Thursday, April 15, 2010

7 October

October is here! And that means two things...cooler weather and GENERAL CONFERENCE!!!! I know that you have all already seen it (by the way, I heard they will be building a temple in Brigham City...seriously?!) but we watch it a week after the fact. Which means this Saturday and Sunday. We are all really stoked and excited.

So the exciting thing about General Conference is that last Tuesday we were up in Taipei doing temple tour and we were walking into the kitchen at the church to eat our lunch. Up in Taipei the church building has 7 stories, with the distribution center in the basement, two chapels, many classrooms, a gym, and church employees who work on the 4th level. So anyway we were walking into the kitchen and this woman walks up to us and asks us if we can help her translate something. It was a talk and she was trying to translate it into English. After helping her with several difficult sentences, I caught a glimpse of the title of the talk...and realized that it was President Monson's Oct 2009 general conference address! So even though our help was minimal, I helped translate his conference talk into Chinese...and I totally read it before it was given. It was exciting. :)

I am sure that many of you may have heard that there was a pretty serious typhoon in the Philippines. The same typhoon (it was actually a twin typhoon--2 in 1) was heading for Taiwan (and my companion and I were getting pretty excited for a typhoon day because we were exhausted!!!!!) but never hit full force. It did, however, bring very strong winds and lots of rain--not strong enough for our mission president to tell us to stay inside but so strong that we could hardly ride our bikes at times. The cold rain was a relief after several months of melting but it was a bit of an irritation to have freezing rain pelting into our faces with 30 mph winds for 3 days straight. Oh well, the life of a missionary is not all fun and games, right?

But some of it is fun and games. I guess my parents were tired of hearing about how I ride all over Taiwan at death speed and so they sent me a speedometer for my bike. :) And I finally installed it yesterday, and so the stats are in. Yesterday we rode more than 9 miles, our top speed was 16 mph, and our average speed was 8.2 mph. And it was a pretty normal/chill day. I just wish now that I had something that could measure the speed of the wind blowing our bikes over! :)

Oh, and I was called to be the "coordinting sister" for Taoyuan and Zhongli, which means that I get to go on exchanges again. Remember when my companions in Tucheng were the exchange sister? So I am excited for a party a week again on exchanges! :)

And now some news about Achin, the Indonesian new member. When we went up to Taipei on Tuesday, we went to the distribution center and picked up some indonesian materials that we had ordered about a month ago--they were finally in! So right after her baptism, we gave Achin an Indonesian hymnbook, 3 Liahonas, the RS Joseph Smith manual, the proclamation, and the Living Christ. It was so exciting that she will finally be able to read things in Indonesian! And she is so awesome. When we went over to her house to give her the Indonesian things she had a tithing slip and asked us to fill it out for her (because it has to be written in Chinese). So we filled out the address and the ward part for her and gave it to her, and she said "thank you" and then reached into her bag and pulled out a stack of 30, gave them to us, and asked us to write her address on all of them! We laughed and said we would write her address on 3 and then she could ask the members for help on the rest. It is inspiring to see her so faithful--that even though she doesn't understand anything she still goes to church, and even though she has severe money problems she still pays her tithing, and she has been introducing us to some of her friends too. And asked us to have missionaries visit her children in Indonesia. She is just awesome!

And now for a story about the weird and the wild in Taiwan. The chapel in Bade is beautiful and pretty big and so we get all sorts of weird people that will walk in when the gates are open and come to church on their own. Some of them are ready for the gospel, and some of them are crazy, and some of them are drunk.

The other night my companion and I were at the church meeting with Achin and we were sitting in the foyer and had the door open because the weather is FINALLY cooling down. So we were talking to her and all of a sudden this man with long hair and a cut on his face without a shirt or shoes (he was only wearing pants) and very VERY drunk walks in and stares at us. I thought to myself, "if we ignore him he will go away" so I just tried not to make eye contact and hope he would just walk out on his own. My companion, however, ordered him out. It was actually pretty funny because what she said in Chinese was "you can go outside. Now. There is no one here you are looking for. Go outside! Go! Go!" So he turned around and walked outside.

So yesterday we were at the church while one of our investigators was having a baptismal interview (so two elders were there) and he walked in again--just as drunk but this time wearing both a shirt and shoes. Luckily the elder who wasn't giving the interview took him outside and sent him home. And when the elder came back in, he said, "Isn't the Word of Wisdom so awesome?"

Yes, it is!

Well, I have more to say but I am tired of writing. Hope you all enjoyed General Conference and stay away from shirtless drunk men. :)

Sister White

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