Holy cow it's p-day again. That was possibly the fastest week ever. maybe it's because i don't know what's going on half the time, or maybe it's because i love it here, but time is going way too fast for comfort. We live about a 2 minute walk from the train station and the shops. our address is 15/21 West street, Hurstville if you want to google maps it. but i dont think i'll get letters much faster if you send them to my flat because we are at the mission office a couple times a week. once for DTM, once for MCM, and once for church. (the mission office is part of the mortdale stake centre) so there isn't much waiting for mail. But we live so close to the shops and train station that if ever we have a few extra minutes we go and walk around and talk to people. We have a car, but we only use it when we're going to really far places that are too hard to get to by train. so we walk a lot, and i am exhausted every night. physically and mentally. My understanding comes and goes. it depends on the conversation, but elder ward is really good with listening so we get by.
Matt's baptism was yesterday and it was awesome. they do baptisms after church here and then he'll be confirmed next sunday. President and Sister Back came and so i had to sit at the back with them and translate for them. hahaha it was rough, especially since i couldn't hear very well, but it worked out okay. haha and then i had to give the closing prayer and i was so nervous because i've never prayed in chinese in front of that many people so i just kept it really simple and short, and when i said amen, our branch president jumped up all excited and started yelling chinese at me! haha i couldn't understand most of what he said because i was caught so off guard, but he was smiling and i caught a hen hao in there somewhere so i'm assuming it was a good thing. haha i love learning chinese because almost all chinese people are so happy you're learning their language that they will just give you compliment after compliment even if your chinese is terrible. Church is actually really interesting, because it's meant to be a cantonese branch, and it always has been, but the past couple years it has kindof been changing and now there's a lot of people that only speak mandarin that come. Most people can speak or at least understand both, but there's a few that can't, especially the investigators. so if the person speaking is speaking cantonese, they have someone translating into mandarin and the other way around. and there's always someone translating into english because we have an indian man and an aussie bloke who both dont speak any chinese, but they are married to chinese girls so they come to our branch. haha its cool. so i listen to most of sacrament through an earpiece. yesterday there was 1 talk in cantonese, 1 talk in english, the sacrament prayers were both in mandarin, and the hymns were a combination of all three at once. haha it's exciting. apparently they're planning on splitting it soon into a cantonese and a mandarin branch. i think that would be good. people need to hear the gospel in their own tongue.
Matt is doing really well and we're meeting up with him tonight. We have another guy on date for this coming sunday, but i haven't met him yet because we haven't been able to meet up with him so it might have to get pushed back. His name is mr. Xu. Other than that we have quite a few people we meet with. We teach a woman named Jill english. she's from taiwan and she's hilarious. not interested in learning about the gospel, but really cool. Then we meet with a guy named Tom who we teach english for half an hour and then teach him the gospel for half an hour. he's cool and we spent pretty much the whole half hour teaching him how to pronounce St. Patrick's day. haha it was great. We talked to these two girls on the street earlier this week and we met with one of them, Carol, on saturday. and the other one, Georgina, on sunday. Georgina lives in Chatswood, which is ages away so it's harder to meet with her, but carol lives here in hurstville so it's not as difficult. They are both going to university right now. We pretty much just taught about God and who he is with both of them. We meet with Jimmy, who is a malaysian gangster. haha he's the man. he took us to get smoothies and pulled a wad of fifties out of his pocket to pay for them.... hahah he's a good guy. we have mr Chan who is a very funny guy. He and his wife are investigating and he seems pretty interested. So i'll keep yous in the loop on all of them. Its pretty much china town here in hurstville so we just walk around and talk to all the chinese people. and if we're not doin that, then we're driving all over the sydney suburbs, visiting people. This thursday we are having MCM at our branch mission leader's house and he apparently lives really close to the harbor so that should be exciting. And that is why everyone wishes they were cool enough to be in Bankstown 3rd. haha I love it!
Have a wonderful week! hope sarah and john are loving having a newborn again. I'm scared at how fast time is moving right now. I've heard rumor of them doing a group going home august 11th so we'll see if that's really happening or not. Love you all! I may not be able to understand a lot of what's going on around me, but i can understand my feelings and i can feel the same spirit. The church is true. it really is. Talk to you next week! love you and im praying for yous!
ps i got a new suit last week and it's pretty sweet. but i need to get it fitted now so i don't have any pictures yet...