Tuesday, May 13, 2014

I want to tell you about some things I've discovered...

Dear Friends and Family,

Happy Mother's Day!  I love my mom!  In church the primary kids sang a mother's day song.  For the last verse they sang and did sign language along with it.  It was very touching.  I want to tell you about our investigators right now so here you go.

Deaf Investigators first: Mr Yip is doing very well! We showed him the restoration video and the visual really helped him understand the First Vision. He says he believes it. He is reading the Book of Mormon slowly but surely. He has kept faithful in going to church. He is excited for his baptism next month! Mr. Wong is doing well. He could not make it to church this past Sunday, but he is meeting with us this Wednesday. He turned down the first invitation for baptism on account of being nervous. He said he wanted one year to prepare! We are not too worried. We really have faith that he can be baptized in the month of July. We really want him to come to know Christ better. He has very little knowledge of Christ, and I suppose all people in a way have the same problem. But we are doing our best to help him develop faith in Jesus Christ. We also met with Hu this past week. We feared that it was over after his text saying: "I cannot join because I'm not used to your church." But he sent us a text on Saturday morning saying: "Sorry I forgot about class last night!" After which we were able to schedule him to meet in Wan Chai, where he lives. He is getting married in the end of May in mainland. He will not be back until June. From what he told us, his family is very opposed to the church. But he met with us again. We are hoping and praying that he has a testimony enough to know we are good people. We contacted two referrals who were new deaf people. One is a lady named Sister Man. The other is a man named Mr Fok. They are both very old. Sister Man has real interest. Mr Fok does not have as much. We will see Sister Man again this week.  

Other Investigators: Our new investigator this week was Cathy. She was a walk-in to the Church a week from yesterday. She is doing a project for her graduate degree on other religions. She is a theology major. We were concerned at first that her interest was primarily to "interview" us. It turns out she tried to! When we met she brought out a list of questions prepared. We lead her questions into the Restoration and actually had a fantastic lesson. She does not yet believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet, or that we have continuing revelation. But she said she would pray about it. We thought that lesson was the end, but last night she contacted us asking about temples and family history work. She herself wanted to know if everyone can do family history work through the Church website, or if just members can participate in that. She said she will come to church this coming Sunday. We are expecting the best! Another investigator we met with is Bryan. He is a very sincere young man. His school is Catholic. We taught him about prayer. He really loved how we pray, and he said a great prayer. We are also hoping for the best there! We met with a former named Brother Wong. He sees our church's commandments as restricting. He is willing to meet, but he says keeping commitments and commandments is no good for him.  This past week we did not see the Tse Family, but we are hoping they just went to mainland for vacation or something.

All around I want to tell you about some things I've discovered. Communication has nothing to do with speech.  I've learned a lot from Sister Chan, I've realized that I haven't communicated so well with a friend in a long time, and she cannot speak.  In her time as an investigator, her only concern was having someone that cared enough to learn sign language and speak with her.  My belief is that if you care about the person and what they are saying, you will understand them.  If you have a true desire to understand what they are saying, then at length you will.  Communication problems come not from a Language Barrier, it comes from a lack of care from one party or both.  It is true with Chinese as well.  People need to feel needed.  If there is no charity, then all is for naught.  People should never be viewed as temporary or as obstacles to ourselves.  They should be treated as eternal, because they are eternal sons and daughters of God.  I know that to be true. 

Elder Phillips

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