Monday, March 12, 2012

Marching Onward, ever onward...

I'm sitting here in another internet cafe, a cold rain drizzling outside. It's good to be alive.

This was a really great week. I think I completely forgot to tell you last week, but the chapel in Douliu is newly remodeled and has a big, beautiful sacrament meeting chapel added on to it. It's been under renovation for over a year. This last weekend was the dedication and open house of the new chapel, and we were blessed to play a part in this very historical event. All the auxiliary organizations, including us missionaries, set up a little stand in one of the rooms that exhibited that organization, what it's about, and so forth. On Friday morning some reporters came to tour around and film some displays. Elder Wong and I also went to help out, and they ended up asking me a couple questions about why I came here as a missionary and such, and apparently I ended up on TV! I'm a Taiwanese TV star! No, just kidding. I am, however, an authorized representative of Jesus Christ. Hopefully the publicity will increase some community interest in the Church. Then on Saturday we attended the dedication and the ribbon cutting. Several community leaders, like the county commissioner, the mayor of Douliu, and some of the county legislators showed up to the ribbon cutting and said some very nice things about the church. A traditional Chinese symphony provided the music. It was a really neat experience.

One of the really great miracles this week was that on Wednesday President Bishop, who served here in Douliu many years ago as a young missionary (he white-wash trained in Douliu, actually), asked us to visit one of the men he baptized and invite him to the dedication. We prayed really hard the whole next day that Brother Wang would let us in his house and let us deliver this message. Our prayers were answered; Brother (name) was home, he let us in, and we invited him to come. He was a little reluctant at first--he hasn't been to church in a long time--but he did indeed remember Elder Bishop. The next day we visited again and brought a member with us. This member befriended him and offered to drive him to the ceremony, and he eventually accepted. So on Saturday, 90-year-old Brother (name) and his wife came to the service and President Bishop was able to see him and talk to him. We were so blessed and humbled to be able to play a part in helping this Brother start back on the path to activity in the church.

We have also been extremely blessed to find Brother (name), who is going to be baptized this week. He's started to make a few more friends in the ward, which was my main concern for him, so I'm glad to see that. He really is a very humble and sweet man. On Sunday during our lesson after church, he started to cry and said that he'd finally found his home in our church. Those are the moments when you feel like you've really done something right. The Lord has been answering our prayers in so many ways.

I don't know what else to write. Those were the highlights of the week. Other than that it's been just working hard to find people who will be baptized. The time is ticking, so we've got to do our best to find them.

Well, that's about it for me this week. Keep me in your prayers. I'll keep you in mine. Also, give missionaries referrals! Invite nonmember friends to learn about the gospel. :)


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