Sunday, November 8, 2015

11-9-15 President's Weekly Letter

Dear Elders and Sisters,

We really enjoyed seeing each of you last week! It was wonderful to have Elder and Sister Wong visit our mission and learn from them. I hope that you were edified (after exploring the definition of “edify” in different languages) by our zone conferences. I felt a great spirit in all of our meetings and Elder Wong also commented on the power that he felt as he met with each group. We are blessed to have such great missionaries in the Taiwan Taichung Mission.

I feel that we must always be looking for ways to improve, both as individuals and as a mission. If we become comfortable with where we are, we will miss opportunities to learn, grow, change and improve. As I listened to your questions and comments this past week and thought about the things I learned from Elder Wong, I felt the Spirit impress upon my mind some changes that we can make to adjust our focus and more effectively carry out our missionary purpose. I am excited to go forward as prompted to hasten the work of salvation.

I have recently had some inquiries as to “chatting” with friends and family during weekly email time. In keeping with the email guidelines in the Missionary Handbook (pp. 20-21), I feel it is appropriate to “chat” back and forth with your immediate family members (parents and siblings) for not more than 15 minutes of your Monday email time, so as not to be “preoccupied.” Please do not chat with any others online or exceed this time limit. This also applies to missionaries using Facebook. I remind you that missionaries should only use their account to email. Do not use any other email service or site that I have not approved.

Here are some of my favorite excerpts from recent missionary emails:

[My companion] and I made a goal to laugh more together, and we've found that our companionship unity has improved a lot. I find myself much happier to be around him and as well as doing the work with him. I'm slowly learning that relationships with companions and learning how to be happy with them despite who they are is great preparation for future marriage haha! The Lord has been teaching me a lot the past week. I am happy with the gospel, and it's definitely working for me.

Something that I have noticed with my time on the island is the harder I work, the more sincere I am, and the more pure intent I have to find people to come unto to Christ and endure to the end, the happier I am. Emotions, situations, investigators, and things planned can change in an instant and it is important that we have our hearts and minds anchored in the work with real intent in order to be a more diligent and successful missionary.

I realized this week the important lesson we learn from Alma and the sons of Mosiah: We must first love the people, and serve them. We are the way that God helps them to see His love for them. Where God's love, through our love, does the converting, no convincing is needed. :) It is such a blessing to be apart of this "labor of love" among God's children.

President Blickenstaff

Mentor of Champions

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