Monday, October 24, 2011

You’ll never guess where I am this week

So I'll just tell you. Yes, true to the guesses by all of you and by myself, I finally got kicked out of Tanzi. I was sad to go, but it had to happen. Elder Larson didn't want me to go, which I'll take as a compliment. :) And now I'm writing to you from...Tainan. Yep, I got sent back to nearly the exact same area as I was in before. Nearly eleven months ago I moved to the Tainan 3rd ward, and now I'm in the 4th ward. Same chapel. Same city. But now I'm a zone leader. Yeah, I got a call from President Bishop on Saturday night at about 10:00 and he asked me to lead the Tainan zone. My companion and fellow zone leader is Elder Steven Braby, who came on island the same time as I did.

I'm actually really excited to be back here and have the chance to see my recent converts, to serve my fellow missionaries, and so forth. I'm pretty nervous because I want to be a good leader and I'm not totally sure what I'm doing. But that's what scriptures and prayer and a companion are for, right? To answer your question, Dad, we don't find out who's moving until Saturday night (under usual circumstances) and then the move happens on Monday. I took the train from Taizhong to Tainan at 10:15 this morning. So yeah, that's the big news on this side of the pond.

So, I actually have several funny stories that all happened this week. The first was on Wednesday when Elder Larson and I were tracting some houses before English Class. We knocked on this door and we saw a guy down the hall take a look at us and then run back behind the wall (he was in a shirt and tighty-whiteys). He came back a few seconds later with pants on and ran to the door, and I could tell right away he was drunk as a skunk. He couldn't even focus his eyes on me. But he started yelling at us, insulting us, and basically acting like a guy trying to pick a bar fight. Finally we both decided to just leave, so we said we welcomed him to church and backed away while he yelled something about how Adam and Eve's kids couldn't have possibly had kids together. So there was him, little ball of sunshine.

Then on Friday we were heading to an appointment with the (name) family at night, and I saw two white people with a little stand of magazines on the corner and they said hello to me, so we turned around to talk to them. Just my luck, they weren't innocent magazine salespeople at all, but two Jehovah's Witnesses trying to rope the Filipinos into a "Bible study class." (-_-' ) I felt like Alma and Amulek contending with Zeezrom, because the guy kept asking us questions that he already knew the answer to, trying to cross us in our words. He'd be like "Hm. Ah. That's so interesting, because I just read this part in the Bible..." and pulled out his Watchtower Bible. But I know that God fulfilled his promise that we were not confounded before men. We were both given the words to say, and in the end we were able to just bear pure testimony and leave--if not friends, then at least not enemies. Don't worry, I don't go looking for bible bashes.

The last story is good and funny, not just a "poor Elder Durrant" story. We were teaching (name) and his Filipino grandpa, who is actually super interested in the Book of Mormon. We taught them the kingdoms of glory, telling them that the first kingdom was like the sun, and we're the most happy there, the second is like the moon, not as good as number one, and the third is like the stars, and the sinners go there. (name)was falling asleep because it was about 8:30, so Elder Larson said, "Hey, which kingdom do you want to go to?"
(name): "Number three."
Grandpa: "Number three? Why do you select number three? Why do you do that?"
(name): "I like the stars."
Grandpa: "You cannot select number three! You select number three, you go to hell!"
Elder Larson and I were laughing so hard. If you don't find it funny, have Dillon read it to you in a Filipino accent (sounds like India, more or less).

Anyway, those are my fun stories for the week. Our investigators are doing well. (name)'s grandpa was the surprise investigator who really has a lot of interest. He was so excited to get a Book of Mormon, and he read nine pages even though it's a little tough for him to read English. Elder Larson's going to give him a Tagalog copy. He also would have come to Stake Conference if (name) hadn't slept too late--they were going to ride their bikes there together. It's really cool to see that the Lord is preparing the hearts of the children of men. We may find them in the most unexpected of places, but if we're always looking, we'll find them.

Fun bit of trivia: I'm now in the same apartment Elder Bickmore was in when he was my zone leader. We've got a pretty nice little setup. We're in the An-nan District of Tainan City, which is a lot of countryside and stuff. Elder Braby is from Sandy. I'm pretty excited to be working with him. We'll just have to rely on the Lord to do all we can to help our missionaries hit their own goals. President Bishop is big on that--hitting your own goals.

Well, that letter was exceptionally long. You should be proud of me. I love you all so much, and I wish you well in the coming week. Talk to you next week!


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