Hello from Sydney!

Hello from Sydney!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Zhong Qiu Jie Kuai Le! (Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!)

A moon cake and a lantern
I wish this computer typed in Chinese...but Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!! One of the members gave me YueBing and I was suuuuuuper happy! :)

It was cold this week....but today was nice and warm! We did a personal safety class with one of the members! That was heaps fun! Then we walked part of the Harbour Bridge with some of the other missionaries! It was beautiful!! I feel so blessed to be in such a beautiful city! 

View from Harbour Bridge
I love being with Sister Luo!

This week has been great! I love being with Sister Luo! We had soooo many miracles! On Wednesday, we went soap boxing with our zone and the new arrival missionaries (who came straight from the airport). It was a very empowering spiritual experience. Standing on a crate and bearing testimony to people on the street sounds a little crazy...but I realised that I love this Gospel so much and I just want everyone to have the opportunity to learn and accept it so that they can have eternal life. It was nice hearing my testimony out loud, and truly feeling that I am here to serve the Lord. The spirit confirmed to me that this was all true and that I'm not wasting my time. 

As Elder Jordan (our new district leader) was soapboxing, a young Chinese girl stopped to watch and Sister Luo immediately went to her. Her name is Amelia and she is from China. She is so keen to learn and we were able to set a baptismal date with her for Oct 17! She came with us to Jin's baptism on Saturday and she just felt the spirit so strong. That was really neat. 
We also met with a few other new investigators, including Julie from Korea! She reminds me a lot of Yan Lin since she is also young and is a free thinker. However, she really wants to know if the message of the Restoration is true. We had a very brief but powerful lesson with her and she also accepted the invitation to be baptised! 

Leon is still progressing. Everytime we meet with him, I learn so much from the way he understands the Gospel. It is so obvious that the spirit is teaching him and helping him understand, and he sees it in a way that helps us learn and grow. For example, we asked him why he thinks God gave us commandments. The answer I thought of was to protect us and keep us safe. His answer was to help us become perfect like God and help us know how to live our lives because we are not perfect. I thought that was so cool! 

I have no doubt that Heavenly Father is preparing His children all over to receive the Gospel. Everything really does happen for a reason, and it's all part of God's great plan for us. I'm grateful for the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation and that everyone will have the opportunity to receive the blessings of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. Everyone has the chance to have eternal life with our Father in Heaven. How cool is that?!?!

Sister Luo, Sister Nelson, and I were together until Thursday, when Sister Munoa came! We know some of the same people, it's kind of crazy! We have 3 awesome new missionaries in our district. They are truly prepared to be here and miracles are already happening. They are great examples and are going to really bring miracles into this part of the Lord's vineyard. All 3 also went to BYU, so that makes them even cooler :P Also, my Chinese is slowly but surely growing and improving. Sister Luo is so patient with me. She's awesome! We have so much fun together and she's such a great example to me. 

This week is going to be great :) We're excited!!

Love you all heaps,
Sister Lew

Wednesday, September 23, 2015


Ice cream on a spring day in Manly

This week has been one of much learning. It has been a roller coaster of emotions. 

First off, MIRACLES! Leon has a baptismal date!It has been such a privilege to see how much he has grown. His faith is increasing every day and he has such a great desire to learn more truth. He hungers for that truth. We prayerfully invited him to be baptised, and he accepted (after many many invitations). He is preparing to be baptised on the 17th of October, so please pray for him! He's probably my first investigator that asks REALLY good questions....you can just tell he's prepared. 

We met with Viviana and she is awesome! We fasted with her and she had a great experience. She's keeping all of her commitments and she just feels the spirit so much more in her life as she's been living the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We had 3 other Spanish speakers in the lesson...so everyone was speaking Spanish but me. It was pretty funny.
With Guilia
We went on trade-offs with the Manly sisters. Manly is soooo beautiful!! I was with Sister Toluta'u. She is amazing! Definitely on fire and I just loved how she was constantly bearing her testimony. 

With Sister Toluta'u

Sister Valdes and I saw so many miracles. As I keep mentioning, she is the most consecrated missionary I know. I'm so grateful for her diligence and obedience. It has definitely motivated me to do much much better and become a true disciple of Jesus Christ. I can honestly say that we really did our best this past transfer. We gave it our all. Although we were always exhausted, we knew that we were doing what the Lord needed us to do. We always felt a sense of accomplishment knowing that we were able to assist in the work of salvation. 
She truly is such a great example and I am eternally blessed to have served with her. Not only were we companions, but we became best friends.
My last goodbye with Sister Valdes
Transfer calls came around and I am now with Sister Luo from Taiwan! She is so lovely! We are so excited to smash the city and learn Chinese. Yay! 
Sister Luo is my new companion!
There were quite a few changes in our district, but I am excited for this transfer! We have 3 missionaries coming into the city and our new Zone Leader is Elder Dean, who served in the city with me a year ago! Lots and lots of miracles are awaiting! :) 

Elders Wilde, Despain and Orr
We also had Zone Conference! That was really good! I LOVE LOVE LOVE President and Sister Checketts. We really focused on 'listening to the Spirit', which is something I am working hard to improve. The Spirit is the true teacher in this work. Without it, being a missionary is useless. I am so grateful for the knowledge and gift of the Holy Ghost. It has made all the difference in my life and I am striving to be worthy of it at all times. 

Lately, negativity has been creeping into my thoughts and emotions, to the point where I sometimes feel unable to feel the spirit. It is scary and it's dark...Yesterday, we had a lesson with a member and we read in Alma 52. We talked about how we have the power to overcome and conquer Satan and that through the Atonement, we can do all things. It's so incredibly true, and I felt a literal weight being lifted from my shoulders as the spirit testified to me that as long as I rely on my faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, everything will be okay. It was just amazing to feel the power of the Atonement. Christ truly did suffer, bleed, and die for us. Not just for our sins, but for our weaknesses, suffering, and trials. The Atonement is so beautiful. I am eternally grateful for my Saviour.

This ties into the theme of our sacrament meeting yesterday, which was the Restoration. We have the fullness of this knowledge of the Atonement because of the Restoration. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only true church on the Earth. I know that it has been restored to its former glory through the prophet, Joseph Smith. I know that Joseph Smith did see God, the Father, and His son, Jesus Christ. I know that it is the same church that Christ established when He was on the Earth. "Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of Heaven". One of the elders was sharing how no sacrifice is too big or too much for the Lord's work. I reflected back on all of the sacrifices that were made so that we could have the Gospel. I also think of all the sacrifices that were made so that I can be here to represent Jesus Christ and preach His gospel. There truly is no sacrifice that is too great for this marvelous work. 
I know that the Priesthood power has been restored and that it is the power of God. It is so beautiful and I am so blessed to have the Priesthood in my home. I know that it truly does bless families. I pray that every priesthood holder is worthy of it and prepared to use it in time of need. 
The Book of Mormon is true. It is the word of God, and as we read it, we will come to know more of our Saviour. President Thomas Monson is the prophet today, and I am so grateful that we have the privilege of listening to him in just a few weeks! God is our Father in Heaven and His son Jesus Christ truly is our Saviour and Redeemer. I am grateful for this opportunity I have to serve my Heavenly Father and preach His restored gospel to the people of Sydney. It is the greatest blessing and privilege. 

I love this Gospel and I love this work!

Have a great week! Love you all heaps!

Sister Lew

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Letter from September 15, 2015

House of the Lord
Holiness to the Lord

I got to go to the Temple today for the first time since December 2014! It was so amazing and beautiful. I was soooooo happy! 

This past week has been full on! I definitely saw the adversary working HARD against me. Temptation, laziness, boredom, uni, family, friends, and more all started attacking me. It was so frustrating. I'm so grateful to be with Sister Valdes. I love having a companion I can love and trust. I can be open with her and she's helped me push through it and enjoy the work. She is a prime example of a 'consecrated missionary'. I hope to become like her within the next 3 months. Eye single to the glory of God and serving with all of my heart might mind and strength. There's nothing that takes her away from this work. It's quite impressive. 
With Sister Valdes at the Opera House

P-day fun with Sister Valdes
I got to serve with the Chinese sisters last week on trade-offs! I went to Ryde and Greenwich (they actually live in the same flat) and I was with Sister Yu and Sister Luo. Both are such amazing sisters!! They have such a great spirit about the work. It's really exciting! LOOOOVEEEE THEM!
I learned so much Chinese as well...I'm becoming more comfortable speaking it. I have the weirdest phobia of speaking Chinese with white people that speak it as well. I choke and can't speak. It's actually quite sad. But I'm perfectly fine when it comes to the natives. Weird…
With the Mandarin speaking sisters
We have some great investigators who are progressing really well! We had 6 at church on Sunday!!!
Although no one is quite ready to accept baptism yet, they all have a great desire and hunger to learn more. They're all keeping their commitments! Especially reading the Book of Mormon. We have an investigator who just loves the Book of Mormon. It's great to see how they're really trying to study and ponder it to know if it's true. 
With Michelle
I've been able to gain a stronger testimony of the Book of Mormon this week as well. I've made more of an effort to study it with my PMG in my personal study. There was one day where I studied 'faith' in PMG and in Alma 32. Out of the many many times I've read that chapter, only then did it really mean something to me and I felt like I was truly learning. 

Being a missionary is so beautiful. The time really goes by so fast and every moment is so incredibly precious. Being with Sister Valdes has helped me see how important the Lord's time is and that there is not a second to waste. I'm so grateful for the privilege I have to serve my Heavenly Father. Despite the rejection (oh yeah...we got told to Go Away pretty harshly this week...), stress, aching bodies, and emotional roller coaster of it all, it is the best thing I can be doing right now. I love being in a ward where I can see people grow in the Gospel and support each other in every step of the way. 

This is my last week with Sister Valdes and Elder Despain! So we're going to make the most of it and see miracles :)

Love you all heaps!
Have a great week!

Sister Lew

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Forever Finding - September 7, 2015

Miracles...we had 9 new investigators this week!!! 
We literally talked to everyone we possibly could this week, wasting no time at all. It was so great! Although there were times where I was so tired or just simply didn't feel like talking to anyone. We saw the immediate blessings that came from just approaching people and inviting them to come unto Christ. Considering there's millions of people here, we got many rejections. But that was okay! We feel good knowing we did what we could and planted seeds. Lots and lots of planting. 

We have such great investigators! 
Viviana is such a miracle! I don't know if I wrote about her or not...but she just feels so right with everything that the Spirit is teaching her. She wants to investigate more before she makes any big decisions, but she feels that this is the right path for her. 
Leon was able to come to church and the RC fireside last night! That was really neat. He just wants to learn and learn so that he can feel his faith.
Sally has amazing questions and is so keen on figuring out what God wants for her. 
and many more....

With everyone, we've been able to see how much they can feel the Spirit in their lives. It's BEAUTIFUL. 
With Nora

Another miracle, Baberly and Rose went to the Temple on Saturday! I've learned that one of the most important things to help recent converts stay active is to get them to the Temple soon and then have them go as often as possible!

Sunday was really good. Very powerful testimonies, especially on the Atonement. I often find myself forgetting to utilize the Atonement in EVERY aspect of my life. Yes, I'm prideful. Yes, I'm self-centered. and yes, I sometimes forget to put Heavenly Father's will ahead of my own, but I know that the Atonement can help me overcome all of these weaknesses...even the ones that hold me back from using it! 
Hendersons and Aslpulnds... the senior couples..

Breaking the fast
We have had a really good week overall. I love being back in the city! and I love the sisters I serve with. We went on exchanges with the other city sisters, Sister Prabang and Sister Nelson. We have so much fun together. We're just one big family :) and we all like to eat. It's all about the food; and the Spirit of course. 
With Sister Prabang and Sister Nelson

Sister Prabang
Sister Prabang and I were able to see miracles with the appointments we had. It was a pretty full-on day, but a good one nonetheless. 
Sister Valdes and I are going to make the most of what we have during these next two weeks. It's really sad to see so many great missionaries going home soon, especially all the ones I'm super close with, but it's so cool to see their bright futures because of their dedication to the Lord's work. 
Stuffed French Toast with Sister Valdes

Went on "splits" with Sister Nelson
Today for P-day, we're going to Coogee beach as a zone for a sausage sizzle :) yayyyyy

I love you all, have a fabulous week!
Sister Lew