Tuesday, January 31, 2017

I Love The Bus 1/30/17

What a week, I'm sure you're all curious about transfers! We're both staying in London, in fact all the Elders in our ward are staying so it's about to get real. President Shields loves keeping companions together for a longer amount of time and in areas for a long time, which I love. This will be my third area I've spent 6 months in, it's pretty sweet! I love the ward so that's pretty awesome. Something cool, up in Barrie there is now a YSA branch. Elder Bliss (Old Companion) is now in Barrie YSA. I love it up there, I was so happy to hear that, the work there is booming. Also, I just found out that one of my Investigators, James, there is going to be getting baptized in 2 weeks! So awesome! 

This week we had a Zone wide challenge to talk with as many people as we could throughout our days. So in between our appointments we went crazy. We talked to 245 people over a 6 day period. We were pretty impressed to talk with that many along with all of our appointments we had. We some some cool miracles, while we did it we found 4 Less-active members who we are going to go see. Some of them even are part-member families that are pretty interested in learning about the church as well. The time has come! So exciting. 

On Friday the Chinese Sisters needed a car so we got their bus passes :) 
Best day, I love busing, as a missionary at least, you can always talk with people, it's just overall a great time. We were all over the place, and met some really cool people. The Chinese sisters called us to tell us they were done with the car but we wanted to keep the bus passes. They told us the bus we were about to get on would have nobody to talk to, so we might as well get the car. We had faith and took the 17 bus, and I ended up talking to a lady who has been to church before and has been trying to contact a member of the church for a long time. I was able to get her info to pass onto the member. It was a good thing we got on that bus! 

On Wednesday we had a world-wide missionary broadcast that was live from church headquarters. It consisted of Elder Oaks, Anderson, and Bednar, Sister Oscarson, and the head of the missionary department. It was really good, we talked about the importance of repentance, and how we must teach it very clearly and help those we teach to repent. It was cool, it's something I've been thinking about a lot lately, and I learned a lot about how I can better help people prepare for baptism! One of my favorite quotes was shared by Elder Anderson, he said

"You know you are speaking by the power of the Holy Ghost, when you learn something from what you say."

That is so true, so many times on my mission have I experienced this, in teaching, or in meetings, it's a very cool principle to look at. Lastly in the meeting, our missionary schedule changed. It's still up in the air a bit about what exactly will be different. We have MLC this week where we'll learn everything so I can give a more in depth explanation next week, but basically it give mission presidents more power to make changes to the schedule. Some things that will change is that our planning is now in the morning instead of at night. I'm excited to see what happens. 

Last experience, the Chinese sisters brought an old Taiwaniese man to church yesterday, his name was William. The Sister had to go to the YSA ward so we took him around a bit and helped him out.. He's hillarious, and doesn't hear very well. So you can imagine our conversations were a bit difficult, but hey what a guy. He's coming to church again on Sunday, I can't wait!

That's it for the week, I love you all, don't forget to Pray and Read your scriptures!

Elder Adam Taylor

We have a monthly report that takes a few hours on the phone, so Elder Layton resolved to not have a sore neck this time around.
 Also, Paanchi is the squirrel that frequently visits our Balcony, but the birds keep eating the food we leave for him...

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Church Hopping 01/23/17

Another Week in the books, it's week 7 of the transfer here now. We have an extra long transfer because of Christmas, it mixed things up! We'll see what this week has to offer as it comes to an end, I hope I get to stay another but I have no idea, I've been here for 3 transfers already, so we'll see what happens. Last P-day was awesome, we decided we wanted to go check out some other churches here in London so we headed out to explore, we went to a big Catholic Basillica down town, it was gorgeous, it reminded me of Adelaides Cathedral in San Francisco that we went to a few years ago. 
We left there and headed over to a Mosque, and when we got there all, all of these Muslim's started showing up and running inside, we were a bit confused so we asked one and he told us to go in with them. So we did :) They brought us into their prayer hall and set some chairs up in the back for us to sit at while they said Salat. Salat is a prayer they say 5 times a day. It was way cool to get to watch, and we talked with the Imam after, which is basically the pastor to the Mosque that leads the prayer. Super good guy, and it was cool to get to see how other religions practice and live their beliefs.

At Daily Dose class this week, we had 4 students show up! It was awesome, we had two students from Syria and 2 students from China come. The Sister that was supposed to teach didn't show up so 5 minutes before I was assigned to teach the class! It surprisingly went super well. I really enjoyed teaching English, it was fun. We got to give the guys from Syria and chapel tour afterwards as well and then we were showed them the Baptismal font and taught them about baptism. 
I had exchanges this week with Elder Flint, he's from Woodland hills, UT. He's awesome, he's a Spanish Elder so I got to refresh some of my spanish, which isn't very much. The night before exchanges we met this super nice family from Iraq who spoke little english, they invited us over the next day so On exchanges we went by and tried to teach them. They asked if we could help them learn English so we are now reading the Book of Mormon with them to help them learn English and teach them on the way. 

The YSA sisters had a baptism this last weekend, and the girl decided she wanted a missionary to baptize her, so earlier last week we got a call and the Sisters asked us if we could. I ended up being able to be the one to perform the ordinance, which was s super awesome opportunity! It's such a special opportunity to be able to perform such a special ordinance.

 We had dinner with Hesam on Sunday and during dinner he wrote out the Persian Alphabet for us. 
So we are now trying to read every arabic or persian store sign we see. Needless to say it's not going so well, but we have faith! 

Aggie is doing well, she is still pushing along towards her baptism in March! 

This week I've been reading through the Book of Corninthians this last week and I love how Paul teaches the Corinthians. It might be my favorite book in all the epistles so far! 1 Cor. 4:20 is one of my favorites! For the Kingdom of God is not in Word but in Power!
Elder Adam Taylor

Monday, January 16, 2017

Ghadamet Roo Chesham 1/16/17

What a week! Here's a few highlights of some of the great things that happened! Here's a cool story, we've been meeting with Aggie for a couple months now, she has been doing super well, she is reading the Book of Mormon a ton, and loves it so much! She recieved revelation she needed to read Alma 24, as she did she recieved a prompting that in order to be baptized she needed to fully commit to the church, and in doing so would have to leave behind her other church so that she could be fully committed. It was amazing to see the Lord work with her through the spirit.

After District meeting on Friday, some of the Elders told us they had a surprise for us, so they disappeared and showed up with 2 huge bowls of chicken feet they got from the chinese market... 
I'm not sure what the point of eating them was or is, there is no meat on them, it's just a little bit of skin. There's more meat on a small chicken wing. I can mark that one off the list.

Saturday we got to go to the temple with Hesam for his first time. We went to a baptism session, it was so cool to see Hesam be baptized for his Dad and Grandparents. 
As I sat in the temple I reflected on the importance of baptism. It is such an amazing opportunity to be there, and this morning I was reading in Doctrine and Covenance this morning in section 18, it talks about that only by the name of Christ can we be saved. When we are baptized we covenant to take upon the name of Christ, therefore, literally, it is only by his name, being taken on upon us, that we can enter the kingdom of God. Just like Christ taught to Nicodemus. After the temple We were able to have lunch after as well at Punjabi Tadka, where you can get 3 Samosas for a dollar, needless to say we had plenty! We also got some Zubia, not sure if that's how it's spelt but it's an Indian dessert, it's like funnel cake kinda..
Sunday after Church Hesam wanted to come out with us so the three of us hit the streets, saw a few people and met this cool guy named Hotas, who we are going to see tonight! Hesam invited us to come to his place for dinner as well afterwards, so we did and had rice and Shiraz Salad, which is basically a cucumber and tomato salad. Anybody that knows me knows I hate cucumbers, but I'm not going to lie, it was super good! I'm all about the Shiraz Salad now. After spending basically 2 days with Hesam, we have learned how to say, or how to try to say, a bunch of Farsi sayings. It's a work in progress that's for sure.
 This week we also started an ESL class, so we're super excited to get that going. We are making a big push and hoping we will be able to see some huge miracles that come from it. London has a lot of potential for it, so we are excited to see what happens!

Love you all!

Elder Adam Taylor

Waffles & A Close Call 1/9/17

What a week, it was quite the adventure. After Preparation day on Tuesday we had to drive to Brampton for MLC, we spent that night down there because MLC starts at 8am and we have a waffle breakfast at 7am. It's always fun to talk with all the Zone Leaders about everything that's going on in the mission. I also love hearing about what's happening in Barrie! I always spend like 20 minutes talking to Elder Bliss about what's happening there. MLC was awesome, we've been focused on goal setting and planning on a mission recently, so we continued to talk about that. It can be pretty difficult, but I look forward to becoming better at it and it's definitely a work in progress.

After MLC we made our way home, and got hit with snow on the way back, so it took us quite a while. By the time we got back, the day was over which was too bad cause we wanted to get a few things done that day and see a few people. Oh well, the next day went well. Friday came around and we had our monthly Zone Council, we had a really good time. We talked about finding joy in missionary work by fully committing to the Lord, one of those ways is by using our personal talents to help other and find those to teach. The Sister Training Leaders talked about goal setting and had a hot chocolate drinking contest, I thought someone was going to die while it was taking place. Luckily everybody survived.

Aggie has been doing very very well, she came to a baptism on Saturday in the London 2nd ward and loved it so much. It was the first baptism she has been too and all she talk about afterwards was how excited she is for her baptism in March. Hopefully I get to be here for that! If I stay next transfer I will, we'll see what happens!

We started teaching this super awesome lady named Karen this week, she is a single lady who works from home. We tracted into her a few weeks ago and were finally able to talk with her about the Book of Mormon. She lived in Samoa for a few years and while she was there she had met with the missionaries there a few times but nothing ever really came. Sounds like the missionaries got transfered or something. We'll be seeing her in a few days, so we're looking forward to that. 

At the baptism with Aggie on Saturday during the talks I learned a few things that were super cool. The first was shared by President Hoffsteter, he compared the word "Remission" used in the context of baptism and cancer. It was interesting, he talked about how remission in cancer is to be freed from and escape the pains and ailments that come with the disease, similarily, when one receives a remission of sins, they are relieved and freed from the burdens of sin. I thought that was a cool way of looking at that term. After that I was thinking about the gift of the Holy Ghost and realized that I've been thinking of it wrong. I thought that the gift would mean more like constant impressions, but I realized more so, it is how we feel, like the fruits of the spirit. So when things happen and as we live our life, we feel differently because the spirit is speaking to us. I hope that makes sense, if not I'll try to elaborate more. 

Sunday morning came around and we got slammed with Snow, we were sitting at this stop light at the bottom of a hill and I looked in the rear view mirror and saw this car pounding down the hill, all the sudden it starts to slide and ends up parked next to us sideways. When I saw it coming I though it was going to hit us, the Lord protected us though! One last thing I learned at church on sunday is how when the scriptures say "Son of Man" it was actually cut short from "Son of Man of Holiness" when referring to Christ in order to save the scribes some writing. Really cool, I've never understood that phrase very well but now I do! Hurrah! 

I love you all!

Elder Adam Taylor

Just Too Tired To See Midnight 1/3/17

Well, I was asleep by 10:40 on New Years Eve, so I celebrated in the morning when we woke up and got ready for church. Elder Layton was trying to convince me to stay awake until midnight, but I was too tired! But we got up for church, and they cancelled classes for the day, I have no idea why, if you can get up for church at 10 then you can stay for 2 more hours. Right? So Church was short on Sunday, but that's all fine and dandy. New years eve we had dinner with the Young's and had Lamb, fancy cheese, and non-alcoholic wine. Needless to say, I was stuffed by the end of the night!

Here's a few quick highlights from the week, I had exchanges with Elder Sabin, he's one of the Assistants, he came to London with me and we almost burned London down together, just kidding, but it was a great exchange! We had a super cool experience, we were working in an area tracking around, in fact the same area where we were led to the Less-active member that I emailed about a few weeks ago. We were talking with a bunch of people and there was this girl walking down the street wearing ear phones, she couldn't hear us so we basically chased her down, she wasn't interested but as we turned around a lady across the street starting yelling at us to come over there, so we did. Turns out it was another Less-active member! She moved to London over a year ago and hasn't been to church since, so we had an awesome talk, she committed to come to church this next week. We are pumped, she's so nice, and it's a part-member family, so you better believe we're excited!

We went out to Strathroy on Sunday after church, and I saw a name on the list of a member in Burlington I had worked with a bit, her name was sister McCohan! We went by and lone behold, she moved here to London 1st ward! No way, it was amazing, so cool to see the Lord work like that.

This week I'm pretty sure everybody has been getting sick in some way. I got a cold earlier this week which is going away now, thank goodness to Buckley's. 
  ic can tell you how nasty it is, literally their slogan is "It taste gross, and it works". Amen to both of those. I've also been using chinese medicine called Pei Poa Kei, it's basically Honey mixed with herbs, oh boy it's nice!

It's currently raining today... It's January, why is it raining? I don't get it.

2016 was an amazing year though, It was the one year of my life that I dedicated 100% to the Lord, no other time will I have the opporutnity to do that. I'm grateful for  this last year, I've never been so close with God, and I've never loved the Gospel  more. This last year I will never forget, and I look forward to taking the things I learned about trusting the Lord into this new year! I love my Savior and Redeemer, and I'm grateful for his everlasting sacrifice!

Love you all!

These clear sidewalks - they call them ANTS. 

PDay - art exhibit - this guy looks like Joseph Smith

Elder Adam Taylor

Christmas 2016 12/27/16

Good Morning, boy did Christmas come and go fast, I hope it was all you dreamed of, and i especially hope you had the time to reflect over the Savior's life and think of what you could give him, in church, the speaker talked about remembering who's stocking should actually be on the fireplace, and that is Christ's. I pray we all might be able to give more this year to him, that we can sacrifice some of the many things we have, and give to him, just as King Benjamin said "When you are in the service of your fellow man, you are only in the service of your God".

Last week I talked about a Spanish speaking family who we met, well the Spanish sisters contacted us and let us know that they actually aren't member of the church, but that she had prayed 2 days before we showed up that she would be able to find a church! How amazing is that!

Zone Conference was on Friday, it was amazing! We talked about Gratitude and were able to give a musical number as well.. I know what you all are thinking, "Elder Taylor a musical number?" but yes, don't worry it was a group. It turned out really awesome however! I'll attach it so you can listen to it as well. :)
Christmas Eve was great, we got to go caroling with a bunch of missionaries here in London! We went around to members and non-members. Following caroling we had dinner with the Hills, fun times! Christmas day was fun, we visited a few families, got to skype home, and had some amazing meals. We had Borsche for lunch and  a typical Ham and potato dinner! It was good!

Not too exciting of a week, besides what I've already told ya! I'll talk to you all next week on Tuesday again!

Elder Adam Taylor

The Picture of the 4 of us, yeah, we all went to Davis! D-A-R-T

Shout out to Elder Bentley 12/19/16

That's right, 6 days til Christmas! Hurrah! We're all super excited for this wonderful season, and the time to celebrate the life of the most important man to ever walk the Earth. First of all, Transfers came, and I'm with Elder Tyson Layton, he is from Warrenton Virginia. It's actually in the Washington DC South mission, so shout out to Elder Bentley! He's been out a year and a half, so a transfer longer than me! We're getting along great, having tons of fun together! This week we got pounded with snow, snow, snow and more snow. We have about 1.5 feet altogether it looks like, it's been cold, between -10 and -18 C, so in the teens to 0 F.  
We recieved a list of newly moved in members to go by and visit for our elders quorum president a few weeks ago and we had 2 amazing experiences while we were doing it! The first one, was a lady named Martha, we went by a few days ago but she lives in an apartment building with no buzzer code name and there was a lady there waiting for a ride that chased us away, she kept telling us to leave and all this stuff so we went back yesterday again to see what we could do to get in, there was this family in the Lobby that opened the door for us so we went up to the 8th floor and found the apartment. We knocked and this older lady answered the door, it was apparent she was surprised to see us, and as well she didn't speak any English, she told us she was from Colombia, and she called her daughter over, who didn't speak much english either. My spanish is not good at all but I felt as though to tell her who we were so I went on "Soy un Misionero de la Iglesia......" She got excited and asked if we were Christians, we told her yes and then she stepped out in the hallway and began to cry. After a very short conversation in broken Spanglish between the 4 of us, we found out she moved here a few years ago and is either a member of the church or met with missionaries and the last time she saw something with the church was on the TV. We told them there was a Spanish branch here and they got excited, we got them the Spanish sisters information, and went our ways. It was amazing to see how the Lord placed us in the right spot at the right time. 

The Second one came as we were tracting a street because nobody answered at the house which we had intended to go to. We knocked door after door and I was reflecting on a story told at MLC. It was of a family who was in their home one day and the father saw the missionaries walking down the street, he felt whatever the missionaries were sharing was true, so he gathered all his family and they prayed that the missionaries would come to them. The missionaries tracted up to their neighbor, turned, and walked away.... 7 years later a set of missionaries knocked on their door, they were baptized 2 weeks later. As I reflected on this story I was thinking about how I can make sure this would never happen to me as a missionary, so we got back to our car from where we were and just as I was thinking it Elder Layton says, "Let's do one more". So we did, and nobody answered... so I was then thinking about how you know which house to go to.. I looked down the street as I though this and looked at all the houses, none stood out as if they were yelling to go there, but I thought that if I knocked one more it would be a particular house, so I said, "One more" and we proceeded to the house. No answer... darn it! Elder Layton then noticed that there was a side apartment on the house, so we peaked around back, and decided to give it a shot. We knocked and a lady answered and told us she was a member.... No way! She lives way up North, so far that it's 3 hours to the closest church. But she was visiting her kids here in London. She hasn't been in a while because of the distance, but she was so excited to see us, we talked and laughed, she also knows a lot of the members in Barrie Stake so we talked about them. She asked for a blessing, so we gave her one, and as we were leaving she thanked us so much for coming by, and being in tune with the spirit. She said that she really needed the visit. Heavenly Father loves all of his children, he really does, I'm learning that more and more every day! 

Those are the cool miracles from the week, for those in the fam, I look forward to "seeing" you on Christmas! I love you all, and am wishing you a happy Holiday. 

Jesus Christ lives, he was born of Mary and lived a humble life, full of service, compassion, and selfless service. May we all follow his example this season, and do our best to light the World!

Love, Elder Adam Taylor