E-mail dated 3/25/12

Kia Ora,

So this week has been a really fun week. So the news about transfers is: I was shifted down to South Auckland! I am serving in Tamaki Stake in Tangaroa Ward and my companion is Elder Sorensen (The one in the pictures). The week has been so busy and crazy!. The weekend that I got into my new area I got to participate in a Baptismal service! I got to give a talk at the Baptism of M and D Te. This family is awesome. They are a less-active returning family and the 2 youngest kids got baptized. After church on Sunday we went over to their house and had lunch. I got to try some smoked fish and this thing called Puke (Poo-Kay) its banana mixed with coconut cream. It was interesting because the texture is a little weird but it wasn't bad. New Zealand is amazing! We also have 4 other people set for baptism for the weeks coming up. This lady M and her twin daughters A and C are planning on getting baptized this week but Elder Sorensen and I don't know if she'll be ready for this weekend but maybe the next. We will work with her to see if we can prepare her for this weekend but we'll see. Then we also have someone named P set for the 13 which is a Friday because he is busy on the Saturday. I actually haven't met him yet. From what I've been told the only thing thats keeping him back from baptism is his partner. He is living with his partner and she won't marry him until he takes care of his anger problems. He is getting professional help and the gospel so it should happen soon. His family is also against having us over and they kicked the missionaries out last time and so now we have to do lessons at the chapel. It's an amazing ward though. I love it already. The area is really flat and very small so not much biking compared to my last area. Also the ward is really good at fellowshipping. There is this thing each week called Cottage Evening and it basically is FHE but with a few families. The ward is really big for New Zealand. We meet at the stake center and the ward is probably the same size as our ward back home if not bigger. I love it! My companion Elder Sorensen is the Man! He is also the District Leader which means we get a cell phone again. (Oh how I missed it from my first area). Cell phones make missionary work so much easier but we also have a lot more responsibility. We have been working so hard these last few days. Elder Sorensen is from West Valley Utah and he did a year of Uni at Snow College before he came out and he is majoring in music. This next month of April we have a goal of saving 8 souls together. It will be hard but I'm excited because I know the Lord can do all things and I know He will provide if we are worthy and willing.

My thought that I would like to share with you this week comes from Alma 37:37.

"Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings..."

We are not able to do everything on our own. The Lord knows everything and can help us in all that we do. Even the little things we should bring to the Lord because it is a way that we show our humility. By taking all of our questions to Him it is acknowledging Him as the one person that can do all things. He loves to hear from us and get to know us. Understanding that God is our Loving Heavenly Father is the most essential thing to know because if we know this then we know all the many things that He has blessed us with and we know that we can take our problems to Him and he will help us.

I just want you all to know that I love you and that Heavenly Father loves you. Keep working hard in all that your doing and keep the commandments and Heavenly Father will bless you.

Ofa Atu,
Elder Lee

This looks like a blue ladybug. He didn't say.

E-mail dated 3/18/12

Kia Ora,

This week was a week of miracles. We found out this week that my companion Elder Evans is training this next transfer. So I got to stay with another missionary while he went to his training meeting with another missionary. But all of this means that I'm being transfered this Thursday. Where I'm going and who my companion will be is still a mystery. We don't find out until the night before. This week we've been working hard to get our investigator M ready for baptism on the 23rd (this Friday). She is so difficult because we always schedule appointments but when we go over she almost always cancels on us because of her health. She has diabetes and she doesn't really take care of herself. We try to teach her a little bit each time. We are praying that we can prepare her for her baptism. This week we also received a huge miracle from the Lord. We received a referral from a member of a family whose Mom and Daughter have been going to church for the last 4 weeks. The mom is a less active member and the daughter isn't a member and so we were able to meet with her and her family yesterday evening with our Zone Leaders. Her name is N and she is now set for the 24th of this week which is Saturday! We are so excited and are praying that we will be able to prepare her as well. We are going to have a Family Home Evening with her family and another family in the ward tonight. I'm excited! We even had 2 investigators come to church yesterday. Their names are A and V. They are from Zimbabwe and are super keen. We taught them the Restoration and now the Plan of Salvation and they really want to know if what we share is true. It's been a huge miracle with them. Hopefully we can resolve A's concern about being baptized already in her church. We tried explaining it before with a bowl of water, pepper, and dishwashing liquid. I don't know if she really caught on that our church is the ONLY church with the power of God!

This week Elder Evans and I actually even got asked to give surprise talks in one of our wards this Sunday. The topic was missionary work so it wasn't too hard to make one up on the spot. It was basically a massive friendshare though. (A friendshare meaning a visit with members to share a spiritual thought and ask for referalls). Overall, that's my week. At least all that sticks out in my mind. Oh yeah, I ripped my blue suit pants this week because they came out of my sock when I was riding my bike and they got caught in the chain. I was so upset for about half a second then I had to keep biking to my dinner appointment. Hopefully they can be fixed.

Now, I just want to share something I learned this week from the Book of Mormon in our 90 day reading of it. I was reading in 2 Nephi 33:1. Now I don't have my scriptures on me this week so I can't quote it but Nephi shares with us that he has weaknesses. I feel that people tend to make Nephi out to be this perfect man. It's not quite like that. Nephi was not very strong in writing as he was in speaking. Now this is a mean thing to think about because. The converting power of his writings are so strong that anyone who reads and prays will know the truth of the Book of Mormon. And so if his speaking was stronger than his writing then imagine what it would have been like to be in his time and to hear his words. The other aspect of this verse that I like to consider is that Nephi still had weaknesses just like all of us and he put his trust in God and was strengthened. I know that as we put our trust in God our weaknesses can become strong through the power of God. When I first started this transfer I did not work out really at all. I found it so hard just to wake up and work our immediately. As I prayed for the desire and the strength to work out every morning, God blessed me and I have worked out every day (except for Sunday) since.

Hope everything is well and I love you all and want to hear from you.

Ofa Atu,
Elder Lee

E-mail dated 3/11/12

Kia Ora,

This week has been an unusual week for sure. We had a few interesting lessons. On Monday my companion and I had just a great day and so we went out and talked to everyone. We ran into this one guy who was an Islamic person that said that he was looking for the "best apple in the market." We thought sweet because we have "the best apple," so we set up an appointment for the next day. When we went by he let us in and gave us some biscuits (cookies) and lollies (candy) and talked for ages. This guy wouldn't let us talk and he was just talking about how Jesus Christ isn't God and a whole lot of stuff that didn't make sense and so we told him that we had to go because we did. As we were leaving he gave us some "literature" to read that "disproves" the Bible. When we went home that night we looked at it and half of the stuff didn't make sense and the other half agreed with what we said. He even gave us a pamphlet of frequently asked questions of Islam. I didn't know there were frequently asked questions. We also as a district have made a goal of praying with 30 people each week. This is pretty hard but it is definitely enjoyable. We talked to one lady who when we asked if we could say a prayer she actually asked if she could pray for us and we said sure and so she asks if she can put her hands on our shoulders and we just said alright. It was a very weird experience but this week has definitely helped me to see from the perspective of the investigator. Being asked to pray is weird!

Even though we had some interesting experiences we also got to have some very spiritual experiences. This last week we had the privilege of going to a city wide conference and so we were able to hear from Brother and Sister Beck (General Young Men's President), Brother and Sister Osguthorpe (General Sunday School President), and Elder and Sister Watson (2nd counselor in the area presidency, member of the 1st Quorum of the Seventy, and Secretary to the First Presidency). It was an amazing opportunity to be taught by the Spirit. I don't think there was ever a time in my life when I learned so much in one meeting. I think that's partly because life is progressing and everything always gets harder and better.

One of the many things that I took away from this conference was something I learned from a scripture. Alma 26:27 is a great scripture if you are ever going through a hard time. Now, in this scripture Ammon and the sons of Mosiah are reflecting back on their missions and Ammon is speaking here and they are thinking back to a time where they were facing a lot of persecution and hardship. The scripture reads: "Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success."

Now it isn't very comforting to be told to go back into the hardship and the trials and deal with it. But it was explained to me that if you go back far enough in the root of the word comfort, it means strengthened and so if you read it again replacing the word comforted with strengthened it reads: "Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord strengthened us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success."

This means that the Lord strengthened them as they went to bear their burdens and made it so that they could overcome them. He also blessed them with success so if you are ever having a hard time just remember that the Lord will strengthen you as you bear your burdens with patience and will give you success.

Ofa Atu,

Elder Lee

P.S. Mom-
Getting a package ready for you, anything you want in there?
1) Mac and Cheese and no chocolate please. I've given up chocolate but I'm more than happy to receive Sweet and Salty Bars.
What are you enjoying most about your mission?
2) I am loving getting to know all these different types of people and hearing their experiences.
Have you done any sight seeing on your p-day?
3) I have not done any sight seeing. Most P-days are spent emailing, shopping, and volleyball/basketball.


I did get your package and thank you so much! I loved it. I never even tried the Maple and Brown Sugar one before, and it was delicious.

E-mail dated 3/4/12

Kia Ora,

This last week has been a great week. We have been working hard to stretch ourselves and we have been able to increase all of our stats this last week. Elder Evans and I have been so blessed this last week but the only hard thing is that after we do everything we can to get people to keep commitments they still have their agency and so we had planned to see13 people at sacrament including investigators and less actives. Unfortunately only 1 expected one showed up and 1 unexpected 1. It's pretty hard at times because you really want them to want the change for themselves but they don't always see the blessings that come from living the gospel.

This week one of the things that really helped me to stay positive is a scripture found in 2 Nephi 2:8 then verse 6. Verse 8 says, "Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known..." What things? Verse 6 tells us, "Wherefore, redemtion cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth." The joy that comes from sharing the gospel is so great and the desires of my heart are that every worthy man who is able and willing to serve a mission do because the blessings are far greater than not serving. I wish there was a way to express to my friends back home that there is nothing that I would rather be doing right now in my life, and I pray that each one of them goes out and experiences this happiness for themselves.

If there is ever a time that you don't feel as though you can or you don't feel as though you are important, remember YOU ARE! Scott Simons said this about the individual worth, "Remember that the greatest price ever paid for someone was paid for you!" If we can just understand this little concept then everything else just falls into place, and we will understand how much God loves each and every one of us.

Hope you are all doing well. Ofa Atu!

Elder Lee

P.S. I told my companion to send more pictures home. He wants to know how you got in contact with his parents. I told him it was through missionary moms but that was a complete guess. Oh and here are some of my pictures. 2 of them are my district because Elder Leong (the one in the front) is being emergency shifted down to Hamilton. The other two are pictures of cool scenery in the city because I'm in a threesome for today with Elder Matthews (Back right) who is a chinese missionary that serves in the city.

Letter to the Goodfellow Family

Kyle wrote a letter to the Goodfellow's. A family in our ward. They were gracious enough to share it with us, so I am posting it for you. If you click on it, it will become bigger for you to read it better.