Monday, July 26, 2010

The Pei Way

WELL...

Lots of changes, kind of. Interesting things happen when move calls come. But let me start somewhere else...
The week was an ok week. Not a lot of success, but not a lot of failure either. Just a normal week. No baptisms, but I came to find out that baptizing three is a good move call number. I don't really care about numbers (or I'm not supposed to, I'm working on that... :P) but Elder Krantz told me that it was one of his better move calls. Elder Krantz is amazing. He went Senior and District Leader last move call, and then Trainer with me, and now he is a Zone Leader in Gaoxiong East. He left this morning. We went to the mission office and there I waited for my new companion.
Elder Pei is fantastic!! He is a native from Taipei, and I'm scared to death.
WHAT? What are they doing giving me a local for a companion? I'm on Move Call #2! I can't speak Chinese that well! Ugh. It hasn't been bad so far, but I've been worried. He is supposed to be a great worker and a funny guy. A lot of Elders tell me that he really is probably the best local companion you could have. They all love him, so I'm sure I will too, if I can speak to him. The Gift of Tongues is 100% needed right now. EVERYTHING is now going to be in Chinese. This is one of those times when you say, "Careful what you wish for..." When in the MTC I said I wanted to be immersed in the language, and not speak one word of English. Well, here I am. Companionship study, singing, praying, district training meetings, at night, in the morning... all in Chinese. My teachers said it was uncertain of even getting a local for a companion, and if you did it wouldn't be until later in your mission. I've only been here for 7 weeks! Geez...
But, there's temptation to just give up and go on with the work without pushing forward with my Chinese, but I won't do it. I have the best opportunity now, and I am going to use it! I'm scared to death, but it makes me think about Dad's mission, and makes me wonder if he ever had a native for a companion. I don't remember any stories, and if Dad did have one, or two, I would love to hear how he went about being their companion.
Oh boy.
My planner is now in 100% characters, and I barely see any English anymore, except for right now. :D 'Cause I'm typing in English. But only because my family can't understand Chinese. I'm dark enough now to be darker than most Taiwanese people, so you'd think I had Chinese background as well. ;)
Anyway, last week was fun. And a little awkward. We helped Luo Jun Xiong and Chen Wei Han get the priesthood yesterday, and they're just great! They were both sad to see Elder Krantz move though... Me, too. I only had him for one move call. :( Saturday we had an interesting activity that we attended with one of our investigators and our recent converts. It was at our church. A Ma Jie Mei (Sister Ma) is going to America this Thursday to get married to a returned missionary from Taizhong. He's been back for almost a year now, and she wants to go. A little sketchy of a situation, and totally awkward. President Hoer was his Mission President, and President Hoer says that we should not marry anyone we meet on our mission. President Hoer says "marry the girl next door". Anyway, funny situation.
Farmer Zhang. Crazy man, but SOOO funny. I love him! He loves coming to church! He believes every word we say, until we talk about not drinking beer or tea, and he gets this smirk on his face, freaks out, and says he can't believe in this church if they don't drink beer or tea, 'cause they're "drinks from God", and they "open human power mind strength". And in his prayers he always prays for me to meet a girl when I get home and get married quick. That's one prayer I will pray won't get answered. He says "please bless Kong Zhanglao to meet a 'ka ka de nusheng' and marry fast" Don't ask what he means, cause I still don't know. Even my recent converts don't know. :P
Gotta love Taiwan people.
So good to hear your having curry! I just had it on Saturday. And the day before that, and before that, and before that, and before that, and before that, along with 13 Costco muffins in the last week (yes I gained 5 pounds), and more curry everyday. It's not the same, and Dad's and Mom's is MUCH better. I'm not just saying that. It's not super good here, unless a native Japanese person makes it, or it's not the "fast food" type. And I don't want to get sick of it, so I actually try not to eat it that much. I fail a lot, but I'm still trying.
It's good to hear Eric's emails, and understand EXACTLY how he's feeling. And comparing his experience to mine, and to what Haitian-Creole Elders do different than the Mandarin Elders...Anyway. He sounds SO much better though. Our rules seemed a lot stricter though... hmph. Whatev. ;)
And Kendall! I just barely got his letter, Mexico City! Wow. He hates Spanish. But at least he has a background. So happy for him! Super hot there, hope he does all right. He might be in the MTC for 12 weeks instead of 9, 'cause their visas take forever to Mexico missions.
Well, not much else, except that I have a big week ahead of me, trying to figure out how to be with Elder Pei and work out teaching and working as a companionship. We set our baptismal goal tomorrow, and hope to rock out my second move call!! He is on is 13th, so He might be here for the rest of his mission. Not certain, but likely. I won't. I might be here for one or two more, but it's still uncertain. We'll see. Still fine being junior comp the rest of my mission :P
Love you all!! Trying to write letters again today... we'll see how that goes. :D

-Elder Carter
-Keep it real, keep it strong, live right, and you'll live long!!!

ps- Police just came in to the internet cafe to find a junior high school student who is sluffing class... it's a big deal here. Everyone has to go to school. It's the law. I think it's kinda funny, but it's a good thing :P

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Independence Day Celebration!

Elders Carter and Krantz celebrating American Independence Day in Taiwan.

Video! Elder Carter gives apartment tour

Here is a fun little video Elder Carter sent recently. He gives us a little tour of his first apartment in Taichung Taiwan. Enjoy!

Monday, July 19, 2010

President Uchtdorf Visits





Hallo!!!
Couple things...
First: Sorry this is a little later. We went on a 25 mile bike ride through Taiping mountains this morning, and it was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. So that's why the email is late. I know you've got that little thought that is saying, "It's late, we didn't get any mail last week, is he all right? Maybe we should call the President... " etc. Mom. Don't. :D It got unbelievably busy last week. I wrote a letter to you all, but still haven't sent it 'cause we haven't had time to send it. So, hopefully tomorrow morning. And you'll have it soon. So sorry!! But you'll have a bunch of cool pics!
Luo Jun Xiong, and Chen Wei Han both got baptized this last Saturday. Unbelievable. I helped with Chen Dixiong's (Brother Chen) baptism, and Elder Krantz did the same for Brother Luo. Both amazing souls. Both gonna be stake presidents and general authorities someday, and will be needed when China opens.
Speaking of China opening... It's gonna be soon. I can just feel it. I don't quite know what kind of "soon" I mean, but it can't be much longer.
Any questions? :D jk, I know you always have a million. Well, this last week was tough, but flew by. We had a lot of work to do. We taught 30 plus lessons, and Saturday was a great day. Saturday had President Uchtdorf visiting in the morning, and then two baptisms that night. Just a great day. Especially since I can finally start understanding most everyone now, and get through almost any conversation with at least basic understanding. :D President Uchtdorf was absolutely amazing. He and his wife visited with the Area Authority. Sister Uchtdorf is such a girl! Her English is amazing, but she's like a little girly girl, and loves her husband. President Uchtdorf loves her, too. He loves missionaries, and his wife. It's obvious, 'cause everytime I've heard him speak besides General Conference, and even in General Conference he mentions his wife's conversion to the Gospel, and how grateful he is for the two missionaries who helped her find the truth. The Spirit was so strong!!!
President Bishop is sliding into his position with greater ease every day. He always comments on how they're still "trying to get around". But he does just fine. (This is Elder Carter’s new mission president that just came in the beginning of July.)
Elder Krantz is a great companion, and has taught me a lot about missionary work. As my first transfer comes to a close, I start to feel like I've got a handle on things, but then I know that's gonna change. Homesick is gone, but homesick for my first area sets in when I think about the possibility of leaving it. I've made super great friends here, and I don't know how in so quick a time, but Wang Yi Hua (Orlando), that first baptism that happened the day after I was with Elder Krantz, wants to come home with me when I leave Taiwan. He said he would if he had money to do so then :P I told him, I don't know. :P Obviously a little hard to think about that right now. But I am going to go through the temple with him when he goes the first time, and hopefully he'll still be in touch by then.
(Move calls are when the elders get transferred. As of right now they happen every 6 weeks. We should know next week if Elder Carter will be spending another 6 weeks with Elder Krantz.) It's funny to see and hear the companionship predictions coming to the end of the move call. And predictions about where everyone will go. They've got me moving to Zone Leader or Trainer on my second move call. Yeah right. I'm gonna be junior my entire mission, and I am one hundred percent ok with that. :) That sounds nice.
My goals are being accomplished so far, and it's been fun reevaluating the ones I don't quite accomplish :P. But I've lost 20 pounds, and my eating schedule is pretty well set. My running schedule, so far, is great. My mile time is now at a 6:34 which is a 37 second drop from the first part of the move call. I've passed off lessons 1 through 3 in phase 1, and I have 3 more pass offs. Lesson 4, Lesson 5, and my final. :D I feel like I'm at college all over again!
Phases: Phase 1 consists of Lessons 1 through 5 in chapter three of Preach My Gospel which each consist of vocabulary, grammar, teaching phrases, promised blessings, scriptures, definitions, teaching skills, and doctrine. For each Lesson. I pass off each lesson then, at lesson three, do a lessons 1 through 3 pass off with the Zone Leaders. Already finished that one. Now, for the rest of the phase.
Phase two is all about vocab. 2000 plus words. Then phase 3 is Book of Mormon characters, and after that is up to you.
I wish I could introduce you to every one of my recent converts, and baptisms. Remember my first baptism? Zhang Shu Wei... well he hasn't been coming back to church. He says it's school, but I don't believe him all the way... he was supposed to get the priesthood two Sundays ago!!! And he didn't come yesterday... :( He'll be fine... but it's Taiwan LDS history that says, if a recent baptism doesn't get the priesthood FAST, then they usually go inactive, JUST AS FAST. And Luo Jun Xiong is being prayed for, because he's only stopped smoking for a week, and after baptism it's easy to slip back into old habits... But he knows it's true.
So, pictures. Chen Wei Han, is the chubby teenager, and Luo Jun Xiong is the dark, older man. He makes GREAT bread for us, and Wei Han, makes GREAT biandang. What's with the cooks as our converts? You'd think missionaries ate a lot or something... ;) Elder Krantz, Elder Boshard (district leader), Elder Buenning, and me in Taiping, at the bat cave. And me along the way through Taiping mountains. Love it! Got plenty more pics comin'...
As you can tell, I'm lovin' it here. I have 15 move calls left and it feels like forever. But I don't want to go anywhere but where I am. I could literally do this the rest of my life til I'm 21 or so, that's how much I love it! :D But really, I love it! The people are SO funny, and I can't take time to tell you everything about them, 'cause I figure that when I talk to you through the phone, or in person is the best way to hear about what they're like and who these people are. Lots of stuff has happened this move call, obvously, and I can't wait to keep moving forward. Looking back on my progress, is sometimes hard, but when I'm in a good mood, I can see my progress. Then when I look forward, I get excited about just how much more I can do to progress here on my mission, then on into my life. I still feel like nothing has changed in my progress a lot of the time, but I guess you can't see progress as easily when you live with you. You'll have to tell me what's different when I call you or when I come home. Whatev. No worries. It's just nice to accomplish goals and move forward. The fact that I'm accomplishing some of my goals, and not others makes me feel like I set them just right, right now. Finding a way to stretch myself, and the places where I, specifically, need to improve. It's nice to narrow down the lens on what EXACTLY I need to work on and improve on, then how to do it step by step.
 Well, that's all I guess. I send my letters soon. So sorry!!! Wearing shorts to Taiping was weird... I haven't worn shorts on a bike for ages... and I have a massive tan line problem. But I've given in to the fact that I'm gonna have the same tanline for the rest of my life... So.... just get used to it. Love you all!!!
-Elder Carter

ps- President Uchtdorf gave us a promise. He promised us that any concerns, worries, troubles, or trials that we have at home WILL come to a satisfactory conclusion and solution. He talked about forgetting past sins, and that Satan will definitely come in and bring up your past to make you think that you're not worthy. But the reason WE remember them is so that we can use them to not fall into the same trap we did when we did them in the first place. God forgot about them. So forget the pain, remember the lesson, and move on. Plus, his promise to us, about any trials at home coming to a solution, well that means that everything that I'm worried about here, or think about when I think about home will be FINE. I don't really worry, but I do think about it. Just know that President Uchtdorf PROMISED you that it would be all good. I love you!!! Keep smiling. Keep it real, keep it strong, live right and you'll live long! Remind me to tell you about President Uchtdorf's "4th floor, last door" story. That quote will be on my walls someday... Loves-

Monday, July 12, 2010

I don't want to eat Doritos




We asked Elder Carter to tell us what we can send him in packages. We wanted to know if there is anything he can’t get in Taiwan, and this is his response…

I can get whatever I want here, really. Just gotta go to the right place. But I don't want to eat doritos. I just got on a diet and plan that actually is working, and I intend to keep it that way. I did buy toblerones at one point and some oreos, but any food comes out of money from the Mission office. And I leave a little bit every month, so by the end of my mission I should have a bunch saved up and have no problem.
Don't need new anything yet, and it's MUCH cheaper here to buy, so I'll just tell you if I need more money for new clothes, and you put it in. (I won't need more money) Really. I just bought new speakers. In America, it would've been like 20 plus dollars to buy any kind almost. Here? 6. 6 American dollars. For pretty nice speakers at a little roadside shop. They're great! Clothes are even cheaper. So I'll let you know. Everything is holding up just fine.
All four of my black pants from Missionary Mall got that hole right in the bum, just like the suit pants. So, I'm slowly fixing them. The shirts are staying white, and, yes, i'm gonna need to do something else for the collars- blech. Socks are holding up great. Some have holes in them, but only on the leg part, because of my bike pedals catching them in awkward situations. My fault. But the socks are great. The shoes are holding up great, and I only wear my suit coat on Sundays for 3 hours, and Baptisms. So it just stays at the church, out of the humidity.
Moving on.
Zone Leader Exchanges not last week, but the week before, that I forgot to write about. So good!! I went with Elder Prier (on his last move call) and stayed over in the apartment that I stayed in when I got here. I learned so much. I added 18 people in 3 hours that night and the next day did another 10. I learned a lot better how to talk to people and how to help them want to talk to me. It's almost easy to add now. Except that a couple days this week I only got like one or two... ;)
But, on exchanges, the next day in early, super rainy afternoon, I was sitting with Elder Prier in the middle of the city on abandoned planks of wood in an alley in the back of nowhere. The rain was pooring down on top of us, and it was warm. We talked about how the exchange went and what I could improve on. Also on what I thought I was good at. Elder Prier gave me tips, helped me understand, and committed me to do things to help me improve. It was super spiritual, and a wonderful experience. One of the best so far. Then the baptism, of course.
We met a man at a park a while ago. We call it the Gazebo. Cause that's pretty much all that's in the park. He was sitting there contemplating. His family is going through a rough time, and he was trying to think about what he could do to help them out. Smoking a cigarette under the neon lights in a quiet park in the middle of the city, he was remembering when he met the missionaries. A quick meeting on the side of the street. But he remembered that he wanted to go back. He was thinking that maybe going to their church might give his family something to improve with. But he didn't know where the church was. He turned around, and Elder Krantz and I were standing there with our goofy smiles, sweaty hair, soaking clothes with our hands held out to shake his. We had a good 20 minutes with that man in that gazebo (or pagota-whatever) and taught him about Joseph Smith. He stood us up on our lesson the next day, but he knows where the church is now, and it's up to him from now on. God gave him what he was asking for, and I can only hope that he acts on that answer.
That next day, at night, on our way back to the apartment, we stopped in a Family Mart on the corner of our apartment complex. A man was sitting outside. When we started talking to him, we found out that, he, too, had seen missionaries before and had that streetside 2 minute contact experience. He knew about us. Well, he had just gotten out of jail that day. Literally, he was still inside the gates with his jail clothes on when we woke up that day. And he meets the missionaries that night? Now get this, he has to go back in three months to finish up 8 years. He tried to kill a man, and he seriously feels bad about it.
He was looking for a way to help his family relationships get better, remembering the missionaries, and getting ready to get real busy to earn money in that three months for his family. We taught him the first lesson, and planned on meeting him again, but he's too busy. God has to work miracles for that man. He's accepted the Gospel so far, and he accepted us. God is with us, the Spirit works through us, and Christ walks before us. It's as literal as the computer sitting in front of me. We just sometimes forget that we have a God with us all the time, and take it for granted.
But when you walk through the slums of any city, you start to realize just what a lot of people live like. But, at least in Taiwan, the slums of New York are the niceties of Taizhong. Everyone lives in muck. Open sewage, and filthy rain. We've forgotten what we've gained. We've forgotten that the world isn't quite to the same level... but that's just standard of living! Who cares about open sewage, and dirty rain, and no clean clothes? Only those who don't have the Gospel, or those who have it, and take it for granted. I would live here, if it meant I could have the Gospel, and the fulness of truth. I would live anywhere. Of course, you want more, you want a clean home, and a clean bed, but these people don't have that. AND they don't have the Gospel. We really have forgotten what we have.
Huang Dixiong, our ward mission leader and Elder Krantz and I were talking about traveling, and we saw a picture of the Salt Lake City Temple in the Liahona. He asked us where that was, and if we had been there. I told him I had been there a TON. All the time. He looked at me with a little smile, a hint of desire behind his eyes, and said, "bu gongping". It means- not fair. He laughed a little and we moved on. But I'll never forget the look in his eyes, and how badly he wished he could go. And here I am, bragging about how often I've been there. I felt horrible.
These people have a different level of happy. They can have peaceful, humble lives and live great! I wish I could sometimes. But, when they have the Gospel as part of it, everything gets better, and they see it in a much more literal way. The nicest places I've been have been owned by members, besides restaurants. There is a special light behind their eyes, that I love to see on Sunday, and is so different than the average punk you find at the next stoplight. People think they're happy. Or they don't. But they don't understand where true happiness comes from. And if they would just take an hour out of their week to meet with us, they'd find it. The source of truth itself. The beginning of true happiness.
That's my mission here. To help people find that. But it does NOT happen without the Spirit.
When I hear that people at home are struggling, or finding it hard to keep going, my heart cries a little, cause all I can do is send a few words. I can only hope that the Spirit accompanies my words and carries them into hearts at home.

(Elder Carter’s friend, Eric Seamons, is now Elder Seamons and is in the MTC. He was having some trouble adjusting to the MTC transition and we let KJ know. We asked him to write to Eric and a lot of the rest of this email is meant for him, but neat to share with the rest of you.)

My buddy Eric. Oh man, how I wish I could sit down with him and talk like we used to. We both seemed to always find strength from each other when we would hang out, and upon arrival home, I would never forget our conversations. I've been through it. I've been through the MTC. I KNOW how hard it is. At least for me. And so do so many other people. So you bet I will write him soon. And maybe, just maybe, it'll feel like old times.
But isn't that what Christ did? He actually knows every single one of our pains, trials, and challenges. 'Cause, in some universally miraculous way, he suffered the same pain. Take joy in the Atonement, my friend, and KNOW that someone out there knows how you feel. In the darkest moments, in the scariest places, in the midst of the devil's angels, the light can still penetrate. And even you can be a source of that light. Because the Light of Christ is in you. You have His Spirit with you. Let it shine. I share about the Atonement every day on my mission and try to help people understand what it does for everyone, and I don't use it or understand it myself.
When you feel like you can't move forward. When you feel like you can't see. When you feel like there's nothing left tomorrow, you've spent it all today, when you feel like you're at the bottom of the deepest pit ever dug. Take a second, and stop looking down at the dirt tryin to get out that way. Look up. Look around. You can look up and see the light still. No matter how far you are. And if you can't? Then reach your hands out and start climbing. I promise, before you even get off the floor of this hole, strong, scarred hands will wrap around you and help you up. Then you'll feel them pull you close and tight. And when you look up, through your tears, with new motivation to get out of that hole, you're looking into the Face of Christ. He's smiling, and by the time you're done crying, and recomposing yourself, He lifts you up again and when you look around, you find you're already home.
Take joy in the Savior. Help Him help you. Don't forget that He's there. Friends, family, leaders... they can all give you advice to help you through those times, but they didn't serve your mission. The Million missionaries that have successfully served a mission before you, they didn't serve your mission either. You are serving your mission. And Christ has, too. So, pretty sure He knows what to do to move forward, get off the floor, and get out of the pit. Exactly what to do for you. It's different for the next person. Maybe the next person has to climb aways up the walls of the pit before He helps them up, who knows? But you know how to find out? Pray. Read. Go to church, and IMMERSE YOURSELF IN THE WORK.
Don't give yourself time to think. It's not your time anyway. God loves you, you're on His errand, so inevitably, you are entitled to His blessings, and His help. This goes for everyone, for any trial. I have no idea how hard it is to quit smoking. But I've had addictions of my own, and I know how hard it was to quit those. I don't know what it's like to have an unhappy family, but I can teach you how to make it better. Because, if you take the steps toward Christ, if you go through the door we've opened for you, He'll take you the rest of the way. He knows how to fix it. He knows how to make it better. He knows how to make your life the best life you ever thought you could live.
He loves you.
This goes for everyone, including me.
I love you. All of you.
Be happy!! Soak it in! You have the Gospel!! Give it away!!!
The blessings that come are beyond what anyone ever told you they would be. I promise. I know, that as you get on your feet, and at least try to start climbing, God will be there to help. Why would He leave His children in the dark? Would you? I'll let you answer that question.
It's true. I know it. I've felt it. I've seen it. I love all of ya!
-Elder Carter

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Baptism!


Well Hi!!
Everything's great here. Super cool! Well, not really super "cool", but you know what I mean. I'm realizing a little bit what I'm doing here. I have a couple things I want to show people when I get home. A movie called "Healing Waters" is absolutely amazing. The Joseph Smith Movie (the most recent one) is my absolute favorite along with "The Testaments" lol, soooo cheesy... :D So I'll go through all of the things that helped me keep growing when I get home. It should be fun!
Singing at Zone Conference
Two Tuesdays ago, I was asked to perform in Zone Conference. I sang Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing for 5 zones worth of missionaries and for President Hoer and wife. The last time I got to see him!!! He leaves Wed or Thurs!!! :( But Pres Bishop gets here tomorrow. So it'll be exciting to meet him.
There was a farewell party last Sunday-not yesterday, last Sunday (June 20), for a member going to serve in the Chinese Army. It's a requirement to go for a year. Every young man has to. So that's why missions are hard to serve for a Taiwanese Elder. But this young man was leaving, and the wards threw a farewell party. Elder Krantz and I were invited. Our most recent Baptism, Zhang Shu Wei, was there, along with Huang Dixiong. It was fun. Got to eat curry, and some weird dessert thing. But they asked me to sing again, and I sang the "We Have Been Born" song. Solo. Along with As I Have Loved You. Buy my rendition does not match up with the Japanese woman who sang it (in Japanese) right before me. So cool! That's another point where it was testified to me that the church is true. An Asian woman, from Japan, singing As I Have Loved You, in Japanese...Considering that's where Dad went, I was stoked to hear it, and the Spirit was SO there. Then I sang and ruined the atmosphere...:P But they said I was good. It felt good to use my talents out here on my mission. In my second year, I'm allowed to start playing musical instruments on Preparation Day. So we'll see what happens.
Well, It's been a good week. President Hoer leaves soon, but I get the feeling that not a lot is going to change. I have never set so many goals in my life, and actually figure out how to accomplish them. I can't live without a planner now. And I have set high goals, for my mission, and I will tell you some as I accomplish them I think. There's too many to list.
But here's a few.
Read the BoM every six weeks. Get to 180 pounds. Run a 5:30 mile. Run a 2:07 800m (Lindsey! Help! I don't know how to do that. Or how to train right to get there by the end of my mission. I only have three days a week to run. And a half hour to do it. A track to run on, but not certain. What do I do? Especially in this humid weather? I just ran a 6:51 mile on an ingrown toenail and pushing my lungs out of my eyeballs... so hard! How do I improve? That is 20 seconds better than the first time I timed my mile, though...), Pass off Phase 1 this move call, Phase 2 in two more move calls, and Phase 3 in another 2 move calls. Then review. Have all the mission materials studied through by the year mark. Then start studying dictionaries, other words, and characters. Then the last 6 months of my mission start writing all of them, and read the BoM in characters twice. My Personal Study is planned out to the minute. No joke. I have times of the day where I don't allow myself to eat. I, obviously, have things I want to buy, but those will all come later. I have a lot of continue on after my mission goals already. But I've never had so many written down! Four pages! Four categories with 8 or 9 subcategories in each! I'm growing so fast!
I still feel like my language is poop. Like I couldn't understand a thing yesterday. Or speak for that matter. But I've passed off lessons one and two lately, and working on three this week, four next week, and five after that. Hopefully done by the end of the move call. Ah! But it feels good to have the goals, because when you achieve goals you didn't think you could, it's amazing! Then you reevaluate if you can't make it, and don't beat yourself up over it. I'm doing surprisingly well at that. So far.
Contacting. (We asked Elder Carter to tell us more about contacting people in the middle of the street.)They don't really get mad. They're all just impatient usually. We come up to a red light and immediately pull up to any man around and say things like, "have you heard of this church?" "Have you been before?" "Did you like it?" "What do you believe?" "We're very similar" "Why do you think there are so many churches today?" "Too many churches, right?" "So which one is true?" "I know, right now, that you don't believe our church, and every church will always say 'our church is the true church!' right? So why should you come to ours?" "Because our church has been restored. It was restored in 1820...." Stuff like that. Then we get them to meet with us, or come to church, and then we give the baptismal commitment. "I know, right now, you don't know if our church is true, right? Well, on this date, we have a baptismal service. At that time, if you know this church is true and that it will help your family and your life be better, will you receive baptism?" They usually say yes, because, of course, if you knew any church was true and knew that it would help you, you would want to join, right? But this is a little different, because our church will help you have an "eternal" family, and eternal blessings. Everyone says yes, when we say that. "This is a goal. It's ok, if you don't believe, right now. No one does when they first hear. I was baptized when I was eight. Do you think I knew what I was doing? Not really. But I did it anyway, and NOW I understand and believe in my church. Then? I didn't have a lot of knowledge or care. But I was able to prepare and receive baptism.... Anyway. That's what we do on the streets.
We teach 30 lessons a week. We add 60 investigators a week. 40 plus have a baptismal date. 5 or so come through to the next week as still progressing. And so on, until we get a baptism.
More about Pres Bishop, Elder Krantz, and my area (including some of the Less Actives and Recent Converts) next email. Sorry! Never have any time... :( And remind me to tell you about Zone Leader Exchanges. So good. :D Oh, and a couple stories of people we met on the street in a park and by the family mart.
Love you!!!
-Elder Carter

Thursday, July 1, 2010

New Pics from Taiwan!

See updated mission pictures on Flickr.

First pics from Taiwan and first area in Taichung City.

Click on this link or cut and paste this URL below:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevin_g_carter/sets/72157624274854903/