Tuesday, October 25, 2011

"Lifting Burdens"

Hi Everyone!!!

I hope you are all having a great Tuesday! How is the Halloween season? Please send me pictures if you think of it!

My Chinese name is Leùhng (said like "learn" with a low falling tone.) It means grain. When I introduce myself I say, Ngóh hain Leuhng jí muih.

I want to be sure I tell you about our lesson yesterday. Our teacher is playing an investigator named Sorren. We've been struggling to teach him for the past few lessons because he wants so bad to do God's will, but doesn't want to ask for anything in his prayers. It's frustrating because we can teach him everything, but it does no good if he is not praying to find out for himself if it's true. That is so important!! Finally on Saturday we figured out what part of his concern was and decided to teach him again about the atonement. Sister L. had the great idea to show him a MormonMessage video called "Lifting Burdens" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coef8G5ax6E It's really good, you should watch it. We watched it and his attitude changed. He said he felt good and really liked it, and he wasn't asking as many hard questions as before. Most importantly he said he would pray about it!!! Wow! This really strengthened my testimony of the atonement. Not only did Christ suffer and die so that I can be forgiven of my imperfections, He suffered so he can know exactly what I am going through during any trial I face. This makes it so much easier for me to trust that trials are for my good and that I will never be given more than I can handle, because He knows how it feels! I also think it's cool that Heavenly Father realizes we're human and that we learn in different ways, that's why there are videos and pamphlets and books. He want's to make it as easy as possible for us to understand His gospel! He really loves us!

Crazy thoughts! We have 34 days until HK! That's 1 month and 3 days!! Our younger district comes to the MTC tomorrow. Apparently 3 of the elders are from outside of the US! The new sisters get to live with us too!! Sister R., one of my roommates from spring term, is in the MTC!!!! It's soooo fun to see her!

Elder Scott spoke at the devotional last Tuesday, it was incredible! He talked about recognizing the Spirit. I was really touched by the fact that most of his talk consisted of him reading scriptures and asking different missionaries what they thought. He really trusts us and our calling. For these next 18-24 months we are the Lord's representatives too, and he realized how much we could teach ourselves with the scriptures!

I hope you have a great week and a Happy Halloween! Yikes! October is almost over! This is the BEST place I could be right now!

Ngóh ngói Leíh deih (I Love ya’ll)
Leùhng jí múih (Sister Nelson)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Meal trays

The whole district
Personal study outside
50 days until they go to Hong Kong!!!!

Hi Everyone!!!

I'm almost halfway done here!!!! Yikes!!! Our older district left yesterday, it is so weird!!! Elder B and Sister M left here at 4:30, but they won't get to Hong Kong until 10 tomorrow morning (2 am our time!) The next district comes in next week, and they'll be asking us all the crazy Cantonese questions! Now I know why the older district couldn't answer me!! I hear time flies once you're the older district, I can't wait!!!

Last week, Richard I. Heaton, who is in charge of MTC Training gave a devotional. He said that during his training with the general authorities, he was taught that we could better help the church come into new members and not just them come into the church “if we do a better job teaching the law of tithing.” The speaker at his training asked Brother Heaton to make it happen. It was an incredible devotional! I never realized how important tithing is. It tests our faith and thus builds it, it opens the door for blessings and allows us to be worthy to enter the temple. It really changed how I viewed teaching not only tithing, but all the commandments. First of all, I need to be bold and let them them know they are commandments, even praying and reading the Book of Mormon. Then I need to tell them why so they will want to keep the commandments! Ah!

The most important thing that happened this week is Tina agreed to be baptized!!!!!!!! Ahhhhhh!! Even though she is just my teacher pretending to be an investigator, it's still a big deal because they won't agree unless they really feel the spirit and feel like it is truly something they would want to do. Heavenly Father is amazing! I can't believe we are actually teaching this much in Cantonese!! There is seriously no way I could do this without His help, this is a miracle! We taught her about the Word of Wisdom yesterday, and because of my companion, Sister N's new calling as coordinating sister we weren't able to start preparing until 10 Sunday night! However we were able to find the new words we needed and teach her about it and she seemed to understand! It is really amazing!

One more highlight, during weekly planning on Saturday, we overheard our Elders discussing how they wanted to make sure they were holding doors for us more (they were already doing a stellar job) Now, they are racing to the doors to have them opened for us, and they hurry to put their trays away after meals so they can take ours. Wow!! I am impressed we have awesome Elders!!!

Well, I'm out of time. I hope you have a great week!!! I love you so much!!

ngoh ngoi Leih deih! (I love You guys!!)

Sister Nelson

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Hello family!

Thanks so much for your e-mail Mom – and Dad and Nathanael for your letters! I love hearing everything that's going on at home. I wish I could respond to everything in detail. Keep it coming, that way I won't have to spend forever catching up when I get back!! I love reading your letters!

The Temple was great today! I love being able to go each week. Until it gets cold, we get to go on a temple walk on Sundays too!!!

We hang out with our older district (the Hong Kong missionaries that have been here longer) all the time, but they leave for Hong Kong on Monday!!! :( It's freaking us out a bit, what are we going to do without them?!!!

I have to tell you I was super confused when you said there wouldn't be mail on Monday, I asked Sister M., our Branch President's wife, and she told me that it was Columbus Day!! We really do live in a bubble here! Speaking of which, what's up with cantaloupe? There are signs in the cafeteria saying that the cantaloupe they have is from California and fine to eat, which means actually it's not fine!!! If you think of it once in awhile, I would love to hear some news updates, especially if there is any major happening in the world!!!

I forgot last week, I counted 23 Scripture Mastery verses during General Conference!!!!

Ok so language story ready? The word for children is yih (falling) leuih (rising) and concerns is yih (falling) leuih (level). Can you see the problem? We were teaching our investigator (our teacher pretending to be a 17 year old girl) about prayer and I asked if she had any "concerns" (but I actually said children!!) My companion, Sister N., seeing the look on T's face thought maybe we had asked an intrusive question and tried to save the situation by saying "that's ok we all have our own private "concerns." Ooops!!! That's ok the word for "to live" is jyuh (low) and the word for "pig" is jyu (high). So the elders were promising an investigator that if he prayed, God would bless his life, but actually said, "God will bless your pigs! " Oh man, it's a really good thing we're not in Hong Kong yet!!! But the language is coming. We've kind of plateaued, so we're trying to knock ourselves out of it. We've made a goal to SYL (speak your language) more and it's working!!! We also have a new "investigator." There is an Elder going to Taiwan, who is from Hong Kong so he speaks perfect Cantonese and Mandarin. They offered to let him leave early, but he decided to stay for the full 12 weeks and help the other missionaries. He agreed to pretend to be an investigator for us. We met with him yesterday, and it was great! It's so cool to be able to talk to a native!!! It was still rough, I have a hard time understanding the language, but we taught him to pray, and the spirit was there! So we were communicating something!

We went to the Teaching Resource Center (TRC) for the first time on Saturday. Volunteers (usually RMs) come in and we get to teach them. While at BYU I had gone a few times as a volunteer for sign language, so it was really weird to be on the other side of the spectrum! It went well, since we didn't know who we would be teaching we couldn't prepare a very specific lesson which was perfect because we got to rely completely on the Spirit. I brought in my word notebook with me and had it open to some of the words I thought I would need, but I ended up not using it at all!! It is crazy how fast we are learning this language, but I always have to remind myself to thank Heavenly Father and to keep asking for His help. It makes all the difference when I am relying on the Lord to help me learn the language.

So I want to tell you a bit about our practice investigators. "Sorren" is played by our teacher Brother C., and we have a lot of fun teaching him. He asks lots of questions, but also jokes and makes us laugh. It definitely helps the lessons feel more personable. Last week we taught him to pray, it was incredible! We had just talked about prayer in our class the day before so my companions and I knew how important the lesson was. We all wanted him to feel the Spirit through prayer and also to feel God's love for him. That really motivated our lesson and made me want to really listen to his concerns and try and understand even though I couldn't always understand the words he was saying. I know that the actual person sitting in front of us is a Return Missionary (RM) and knows everything we're teaching, but I've learned that no matter how many times we've heard it, we can always learn from the message of the gospel!!

Ahhhh! times up!!!

I love you sooooo much!!!!


Sister Nelson

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Candy Bars!!!


General Conference was great! Being a missionary doesn’t change the fact that you get sore after sitting so long, but I'm glad I took notes because I re-read them today and was reminded of how much I got out of conference! My two favorite talks were by Carl B. Cook on Saturday afternoon about "looking up." Wow! Even general authorities get overwhelmed by their callings, but they know how to snap out of it and love their work, I can do the same! So far so good! The downs don't last long at all, it's hard to pity yourself too much here, it wastes too much time! I also LOVED Sister Dalton's talk Sunday morning! Wow!!! It was really inspiring! Young Women’s always stressed the importance of Virtue for women and it never hit me how important it is for Priesthood Holders as well. I guess I knew it, but I didn't have a word for it. I know that those young men who honor their priesthood and live righteously can do great things! The Elders here are such a testimony of that!

My schedule is different every day, usually we have 3 hours of class in the morning, and 3 at night, one hour for personal study, one hour for language study, an hour for Technology Assisted Language Learning (Tall) in the computer labs, and hour for PE and 1/2 hour for lunch and dinner at 11:30 and 4:30. Class time is usually 1 hour of language, 1 hour of teaching fundamentals, 1 hour of coaching missionary study (we meet with our teacher and they help us improve our studying and goal setting), 45-60 minutes of reading the Book of Mormon together, and an hour of progressive investigator (where we teach our investigators/teachers or if it's not our time to teach, we have companionship study). Progressive investigator happens in both the morning and afternoon. If that doesn't add up, it's a variation of those classroom options each day. On Wednesdays we have "service" for 90 minutes where we help clean a residence hall.

I'm sooooooo excited about the new Provo Temple!! That's about 5 blocks from where I lived last year and no hill!!! It would be so great if it was finished before I graduated, but I doubt it. Oh well, blessings for future BYU Cougars!

So crazy! My roommates are gone! They left for Portland, Oregon Yesterday!!! That means 3 things, 1) Last night was freakishly quiet in our room, 2) I'm moving to a bottom bunk!!!! 3) We get new roommates tomorrow!! We could easily see 3-4 different sets of girls in our time here. Crazy right?!

Story of the week!!! Our teacher, Bro C, is super fun! His parents grew up in Hong Kong, so he grew up speaking Cantonese. He has a crazy history and was kind of a hippie, but joined the church and served a mission. We've become quite attached to him, and anytime we seem him pass our class we yell out to him (somewhat offended) if he doesn't come in and teach us. He is really reserved and doesn't show a lot of emotion, so he just acts pretty awkward when we do that. Anyway, we play this game at the beginning of class, he asks for our favorite dessert, book ice cream etc. and whoever's is closest to him gets to say the prayer. Last week he asked our favorite candy bars. He remembered all of them and Friday we came into the classroom to find candy bars on each of our chairs with a TON of amazing missionary quotes. It totally made our day!!! It was so sweet of him to do that for us! He does actually care for us and doesn't think we're a bunch of annoying missionaries!

Ahhh!! Well I've gone over 1 minute!! That means I have only 29 next week!!! Yikes!!

Love You!!!!!!!!

Sister Kasey Nelson