Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Elder Winters - May 28, 2012

Dear All,

I hope you've all had a relaxful week of summer.  And for those of you still in school, I hope you didn't have quite as a relaxful week, but rather a good balance of work and fun.  Speaking of which, that's what we at least try to make it in the mission field.  Unfortunately, some of these attempts can get out of hand, like the other day when we thought it would be fun to try out some of Taiwan's famous 臭豆腐, or stinky tofu.  As it turns out, it wasn't fun.  (I know many of you are shaking your heads right now, but you must remember that we are still nineteeen-year-old kids.)  To put it frankly, upon closer examination and putting the stuff right under your nose to get a good whiff, it smelled like the inside of an elephant cage.  After nine months of not being cleaned.  It may have tasted okay, but the smell and the tears that inevitably came out upon eating it drowned out all other bodily senses.  Moral of the story is, don't trick yourself into thinking eating stinky tofu might possibly be fun.

In other news, I have a new companion.  Elder Wang is straight off the boat from northeastern China, went to the Provo MTC for three weeks, and has now been with us for a little under a week.  He is a convert of three years and elected to go on a mission after meeting an awesome returned missionary from New Zealand.  His accent is very thick, so if I can master listening and understanding him I think I can handle pretty much anything else.  His English is really good for never living in the USA before, a result from a few foreign teachers and watching some good old American TV shows.  He's going to be an awesome missionary.  Which is awesome for me, seeing as I'll be with him for a year and a half.  So for that, all's great in the microcosm that is the California Anaheim Mission Chinese Program [(CAMCP) - alright, I confess, I just made that up three seconds ago].

In more spiritual news, I have recently been thinking about priesthood power and authority.  The greatest distinguishing factor of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is her claim to the divine authority of the priesthood.  Our church has the priesthood authority restored through heavenly messengers to the Prophet Joseph Smith.  Priesthood power, however, comes only when acting in righteousness.  I can think of  many uses of priesthood power, though none stick out more to me than raising a family.  I think of my own dad and the example he set for me and what I want to bring to other people.  That's why I'm out here, really - to help God accomplish His purposes which include happiness in the family, something that priesthood power nourishes and helps grow with acting in kindness and righteousness.  I know the message I teach is true.
You're all so great.  Have a nice week.

- Elder Winters 

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