Elder Matthew Gummow

Monday, July 14, 2014

21 now!

Dear Family!!!

Thanks so much!!!!!  Thanks for the video!!!  I laughed so much when I saw, I still have no idea what you guys were doing or why :)  And why the little Buddhist bow at the end????

This week was a good one and a great progress for this area!  It's super sweet to have Elder Bean back!  Missed that guy! I feel after this week that there has been no pause at all and Elder Bean and I have just been companions together for this whole time.

I think something cool is this time after the other mission experiences I realize how good of a companionship Elder Bean and I make.  He's super devoted to learning how we can continue to grow and improve and we work super well together in that way.  It helps when you have a companion that has that kind of drive so then you guys can push each other instead of just you pushing yourself.

This week had a bunch of miracles!  It was crazy I feel like from when Elder Bean came here we just started have tons of miracles!  Just like what happened when we were in Zhongming, he just brings a lot of faith into this area.

This week on Wednesday we were contacting in the city and Elder Bean and I run into this guy and this lady.  I immediately recognized the face but only vaguely...so I asked him...are you Mr. W  ?  He was so surprised!!  and then looked at me a little closer and realized who I was!  I was the missionary that contacted him two years ago in Zuoying!!!  I totally remembered who he was too.  He is the first guy that I contacted that came to Church in Zuoying.  He was super cool too!!!  I remember meeting with him, he said that his family is almost all Christian, when I met him he was having a bad day but I helped him feel happier so he was willing to meet.  I couldn't believe it I was wondering about him after all these years but it was such a huge miracle to meet him on the streets again in a city of millions of people!!! the odds were like .001% that I would see him again! He better get baptized!!!

This week the other miracle!  J.... passed his interview and he is doing awesome and totally prepared for baptism!!!  He's looking good for his service this Saturday and everybody loves the guy!!

Also Brother Q!!  We taught him the word of wisdom this week and he decided right then and there that he was quitting smoking!!  That was it for him!!!  So we went outside and I took his cigarettes!  He hasn't smoked for 5 days now!!!  So proud of him and he's looking great for baptism this 26th!!!  Love the guy so much and he's been such a great example to me.

My birthday was cool.  That day I was actually sick, but it was okay I took some Advil and it was all cool.  We actually had a missionary day in our stake that day so we had two young men that worked with us all day. It was fun and that was the day Johnson passed his interview so I can't complain it - was a pretty fulfilling Saturday!!!

Jerome's movie was super awesome too, that was so cool to see everyone and I was really happy that Jerome was here this year to celebrate with us, it was a good birthday!!

Link to the Surprise Birthday Video

Oh and a question!  What Chinese class am I signed up for right now??

Good to hear from you family!!! Love YOU!!!!!

Elder "Warm Water Gummow"

Monday, July 7, 2014

Last transfer! 21st Birthday on Saturday!

Elder Gummow turns 21 on July 12!  I can't believe he is getting so old!  He was just a teenager when he left!  He has 6 weeks before returning home to Utah and I am sure it will be bitter sweet.  We continue to pray for his success in all and that he can survive the heat and humidity!  Below is a picture of his he and his companion that just finished his mission and the young man that he met in Douliu that was baptized last week.




Dear Family!!!!

WOW what a week!!  I can't believe it Elder C...   is gone!  He finished packing up last night and then that was it. He took off this morning after taking a couple pictures and now he's on his way to Taichung right now.  I'm gonna miss the man.  We had a really good move call together.  Saw a bunch of success, a ton of spiritual experiences and just a lot of good things happened.  It was a good move call and he was a good companion.  I have to be honest - it made me a bit trunky seeing him going, as well as a little bit anxious. There is only 6 weeks left of my mission.  It's such a short time and a move call flies by in mission time.  I only have this much time to finish serving the Lord with all that I've got!!!

You'll never guess who my new companion is!!!!  Oh man it's so crazy!!  Elder Bean is my new zone leader companion!!!!  My first real junior companion and now he's coming back here to Gaoxiong to finish things.  It's really a nice full circle for my mission.  I love Elder Bean as a companion, he's a super righteous, super obedient missionary, so we're going to have tons of fun this move call!!!.  I'm super pumped.  I still can't believe it.

This week went pretty well and smooth.  We had some good progression with our investigators.  J..... is back and meeting with us regularly!  He hopefully will be getting baptized this next, next week.  We finished the law of tithing with him this week so he's good with all the commandments and he's got a really good testimony.  He's sharing with his whole family and his son is going to come here next week so hopefully we can get the whole family involved.  He's really had a change of heart.

Q....... is doing really good to.  This week we taught him about coming to Church on Sunday.  He normally has work the night before so he sleeps through the afternoon but we asked him to come and he was super willing to change.  This week he made it to church!!!!  Although the only problem is he was 2 hours late :)  that's okay though he'll be on time next week.

I'm looking forward to this last move call!  It should be a good end to the mission and I"m excited to leave my last mark on Taiwan and this mission.  It's really an honor to be a missionary.  I love having the chance to help other missionaries and help others in their circumstances and to meet so many awesome investigators. 

Birthday this week -
I'm excited for it! J...... should be getting his interview this Saturday and I'll probably go get something to eat with Jerome.  Although it feels pretty like a normal day having a Birthday in Taiwan on a mission.  

Well love you guys a ton and so grateful for the mail this week!  Great to hear all the news!  Love You Guys!!!!

Elder Gummow  

Monday, June 30, 2014

100th post!!

Family!

Wow this week was a crazy one!! But it was great to hear all the good news today!!!!  Sounds like a lot of good things happened this week!!  Looks like a lot of hope for the future!!  Glad to hear the family's doing well!  Love them and praying for them!!!

This week was,....well it looked really good at the start but then it ended really just okay in the end.  This week we got attacked on all fronts, my companion got sick, some problems with the ward, investigators not showing up to appointments.  I don't know why but ever since I've been here it's been harder to do missionary work.  

But apart from this I know how important it is to KEEP THE FAITH !!!  There is still definitely a bunch of good things going on and it's important to keep focused on what's ahead and keep pushing forward.  If anything at all we saw some great new investigators this week, as well as a self-contact that looks really really cool!!

It's the last week for my companion here. I sure hope he gets feeling better for his last week here. love the guy and it will be really sad to see him go.  He's an awesome missionary and we had a really good move call together!

The great news was to hear about G....!  I'm so glad that he got baptized!!!  We saw him this Monday and he was doing awesome!  I could tell that the Gospel has changed him so much and I was so happy to see it in him!!  He was so much more confident and happy!

His situation...He was actually a former investigator from a couple years ago...I don't know why the missionaries stopped teaching him.  He's loved Christianity his whole life though and was super open and willing to the idea of baptism.  He was of course a little scared about it all at first but after coming a couple times to Church and feeling the spirit there and meeting members he progressed really quickly.  He's a super awesome guy!!!

Q.... is doing awesome.  He's been progressing wonderfully and we're still hoping for his baptism on the 18 of July!!  Also J.... is looking really good too, we met with him this Monday and he has been praying and reading with his family!  He took 2 Book of Mormons from us last time so he could start reading with his family too.  He has definitely been touched by the Spirit!

So things are looking up for these next couple weeks and we are really excited for this last week with Elder Cornilles.  It's time for the last sprint to the finish line!!

Love You Family!!!!

Elder Gummow

Monday, June 23, 2014

Learning about faith - visualize!

Hello Family!

Wow thanks for the great update this week!  That was so crazy to see Chase's email and see where he is now and how much he's changed already.  He seems like a stud missionary!  I can't believe he's the only white guy in his District too, that's so crazy!! Do you by chance have his email?  I would love to write the guy.

Glad to hear things are looking better and looking more up.  It was quite a shock last week to hear the news but prayers and focusing on the work have helped a lot and this week turned out really great!  Tons of miracles which was really good.

This week was awesome because we were able to get 2 new goals and some new investigators which was super sweet!  We've been trying really hard this last week to improve our area and see things like this happen and it finally did!

It feels good.  We were kind of in a rut there for a bit, but it feels like we've finally pulled out of it and now we're back on the path that God's wants us to be.

This week a cool experience.  We had this new investigator his name is Q......Lea.  He taught me a lot about faith this week.  I was super surprised when we first met with him.  His body is covered with tattoos and his nails are long and his hair is died a different color.  At first I was just thinking...this guy is just going to meet with us once, he's just interested in Americans or something like that.  But I immediately realized that was a horrible thought and remembered President Monson's talk about this missionary that had tons of success on his mission because everyone he talked to he imagined them dressed in white.  So i did the same thing.  It was crazy!  We met with him on Tuesday then he came to Church on Sunday for the full time.  We watched the Joseph Smith movie and he felt the spirit and we started talking about Baptism.  He says that he has lot of sins and mistakes that he feels bad for and he wants to be able to get rid of them.  He wants a new start to his life. The spirit was sooooo incredibly strong and his desire was super strong!  At the end, He basically set up his own date in the end 7/18 so less than a month away!

The next was another manifestation of the Spirit and how it can change people.  Johnson an investigator we have right now.  He says that every time he comes to Church he's really happy and he doesn't know why.  We talked to him about the spirit and he asked us if he had been baptized in another Church does he need to get baptized again.  We talked about baptism with him and he's willing to.  His date is also for the 18th

This week Brother X... didn't end up getting baptized :( It was a little bummer.  He says he wants to now but he wants his mother to support him first.  So we're still working with him.  He'll get baptized eventually.  His wife did get baptized this week though which is great news!!!  It was a great baptismal service and she gave an amazing talk on her conversion process.  Super Awesome Family!!!

This week was great and it's great to hear from you guys!!!  Love You guys and praying for you!!

Elder Gummow

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Father's Day 2014

Family!!
.........

"This week there is not too much to report.  It was a okay week for us here but we're still looking forward to some good improvement in our area.  I know that we just need to work hard and the results will come.  God's just trying to teach us that we need to change in someway and we're trying to work that out. It was the same way as when we we were in Douliu.  Also Elder C is going home soon so we hope to see more success before he goes.

Exchanges have been fun though. This week I was able to have a small reunion as I was able to exchange with Elder J (my trainee) and Elder O (old district member)  they are both super super awesome missionaries and I'm so glad to have a chance to serve with them again.  Elder Jiang is awesome and he has progressed a ton lately, he's really an amazing missionary.  And it was good to be with Elder Ogunbote again, he's a solid missionary and has been having some good success lately.

We saw miracles together.  With Elder O

we met a new family.  They were super awesome. A single dad with his two daughters.  The Dad was hesitant but the two little girls were angels.  We asked the family if they wanted to come to Church and the girls said YES!!! Which convinced the Dad that they had to go.  I love the way the Lord works sometimes.

Things are still good lately and we're looking forward to this next week as there is a lot of potential for next week.  We hope things work out!  Pray for us!!

Love You Family and I hope that all is well!  My heart really reaches out to you guys at this time!!!

Elder Gummow

PS  Here is the new suit I had made

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Zone Training

Family!!!  Wasai!!

I can't believe what happened to Dad!!  I hope he's okay!  Keep me updated on him!

So Sweet to hear Chase is going out this week!!!!  I'm so excited for him!!!!  He's going to be a super awesome missionary!!  Do you have his weekly letter, I would love to get it and hear about how things are going for him!!!
   

This week was good.  I feel like I'm still adjusting to be a Zone Leader so there is a bunch I'm still getting used to, exchanges, holding Zone Conferences, and a bunch of other little tasks.  It's good for me though, being out of my comfort zone and needing to be continually changing and improving.

Photo
Exchanges are the best though!  This week I was able to exchanges with 2 of my favorite missionaries.  Elder Gish which is actually Zach Gish's cousin and then an Elder Kim.  We came on the island together.  They are both fantastic missionaries and it was really good to be able to learn from them and understand how to better help this Zone!!

A HUGE MIRACLE this week, Jerome has so much faith it's crazy.  As soon as I got back to Gaoxiong he started coming back to Church. He had a problem with work on Sundays so he's been applying for new work lately. And guess what HE FOUND A NEW JOB!  It was pretty amazing, Taiwan's economy is not the best right now but he found a new job within a matter of a week and was able to quit his other job so now Sundays he can go to Church.  And he loves the Church here and is starting to make some new good friends. I just hope that he'll be able to keep up the progression.

Matthew from Zhanghua has been progressing really well as well!  He's only been a member for over 4ish months but he's getting the Melchezideck Priesthood in a couple weeks!  I'm so excited for him!!!!!

This week in our area, was pretty good.  We were planning on a baptism this next weekend but our investigator had some questions with Tithing.  We're sure he'll still be good we just need to have more discussion with him, he's just a little worried about it.  So we're postponing the Baptism.

On the good side, there is the X.. family from last week. This week the Elders met with them on exchanges again and the wife commited to a Baptismal Date!!!  She'll be getting baptized in 2 weeks!!! The Dad, we're still working with him too but we hope that he'll commit to the same date too. We going to need to pray a lot for him.

This week, I just love being able to be a Zone Leader - being around all the missionaries and learn from them as well as trying to be a good example and inspire the members of our Zone.  It's hard work and more stressful but I feel a lot of spirit being around these missionaries and have grown to love them a ton!

This week was awesome and we're excited for the weeks to come!  Thanks for the update Mom!  So grateful for your sacrifice and all you do in our behalf!  Your really a super Mom!  Jerome loves you too and wants to be your Son!  I hope that all is going well with trying to help out the family and Dad being sick at the same time!  I'm praying for you!!  Hope Dad gets well soon!!!!  Love You Guys!!!

Elder Gummow

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Gaoxiong!

Elder Gummow is back where he began and loving it - although he is there when the heat will be at its peak!



Hello from Gaoxiong!!

It sounds like you guy might already have a good idea of what's going on from Jerome, I'm not sure...  Let me just say though...He loves you guys so much and is so thankful that he could stay at our house in America.  I think growing up he didn't have a good family life at all, so staying with you guys for week was like a taste of heaven to him.

It's good to be back in gaoxiong!  I'm still getting used to this place and all this stuff but it's nice to be back where I started and seeing that changes that I've have come because of my mission.  It's nice to see Jerome again and help him out.  He hasn't been really active lately but he came back to a part of Church last week so that's really good.  He just need some friends and some people that can support him in this Church!!

The weather is HOT here, last time I was here was in the winter but now it is the summer here and it is a lot different!!  It's probably been over 30 celsius the past week so it's taken a little getting adjusted too.

I figured this is the first new area that I've been to that has good progressing investigators.  It's a zone leader area so it's been taken care of really well.  This week I got to meet L.., he's probably one of the best investigators we have right now and he's probably going to get baptized.  He came to church this week and loves everything about it we just need to work on getting him more friends.

This week we also had a crazy lesson.  We're teaching a family here, the X.. family. The are awesome, a little quiet but super willing to come to church and be a part of the ward.  They are the relief society president's little brother and he is super awesome. Last week we had a lesson with them and had the stake president helped us teach them.  It was crazy - as we were teaching them the stake president started teaching about the role of the Holy Ghost and what it does and at that moment the father of the family just broke up and started bawling.  He was touched super strongly with a incredibly manifestation of the spirit.  It was crazy and I have never seen such a powerful witness of the spirit in others!

The saddest part though is that he still wasn't willing to make a date for baptism.  They are definitely awesome and an awesome family he's just a little worried about some faith problems.  But he knows now this is where his problem is and he's working to gain testimony.  I just really hope that he'll get baptized before this move call ends!!!

It's been a good week though and a lot of new experiences, responsibilities, and things to learn being in this area - most likely the last area of my mission.

Elder C, he's a cool guy.  Super chill - which makes us two really alike and our contacting and teaching methods are both really similar which is nice.  He's going home after this move call so he's a move call older than me in the MTC so I never knew him that well.  He's from Oregon, his dad his a former movie star and entrepreneur which is pretty cool and he loves soccer and basketball.  Over all he's a really good guy and a good missionary.

This week was awesome and I'm just excited for next week.  As the time get less and less I get more and more antsy about using the time well.  It's going super fast!

Love you Family!  Thanks for all you guys do and the support!!!  Nice to hear from you this week!!

Elder Gummow