Tuesday, November 22, 2016

A Bit of Davis High in Ontario 11/21/16

Whelp, we knew summer wouldn't last forever! It's been a long one, so we were blessed with what we got. Friday was warm, 18 C. Saturday Cooled down, and by that night we were in a flurry of Snow. We got about 3 inches here in London, and now it feels like straight winter. It's about -1 C today, so not horrible, that's about 30 F.  

I had exchanges with Elder Payne this last week, he's from Taber Alberta, it's got like 8,000 people, and apparently it's half Mormon and half Mennonite. Quite the town in you ask me just thinking about it. We had a good time, they split the ward with us so it was just like being in the same area. We were tracting in this one area, I think he was getting a bit spooked out because he's been out for like 2 weeks and people kept saying "This is a bad part of town, you shouldn't be here". We kept knocking doors and met this really cool Korean couple. She said "Oh Momon!" and we were like yes, then she said "Ummm... Ooootah? We talked for a bit, that's about all she knew but they invited us to come back, so the Elders are going back with a Korean Book of Mormon for them!

Kim is doing very well, we have been meeting with her and she is working towards the first of December for Baptism! We had a couple amazing lessons with her last week, we were teaching her on Tuesday and while teaching her I felt like talking about Tithing, so I was looking for a way to teach that and move into that, the lessons never really let me, so after I was wondering if I had failed to follow the spirit, as the next lesson with her came around, again, I felt the need to teach her tithing, it was amazing that the lesson went from talking about he Book of Mormon directly into Tithing with such ease, and she accepted the principle right off the bat! She's awesome, doing so well, she's been out to church for the last 4 weeks in a row now. We're really excited for her!

Aggie is doing really well also, she is working towards baptism in March, she has a few things we're working on with her right now, she's awesome though. Such a nice Lady! She is Polish so last week she was teaching us about Slovak languages, so languages such as Polish, Slovenian, Ukrainian, and Russian. Apparently, if you place people that speak those languages in the same room they can communicate with each other knowing up to 90% of what the others are saying. Fun fact of the day.

We had dinner with the Young Family this week and we had Russian and Ukrainian cuisine. We had Perogies with Kielbasa and Sour Cream. Perogies are a Ukrainian food, kind of like a dumpling. And Kielbasa is a Russian Sausage, they were delicious. Along with that we had a Russian Mushroom soup which was perhaps some of the best soup I've ever had!

Another interesting food I tried this week is called Ayran, it's a fermented milk drink. Literally it's made of Yogurt, water and Salt. It's nasty, I'm never drinking it again. I got it while we were getting Shawarma the other day.

We went out to the Bridges last Friday to do some service and ended up stacking firewood for 2 hours. Our backs were a bit sore afterwards, but they needed the help! They have Italian Mastiffs and breed them, and they currently have 21 puppies. They are less than a week old now, so when they get a bit older hopefully I'll be able to send you a picture of them. The Mom looks just like Hagrid's dog on Harry Potter.

We were out in Strathroy on Saturday when the snow storm kicked in, and we met Sister Pestana, her family is from Portugal, and she was baptized in the summer of 2014, she is so awesome! Such an amazing women, we are going to be able to see her once a week now and she wants to go back to the temple so we are helping her to work towards that now! After Sister Pestana we went and saw Brother Quaife, he's an older member, who use to be a Stake Seventy, he is obsessed with Rocks and Minerals and started pulling all these rocks out. We had to fight our way out of his apartment practically. Haha :)

Yesterday we were out with Alan, one of the Young Men, teaching in a small town called Newbury. We were praying right before the lesson and Alan was saying it, all of the sudden the town siren starts to go off! (Like the Tornado Sirens in the midwest, or when there is a natural disaster) Elder Certonio and I looked at each other cause we were both freaked out a bit and Alan kept praying. After Alan finished praying we asked him if that freaked him out at all and he just told us that it was the firestation notifying the firefighters they were needed? Weird... 

For dinner last night we had dinner with the Mitchell's, brother Mitchell went to Davis High! In his basement he has the Old Davis High Auditorium seating as well! I got to sit in them and snap a few pics! They're way cool, Dad, Maybe you even sat in those seats. 
In the spirit of Thanksgiving...

I'm grateful for the Gospel, the Bible, The Book of Mormon, a Modern Day Prophet, cars, warm coats, wool socks, Christmas Sweaters, technology, good food, telephones, pens, hot water, ovens, running water, and so so much more! 

Above all, I'm most greatful for all of you!

I love you all and miss you!

Elder Taylor

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

One Stake Conference to Rule Them All! 11/14/16

 We had the Best Stake Conference I've ever been too this week, man, it was so sweet! I'll give you the run down with the highlights! We had President Sandor (Stake President and future General Authority), President Shields (Mission President) and the Toronto and Detroit Temple Presidents. It was a power house!

We got a call from President Shields on Friday telling us he wanted us to go to all the sessions of Conference, so that included a Leadership, Adult, and General Session. It was tons of fun to be able to go to all and meet with the different leaders and discuss different topics. For the Leadership one we were taken with the Bishops, WML, and Stake President to discuss a few different things. We talked about for one of the topics being called, or being chosen. Basically, when one is called, it is simple and not always from God. But when one is Chosen, it is based on desire, the heart, and is truly Chosen from God, therefore the scripture "many are called but few are chosen" makes more sense. Here are some cool strictures to check out that talk more about it. D&C 3; 4; 105; 50: 13-14 al well as Abraham 3:22-23 and the Articles of Faith.

On Sunday President Sandor gave a talk to all those who lived in homes were there were non-members, less-active members, and split families. He talked about the need to love those who have harmed us, or caused trials to come into our lives and live judgement up to God. He was very bold and blunt in it, and even said "If you can't love those that have harmed you, you are not fit for the Kingdom of God."

President Shields talked about Living in the Fullness of Times, while living in these Perilous times. Often we focus so much on all that's going bad, that we forget we are living in the times just before Christ comes again, where the fullness of the Gospel is available. 1800 years passed by without the fullness of the Gospel and in these Latter-Days we have it!

After The sunday session, President Shields grabbed us and told us to stick around because he was having a YSA fireside and wanted us to stay, so we stuck around. President talked about the Parable of the Good Samaritan and compared the parable to the Plan of Salvation, I'll explain how by sending some notes.

Luke Chapter 10

 30 And Jesus answering said, A certain man went downfrom Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, whichstripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.- This is like the Fall of Adam and Eve, being cast from The garden to Earch, Jericho is a lot lower altitude then Jerusalem. Now we are in a Fallen state, suceptible to death and sin.

 31 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the otherside.

 32 And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him,and passed by on the other side. -The Two bypassers are like other churches, who don't hold the authority to be able to administer the saving ordinances of the Gospel.

33 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came wherehe was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,-The Samaritan is Jesus Christ

 34 And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouringin oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. -Christ Heals us, and the Oil and Wine is his Blood which he shed for us, he heals our spiritual wounds, the beast are the missionaries who carry those who are wounded to the church, which is the inn.

 35 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out twopence, and gave themto the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when Icome again, I will repay thee. -The Inn Keeper is a representative for the members of the church, and the coming of the Samaritan, and when he repays, will be the second coming of the Lord, when all will be made fair, and the just will be rewarded.

The Parable took on a whole new meaning to me as I read this, I love this. 

Kim is doing really well, she came to Stake Conference and Loved it so much! She's going awesome, and she should be getting baptized in the next few weeks! 
Aggie is also doing well, she is working towards baptism in March, march because she is committed to her church as one of the head chairman until march. She was telling us about her friend who she was talking too about her meeting with us, and her friend asked if she would leave their church when the time came, and she told her that if that's what the Lord wanted her to do, she would. And that is what she feels needs to happen. I'm hoping I get to stay around long enough to see her baptized!

Last P-day we went to Brother LaFrance's house, he is a Ninjitsu trainer, and he taught us a few self defense moves, it was tons of fun. We'll probably end up going again. We also went to a chinese market by our house, enjoy the pictures. I felt Like I was in Hong Kong.
Well, I love you all, have a great week. Don't forget to read your scriptures and pray as a family! 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Hillary or Donald? 11/14/2016

I'm so excited for this Election to be over, you'd never guess how many times a day we hear about it up here in Canada. It's ridiculous! Hopefully it will die down in a reasonable amount of time. Transfers have come and gone now, I'm staying here for another with Elder Certonio, this will be 3 transfers together, awesome! We will only have a 5 week transfer this transfer however in order to make it so that the flights for returning missionaries isn't so expensive because of the Christmas Season! This week was a crazy busy one, last week of the Transfer, along with MLC and Zone Council. The time flew by, so here's a quick rundown of the week.

We have been meeting with our investigator Aggie, she is a Mennonite, but loves the Book of Mormon and knows the Church is true. She basically runs the church she attends so it's a bit complicated there, but we're working on that right now. She is always inviting friends for us to come teach, this week we started to teach 2 of her friends, Dale and Bonnie, and we started to teach her as well. It's been crazy there, different people there every time we show up. It's always the best when others find people for us to teach, I'm sure for all those missionaries and Return missionaries out there they can atest to that. 

Tuesday night we drove down to Brampton to spend the Night for MLC, it was fun. We had our Zone Leader Olympics going on and the Closing ceremony was that night, we talked all about the funny things that had happened and all the awesome miracles that had taken place, we talked about how when we put focuses on things, it helps us to improve and grow as missionaries. It applies to everybody, it's really easy to just go with the same things over and over again, but when one truly tries to change, God helps them to make the Focus a normal part of life, it all works through the Atonement, and is this magical principle called "Repentence". :)

We had MLC all day on Wednesday, we talked about some things like Daily Dose (ESL), Teaching the importance of following up, passing investigators to the correct missionaries (Not "Poaching" investigators), and effective planning. It was an awesome meeting, as most MLC's are! I got called on the night before to be a part of the musical Number, we didn't even practice but it turned out alright!

Thursday wasn't too eventful because we had to plan Zone Council, but we had a couple lessons, one of which was with our New Convert Beverly, and her Boyfriend "Traveling Travis" He's a musician, so we got there and he whipped out the Guitar to show us his "Jams" He gave us a CD with his signiture, it'll be worth Millions someday. We had a good lesson, he told us that he was really starting to consider baptism, which is a huge step since last time he said he isn't going to convert!  

Zone Council went  really well on Friday! We went out afterwards and got Sushi, it's like a tradition to get sushi after we put on a Zone Council. After that we had exchanges, I was with Elder Brand here in London, we had a great time! We saw Aggie, she invited a friend over again, and then we got to go by our investigator Chuck. We hadn't been able to see him in a week, but when we got there he told us that he's been reading the Book of Mormon over Skype with his girlfriend, and that he now believes that this is the true church, and that the Book of Mormon is true. It was a bit of a shocker, but If I know anything, it's that the Book of Mormon is a very powerful tool in bringing other unto Christ! While on Exchanges we went by a Less-active member and ended up finding a neighborhood full of so many Middle-Eastern families. It was super fun, we met people form Iraq, Syria, and Iran. My Arabic and Persian aren't too good so we got a ton of families to take Book of Mormon's in Arabic and Persian too. 

Saturday we went out to Strathroy, which is a small town in our area. We went out with one of the Young Men getting ready to go on a mission, his name is Alan. His brother is serving in Tooele right now. He's awesome, but we saw some members out in Strathroy, it's a beautiful town out there!

Sunday was a great day, it was actually really warm! We had some investigators at church, Kim came out, she's doing really well. She has a Date set for the end of November so we are excited to stay and continue teaching her! For dinner we got to the Hill's. They have a big family, 7 kids. It was crazy, but we had the best steaks I've had since I've been in Canada! Also, on the side note, Kerra came up to the YSA branch on Sunday so we got to see her at church!
I'm grateful this week for modern day prophets and apostles, we are so blessed to have them and to have the restored Priesthood here on the Earth today. I testify that it's true, it is the power of God. Miracles still exist, I've seen them.

Love Elder Taylor

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Happy Halloween 10/31/2016

💀The End of October is here, November is tomorrow! Another month has come an gone! This last week was one for the books, I got to see lots of amazing things this week. We had a dinner out at the Kelly's last week, they are from Birmingham England (Same City as Elder Jones), they served a mission in Samoa, and they now live on Fanshaw lake, it's BEAUTIFUL, Such an amazing piece of property. 
They even finished off the meal with cheese and grapes, I felt like I was back with Elder Jones. Last week we got a call from a member who wanted us to go see his sister in the Hospital, so we made our way to the Hospital, and ended up in the Oncology Unit. It was a powerful opportunity, it ended up being a less-active sister who was in the Hospital, as we gave the blessing you could see the gratitude in her eyes. I'm very grateful to be a Priesthood holder, such an amazing opportunity I have, and how grateful I am! Last week while emailing we got a phone call from a lady asking us if we were a "HillBilly Church" We had no Idea what that was but we invited her to come check out the church, so she caught a bus down to the chapel where we gave her a chapel tour, she was super interested, so we met with her again last week and then she came to church on Sunday! Her name is Kim, and we were even able to set her with a Baptism Date! She's doing awesome! 

I got to go out to Windsor on Exchanges this last week with Elder Brown, he's from Cedar City. We graduated the same year, he has been out for about 8 months on his mission! Before the mission he played Water Polo, and he is super talented with music. He also worked installing solar fields prior to his mission. While in Windsor I got to see Detroit accross the river, "Oh Say can you see"! Beautiful sight.
 While we were down there I got to do the Baptismal Interview for their investigator Kenny, it went awesome! Kenny is from China and has been in Canada for 6 weeks, he met the missionaries his 2nd week here and is being baptized next week, He's doing great! I also got to see Ryan Obrian, who I got to interview for his baptism way back 8 months ago! It was cool to be able to see how well he is doing. 

After District meeting in Chatham, we got to go have lunch with Kerra and a bunch of the members in Chatham. It was fun to see everybody there, Kerra hit her 6 month mark last week which is so amazing to see!

I'm so grateful to be a missionary, to be able to share the glorious gospel with all of our Heavenly Father's children. The Scriptures have taught me a ton, and I am so grateful for them! 

Last week as a zone we all had a pumpkin carving contest too! 
Love, Elder Taylor