Friday, July 25, 2014
167 years ago, on July 21st, the first pioneers arrived in Salt Lake Valley! To celebrate Pioneer Day, we got to watch the parade that goes through downtown Salt Lake City. It was a lot of fun. I can’t believe just a year ago, it was only day 2 of my mission. Time flies! Last year, President Uchtdorf was in the parade. This year, it was President Monson! I have seen him before at General Conference and at the Christmas concert, but this time, I was much closer to him. I am so lucky to serve here! I am just so grateful for all the sacrifices those early members of the Church made. Before my mission, I didn’t really care about pioneer stories but now that I serve at Temple Square and share pioneer stories daily, I have grown a deeper appreciation and love for them. Without them, I wouldn’t be here today, and my family in Taiwan would have never received the gospel back in the 1960s. They truly did pave the way so that thousands more could have the gospel in their lives. Although not all members have pioneer ancestors, I know that we have all been impacted by them in some way. Actually, we are our own pioneers, too! I know my grandparents were pioneers and some of the very first members of the Church in Taiwan. In fact, on my mission, I have often thought of my grandpa who was the first to join the Church in my dad’s family. I never knew him because he passed away when I was only 3 months old, but I am so grateful that he accepted the missionaries’ invitation to learn about the gospel because the gospel has changed my life and my family. I am grateful for those early missionaries who were willing to sacrifice 3 years (back then it was 3 years) to share the gospel with others. My current mission president served 3 years himself in the Taiwan Gaoxiong mission (maybe it was Taichung, can’t remember). Anyways, we can see that these early members of the Church impacted many, many lives. But we can also pave the way for those now and those in the future. We can be our own pioneers! So stop and think to yourself, “What do I want my future descendants to think of me?”
This week, I decided to keep track of how many Chinese people I take on tours. From Monday until today, I have taken 166 Chinese people on a tour already. This isn’t even a full week yet! Ever since I found out how many Chinese people come to Temple Square, I was curious to see how many Chinese people I take around in a week. Well, out of those 166 people, only 3 people referred themselves. It reminds me the scriptures, “Many are called but few are chosen….” Anyways this week, I had a really cool experience that proves to me that God truly does have a plan. Yesterday, we got a text about a Mandarin group wanting a tour. We called in to say we would take it and they said it was still available, so we started walking over. When we got there, they said that another sister had already picked them up and that there were no more tours. A couple hours later, we went to take a Mandarin tour that was texted out. Long story short, it was the same group of Chinese people that we were supposed to take around earlier but was taken by other sisters. Well, guess where these 2 girls are currently staying? In Irvine, my city! How crazy is that!? They originally said they had 30 minutes but we ended up spending almost an hour and a half with them. I taught them the Restoration and at the end, they both referred themselves and took a copy of the Book of Mormon. They didn’t refer to the first Chinese sisters that took them around, but I know that Heavenly Father really did want us to meet each other. I meet plenty of people from California but rarely are they from Irvine or staying in Irvine. This experience really showed me that God really does have a plan and that He does place specific people in our paths.
Well that’s about all that I have time for this week. But I just wanted to send a quick shout out to the Irvine Stake Young Women’s. I got a bunch of letters from them this last week! They were at Girls’ Camp and they all wrote me such sweet notes! Thank you! Anyways, I hope you all have a great week! I love you guys.
Sister Olivia Ying
P.S. We have been teaching a Chinese man over the phone who came to Temple Square and he lives in Washington now. We finally got him local missionaries this past week. Turns out these elders live in the same apartment complex as our investigator. Crazy huh?
2014年 7月 25日，星期五