I have been called as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to serve in the Taiwan Taipei Mission for 24 months. (Sept. 2016-Sept. 2018) This blog is a compilation of the weekly e-mails I send home, which contain my experiences, thoughts, and feelings in the mission field.
Another great week in paradise filled with miracles.
We started the week deciding to make a huge effort to promote the Christmas activities this week: the Christmas eve dinner/nativity performance and Sacrament on Sunday. And its been super successful. We started Operation Bring All the Members Cookies and Train Them on How to Invite to the Christmas Activity and it seems to be working great. Working with members is probably the most important activity to really get an area going. Members are so necessary in missionary work, we almost can't do it without them especially when we're trying to take advantage of big activities like these.
But with all this time serving the ward, we haven't spent as much time on the streets contacting, but its still been great. We've actually been more successful in less amount of time then most days when we spend all day outside. For example on Thursday, 2 people came up to us right when we got to our area and asked to know more about th…
Well this week has just been wonderful. And thanks to everyone for their birthday wishes.
My birthday was absolutely great cause I thought I kept it a secret most of the day. But I guess someone (Elder Hammond) told the zone leaders and I got a little shoutout there. And someone else (mom) told Sister Ni so she through a little surprise birthday and disguised it as a lesson with a new investigator. But it was actually super great even though they all knew it was my birthday cause we got to teach a lesson to our soon to be full member family, with our super cool ward mission leader, Weng Bo Ren, and of course the Ni family. So super cool day.
So yeah the language is coming.. slowly but still coming. I've been trying to step out of my comfort zone a bit by talking more on the streets and doing more phone calls and its been a success for the most part, but there have been some slip ups. For example this past week I was calling an investigator to confirm that he's be going to chu…
So this week was like sooooo busy. When we first got here and like opened the area I was thinking we were just going to be on the streets trying to find people for like the whole transfer, but we already have appointments like all the time and are seeing so many miracles! I'm really loving this.
But anyways last Friday we met with our part member family kids I talked about last time. Their names are Charlie (12 years old) and Yvonne (10 years old) and they are the coolest! And their lessons have been going great. Elder Hammond said that Charlie already understands priesthood authority better than most adult investigators. So they're just golden. There's so much excitement about the gospel in their home now and its a great place to feel the spirit. Me and Elder Hammond were talking about what great of an opportunity this is because we talk to so many families and its just not their time to accept the gospel, but you always wonder how it would feel to be the missionaries who…
Hey, so first full week in Taiwan and it was super
productive. This whole opening a new area is super tiring. We try to spend as
much time as possible on the streets trying to find new investigators and its
really starting to pay off, we've met some super cool people and tonight's schedule
is actually full with appointments.
So Thanksgiving was last Thursday so that was fun. We
spent the whole day out finding as normal but a couple Sisters in the ward
prepared a little "American Thanksgiving" and it was the cutest thing
ever. There was of course a big turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, but also stuff
like fried rice and other Taiwanese foods. So super grateful for them. This week we had a little more focus on the members. When
we first got in the ward there were a few members that were super excited to
have Elders but it seemed like nobody wanted us to come visit them and some
actually seemed a bit reluctant to even talk to us. So yeah we knew we had to
do something abo…
Hi Sister Erickson, this is Sister Ni from Taiwan. Your son is currently serving in our ward. He is an awesome and outstanding missionary, we are very blessed to have him! He helped fix our tree in the front yard, which we are so grateful for his service. Thank you! -- love, the Ni Family
So Tuesday morning we left the MTC to Taiwan. The flight was super long but we saw a couple miracles along the way and met some pretty great people. When we arrived Wednesday night, we were greeted by President Jergenson, his wife, and the assistants, and they're all super cool.
We got to the mission office at like 9:30 or 10 pm and got some street food, which was super good. We stayed the night in the mission office across from the temple and it was beautiful. Taiwan is sooo beautiful. The next day we got up early and went to the Grand Hotel so more beautiful Taiwan and then I got my trainer, Elder Hammond.
Elder Hammond is super cool and is about a year and a half into his mission. He's super driven and has a lot of urgency with how he goes about the work. So yeah he's a great missionary and I'm super excited to work with him. We were assigned to labor in the area of Zhu Bei 3, which is on the west coast of Taiwan and we could actually see the ocean from our apartm…
Elder Erickson's zone at the MTC at 4am MST before these 6 missionaries left for the airport. Shared by the sister in the Batman hoodie.
They arrived in Taiwan after a very long flight. The sister missionary who is the nurse over the mission shared these photos. Saying "New missionaries arrived tonight! They look great for such a long trip! Tomorrow will be training starting in the early morning and in the afternoon they find out who their trainers are and off to their areas!" That's the senior missionary sister that takes care of patron housing with her husband. The missionaries stay there tonight.
Another super productive week in the MTC. They go seem to go by faster with each week. It's kinda scary but I'm super excited to get to Taiwan. I leave the MTC at 4 in the morning on Tuesday and arrive in Taipei at 7 PM on Wednesday.
This past week has been relatively uneventful. The language is slowly coming and i'm starting to learn some characters. I'm kinda at this odd point where my English is getting worse but my Chinese is still terrible.
Last Wednesday, received the replacement Cantonese district. Most them are British but there is one Elder from Germany and one Sister from Korea. I actually tried talking with the German Elder in German but I found that most of the words coming out of my mouth were Chinese instead, which was a bit frustrating, but I guess it's the language I need right now. It's always nice having the international missionaries in the zone. They offer some very interesting insights into how strange American life can be and some especia…
Yeah so two more weeks till Taiwan! My district gets our flight plans on Friday and then it's the final stretch. So I'm super excited and I now see why the past district said its easy to lose focus the last 2 weeks. Sometimes you just start thinking about leaving and you forget your purpose here at the MTC. So to combat this, last week I started making some rather serious goals to kinda hold myself accountable at the end of each day. And it has really worked. I really wish I took our teachers seriously when they talked about setting goals when I first arrived here.
But again nothings really changed here at the MTC except for I lost more of my friends when the Cantonese district left on Tuesday. These were some of the best friends I have ever made and I only knew them for 5 weeks here at the MTC. But yeah I'll attach some pics with those studs at the end of this email. So yeah I'll miss them but the new Canto district is coming in today. And since me and Elder Hyde were…