Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Spelunking & Roll Call

Hello all!   30-6-2010
First of all yeah the communication thing is annoying.  i only get one hour to read and respond to your emails.  i only read them once.  i have not written any letters really.  i haven't printed them either.  Elder Carter says it is expensive but it can't be too bad.  i'll check it out.  yeah continue with the current email routine.  i don't get a chance to read the emails until wed morning.  maybe on sunday i could read them at the weilands house but not likely.  so maybe if you email by my sunday i will get them.  i am jealous of your letter writing in your mission.  email is time consuming.  why were your P-days sooo busy?

oh man i suggested an idea like your ward squirt several times the summer or two before bartlett. that sounds fun.  ok you can go on trips, but i'm saying we have to do a good one in two years.  i don't think i will be married too soon.  ha ha i can't see it.  i'm still following the world cup as best i can.  the biggest games are all played at 230 in the morning.  too bad usa lost.  every thing sounds good at home.  
i don't really know what to write this week.  it was also a quiet week for me.  first of all sorry this letter is late.  it is now 530 wed night.  we went to some burial cave thing with the weilands and sister clark.  so i could not email this morning.  

i guess i will give you an investigator update.  

first we will start with Hendri.  a few months ago he was living here.  is he 18.  he got randomly picked by the government to go to KL for military training.  he returned a few months ago.  we met him and he asked us when he could get baptized.  he has stopped drinking and smoking and has read some of the Book of Mormon.  he's looking good.  his scheduled date is in a few weeks.

next is jasmin.  she is aobut 28.  married with 2 kids.  i have already told you about her.  she has been out of town for two weeks.  we put her on date for july 24 but it looks like it won't happen.  because she has been gone we don't know how the smoking or reading is going and she obviously has not been at church.  it is annoying.  she wants to be baptized but she has been out of town, something to do with her passport.

sheila: things are not looking good.  she is the indian who is married with no kids who is also on date.  she does not answer her phone or return our calls or texts and does not open her door.  she has not yet come to church.  she isn't christian.  i think she realizes baptism is something important but she doesn't realize that she has to come to church and have lessons from us in order for it to happen.  we will probably drop her.

those are the three on date.

now chin.  ha ha he is actually crazy.  he is single and like 50.  he is a strange chinese man on the 9 o clock bus out of bandar.  we contacted him one day and some how got a return appointment.  he barely speaks malay and barely speaks english.  we just give him all chinese materials and tell him to read.  he has some how made it to church twice.  ha ha so right now he is our best investigator but we don't even know if he understands us.

sophie:  she is married with 6 kids.  sophie lives about 1 hour from sandakan.  she is related to one of our members.  we met her while she was visiting.  she comes into town every few weeks to visit and take her grandma to the hospital.  so we can only visit her when she is in town.  she also wants to get bapitzed but doesn't really know  how it all works.  and she is never in town.

rooney raney family:  these guys are awesome.  about two weeks ago we found these two kids.  rooney is a 17 year old boy and raney is a 16 year old girl.  we taught them about joseph smith and set up a return appointment.  the next time jasli sat it.  he is a 11 year old boy.  we taught lesson one.  next time ranijah, 14 year old girl, and rana, 10 year old girl, sat in.  they really liked it.  next time we got the parents to sit in.  we taught the plan of salvation.  next time the grandpa sat it.  so now we have a family with 8 people who are all doing really good.  they are hilarious.  we will have many more meetings with them so i will tell you more about them later.  
so that is basically the "strong" people we are teaching.  we have a few others.  all but one of those people has been found while i was here.  ha when i arrived we had no investigators.  so the work is slow but it is building.  at least we now have appointments these days.  oh yeah, at church this week we had 66 people!! it was packed.  oh man that was awesome.  hopefully that number keeps growing.  I'm thankful for your emails.  keep them coming.  an actual letter would be cool.  I love you.  keep me in your prayers.  ha ha it gets lonely out here without you guyssee you in 1 year and 8 months!
Elder Petersen

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hard at Work

ha ha ha i love your letters!!   23-6-2010
Man it is just so good to hear from you.  Just your simple day to day things are entertaining.  yeah yeah forward their emails.  I want to hear who these people are that know me.  i think they would all be flushed out by now.  Toy Story sounds awesome.  maybe they will put it on our approved list.  Hey don't go on any fun trips without me.  and when i get home you better plan a really really good trip.  I don't know when Zone Conference will be again.  probably the end of july.  and i have to go on a visa run in the start of august so i could pick up any package then as well.  what is the neighborhood squirt out?  

dad that is so interesting about all of the college shifts.  keep me updated.  i hope the utah byu rivalry continues and i hope we can do good in the pac 10.  we need respect.  oh man i wish i could have watched that game with brett.  ha ha that would have been hilarious!!  ha ha what a goof.  i know what you are saying about bradley's church.  i've been there.  it is not the same.  our ward is like home.  i miss it. and i'm glad to have your permission to watch the world cup.  it is awesome.  so much excitement.  we try to time some of our dinners so that it will be on in the resteraunts we eat at.  ha its cool.  we saw a 7-0 win the other day.  it is definately a cultural thing.  i think it would be bad to not watch it.  plus it is a way to talk with the young men in the branch.  they all love it.
so big week.  first off was zone conference.  it was really fun.  i know that in the next two years i will become sick of airports and those cramped airplanes but right now it is ok.  like i said, we have a small zone.  after i finished emailing last week we went over to the church and had interviews with president clark.  i love that man.  he is so smart.  having his sister and mother in sandakan has been nice.  i've heard some sweet stories about him.  he is very into outdoors.  i think i can get him to hike mount kinabalu next zone conference with us.  the interview was good.  he answered many questions i had.  that night all of us younger missionaries went bowling and hung out in kk.  the next day is when we had training and stuff.  it went from 8:30 to 5:00 with a lunch break in between.  very long but pretty good.  i was told right before the meeting that we were supposed to have prepared talks and that three of us would randomly be called to give them.  you guessed it, i was called.  ha ha i just talked a little about hiking experiences and talking to people on the trail and related to to talking to everyone we meet to find investigators.  it turned out really well.  all of the older missionaries said so anyways.  i was just mad my companion never told me about this.  ha ha oh well. 
we found an awesome family.  last week we met the five kids.  ranging in age from 17 down to 10.  we taught them and they are very nice.  very funny.  the 11 year old boy is crazy.  he always just randomly starts laughing at me.  ha ha it is good.  i think we have the kids' trust.  their parents were never home.  they all came to church.  yesterday  we finally had a lesson with the whole family.  we taught them the plan of salvation.  i think they really enjoyed it.  they want to all come to church but the dad works most sundays.  i could see them all becoming active.  very nice and very fun.  only the three oldest kids know how to read.  the parents do not know.  this is a small challenge but we told them to all read together as a family.  i think they will.   our other investigators are doing pretty good.  we got Jasmin to commit to stop smoking and set a baptismal date.  thats awesome.
HAPPY FATHERS DAY!!!!   i missed it again.  last year i was at camp.  dad i love you.  you are so awesome.  so spiritual so smart so funny so likeable.  ha ha you better not be too old to play basketball or go running in two years.  now that i am on my mission i want to hear more of your mission stories.  i can relate.  i don't know about any of your baptisms.  did you have any.  what did you usually do all day.  anything crazy ever happen.  let me hear it.
i love you all.  i look forward to your letters and emails.  don't forget about me as you go off and have fun this summer.  thank you for your love and support.  You are so amazing.  ha ha i don't even know what to say.  i can't express what i am feeling here.  just know i love you and miss you.
Elder Petersen

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Soccer Everywhere :)

Hello one and all!  Apa Khabar! 
June 16, 2010
we had a good week here in Sandakan.  I don't even know where to begin.  First of all i loved your emails.  wow the Weilands are fast.  yesterday i asked them if they could email you any pictures they took over the weeks.  I didn't think they'd do it that night.  As you can see i'm having fun here.  Youth conference sounded like a blast.  The kickball game sounded awesome.  Spencer is hilarious.  Hey when is the Jamboree.  Also make sure you can get those Yoda patches.  I think you have to apply for them.  they are sweet.  Keep me updated on the Utes.  So the jazz are going with the note?  what color.  That is so awesome.  Hey who won it all?  

Well like i said things are going good here.  I don't know if you ever see the World Cup but is on everywhere here!  we were eating at a restaraunt the other night and they had this huge projector set up and were playing the opening ceremony live.  It was awesome!  it is huge.  It is like they olympics but just one sport.  The whole world watches.  I'm looking to buy a jersey.  Thought it would be a good souveniour.  Maybe i'll wait and see who takes it all.  

So on Saturday we had a bapitsm scheduled.  It was a boy named Jeffery.  He is eight.  Normally missionaries don't teach eight year olds but his family is all inactive.  so we reactivated them and taught him.  It was all going good until we taught the word of wisdom.  everyone here drinks tea!! even the little eight year old.  we found out a week ago so the baptism got pushed to this saturday.  on monday we found out he drank again so now it is two more weeks away.  The problem is that his father does not believe in the Word of Wisdom.  and Jeffery just drinks what he's given.  It's a struggle.  

There is some good news.  We just put a solid investigator named Hendri on date.  He is so ready to be baptized.  he is 18 and also wants to serve a mission.  so thats good.  other than that the work is pretty slow.  we teach a lot of random lessons.  we taught this chinese man yesterday who barely spoke english and malay.  elder carter used what little chinese he knew.  ha ha we'll see what happens.  

Yesterday was Elder Carter's birthday.  so now he has almost been out for one year.  it was a good day.  we had pizza hut with the couple and a home made cake from the couple.  it was fun.  then we ate dinner at sister marrycle's.  she is a solid member.  she is the relief society president and her husband is now in the district presidency.  oh man she made a lot of food.  ha ha so much!  after i finished a huge plate and was sitting there, she loaded it up again with even more than the first time.  it was really good spaghetti but too much.  i really almost felt like throwing up.  ha ha so i sat on the ground with Jason, her 17 year old son, and talked.  he is big into football and was watching the world cup.  i might have glanced at the tv screen as well.  ha so it was a good birthday i'd say.

Right now i am in KK.  it was a good short flight.  we flew past Mount Kinabulu.  President Clark really wants to climb it so we will try to convice him to do it next zone conference with us.  we have not really done anything yet so there is nothing to report but next week i'll tell you how it goes.  I learned that we are in the smallest zone.  two elders and a couple and a senior sister in sandakan, two elders in tawau, two elders two sisters and a couple in kk.  thats it.   ha ha so we'll see.  and i learned that we have the crummiest house.  ha ha so things can only go up.  but things are going good.  i'm getting used to the area.  the language is good.  this state, Sabah, is the best malay speaking area of Malaysia.  so that is good that i started here.  i had a lot of concerns and questions for president clark but throughout this week have decided to not ask most of them.  no point in crying over spilt milk you know.  so we'll see how that goes.  like i said, i'll report next week.
well i enjoy your letters.  don't worry about me.  i am good here. don't worry about any natural disasters hereSabah is nicknamed the "land under the wind".  it is protected on all sides.  there has literally never been any earthquakes or tidal waves or tsunamies or anything here, ever

i can't wait to get your letters.  they all make me laugh.  you guys are just so awesome.  i love you! have you got any of mine? oh yesterday i read an awesome talk.  you should look it up.  it was elder bednar's saturday morning talk in conference in october 2009.  check it out.  i've been reading the ensign a lot lately.  all conference editions.  i love the talks!  ha ha i'll tell you if i read any good ones. alright don't forget about me here.  ha ha i'll be home soon.
Elder Petersen

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Name Tags OKAY!

Hello all!
oh man i love your letters.  they are always interesting.  please do not get lazy in a few months and stop writing.  you wrote so much i don't even know where to begin to comment.  ha so just know i enjoyed them all.
so i have a lot of random stuff to tell you this week.  first of all i never told you about the name tag thing.  so starting with my group from the mtc, they are telling everybody to start wearing your name tags again.  everywhere, proselyting, through customs, on p-day, always.  so now basically we are just like regular missionaries.  ha ha so i never got to experience the no name tag sensation.  oh well. in all honesty our name tags get a lot of attention and they distinguish us from the Jehovah's Witnesses.  I can't imagine not having them.
Happy Birthday Jaynanne!!!!!!!  have you got any of my letters?  how was your birthday.  i hope is was good.  you are so old. ha ha good luck as a senior. 
hey did you guys ever get my package from the mtc with those pictures.  speaking of pictures, i want to send you some pictures but i am waiting until i have enough that it would be worth it to make a cd.  so just be patient.  if you send me a package could you maybe send a journal.  i'm going to fill mine soon.  and send me more pictures of you all.  i left most of the ones i had in singapore on accident.  i like the blog.  that picture of me at the top is huge! maybe you could shrink it a little.
so funny story.  in malay the p and the f are very much the same, almost interchangeble.  so the other day in our coorelation meeting we were talking about the branch social.  Jason, who is a return missionary and native of Sandakan, was talking.  he kept saying farty instead of party when talking about the social.  i was cracking up!  it was so funny but no one else was laughing or even seemed to notice.  ha ha anyways that is just one funny story about the language.  it is funny when people speak english because a lot of the things do not translate correctly.  i love it. 
well the work here is still pretty slow.  the thing is that sandakan is like 80% muslim and it is against the law to teach them.  so we have to find chinese or christians and then they have to be willing to listen.  we are truly seeking out the elect.  we always find pretty good people and set up return appointments but they always avoid us after thatnever answer their phone.  never answer their door.  so it is hard.  we are working hard every day but it doesn't seem to be paying off yet.  patience i suppose.  last week at church an investigator named sophie brought her family to church unexpectedly.  so that was really really awesome!  hopefully she keeps progressing.  she has expressed desire to be baptized so we will keep praying for her.  we found out that one of our investigators drinks and another smokes!  ha dang.  and these two were both doing really well. like i said, we'll keep praying.
next week is zone conference in kk(kota kinabulu) so i might not email on the same day.  i'll let you know how that goes.  thank you for all of your support and awesome letters.  sorry mine are short and random.  i have so much to say but i can't get it all out. ha ha oh well just know I love you and i'm safe and doing well
Elder Petersen