Monday, September 30, 2013

Week 46, General Conference, Families, and more!

Hey there! We had a pretty good week! Lots of good things coming forth. I am so excited for General Conference. It is a holiday in my eyes since for once, instead of me teaching, I finally get to relax and be taught myself. We are hoping to bring as many people as possible to GC (I mean... who wouldn't be converted after hearing President Monson and Elder Holland?).

We have been coming in contact with families! We have been praying endlessly to find families to teach. One family, Ava and Glen, we met while we were in the park playing sports a month or so ago has been reading the Book of Mormon on their own without us even inviting them to do so. They are a really cool family and are quite knowledgeable with the Bible. Elder Tuiaki and I both love them very much. They even made some delicious Filipino food for us which was amazing! We also have been in contact with a family of 5 that have lived in Staten Island for a very long time. The mom has been a member her whole life and the others are not. The two sons 17yrs, 15yrs, and daughter 13yr, are amazing kids They are unusual for NY. They are loving, obedient, and have really good spirits about them. Most teenagers out here are the opposite unfortunately. There are a few other families that we have been working with as well and it makes me so happy. I know how much the Gospel of Jesus Christ as restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith can help them so much! Having the priesthood in their homes and true knowledge of their Father in Heaven and Savior will bring peace and comfort they have never imagined. The Vasquez family with baptismal dates for October 13th are still working on preparing themselves. The date is coming pretty quick and we are still working with them. There may be a chance of pushing the date back which there is no problem with whatsoever.

We have sang in the ferry again on Friday and it was very successful besides the man that was swearing up a storm at us. We aren't sure what exactly happened, but he approached the table we had set-up and something triggered his PTSD from the wars he fought in Vietnam and he just flipped out. While we are singing there is such a unique spiritual bubble that surrounds us and once that man started in rant, it popped. We all felt the spirit leave and it was difficult to get back. The MTA Police came and made him leave and it was all well after that. My poor companion took the brunt of it. It was actually quite funny. My companion, being a big Tongan, was shooing him away because he was getting in his face and I am sure he was ready to take him down if he needed to. Elder Tuiaki is a big guy (you should see him bench in the mornings haha).

We had an activity called Operation Shepherd down in Midwood, Brooklyn. The 76 missionaries in the Brooklyn Stake all gather together in this area in Brooklyn and visited all 700 of the Less-Active members who the ward had little to no information. I was paired with my trainer from 6 months ago, elder McDonald which was so much fun! I love him a ton and it was cool to see how much we both have grown. We found a lot of people together as well. We gave one lady a blessing, found a family that is being prepared (funny story about this too. I called this family asking for a Timothy. And the lady on the phone says, "um... that is my two year old son. Who are you?" I was just like, oh man, this is awkward. I explained who I was and such. Then during this activity we knocked on their door and had a fun laugh at it all and found out that since their kids were blessed in Germany at the Grandparents ward, the church has their records. They even had the blessing certificate framed on their wall)!

Well all is well in Staten Island. I wish I could write some more, but Elder Tuiaki and I are going to Queens to play some volleyball! Talk to you all next week. Have a wonderful General Conference weekend.

Elder Hooper

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