Still in Nanaimo for now

Still in Nanaimo for now
Elder Samis on the ferry

Monday, 29 June 2015

June 29, 2015 - Area 4: Surrey East

A Heat Wave

As we move towards July, so ends another week in the field. Elder Tolman came here on Wednesday morning and we immediately got to work. The same day Elder Tolman got a pretty interesting first look at what can sometimes happen in Surrey. We were waiting for the bus and street contacting at the Guildford mall bus terminal when a man who was clearly under the influence of something approached me and got in my face a little. He wasn't angry at me but he talked about his poor posture and how he just had surgery even though I couldn't understand what he was saying. Next thing I knew he started walking backwards into the busy traffic! A lady who realized what he was doing grabbed his arm and pulled him away and he collapsed on to the side walk seemingly in lala land. Elder Lawlor called 911 and a fire engine and an ambulance came to help. We caught our bus home for lunch just after. So what happened in Surrey this week? Uh-huh, we just about saw a man get killed.

In terms of teaching, we've been once again trying to teach Levi and Sonya about the nature of God though it seems like what we're trying to do is limited because of the language barrier. They told us that they aren't interested in going to the Richmond Chinese Ward because they want to be with the Cardwells when they go to church. Elder Lawlor has been doing a great job at helping them. He used to teach English to a kindergarten class when he lived in Japan.

We also taught a guy named David yesterday and gave him a church tour. Even though he has his own unique ideas about God, he is opened  to learning more about the church. His father and his family are Mormon. Unfortunately, Jonathan has been getting really flaky again lately. Other then that there isn't too much to talk about. Stake conference was this past weekend.  Hope all is well for those of you who are out of school. Have a great first week of July!

Elder Maclean Samis     

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

June 22, 2015 - Area 4: Surrey East

Return of the Tri

Happy Fathers Day and Summer Solstice! The weather is hot and sunny and the days are longer then ever. So begins another week in Surrey and my 17th month as a missionary is in the books. I'm getting old now and that means more pressure is on the way as I reach towards the end of it all. Life will never be the same afterward.
Transfers just passed and Elder Lawlor will be staying in Surrey East but we have another third Elder joining us. His name is Elder Tollman and he's half Chinese. I don't know a lot about him but we talked to him on the phone the other day and he seems like a cool guy. He's been out almost as long as I have so there will be plenty on experience between the 3 of us. As difficult as the last transfer was, we're getting ready to rock and roll for the next one!
In other interesting news Elder Bonfield has been moved to Nanaimo North to be a zone leader! He's really excited to go back to the island. I hope to be able to serve around him again some time.
We've taught a few more lessons this week. On Friday Elder Hall and I went on an exchange, got lost a bit because I still don't know the transit routes that well, but we taught Jonathan. Just after our lesson with him about the Word of Wisdom we went to a nearby park where the church had a BBQ from 5:00 - 8:00 pm! Elder Lawlor and I are both broke and haven't been able to eat a whole lot so we ate so much there we were pretty much sick after.
Levi and Sonya were taught by Elder Lawlor and Elder Hay yesterday while I was placed with
Elder Lau. We met this really nice Christian guy named Sam who we sort of had a well- lets call it a debate about our beliefs on the Restoration. Sam told me that he could tell that I was rather unhappy that what I was trying to tell him wasn't being understood so I got rather humbled by that. He can't say that he believes that Joseph Smith was a prophet but he noticed that I was struggling and prayed for me after the discussion. It's so nice to see people like that forgive you even when they're not from your faith. I learned a valuable lesson to be bold but not overbearing and sore when people don't agree with you.
Well this is all there is to say I guess. I'm grateful for my Father hear on the earth and for his patience in putting up with us for all these years. I know little about being a Father, but I know its a sacred responsibility in our Heavenly Father's plan. I love him so much as well. May we all respect and honor our Fathers throughout our lives. I understand that there are some who were aware of my hard circumstances over the past few weeks that have been fasting and praying hard for me. Thank you. I love you all the more for that as well. Enjoy the start of summer!
Elder Samis 

Friday, 19 June 2015

June 15, 2015 - 4th Area: Surrey East

Walking ... and Walking

Its another beautiful day in Surrey, BC. Its been a pretty good week but also another sore one. Sunday evenings and bus schedules are 2 things that shouldn't go together. Last night we had to walk about 5 km to our house all the way from Guildford mall, all because our bus stopped running. The last bus that takes us home on Sunday comes at 6:45 pm so I'm not sure what we'll be able to do each Sunday evening except tracting around our place.We didn't get home until 9:45 pm.

We didn't have very many lessons this week. Since Keara doesn't have a phone, we decided to give her information to the sisters so we don't just have to drop in on her and set tentative appointments without a male member. We had a delicious Fijian styled crab dinner at the Cardwell's home on Thursday and taught Levi and Sonya the plan of salvation in their home afterwards. They couldn't come to church because they have been touring around Banff. We didn't teach Jonathan this week but the good news is he came to church and seems to be doing okay.

What else did we do? Walked a lot. All over the place. The weather hasn't been quite as hot as it was last week, fortunately. We've been blessed with some more solid potentials and some very kind people that have given us some kind gestures. A glass of water for instance. Those sure helped! I wish there was more to tell you but there isn't really. Uh... I'm more tired? That's all. Same old same old minus our car. Have a great week everyone! Summers on the way.

Elder Maclean Samis  

Monday, 8 June 2015

June 8, 2015 - Area 4: Surrey East

The Breath of Life

I'm tired. If only I could leave this week's message at that but I can't because I love you guys.

It's been a better week then last, results wise. Elder Lawlor and I went on an exchange with the assistants on Tuesday. Elder Lawlor went with Elder Lewis and I was placed with one of my old MTC buddies, Elder Cottingham. I had a great trip with him. We've both noticed immense changes in each other since that time over 16 months ago when we were in the MTC together.  Gosh, we've been out that long? We found and dropped by a few former investigators. Elder Cottingham being the monster of a missionary that he is managed to find a couple of YSA people and set baptismal dates with them almost as soon as he met them! He sent there info to the YSA Langley ward Elders who will be teaching them.

What happened the next day? Another exchange - this time with the zone leaders. I went to Delta with Elder Hall and we saw some good success there. We talked to a really cool Vietnamese lady named Jeana who was really into the idea of the Book of Mormon. Her English was pretty much perfect. She agreed to read it and she has a return appointment for next week. Elder Lawlor and Elder Green found a miracle of a man named Jonathan who we saw the very next day. We taught him at the church employment center since he's been looking for work. We taught him about baptism along with the word of wisdom and set a baptismal date for July 7th!    

Elder Lewis and Elder Lawlor taught Levi, the man who came to church with the Cardwell family, and his wife Sonya. Both of them are from Taiwan and will only be in Canada for another 6 months so it's likely they will be passed on to the Chinese Missionaries in Richmond. Elder Lawlor knows how to write Mandarin so he did most of the teaching with characters on a piece of paper defining words. They understood baptism and they have a date for July 7th!

Last Saturday Elder Lawlor and I found a young woman named Keara while tracting. She's been a strict atheist much of her life and only went to a church with her friend back when she was younger. When Elder Green and Elder Lawlor taught her on the exchange she seemed to feel the spirit quite strongly.    

Towards the end, our week became exceedingly sore. Our car was taken away from us on Wednesday since there are some missionaries in Kelowna that need a car real bad so now we're on transit. Our bus passes costed a whopping 91 dollars and thank goodness the church filled our cards and allowed us to purchase them. So now we're off in the scorching heat sweating like crazy doing missionary work. It's been quite the experience really. It can only get better though as we now have a pretty good looking teaching pool mainly a result of our exchanges which proved to be our little "breath of life." Perhaps the storm of struggle is finally lifting and now we can press forward. Have an awesome week!

Elder Maclean Samis     

Monday, 1 June 2015

June 1, 2015 - Area 4: Surrey East

The Big Party

So begins another week of what's been a challenging transfer in Surrey. The short sum of the week involves a lot of personal finding throughout the week. Our legs and feet have become exceedingly sore. We've gone everywhere from Surrey Central to Gilford Mall, to the darker side of town. Once again, we have found a few potentials just as we did last week, none of them which turned out.   

On Friday morning we taught Betty but she told us that her husband is apparently not very pleased with our meetings with her. She says she knows that the Book of Mormon is true and says that she will have to talk to her husband about the meetings and we all agreed to pray for him and her. 

The main event that took place that should be noted is the cancer fundraising party the relief society threw on Saturday. We spent an hour helping to decorate and get the tables ready. The next day it started at 1:00 pm and we prepared and served the food for a few hours with a few of the Langley YSA members. The Surrey West Elders were there and it was pretty cool seeing Elder Bonfield (who used to manage the kitchen of a restaurant in Ontario) with his kitchen face on. It was a great event to be a part of. The party raised about $2300! We came back later the same night and ate dinner and took home some much needed leftovers. We finally got our debit cards filled on Friday which was also very welcoming since we had to live on practically noodles, cereal, and peanut butter toast for the 3 days before. 

On Sunday we had a Korean guy named Levi show up at church with Brother and Sister Cardwell. Its his first time going to a church and he seemed to really like it. That was the only investigator we found this week. Jim never showed up for his appointment on Sunday after church and we haven't heard from him since.  

Hope your enjoying this first day of June. It's mostly cloudy here right now but still around 20 degrees. A certain lady we talked to on the street the other day told us that 2015 will likely be the hottest year the province has seen in a long time. Hopefully I don't move to Osoyoos this summer!

Elder Maclean Samis