Monday, July 8, 2013

July 3, 2013 Happy Hong Kong SAR day! Oh and 4th of July!

Fam and friends! How goes it back in the States??? Stoked to hear about all the mission calls. The wave is just getting bigger and bigger! There isn't a work like it. One that changes more lives and brings lasting happiness. I know that with a surety. 

This Monday was HK's fourth of July, well, sorta. It is the day they were turned over to China, no longer a British Colony. It was weird because there was a bunch of people had China flags out and pictures of Mao Ze Dong... It was really weird.. haha No fireworks though, what a let down.. haha.

This week we have worked miracles and that is not an understatement! We have been struggling to find people to teach and the few that we do have, are losing interest. It has been a struggle for sure. We have just really tried that much harder to make a difference. The Hong Kong area has plans to expand from 6 stakes in Hong Kong to 9, so that means we have a lot of work to do! So we turned our attention to the members we haven't seen in a while. It can be tough contacting these members because a lot of the time they just shut the door on us too, even though they have experienced the happiness the gospel brings in the past. We had that happen a lot this week, but with that, we have also made huge strides! We have been able to meet with almost 10 different families and invite them to church. I have faith they will make it, but we will see Sunday! In meeting with them, I have seen photos of their own baptisms as far back as in the 60's! Hong Kong is a special place, especially in Hong Kong because the church is still so "new" here. Seeing those pictures brought back some great memories for these less active members, as well as helping Elder Fong and I teach with more fire. Seeing the legacy of missionary work in this part of the woods has really been a motivator. 

This week I gave my first blessing in Chinese. That is a miracle in and of itself! Luckily, the Lord and his power isn't bound to my language ability. Elder Fong is one of the smoothest talkers I think I have ever met. To visit a lot of these less active members, you have to get past the security guard. The Angriest and most intimidating old Chinese ladies the world has to offer. I don't know how we were able to do it, but he always can talk them into letting us up and visit.

One miracle story is we went to visit a less active and we couldn't get past the guard. she just wouldn't let us up. So we just talked to her a while. As it turns out, she is a less active member herself! We had tried contacting her multiple times with no success, but here she was. We were able to schedule and teach her later that week. Now she will be at church this Sunday! The Lord truly puts people in your path. So it is our job to be doing what we should be doing, when we should be doing it. That's where miracles happen. All about obedience.

Missionaries live a crazy life on top of all the spiritual stuff as well. I have been packed into a train car so tight that I hardly had room to breath. They had some MTR workers pushing people onto the train. It was madness. haha. 

Be a missionary. Everyone can do it. Be an example. Serve. Just be nice. The world needs nice people. Sounds overly simple, but its true. I can't tell you how many people will stop and talk a while just because of a smile. Its hard to do sometimes after finding for 8 hours in the wet heat of HK, but it pays off. So this week, smile. Help someone who needs it. Be the person you were sent here to become! The Lord will help you.

You are all in my prayers, and I am feeling the effects of yours all the way across the world. 

Love you all!
Elder Woodburn

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