Monday, January 27, 2014


Hey, so we've been progressing with our deaf investigator, Sister C., and we had an awesome lesson with her last Saturday. We had been looking, for over a month, to find a restoration movie with Chinese subtitles, but they don't exist... The church already translated the restoration movie into Chinese, so there are no subtitles... kind of a problem if your investigator is deaf. So, we got together with Brother Tang, who is awesome. We asked him if he could translate the whole movie, while it was playing, for her into sign language... he said it would be really hard, but he would try. The reason we've wanted to do it so badly is cuz she works really well with visual aids (which isn't surprising) and we just weren't sure how solid her testimony or even knowledge of the restoration really was, cuz it's the first lesson so we taught it a long time ago and were just getting to know her, how to teach her, translation and all that stuff. We knew she had a strong testimony in Christ but we were pretty sure if we were missionaries from any other Christian church who had members that could translate into sign language she would come.. so we really wanted to have her watch the restoration DVD cuz it's awesome. So, anyways, he said he would do his best. We started out kind of rough and throughout the movie we had to pause, so he could catch up. She seemed really interested and was paying attention. At the end we felt a prompting to watch a short Mormon message, (this one did have subtitles luckily) it was the Elder Holland testimony of the Book of Mormon, one of the most powerful testimonies ever recorded, in my opinion, and a great Mormon message. I invite all to watch it and every other Mormon message, they are awesome! Anyways, we watched that because the Restoration DVD doesn't really explain the Book of Mormon in detail, and it doesn't say what happened to Joseph Smith. We watched that and afterwards bore a simple sign language testimony. Then she started to try and explain what she felt in sign language, but she couldn't really express it all. She started to cry and then told us that she understands more now about the importance of the Book of Mormon. She has been reading it and has told us she feels good when she reads it, but now she understands why. It was the first time that has ever happened on my mission. Though it may not seem like a big deal to some, for those who only get that a couple times their whole mission, it was pretty special to me. Anyways, it was a good lesson.

We are going to teach a lesson today, on p-day, because an investigator is leaving town for the New year and will be in China until the 8th of February. We want to see her before she leaves. She's come a long way, before she was a strong Buddhist, but she believes in Christ now, we are just working a baptismal date... she says she wants to learn more fist before committing to anything. We haven't taught the Word of Wisdom yet, which can kill investigators.. not drinking tea here is like not eating rice.. every restaurant instead of bringing out water first like they do in America, they bring out tea... so pray for her please, her name is Sister H. We also are going to a new years festival thing in Victoria park with another investigator. Chinese New Year is in full swing, it's pretty cool to see.
Last Monday we were also able to go on a hike which was really fun and also really hard. I'll send some pics, I sent some to Chase, too. It kicked my butt man.. I'm so out of shape, haha. There was one section that was 1,000 step stairs. We definitely underestimated what that entailed, haha Anyways, keep the faith, never quit, and just keep swimming.

Love you,
Elder Jay

Victoria Park is a public park in Hong Kong, named after Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom.
It is located in Causeway Bay, on the north of the Hong Kong island.


Monday, January 13, 2014


If nothing else I submit that Hong Kong, because of all the pollution, has some of the prettiest sunsets over the ocean.

My comp eating the neck of some kind of bird, I forgot which kind, but i think it's goose, or turkey...

Hey! So, I'm doing ok. Christmas was good. Yeah, the members gave us a lot of food on the Sunday before Christmas, so that was cool. Ummm, yeah they celebrate it [Christmas], but it's not as big as Chinese New Years (Feb 1). It's kind of like Thanksgiving and Christmas in the states. In China, Christmas is like how we celebrate Thanksgiving here, and their Chinese New Year is how big Christmas is in the states... I don't know if that made sense.. Most people don't know the reason for Christmas, but it's a good opportunity to bring it up; nice conversation starter. They do have some beautiful lights, though. Down in TST they have a light show on all the skyscrapers, it's cool. 

My investigators are doing well. Some are progressing better than others. We found a new investigator who had met with missionaries a long time ago and was willing to come to church, so we're hoping he will continue to progress. A-wayne still hasn't accepted a baptismal date but is coming to church and reading the Book of Mormon. Finding here in Aberdeen is better than in Kam Tin. We normally at the least can talk to people, even if they aren't interested. We normally walk up and down the prominon, just along the coast of this park by our house. People are more free and relaxed, more willing to talk. We have good days and bad days. We went for 6 hours the other day and didn't get anything but yelled at a couple times which isn't super fun. But other times we've found new investigators. 

Haha my apartment... it's a little smaller than the one in Kam Tin, but there are only 4 of us instead of 6. It's about the size of the living room at home, not including the kitchen or anything, just the room where the TV is, haha. I see pictures of my house back home and wonder how I ever had so much room... We could have a whole zone live in our house! The cool part is we live right on top of a grocery store and everything is way closer on the island than in the new t's. Before, we had to go to two different areas outside our own area to buy groceries and email, which took forever. 

The weather is good, hasn't really been raining but cloudy most of the time. Not super cold, but for some reason, I think cuz it's a wet cold, my bones are just always cold, haha. But I like it better than the summer. I remember the summer weather and am not looking forward to it... my language is improving.. still frustratingly slow. I don't know if I'll ever be really comfortable with it. There are few missionaries who actually go home who are completely comfortable in any situation with their Chinese. This isn't like a Spanish mission where after 6 months you're good to go.. but I plan on being one of those missionaries who has "waht gei" (dominating) Chinese by the time I get back. 

English class is ok. Sometimes we get up to like 7-8 people and other weeks it's like 2.. other areas in the mission are pulling like 20 people a week, so we gotta step it up.. Our Asia area presidency's wife, Sister Wong, has been working on a new curriculum that should be released in the next little bit, so we're excited. We also just found out that we are going to the duel language name badges. The only mission in the world with two languages on the badge. It will have both English and Chinese, so that will be cool. Well, that's awesome Brandon is a Deacon! Sounds like everything is going ok. Thank you for keeping me posted and sending pictures, it means a lot. Love you guys, keep the faith, never quit.

Love, Elder Mahk.

Thursday, January 9, 2014


Cool skyscraper in Central

Wow, that's a lot going on, but it sounds like the same stuff that was going on before I left, haha. I've been praying for Kelly. We went to the temple today, and I put her name on the prayer roll, too, so hopefully those prayers reach it to the other side of the world. That stinks you couldn't ski. The Hobbit looks good, though. I live with a kid who loves all the Lord of the Rings stuff. We saw an ad for it on a bus, and he got a little trunky, haha. The temple was cool, though. The session this time was in English, but we had people from Mongolia and Thailand there. They get translations though, so they were fine. I did a name for the Thai guy. It was pretty cool. I saw the greenhouse, that looks pretty cool, and now a chicken coop, wow! You'll have a farm by the time I get back. Yeah, sorry I didn't write much last week. I'm sorry I don't have super cool crazy deep amazon conversion stories... Most of my days are spent walking around trying to find people to teach. I don't know why so many people are reading the blog. Kelly must be adding some cool stuff after I write, haha. 

One of our investigators, though, who we're hoping will get baptized on the 16th of February is doing really well. She's the one I was telling you about who is deaf. It's been hard to teach her, but she is awesome. Really suuuuper smart. She knows sign language in like 4 different countries. She's been teaching us Chinese sign language which I'm sure will be super useful when I get back, haha. I can say a prayer though, and teach most of a lesson in sign language, it's not too bad. 

She said last week that when she reads the Book of Mormon she gets a really good feeling which was awesome. That's the first time I've heard that from an investigator. Most people are either too lazy to read the Book of Mormon or afraid cuz they think it's the devils door book. (bad translation..) She is always super happy which inspires me. She told us that she could hear fine up until she turned 3 years old, then she had some kind of bad fever and could never hear again. She's been divorced and has been left to raise two kids by herself.. she told us that at one point she was thinking of suicide, which I would have never thought coming from her cuz she's so happy. It's pretty awesome to be involved in the conversion. Well, not really her conversion, she was already converted. Super prepared. And the way that we found her was completely the Lord's work. We got fonged (like stiffed, or dropped or canceled on, I can't remember what you call it) one day and decided to just try and find in the area, and we ran into her but couldn't communicate, so we just gave her a flyer and forgot about it. Then three weeks later she showed up to a missionary fireside that a member, who was her kids teacher, invited her to and we met her again. Since then she's been golden. Even bringing one of her friends to meet with us on Saturday, who is also deaf. We're working with a deaf less active too, so we've decided to just be sign language missionaries from now on, haha. Anyways, it's been a miracle. 

Wanchai LDS Chapel
Oh, so before I forget, I want to thank all those who sent me a card or gift on Christmas. It means a lot thank you. Kelly, I got your package today thanks, haha, it's awesome. We also went on district leader, zone leader exchanges a couple weeks ago, and I was able to work with Elder Grosbeck from Orem, Utah. He's way big into skiing, so we got along really well. But we also were able to do something pretty cool. We have an International branch in Wanchai where a lot of the Filipinos go, but they are mostly all maids, and a lot of them don't have Sunday off. So, in that branch they have sacrament every day of the week. We were able to bless and pass the sacrament on Saturday which I thought was cool. 

We also tracted into an awesome little Buddha shrine the other day. We were walking in this park that follows the coast, watching the huge shipping liners pass, and I saw a couple Buddha statues which I thought were cool, then a little further some more and a little further, and I realized there had to be thousands of them. It was pretty cool. They have temples all over that are always burning stuff, so I recognized the smell before I saw the temple, but this one was different. It was cool. I took pictures I can try and send them. Then right afterwards, we were in the exercise place of the park, and there were a bunch of old people just kinda sitting around (which is basically EVERYWHERE in Hong Kong)... I'm convinced there are more people over the age of 80 in Hong Kong per square foot than on any other place on the planet! They are super healthy. It's hard to tell their age cuz Asians look like they're 12 years old even when they're
like 40 until one morning they wake up and BOOOM. PoPo.. (grandma) haha, and they look 143 years old. It's funny cuz to call an old lady a PoPo is a sign of respect.. and they love it when you try and guess their age, and then they tell you.. I'm not sure why, but they are really proud of how old they are, haha. Anyways, we were in the exercise section of this park and this old Gung Gung (grandpa) limps up to the pull up bar and just stares at it for a second... and I'm like.. ok. gotta see what's going on here.. so then he busts out like 12 solid real pullups, gets down, and limps away... Hahaha I thought it was pretty awesome. Reminded me of Grandpa Mikesell. He wasn't interested, but a nice guy. Well, I hope that everything stays good at home. I love you all. Keep the faith. Never give up. 


Elder Mahk