elder Matthew Jones
Taiwan, Taichung mission
Another great week over here in Formosa!! Last Tuesday, we got to go to a really cool museum in our area. It looked like it was a little slice of France right in my mission, so Lij, while you were visiting my mission, I was visiting yours ;) We got to see lots of good friends from the zone and the artwork was spectacular. Reminded me of going to museums in Europe. It was super awesome.
This week, we saw some really cool miracles. Miracle number 1 is we were tracting, and felt like turning down a street. The second door we knocked, we ran into a very golden, very prepared lady. She was so willing to listen to our message and pray with us. She also had a 99 year old grandma with her that was just going off in Taiwanese the whole time haha. I don't think she understood that we couldn't understand her lol. Second miracle was Jason. Jason has been going to church with this member family for months, but he lives in another city so we never thought about teaching him. We were just driving back from church yesterday, and we were like, Jason, do you like church? He said yeah, and then we were like, do you wanna be baptized? We were kinda just spitballing, but he replied very excitedly, yes I really do! We taught him the 1st lesson that night, and he set a goal for 6/17. He doesn't live in our area, but since this family is willing to take him to church every week, we will do what we can for him. He is super cool.
Our other investigators are doing great. We currently have 5 investigators with a goal for June, and I think they could all hit it. I love you all so much!! Have a great week!!
This past week rained like every day, but I still managed to get some cool pics for y'all back home, don't you worry. We had a super fun week, starting with a fun P-day at the beach playin’ football and chillin’ with a bunch of other missionaries. I pulled out my old wide receiver skills from the elementary school days as well as doing my best Russell Wilson impression to throw some TD's. Super fun day, but we all got fried haha.
One of my favorite things that I get to do in this ward is translate church into English for the Filipino members. That has been a really cool experience, and a fun challenge to test my Chinese comprehension. It has been a cool way to see how far I've come, and a great way to provide a service for these strong members of the church.
This week we had a really cool experience with investigators. We realized that lately we haven't been the best at being bold with our baptismal invitations, so we decided to pick out our investigators that haven't been progressing as well as some of our new investigators and give them the baptismal invitation. We were blessed to see 3 of them accept, all for the 24th of June, so we are hoping they can all make it on that day!! One of those goals, a new investigator name Kelly, is an amazing artist and said she wanted to practice drawing white people, so we get to be her models lol. She took lots of pics of us, some of them very weird, and said she'll tell us when she finishes. She's really good, so I'm excited to see what it looks like. Also, random fact, everyone here thinks I look like Justin Bieber lol. I don't really get it, but I'll go with it. You could say we are Taiwan's next top models lol.
We also had a very weird coincidence. We were biking through our secondary area which is just in the middle of nowhere in the mountains, and we hear, "Hey Elders!!" from behind us. We whip around and there are two BYU students in a car that pull us over. They were here on a nursing trip, and apparently one of them said her husband served in Japan and they were trying to explain to the driver what missionaries look like. Cool miracle that we were able to see them and help their guide get a first hand look at missionaries. Later that day, we saw a temple that has tons of marvel superheroes in it. I didn't know that's what the daoists believed in, but hey whatever works I guess haha it definitely was cool to look at.
This week I went on exchanges with Elder M. He's super dope, he was Elder J's companion a while ago and we had lots of fun. We also ate one of the best steaks I've ever tasted. It was up there with Ruth’s Chris. What a day. Their area is huge, and we biked at least 50 miles on that exchange to add to the tons of miles we bike in our own area, so I'm feelin’ great haha.
This week, I was reading in 2nd Corinthians 12:9-10. It says "9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
I really love these teachings by Paul. None of us are perfect, and I am definitely not the perfect missionary nor have all the skills to be the perfect missionary, but through relying on the Lord, we can be strengthened to be what he wants us to be. I know that when we rely on the Lord, we find the true strength to progress and become more like what he wants us to be.
I love you all so much!! Have a great week, and remember to root for the Warriors and read your scriptures! :)
First off, just wanna wish all the mom's out there a happy Mother's Day! You have no idea how much you do for all of us, and we are so thankful. Specifically thankful for my mom and all she does for me :) She's the best! Everyone who knows her is blessed by her wonderful spirit. Love you mom!
Wow, we had such a special week. Last week on P-day, we headed back down to Gaoxiong 高雄 to check out Lotus Pond. It was super pretty, and we had lots of chances to take cool pics, so there should be some good ones this week. We also got to eat some Mexican food which I've been craving for months. It's hard to find Mexican food here, so it was a real treat.
Next super awesome thing about this week was we got to go to the temple!! Elder J had an RC that got baptized last year, and this year she got sealed, so we had the special opportunity to go to her sealing! We got to take the High Speed Rail up there which was so awesome. We went to the ceremony, took lots of pictures, and got to see some cool parts of Taibei. What an awesome day. It was super amazing that that day happened to be the temple day for our ward, as well as the Fengyuan ward where I used to serve, so we got to see some old friends.
And of course the best part of the week was skyping the fam :) Seeing them was so awesome, and being able to chat and tell stories and have a good time was the best. Family is so important, and I'm so grateful for the one I have supporting me all the time. Love you all so much!
That night after skype, we had a really cool miracle. We had a lesson set up with a 林小姐 (Mrs. Lin). She came and we didn't really know what to expect, cause the first thing she asked us was why we can't eat on Sunday. We started sharing, and worked into the first lesson, and realized she was so prepared. She had so many good questions that she's been looking to find answers to, and we were able to answer them and help her out. She was super excited to get a Book of Mormon, and we'll meet with her again this week!
I love you all so much! Have a great week, and remember your moms this week. Sorry this was kinda short, my fingers hurt haha.
好久不見. The times are flying by haha. This week was a really good week! We had lots going on and met some really cool people. We also got to visit a lot of members, so that was pretty fun too. Lots of weird stuff also happened this week, including one of our investigator's dad telling us that his friend was god, and he teleports around the world. We were a little bit shocked by what he was saying haha. We also had some guy yell "Jehovah's witnesses! Amen!" and then cross himself hahaha. He recognized lots of Christian sects, but apparently not ours lol.
Last P-day we went to Monkey Mountain down in Gaoxiong 高雄. That was super dope. It was a super pretty hike, and there were so many monkeys on the way down. They were small and look really cute, but beware, they are vicious. We had a bunch of crackers that we were gonna feed them, and they started jumping on us and going crazy for the food. It was pretty wild. I felt like Nigel Marvin or someone like that from Discovery channel. It was super fun, plus we got to see lots of cool homies.
This week we found a dope investigator. We were originally contacting his girlfriend, and then he walked out so we thought it was gonna be super awkward cause he probably thought we were hitting on his girlfriend or something, but he turned out to be super dope. We met with him later that week, and after the 1st lesson he said he felt like this was something he could accept. He had grown up with no strong beliefs, but he has been to Christian schools and understands a lot. The biggest miracle was he came to church on Sunday!! He said he wants to come again next week, so that was dope. He seems really interested, so we are excited to keep working with him! Willy is doing great too! He is reading the Book of Mormon like a champ, and loving the lessons. Unfortunately, he couldn't come to church cause he had work, but we'll keep praying that his boss will give him some time off!
We got to meet lots of the members this week. I love working with the members, because you really come to love them through serving with them. You really start to care for them and want to help them as much as you can. During our spiritual shares with them, I really felt the spirit guiding us to help them in the ways that they needed to be helped. It was a really cool feeling. We also found out this week that once a month, we get to teach mission prep to the young men and young women in our ward, so if you have any good ideas for that, shoot me an email!
Well that's about it!! I love you all so much. I know this church is true!! Have a great week!!
This week was another great week!! It was definitely one of the fastest weeks of my mission, as well as one of the busiest. We were worried we weren't gonna have much time to find new investigators, but we saw some really cool miracles. To explain the title, we were sitting in a cram school this past week waiting to meet with our investigator who teaches there. All of the sudden, some of the students came down and saw us, and just started screaming "外星人" which means aliens in Chinese haha. Me and Elder J were laughing so hard cause for some reason, no one in Taiwan thinks we can speak Chinese, so they always say funny things in front of us. Good times.
This week, we had Zone Conference. Zone Conference is always the best, and I always feel so uplifted afterwards. We talked a lot about how to most effectively use the tools we can to find the prepared people in our areas. We really have so many options to go about doing this work, and we have been working on expanding our vision this week. We are meeting with a few members this week, and have some cool stuff planned. I'm excited to see how it goes. President Teh is so inspired, I can't explain what it's like to learn from him.
This week we got to go on exchanges with the Zone Leaders, so I was reunited with Elder A :) That was a really fun exchange. Before we started, we set a goal that we wanted to feel like we followed a spiritual prompting. We were tracting, and we felt prompted to turn down a road and tract there. We knocked on a door, and we thought the guy was gonna shut it, but he told his wife to come out, and it turns out she is really interested. That was a super cool miracle, and hopefully the Zone Leaders can start teaching her!
This week we met some really cool people. Like I said, we didn't have a lot of contacting time, but we got a super cool referral named 薛姐妹 (Mrs. Xue) She is super cool, and really needs this message. She is really interested, and we will meet with her again this next week. We also met a dope 蘇弟兄 (Mr Su). He is a really humble college guy who loved our message! He accepted a goal after the first meet, and we met with him the very next day to read with him! That was so awesome. Miracles from hard work I guess!
This week we gave talks in Sacrament meeting. I was really nervous cause I've never given one, and I thought it wouldn't be long enough. I prayed all week and prepared as best as I could. I got up there, and the power that filled me as I felt the gift of tongues working was incredible. I had to cut my talk short, I talked for about 12 minutes in Chinese and it was amazing. I'm so grateful for that blessing that I was able to see.
That's about it! We are heading to Monkey Mountain this week, so that should be fun!! Love you all so much!! Have a good week :)
Matthew is currently serving a 2-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. This Blog is for family and friends interested in following his adventures for the next 24 months.