Monday, July 6, 2015

A Beautiful Baptism & Playing the Yuanzhumin Drums

Two smiley Sisters:)
So we were riding along in the heat of the day when on the side of the road I saw this young girl on a bike. Then I noticed her shorts... SHE'S #10. SHE'S A YELLOW #10.  I immediately pulled over and talked to her. It was so fun. I think she was super confused to why this American girl felt so connected to her... but the connection between yellow #10s is really deep in my book. haha :) Mom note: (for those who don't know, Maddie's club soccer team wore yellow uniforms and she was #10:)
It's always time for ice cream!!!
Dear Family & Friends,

Here are a few hi-lights from this week:

1- Hunter's Baptism was awesome! THERE WERE A MILLION PEOPLE THERE.

 All large events are super stressful as a missionary because basically you're just running around like a chicken with your head cut off trying to talk to everyone and make everyone feel welcome and loved and the spirit and such. But luckily we have an awesome ward who took pretty good care of our investigators who came! Chen jiating (our neighbor and her daughter) all came to the baptism! It was a miracle! They were pretty confused about why our baptism was the way it was and so we're working on helping them understand that we do baptism the same was Jesus was baptized. 

The baptism service was beautiful. Hunter's mom shared about how she knew so strongly that Heavenly Father loved her son. He had sent Elder Forbes all the way to Taiwan to help him be baptized :) She cried and it was very beautiful. Sister Walker and I also sang the song Follow the Prophet because it's Hunter's favorite. We also took the liberty of using the cups and hitting them in rhythm to the song. It was really fun :)

After Hunter was baptized he went up and bore his testimony. He simply and sweetly bore of the power of the Spirit in helping him. It was the best.
Family & friends at Hunter's baptism
Sister Giles & Hunter
2- Seminary Graduation. This year Taidong had one young man graduate from Seminary. It was super cool and so we threw him a gigantic party! There was singing and dancing and jokes and... SOCCER! It was so much fun to be able to kick around even if it was just for a few minutes. I also got to play the Yuanzhumin drums. It was so much fun. haha We had a blast just bonding with our ward. It's so fun to be a part of building the foundation of the church here. I think back to my seminary graduation and there were at least 300 kids. One day Taiwan will have that too. I'm sure of it :) 
Soccer at seminary graduation!  PERFECT:)
Playing the Yuanzhumin drums!
Practicing before the performance:)
3- Trip to Luye: This week we went to Luye. So the ye in Luye is the same ye in Kuangye (wilderness). From the picture you can see why :) haha. But we went to Luye with the Elders and it was awesome. There's one family that lives up there that makes up the entire Young Women's program so Sister Walker and I really wanted to make it a point to go up there, but it's hard because it's pretty dang far away. But we made the effort to get up there and it was awesome :) Then just yesterday all the girls got up and bore their testimonies :) It was the best thing ever. I really have been trying to gain relationships with them so that they can then help our investigators and it was so sweet to see their testimonies blossoming right before our eyes. I have SO MUCH FAITH in the youth of Taiwan.
Luye is in the country and is so green and beautiful!!!
Visiting with our amazing Young Women and their family in Luye:)
4- We went to the beach on P-day and it was magical. I've always loved the beach, and I think that is one of the reasons God let me serve on this beautiful island :) It always just fills my spirit up with love and peace and joy and... ya :) I know God loves his kids.

This week was filled with all kinds of events and many things that kept me very busy. I was very thankful :) I know that God loves us. He sent me some rain today :) I'm thankful to be on a mission. I'm thankful to be in Taidong. I know the church is true.

Gu Jiemei
It's always so great to be with the Hou Family. It was also awesome to have Elder Forbes and his wife come for the baptism of Hunter:)

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