Monday, April 13, 2015

Conference & great happenings in Miri !

What a great opportunity we had to gather as a body of Saints and listen to our Prophet & Apostles! I felt the Spirit so strong & was enlightened so much by the Spirit from the messages! I wish we could do that every day as there is so much we can learn from this gospel & all of the mysteries of God. we are so fortunate to be in the world helping others to come unto repentance. From conference my faith in the principle of family has grown! It was made apparent to me how much the family matters when it come to living in pure joy. The quality & level of happiness in a family is a major indicator of how great the need is for the gospel. I feel so grateful for the perspective I have now. Listening to all the messages in conference about family also brings to mind the dangers that family  and the idea of family is under right now.  
When Elder Cook stated that the "Church has never been stronger" I thought of our members that we are working with and was grateful for the opportunity it is to work with them in this great work of the Lord. 

I watched Conference in English this time, will probably download it in Chinese
so we can listen to it again later.
Miracle this week is the amount of people we have on date for baptism this week. We taught one of our investigators at a members house with his friend there and we shared with him the Restoration that he heard once before, but this time we showed him the movie of the restoration. After watching it we discussed his previously shared desires to be baptized and we asked him, "Are your desires to be baptized still the same?" He replied, "Um yeah. There are still there, but the only question I have is when am I getting baptized. You know?" We were both so happy at his response and we helped him get on date for May 9th! What a great lesson that was. 

To continue the miracles we met with two young men who had met the missionaries once before a long time ago but haven't seen or talked to them in a while. We met with them in a member's home and we also shared with them the message of the Restoration. It was a powerful message in which we talked about the Book of Mormon, baptism, the Restoration of the true church, etc. At the end of the lesson they turned to me and said, "Hey, if we are going to be baptized it's going to be in your church. When can we get baptized?" We also put them on date for next month. What a great month it will be for our branch next month. So excited! 
Check out those British Flags! 
Pictures for this week was bowling, the circus was in town and it's from Britain so I'm just using this as a shout out to my brother who will be going to that great country to serve the Lord!  It's great! 
We had our cook make us patayas and he made it with a lot of love! 

I got a very good looking shirt from the great Sitiawan members! Thanks my friends in SITIAWAN! 

General Conference was amazing and I learned so much about the family. The family is the best!!! 

I love my family! 

Love Elder Hanks

Last weeks Easter email: 
This is a glorious day! It's Easter today and this day we received the great news that Thailand is getting a temple! We missionaries along with our Malaysian members,  and pretty much all of South East Asian members,  are rejoicing in the news of the Bangkok, Thailand temple announcement. The first I heard of the Thailand temple was this morning from a text from our senior couple sister and the joy I had from such an announcement is indescribable-  It's about time! 

Some fun things that happened this week was it was Good Friday. I never really understood Good Friday was celebrated by really anybody, but when Good Friday came around turns out it is a public holiday and everyone we talked to that day asked us what we were doing to celebrate. I constantly looked at my companion with a look of, "What's the big deal about Good Friday? Don't they know Christ still lives? That He is risen!?" 
We even had someone ask us, "Don't you Christians don't eat meat on Good Friday?" That one surprised me a little bit. 

In other news we felt a great measure of the Spirit of Elijiah in our work as we had a senior couple visit from Kuching. They are family history missionaries and so they came to do some family history with us. In preparation for their coming we went to a Chinese cemetery(pictures are attached)where they have these little slabs for all those who were cremated. The tomb stones for those not cremated are just incredible and just beautiful. Well, we tried to talk to the grounds keeper about allowing us to do some preservation work of the cemetery's records because they have almost none!!!! He was a little uncooperative and wouldn't really help us, So we called the boss over the whole cemetery, and she came over. We talked to her and you could tell the Spirit touched her heart. We then were so happy when we heard the news that we could begin to work in preserving information for now and hopefully,eventually take the names of those buried in the cemetery to the temple. We'll see -

Perhaps the Thailand temple ;). There are thousands of people in this cemetery and so what a joy it is to help them get even closer to their ordinances being done.

Easter weekend was such a wonderful time to be serving the Lord. Yeah, we have not yet watched General Conference(this weekend!) but the Spirit and reality of the Savior's resurrection was felt. We missionaries hosted an Easter Devotional Saturday night where we prepared scriptures, Bible videos, testimonies, musical numbers, and showed the new church video, "Because He Lives." A great spirit was felt. The missionaries sang a number called, "Because He Lives" in the devotional and also in all three branches sacrament meeting and it was a great way to bring the Spirit to our beloved members on this Easter week.

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