Return the favor

Monday, October 28, 2013

week #34 Monday, Oct. 28, 2013

Hey everyone,

Sorry so late, it's been crazy today, I got a new companion. I stayed here in the city, but Elder G left for Zhanghua. We were super sad he was leaving, he was really sad. He got a really cool gift from our investigator, it was a drawing of Elder G. It looks super cool. Maybe he'll send out a picture. 

Well this past week was pretty fun. We started off w/ playing basketball w/ all the Elders in DongQu. Super fun, then we went and hung out w/ the Zone Leaders. Then this week we've noticed we are really struggling w/ a few of our investigators so we are going to be spending a lot of time finding. 

Went on exchanges w/ Elder Jensen this week, which was super fun. It was weird going on exchanges w/ my trainer, I didn't realize how much I've grown/changed since I was trained. But it was awesome, I was understanding everything he said, I was able to teach well. It was super fun (except for the fact we got stood up a lot). 

Oh ya, my companion's name is Elder Bao, he is a native. I don't know him too well yet, just barely picked him up and we came and did e-mails, more to come next week. Well I guess this is everything. I love you all, thanks for the updates. I'm super grateful for the chance I have to serve in this area another move call. See ya next week.

Elder Bean

Monday, October 21, 2013

week #33 Monday, Oct. 21, 2013

Hey Everyone,

It's been a great week filled with awesome experiences. So first off, I had an exchange w/ Elder Chia. He was a zone leader beforehand, so there is a lot to learn from him. We had a blast. Then this week Elder G and I used teamwork to teach the little kids and it worked out fine, not nearly as much chaos. We had fun doing that, and this week we have a Halloween party, so that will be fun. 

On Friday, we had a special training meeting on stress. I think it was mandated by the area, they gave us a new book called "adjusting to missionary stress".  It was definitely a different training, but overall it was fun, especially because I got to see the rest of my MTC District. It was a nice, small reunion. Oh and they gave us a present there, they gave us reflector vests to wear as we are riding in the nights. I will have pictures to send you all next week for sure. I didn't think of taking a picture of us wearing it. 

Oh, so on Wednesday, we got a call from the Stake Presidency. Elder G was asked to give a talk in the Adult session of Stake Conference, along with the Patriarch, President and Sister Blickenstaff, The Stake President and some other members of the stake. He was super focused on it this past week, studying writing, and then on Friday, we got a call from the High Council Member in our ward who is over the English Branch. He asked if I could translate the talk at the Conference. So, we both participated in Stake Conference this last week. And also something that should be said to Sister G, His talk was really, good. he related Lehi and the Tree of Life to a sure fire way to help the work progress. He taught the members, that if we repent, gain a testimony of Christ, look for opportunities to share, and we invite, we will be able to see lots of success. His testimony was very moving at the end. (I'm sure he won't include all these details in his description of this experience).
Then we had stake conference the next day, and we were fortunate to watch a clip from Elder Holland, Elder Hales, Sister Stephenson of the Primary Presidency, and Elder Evans the head of the Mission Board. And it was an amazing presentation, I'm sure the stake got a lot out of it and I can't wait to see the results of it. 

So one thing we've been doing this week is teaching the first lesson to investigator's who weren't really progressing. It was an invite from the zone leaders, to help remind our investigator's that this church has more to it than just a list of commandments, and that there is a reason that they continued meeting with us. I feel like we've seen a lot of success from that. It's interesting how much power the first vision has and how it can inspire anyone, less active, active member, investigator, missionary, etc. I feel like it really does have the power to inspire to teach and to help us remember why we love this church. It's been great. 

Well that's everything for this week. Sorry I didn't have a recording, I was pretty busy this week. I hope you're all doing well. Miss you all. I know that Joseph Smith in reality did have the first vision, he saw God the Father, Jesus Christ, in the Sacred Grove in Palmyra, New York. I know that this was the beginning to the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and has lead to the amazing growth of Jesus Christ's only True church on the earth. 

Love you all,

Elder Brandon Bean

Monday, October 14, 2013

week #32 Monday, Oct. 14, 2013

Hey everyone,

So this week has been pretty great. We have had a lot of great experiences. On Monday we didn't do anything too special, just went to the church and played around w/ our instruments of choice. Elder G decided to change his guitar string which turned out to be more disastrous then he thought. Basically he didn't use his guitar until Saturday because he was trying to fix the string all week. 

Wednesday was super busy. And when I say that, I mean, we had no lessons, so we were on the streets all day just straight up contacting. It was crazy all the people that we went and talked to. I think it will bring a lot of new investigator's for the future. Then Thursday we had an exercising activity. It was super fun. The stake president invited all of us missionaries to attend, so we were there, competed, had a blast. Sister Blickenstaff took a ton of pictures, I'm the one wearing an orange Ragnar shirt. Don't worry I drank lots of water, didn't get dehydrated at all. 

Conference was amazing. I was super ready for it. I loved all the talks but some of my favorites included Elder Dube on looking forward. Sister Oscarson's about trying doctrine before you know it's from God. Elder Ballard's on Missionary Work. Elder Oaks on putting God first. Elder Nelson on our divine nature. Elder Christofferson about the moral strength of  women. President Monson's Sunday Morning Address, President Eyring's talks (both were amazing) President Uchtdorf on lifelong service in the church, it was honestly amazing. I loved it. 

Ya I think that's everything for the week. I love you all, I love the work, love the prophet. I know that President Thomas S. Monson is called of God, he is a prophet of God. I know that his Apostles are also called of God and act in His name. Talk to you next week.

Elder Brandon Bean 

Monday, October 7, 2013

week #31 Monday, Oct. 7, 2013

Hey Everyone,

Yet another great week in Zhongming. This week we had a lot of crazy adventures. First, on Monday we went to a 吃到包aka, an all you can eat restaurant. This one was pretty special, called 石頭 which means rock head, it was a meat buffet, so all meat pretty much, so good, we definitely ate to the point of filling (what chidaobao translates to) it was so good. Then on Tuesday we had ZTM, we got some new standards of excellence, and was invited by the mission President to teach the lesson of the restoration (with every principle) at every first meeting with a new person, and to invite them to be baptized, I was super shocked, but Elder G and I were super willing to obey and we've seen a lot of blessings out of it. I am shocked how much it has changed our work. We really have seen it help so many of our investigators. 

Overall, November looks to be a month of baptisms (this month is pretty crowded w/ General Conference, Stake Conference) but it'll be great. Apparently, lately there have been a lot of meetings going on, being set up between our mission leaders and stake/ward leaders. It is starting to really reap rewards, our Ward Mission Leaders are seeing what needs to be done and what should be done in the ward, it is crazy the difference it is making. President Blickenstaff definitely has a vision of where he wants our mission to be and he is fulfilling a way for us to hit that goal. 

Let's see, we got to participate in a ward activity where we helped clean up a park. Super fun, Elder G and I have been asked to do prelude music some time in our ward, they love that they have a guitar and piano player in the ward. So that'll be super fun. Elder Erekson got called to be the new office Manager, so basically all of the Gangshan district has been up here to the north, It's super fun. We got  a calendar a couple days ago, and we are going to be having a lot of meetings coming up so I'm super excited.

Well, that's all I got for now, I've been praying a bunch for all of you, I know the church is true, I'm super excited for conference, I hope you all got a lot out of it. Talk to you all next week.


Elder Brandon Bean