. I've been praying for your work, I'm sure it'll work out just how the Lord wants it to. I had a chance to share in testimony meeting about my testimony of the Book of Mormon and the story of the king in Alma 22, which is probably my favorite scripture, especially v.15. As I mentioned, I've been really studying what it is the lessons are trying to teach people, and I think that Ammon and Aaron's investigators are great examples of people who learned what they had to, which was that God was real, they could pray with faith, and that God would have mercy on us through Christ. That's what I've been trying to teach people recently.
Yesterday some new investigator named Fong Fong stood us up. The funny thing is that the slang for to stand someone up or not show up is fong fei gei, release airplane. So, Fong Fong Fong ngoh deih Fei Gei. It's funny, I promise.
Love you all, literally, all 6 of you. Seriously, I don't hate even one of you. No, not even Joseph.