Tuesday, October 18, 2011

P-day on Tueday?

Hello everyone,

Apparently I forgot to mention last week that our p-day was moved to Tuesday this week because we had a conference in Zilina yesterday.

Elder Zabriskie and I had a stellar week this week. It was "Our Week" and we stretched ourselves to speak 100 hours of Slovak and develop some Christlike attributes. I'm excited to carry the energy over to this week!

Shout outs:
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!! 51! Whew! I gave a talk on "Love" that Sunday and I gave you a shout out for the branch. They love you, and I love you!
Congrats Carter Sorenson on the marriage not to long ago. I'm a little hurt I never heard about the engagement, but what can you do. (thank you Sis. Halbert for relaying that tidbit of info:) All the best!
ps I got a bunch of letters from the conference, (catherine, no worries, I got your typed letter:) But know that you can continue sending letters to my Kosice address. I get them faster. Only packages need to be sent to the mission home in Prague. And as far as packages go I like Doritos and music ;)

Our people are doing great. The new converts are getting ready for the temple trip this weekend. Everyone is SO excited! They are going to grow so much as a result.
We've recently found some new young people that we're excited about meeting this week. More on them later, too soon to tell.

The conference was fantastic (as always) and it was amazing to me that President, the APs and the ZLs all hit the nail on the head in terms of what I felt I needed to hear. The work is definitely inspired.
Among other things, President shared a story that I think is worth repeating. It's one about coincidences (or, how he puts it, an instance where God wants to remain anonymous) and I LOVE stories about coincidences. I'll tell it like he did, because it made sense that way:
There are 4 major players in the story.
1) The mission President in the London South Mission. President Irwin has served as a counselor in that mission for 7 years under 3 presidents. He happens to be very good friends with this President. Put him on the shelf, we'll get back to him.
2) one young man from Malaysia who speaks Malaysian, Chinese and English. A little over two years ago he put in his papers to serve a mission. He got called to serve in the London South Mission speaking Chinese. He's visa work was delayed and the missionary department shifted his date back several weeks. When his visa for England finally ar5rived it was for 25 months, not the usual 24. Put him on the back burner, we'll get back to him.
3) Sister Anderson (remember her from the MTC days??) had spent the last 5 years studying Mandarin Chinese in high school and later at BYU. She was a little confused and a little disappointed that she was called to a Czech speaking mission, not a Chinese one. But she's put in all of her effort to learn Czech. She just got transferred to Prague, leaving a city she feel in love with. Put her to the side. We'll come back to her.
and finally
4) a young man from China who moved to Prague to help at his parents restaurant. He speaks no English and no Czech. Just Mandarin Chinese.

Who's put all the pieces together yet?

The young man from China was working in the restaurant and he wanted to learn English. Someone told him that if he wants to learn English, go to the Mormons. (We have free classes everywhere.) The young guy goes to English where he meets Sister Anderson. She knows just enough Chinese to talk to him, get to know him and put him at ease. Over time they give him Chinese church materials. He becomes obsessed and asks for more and more. The Sisters don't know what to do with him, as they can't really teach him. President Irwin hears about it, and knowing the London South mission has Chinese speaking missionaries, decides to call his friend in London. That Mission President has a home way out in the country. Away from the city and mission office. Enter the missionary from Malaysia. He had a meeting with his President at his house. He was nearing his 2 year mark, but he was meeting with his President because he just felt that he should stay til the end of his visa, one extra month. He said he didn't know why, but thought he should. Cue President Irwin's phone call. They decide that this Elder from Malaysia would "meet" with this guy from China via Skype. Over the next couple weeks they met over skype where this young man learned and was able to communicate and bear his testimony to people who understood him. When the Elder's visa was up after 4 weeks after the initial meeting his Mom came from Malaysia to pick him up and they stopped in Prague where the Elder baptized this young man from China last Saturday.
I love coincidences.

We're doing good, working hard and trying to wrap our heads around how quickly this transfer has flown by. The entire district is terrified of transfers- we don't want to leave. But I know that the Lord will put me where he needs me. I just have to work hard and be willing to do His will. Then the miracles happen.

I love you all!
elder williams

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