Wednesday, October 30, 2013

October 29, 2013 Letter

Hi Family!
Leslie it sounds like things are going really well for you and the babies! That is awesome to hear. That is kind of cool that you guys are going to have a nanny. We need to hire one of those for us over here. Just kidding. Karen and Alvin it sounds like BYU is still treating you well. I can't believe that you are both graduating this year. Everyone in Edmonton it sounds like you had a great weekend with stake conference. I would love to hear Elder Holland in person. We probably aren't suppose to pick favorite apostles, but I would have to say that Elder Holland is definitely one of mine. He is a very powerful speaker.
Well this week was pretty good. I am emailing today because we had our Temple Pday this week. So we went to the temple this morning and then we have Pday. We get to go to the temple once a transfer. We woke up at 4:30 this morning to catch the train up to the city so we could make the eight o'clock session. I love going to the temple.
I had an interesting experience this week. So me and my companion were riding our bikes through this park last week when all of a sudden something hit me in the head. I was a little confused until I looked up and saw a bird swooping down at me. I tried to get away but it came down and hit me again. It is a good thing I had a helmet on. It hit pretty hard. I guess the magpies here are pretty ferocious. Kind of funny. I just thought I would share that. I also learned how to say "thank-you my stomach is full" in Samoan this week. Hopefully it will be helpful whenever we eat at a Samoan families house.
Mom I did think of a few things I would love for Christmas if you haven't already sent anything. A new journal would be great. Also some new blades for my electric razor. My razor is starting to burn my face. On the back of my razor it says "replace with original Philip's HQ9 heads." My razor is one of those ones that has 3 spinning blades. It is called a Philips Aqua touch. Thanks!
Well I will answer just a couple questions quick. They do celebrate Halloween over here, but I am not sure how big it is. Apparently it is starting to catch on more. The area where we serve though would probably be pretty dangerous for kids to go trick-or-treating. Maybe we will stay home that nights and hand out Books of Mormon for trick-or-treaters. Mom I do bike with my shoulder bag. I don't have a back pack. I had a pretty cheap one while I was serving in Utah but I left it there because I thought I would only use a shoulder bag over here. Plus the back pack wasn't very good. I am getting use to riding with it, but it isn't the most comfortable. Oh well.
The work here is going great! Last week was one of our best weeks yet. We found quite a few solid potentials that we are going back to see this week. We also had a guy move into our area named Josh Lilo. He is part Samoan part Maori. He split up with his girlfriend (or wife?) because she didn't believe in God and apparently should would make fun of him because he did. He said he really wants to find God and that she was just a bad influence. I think I told you a bit about him last week, but he is a great guy! And we have some great news to share with him. We are having some struggles with a couple of other investigators. Alana and Shana are really struggling. Mostly because they can't keep commitments. They say they believe "most" of what we teach, but they struggle with some other things. We are really trying to help them. They are great and I know they have felt the Spirit, but it comes down to their choice.
Well this week was pretty tiring, but it really showed me that the Lord does provide a way for us to do His work. I pray every day for strength, and I can feel the Lord helping me. We had a meeting yesterday and something that really hit me is that we never know who the Lord has prepared. That is why we as missionaries need to talk to everyone. Even if we are just planting seeds, it is still worth it. This Gospel is for everyone. There isn't a person on Earth that this Gospel can't bless. The Lord loves us and knows each of us personally. He knows our strengths and our weaknesses. I love Ether 12:27. Through Him our weaknesses can become strengths. I love you all and pray for you everyday. Have a great week!
Elder Low

Monday, October 21, 2013

October 21, 2013 Letter

Hi Family!

How is everybody doing? From what I hear it sounds like everybody is busy with work, school, or something. That is good! Leslie I am glad to hear that everything is still going well. Are you excited that you only have a couple weeks left of pregnancy? It will be pretty crazy when they all come though. Dad it sounds like you did a great job at stake conference this week like always. I can't believe how many missionaries are going out from Cardston. That is awesome! Oh and happy birthday to Benson coming up soon! I can't believe he is already 2 years old.

Well this week was really busy! I get a lot more worn out now that we are biking every day. There are a lot of hills around here. My legs are getting use to it though. They are either getting stronger or they are just numb. I am not sure.

So I ran into someone this week that served his mission in Edmonton. He was wearing an Oilers jersey so I went up and talked to him for a bit. He tells me that they aren't doing too good this year. Oh well. There is more to life than sports.

Mom my bike is a pretty good size. They have changed the bike policy here. We each have our own personal bikes that we have to keep with us the whole mission. So we just take them with us to each area. At the end of our mission we can even take them home if we want. We do get an ensign each month so we will get the conference issue. I am really excited about that.

I am not too sure what I want for Christmas. Some music would be great! Other than that I probably don't need a whole lot. Feel free to send me whatever you want though. I won't say no. I love getting letters and packages.

Well the work this week was awesome! One advantage to the bikes is that we can stop and talk to more people when we are on our way to our appointments and other stuff. We had a couple people that we are teaching make very big steps this week. I am not sure if I have told you much about Andrew Smith, but he is a less-active member that has a very big word of wisdom problem. He loves it when we stop by because he says it gives him motivation to resist temptation. But this week we made a deal with him. One of the reasons he wouldn't come to church was because his pants needed to be hemmed. So he told us if we could get his pants hemmed, he would come to church. So we did it! And he came to church! He loved it. It was so funny to see how happy he was. He is a very funny guy. He tells us that every time he reads his scriptures he does a fist pump when he is done. He is making great progress. Now the challenge is just consistency.

We had another interesting experience this week. Last Monday night we were GQ'ing people at a train station. We hadn't got anybody all night that wanted to listen to us. But on our way home from the train Station we talked to one last guy. His name is Samuel. Anyway to make a long story short, he ended up coming to church this week! He has a couple issues that we need to work out, but hopefully we can get through those. It just shows that every person you meet counts. You never know who the Lord has prepared. We may only find 1 in every 100 people we talk to, but it is so worth it.

Something that I love about the mission is seeing people change their lives for the better. Just to see Andrew's excitement this week made me so happy. He told us how thankful he was that we kept coming by. He wants to change so much. And I know that with the Lord's help, he can. With God nothing is impossible. We may experience trials and set backs, but like we were told in conference, brighter days are ahead. There is a quote in my room that I love to read. It is Jeffery R. Holland and he says something like this: "Blessings may not come now, they may not come later, and they may not even come in this life. But for those who embrace the Gospel of Jesus Christ, they do come." It is so true! We are so blessed! God has so much in store for us. Thank you all for your love and support! I hope everyone has a great week! Love you all!

Elder Low

Thursday, October 17, 2013

October 14, 2013 Letter

Hi Family!
I'm not going to lie, I get jealous when I hear everybody speaking about how cold it is at home. I loved the winter. When it gets cold that means basketball season is coming up. Anyway, its sounds liked everything is going well. Its good to hear that the potatoes came up alright. Want to send me some? Just kidding. Happy birthday on the 16th Dad! It sounds like you already celebrated in style. That is good. Julie and Brian thank you for the letter! Claire is a little artist. I love letters! Except they take a long time to get here. I got one from one of my friends at BYU and it took almost a month to get here. That is ok though.
Well this week has been very interesting. We got some news the other day that we are getting our car taken away from us. With all the new missionaries coming into the mission there are a lot more areas being opened. So they came by this morning and took our car for another area. We are full time bike now! I am actually kind of excited about that. We get lots of exercise because there are a lot of hills in this area. I am just concerned about my companion Elder Porutu. He is struggling with the bikes. Hopefully we will both get into better shape.
I will try to answer a few questions quickly. Mom conference here was for all of the church members and not just the missionaries. We went to the chapel here to watch it. I am pretty sure Elder Porutu grew up in the church. He said there are a ton of members in Tahiti. I am not sure when thanksgiving is here, but if you want to send us a turkey you are more than welcome. The food we eat at our flat is pretty american. We eat a lot of peanut butter and jam sandwiches, noodles, cereal, and surprisingly a lot of nutella. We try to buy a lot of fruit as well. When we go to members homes though they have some special dishes. Chop suiy or something like that is something we eat a lot. It is like really soft brown noodles with chicken or something in it. It is great! The Samoans here like to give us Cocoa Samoa as well. It is kind of like hot chocolate, but not as good. We do get tim tams on special occasions. We don't buy them because we don't have a whole ton of money. Mom I actually play the piano quite often here. I play for district meeting and there was actually a baptism that I was asked to play at as well.
Well the work has been up and down this week. A lot of people we have been teaching have been avoiding us lately or have told us that they want to hold of on lessons for a little bit. One even moved without us knowing. So we have been out doing a lot of tracting and GQ'ing again. We have also started receiving a ton of referrals all of a sudden. It is weird because we rarely ever got referrals last transfer. The Lord works in mysterious ways. So hopefully we will be able to replenish our teaching pool soon. There are a couple of girls we are teaching though, Alana and Shana, that have been doing alright. I am not sure how much I told you about them, but they are very happy to have us over. Like I said, their problem is just keeping commitments. The other day we talked about the Word of Wisdom and we set some good goals for both of them. So hopefully that goes well. I know they have felt the Spirit, they just need to act on it.
Well we got to listen to conference this weekend over here. You probably already know this, but it was amazing! I love hearing our leaders speak. I definitely took that for granted at home. It seemed to me like there was a lot of talks this time on adversity, the atonement, and missionary work. They are really starting to stress members and missionaries working together. I love it! There was a couple of quotes I really liked though. One of them was "doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith." I am pretty sure President Uchtdorf said it. I love that because Satan is real. He will always try to get us to doubt. We see that with people we teach all the time. But we all know that the power of God is far greater then the power of Satan. He will testify to us if we allow him too. We need to let our faith grow. The other quote I really liked was "God's love for you is there whether you deserve it or not." I think that was Elder Holland quoting President Monson. It is amazing how much our Father in Heaven loves us. He will never leave us. His hand is always stretched out. He sees us make mistakes over and over, but He will never give up on us. That is why we should never give up on others. Everyone is unique. Everyone is a son or daughter of God. We just have to do our best to see others the way the Savior sees them. We have to see others as who they can become.
I am so grateful to be born and raised in this Gospel. I am so grateful to all of you. We have such amazing family and friends. We are so blessed because of the Gospel. I love you all so much! I hope you have a great week.
Elder Low

Elder Porutu and I. The "fix red eye" option only seemed to work on one eye. We are in our lava lavas.

This was my zone at P-day. I love our zone.

This is at Waitai Ikiua's baptism. Her dad got to baptize her. My companion was Elder Iongi.

Still got it. :)

Elder French and I at the airport.

October 7, 2013 Letter

Hi Family!
Well It sounds like everyone enjoyed conference. That is awesome that some of you got to go. I remember last year at this time when I was there. I love conference! We get to see it this up coming weekend. So I am excited! Robbie it sounds like your lost without Cammie. Just kidding. But that is funny that Zach had to go through a window. Joanie good luck with the training for the half marathon. That is tough!
Well I am writing today because we had transfers today! So today is our Pday and we had our transfer meeting this morning. I have another new companion! If you include the MTC this is my seventh companion already on the mission. His name is Elder Perutu. He is from Tahiti and he has been out on his mission about eight months. He is still trying to learn English so I will be having language study with him in the morning. He also speaks fluent French though, and we are trying to teach a couple that speak French. So that will be awesome! Oh and I am still in the same area. It was my companion Elder Iongi that got transferred.
Mom we do a lot of different things for Pday. I think I mentioned that we play a lot of basketball. Sometimes we go to the park and there are things to do there like touch rugby. Last week we went bowling. It was fun! I got a 176. Not too bad eh? Just kidding. The weather her is starting to get even worse. I feel like I am in an oven every time I walk outside. Its great! Especially when we have the car.
Well the work has been going great! We had Waitai's baptism last Saturday morning. It was awesome to see her Dad baptize her. And Mom to answer your questions, Waitai's Mother lives in New Zealand. Her parents are separated and I don't think her Mom is a member of the church. They are a happy family though. Waitai is doing great! We have a ton of other investigators as well. Our tracting and GQ'ing have really been paying off. Our problem with them though is trying to get them to keep commitments. We are teaching a couple of girls name Alana and Shanna right now. Alana is 22 and Shanna is 20. They live together and Alana has 2 kids. We have had some great lessons with them! I know they have felt the Spirit. I think the biggest problem for them is just giving up a lot of things that they consider to be fun. It is sad because the worlds standards have started to drift so far away from the churches standards. 
Well sorry my email is so short this week. I feel like we get less time to email every week. I hope everything is going well back home though! Just remember to put the Lord first in your lives. I know that as we do that, He will strengthen us. We weren't sent to this Earth to fail. He was us to come out on top. That is why He will help us carry our burdens. The Gospel is such a blessing! I love being a missionary! Have a great week and I love you all!
Elder Low

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Letter From Sister Willoughby

My name is Linda Willoughby, my husband is Bishop of Logan Ward in Brisbane Australia where your son is serving his mission.I wanted to send you a brief email to let you know that you can be very proud of your son, he is doing well. We had the missionaries over at our home last evening and was a delighted to have a home cooked meal with 'GRAVY', he said he has not had gravy since being here.
He left a very special and spiritual message at the end of the evening, we are looking forward to getting to know him better as he serves in our ward.
As a mother with a son serving in Ghana, West Africa I know that all and any news is wonderful, they don't have much time to communicate so enjoy some pics from last night and today. In the 1st picture is Bishop Willoughby and Elder Iongi
God Bless,
 Linda Willoughby