Monday, 29 December 2014

29/12/14 - Happy New Year‏

Happy new year!

This transfer has gone by very quickly! We had our move calls last night and everyone in Bletchley is staying the same! The Milton Keynes' elders are changing and so are the sisters. Elder Palmer will be going to Dunstable and Elder Zhao will be training in 2 weeks after being with Elder Jenson. Sister Fenu is going to Romford and Sister Van Zyl is going to train again in Milton Keynes! Elder Judy felt like he's done with Bletchley, but he's going to be here for at least 6 months once this transfer is over. I feel good that I'm able to be here longer, because I feel we have unfinished work to do. 

My first Christmas has come and gone. Me and Elder Fisher Skyped at 9 in the morning and Elder Judy and Elder Romney Skyped at 7:00 pm. It was very nice to be able to see everyone face to face after 4 and a half months! It looks like Josiah and John have gotten bigger! Even though it's my first Christmas away from home, we were taken very good care of at the Lawson's and the De Kock's houses. We had a big Christmas dinner at the Lawsons and we played with their 4 young kids which included Lego and Nerf wars. I watched Frozen for the first time and The Lego Movie! Both are fantastic movies! Boxing day was a success too. We did some shopping before going to member's house and bought an M&S tie for £6.00 on sale! 

We had a good time at church yesterday. Even though we didn't have many investigators there, sister Fu showed up!  She's a less-active who normally works on Sunday at her Chinese supermarket and hasn't been to church for a long time. On Saturday evening I felt that I should call her, but she didn't pick up so I left a voicemail and at the end I said that I hope to see her at church. She got my message and came for sacrament! Elder Judy thought I was being cheeky, but it worked! She's very nice to us and she gave us Christmas presents plus free char siu bao and stir fry! We're grateful to have been able to witness this miracle and we plan to do some service for her in the near future. 

As a mission we have done very well and got 472 baptisms this year and our goal was set for 500. Here's an extract from President and Sister Jordan's email:

"Dear Elders and Sisters,

The miracle about which I want to write today is what you accomplished in the England London Mission in 2014. Last year we baptised 326 individuals. With still a few baptisms scheduled for today and tomorrow, we will finish this year with about 472 baptisms. With the same number of missionaries, we baptised almost 150 more people. This is a very significant achievement and one of which you can be very proud."

Have a happy new year!


Love,

Elder Chew
Skype with the family

Christmas Dinner

Marvel socks from the Lawsons!

Monday, 22 December 2014

22/12/14 - Christmas Conference!‏

Merry Christmas!

The Bletchley ward and the Milton Keynes ward had their Christmas Truce carol concert last evening and it was fantastic! Me and Elder Judy even got to meet the Mayor! On Thursday we went down to London to have our Christmas conference! The training's on developing Christ-like attributes and the Atonement were great. It's very important that our investigators understand the Atonement and how Jesus Christ is our Savior. I think I've gotten better at teaching it now. We played our white elephant game, where everybody brings their "white elephant" - which is normally a gift that doesn't cost too much and it can be ridiculous (Elder Judy made a vegetable necklace last year). Sister Jordan read out a story and every time she said "left" or "right" we would have to move our gift to the person next to us. Elder Judy ended up with an origami kit and I got some nice colour pens and erasers. The gifts we gave out were the best in my opinion. We went to B&M and got 2 gifts. Elder Judy picked the Slam Dunk game, where you play whilst on the toilet and I got the head basketball game. President Jordan held up the Slam Dunk game and showed everyone the picture - it was hilarious! 

We have a new investigator - L. We met him on Saturday night and he let us come inside his house to share a Christmas message with him. He's 73 and he's very polite and friendly. We even got him to church the next day and he enjoyed watching the First Presidency's Christmas Devotional. We're planning to meet him soon, most likely after Christmas because he's going to Derby to spend time with family. Unfortunately, N still hasn't come to church and blames it on her illness. We believe there is another concern and it could be her family...

The Milton Keynes Elders had a baptism on Saturday, who had an amazing conversion story. He used to be Muslim and was getting a very hard time from his wife in Pakistan about joining our church. He talked to President Jordan and was told not to get baptised, because of this conflict in his relationship. He was planning to go through a divorce, but he received answers to his prayers and miracles occurred. I taught him once with Elder Palmer about families from A Proclamation to the World and before this he was praying that the missionaries would teach him about families! At the end he and his wife fixed their relationship and she gave him consent for baptism. The gospel of Jesus Christ is truly amazing and the Lord will always provide a way for us to keep his commandments.

I hope all of you have a Merry Christmas! Always remember the Savior and his Atonement and everyday can be Christmas. Share the gift of Christmas to everyone and I know Heavenly Father will bless you.  


Love,

Elder Chew
White Elephant Game

A new convert and I

Mayor of Milton Keynes


Monday, 15 December 2014

15/12/14 - Country roads‏

Good afternoon,

Last week has been very interesting. We taught N. and finished the Plan of Salvation, she said that she would be coming to church. 9:30 came and she wasn't there again... We tried calling and texting, but she didn't get back to us. President Jordan's goal is for everyone to baptise before the end of the year and N. was our greatest hope, but she had to come to church and she didn't. Both me and Elder Judy were pretty disappointed. However, A (mentioned in last week's email) came to church! She told us she had a hard week, that's why she didn't get back to us and she is willing to meet with us this week.

That day we let the Bletchley 1 Elders borrow the car for the afternoon and we rode on the bikes to our appointment with the family - the referrals from Sister Lawson. The lesson went really well and they have a conditional baptism. They understood what we were teaching and have been committed to act on our message.  The wife is interested in learning about religion, but is still looking for the right one.  The husband was brought up as Church of England, but wasn't practicing and has done bible studies when he was younger. They have an adopted son who is going to be 7 soon. We're hoping for them to be baptised early next year! 

I put the subject title to be "Country roads", because of the incident we had last Tuesday. So I was driving to the Robertson's house in Buckingham with the Bletchley 1 Elders and it was pitch black country roads. I was looking at the road and it looked like it was going straight so I planned on going straight. I glanced at the Satnav and it showed a right turn. Immediately after, everyone in the car shouted at me to turn! So I quickly turned and tried slowing down, but we hit the curb quite hard. I was quite scared and we got out of the car to exam the damage. The only problem we could see was the front left tyre was flat and the rim was bent, so we slowly headed to the Robertson's house and Brother Robertson helped to put on the spare tyre. 

The next day we had a couple appointments in the morning and I told Elder Judy we need to go to the garage in the morning, but he told me that we would have to do it later after our appointments (that wasn't the best idea...) We picked up the Terry's to go to our lesson with us and brother Terry saw the spare tyre and rebuked me for not getting the tyre fixed earlier in the morning (we were on an exchange with the Bletchley 1 elders that day). After the lesson we headed to Kwik-fit and it turned out that a lot of things needed replacing... All 4 tyres needed replacing, because each one had a problem. The brake pads and discs needed replacing too because they were worn out. I know that the 2 tyres was my fault, but I felt like everything was my fault during that time, especially when I had to call up the mission office to tell them what happened. The Kwik-fit guy told us we needed to get a new wheel, because of the rim, but the guy managed to hammer it back into place. So luckily it didn't need to happen. Everything came to nearly £600 and Elder Davis told me that with country roads I need to be careful and to use high beams (I was using high beams, but didn't have them on during the incident, because I switch them off for a car just earlier). Sister Williams said that we can replace tyres, but not lives... I'm was expecting a call from President Jordan but he hasn't called, maybe when he sees the bill and my name next to it he will.
Accident

Pillsbury cinnamon rolls!

Love,

Elder Chew

Monday, 8 December 2014

08/12/14 - A White Christmas‏

Good morning,

Me and Elder Judy had an interesting week. We were struggling to find some new investigators and then on Sunday we got 4! A. (she's a progressing investigator with the same problem with previous investigators  - relationships issues) brought her friend B. to church for the first time and we setup a return appointment to teach them both! We spent some time finding around Furzton lake and talked to some good people. Unfortunately there didn't seem to be many people so we left to head to the business estate where we found good people before. As we were heading there, Elder Judy felt impressed to visit some referrals that were close by. He met with them before, but they were busy each time. We knocked on their door and the husband answered. He listened to us and remembers the missionaries from the trunk-or-treat event he and his family went to. We told him what we do and is interested, so we set a return appointment to visit with them this Sunday!  Apparently the wife is very interested and Sister Lawson (the member who gave us the referral) told us that she (wife investigator) wanted a blessing from our church! We called Sister Lawson and she's happy to come teach her friends with us! 

Afterwards we started tracting a road near the new found family's house. We talked to a nice lady named T. She knows there's a God, but doesn't go to church and she's willing to have us come back! Sunday was a fantastic day for missionary work! It looks like we're going to have a white Christmas, because we have 5 on date for baptism in the district. 1 of them is  H. who we've been teaching and she easily accepted baptism and is very interested in our church. She really wanted to go to church, but because of her Crohn's disease she hasn't been able to and had to go to hospital. Please keep her and the other investigator's in your prayers. I've finally been able to upload pictures so you should get them pretty soon.  Love,
Elder Chew



 Milton Keynes district
Flat Pics

View from our flat
 Trees near the chapel with the sunset
Sunset over Milton Keynes
View of Milton Keynes at the park
 Tina's awesome Russian dolls

Elder Cook at Hyde Park chapel

Furzton Lake

Elder Fisher putting

Pirate Island golf

Zone meeting

Monday, 1 December 2014

01/12/14 - Elder Quentin L. Cook

Good afternoon,

The past week has been very exciting! We had a mission conference with the London South mission, because Elder Cook came to visit! We drove down to the Hyde Park Chapel and there were about 500 people there! Everyone got to shake hands with Elder Cook too. This is the second apostle I've met face to face now. He shared many good experiences on his mission in England, he served with Elder Holland in the Romford area and he came out when the missionary age was lowered to 19! We asked him questions and someone asked about evolution. He told us that it hasn't been revealed to us yet whether or not evolution is true. He shared an experience about a biologist asking I believe it was Gordon B. Hinckley if it's okay to believe in evolution and still be a member of the church. The answer was that it's okay, but we have to be careful about what we believe, because the world's view changes.

Afterwards the AP's gave a presentation on the He is The Gift Initiative. This is a worldwide initiative that our church leaders want to do to help everyone discover the true meaning of Christmas. Yesterday we gave a presentation during the relief society/priesthood joint meeting. Everything went well and we were able to share the He is The Gift video which you can watch here -http://www.mormon.org.uk/christmas. We now have the limited edition He is The Gift pass-along cards to hand out to people (you should be able to get this from the missionaries in your area). We are then suppose to record how many investigators, referrals, baptisms etc that we get from using this new initiative. On December the 7th the church will be the only advertiser on Youtube, so make sure you invite your friends and family to check it out! I'm really excited for this He is The Gift initiative, I have never seen something like this before and I could feel the spirit from the video. I hope we use this opportunity to bring others to discover the gift, embrace the gift and then share the gift. I'm still having trouble with the library computers, so I will try to send pictures from the chapel computer if I can. 
Love, Elder Chew
Mission Conference with London South Mission

Monday, 24 November 2014

24/11/14 - I'm in Milton Keynes!

Good morning,

So I have been transferred to the Bletchley 2 area. Bletchley and Milton Keynes share the same chapel. I'm struggling to put pictures on from my camera with this computer, but I will try to send some later. Elder Judy is my new companion and he's the district leader here. He's in the same MTC group as Elder Imlay. Elder Judy is from Gunnison Utah and he's told me that he's had dinner at investigators' houses! I've never heard of such things and we plan to have one this week. The flat is really nice and I've got my first bunk bed (it's quite annoying, because it's really squeaky). We have the car in our area and I've been able to drive it lately too! Our area is suppose to have the bikes, but since Bletchley 1 shut down for a month due to an Elder crashing his bike, the Bletchley 2 Elders have been covering both areas with the car. Hopefully we don't lose the car, because it's so cold here. We're part of the Northampton zone, which apparently was the highest baptising zone last transfer! 

I'm starting to get to know the ward members here. Brother Newberry is our ward mission leader and he was really happy to find out that I'm from Barnsley, because he was born there (I think he's the first person I've met that's from Barnsley in the mission). Over the past few days here I couldn't stop thinking about Chelmsford and our investigators, but I know the Lord needs me here. In Bletchley we have a couple people ready for baptism, but both of them are still living with their boyfriends. We had a lesson about baptism and confirmation with one of the sister investigator last week and she is excited for baptism, but finds it very difficult to live in a separate home to her boyfriend. I'm hoping she will understand what choices she has to make in order to come closer to Christ.

Love,

Elder Chew

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

18/11/14 - Transfers!‏

Good afternoon,

Yesterday we received our move calls and it turns out that I'm moving to Bletchley, part of the Northampton zone! I'm feeling a bit sad that I have to leave, but I know that I'm needed there. Elder Imlay is staying in Chelmsford and receiving an Elder from Portugal. 

We have been working with our progressing investigator Marie and we finally got her to church! She seemed to enjoy everything and she even skipped her other church meetings to come! Femi, a recent convert taught his first Gospel Principles lesson about The Gathering of Israel and Marie enjoyed his lesson! She has a baptismal date for the beginning of December and it looks promising. Elder Imlay and his new companion will be seeing her this week.

The new mission plan for Chelmsford is going to start soon. Our ward mission leader Brother Stewart is organising a schedule so that we can visit all the members of the ward and give a "come into Christ" message. I found out that Elder Spoors that left Chelmsford about a month ago is being trained by Elder Eady from Sheffield! It's such a small world...

The main highlight for me last week was our adventure in a village near Chelmsford called Boreham. We spent a few hours tracting in Boreham, but didn't seem to have much success. We got a few wavy potentials that either are interested or just want to bash with us. It was a hard day and as we started to head back to the bus stop it was already night time. All of a sudden Brother Wheeler from the Maldon ward pulled us over and thanked us for what we are doing and gave us a box of Quality Street chocolates! He then drove off in the opposite direction. Me and Elder Imlay were so amazed at what happened!  We didn't tell anyone that we were going to Boreham (it's kinda in the middle of nowhere too) and Brother Wheeler who isn't even in our ward, found us and gave us chocolates. It was truly a blessing from the Lord.

Yesterday, we spent a lot of time doing service for the Holdens, a less-active family. We had to move a ton of stuff from their tables and shelves in order to move their furniture and get to the mold that was growing on the wall behind. It was a joint effort with the Sisters and with a lot of bleach we managed to get it off. I forgot to take pictures, but I will try to get some later today. Unfortunately afterwards, Elder Imlay failed his theory test by a couple points on both the multiple-choice and the hazard perception. I waited downstairs whilst he took his test and saw the people who finished the test leave. I could tell whether or not each one passed the test and it made me think about our test here on Earth. Are we going to leave with a smiling, happy face or not? Even though times have been hard I'm grateful that the Lord loves us and gives us opportunities to humble ourselves so we can qualify for his blessings. Missionary life is never bad, just hard at times.


Love,

Elder Chew
Wheeler Family. Brother Wheeler knows Brother Tredgett when he was little.

Lau family
Latest district photo

Monday, 10 November 2014

First Interviews

Good morning,

Last Tuesday we went to have interviews at Colchester. I told President Jordan that it's hard for people to keep their commitments, especially with the first appointment. He told me that as they feel the spirit when we first teach they will want to see us again. I've been praying that the Lord will help soften the people's hearts so more people can feel the influence from the Holy Ghost.

Sister Jordan looked at our area books and told us they're the worst she's ever seen. Then we had a small zone meeting during interviews and the zone leaders told us that we're the worst zone in terms of our numbers. I felt a bit down, but I believe that we're going through our "Aaron" days and that the Ammon days will come. There's a scripture that I recently read Alma 17:11 "11 And the Lord said unto them also: Go forth among the Lamanites, thy brethren, and establish my word; yet ye shall be patient in long-suffering and afflictions, that ye may show forth good examples unto them in me, and I will make an instrument of thee in my hands unto the salvation of many souls." 

For the training's we discussed about the talk "Fear Not, I Am with Thee" by President Uchtdorf for new mission presidents. Here's a few paragraph that I like: 

"Because of Christ’s sinless life and through the profound miracle of the Atonement, He created a way for us to be purified and glorious—a way for us to return to our Heavenly Father and to receive eternal life. 

But it is also interesting what else happened as a result of His rising from the tomb. This act of love transformed a band of frightened, worried disciples into a dynamic group of fearless missionaries who changed the world.

The events of that day have the potential and power to do the same for every servant of the Lord, for every missionary, for every one of you who is proclaiming and teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ."

President Uchtdorf talks about Peter putting away his fear and becoming a bold missionary. I know that I'm still working on it and it isn't easy, but I'm trying to rely more on Jesus Christ to lift me up. The Atonement allows us to receive God's grace for us and by giving our best efforts in applying the gospel of Jesus Christ we can access this divine power.


Love,

Elder Chew

Bonfire night
2014 SEMINAR FOR NEW MISSION PRESIDENTS - this is attached on Elder Chew's email 
Fear Not, I Am with Thee
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf
Second Counselor in the First Presidency
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
It is wonderful to be among friends. My dear 
friends, my beloved brothers and sisters, 
Harriet and I are indeed grateful to be with 
you as you embark on this great and 
marvelous journey to proclaim the Savior’s 
message to the nations of the world.
As we drove down here this morning, we 
were all excited to be with you. We wish we 
could give you a hug—each and every one of 
you.
Earlier this year as I prepared an Easter 
message, the question arose of why the 
Church doesn't celebrate more openly the 
events surrounding Easter.
When you think about it, as members of the 
Church we actually celebrate Easter week 
every Sunday by partaking of the sacrament. It 
was on the Thursday before Easter Sunday 
when the sacrament was established. As we 
partake of the sacrament we recommit 
ourselves to remember the Savior’s sacrifice 
and to keep His commandments. At the same 
time we are promised to have His Spirit to be 
with us at all times and at all places.
Think about what happened during the week 
following Palm Sunday and culminating in 
Easter Sunday, when Jesus Christ rose 
triumphant from the tomb. He broke the 
bonds of death and made it possible for all 
mankind to be resurrected.
For us as missionaries, as servants of the 
Lord, this is the core message we take to the 
world—“I know that my Redeemer lives.”
Make sure that your missionaries never forget 
this. Keep this in mind when you and your 
missionaries partake of the sacrament on 
Sundays and when you invite people to attend 
sacrament services with you. Partaking of the 
sacrament is a very sacred act. If you explain 
to those who seek truth what the gospel and 
the sacrament can be to them, you will touch 
their hearts.
Because of Christ’s sinless life and through 
the profound miracle of the Atonement, He 
created a way for us to be purified and 
glorious—a way for us to return to our 
Heavenly Father and to receive eternal life.
But it is also interesting what else happened as 
a result of His rising from the tomb. This act 
of love transformed a band of frightened, 
worried disciples into a dynamic group of 
fearless missionaries who changed the world.
The events of that day have the potential and 
power to do the same for every servant of the 
Lord, for every missionary, for every one of 
you who is proclaiming and teaching the 
gospel of Jesus Christ.
Please go back with me to the events of that 
Easter week in the Holy Land immediately 
after the Savior of the world was crucified. 
The disciples huddled together afraid, perhaps 
in disbelief that their Master was really dead. I 
can imagine them looking into each other’s 
eyes and feeling confusion, anger, and—
perhaps most of all—a profound and 
consuming grief. 
If you will recall, the day after Christ’s 
crucifixion the chief priests and Pharisees 
approached the Roman ruler, Pilate, and said, 
“Sir, . . . that deceiver said, while he was yet 
alive, After three days [he would] rise again.
Command therefore that the sepulcher be 
made sure until the third day, lest his disciples 
come by night, and steal him away, and say 
unto the people, He is risen from the dead.”1
Pilate approved that request, and a 
detachment of Roman soldiers guarded the 
tomb to ensure that no man would steal away 
the body.
It was just before dawn of that Easter Sunday 
morning when the earth began to shake and 
an “angel of the Lord descended from 
heaven, and came and rolled back the stone 
from the door. . . . His countenance was like 
lightning, and his raiment white as snow: and 
for fear of him the keepers did shake, and 
became as dead men.”3
Not long after, Mary Magdalene, with a few of 
the other women, came to dress Jesus’s body.4
“And they found the stone rolled away from 
the sepulcher. And they entered in, and found 
not the body of the Lord Jesus. And . . . 
behold, two men stood by them in shining 
garments . . . [and] said unto them, Why seek 
ye the living among the dead? He is not here, 
but is risen.”5
The women rushed back and told the eleven 
and the others with them what they had seen, 
but “their words seemed to them as idle tales, 
and they believed them not.”6
However, Peter ran to the tomb. And “he 
beheld the linen clothes laid by themselves,
. . . wondering in himself at that which was 
come to pass.”7
After he left again, wonderful Mary 
Magdalene remained alone and wept. She had 
also been at the crucifixion of the Savior.
There at the foot of the cross she endured the 
pain and humiliation of her beloved Lord. She 
had looked into His eyes and had watched 
Him die. This was on Friday.
That first Easter Sunday morning, it seemed 
like the universe was heaping one sorrow after 
another on that little band of disciples who 
had loved Jesus so deeply.
After a time, Mary Magdalene looked once 
again inside the tomb. But this time it was not 
empty. She saw “two angels in white sitting,
the one at the head, and the other at the feet, 
where the body of Jesus had [been] lain. And 
they [said] unto her, Woman, why weepest 
thou?” 
When I ponder her answer, I can feel the 
unimaginable, profound sorrow she must 
have endured. She replied, “Because they have 
taken away my Lord, and I know not where 
they have laid him.”
It was then that she sensed there was 
someone behind her. She turned and saw a 
man who spoke to her. “Woman,” He said, 
“why weepest thou? whom seekest thou?”3
© 2014 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
Mary thought that perhaps the man was 
someone who worked in the garden—perhaps 
he might have seen what had happened at the 
tomb. And so she said, “Sir, if thou have 
borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid 
him, and I will take him away.”8
Can you feel the pain in her words? Can you 
feel the desperation?
Can you feel the pleading of a disciple who 
loved her Master, who had helped pull His 
lifeless body from the cross, who had 
wrapped him for burial and laid him to rest?
And what of Jesus Christ who now stood 
before her? Can you imagine the Savior’s 
anguish at seeing someone He loved so deeply 
engulfed in such grief? And can you also 
imagine His joy for the message He was about 
to impart—the message that would change all 
mankind forever?
He spoke one word to her. I can almost hear 
it. He spoke with such tenderness, such love,
such joy. “Mary,” He said. And that one word 
opened her eyes.
She had heard Him say her name before. She 
recognized His voice. The Man she had 
followed and listened to stood before her.
“Master,” she said. And she went to Him but 
He forbade her to touch Him, saying that He 
had not yet ascended to His Father.
But He asked her, “Go to my brethren, and 
say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and 
your Father; and to my God, and your God.”9
My dear brothers and sisters, my dear friends,
you all know the story of what happened next:
how the Savior appeared to His disciples, how 
He invited them to touch Him and see for 
themselves that He lived.
He tarried with those who loved and followed 
Him, and He opened up the scriptures—
“Beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he 
expounded unto them in all the scriptures the 
things concerning himself.”10
He appeared to more than 500 people 11
during that time and “shewed himself alive 
after his passion by many infallible proofs, . . .
speaking of the things pertaining to the 
kingdom of God.”12
It is remarkable to me how things changed 
after that day. Before His death, Jesus’s
disciples were mostly in the role of witnesses 
and followers. They observed and learned, 
and they witnessed the Savior’s acts and 
teachings.
But everything changed for them after Christ 
rose from the tomb. The great senior Apostle, 
Peter, is of particular interest to me. Here was 
a man who was no stranger to adversity—he 
was a man’s man. How often had he steadied 
the rudder of his small fishing vessel during a 
threatening storm? How often had he 
bartered with shrewd merchants for the price 
of his fish?
And yet, what do we see in this “rock” of a 
man prior to the Resurrection? Among other 
things, we see fear!
When he stepped out of his boat on the Sea 
of Galilee and walked on the water toward the 
Savior, we see the beginnings of great courage 
and faith. “But when he saw the wind 
boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, 
he cried, saying, Lord, save me.”
Later, only a few hours before Christ was 
taken prisoner, the impulsive Peter boasted of 
his faithfulness. “Although all shall be 
offended, yet will not I,”14 he proclaimed to 
the Savior. And when Jesus prophesied that 
Peter would deny Him three times that very 
night, the great fisherman became even bolder 
and proclaimed, “If I should die with thee, I 
will not deny thee in any wise.”15 And the 
other Apostles were quick to echo his words.
Peter was one of the closest friends of the 
Savior. That terrible night of Jesus’s trial, 
Peter stood beneath the palace attempting to 
learn of what was happening when a maid 
approached and said, “Thou also wast with 
Jesus of Nazareth.”16
Fear overtook him at that critical moment.
Mark, who knew Peter well, 17 would later 
record the events of that night. Possibly on 
Peter’s instructions did Mark tell the story in 
all its humiliating detail.
Mark writes of Peter’s denials and even says 
that Peter “began to curse and to swear, 
saying, I know not this man of whom ye 
speak.”18
Peter later wept and agonized over that 
betrayal. With a broken heart, he pleaded with 
God for forgiveness. How could he have been 
so weak? How could he have allowed fear to 
make him deny the man whom he knew was 
“the Christ, the Son of the living God”?19
But from the moment Peter saw the risen 
Christ, he was transformed. He was a 
different man. Along with James and John, he 
was a true leader.
No longer was he afraid. From that moment 
on he boldly testified that “this Jesus hath 
God raised up, whereof we all are 
witnesses.”20
Peter fearlessly spoke in public places—even 
the temple itself. Peter, along with John, was 
taken into custody and the next day brought 
to the rulers, elders, and scribes for 
interrogation. Annas the high priest was there, 
and so was Caiaphas. It must have been an 
intimidating group—a group that held Peter 
and John’s lives in their hands.21
But any trace of the old, fearful Peter had by 
now disappeared in the magnificent refiner’s 
fire of that Easter morning. Peter bravely 
confronted those who condemned him—the 
very men who had slain His Lord—with 
miracles performed in the name of the Lord.
When he healed the lame man, he was asked 
by what power and through whose name he 
had done this. 22 Peter proclaimed: “Be it 
known unto you all, and to all the people of 
Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of 
Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God 
raised from the dead, even by him doth this 
man stand here before you. . . . There is none 
other name under heaven given among men, 
whereby we must be saved.”23
Such courage and boldness were not expected 
by the rulers of the Jews. The scriptures say 
that they marveled how these unlearned and 
ignorant followers could be so bold.24
These scholars of the law finally decided that 
the best course of action was to threaten them 
“that they speak henceforth to no man in this 
name . . . [or] speak at all nor teach in the 
name of Jesus.”25 For Peter and John, this was 
their opportunity to leave Jerusalem without 
penalty. 
“Whether it be right in the sight of God to 
hearken unto you more than unto God, judge 
ye,” the disciples said with boldness. “For we 
cannot but speak the things which we have 
seen and heard.”26
From that Easter Sunday morning on, Peter 
was a new man. He had been born again. For 
the rest of his life, Peter faced threats, ridicule, 
hatred, and humiliation. But he did not back 
down. He feared no man. Nothing kept him 
from fulfilling his mission to raise his voice as 
a witness of his Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
We do not know for certain what happened 
to this magnificent servant of God toward the 
end of his life. Tradition suggests that he was 
arrested in Rome and imprisoned. The Roman 
authorities had to keep changing his guards 
because Peter’s bold testimony had the effect 
of converting them nearly as fast as they could 
bring new ones in.27 That’s a true missionary!
Tradition also suggests that Peter was 
crucified at Rome, head down, because he did 
not feel worthy to be crucified in the same 
way as his Master and Redeemer.28
Now, I ask the question: What does this have 
to do with your sacred callings to proclaim the 
gospel of Jesus Christ? What does this have to 
do with your responsibilities to lead our 
missionaries?
My dear brothers and sisters, it has everything to 
do with you. This is the core of your calling.
Each day you put on your nametag, your 
badge of honor, you declare to the world that 
you are disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Like Peter, you have taken upon yourselves 
the name of the Lord and the great 
responsibility to spread the happy and 
glorious news of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The ancient Apostles were charged by the 
Lord to teach and baptize all nations, 
“teaching them to observe all . . . I have 
commanded.” 29 You are called to do the 
same. In this way you and your missionaries 
are the extended arm of the Twelve Apostles, 
with the same promise that the Lord will be 
with you, even unto the end of the world.
Every day of your mission you are faced with 
choices similar to what Peter had to make.
Like Peter, you have the same question before 
you: What kind of witness will you be?
Among the 86,000 missionaries serving today 
there are many who, like Peter, are fearless in 
proclaiming the truth. They approach each 
day with renewed vigor. Even in the face of 
ridicule, apathy, and hatred they raise their 
pure and joyful voices to proclaim the gospel 
of Jesus Christ.
Of course, there are also some who are afraid, 
as Peter once was. But in a sense, we are all 
like Peter. We each can see the fruits of 
Christ’s life, Atonement, and Resurrection in 
our discipleship.
The life-giving waters of the everlasting 
gospel are before us. Will we take just a few 
sips through a pinched straw? Or will we 
allow these waters to spring up inside of us, 
filling us with renewed energy and divine 
power?
During your mission, will you allow your fears 
to get the better of you? Will you give only a 
portion of your potential to the work before 
you? 
I am confident that I am speaking to those 
who serve God “with all [their] heart, might, 
mind and strength.” You are called to the 
work. And each day you serve your Savior by 
“[thrusting] in [your] sickle with [your] might,
. . . [bringing] salvation to [your] soul.”
To illustrate the potential and options for 
your missionaries and for you, let me share 
with you the experience of one missionary 
who seems to embody the fearless disciple we 
all want to be.
Three decades ago, a recently baptized 
member of the Church whom I will call Elder 
Strong accepted a call to serve as a missionary 
in Great Britain. When he left his home, his 
mother and father begged him not to serve a 
mission.
Even though it broke his heart to see his 
parents so troubled, Elder Strong felt peace in 
his heart about his decision because he would 
be serving the Lord. From the moment Elder 
Strong stepped off the plane in England, he 
began putting his entire effort into serving the 
Lord. It didn’t take long before he began 
developing a reputation as one who was 
fearless. And he worked so hard that other 
missionaries started calling him the 
“workhorse,” because he would pull his 
companions with him each day.
This kind of dedication wasn’t all that easy on 
his companions. Let me mention one specific 
new missionary whom I will call Elder Green.
Elder Green didn’t like Elder Strong’s style of 
missionary work. Elder Strong insisted that 
they get up early—even earlier than the 
handbook said—and as soon as they were out 
the door, they began speaking to people about 
the Church.
When they walked to the center of a town to 
street contact, they stopped people in the 
open-air malls and everywhere. Elder Green 
was absolutely terrified and later wrote, “I had 
given half-hearted attempts. Nothing had 
come of it and I was becoming depressed, 
irritable, and downright discouraged.”
Elder Strong, on the other hand, approached 
one person after another in his own special 
way and had many fruitful conversations.
When asked how he was able to do this, Elder 
Strong said, “I fear no man.” He really 
seemed to have no fear at all.
Seeing that Elder Green had plenty of fear, 
Elder Strong one day asked him, “Elder, do 
you know who you are?”
Elder Green considered this a typical Sunday 
School question and responded, “I am a child 
of God.” 
But Elder Strong smiled, opened his Book of 
Mormon to 3 Nephi 5:13, and read: “Behold, 
I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of 
God. I have been called of him to declare his 
word among his people, that they might have 
everlasting life.”
Then he looked at his junior companion and 
said, “Elder, you are a disciple of Christ! You 
fear no man!”
Something in those words seemed to 
empower Elder Green, and he felt suddenly 
energized. He walked to the front door of a 
health club and watched a strong body builder 
coming out of the door. He decided to test 
out his newfound courage on this giant of a 
man.
This is how he described the experience: “I 
stumbled through my dialogue and looked like 
an absolute rookie, then this man responded 
to the invitation to share a lesson with him 
with a surprising ‘yes.’” Over the next three 
weeks, this impressive investigator accepted 
the gospel and was baptized.
Still, Elder Green did not like this bold style 
of missionary work, and he argued with his 
companion about it continually. But Elder 
Strong kindly responded, “Elder, I fear no 
man, and that includes you. I will baptize with 
you or without you. I prefer with, but that is 
up to you.”
And then he said something else: “The Lord 
tells us to be bold but not overbearing. Being 
overbearing is showing boldness without love.
When people know and feel your love, you 
can never be too bold!”
One day Elder Green made a very insensitive 
comment about another religion. Elder Strong 
tried to talk to him about this, but Elder 
Green didn’t care for that inconvenient 
conversation. When the two missionaries 
finally arrived at home that night, the junior 
companion quickly jumped into bed, hoping 
his body language would signal the fact that 
he was not interested in talking. 
But Elder Strong came over to the side of his 
bed and said, “Elder, there are two reasons 
why missionaries get along as a 
companionship. Either they are working 
together as humble, obedient, and loving 
companionships or they get along because 
they are both doing the wrong things.”
And then he added, “When missionaries don’t 
get along, when they fight and argue, it is 
often because one missionary wants to do 
what is right and the other doesn’t care.” He 
paused for a moment and then said, “We do 
not get along, so I ask you tonight; please tell 
me, are you trying to do what is right?
Perhaps I am choosing what is wrong and I 
need to change.” 
That was all he said. 
Elder Green felt the Spirit while his 
companion spoke. And, as the darkness of 
night surrounded him, tears came to his eyes.
He had mocked Elder Strong for many of his 
methods, but he realized that night that he was 
the missionary who was not caring enough. 
Their conversation transformed him as a 
missionary.
Elder Green said that the two months he 
spent with Elder Strong were eventually the 
most important and formative days of his 
mission experience.
Elder Strong believed that his responsibilities 
while serving as a missionary were quite 
simple. He was to listen to the Spirit and to 
find and speak to people. When he wasn’t 
finding or speaking to people, he was to try to 
find and speak to people. Preaching the 
gospel is all he desired to do.
Elder Strong was never an assistant to the 
president. He was never a zone leader. But he 
trained many new missionaries. Training new 
missionaries is one of the most important 
leadership positions in the mission field.
In the mission where these two missionaries 
served, missionaries averaged two or three
baptisms over a period of two years. 
During the course of his mission, Elder 
Strong baptized many, many more. The 
number of baptisms is not always a sign of a 
good missionary. But Elder Strong’s example 
as a missionary is worth following because it 
teaches that we must work hard, depend upon 
the Lord, seek and follow the Spirit, have 
faith, be obedient, and fear no man.
The sign of a good missionary is also 
manifested in how one lives and honors 
gospel principles in the many years after the
mission. The fruits of a successful mission can 
be seen in the lives of our returned 
missionaries. It is how gospel values are 
applied as a husband or wife, as a father or 
mother, and as a son or daughter of Heavenly 
Father. It is “enduring joyfully” as disciples of 
Christ that will eventually show the success of 
a mission, long after the missionary badges 
have been retired.
Dear presidents and sisters, as you begin this 
new and exciting journey as disciples of 
Christ, I invite you to consider the example of 
the Apostle Peter, who overcame his fears and 
became a courageous missionary and leader of 
the Church. We can learn not only from 
Peter, but also from all missionaries who have 
the same kind of commitment and 
dedication—missionaries like the many you 
find in all the missions around the globe, 
missionaries like those who will serve with 
you.
Each day let us remind ourselves that we are 
disciples of the Savior Jesus Christ. And 
because He is with us, we do not fear.
Jesus of Nazareth lives! He is the rock of our 
salvation. Today, I bear witness that He lives.
I know Him. I know that my Redeemer lives. 
I know this beyond any doubt, beyond 
question, beyond debate. He lives! He is the 
Son of the living God. He guides this work.
He cares about you. He knows the silent, 
unspoken prayers of your heart.
As He inspired Peter, John, and all disciples 
who followed Him, He will lift up and inspire 
you. If you dedicate your work and will to 
Him and put your worries and fears in His 
hands, He will make you a great witness and 
disciple of Him, of His gospel, and of His 
Church. He will make you strong in testimony 
and fearless of heart. He will make you great 
mission leaders and great missionaries.
Christ the Lord is risen! He stands at the helm 
of His Church and His work. 
I bear witness that we have a living prophet 
again on the earth, our beloved President 
Thomas S. Monson.
As an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, I give 
you a blessing that as you incline your hearts 
and minds to the Savior, He will surely lift you 
up and strengthen you. He will visit you with 
knowledge, peace, and courage. He will 
lighten your sorrows and your load. He will 
bless your family at home, even your extended 
families. He will take care of you and the 
things you worry about. He will prepare the 
way for you and send His angels to surround 
and uphold you. He will help you to 
overcome fear. He will help you rise up and 
become even greater men and women of 
God.
My dear fellow servants, please know how 
much I love you. I am grateful for you. I pray 
for you. Today and always the Savior calls out 
to you:
“Fear not, I am with thee; oh, be not 
dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid.
I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee 
to stand, . . .
Upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.”31
My dear friends, dear brothers and sisters, 
may you feel that strength and that courage as 
you serve as His emissaries is my prayer and 
my blessing. I do this in deep gratitude for 
each and every one of you and in the name of 
our Master, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.