Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Hey! Sorry, this might be a short one this week, we have to catch a train in an hour for Toronto so we can make it for our plans there. We have lunch with one of the members Elder Martin knows so we have to get there by 11:30. We are hitting up some other places such as Kensington Market, the CN tower, the ROM and Downtown. I'm sure I'll have a lot more updates on details next week!
This week was quite crazy, a couple funny stories, first off I had exchanges with Elder Martin. He's the one I went to Jr. High with, I went on exchanges with him last month as well. We had an awesome exchange, it was really influential to me and helped me out with improving some of the things I've been focused on recently. We met with our investigator Merrill and he brought his friend Derek along. Well, turns out they are Pentecostal and wanted to "Save us from Hell". Really good guys, but it was a cool experience where we were able to really bear strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and Christ's restored Church. They kept slandering the Book of Mormon, and when we asked them what the Book of Mormon taught, they couldn't even tell us, we invited them to read and boldly told them they did not know, they had no experience with it. We aren't meeting again, but I'm really hoping they take the challenge to sincerely ask of God, for they will receive an answer.
Next interesting story, we've been trying to save on our car kilometers, so we decided to take our bikes out after dinner the other night for a few hours. While biking downtown Hamilton at night and we were going through a park when we found a huge group of kids from Africa. Turned out is was one of the local high school gangs, haha, good group of kids. At one point there was us standing in the center of a huge group of like 20 kids. They were asking all sorts of questions,turns out they were all from Northern Africa and were all Muslims. They started asking all sorts of questions about Christianity. When we found a commonality they would all start going wild and yelling and high fiving and stuff. It's funny the situations you find yourself in as a missionary.
We stopped buy a former investigator named Penny this week, and there was this big Pakistani man outside, whe started giving us a hard time about pretending she wasn't there. Anyhow, he started to go on about the end of the world and all sorts of stuff, he might have been slightly inebriated. Right before we were going I told him Thank you in Urdu (Native tongue of Pakistan) He grabbed me picked me up holding me about his head and started to spin me around saying all sorts of words in Urdu. His family was laughing and he gave me a hug. He seemed pretty excited I knew something in Urdu. Funny guy, we probably won't go back, not interested in the Gospel at this time, but hopefully in the future!
Yesterday we had a YSA Bonfire. If you've ever been to Canada you'll know about black flies, these small terrible creatures. Well, we got the the fire and they came in the millions swarming us. Luckily once the fire started, the smoke dispersed some of them.
Sunday we got to go to Churchville YSA in Brampton for a special meeting! It was a combined YSA conference from Brampton, Hamilton, Toronto, Barrie, and Oshawa! Such an amazing meeting, it was so busy that they made all the missionaries sit on the stand to make more room for others. It was probably one of the best meetings I've been too on my mission. We had the Brampton Stake President, Churchville Bishop (Former 70), and Temple president speak. Powerhouse meeting to say the least! They spoke on topics from forgiveness to how to know how you are doing in the Lord's sight, so building faith. Such a stellar meeting, two of my favorite quotes from the meeting were "Heaven is full of those who have been forgiven and forgive" and the other was "We are not called to tend the sheep, but to move the flock forward".
We started working with one of the Member's fiance this week, her name is Katie. She grew up baptist, but is very very very open to the Gospel. I was so surprised by her willingness and excitement to read and pray and discover if it is true. We had a lesson in the parking lot of her apartment complex, and she said such a powerful closing prayer.
The Downtown Elders had some baptisms this week so we got to do the interviews for the kids, and I was asked to Confirm one of the little girls, it was surprising to me but I was ecstatic. It was my first time confirming somebody, what a sweet spirit filled the room and she was confirmed and received one of the greatest gifts from God, the Holy Ghost.
Jaspreet is doing well, we talked about Baptism yesterday with her and she committed to Baptism in June! We're really excited for her, she's really grown a lot in her Testimony!
I gotta get running! Have a great week! Love you all!
Elder Adam Taylor
(Check out these Canadian Popo)
Quote of the week "How do I defeat the Cherubim and the Flaming Sword"What a great week! We had an amazing week, in YSA work we don't usually get to do much planned service, but this week we had tons of it. First service opportunity was Tuesday when we went and helped this random guy named Dan. Dan contacted the Burlington elders and they passed his number to us, he has a huge cement waterfall in his backyard that we helped to break up and haul out to his truck and take to a cement dump. 2 Hours of carrying concrete sure was quite the workout. He was a pretty interesting guy, awesome guy, but not too interested in the Gospel right now. Something that I love about doing service is we can help people who aren't interested in our message. We can still serve the way the Savior did, even if they don't want to hear about the Savior.Tuesday night we got a call from the downtown Elders in a panic because they were moving a lady into her apartment and they needed help bad, we showed up to help. We had an hour and a half to move this lady in, and 3 companionship's of Elders. We were working like crazy to get it done, the last thing was this massive couch up 3 flights of stairs and then disassemble part of it to get it through the door. On Thursday morning, the Agnews (Member of the Branch Presidency) asked us to help them move. They're moving to Alberta to be with their kids. They literally had a Semi truck outside their house, and we filled it to the brim. Every minute was ticking because they had to pay for the truck by the hour so we had to rush, pack, and pound our way through. Some of the Elders were caught riding a tandem bike during the move though... :) Friday we went out to the Hobbs to help Sister Hobbs with some gardening to thank her for all she's done for us. I forgot how peaceful and relaxing gardening can be.Jaspreet is doing awesome, she came out to church yesterday and really enjoyed it. It was hard for her because all of her family is back in India and she's here alone. She sent us a nice text later on yesterday to tell our Mothers happy mothers day for her. Last week she basically looked up everything about the church, we haven't been able to teach her the restoration yet, because we've been so focused on helping her understand who Christ is and the very basics. She texted us later last week telling us she knew everything about Joseph Smith, explained his story to us, and at church she asked why we don't drink coffee or tea, she then pulled up a funny song to the tune of Adele's "Hello". It's about missionaries, if you haven't heard it, listen to it. She said that the song really did describe what it's like as missionaries asking people to meet.Brett is doing awesome as well, he's been really diligent in studying the scriptures and he even went and researched the entire next lesson. So we went over all of that, and he wants to start coming to church now. What is up with all these people looking up everything before we can even teach them??We had a guy named Merrell text us last week wanting to meet up, he's baptist and knows everything about the church. He had a bunch of Questions about scriptures in Isaiah which he said contradicted our Church doctrine. Sometimes it's hard to not immediately start bashing, so I told him I'd take the scriptures and look into them. I read them this morning and got all the answers to them, sometimes you have to look at the context in which the scriptures are given to find the answers.I had an Exchange this week with Elder Cruz, he's from California! He was in Niagara with me. We met this sweet guy named Sam who just moved to Hamilton we are going to teach today again, and we also met a guy named Weishi who met the missionaries in Welland got a Book of Mormon and moved. When we started talking he got excited and said he wanted to meet up with us!The Work here is seriously exploding right now, it's been so much fun, so many memories and great times are being made here!Yesterday, after skyping, we had dinner with the Julians. Well, Brother Julian is a movie paraphernalia fanatic. He owns the original Nacho Libre Blouse, and guess who got a picture in it...I'm so grateful for the Gospel today and how it blesses our families and makes it possible for us to be together forever. I'm so grateful for Mothers and the example they are to all of us. I love them, and am especially grateful for my mom!Love you all! Elder Taylor
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
(Last time with Elder Layton - he is going home.)
I think this last week has been one of the busiest weeks of my whole mission. We were running all over the place trying to get things figured out and put together, meet with people, find people, everything. We had to take care of a lot of business stuff, and cram lessons into the time we had open. We barely had time to eat, we had dinner at 10pm a lot because we didn't have time for dinner throughout the day. We're too blessed to be tired though.
Early Tuesday morning we had to travel to Brampton to get the truck and trailer because we had to clean out and close down an apartment. That took up a huge chunk of the day, for some reason missionaries have to hand like a million pictures up with push pins so I had to fill all the wholes in the wall. That took forever, I felt like I was working in construction. Later on we had to head to St. Catherines and had dinner with Emily and the Chinese Elders. We went to a Doughnut shop owned by this little chinese couple, and this place has the best Wonton Soup.
Early Wednesday morning we had to wake up to go into Brampton, unload the whole trailer and be at a meeting for 7:30am... Craziness, basically that meeting went all day. It was way good though, we don't have Zone council's anymore. The Area Authorities have gotten rid of them, which is sad because we don't get to do those meetings anymore, but there are plenty of other meetings. By the time we got home, and saw a few people, or day was over!
One of the Burlington members called us and told us she had a YSA living in her basement who's been through a hard time recently, his name is Brett so we went over to meet with him this week. He is so unbelievable prepared, as we met with him we felt very strongly to leave 2 specific commitments with him, first to ask God for forgiveness of his past mistakes, and second, to read Alma 32. It was cool because after our lesson we were talking and we both had the idea to leave the same exact 2 commitments. It's cool to see how the Lord can help us work together so well. Elder Toly and I have been having an awesome time together, it's been absolutely amazing!
We had such a cool lesson with Jaspreet this week. We met with her at the Chapel and the Hornburgers joined us for the lesson. Jaspreet had been asking us why bad things happen to people when they are doing things like worshipping God or helping others. She has really struggled a lot with that question. We taught the Plan of Salvation, the Hornbergers told of their experiences with the Plan of Salvation, the Spirit was so unbelievably strong, and at the end of the lesson we turned to her and asked the question she had asked us, and she responded by saying something along the lines of "So that we can learn and become better, and also so that we can show God we will make the right choices." All I have to say is that the Spirit taught her, it wasn't us at all.
Earlier this week we had to stop in at Walmart to get some ink for our printer, while we were there Elder Toly had to use the Washroom so I was sitting on a bench waiting and this old man named Mike sat next to me. I began to talk to him, and without realizing our conversation went on for 45 minutes. I think Elder Toly was ready to die by the end of my conversation with him, but he told me about his life story. Something cool he shared was how he came to know Christ, and as he did that he wanted to help somebody else somehow. He rented out his basement to what he referred to as a "Druggie". Anyhow, Mike ended up having a stroke and this "Druggie" saved his life. He then had a good friend die of a stroke. He asked why was he still alive, and his friend die. He said he hadn't been able to find the answer yet for himself. I testified of the Plan of Salvation and he gave us his contact info, and said we could come by. Too bad he isn't YSA, but we're going to try to get him to meet with the Sisters.
Sunday was a special broadcast for the North American North East Area. We got to hear from Elder Oaks, Elder Perkins, and our Stake President. One of my favorite quotes was this "Your phone should be a slave not your master". Elder Oaks also went off on members and the need for them to invite their friends to learn of the Gospel. We love whenever missionary work is brought up.
A very cool things we learned at MLC, was this, when we pray we should ask the Lord for a miracle, and commit to him that if we don't, it won't be before we didn't try. I know that the Lord does send miracles and helps us in every aspect of our lives!
Love you all, Elder Taylor
Monday, May 8, 2017
I'll start off his week with a story to show the excitement of Hamilton. We had a lesson early one morning that we got back from our appointment at around 9am. When we parked out front there was this little asian man in a panic. He started to point at his tires and then proceeded to point at the cars all around him on the street. As we looked, every cars tires were flat. Someone slashed all the car tires parked on the street. There were like 6 cars that had knife wholes in all their tires. I guess we lucked out by having a garage. Thank goodness we didn't park on the street! That's not even the end of the story. The asian man got in his car and started to drive away on his rims!! His rims were bending and his tires were coming off, his car hardly moved but he put on the hazards and proceeded down the street! What the Flip?
What a great start to a transfer eh? Let me tell you all a bit about my companion, man have we had an awesome time together so far! His name is Elder Toly, he is from Lethbridge, Alberta. So my very first Canadian companion. He's been out 1 transfer less than me and he just came from Oshawa YSA(He says the Niagara YSA is already better). He's big into sports, loves basketball, he has 3 siblings, he also likes the outdoors (We'll be friends). The other Elder that moved in with us is Elder Dardon, from Penn Valley, California. His parents are both Latino, but he looks straight while. We all make jokes about how we have an American, a Mexican, an African and a Canadian living in the same house.
Last monday we had a HAMILTON HOG ROAST! That was the best way to end the transfer, Elder Stone and I were in charge of butchering, so we butchered this roasted pig for close to an hour. Man was that meat delicious!
We had an awesome lesson this week with Belen, she is doing awesome. She came to church, our YSA activity. She's really diving into the Book of Mormon right now, so we're excited to see how she feels about Baptism more this week. It's been cool to see her fellowshipped into the Branch here, it seems like she knows so many of the members!
We met with Jaspreet and her friend Harpreet this week and she took us to her Sikh temple! It was interesting, you have to take your shoes off when you go in, and then we went into this big room where they worship their God, we just sat back and watched, and then they give you this weird stuff, that is similar to bread dough, but it is more moist and not as stick, it's sweet, and oily. Basically it turns out it's like their sacrament. We then went into the basement where they give free meals to anybody so we had dinner down there. It was really cool to get to talk about their beliefs and see how they worshiped, and helped us to know a lot better about what we can do to help her understand the organization of the Church as well as our beliefs. It always amazes me to see commonalities between different religions.
We started to teach this girl named Michelle, We found her tracting 2 weeks ago and were able to teach her the restoration this week. At the end of the lesson she didn't feel comfortable praying so Elder Toly said the prayer. After the prayer she asked if we believed in Aura, we told her about the Holy Ghost, and explained it's role, and asked her why she asked? She proceeded to tell us that we were both glowing while we were praying. It was pretty shocking, I didn't know what to say really. While we were teaching her she seemed very shy and we weren't sure how much intent she had, but this experience changed our minds on that!
Saturday we had a Branch activity, the Elders Quorum put on a dinner for the Relief Society, we got picked as the entertainment/Spritual thought. We ended up doing a pretty long skit of Book of Mormon stories. Everybody was laughing, not sure if it was at us or with us...
We were down in St. Cats for District meeting, afterwards we went and met Emily for Beechwood doughnuts and a lesson, I think I'm addicted to them now. They're so good! Emily actually was in charge of the lesson so we all sat in the park with our doughnuts and Emily taught us about God's hand being in our lives.
We got a referral for a guy named Ryan, who's mom is a member, he is reading the Book of Mormon, and we have a lesson with him tomorrow... It's amazing how the Lord prepares so many people, we've been blessed recently with so many miracles just like this.
Yesterday during the sacrament, I had a very strong witness of the reality of Christ's love and forgiveness. I'm so grateful for Christ and his willingness to forgive all things and the example he had given unto all of us. He lives, and he will come again in all his Glory! The Gospel brings joy and rest, and I'm grateful that I know of it, how lucky I am to have been born into the Gospel, and how lucky I am to have the opportunity to share it with those who were not born into it.
Love you all!
Elder Adam Taylor
Tuesday, April 25, 2017
We were sitting around for an hour and 27 minutes last night until we got our transfer call. We knew one was coming because the AP's told us but it didn't come till 10:27, literally the last call of the night. Elder Spencer is packing his bags and headed to Chatham, he served there 2 transfers after me, then left after 1 transfer and he's going back. He's super pumped to go back there! I'm staying here and my new companion is Elder Toly, from Lethbridge, Alberta! I'm really excited to serve with him, I served around him when I was here in Burlington and when I was in Barrie! I'm excited to be staying here, Hallelujah!
We hit up Niagara Falls last Monday, it was fun to be down there. Absolutely beautiful weather we had, Emily took us on a hike down by the river with a bunch of the Zone, we also went up by the Falls, checked um out, and stopped by the Harley Davidson Dealership. We're going to start a biker missionary gang...
So Wednesday one of the members, Tallar, took us out for dinner but wouldn't tell me where we were going, so we drove into Burlington and ended up pulling into Ikea. It's been a very very long time since I've been there to eat, but it was super good! The Downtown Elders had their family get baptized this week, so on we ended up there doing 5 interviews that night as well. Their Baptism was very powerful, and the Elders said the confirmation was the strongest they've every felt the spirit. It's amazing to see families join the fold, and come unto Christ.
I can't remember if we told you or not about the Horneburgers, but they are the new Senior couple in our branch. They are from Cardston, Alberta. They have 15 children, yep, that's right, 15 children. We had dinner with them last week and the quantity of food they made was unreal! I'm not sure Sister Horneburger knows how to cook small quantities. They are so awesome, this is their like 4th mission so far, and they are a Celestial Couple. Anyhow, we had this referral way out in the middle of nowhere, so they ended up driving us out there, it was super funny because we were tracting one side of the street and they were tracting the other side of the street after stopping by the referral. I felt like a group of JW's.
Friday the Chinese Elders had to take our car so we ended up out in Stoney Creek with no car and had to bus back, I sat by this young guy from Albania and pretty much learned all the history of Albania. Apparently it is 80% Muslim there as well, so we also talked about his background. We weren't able to get his number, but we're hoping he comes to church one of these days!
Investigators are doing well, Belen came to church on sunday, she's been loving it in YSA, so we are seeing her on Saturday and hopefully going to set her with a Baptismal Date! Wahoo! A lot of our investigators couldn't meet last week, so this week were going to hit the street running.
Love you all!
Elder Adam Taylor
Monday, April 17, 2017
Here are a few tips for updates for the week!
Chicken and Waffles: Wednesday was Chicken and Waffles day at our Southern Smoke House. It was a big nice Texas Waffle, with a big old deep fried chicken breast smothered in the best honey glaze y'all would ever imagine.
Chinese Exchange: I got to go on Exchanges with Elder Martin this last week, he's from Utah, fun fact, I actually went to Jr. High with him. He was born in Hong Kong, then moved to Utah a few years later. We had an awesome time on exchanges, luckily everybody we taught could speak English as well as Mandarin so I knew what was going on a majority of the time.
Kaku exchange: I got to go on exchanges with Elder Kaku as well, he is from Ghana and his dad is currently serving as a Mission President in Nigeria, however his dad was just called as an Area 70, so he'll be starting that in June. Our exchange was a blast though, we had a booked day, which ended up falling apart, so we ended up on the streets all day tracting and talking with people. It turned into a great exchange, found a really cool Brazilian guy named Mattio who they are going to start teaching. We also had this really interesting guy named David come up to us on the street. We were walking down the street and he came running over to us, jay walked across the intersection, and in a very loud voice started asking us what Fornication was and if Pornography was bad. It was kinda awkward with people walking all around us, but we helped him understand.
Later that evening we were walking down the street and another guy came running up to us, yelling "Brother Brother". Turns out this guy named Jim had been living in a rough place for most his life, now he started reading the bible and it's been changing his life a lot. We listened to him just talk for close to 35 minutes straight, we hardly said a work. He's a bit crazy, big into conspiracy, but wants to be baptized and we'll be seeing him again tomorrow.
Good Friday: Good Friday here is interesting, because everything shuts down for it. It's a National Holiday, which I find really weird seeming how we don't even really celebrate it in Utah at all.
Easter Dinner: We had dinner last night with the Hobbs/Gilmore's. They are an awesome family, they do so much for us. We had Yorkshire pudding with dinner, it reminded me a lot of being with Elder Jones.
Liz: We started teaching Liz again, we stopped teaching her for a few weeks because she was going through a few things, but we started teaching her again, and she should hopefully be baptized next month, Woot woot!
Jaspreed: Our investigator Jaspreed also came to church yesterday, it was her very first time at a Christian church and she really enjoyed it. She is Sikh, and from India. It's been a blast teaching her, and we'll be seeing her again this week.
I had the opportunity yesterday to read and compare the Sermon on the Mount to the Nephites and to those in Jerusalem. It's cool to see how there are a few differences in and they all have to do with Christ fulfilling Mosaic Law. Christ's sacrifice and the Atonement of Jesus Christ truly did make all things possible for us. I'm so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who has given us his son, Jesus Christ, as an example to follow, and as our personal Saviors. I love the Gospel and all it can do for us, and I'm grateful for the church and leaders who help us to know how to better follow Christ, I couldn't do it alone.
Love you all!
Elder Adam Taylor