I am so sorry that my last two letters have been so bad. I can’t remember if I have given you an update on my whole-new life so I will do that now....so I am serving in the North Torrance Stake. The Zone covers the whole Stake. So the cities in it are Gardena, Compton, Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, Lawndale, and Torrance. Our area is Lawndale. We had our first Sunday this week!! It’s pretty awesome to be in a ward that is a lot more similar to the ones I grew up in (real life grew up, not mission life) So, in the Zone we have an ASL District, a Spanish District, and an English District. It is also pretty weird serving around Sisters for the first time in my mission life....they scare me. But hey, two missionaries are from Indiana in the Zone and they know Braden’s dad (if his dad was a Stake President). But yeah, the area I am in is super diverse, my companion does a lot of Spanish contacting. I think I will start spending some time to practice Spanish.
So my companion is Elder Larkin, he is from Layton Utah, he is super funny. I feel like I have been on an exchange for the past two weeks it has been so much fun with him. It is so easy to connect with people from America!!! He is 22 and went to West Point so we do a lot of pushups together. It’s funny because we both served together for a long time in International Zone because he was originally Farsi speaking. So both of us have taught non-Christians our entire mission and now we are Zone Leaders over people that teach hard-core Christians and Jehovah Witnesses and all that jazz and we don’t even know Chronicles from Corinthians so, it’s going to be an adventure. But I love the missionaries we serve so much, we are blessed with the most obedient Zone ever!!!
So, Isaac got baptized this Sunday!!! So his dad, Aisake Fukatamafi just barely re-activated, and Isaac, his 9-year old son started to go to Church with him. This was 5 months ago. And Isaac loved it and wanted to be baptized, and since he is over 8 we taught him!! It was the first kid I have ever taught on my mission and it was so much fun!! He really is the coolest little dude. He was so happy his dad got to baptize him too. Aisake, the father, got the Priesthood the Sunday of the baptism. It was just so powerful, Aisake was so overwhelmed the whole time. It made me pretty pumped to be a dad and baptize my kids and it made me so grateful that I had my father baptize me. That is such a big deal!! So many people don’t have that kind of thing in their home. It was awesome to see that.
Oh man, I read Moms letter, that has got to be really tough. I am so happy though that Mom got to go back and spend time with PoPo. It was a huge blessing that I got to Skype with her last Christmas. I know that was a blessing from the Lord. Thanks Mom for writing that letter. I would like to echo Mom’s testimony and say that I know love lasts forever and that every single relationship we have in this mortal existence will continue in the next. We are all spirits that are millennia old and death is just the doorway we pass through to return to our Heavenly Home. One of my fondest memories of Grandma Morgan was when we sang her the song "Oh my Father" in the retirement home (and not because the black orderly came in and complimented our singing) but because of the Spirit I felt while singing it. The Spirit told me that day that I do have Heavenly Parents above waiting for me. I am so sad that we were never able to sing that song to PoPo, but I know that I will have a second chance. I know that to be true. Now, every time I sing the song, "Oh My Father" I think of the people that have passed on already, and I feel anticipation for the day I see all of them and our Heavenly Parents and our Savior Jesus Christ all together. I guess, what more could I ask for.
Sorry that I got all weird, but hey, love you guys a lot!!!
Sorry Family!! I dont have much time to write today. This Sunday, my good friend Xu Chen got baptized. Elder Zhang and I found him about 3 transfers ago. I remember how we met him was a miracle. He was a referrel from some Sisters, and we got a bad number from him, then we go to visit the address on the referrel and no one was there, we knock on the neighbors door and she says they all moved. well, later that week, we felt that we should give the door another chance. and BAM he was home ready to learn!! He really is one of the most innocent kind guys that I have met! He is awesome.Also!! after 20 months in the chinese program I am being booted out. It was like my heart got ripped out when I got the call. I will be a Zone Leader in the Torrance North Area. ahh man, I am a little worried to go English, its a whole different ball game, but I trust in the leaders of the Church that they are called of God. Its a bummer to leave the program, Its hard to be away from it.
|Good-bye to the Chinese District|