Monday, February 11, 2013

February 11, 2013 (Hualian)

Dear everyone,

One of the most exciting things that happened this week is that my cute little ABC-from-Boston, Angela, got baptized!!! She is such a rockstar! She does her personal progress (!!), gave a talk in church, cried in her testimony (and told me she used the phrase "haters gonna hate" multiple times in it - haha) and recommended a conference talk for me to read/watch. Yeah, she blows me away! You guys would love her. I'm so grateful I could meet her and start sharing the gospel with her. She's the best.

This week, we had our zone meeting. The zone leaders asked me to share an experience to pump everyone up about finding miracles and having baptisms, probably because I need to strengthen my faith that the Lord really does have prepared people out there. And I shared about Yin Ru, who I met in Zhong Li, and I really loved being able to think back on that experience and how prepared she was and how all the experiences she was having in her life were preparing her to receive the gospel. I felt a sacred feeling as I was talking about her. I know that God helped me meet her and I also know that Heavenly Father is real and He is literally our Father, who loves us. I"m so grateful for my mission and the things I've been learning. This experience is so valuable to me.

I had a new sister here on exchanges with me this week and we got to teach the Chen family who we haven't had a chance to meet with forever because they've been out of town. We taught them the Restoration and explained what the Book of Mormon is, because we still haven't. I love teaching them because they are so earnest and their desire is palpable. I tried to make sure I strongly extended the invitation for them to read and pray about the Book of Mormon, and they firmly and willingly commited to do it. I'm so excited to hear what they think. It's so great all the things we can promise investigators, because they come from God and not from us. The Book of Mormon is totally true, and we can read it and pray about it and get an answer. And God knows us, so He knows how to answer our prayers in a way that will let us personally know that it is true. I do know the Book of Mormon is true.

We also met with our young women, Zi Yao. She's doing good. She reading and praying, but hasn't come to church yet. Working on that.

Because of Chinese new year, our finding has had a lot of people from out of town, which is still great. We did find some good elder referrals this week, though.

PS, Niels, you rockstar, doing all the zone invites.

This week, we also went out contacting with the young women. We were unsure on the details of this activity and when we got to the church, there were six young women there. Me and Du jiemei couldn't separate, so we basically ended up not contacting very much, in order to keep all the girls in sight and sound. But we had the girls split into companionships and then helped them contacting. Actually, we went tracting. They were really cute and funny. Once, one of the girls hesitantly rang a doorbell and then ran a few feet back from the door, squeling and nervous. So, yes, it was really funny doing missionary work with them.

This week, Chinese New Year's started. Fun for everyone besides the missionaries. No, it's actually really fun for us, too. I've been eating SO MUCH. The members are providing every meal and since the sisters cover two branches, sometimes we try to go to two meals, in order to have a member visit and share a spiritual messagae. Saturday - got fed lunch (those members were trying to convince me and the elder we were with to get married - we are not at all compatible, more on that later), after that, our mm leader brought doughnuts to mm meeting, then we went to a dinner appointment at a big Buddhist event thing (really cool, but stressful because they were interviewing us and asking us what we knew about the event which was basically nothing), and then went to another's member's house to say hi and they made us eat more. Niels, cracked up about you and your comp putting food on each other's plates. The elders kept making comments like, "Oh, Sister Christensen hasn't eaten the pig's foot yet" and then the hostess is like, "Oh, here! Eat one!" But I somehow avoided it. But, yeah, best game ever. Anyway, then last night we went to our brach president's house (the loud one who I get along really well with) and he and another member there were asking me if I'd marry a taiwanese guy, and I was like, "No way. Language barrier." And then they went OFF on all these Taiwanese guys I could marry, including the poor little shy recent new convert I was sitting next to (he felt way uncomfortable) and ended off with the same missionary the members teased me about the day before. Then we did a lesson about how the Book of Mormon answers allllll our questions and of course President Pan's first question was, "Why does Cen jiemei (me) not like Taiwanese men?" We did find a lot of good scriptures to answer that, haha. Also, I LOVE Taiwanese people, for the record.

Also, my clothes so ugly. The other day, our mm leader was telling us we needed to dress nice for this dinner and I was like, "Yeah, okay, impossible..." and Elder Miller was like, "Sister Christensen, that skirt is actually one of my favorites of yours." And I was like, "Really??" And then he just smiled and nodded, the way Niels does when I ask him if my outfit makes me look fat. That skirt is the one that used to be a dress, that I cut into a skirt and now the elastic is huge and I have to clip it on the side for it to fit. Yeah, classy.

Yesterday in church, I sat next to a little boy who yell-singed. It was so cute. And the best was that he wasn't even trying to be cute or cool or funny - he just sang like that. It made me think of going to church with Steve and Ariel. Steve always sings really loud and it makes Ariel kind of embarrassed but we all secretly love it.

Oh, man, totally out of time. Love you all soooo so so much.


contacting with the young women. So many peace signs. Also, all the girls clustered at one door - really happened. Poor person being contacted.
Chinese new year celebrations
Us with a potential investigator - a member's niece.

Uncle Phil - Thanks for the email! I'm excited to check out your profile!
Danny - Also loved hearing from you and I"m also excited to check out your profile! How's the new baby?
Crachel- cutest names ever in the whole world. Oh, man! You guys! Cutest. Thanks for the email; I know you're crazy busy.
Kjirsten - Thanks for your letter!!!! It was so honest and beautiful. I have been re-reading it. I'm so excited to talk to you for a really long time when I get home.
Kayla. write me. heart you.
Cousin Addison, thanks for the email you sent. Love you!
Erin. thanks. wrote you!

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