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Sunday, August 25, 2013

week #25 Monday, Aug. 26, 2013

Hey Everyone,

     Another Great week in Gangshan. Loving every second. This week we did get a really long, small typhoon. Basically Taiwanese were scared of melting all week, and we just had to be creative with how we got lessons. But I survived, didn't get too wet.
     So Elder Casperson has been wanting to have as much fun as possible on p-days so last week we ate a giant bowl of ice w/ fruit, brown sugar, and some really weird stuff no way to describe. It was a bowl that is supposed to be fed to like 10 people, but we ate it as a 4 man. We all felt like we were gonna explode afterwards. But this week we are going to Gaoxiong so that might be pretty fun. We are thinking of going to the mall or the 85 (a tall tower). should be way fun.
     So one crazy news is the ward here wants to have a choir, but...they don't know how to sing parts.  So they have asked us the missionaries to direct the ward choir, this could be pretty interesting but, we all were down for it. Who knew I'd be leading a choir throughout my mission. Crazy.
     Also We have been pretty fortunate, Elder Casperson has the Joseph Smith movie (the one they play in the temple visiting center. They haven't translated it into Chinese, but he had a member ask the area presidency if he could translate it, and he did, and it turned out pretty good. We've been using that for a few different investigator's and they have loved it.  So on other news. I've finally tracked into success. Most people don't want to let us into their house, but I was knocking on the doors and guess what I got in!!!! The guy was super awesome, he has already met with us a few times. We are planning to meet with him again on Tuesday
     So I love working here with the Gangshan ward, they have really been changing from pretty good to "Holy cow they are so awesome" I love it. Plus some of them have found my blog so Hey fellow Gangshan members, Glad to be working with you. Any who, I'm loving working here, I know that the Book of Mormon has power beyond anything explainable, I know that we are in the time of the gathering (been reading Jacob 5 lately got super excited). I miss you all but don't worry still working super hard.
Love you all,

Elder Brandon Bean

Monday, August 19, 2013

week #24 Monday, August 19, 2013

Hey Everyone,

Another Great week in Gangshan. I'm really loving it here. So last Monday we finally got a new microwave, and now we have microwaving ability, if I didn't tell you why we needed to replace it I'll have to tell that story when I get home because it'll take a lot of explanations. Any who, ya, it was super funny because Elder Erekson (the other elder in our 4 man) is super good at haggling, he haggles taxi drivers, buying food, pretty much anything (I don't think the taxi drivers like him). Any who ya we got a pretty nice microwave for just under 3000 kuai. 

We had zone meetings this last week, Pretty crazy, President Blickenstaff changed the way we do numbers in order to help missionaries not focus too much on numbers. They also got rid of nightly follow ups, so basically leaders are loving life now. 

Ummm, we have had an opportunity to go to our secondaries, which was kinda iffy because I don't know them as well as I know Gangshan, so we had to do quite a bit of wandering. But Elder Casperson loved the beach at ziguan, the waves were huge that day (we were on the deck and it was a great view. I think the members told us there is another Typhoon coming so that'll be fun. Then we went to Luzhu, and got very lost but we found our investigator in the end and had an awesome lesson.

So this week we got to help take out tiles, It was great service, but it was so hot, we showed up in our missionary clothes so we were dying from heat.  Especially since we had to wear those face masks to keep us from breathing in all the dust (they where those face masks Dr's usually wear a lot actually) Then they fed us dinner, that was super awesome. 

Church yesterday was AWESOME!!!! guess how many people were there? 120!!!!!!!!!!!!!! we hit the goal, that was the highest attendance has ever been, so now our goal is to try and maintain that for the next 9 months then get a chapel. woot woot!!! 

Everything is going well, finding tons of new investigator's. We are looking to baptize some time soon. The ward is all on fire right now. I can't wait, super excited. I love serving here in Gangshan. Well I guess this is everything. I know that the Church is true, I know that Jesus Christ Really did sacrifice himself, he felt our pains, weaknesses, and sins in the Garden of Gethsemane and he paid the price. I know that through him we can overcome all. We can do anything. Your all in my prayers. 

Love you all,

Elder Brandon Bean

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

week #23 Monday, Aug. 12, 2013

Hey Everyone,
It's been another great week let's see how much is writable and I can get in letter format. So I've had a full week w/ Elder Casperson and I've gotten to know him for real now. He's way funny, great story teller, and fun to be around. He and I have actually gotten used to each other pretty well. Take that "second companion syndrome" that everyone was trying to scare me about. Ya he's from Draper, UT youngest of 3, his parents are serving right now, he does all kinds of sports (including ballroom) and he is planning on shooting for the team at BYU when he gets back. So far no problems really. Sister Burr got a native companion so she's been pretty stressed lately, and Elder Lazenby (the new missionary in the area) has amazing Chinese so he's fitting in well. 
So, they moved me up in English, I teach Intermediate class now, and their English is awesome, I hardly have to use Chinese. I got to talk about ballroom for the cultural share, and they loved it. I was telling them about the different kind of dances and dancing solo style, but they got a good kick out of it. Then I had an awesome spiritual share about prayer and everyone was participating and afterwards one of the soon to be missionaries in the ward came up and said "thanks, that answered a question I've been working on recently" so successful English lesson... I think so. We had fathers day that was pretty awesome, got free food that day from one of our recent converts. Then the next day we went on exchanges w/ the zone leaders, I lead Gangshan while Elder Casperson went to a different city. It went ok, I got lost a couple times, but not too bad, we had lots of success, finding people it was great, we didn't get too much teaching but it was okay. 
Also our mission president has been working w/ the stake presidents and suddenly the ward is amazing, they are calling people and setting up times w/ me to go meet w/ less actives w/ them, or have members come over, basically our ward is awesome! 107 people came to church this last Sunday that was a high for my stay in Gangshan so far, we need a hundred and 20 people there before we can get the chapel so we're gonna keep working. woo!
So that's everything. I'm really loving the mission, We are seeing a lot of awesome things. The church over here in Taiwan is really stepping up, they're getting the fire in their eyes, the drive to do missionary work, or as Elder Nielson said "Catching the Wave". People are being prepared, we are just servants in the process. I've felt the spirit guide us and we've had some great experiences just finding and teaching. I love this church, I love this work, I love this mission. I know that the church is true, I know that we are starting a new era of missionary work. I'm excited.
Your all in my prayers, I miss you, love you, You're all awesome, Be safe. Remember God, and never give up.

Elder Brandon Bean

Sunday, August 11, 2013

week #22 Monday, Aug. 5, 2013

I have been on a scuba diving trip, just got back at 2:00 in the morning, so I apologize that it has taken me so long to get this last weeks letter posted.  Sorry, Debbie (Brandon's Mom)

Hey everyone,

Sorry I am emailing so late, it was crazy today w/ move call and all. So first off I'll just tell everyone about the week and I'll talk about move call last. So last week we partied w/ the members. We went to a "Chidaobao (chirdaobao)" which is basically an all you can eat place, w/ steak. All of the members we work w/ came. They invited our investigators, the Recent converts, and everyone. IT WAS AWESOME!!! There was probably 20 people there, so the Chidaobao was going crazy. Basically I got a 24 oz steak, and all you can eat buffet for like 10 bucks. Woot woot. 

So Elder Erekson got the call Monday night that he is training. So he had to go and pick up Elder Lazenby on Friday, it is so nice not being the newest kid on the block. So normally the companion of the soon to be trainer will get moved in advance so that there isn't a complication w/ having an extra missionary in the training companionship. But Elder Sumsion moved to our companionship because he wanted to be around for the baptism. It was super awesome, we worked super hard, got a lot done. (I think I work really effectively in a 3 man). So ya... So Elder Erekson came back had his new companion Elder Lazenby. His Chinese is super good, he's from Boston, but he hasn't talked too much so we'll see.

So normally we get the move call (or at least the call telling us where are going and stuff) on Saturday, but we were sitting there waiting Saturday Night and nothing. We called like 15 minutes before 10:30 and the zone leaders said they still hadn't gotten it...The next morning we get a call at 6:37ish and that was when we found out Elder Jensen is going to Dakeng, I was staying and my companions name was Elder Casperson. So ya. Then we had church, visited a lot of members, and investigators and stuff. Today I dropped Elder Sumsion and Elder Jensen off at the train station in Gaoxiong, hung out w/ my new zone leader (They switched up all the zones) went to the dream mall (biggest mall in the world) hung out there until my companion got to Gaoxiong. A member drove us, so we didn't have to take the train. (A/c is always nice) Then We got back, I've had very little time to get to know him really, but he already seems super cool. He's super funny, I'm his first junior companion, and he's a District Leader for his first time. He came on island back in septemberish so he's about 6 or 7 move call's ahead of me, he's from Draper, Utah went to Jordan High school. Super cool guy. Still getting to know him and stuff.

Well that's everything for this week, I love you all. Happy Birthday to Mckay, and Courtney, hope you guys have fun. Here it's Fathers day on Thursday b/c you say it ba ba which if you switch the tones its dad. so Happy Tawainese fathers day. I love you all, I love serving, I know the Lord is preparing people. I know I'm doing his work I love it here. 

Love you all,
Elder Brandon Bean