E-Mail Dated 8/20/12

Kia Ora, This week has been a really fun week. We had a lot going on out of the ordinary so it was a lot of fun. Last Monday for my B-Day P-Day we went to the top of Kaiti Hill (not the hill I wanted but it was still fun). We got some mean pictures and just had a lot of fun because it was also a bit of a hike. We also had our Zone Conference this last Thursday and since we're in Gisborne and the conference was in Hamilton, we had to leave the day before and stay the night in Hamilton so we could be there on time. It was a fun exerience because we got to stay at "The Mansion." It's the biggest flat in the mission and it was nice as! It had stainless steel appliances and lots of space. It's because it's part of a member's house. The sad thing about these trips is that we have to eat out a lot and so we have to save up a lot of our money to survive. We have another long trip this week to Auckland for our Mission Conference. Elder Christensen of the 70 is coming to speak to us. We also were able to get a fair bit of work done in our area even though we've been gone so long from our area. We have one investigator that is so keen! She is 16 and her name is S. She is Maori and she wants to be baptised and come to church. The only reason she hasn't come to church so far is because the first week she didn't want to go alone and her cousin wouldn't go with her. Also, this last Sunday she was at a Kapa Haka competition. Kapa Haka is a traditional Maori dance that is very big in New Zealand. They dress up and everything. The Haka is mainly just guys and Kapa Haka is with the girls. I believe that's how it works any ways. Apparently her school is ranked like #3 in the Nation and she says that they should've been 2nd. She's really cool though. Other than that not much happened this week, but hopefully I can share more next time. Love you heaps! Elder Lee

E-Mail Dated 8/13/12 (his birthday)

Kia Ora, It's hard to believe that I've been alive for 20 years now! I can now say I'm not a teenager! It sounds like everyone has been having an adventure lately (except Dad, sorry Dad your days just don't sound fun. Haha Allguds though). Gram is busy with Grandpa and you all are just all over the place. Anyways, it's been an interesting week. Last P-Day was probably the funnest/meanest P-Day I've had on my mission. We went to a beach and went fishing. We didn't catch anything but we made a "fort" and a fire. In the picture, Elder Lamb (the red haired one) and I were the ones that made the fort out of sticks. It started off as a joke but became serious. It was pretty cool though. Later in the week though I got seriously ill. I couldn't go out for practically 2 days. I was vomitting and had a high fever. I couldn't walk straight. It was the worst I've felt in a very long time. Other than these two things there was nothing special that really happened this week. Oh, haha, I was asked to give a talk on this last Sunday and it was the same week that a General Authority was supposed to come and speak at the ward but something happened and I ended up not speaking and the GA wasn't even there. I was a bit nervous about my talk because the GA was going to be there. Oh well! Elder Rangi and I are still getting along well. We know how to work and have fun at the same time. It's been good though. Today we were planning to climb the mountain in one of the pictures called Little Nick's Head, but it's rainy today so it seems like we might be stuck playing Risk! How fun! Haha, not, but as long as I get to climb it before I leave, I'm fine.Love you all and thank you all for the birthday wishes! Tell the Kunz's and the Olson's thank you as well. Love, Elder Lee

E-Mail Dated 8/6/12

Kia Ora, Today is a beautiful day in Sun City. (Gisborne is also known as Sun City because it is the first place to see the sun in either the world or New Zealand. I can't remember which). The ironic part is that Gisborne has not seen sun until yesterday since I've been here. I spent a week and a half in the rain! It was not fun! But we were able to see miracles this last week. At the beginning of this week we were going to visit a family when my tire went flat. We had to turn around and start walking towards the flat. While we were walking back a couple guys pull up next to us in a car and asks us to come and visit the passenger. His name is D C. When we first talked to him, my companion recognised the name and was told by his last companion that he was a less-active member. We had set up an appointment for this last Thursday. The morning of the appointment we were joking around saying things like, "He's not going to be a member and when we get there he is going to say Elder's, I want to be baptised. I've already been to church a few times and I've got a few kids as well." When we had gone to the appointment he came and met us and told us that he wanted to be baptised and that he had a few kids and he was already giving up smoking, drugs, and drinking. It was a massive miracle. The Lord really does bring people to our paths! Miracles happen in the great New Zealand Auckland Mission! I love you all. It was very gutting when I heard that Abby died, but it's a stage of life. too bad we can't have our pets sealed to us in the temple! Haha Jokes! So does Ryan now own a dog? or was it just a random dog? or a dog that you're just looking after? Any ways talk to you next week on my Birthday! I'll be 20! Wish Zach a Happy Birthday for me if you can! Love, Elder Lee

E-Mail Dated 7/30/12

Kia Ora, This has been an interesting week. First, I forgot to tell you all that last Thursday was transfers! It turned out that I got shifted out. So last week I told you about a missionary who came from Gisborne. This week I'm serving in his ward. It was so weird but exciting. The travel was long but fun. We had our transfers meeting on Thursday which we show up to at about 10 and then it starts at 11. After the meeting we went to the Wendy's down the street for lunch before we embarked on our long journey to the South. The drive from Auckland to Gisborne usually takes about 7 or so hours. We left at 1-1:30 in the afternoon, but the trip took longer than expected because the trailer was slowing us down. We stopped in Whakatane for dinner with a member family that the Zone Leaders knew. After that we began again on our journey and when we were getting close to the gorge which means another 2 or so hours drive it was about 8:30 and so we didn't want to risk going through and not being back before 10:30 at the latest. We were told by our AP's to go back to Whakatane and stay with the missionaries there for the night. We got up early the next morning and began again at 6. We got to Gisborne at about 8:30 in the morning. It was a lot of fun experiences. There was so much scenery on the way too so I got a good amount of pictures. My new companion is Elder Rangi. He is Cook Island but was born in New Zealand and raised in Australia. He is crack-up. We are bringing the miracles to Gisborne. (Gisborne is usually known as exile because most people spend ages here and there isn't usually a lot of success but we are going to change that). The last week has been a lot of fun. But it's sad to hear that Grandpa hurt himself again. I attached some pictures of the gorge and of the trip down. Ofa Atu, Elder Lee

E-Mail Dated 7/23/12

Kia Ora, This week has been a not too good week. We were able to have a few good days but we also had some bad ones. We had a ward activity on Friday Night and so we took some investigators and had a lot of fun. The activity was Zumba and Karaoke. It was really funny so see some of the members up doing zumba and also our investigators. The members even had me sing a song so I sang Jason Mraz "I'm Yours." It probably wasn't the best decision but it was fun. I think that God punished me for sinning that night when I woke up half way through the night to throw up. It was not a good day on Saturday. I felt so sick and couldn't do anything. I couldn't even eat anything. We had a few trade-offs also through out the week. We went with the Zone Leaders on Wednesday afternoon for a lesson. We also had a trade-off in the evening with the ward to go out and invite everyone to our Ward conference yesterday. We then had a trade-off on Thursday with the MTC missionaries. We were with them for most of the day. I was with a missionary named Elder Villiamu who was from Wellington and my companion was with an Elder Veae who was from Gisbourne (the southern most part of our mission). It's funny though because they were both called to serve here. It's weird to think that we will see them again. Our ward conference yesterday was pretty good though. Our Bishop and Stake President got up and spoke about Family Responsibilities. It was rather enjoyable. Unfortunately everyone that we have had set for this entire month has fallen through for one reason or another. It's sad but I guess it's the Lord's will for us to suffer for a period of time. Hope everything is going well back home. Ofa Atu, Elder Lee

E-Mail 7/16/12

Kia Ora, How is everyone doing? Sounds like it's been a busy week. It's been a busy week here as well. Haha, well, as busy as it can really get. We went on a couple trade-offs this week. We went with our Zone Leaders on Wednesday. It was good. We were able to really stretch ourselves. We have been working on listening with love. Love is so important. It's the single greatest commandment. Who would have guessed it would be so influential in bringing people into Jesus Christ's Church? As we listened with love we were able to understand their concerns and help them to overcome them and feel comfortable, even on the street. We also went on trade-off with our district leader on Saturday. It was productive trade-off. We were able to go and see heaps of people and we had a big miracle in the evening. The last person that we talked to on our way to trading back was a guy named T. We invited him to come to church the next day and he accepted. When we went by the next morning and we knocked on the door, he was just putting his shoes on and so he came to church! AT church we got to teach him quite a bit. We taught him the P.O.S., Resto, and the Gospel, and the Word of Wisdom. It was pretty big. We found out that he actually lived in a lot of different foster homes and so he used to go to our church with one of the families he lived with. We invited him to be baptised and he agreed. He is going to be baptised on the 28th of this month. We are so excited because he is very sincere. We also had a fireside last night which was really good. It was one of the missionary firesides for all of the missionaries in Auckland to bring their investigators. I got to see some old companions and some members from my last ward. It was really good. It was a pretty good week. Hopefully we can keep our sets and have a baptism this Saturday for A (M's son). Hope all is well back home though. Tell everyone I say hello. Ofa Atu, Elder Lee

E-Mail Dated 7/9/12

Kia Ora, What all has changed? It sounds like heaps! This week has been another hard week. We have been helping our investigators but it's so hard to get the ward to help. We can only do so much in this work. I still stay happy and cheerful but it is hard when you do all you can and nothing seems to come of it. We did get to have some fun times this week though. We watched a movie called "Mountain of the Lord" with some of our recent converts. They loved it so much that they asked to get a copy and so we got it for them the next day. We love them so much. I am so happy for them because they are planning to go to the temple as soon as they can. There wasn't really any thing to report. Oh and I have found out that I am lactose intolerant. Dad- when you go are you still going to be able to email? I can't remember. Love you all. Praying for you. Hope everything is going well back home. Ofa Atu, Elder Lee Life here isn't crazy pretty much at all. The craziest it ever gets is when you have to plan like 3 different groups to meet throughout the week and sus it all out. (Sus is what we say when we want to say sort). Also, I did hear about the storm but I didn't hear really how bad it was. I just heard that it happened. We went into a member's home one time to give a blessing and it was on the news and I was like, "That's right next to my house!" I'm not actually sure where exactly it was but I knew it was in Virginia. I can't believe that Brandon's an Elder! He doesn't act old enough

E-Mail Dated 7/2/12

Hello Everyone, This week has been a really good week. We were able to see heaps of miracles. We were able to set a total of 7 people for baptism in the month of July. It was so exciting to see the people accept the invitation. The only sad part is that they don't come to church so they can't qualify for the day that they are set for. We were able to work well with the members this last week and so we taught a lot more with the members and were able to have more visits with them. One of the biggest miracles this week was that S is back! He's the one who we had found and set for that same weekend we met him because he was baptised in 1975 but was never confirmed. So we set him for this next Saturday. It was a really good week for teaching but it almost seems like it doesn't lead to an end when they don't come to church. We do everything we can but they just never come. It's a sad thing but there's nothing that we can do about it. It's all in God's hands. I was sick this week end. It was no good. I just came down with a cold. I hate having to blow my nose constantly. There's not much to tell this week because nothing really happened, but I hope that you all had a good week. I love you and pray for you. Ofa Atu, Elder Lee

E-Mail Dated 6/25/12

Kia Ora, It sounds like the race was fun Dad. I don't think I would have even attempted it. But good luck doing the COPE course now. This was a very productive week. We were able to have many miracles as we also had two trade-offs this week, and gave our ward a training on how to do missionary work basically. We went on trade-off on Wednesday evening with the Zone Leaders and we were able to learn so much and to make the most of every opportunity. I was left with the commitment to find specific fellowship for each of our investigators. So far I have found this to be a challenge with our ward. At times our ward is very unwilling to help us, but I feel the training we gave yesterday was very productive though. I feel they really felt the Spirit and even the spirit of missionary work. After the training we had our MCM and the members were providing us with heaps of part-member families that have people that are ready to be baptised. We are looking forward to saving souls weekly in July! I also went on trade-off with our District Leader this last Friday and we were able to see heaps of miracles. As we would talk with everyone we would be able to teach them at their door and be able to set them for baptism. It's now our job to make sure they come to church to experience the blessings of the Sacrament and feel the Spirit. We are excited for this week because we plan on going and seeing all these people that are ready to be taught and baptised in July. We also had a baptism on Saturday. S got baptised and he was so happy. It was cool because he said that when he was going into the water he felt like crying but he held it back. He got confirmed yesterday and received the Aaronic Priesthood. It was so cool to see. The only sad part that the only people there were the people who were participating in the program. It was maybe a total of 9 or 10 people including us. But other than that it was a great week. Hope everything is going well back home. Love you all. Ofa Atu, Elder Lee