It’s getting to that season! Personally, I can’t wait for Thanksgiving, because it’s not celebrated here in Vietnam, so all the ex-pats in our branch are going to get together and hold a big thanksgiving dinner with each other, and the missionaries are invited (we’re ex-pats in a sense too right?)
This week was so much fun! For our P-day, right after I emailed, we went with a member to a 3D art gallery and it was soooo cool! I took a ton of pictures and I’ll attach them below! I might have to do a separate email for pictures along with that…
This week we also went to the hospital to take some tests. Elder Tri has been really sick and lost a lot of weight this week, so they took some samples from him to see what was up. They think it may be parasites and/or tuberculosis, butr we’ll know for sure in a few days. We also had transfers this week, and Elder Tri and I will be together again, probably for this one last transfer.
We got to have some good lessons with people this week. We got to teach Anh Tay and Anh Phuc. Remember how I said Tay was a platimum investigator? Here’s another reason why: As we were getting ready to have our lesson with him, he shows up to the church with a friend! Apparently, he’s been talking about his experiences learning with us to his buddies and at work, and so I guess one day, one of them was curious and he came along with learn with Anh Tay. We had no idea Tay was planning on bringing along a friend, so we called an audible and taught them both at once. It was great. So with that, we have a new investigator and with the way he’s been feeling about where his life is right now, I think the Lord has really prepared him so that he can be receptive to the message we have for him. His name is Anh Quang.
We also taught a recent convert over Skpe who lives in Canadia. One of the ex-pats here has a little sister (Sis. Smoot) serving there and they recently converted a Vietnamese woman. After her baptism, they wanted her to take the post-baptismal lessons in her native language, so we coordinated with Sis. Smoot over email, and got a time to Skype with her recent convert. That RC will actually be moving to Saigon in the coming months because it’s too cold for her in Canada, so in the future, maybe we can teach her face to face, because as cool as it was to teach over Skype, there were a lot of technical difficulties…
In other news, Elder Vuong, the temporary missionary from Hanoi, finished his mini-mission, and flew back home to Hanoi to prepare for his actual mission (he’s going to Anaheim and he leaves on December 14th). Elder Vuong, I know you’re on this email list, so if you’re reading this right now, I just wanna let you know that we miss you and it was awesome serving with you in Hanoi and in Saigon. You are one of the most humble people I know and I know that that will be one of your greatest tools as you serve in Anaheim! Love you brother!
Finally, to end our great week, we got to ride our bikes out about an hour and a half to the provinces Binh Duong to teach the branch president. It was a good lesson, and I love province. The surroundings are much more pleasing to the eye than urbanized Vietnam. So the scenery and the good dinner we had with their family made the hour and a half struggle to get there worth it.
As I’m out here serving longer and longer and learning more, I’ve found as I’ve focused and more on the work here, other things seem to dwindle in importance. It’s kind of scary because I don’t want it to sound like I’m caring less about what goes on back at home, but to be completely honest, I really am starting to love the work and as the weeks go by, there really is nothing else I’d rather be doing. Don’t get me wrong, I love you all and there are times where I miss home, but The Work is special and for the next 20 months or so, God comes first in everything. I’ve found that the moments I enjoy and care the most about are the spiritual ones, whether it be in a lesson, studying, talking to my companion about doctrine, or reading the emails of those who have had spiritual experiences back at home. It’s hard to explain, but I suppose only someone who’s actually been out here doing the things that missionaries do can truly understand what I feel. Christ taught that whosoever shall lose themself in His service will find themself. That’s true. As I’ve gradually started to lose myself in the work, I’ve also started to gradually forget who I was before I cam out and find out who it is that my Heavenly Father wants me to be. It’s truly a blessing and I don’t think I’d be able to learn all of this if I wasn’t out here. I’m grateful for all of your support and love, but more importantly, I’m grateful for the love and support that the Lord has for me, and for each and every one of his children.
God bless you all, especially in this Thanksgiving and upcoming Christmas season!