Monday, May 14, 2018

The ultimate driving experience

Hi people.

Such a fantabulous week. I HAD FUN!

So ya lots happened. Where to start hmm well let's just toss it in a
blender and go random shall we.

Had interviews with President and training form the assistants. Is
anyone familiar with the BMW slogan? Well the training slogan for the
mission is "the baptismal invitation is not just about baptism; it is
not just about the invitation..... it is all about the experience."  I
dunno about you guys but it could use some more work. I prefer the BMW
line "ultimate driving experience". Anyways I've been thinking a lot
more about how much good the gospel does. For EXAMPLE, when you have a
really good job and are getting paid well, it is difficult to leave
because it is so good.

I am confident that if we work at it this is what the gospel will do
for us. It will be that really well paying job and we will enjoy the
blessings. Disclaimer: I have been in that lazy mode and the truth is,
you don't receive the blessings and it sucks. Terrible... you aren't
happy and you seem to think "the grass is greener on the other side"
but this just isn't the case. Ever.

The gospel is "the good life" experience.  Yes the truth is, it can be
a rollercoaster, but let me tell ya kiddies. As my
good friend Arnold bennet said "it is easier to go down a hill than
up, but the view is from the top". Let's get our hiking boots on and
get hiking because the gospel will enable us to climb whatever
mountain we wish to climb.


Ya enough of that so this week was fantastic. Taught some lessons, ate
some pigs feet 🐷 did some hiking; all good 😎.

Sliane, our Chinese member was on fire!! 🔥 She invited 3 then 4 then 5
friends to church!!! I liked what our ward mission leader said when I
told him we neeeded lifts to church for 9 people. He said, "That's a
good problem to have."  They all made it and they all giggled at my
horrible Chinese but we made it! Enjoyed the time. They all enjoyed it
but some didn't eat breakfast and quickly found that to be a mistake
and were quite hungry haha!

The biggest, best miracle for last -!! Andy is a mid 20 year old
guy. His girlfriend, Hannah, met the missionaries 6 months ago and was
baptised in February. He has been taught lots but never made it to
church. We popped over to visit with Hannah and Andy was pretty bold
and said, "I want to be baptised one day, 100% sure." This was a little bit of a
surprise. All good tho and we hopped on the band wagon and discussed his
desires. Long story cut short, he set a baptismal date for June 16th!! And
he came to church!!!! The other elders and member were so so excited.
They have been trying to get him there for 6 months haha! Winner
winner chicken dinner 🍴

I had a lovely Sunday. Shoutout to Jack Gore and his family for being
so awesome and hosting us for a meal and skyping the fam!! I love that
family. Just like home ❤️

Today we went to some funky looking rock things. Picture Utah

sandstone but black haha 
  
 



Elder Pilling
Sent from the land of the lads 

Monday, May 7, 2018

A Chinese miracle, an English miracle, and just some dandy sunshine

So with my emails I've been a.) slacking, b.) absent, c.) vague
D.) All of the above

Well the answer is D

Sorry yall.
But in other news I have found the jackpot of postcards. 15 pence
each!!!!!!! So hit me up asap if you want one!! It will arrive in 3
weeks because I'll probably forget one week etc etc but it'll make it
eventually.

TBH I have gotten to the point where I dunno what to tell you. I'll
just go through the days. It's all a blur.

Zone conference was good. We had a nice little testimony meeting which
I really enjoyed!

Umm we had a little service project. We woke up and it was raining
ugh. We talked with the district and agreed to go on still. Spent a
couple hours shovelling wood chips. I really enjoyed that. Then as
soon as we finished it stopped raining haha ☔️ the worst timing.

We taught some of our Chinese friends. This is the big miracle!! So
turns out 20 year olds have drama. I nearly forgot haha so all sorts
was happening. Long story short, Friday at 9 am we taught Sliane.
She's been a member 6 months now and just recently has been quite
excited about the gospel. She wants us to teach everything again and she
is treating it like school, taking notes and really focusing on it. So
that happened in the morning. Then later that night we went to a
student hangout place to teach Hailey. Well we saw Sliane again. She
was playing games with her friends. She just introduced us to 3 of her
friends then continued to invite them to church for next week.

Wow that doesn't sound very exciting. But it was I assure you. :)

Ugh I can't think of anything. I am sorry :( it's sad. I had a really
good week tho.! I had fun.

Sunday was a blast. Elder Walker and I switched comps again so they
could go to a Chinese bbq. We then cruised to the Gores (fav fam) had
a yummy BBQ, chatted and enjoyed the sunshine.  It was just wonderful. They are
great and fun and lots of jokes. I LOVED IT. I don't have any pics of
that sorry!



Left to right sorta
Elder Pitcher, me, Hailey, Sliane, Cheng Rong.
 
This picture was after a baptism for Mariama. Oh man I almost forgot about her. She is a legend. She was met like 2 years ago by a senior couple. She was taught and taught but decided now wasn't the time. She spent the last 2 years thoroughly studying the Book of Mormon. Like so deep. She knows it better than most members know it (including me). I taught her a few times.  Here's a short story. We would be teaching a principle say it's faith. She would then share a story in the Book of Mormon related to the principle. It is unreal. She was so ready. So good. So great. Absolutely awesome! So we did that on Saturday! 

Yah it was a really good week! 

We had a little boy's night out! With the zone leaders. Whipped up some pulled pork. Brownies. All good stuff. Then we proceeded to eat it on the roof of the garage at their flat. I'll attach pics, jk didn't get them yet. 

Spiritual gifts. Apply yourself to the work and Heavenly Father will bless you and strengthen you! 


Idk 
Elder Pilling :) 

Some English architecture for you   



Monday, April 30, 2018

York

Legit week peeps!

This week Elder Pilling teaching Chinese students to say "cult",
receives a Chinese name and eats 🍩 donuts

It has been radical people. Seriously great. I'll just attach some
pictures and what not so yall can see what's cooking up in YORK!!

Our week started with a little exchange with the zone leaders. It's
tricky and confusing because Elder Lyman (Elder Walker's companion and
ZL) he was Elder Pitcher's companion before I came here. They both
speak Chinese. So we did some extra splits on Tuesday so they could
take language study together and teach some Chinese people! So I spent
the morning time with Elder Walker. Then the afternoon with Elder
Lyman all good fun. Wednesday I did a little split with the elders in
the district. They are assigned as just serve elders so all they do is
service all day every day. So Wednesday we went and did bingo for a
bunch of oldies! So classic.

Anyways we went back to their flat to find this lovely lovely piece of

Canadian meat

Elder Walker. Poor guy had a gnarly migraine
 so I chilled and supervised him for awhile :) 
 
 I DID MY FIRST BENCH PRESS ya never doing that again. I think it's silly. + my arms hurt lol 

We taught some Chinese people and what not this week, met some neat people. Had a blast. Weather was less than stellar but that's OK. 

We spent some time with Hailey Tang! Another convert. She's a legend. So so very converted to the gospel. She will do great things in the gospel. We had a few lessons with her and also we were able to go with her and be there when she received her patriarchal blessing. SUPER SPECIAL I won't make many comments but seriously a highlight for sure.  

This is Sliane.  She's a recent convert. Reading some
scriptures with her. And donuts cuz it was 9 am :)   

Finally had a chance to go to church. It was good! The ward is a pretty decent size. Lots of families. Lots of YSA as well. I really enjoy going to FHE and institute.  It's good stuff. 

So because of the universities most of the people around are uni students so it's very different talking to them because many are open minded. New creative ways to contact are needed! 


Love you all!
Elder Pilling 
Sent from the land of the lads

This is the view outside our apartment. The famous 
York city walls! 




Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Transferred to York!

Some of you may watch the weather forecast for over here... Tuesday, Wednesday,
Thursday and Friday, all beautiful days. I busted the short sleeves out.  I'm working on getting my tan back because my arms haven't seen the sun since September haha

Also random note. Our flat is around the corner from a bike shop :) It's a trek dealer!! Had some beauties in there :) York is a very, very popular place. I've met more Americans this past week than the rest of my mission combined... LEAH AND BRIAN, I met a cool couple (rednecks) who live just outside Price Utah. They do all their shopping in Price and are even on YSA assignment in Price!! I can't remember their names, but still. Tender mercies :)

York is a wealthy city and very nice place to live. There's plenty of shopping and lots of places to go out for food :). This shipping container will be an outdoor/indoor food market with little hipster shops. Should be really cool when done! It's multi level all built from containers. 

Cool graffiti art. Stay tuned for pics when finished


Anyways, I'll share about my new companion, my new area, my week.  All the goods. 

May companion is Elder Alexander Pitcher from....Utah! Syracuse to be more specific. He has been out 3 months less than me.... he's special because he spent 9 weeks at the the Provo MTC learning Mandarin Chinese. 

My area is officially called York 2. There are 3 Mandarin elders. Haha it's a gooder. The area is the west side of York and goes all the way to the border of Beverley (my first area!) idk what the ward is like because we had stake conference on Sunday. The stake itself reminds me of Utah, lots of younger families :) I'm excited. We share the area with the zone leaders (Elder Walker and Elder Lyman).  Unfortunately we don't live with them... in our area we have not 1 but 2 universities! SO MANY UNIVERSITY STUDENTS. So this is where my experience runs a little dry. I have never been in a uni area so it's all so new for me!! Finding people to teach requires different approaches and new plans.  It's so exciting!! We get the city center in our area which is always pretty busy. Lots of people!! 
My week was very different.  Elder Pitcher has only been here 4 weeks. He was doing 100% Mandarin work which means he doesn't know anything about the ward or area... all of the Chinese people he was teaching have moved to the zone leaders. This all means we are pretty much whitewashing! Or area booking. It's a challenge but fun! 

Tuesday I just got settled and then we went out trying to find people. Weren't too successful. Wednesday was super roasting! We had district council, which went ok. Then we did some service in a nearby park. It was good to change things up. We did some more finding and then institute with a recent convert in the evening. It was good! There are about a dozen YSA so that was a good time! Thursday was a long day. We had a crazy meal appointment with the other elders at a member's house. There was so much going on and so much banter haha Saturday was the longest day of my life! Nice and warm but spent the entire day finding. We did 19.1 kilometres of walking 29,000 steps. We met 2 really cool people. A lass who was so very nice to us.  She grew up going to church but life got busy so she stopped going. We promised her that she will be able to recognize answers to her prayers as she meets with us. Looking forward to it. Then later that night, in the final stretch of the day we met Xander. He was like are you lds?? Next thing we were sitting in his house with his roommates running around drinking some water explaining what we do and why. Super good. We are going out for a meal with him when his Mormon friend from down south is visiting! 

 

Yous already heard about church this week. We saw President and Sister Turvey. We spent some time at a YSA activity after with some Chinese friends. Some of you may know that President Spackman has a son who lived in York for a while. So I met a lad who was bffs with them.  He went to Calgary to visit and spent ages there and even went to Waterton! Holla. He said it's his fav place in the world 🌎 

Anyways fam it's been a radical week! 

Big things are coming :) Miracles are real peeps. 
Saturday I was really worried cuz we had the entire day to find. It's tough in the mind sometimes. Well God knows us personally because I saw and met my first fly fisherman in England. He was (just practicing) but we still watched him and chatted about all sorts. He actually used to live in Keighley area. He told of some good fly shops to go to. I'm excited! 

Love,
Elder Pilling 
Sent from the land of lads 

Monday, April 16, 2018

Big transfer coming up

Clair and Willis congrats :) luv the pics and such!
Thursday we had district council and a special broadcast from
President Nelson and Elder Holland! Legendary! It was just for
missionaries at 2pm and then for members at 7. Sister Nelson's talk was really
good. Also cool grandma Garry is friends with her :) such a strong
spirit in a more relaxed setting! Now I know President Nelson is a
prophet!!

3 transfers ago I came to wonderful Bishop Auckland. It's in the middle of nowhere
with lots of buses but I have loved it! The ward has been fantastic
and I've met some amazing people!

It's really sad because they are closing the Bishop Auckland Elder's
area so there will only be sisters here now :( So there are many people and
stuff that I'll miss.

I am being moved to York 2nd Ward! One of the most well known cities
in the mission! I don't know my companion very well. But I do know
many other elders including Elder Walker from the Foothills stake!!!
He's actually in the same ward as me!! I AM BEYOND EXCITED.

I really don't have much to say at all. I'm just so excited for the
upcoming week.

Overwhelmed with excitement for Clur and Willis!! 

I'm excited but sad to leave. It's just an epic time for me. 6 months left all out!!
Here's some pics. We got matching district sunglasses. (We kept the
tags on for like 4 hours today.  Everyone we saw was like excuse me your
tags on lol) Poundland beauties



 
From right to left: Sister Thatcher, Sister Gamil, Sister Cajacson,
Sister Mortensen, Elder Graaabek, Elder Mills, Elder Selk. Front and
center is yours truly :)






Love you fam :) stay tuned for radical email next week!! 

Elder pilling :-) 
Sent from the land of the lads

Monday, April 9, 2018

A Week of Miracles

Fam Jam and others, 

Guys it's spring (nearly).  It's a tad cold and was really wet on Wednesday.. we got soaked :) all good fun

A very quick update. 

We had a little exchange on Wednesday with the Darlington elders. I spent some time with Elder Graabek good lad :) It was very very wet. We got soaked to the bone and didn't have an umbrella oops. I gambled on the weather, took a peek outside and thought, oh it's dry out no rain coat. 2 hours later. Worst rain storm they've had in years haha 

Saturday we had district council. President and Sister Turvey joined us :) We spent the time learning about faith. Specifically 1 Nephi 17. Nephi is commanded to build a ship. He goes and does. No questions. I love the scripture where he says "Arise, and get thee into the mountain. And it came to pass that I arose and went up into the mountain, and cried unto the Lord." 

Arise and he did so without a doubt. Putting all his faith and trust. Love it :) 

We had a week of miracles in the entire zone. There had been this ceiling where we haven't been able to achieve more than it. Specifically 42 baptisms in a month as a mission. And stuck at about 100 new friends as a zone. So this week we shattered that ceiling as a district. Busted out long days working hard. Found 20 total! Normal is about 5 maybe 6 on a really good week. So we really have been seeing the hastening of the work. I love it! 


Saturday I was with Elder Scheffner (Corner Canyon alumni :) ) yay we found this family!! Johnny and Charlie and their three kids.  They are so legit!! I'll snap a pic when we see them on Friday! Classic fam and we love them! So excited to help them learn. Legit miracles !!! Also ate a chicken Parmesan (native to north east England) 

Let me tell y/all God is real. God is good. I love this gospel and the way it challenges us to be better. My new favourite quote. President Ballard said this "Life can be filled with faith, joy, happiness, hope, and love when we exercise the smallest amount of real faith in Christ." 

This is so pure and so true. Faith can move mountains :)  Life is SO good! 

Also shoutout to sister Clair, love yous :) Enjoy the wedding! I'll be here in England inviting people to come unto Christ so don't you worry about me !!! 

Ok so I learned something. At the beginning of one's mission, like the other Elder Pilling, everything is new to you.  You have many new experiences so you really are motivated to share them. Then after about a year... things slow down and your mission is the only thing you can remember. It feels like home and it just feels so normal. So if you want to learn something I'll reply to your personal email within 2 weeks :)  

I am loving spring here. We are about to shed the jackets :) this was a while back but still pretty.

Love you all :) 
Elder Pilling
Sent from the land of lads 



  




Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Conference

Lots is going on!!

This past week we had zone conference. It is always good to meet as
half the mission with President and Sister Turvey. This one was different
and really quite good. I'll explain.  

I saw Elder Walker :) he's finally in the North again!!

Every 6 months the church sends out an anonymous survey we take so they can gather information about us and our well being. President Turvey recently received these results and we went over many of them. We were above average when compared to the other missions in Europe in almost all areas. We struggled with studying Preach My Gospel daily. He focused on our results from the question, "Do you feel pressure or stress when speaking to your leaders about indicator numbers?" This was significantly higher than he would like it to be. So we spent a loooong time talking about love and what we as a mission can do to feel love and unity. This has already had a really positive impact, I have been noticing more love from my leaders, there's more friendship and more trust.  So far a great success! 


We had a few beautiful days absolutely stunning !! 
Conference, let's see. Pretty incredible!! Lots of changes as you all know :) I feel very good and comfortable with the changes. I have a new found love for ministering ! I'm excited to apply myself to the work when I get home :) unfortunately for the first 15 min of the Saturday morning session it was in german and the tech people where rushing to fix it so we completely missed the solemn assembly :( sad and a bummer. My favorite talk is probably Elder Ballard or Elder Uchtdorfs, both were very excellent. Full of good doctrine. Also enjoyed Elder Holland's jokes haha cracked us up!  

As a district we finished off the last session today in the kitchen with homemade pizza. 

This upcoming week is going to be special! We are set with high faith and high expectations to find 10 new friends to teach! ( the average is 2) we are all doing it in the district so it's a go go go week. PLUS President and Sister Turvey are coming to our district council on Wednesday to see what more they can do to help us! 

I really really appreciate all your prayers and support. It helps ,I can feel them! If I don't reply to an email you send don't think he forgot about me. I read every one of them and love them! I just run out of time as we try to make memories out here rather than email all day!

Love you all 

Elder Pilling :) 

Sent from the land of lads