Monday, April 29, 2013


Mikesell Family!

Hey, I got the flag you sent! Thanks so much, Kelly!! I am GREAT! The language is coming. Sometimes it's hard to see the progress I've made until we go to teach a lesson, and I say things so much easier than I can otherwise. Like for real, it's not that I just start saying things that I don't even know or anything, it's just that everything I've studied comes to my mind, and I'm more comfortable and fluid. I still have a hard time, but I just have to put my faith in the Lord.

Yes, everything is based off Preach My Gospel, so make sure Alec knows it inside and out, especially his purpose.

My favorite thing to eat here is probably the pancake on a stick which is just a corn dog but with a sausage inside. It's good, and the orange chicken is a big hit when it comes around. My least favorite... they have like four or five options, so if I don't like something, I just go get something else, haha. My companion is Elder Durham or Duhug Juenglouh. He's from Salt Lake. He's studying computer engineering to be a video game designer. He knows a lot about video games, anime and stuff and doesn't play any sports. He's pretty quiet, but I love him. We are like total opposites, but he is always positive and patient when I'm not. We get along really well. Yes, we'll be comps the whole time during the MTC. Our district has 5 elders (us and a tripanionship) and a pair of sisters, so 7 total. There are 2 other districts of 8 in our canto zone, so in all 24 canto speakers. The most at the MTC at one time in history. We are still the only two in our room, everyone else is jealous, haha. We go do a temple session every Monday morning and a temple grounds walk on Sunday afternoon.

Our zone is trying to S.Y.L. (speak your language) as much as possible, but we ended up just translating funny American sayings like "we do what we do!!" and "LIKE A BOSS" haha which happen to be Ngohdeih jouh matyeh ngohdeih jouh! and Hochi Boisi!! I might have spelled those wrong, though, but anywayyyys.

I'm doing well and should be shipping out in about 4 and a half weeks!!

The biggest thing I've learned this week is to try and rely wholly on the Lord because I physically can't do it alone. Love you all! Keep the faith! Stay strong and Ga Yauh!! (add oil) = (goodluck)

Monday, April 22, 2013


"So, I'm doing laundry, right?... I grab what I think are my clothes, throw them in my bag and head home. As I start to put stuff away, I realize that some of these white shirts don't look familiar and they are the wrong sizes. At this point, I'm like, "Uh, elder... we need to go. Now." We RUN back to the laundry room, and my plan was to just slip them back into the dryer that I found them in, but it was being used! I didn't know what to do, haha. One of the elders in our district was there and I whispered to him, "Hey, so, I've got someones laundry, and I don't know what to do." He's like, "Oh! It was you! Some guy has been looking for his stuff and yelling, "Who is pranking me?!" He overheard us talking and said "WHO WAS IT!!! WHO STOLE MY LAUNDRY??!!" So, I just played along and said, "Gotcha!! hahaha". It was funny. I gave him his laundry back but couldn't find my laundry! We looked for a while and then finally after being convinced that someone stole MY laundry, I found my stuff in the washing machine... I had never switched it haha! Just thought that was a funny story.

Oh, also another one. One of the elders in our zone, Elder Howell has his girlfriend writing him. The DL's (District Leaders) go get everybody's mail and then distribute it to the elders in their district. The DL's get his mail and see he got a letter from his girlfriend. They thought it would be funny to borrow a sister's lipstick and kiss it so he thinks his girlfriend did it, haha. So, Elder Martinez kisses the letter and we all thought that was pretty funny, but then someone got the even better idea of heading to the lamination center and getting the sealed letter laminated hahahahahahahahah. The lamination guys thought it was hilarious too! We gave it to him and said, "Hey, we know you love getting letters from your girlfriend, so we laminated this one so you'll always have it to remember her by :)". He was like "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!" and spends 20 minutes cutting and peeling the lamination off, so he can kiss the lipstick on the letter hahahahahahaha. He wasn't very amused when we told him he basically kissed Elder Martinez.

We got to hear from Elder Richard G. Scott on Tuesday. He spoke on prayer, it was so awesome. Super powerful. Then he gave us an apostolic blessing that those who were learning a foreign language would learn it with ease as they use it to bring others unto Christ. He gave us some other apostolic blessings as well, it was powerful. I totally feel a difference. Then, yesterday, we got to watch the BYU Men's Chorus perform. I wish Alec could have been there, he would have appreciated it more, but it was rad. They are the biggest all male collegiate chorus in the world, which I didn't know, but they performed their new album especially for missionaries. You can download it for free.

Elder Muir and Elder Mikesell MTC April 2013

Our zone leaders and a couple subwano districts in our zone left today :( I'm kind of sad because I love Elder Muir (the Australian that named me Ranga), Elder Call and Elder Johnson, but I got their info, so we can keep in touch. One of the canto boys companionship got called as the new ZL's (zone leaders) and this Wednesday we are getting 22 new missionaries in our zone. 18 sisters and 4 elders... so, ya gotta love them sisters :) There actually is a district of all sisters in the new group. Pretty crazy, it's one of the first of its kind.

Much love to all who read this!!! Thank you so much for the letters and/or packages!! I don't have time to write you all but know that I love and appreciate all you do. Keep the faith. The Lord is hastening His work with or without you, so might as well be on his side. :)

Monday, April 15, 2013


"Leih Hou!! Mahk Gahtihng!!

So, even though the days go
Language Classes

by really slow, they start to morph together, and the week actually went by pretty fast. The language is coming along, slowly but surely. We are on a double investigator schedule now, so we stay busy, haha. I feel like as soon as we get comfortable with something, they throw a curve ball to get us off balance, but we react and adapt according to the Spirit, so that's what it's all about!!

Ranga of the Manimals - Four Square!
Okay, funny story time... Four square here is like March Madness, the Superbowl and the FIFA World Cup all rolled into one. Haha. It's crazy competitive. A few of the Elders from the Filipino districts in our zone, including our zone leaders, Elder Muir (who is from Australia) wear these awesome animal shirts. You know, like the ones rednecks wear. One has a wolf, one has an eagle and another one is a tiger. Anyway, they all play four square and team up on whoever is in the fourth square. They call themselves the Manimals haha. So, I get in and start picking them off one by one and end up staying in the king square for a good amount of time, and finally when I get them all out, everybody claps and cheers, haha, so they made me an honorary member of the Manimals. On a side note, the Australian Elder calls me Ranga, cuz that's what they call gingers (red heads) in Australia because of the red hair on orangutans haha. So, I'm the Ranga of the Manimals of four square!!! (So, if any of you see an orangutan t-shirt, send it my way!! Pleaseeeee!!!) Haha!

Things have been really good. We had a devotional by the director of Church Missionary advertising. That was awesome. The Church is pushing the campaign which is designed to help the extra missionaries hasten the Lord's work. We just passed the 3,000 mark here at the MTC and are projected to top over 5,000 by the summer. They are renting BYU dorms from across the street to accommodate. In conference we were told we have over 65,000 in the field and are projected to creep up into 80,000 by summer and some are saying 100,000 by the end of the year. Not only are there more missionaries,we are learning the language, how to teach the gospel and understand our true purpose faster than any other group before us. Our teacher told us when she found out they were shortening the MTC stay from 12 weeks to 8 weeks, she complained it would be impossible to condense what we needed to learn into the amount of time given. Her last group (Mary Moody's) learned faster, adapted better, were more sensitive to the Spirit and better prepared to enter the field than any other 12 week group. 

If the Lord says we can learn canto in 8 weeks, then we can learn canto in 8 weeks. It He told us to learn it in 3 days, we would. Not from our own strength, but in the strength and faith in the Lord, we can do all things. I witness that, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Well, keep the faith! And prepare to be a missionary before you get here! It's so important. The more you know before you get here, the less of the Lord's time you will waste learning here and out in the field.

I'll send some pics for you!! Hey, so one last thing, I don't get much time on the computers, so tell everybody who sent me a letter through sorry if I did not email them directly. I'll try to write them letters, though. Love you! Bye!"

MTC April 2013


Monday, April 8, 2013


"Leh hou Mikesell Clan!! In Chinese they can't pronounce English names, so they give us Chinese names and mine is Mohk. You can tell all your friends that your last name in Chinese is Mohk. Haha. Monday is my P-day, and that is the day I can email and stuff...

The mission is awesome so far. My district and zones are full of the coolest elders eveaaa, and the canto is coming along slowly but surely. Alec will be glad to hear I joined the choir. It's awesome and the director is super funny. He reminds me of Brian Regan. We saw Vocal Point yesterday for our devotional, and they were CRAZY GOOD. Like the best ever. You should look them up. They are an a cappella band from BYU, and they won a cappella championship last year. It reminded me of Pitch Perfect haha.

Conference was way good too, right?! All about missionary work!!! Represent!!

So, our district has decided we will have a phrase of the day, everyday, and last night we were going to grab some hot pockets and red cream sodas when an elder came out of his room in full footie dinosaur pajamas... like a bossss. He even had a hood that had teeth on it, so Elder Kang was like "Whaaa? That is awesome! I would cuddle him so hard!"
And, thus, the phrase of the day yesterday, haha.

I forgot my camera in the dorms, so I'll have to go get it and send you some of the pictures I've taken. Other than that, I'm doing awesome!

By the way, my comp and I are the only elders in our room, so we took all the extra blankets and pillows and constructed the tent of Lehi, which I dwelt in haha. I love you lots! I'll send those pictures and write anything else I forgot in a real letter to you guys. I love really handwritten letters!!!! Emails are good too, though. :) Be strong, keep the faith!!! Love you!"

Mohk Jeung louh
(elder mikesell)

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


President Stolworthy and Elder Mikesell

After a favorite meal Monday night from BJ's Restaurant consisting of pepperoni pizza, french fries and a chocolate chip pizookie, Justin went to the home of President Stolworthy to be set apart as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. A funny story about this... Justin's little brother, Brandon, was in attendance and was deeply disturbed that Jay was no longer "a part" of our family. He drew this conclusion after the blessing by insisting that Jay was "set a part" from our family and "set apart as a missionary". Much clarification was necessary on the car ride home to convince him that Jay was very much, indeed, still "a part" of our family and what it meant to be "set apart" as a missionary... Justin is officially Elder Mikesell now!

Elder Mikesell with his dad, Sean, at the MTC
Today, Sean drove Elder Mikesell to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah where he will stay for two months learning the Cantonese language. Then he'll be off to China!

Goodbye, Elder Mikesell! We will see you in two years! We know great things will come from you.