Monday, February 25, 2013

Hampton Court Palace

We took a trip to Hampton Court Palace Monday, Feb 25, 2013.
The weather was really cold, but it was really fun to visit this amazing palace. I will share with you some pictures. Most of them don't have me in them, but you saw too much of me...We bought a membership card that gets us into all the palaces for free anytime for the whole year. It's great...

Entrance to the palace:

 
 
The middle of the Palace:

 
The River Thames:

 
These are guns and various weapons arranged like this:

 
Henry the VIIIth first and second wife acting for us:

 
the outside Gardens, it was too cold to go walk in them:

 
This is a picture of the maze, but really much bigger in reality:

 
Me inside the maze. You could really get so lost in there:

 
The lion entrance to the palace:

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Zone Conference

Feb 21, 2013

Today I had to go to the Police station to register. They request this from some of those who are not British citizens.  Luckily it was fast as we had to go our Zone conference. Zone conference is a conference the mission president holds for all missionaries every 2-3 months.  We had various speakers and it was wonderful.

The great thing about it is that you have these missionaries who are so young, like 19 and 20 years old. Normally 19 year old teenagers would be into all sorts of strange things. But these men were amazing. Pres. Millar called on 3 of them to speak and they spoke with such power and testified of Christ. You can tell that they really KNEW Christ, that every day in their lives they tried to be like Him and serve Him. And when it was time to pray those young men and women bowed down so reverently and you could tell how much they loved and respected their Heavenly Father.  They are so focused on the Lord and His service. And when the speaker asked them if they have ever had an experience where God told them what to say to someone almost every one of them raised their hands. They are led by Him and follow His voice.

There is a musical called the 'Book of Mormon' that is about to be played here in England. Our church has nothing to do with that. But, the church is doing its best to contradict the message in the musical and clarify the real teachings of the church. We were told today that the church is going to do some advertising especially in London around the time of the play. There will be church ads in train stations, on busses, in the subway and other places. One particular thing I liked was the ad "Read the book, the book is always better" To try and get people to read the book of Mormon. We are trying to refer people to the site  mormon.org where they can find information about the church and read stories from Mormons across the world. 





Friday, February 15, 2013

Various Pictures

Hello from England...I am still enjoying my time here and learning new things every day. My geography is getting better, I am learning about new countries every day and new languages (never knew there was a language called Twi--did you?). I still can't speak British English. They would call me on the phone and start speaking and I almost want to say: "Do you speak English?" Even when they spell something for me I still can't get it because their b's sound like v's and stuff like that.

By the way I got to Drive today on the left side of the road...It was crazy, but I am still in one piece. I'll practice more as time goes by...

A few days it snowed, but very little.


 
 
Yesterday and today were very nice (see the rainbow).  Here everyone says it is nice weather if it does not rain. They don't care if it is cold or cloudy, but no rain is good.
 
 
 
 
 
Just wanted to show you something. This missionary we have working in the office can create master pieces from paper. he does not use glue or anything, he just forms the paper. Below is a rose he folded out of paper and gave to Sister Kae for her farewell. 



Below is a nativity scene he made out of paper. Look at the faces, isn't it amazing?



President Millar treated us to dinner at this Mexican restaurant. It was really good food and very nice setting. Burritos are nothing like we have back home.


 
And for Sister Kae (since she is leaving they sang for her and brought this big desert. We were so full after we ate that the 10 of us could not finish it.
 


 
 President and Sister Millar (my mission president and his wife) are sitting across from me.
 

 
 
 

 


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Trip to London

We took a trip to London as there was a lunch organized for all those serving here. We took the train, tube and finally made it. It was actually very convenient and easy (well, with the help of Sister Hess).
We had lunch then went walking around. It was freezing. We picked the wrong day to be out I guess.

On the train up to London. Really nice scenery.



Lunch. Tried British food, but it was not that great I guess. The salad bar was good though.


 
At the O2. Still don't know why they call it the O2, but it has shops, restaurants, and a big theater.

 
We were going to ride the cable car across the river Thames, but sadly it was too windy and so they would not let us on. We were so sad. We'll go back when it is warmer.

 
In the center of town...there are SO many of these red busses. Those with me insisted that I would be sick of the busses at the end, but I don't know if I will.

 
At the train station

 
Crossing the River Thames on the train.

 
 
Dinner at the Thai Restaurant next to the temple. Really good food, really nice place. Across from me is Marlene who I used to know from Jerusalem.
 

Monday, February 4, 2013

Yay got to speak Turkish

I spoke to a Turkish investigator today. He is very interested in the church and wanted to have someone come over and teach him. He also said he wanted to attend church.
Amazingly enough when I spoke to him I had no problem with Turkish. He even thought I could not understand English.  He said he speaks some English, but I hope the missionaries that go to teach him will need my language skills. It would be nice to have that experience.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Nigeria

We went to a fireside (talk) tonight by Brother and Sister Matthews. It was all about their mission in Nigeria. Quite amazing I must say. I should never complain again. They lived in a hut, with no electricity most of the time and no water (they had to transport it from the river). They had amazing experiences and miracles where Heavenly Father protected them and guided them to help others. I'll share some of the experiences below:
One time they were in the middle of a gun fight where bullets were flying in all directions. Brother Matthews had his wife put her head in his lap and put his own head down and drove fast without looking at the road. He almost hit a bus as he was driving on the wrong side of the road. 5 people died in the taxi that was right behind them, while they were unharmed.
 
One time they were in the car and it starting raining with large rain drops. Because of the rain they could see nothing ahead. In normal situations, you can just park on the side to wait for the rain to stop, but not in Nigeria. It was not safe to stop because you could get shot or mugged or something. Br. Matthews turned back to the missionary behind him in the car and said: “pray”. The missionary prayed and when they opened their eyes after the prayer they saw a light in front of them that stayed with them and guided them until they made it to their place which was 30 miles away.
 
One day, the king asked them to come to visit him. You never say no to the king. Whatever he commands you do.  The king lived on a hill away from the village and in a much nicer place. When they got there, he welcomed them then brought them the best thing he could offer. They realized that what he brought to offer them (which was considered a delicacy) was coca cola seeds which were so concentrated in caffeine and against the word of wisdom (against the commandments of God). Br. Mathews said he didn’t want to offend the king and wondered what he should do. He decided to let the Holy Ghost guide him to know what to say...so, he asked the King: “Do you believe in God?” then when the king said he did, Br. Matthews asked "Would rather offend a friend or offend God?” After a long conversation, Br Matthews ended up gaining respect of the king who later allowed them to have a church meeting house right in the middle of town.
 
Took a picture at the visitor's center today after the fireside with Sister Hess and Sister Kae
 
 

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Reflections

I went to the bank today and they refused to open a bank account for me. The person there said she would look into it and get back to me. you are automatically classified as "terrorist" if you are Palestinian unless proven otherwise. Anyway, we'll wait until she gets back to me.

Since today is our P-day (off day), we went shopping again. I even got to look at some clothes and thing are NOT as expensive as everyone told me. I don't know why I thought I can't buy things here and had to take everything! Oh well, too late. We ate at McDonalds, the meal was about 4 pounds. Sadly, I still don't think they can do it as good as the one in the US, but at least it is better than the ones back home. I had McDonalds once back home and thought it was so disgusting.

Sister Kae is going to leave me most of her stuff as she goes home in 10 days. She is leaving me a CD player, blender, freezer, food, cups...etc. So, I have so much stuff now which is great.
I am finally understanding what I need to do in the office. Sister Kae has been so patient with me.
One of my tasks involve answering phones from those interested in the church. Sometimes the calls are from those who want to criticize the church, but today I had two really good calls. One was from someone who said he was a member of the church in the past and wanted to return to church. The other one was from someone who said that he had lessons from the missionaries in the past and he has been reading and thinking and he knows that what the missionaries taught him is true.

On Tuesday we are going to London. They are taking all the missionaries out to eat there. I am really excited about seeing London. We will ride the train up there. I will take lots of pictures and post them.
I have been feeling more at home here although I miss Palestine a lot. I was reading the bible today and they had some pictures from Palestine and I was sad, but still would much rather be here (sorry everyone). Who knew I would get home sick reading the bible!

I still have not taken a lot of pictures, but I will start taking some soon. I promise...
This one is in my current apartment (but it looks like the new one as the furniture is pretty much similar)
 
This is my back yard (literally) and hopefully the trees will get leaves in the spring.


 Also in front of my apartment (the temple) and I sent a picture earlier. The ducks in this pond are gone for the winter, but should return soon.