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