Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Intense Visa Extension...

This week was pretty intense. First we had no idea what we were going to be doing for visa runs. We figured we were going to just get an extension in Butterworth but then we received a call from Sister Carpenter, the Office couple saying we were going to Ipoh for an extension but, they have the same giant sticker they put in your passport here. So what it looks like is your picture with a Malaysian passport and it takes up a whole page in your passport. They didn't want us to get those because they cause a lot of problems so they were going to send us to Singapore. But they didn't they just told us to get an extension here because it was too late to send us to Singapore. So right now I will be going to Singapore February 2 or sooner but we have no idea. So I got my extension this morning and so everything is fine for now. I can't remember if I told you but next week we are going off to Kuala Lumpur again for zone conference we leave next Wednesday and come back Friday.

Umm this week was pretty normal. We meet a guy named Suresh who is pretty sweet. He came to church once already and he is one of the first Hindu people to come to church in a long time. And he really liked church.

Funny story for the week is I forgot our house keys inside the house and so we couldn't unlock our bikes or get back inside so we had to somehow get back inside. So Elder Leavitt squished through the gate and somehow got in it was crazy for about 45 minutes. So then we got our keys and then placed a spare key so now we won't have to do that again ha-ha.

So this week we also got invited to a catholic party at the church last night. So we went and pakai'd Biasa dressed normal and went. It turns out it was all in Tamil but was still way crazy. They started out with some crazy prayer and then worshiped some and then wham! They all started having like seizures and speaking in tongues and it was way crazy and that went on for maybe 10 minutes and then they worshipped some. It was freaking crazy. Then they had some crazy Candle Dance and some Tamil girl danced to some music and had all these crazy piercings. So then we left feeling like, what... and still had no doubt in our minds which church was true ha-ha. This week we also saw Joseph a man who has been catholic for 66 years and he likes our church but is having a hard time choosing because he’s a warden and a committee member in his church. So we watch with him Elder Holland's talk from last conference and after it he said he really needs to read the Book of Mormon. So things are going good with him. Oh yeah and we also found out that Anthony from Myanmar used to be a professional lightweight boxer. Crazy huh?!?

They do celebrate Christmas here it’s just like a holiday here for most people and for the Christians here it’s a little more I think. Everyone here is going crazy over the movie 2012 or something like that some members in Penang Branch have been teaching false doctrine because of it and everyone is always asking us about it. And on the matters of false doctrine we ran into some Jehovah Witness and they gave us some pamphlets but I guess they believe the 2nd coming already happened and that Christ is here and he’ reigning invisibly.... yeah and so that’s pretty much all for this week. Later.
Elder Watkins

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

First Baptisms

Nathan, Brother Titus, Ooi, Ericka and Elder Leavitt

So this week was pretty dang sweet. The baptism was a complete success and Ericka and her mother Ooi were baptized. I ended up baptizing Ericka and Brother Titus baptized Ericka’s mother. We go out to the pool to start the baptism then it starts pouring rain like no other it was crazy. So we were already wet before we even got in the pool ha-ha. It was a great! Then the next day at church Elder Leavitt confirmed Ericka and I confirmed Ooi. It was overall… pretty intense.

This week we also found a great guy named Suresh who is an Indian man who is Hindu but has a giant picture of Jesus that his neighbor threw out one time. When he told us the story it was funny because he was really upset…because you just can’t throw away a picture of Jesus because he is a super powerful man, is the way he put it. Which is all true but the way he said it was funny. He used to work as a money transporter or something like that where he carried an M16 and a Glock and they drove an armored truck for a bank. Then he decided it was too intense so then he became a DJ at a club and then started to drink a lot and didn't like what it was doing to his life so he quit and stopped drinking and smoking. And then we found him ha-ha but the missionaries a year ago had found his younger brother whose 14 and had given him a pass along card with our card attached which he still had sitting with his family photos. He’s a great guy and he reads everything we’ve given him so far. He’s way nice and already loves the church. Last night we challenged him to pray about Joseph Smith after watching the Joseph Smith movie and he said he will and that he tried and felt good but didn't know if he did it right.

We are also teaching a girl named Jasmine and she’s way good already reads the Book of Mormon and just needs to come to church at this point she’s about 19 and is way cool because she asks all the question you want them to ask as a missionary ha-ha.

This week has also been intense as in we haven’t had water from Saturday till Monday afternoon because our pump wasn’t working or something so the 25 floor to the 28 floor didn’t have water. Then our phone line was cut today because they somehow cut it while fixing the water down below... yeah pretty annoying... Well that’s all for this week. Later.

Elder Watkins

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Paper Airplanes...

So before I forget it was 7-11-09 here in Malaysia since they do the date backwards. So we went and got free slurpees at the two 7-11's in our area. To our disappointment the free one was only 8 oz ha-ha they were so small but everything here is way small. Water cups are ridiculously small at McDonalds since I have now been there twice with Elder Thorne repaying us for helping them move and then cleaning the outside of the church. Basically there are no trash cans anywhere so people throw their trash everywhere which is way annoying but oh well. And that’s really the only service I have done here besides helping move the Thorne’s.

So here come the stories for the week. The first one is way exciting. The church is signing a contract with Google for our email :) so now the church will have Gmail accounts and still have the amazing spam filter and it won't be down all the time woo-hoo ;). Next story is Elder Barlow bought a durian and because they smell he hung it out the window on the 26th story of our building. I am guessing you know where this is going but, so Elder Leavitt and I make it home before them and we didn't know. And the new hobby at our home is to make paper airplanes and throw them out the window and watch them glide forever and they race the cars and go forever and its way cool. So we went to throw our airplanes and all of a sudden we hear whoosh and we look down and a bag with something in it is falling to the parking garage. Oh no ha-ha we thought it was the Jenga blocks we used to teach with so we hurry to the elevator and go to the 6th floor. Lo and behold it is a durian ha-ha, ha-ha smashed all over so we quickly clean it up and throw it into the building dumpster and run away ha-ha. So we had to buy a new one the next day but it made for a great story.

We got kacau way bad at a couple of flats. So we got kicked out of one by an ornery old Chinese guy and it sucked because it was right as we were talking to a new person so we never finished that. So we get kacau'd all the time (kacau = bugged, pestered etc) Umm next we went to a Thai and Buddha temple by the place where we saw the monkeys in the trash and turns out the monkeys live by the temple in the forest so we saw some more monkeys and some cool statues of snakes elephants and dragons which were all life size and totally cool.

We say the Ibans again this week and they gave us 3 more referrals so it was sick. Basically that is the taste of East Malaysia tons of referrals cause everyone in a Kompung is kind of related and Ibans are a way nice people. We also have another investigator named Joseph Benedict like the current Pope and he is catholic he came to church on Sunday and loved it only problem is he has been Catholic for so long he said it’s going to be a hard to decide if he should switch churches so we had a great lesson about prayer and scripture study and read Doctrine and Covenants 9 about study in your mind etc. His wife is really sick just had brain surgery for a tumor and is still recovering so he asked if we would give her a blessing so we did and it was way intense I just sealed the oil but still. He said she is doing better and he came to church that week and in priesthood we talked about blessing and it went great.

Today we finally made it to the Pasar pagi and it was sweet had cool shirts it’s pretty much like a swap meet but under cover not as big and lots of cool stuff but more useful stuff like shoe horns, shoe polish, knifes, shirts, backpacks, and foot massages etc ha-ha. Umm that’s all to report for this week. Peace out. Selamat Patang.
Elder Watkins

Pasar pagi (morning market) where housewives and old folks go to do their daily shopping.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Things are good in the land of Malaysia

He didn't label the photos but I think this is the members in Butterworth

The missionaries with some of their investigators

Hello everyone. Things are going good here in the land of Malaysia still crazy and still intense as usual. I guess I’ll start off with after leaving John and Anthony the Myanmar guys’ house we saw like 5 monkeys eating some trash out of a garbage can one who looked like the king monkey and couple others that were just little servants just chowing down on some good old trash ha-ha. Along with 3 puppies and 1 kitten joining in ha-ha. It’s kind of sad here all these puppies and dogs are just abandoned here and they look so sick and nasty and usually chase us ha-ha. But usually they chase Elder Barlow because he has eaten dog so, the myth is if you eat dogs for the rest of your life dogs they will know and hate you for it ha-ha. Ericka's mom Ooi Sok Choo got a job working at one of the kindergarten kid things here, which are all over the place so she had to cancel her baptism interview date :/ but we got it in after church :) and the best part is she totally passed and was way excited when Elder Barlow held up the picture of Joseph Smith and Jesus Christ and God. It is totally exciting to see her progress and see her love for the gospel. Ericka and her are great and are progressing to the 14 of November for their baptisms. Both will help strengthen this branch. Missionary work is great and the tuff part is finding people by knocking on doors because some people will just say ok ok ok ok k ok ok ok a lot and set up and then they are not there or cancel on us... so finding new good people is frustrating sometimes but, when you find that one good person it's totally awesome. Next totally awesome story is about an Iban family in our branch who lives in Kulim which is like 40 minute drive away from the church and they come as much as they can. This Sunday they came and brought relatives named Mabywell and Nady. So that day we went out with Elder and Sister Thorne and taught them the 1st lesson. Nady just texted as if he was a 16 year old here but he’s really like 26 and Mabywell was amazing asking all the right questions like well how can we know this is a true prophet and such. He's already been baptized in the Methodist church before but he said if he knows it is true he will be baptized in this church. Iban's are such amazing people. One of the Ibans son's or Lidam’s son Amstel (btw…the Iban is a tribe from East Malaysia) is way cool he is fifteen. He told me at church how his goal is to come to church every week but it is very hard from them because they have an old van that breaks down every other week... this week it’s the radiator so it’s expensive to fix but they now come with Mabywell and Nady and how he wants to go on a mission right now. He is way cool he is the one who invited them to church and I gave him some of our cards and he passed them all out to friends and neighbors. So I gave him some more to give out. To answer Janet's question I ate the soup 1 because I had to try it and 2 because I didn't want to offend him and it was very expensive to buy. But he said he could tell I didn't like it all too much ha-ha but this was Brother Titus and he’s a champion about missionary work. He just became our branch mission leader too. Oh also about John he is down to 1 cigar thing he smokes instead of 6 a day :) but, it just a leaf wrapped in these cigarette things so we think it’s just a tobacco leaf that they smoke so its addicting but not a lot because it doesn't have all the crap cigarettes do. He smokes them basically out of habit not because he likes them. So he is moving right along. We also did companion exchanges yesterday so Elder Thomas and I went out and baptized people ha-ha or tried to communicate with them ha-ha. It went well and Elder Barlow and Leavitt found a good catholic family of 5 who are interested in learning. But teaching Catholics got harder because the priest got all mad and told all them not to listen to the white people or orang putih ha-ha but those we have and who want to learn are learning.

That’s everything for this week.

Elder Watkins