How is everyone? I am pleased to report that General Conference as a missionary is ten times better than sitting on the couch at home watching it. This weekend, we (meaning all of the American elders and sisters) gathered on the 3rd floor of the Bayanzurkh Building to watch all the sessions. On Saturday, in between sessions, a herd of us American missionaries heading over the "Sky Department Store" (the Mongolian Target) to get food and snacks. It was really funny. So many Americans...well only like 30. On Sunday in between sessions, we had a huge potluck lunch, which included PB&J sandwiches! So nice to get a taste of America! It was really one of my most cherished experiences here in the mission so far…watching Conference, that is! Sitting in a church…in Mongolia…with 30 American missionaries watching a Prophet of God speak about us and to us. Really, I can't describe it, but I will never forget it.
Conference…Well this is what I learned... In my opinion, the overall message was "Defend your Faith," and "Families." Elder Holland was so awesome and direct in his talk from Saturday Morning Session. He had a different countenance to him. Maybe you guys didn't really notice it, but all the Elders and Sisters here thought so. When he said, "I am more certain of the Restoration (and other things) than I am certain that I am standing here in front of you right now." Wow! We all were like, "Woah." I loved when he said, "Discipleship…It is the strait and narrow path that doesn’t have a lot of latitude." Such a true statement. Such a powerful talk about Defending the Faith! Pres. Eyring gave a great talk about Families. I love my family! Elder Nelson gave a great talk about Faith. "Your faith will be tested and challenged." Also I loved when he asked us, “What are we tied to?" If you really think about it, it is such a valid question for all Latter Day Saints.
Again….Defending your Faith. Quenton L. Cook's talk about family history work was great. His statement, "We will be saviors to our family through ordinances, both living and dead," really hit home to me. I really have gained an testimony and understanding of why Family History is so important. #1: It is a commandment. In Priesthood Session, Elder Uchtdoft gave a great talk about Addiction, and he crowned it with, "We are sons and daughters of the most high. WE are not meant to be shackled to earth, wearing a straight jacket made by ourselves." My favorite talk of all came from Pres. Eyring in Priesthood Session, all about Heroes. So great! All priesthood holders are lighted candles to the world. Hands down the best talk of the weekend…..again about Priesthood holders Defending their Faith. President Monson’s talk in Priesthood session about Courage and Holding true to your Faith was so great also. Jabari Parker's fathers quote was solid too. Sister Stevens’ one liner literally hit all of us so hard when she said, "The Gospel isn't weight, it is wings." So true. So solid. It made me really think of you mom…just saying. I could see you up there giving that same talk. Other talks about Faith came from William R. Walker and Lawrence Corbridge. Then Elder Bednar didn't let anyone down with his talk about, "The Load." How true is that? The Load is what delivers us. We all fall into the trap of thinking our load is holding us back and weighing us down, but in the end, where would we be without it?
So I hope you get the point. We need to Defend our Faith. We are all just the fulfillment of prophecy, whether we fall away or we stand firm in the faith and hold to the rod. You choose what you will be tied to in these last days. Good thing is we already know who will win, so the choice should be simple. Let us all make the right choice for ourselves, our family, and our posterity.
This week’s work was slow and dragging. We only had 5 lessons all week. It’s hard not to feel like a waste of time when you have a week like that, but I have faith that through the Lord, He is just molding us to be what He needs. Salvation didn't come easy. We are working hard, but we just got cancelled on a lot this week. That is hard, but we just have to keep kicking & stroking. It will come. Please pray for us to find people to teach. As of right now, we have four investigators. That is not enough.
The baptism of Sister Althmaa was postponed until this Friday because she will be getting baptized together with her younger sister. That will be such a neat experience. I am so pumped. Her baptism is Friday the 25th, then we have another on Saturday, Ankhbayar. The fruits of our labors are showing, and that is so promising in these hard times.
I love you all so much. Please work everyday to lay your treasures up in Heaven. We can't afford to slack.
Until next week…Kick & Stroke.
This isn't a great picture, but it's all the American Elders minus a few at Conference.
Just chillin' with the sisters I came out with during conference weekend.
Just arrived in our area (Shar-Khad) for the day. Gotta get to work.
This is Elder and Sister Stewart. Hs is the mission doctor leaving this week. Great couple! I'll write more about them in a letter I'm sending. I will miss them.
This is the recipe we submitted for the mission cookbook that is coming out. A Mongolian drink: boiling hot milk with rice, but I put the American spin on it... boiling chocolate milk with rice! Mmmm.