Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The Rains Came Down and The Floods Came Up... (Aug 18th)


Well, this past week has been amazing. As you all know transfers happened last Wednesday and I am staying here with Elder Hosman for ANOTHER transfer... that's THREE TRANSFERS!!! Gosh does time fly by when you're doing the Lord's work.

Since that was the case, we had a new GOLDEN Elder (Aka an elder fresh out of the MTC) fly down on Thursday. Elder Clark, the missionary who lives in Burnie, which is about a two hour drive north west from Launceston, had to stay with us for the week. He added a third witness to our efforts as we went out doing our labors. We taught an investigator we have named Dan Han. He is from China and we sat down with him on Tuesday and talked about God, Jesus Christ, and why Christ came down to earth.

Since we are all still fairly young in our missions (4 months for Elder Clark and me, and 8 months for Elder Hosman) we are stilling learning how to teach more effectively and clearly. Dan doesn't have much of a religious background for obvious reasons so teaching him the simple truths about Jesus Christ is very new to me. We, however, were able to teach him about Jesus Christ and he accepted our invitation to be baptized! WOOHOO!!!!

The amazing miracle that happened was (other than his desire to be baptized) that he told us that Christians have heaps of "rules" that he doesn't always want to follow. He says he likes most of them but he also likes to be able to go out and drink alcohol with his friends on occasion. That left a perfect opportunity to talk to him about why God gives us commandments, and how they aren't to restrict us but really to HELP MAKE AND KEEP US HAPPY.
I want to stress this fact. You hear time and time again about all the commandments of God. Of course there are the standard Ten Commandments that are mentioned in the Bible and by Abindi in the Book of Mormon, but because of the restoration we have so many more promises from God and commandments to follow to keep us safe! BE OBEDIENT. It brings blessings.

(If you haven't noticed... I talk about obedience heaps. That's because blessings are given ONLY upon obedience to the commandment associated with the blessing. Simple enough aye?)

Anyway, this week has been amazing. We've had miracles, answers to prayers, and a continued assurance that we are striving to move the work forward. We have two supportive and loving wards that truly help and sustain us as their missionaries and have a desire to be involved. There was an awesome experience that happened, actually, a few weeks ago that just shows how we all are truly God's children and how EVERYONE is preparing to receive the gospel of Jesus Christ.

My companion and I were teaching a short lesson after a tea appointment to one of my favorite families. They are the Wheeler family! We gathered around in their living room and taught about being easily guided and how when we are easily guided God can bless us more because we are more able to recognize God in our lives.

After, we asked if anyone thought of a name of a person that could benefit from hearing about the Message of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. Emily, the middle child of the family, had her boyfriend over for tea and he sat in on the lesson. He is not a member of the church, but when we asked him he sat there for a second and just stared at the ground. Then, after a little moment of silence he looked up at us and said "My auntie really could use this in her life."

We were amazed... that he was able to think of someone that HE, a non member, knew could use the unique and priceless message we have to share.

It works. We are all able and capable of furthering the work. So... I would like to invite all of you to help further the work this week by....

HELPING SOMEONE ELSE OUT!  If they are struggling with yard work, help em. If they are sad, give them a smile and a hug. If they just need someone to talk to, talk to them.

This work is much more than sitting down and shoving the Book of Mormon down someone's throat. It's not that at all. It's getting to know the people. Taking time to truly act as Christ did during His earthly ministry, and being an example of the believers. When we take the time to express sincere love to those around us, I promise promise promise that you will see the work go forward, according to God's time table.

Well, that's about it. This week should be awesome! Love you all and Miss you all heaps!

With Love,
Elder Sargeant

Saturday, August 17, 2013

TRANSFERS!!?!?!?!?!?!? (Aug 11)

G'day all,

Well that time has arrived... Will I stay? Will I go?! WHO KNOWS?!?!

Well, we received our answer on Friday night and....



I would not want to leave this place at all. The members here are amazing. The work is progressing slowly but surely, and there is still much to learn as a missionary here. I have the same companion which is a blessing! I know that we can learn heaps from each other this transfer and grow together in our capacities as teachers and representatives of Jesus Christ and His work.

This week has been filled with heaps and heaps of rain. August is the month that is the most dreary here. Since it's the middle of Winter and there is no snow, we simply get HEAPS of howling wind at night time and cold rain mixed with arctic sea breeze. That, let me tell you, chills you to the bone.

However, despite the elements we have been so blessed. The week started out a bit slow. We were able to teach a few more lessons to some invesigators that we have recently found. There are 3 Chinese guys we are teaching named.....

Dan Han
Danny (something crazy)
and ... Victor.

They all don't really have solid backgrounds in Christ or religion because they are from China. It's such a wonderful experience learning how to teach someone in a simple manner. They are all so attentive to our discussions, and I pray that we will be able to bring them closer to Jesus Christ as we strive to allow the Spirit to tesitfy to them through us.

Also, we have been blessed with amazing memebers who want NOTHING MORE THAN TO HELP!
So, story time.

We teach these lessons called 30-minute programs, where we promise that the name of a person they know will come to their mind as we share out message with them. That promise is so true, and being able to say it is so humbling and inspiring at the power that the Spirit has. We taught 7 of these lessons and received 14 Member Referrals!! The Best part is they all committed to getting them more involved in the gospel, activities, and inviting them for tea and Church! Members are the key in this work.... Never forget how important you are. I recently heard a talk from the October General conference that mentioned if we just act like honey bees and do OUR  little part, that the entire honey comb becomes beautiful and full.

That is exactly what Heavenly Father Needs YOU all to do! Get involved and plant those seeds. Drink a bottle of BOLD SAUCE and invite your friends to dinner (tea) or activities at church. I promise you that you'll find no greater happiness than performing what our loving Heavenly Father wants and directs us to do. He wants us all to shine our lights and not hide it under a bushel.

This week was also inspiring in that we were able to take a day to go down to the East Coast of Tassie!

(On a side note.. EAST COASTS ARE THE BEST, but nothing beats the NEW HAMPSHIRE EAST COAST!)

We traveled about 3 hours east towards two towns called St Marys and St. Helens. St. Marys enstilled a dream in our minds of starting a branch there. The people waved at us, talked to us, and even gave us free food....and they had never even SEEN missionaries before! They are all so prepared for the spiritual nourishment that we all NEED so dearly in our lives. I'll send some photos NOw.

I have 5 minutes left so I must cut this email short.

The work is true. Never forget that. I pray for you all every day and I'm so grateful for an opportunity to get to have so many people in my life to allow me to grow, and feel the love that our Heavenly Father wants us to feel. You all make such a big difference in my life. Thank you!

With Love

Elder Sargeant

Tempest Tossed (Aug 4)


This week has been a bit of a struggle for proselyting efforts. I hate to make excuses, however we were used a abused by the Senior Couple from Deloraine, Tasmania in the moving of old furniture to our new flat in different area. We also, had our flat flooded! I was downstairs making eggs for brekkie (as they call it down here) and my companion came running down stairs asking if the flat was burning down. I was a bit shocked and told him no! He went back upstairs to find that the washing machine motor had been fried basically and that it had overflowed and started to flood our bathroom floor and go into the kitchen downstairs. The lights shorted out, the washing machine broke, and we had a lot of cleaning to do. Needless to say, it was a misfortune event that caused a lot of work to be done. However it is DONE and now we can get to work!!

We had the opportunity to teach a lady named Monica this week from Mexico! Her life has been insane... She and her husband lived in Tia Juana Mexico and they literally had to run for their lives from people that were being ransomed off by them. They are both plastic surgeons and they were being threatened. They came here to Australia to get away with nothing but a baby in here arms, the clothes on their backs, and a baby on the way.

Anyway, it was an amazing lesson learning about why she wants to believe in God, and how she hopes that there is a God. We testified of the truth of a loving Heavenly Father, and she invited us back! She is going to read the Book of Mormon to help her come closer to God and also to help her English. She also promised to teach us Spanish since we are teaching her English! Look out mum, I'm going to come home with a new language learned eh! It'll be sweet as. I reckon not many people in Aussie learn Spanish because not many Hispanic people come here! It's mainly Asian, Sudanese, Islanders, and that sort.

Anyway, I wish to quote Elder Gish, my brother Sam, who is serving in Taiwan.

He Said "My mom (that amazing angel!) sent me a letter recently that touched on
the importance of obedience. Let me tell you future missionaries,
young missionaries, about to go home missionaries...even return
missionaries...obedience is key and is SO important! I can honestly
say that when I am obedient I am happy, when I am not obedient I am
sad...it really is just that simple..would you rather be happy or sad.
:) Be obedient and remember to shine bright! :)"

I want to also reiterate what he said. OBEDIENCE TO LAW IS LIBERTY! Or.... obedience is freedom. Just be obedient and all will work out. When it's hard, just be more obedient. That's when the happiness comes.

This is a bit short and I apologize for that. Next week will be better!!

Love you all!!!

And Mum... I especially love you. You're such an amazing woman and I hope you know that.

-Commitment---- I wish to also invite everyone who reads this to try out being more obedient. When the times get rough remember the council of your parents, teachers, and leaders. They are put in their positions for a reason and I promise you their advice, direction, and council is often inspired for OUR benefit.

-Elder Sargeant

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Faith is the Key (July 28)

Gi'day Mates!

This week has been SO fulfilling, and the blessings from Heavenly Father continue to come down. Our Zone, as missionaries, SMASHED IT this week! We had so many miracles take place, with 6 people on date to be baptized, and many referrals from members as well as new investigators.

As for us, since my companion is the district leader, we decided together that WE need to set the bar for the expectations of the district. We stepped it up, and faith was the key to our success. We were able to have so many blessings come through our efforts, especially through the members. We have amazing Assistants to the President (APs), and Zone Leaders who continue to share their knowledge and insights with us. For this third quarter of the year, our slogan is "Members are the Key: 163" with 163 being the number of baptisms we want to reach as a mission. We were instructed to increase our faith, have more sense of urgency, and that will lead to be more skilled as teachers and as representatives of Jesus Christ. Our work could always be better.

To start out, this week, we were able to have a relaxing preparation day (p-day), the first I have honestly had since coming to Tassie. Tuesday we had the zone leaders come down to stay with us for the night as we all headed to district meeting. It was a powerful experience, and I have come to realize that wherever there are heaps of missionaries gathered, there is such a strong sense of peace, happiness, and joy. The Spirit was so strong as we gathered and learned from one another. It's so true when it says in the Bible "For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." (Matthew 18:20). That has never been more apparent as when we met the Mission President, and when we were at this meeting together.


The APs (Assistants to the President) are brilliant elders. They are well trained, focused, and loving. They can have fun while fulfilling their purpose as missionaries, which is so refreshing to see! We were able to go on exchanges and I learned HEAPS from them. We were able to start our 30 minute program for teaching, and we received so many member referrals that I hardly could keep track of them. It's amazing, how members really are the key for spreading the work of the Lord, and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.


Let me just share with you that as missionaries, a lot of people have this understanding that we are seemingly endless in our knowledge and our capacities. This is true ONLY when we allow the Spirit to do the teaching. However, as people we are very much imperfect and I have to tell you... that pride is something that is so hard to overcome. The Book of Mormon almost always mentions pride as the downfall of any nation, or society. Ultimately, it was one of the causes of the afflictions of the Lamanites, and the destruction of the Nephites. Pride is EVIL, and being on a mission amplifies how truly hard it is to be humble. However, when we allow ourselves to just love one another, and trust each other, we can see that things work out.


We were able to see so many blessings this week. As we provided service for an older couple named the Clarks, we were able to meet a good friend of Sister Clarks's. Her name is Trudie, and she is interested in the Church. We met her, got to know her pretty well, and are now working on getting over to her home to start teaching her and her 8 year old son. They are prepared for the Gospel! It's amazing how the Lord puts so many people in our lives that are honestly searching for the gospel, but just are unsure where to always find it. Well duh... look at your Mormon friends! They KNOW!!!!

Next, we decided when some plans fell through to go visit a lady named Monica Milano that we tracted into a fortnight ago. (Two weeks = fortnight). We knocked on her door, and she opened seemingly surprised! She started out by saying that she was very busy and wouldn't be able to have us come over at the moment, but my companion and I had the feeling to just ask about her day, her interests, and her family. We talked and talked for about 15 to 20 minutes and she opened up to us her real concerns! She was so humble in her speaking, and since she is from Mexico her English isn't perfect, but she just let us know that she wants us to come back. She expressed to us how she never grew up with a spiritual family as most people from Mexico do, especially in Tia Juana, and how she was thinking about the idea of God maybe being real. She invited us over to teach her for this Thursday and I was SO dang pumped!! THANK YOU HEAVENLY FATHER FOR PREPARING HER HEART!!!!!

We also were able to teach an Indian man named Sabu Joseph who lives... well... RIGHT NEXT DOOR TO US! He and his wife just moved into the flat next door about a fortnight ago and we introduced ourselves in hopes to be able to get to know them. Sabu walked into us while we were on our way back from the library and we set up an appointment to teach him in his home. Yesterday, we had that opportunity right after church. We came in and sat down in his humble abode that had 2 recliner chairs, a leather couch, and a coffee table against the wall. He is out of a job and his wife is working night shifts so they are on a very tight budget. However, he offered us heaps of food, little sponge cakes, guava juice, and he even went as far as opening up our packages of cakes for us. He is the most Christ-like man I have ever had the chance of meeting. He was all about serving us, and it was a real eye opener to me. We taught him, got to know him, and committed him to be baptized. He said he would pray about it, and read the Book of Mormon. It didn't turn out in a baptismal date right then and there, but a man of that faith is no doubt going to find an answer to his prayers.

I cannot begin to express the love and appreciation I have for the Lord and His blessings. They come in EVERY moment I stand in need. As long as we strive to keep the commandments and do all we can, we are promised blessings, and it's so apparent as Elder Hosman and I work hard to build and exercise our faith in Christ.

A shout out to Mina Edwards who emailed me earlier this week. MINA.... YOU MADE MY DAY. Never has any been able to make me smile as much as your kindness and honesty did to me. You're going to SMASH IT in Ukraine for your mission and I wish you the happiness and joy that I KNOW you will have, and that you will bring to those you find, teach, and baptize.

That is all I can think of. Things are going very well as the transfer comes to an end in a fortnight. I cannot believe how fast time has gone. It's been 4 months since I have been a missionary and the time just keeps going faster. It makes me think how precious our time here on earth really is. Cherish every moment because those moments make your life worth it.

I Love you All Heaps!!!

Keep the Faith.

With Love,
Elder Sargeant

Elder Sargeant, Cassie, Anthony (new convert), Elder Hosman

The Gorge in Riverside Tasmania