Saturday, October 31, 2009

When ye are in the service of your fellow beings . . .

Dear Mum and Dad,
G'Day from Australia! Things have been going well! In response to your letter:
Teeth are good, glasses are perfect.
No, we don't do daylight savings.
Transfers are in a week and a half. There could be 4 of us staying here because we are getting a new program for all the work we do in the office so President might keep Elder Hoskins and his future companion who will be opening a new area up north, in the office for a few weeks to help Elder Mooney and I out.

Things are pretty hectic. Seems like things are always falling apart - but look at the work. It progresses and it does so fast! I love it.
One lesson I learned today was service. I'll be honest, today we had an awesome P-Day planned out and last night we get a call from our Elder's Quorum President. He asks us to help out with a new move in today right during the time we would be hiking a mountain off of Surfers Paradise in the Gold Coast. I'll admit- I was devastated! Of course we helped out and it became such a blessing. We got there and the Elders Quorum President was there with 3 other men and they really needed the help of 5 missionaries. The truck was huge and full and a lot of loose items but we got done in a good 2 hours. Helping others is way better than anything for personal reasons. I always felt good doing it back home but dismissed the feeling. I always seem to need to learn these lessons again but I know I'll make it. When ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God. And how, in any way, could it be bad to serve your God? It always equals happiness.

This week was great. We had our interviews with President and I always love that. And before I forget to mention, President and Sister Richards had just the office elders over for dinner this last week. That was awesome and allowed us to get to know them more. President Richards was in a Stake Presidency for the past 20 years. Sounds like Dad. :)

In our ward, the ward mission leader is epic. He is known all across the mission. Pure Aussie and bold. Anyway with his help we are having cottage-meetings now. This Sunday is the first. The Assistants have been working hard on this for quite awhile. A few of the strongest families in the ward are bringing non-members to this cottage meeting (get to know you so they feel comfortable coming to church. And when they do come to church they know several families already) on Sunday and we are expecting around 50 people, probably half non-members. We're excited to see how it goes.

Well, I love you all and continue praying for you. Thank you again for your prayers.
Love you mum and dad,
God Speed
Elder Hales

That is a very good scripture. In the MTC they told us that our purpose was to get these people to the Celestial kingdom. I love the temple. We get to go this next Friday.

Friday, October 23, 2009

What Mothers do not want to hear

Dear Mom and Dad,
That is so exciting for Jordan!!! Tell him I say congrats.
I am fairly healthy! I haven't been sick for a long time. Funny you brought that up. Don't worry Mom, it was only a minor concussion. I promise. It was probably 2 weeks ago. Since the AP's live right across the hall and they have zone leaders come on trade-offs, there are enough of us to go play a game of rugby. But this one day we decided to try out gridiron. I wore my glasses so I couldn't see out of my peripheral vision very well. Well, another missionary's shoulder went right into my nose and teeth and I'll stop there. But no damage. I was so blessed. Everything looks the exact same and my brain is working great! :-) But one of the AP's had to go to the doctor because he had to get his toe checked out. He had surgery on it because the nail was ingrown. So I went with him and he checked my head out. He also gave me a shot while I was there for the swine flu. I know I probably would never get the swine flu but he said he was giving it free for missionaries so I knew you would want me to get it mom. The doctor is a member. (* I thought he already HAD the swine flu!)
Work in the office has been going okay. I'm really behind on work because I still have to re-learn how to do things but it's going well. I really love being able to work with President and Sister Richards. We have one other investigator that we are working with. Her name is Leslie Hanson. Her husband is an awesome member. She was struggling with reading the Book of Mormon but SHE READ 2 CHAPTERS! We could see a difference in her after that. She went to Saturday morning session of General Conference and liked it so we continue to pray for her and hope she reads!
But another thing I forgot to tell you about last week was... MARSHALL'S BAPTISM! It was so great! We had it after church on the first Sunday of this month. It was so good. His fellowship baptized him, Brother Curtis, and then we confirmed him the same day. He spoke after his confirmation and bore his powerful testimony. One of those amazing moments. His friend who introduced him into the gospel who is now also his girlfriend spoke as well and that was very powerful. She talked about how she never thought she would have an amazing missionary experience as that. Which is the way we all think sometimes. We never think anyone we know would ever accept the gospel- never giving them the chance to make the most important decision of their life.
I love the quote: "The day you give them a Book of Mormon is the most important day of their life!!!"
Missionary work is the best ever. I love being a missionary.
I love you all and pray for you. Thank you for your prayers.
Elder Hales

Saturday, October 17, 2009


Dear Mum and Dad,
Wow, these past weeks have been draining but so amazing as well. Elder Holland's talk was phenomenal. His talks always are. I read one in a New Era about gaining confidence. It comes from Christ! Because confidence comes through worthiness, worthiness comes through Christ. But Elder Holland was the perfect amount of bold and touching. President Richards already got General Conference sent to the office so I watched it again. It inspired me so much. I want to be able to bear a testimony like that about the Book of Mormon. I really think this project Pres. Richards has us doing (highlighting in red the references to Christ) will really help me on that path.

Thank you so much for the Halloween card!! I don't think they celebrate it here. But really- Australians celebrate it everyday. :) Apparently there is a lot of witchcraft in Australia. I haven't seen too much though.

Well, there is so much amazing news to tell. First off- our mission is going through some changes. The last 2 transfers we have had around 20 missionaries come in and in 3 weeks we have 15 more coming! We are the largest mission in Australia and have the most baptisms but we need to be better. Zone conference was amazing because President Richards provided the way for us to raise the bar. We have a new mission motto: BE WORTHY OF AND EXPECT MIRACLES!! It's perfect. President Richards told us he had been working on it for several months. Then he categorized it into 3 subtitles: 1. Purity 2. Unity 3. Faith. We need more faith! I learned a lot from those conferences.
Then the blessing of General Conference. It was amazing. Priesthood was great.

Some more exciting news is the fact that Elder Nelson is coming in November to do a mission tour!!! He will be holding trainings with the missionaries and even going up north to the missionaries up there!

Even more insanely awesome news is the fact that Elder Cook of the Quorum of the 12 is coming to speak to the missionaries at the end of November. Our mission is very blessed. I know we have some great spiritual giants here.

Well I hope things are well. The work is moving forward. It's crazy how sometimes missionaries can get down about being rejected but when we take a step back and look at the growth of the church, it's phenomenal. It's because it's true.
Love you mom and dad.
Love you family.
-Elder Hales

* memo from Mom: note the new address for him.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

We got jipped! (and so did he)

Dear Family,
I'm sorry. I wrote a long letter about this amazing week but the computer I am on logged me out and I wasn't able to send it. I hate when that happens.
Well, this week is General Conference, so we have P-day today.
We had an amazing zone conference this week. I'll talk about it next week.
I love you and I love the Lord.
-Elder Hales

*note from Mom: I was surprised to hear that he would get to listen to (or see) General Conference so soon. Last time it took over two weeks to get it. So it's getting faster. And I feel bad that we didn't even have an email ready for him. Having his P-day moved up by one day left me unprepared. An empty in-box . . . . how sad is that??!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Life is good

Dear Family,

WOW!! We just had transfers and things have been crazy! I love it though! First of all- I am all alone on my job now. It was really tough at first but I'm more relaxed now. Elder Hurst, my last companion was transferred up north to Hervey Bay and he is opening that area. How cool is that! He really wanted to go up north so he was excited about that. Elder Hoskins is still my companion for 6 more weeks because he is training a new financial secretary to take his place. You would never guess who. ELDER MOONEY! He and Elder Tietjen were my favorites in the MTC. He was the last I expected to be the new office Elder. I thought I was pretty nerdy but he has no nerd in him at all. :) Two of our AP's left to train and Elder Bergquist is the new AP. He is the man. He was trained in Chermside for 6 months, left for 3 months, came back as an office elder for 6 months, left to Isle of Capri (surfers paradise) for 3 months and now he is back as AP. So he will have served in Chermside ward for about a year and a half. Insane! He went to BYU Idaho. He is a great missionary.

We had a total of 16 missionaries come in this transfer so we have a lot of areas opening up. Its been great. Our mission is getting so big!! It is so great. We have so many good missionaries. In the Year 2000 this mission had 71 baptisms. Now we are on track to get 400 this year. That is through obedience. But our new missionaries are great. I had to orientate them and then we took them to the temple. Some missionaries were having a hard time street contacting so Elder Mooney and I split up and took them out. That was great to see them lose their fear. If you have fear... it’s hard for faith to get in there.

I'm not sure if I ever told you... But Alana's baptism was great. Elder Prina told me about it. And GUESS WHAT?! ALANA GOT MARRIED TO DALLIN. Sad that Dallin won't go on a mission but that was great to hear. And if you remember me talking about Fiona- SHE GOT BAPTIZED TOO! It was funny- Elder Prina and I were about to chop her from our teaching pool and that lesson, after the opening prayer, she just says “So what do I have to do to be baptized?" So Elder Prina told me that she just got baptized and is getting married to Junior this week! I loved that area- Waterford.

I LOVE STUDY! Lately I have had a HUGE THIRST after gaining more knowledge! It was so hard for me in high school when I would let the things of the world crowd over me. I have just been feasting on Conference talks and Preach my Gospel... and the best... the Book of Mormon. President Richards is having us read the Book of Mormon by the end of the year coloring in red all references to Christ. WOW! This has opened my eyes so much. I would always hear that it’s another Testament of Christ but it really helps me see that it is a Testament of Christ. I love this Gospel. I love this church. I love that we get to hear the words of the prophets in 2 weeks!!! (little behind you guys! :)

Love you-Elder Adam Hales