Taiwan, Taichung Mission

Taiwan, Taichung Mission

Monday, August 24, 2015

TAIWAN HERE I COME!

Dear family and friends,

The last week was nuts, I can't believe that I'll be getting up before 4 tomorrow to get on a flight! It was a really great week and I feel like I went out with a bang. Sorry this email could be a tad short, I still need to do all my packing... (I know Mom's going to be happy to hear that) haha I don't really know how its going to work..

We had a devotional from Elder Echo Hawk of the 70 on Tuesday, it was inspiring to hear his conversion story. It's been really hard to focus this final week, but our district really tried to work on it. I really feel like my time at the MTC has been utilized to the fullest. I definitely could have worked harder, and I now have much better study habits, but the growth I've made is unreal. I haven't been perfect, but I'm light years ahead of where I was 9 weeks ago. No regrets, I loved it here :) The last week was fun because I really felt like my ability to learn and study has improved. I learned so much faster this week! On Friday we had an in field orientation that took up most of the day. It was weird, because it was with all the departing missionaries going anywhere. It did not feel normal to do all the role plays in English, but also much easier haha. Our teacher showed us somemormon.org profile videos of LDS people in Taiwan, and it was quite fast and hard to follow. I'm so glad we're going somewhere where the people love Americans though, because it will be much easier to learn from understanding people. So the highlight of the week was probably playing the piano in sacrament meeting. (Mom maybe this makes up for my packing procrastination). I wasn't very good, but it was very fun to play, and I got through three hymns. Our district also sang, so this basically guaranteed that I wouldn't need to speak in sacrament meeting. I think they still felt bad for me from going up at the wrong time for the prayer, and then my piano skills must have just put it over the edge :) 

So yes, it was a successful week. I have so many mixed emotions about going to Taiwan, but mostly excitement. It is going to be SO hard, but I'm going to learn even more than I did at the MTC, and so excited to see what challenges the Lord throws my way. I can't wait to get out there to the missionaries and people I've grown to love so much, even though I haven't even met them yet! Thanks for all of the support that I have gotten while I've been here. I have felt so loved by so many people, and it's really strengthened me. Next time I write this, I'm probably going to have some pretty funny/cool/embarrassing stories to tell and I'll be writing it from some random internet cafe in Taiwan. I love you all so much, and love hearing about all the awesome things back home. I miss you, but know I'm on the Lord's errand. I'm having the time of my life being a missionary, and wish I could do it for even longer. I know the time is going to fly by, and am STOKED to get started! 

Love,
Elder Gilbert

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