Elder Matthew Gummow

Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas 2013

Here is a picture of our Christmas Skype with Elder Gummow. (He has headphones in his ears because he is skyping from a computer in a convenience store).  His sister and brother in law were able to skype in - he called when we were talking to Sara - his sister serving a mission in Taipei, but it was against her rules to talk to him, so we had to finish up with her call before we could focus on his. (We had a few technical difficulties in getting the group skype to work, but it was great to talk to him!  He had a white Christmas (a baptism on Christmas Day).  He was amazed at all the growth and changes in his younger brother and sister.  He got to talk to his extended family since we skyped him from his grandparents house and he sounds happy and older somehow.  He mentioned a dropbox account with pictures, but he never sent us a link so we can't log into it.

Here is a picture of the "Merry Christmas" Banner many of you helped participate in!  He loved it!

Hello Family,

Hey sorry - this email will be a little shorter than normal.  I spent most of the time emailing today working on Dropbox.  It's still not perfect but it's super convenient and you guys can see most of the pictures I've taken on mission now!  Also you can load the ones you took on the new camera!

Crazy I feel like I woke up a little this week to how much different everything is now that a whole year has gone by on my mission.  This week numerous reminders happened.  First was the skype - Bryanna and Daniel's voices have completely changed! It's so crazy and Daniel is a guitar master now too.  What happened there?

This week I also had new comments on how much different I am from when I left for the MTC.  Physical Appearance wise at least.  the people that see the old pictures says that I'm too skinny now!  and that I look more tired!  Elder Jiang say that I look completely different from the picture I took before I left for the MTC.  It kind of scares me, but I guess that's what a mission does to you.

My trainee is awesome, so pumped for the work it's crazy.  He loves talking and bearing his testimony.  Overcoming obstacles and putting his whole heart into the work.  He's going to start leading the area a couple days next week, he's already ready for it.  I think he's going to have an awesome mission.

It's nice to have him around because it's a new motivation to be more obedient and more diligent.  Sometimes it's kind of over the top though and well...it's just funny.  I love this guy.

He's also my first Taiwanese Companion so I'm hoping that my Chinese will get better in this move call. Also I hope to be able to help his English.

Weeks are just blinking by now, I need to make some more goals for this next year. Time is too short and I've got to make the best of what's left.  I love the mormon message on not turning back this year, so good.


It was really good talking to you guys this Christmas.  I always love seeing the family again.  Although it was weird this time, I almost forgot Bryanna's name for a second and Daniel sounded like he was Uncle Greg or something.  Not meaning I don't think about you guys or anything, just mainly the changes were a lot.

It was a good Christmas though. That seventeen year old, he's so awesome, maybe the whole reason I came on a mission, to help him.  We never taught him at all, well once.  But he was in a different area so we had to give him over to the other Elders.  He is the most active member I've ever met though.

I'll tell you more about the progress of the area here next week though.  This week has been awesome having a new trainee - he brings miracles to the area.

Love You Guys,  Your the best Mom and Dad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   Both Grandmas and Grandpas too..(I will send them thank you notes)!!  Bryanna and Daniel - jiayou!!  You guys are maturing so fast, just make sure to make time for the Gospel. It is definitely the most important knowledge in this world and if you want a sure testimony of it you have to work for it!

Elder Gummow

PS oh and most people call me wenzhanglao, or wenkaishui (warm water)  I actually have a lot of nicknames.

I got the letters too - and Grandma and Grandpa's emails - they were awesome!  Say "Thank you so much" to them!!!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Training! Christmas Mission Activity

Here are some pictures that were posted on the Taichung Mission Blog of Elder Gummow from their Christmas Mission Activity and a Christmas tree in Taichung.  We are excited to get the phone calls from our missionaries this week, but still aren't exactly sure when they are calling.  We never received an email from Sara this week (maybe they switched their P-day around) and Matt presented another option which we said we would like to do, but he got off the computer we think before he got our reply.  I guess we will just be prepared for both options.


Merry Christmas from Taiwan!

What a surprising and interesting Christmas!  This was one of the most interesting weeks of my mission. It started on Monday.  After emailing we got a call from the President.  I was surprised to get a call from him at a such a random time and we were both worried why he was calling.  I answered and for the first couple minutes President just asked questions about how our area was and how everything is going.  

Then he asked me if I would be willing to train, starting Thursday and the Elder W would have to move out Wednesday Night!!!  

So right now Elder Ward is gone. He moved to a small island on off the coast of Taiwan and now I have a brand new companion. Elder J is his name, he's a Taiwanese from Taipei. Actually, I think he's from the same stake that Sara is serving in right now. 

He pretty great guy, and his English is really good.  Already a really good teacher and he's super fired- up and excited for missionary work too! It's pretty awesome!  I feel so bad - this would be a critical week to send pictures to you guys, but I couldn't find my camera this morning, I'll try and send pictures on Wednesday before I Skype.

Also I was thinking since Elder W is not here, would you guys rather talk on Wednesday or Thursday?  I can do both - it just depends on what best for you guys, I don't want to mess up your party.

This week the Christmas Party was great, I got to see all of our district again, as well as old companions and old district members.  It was a pretty great reunion and it was great to see old friends.  I feel old now going there though since most of the missionaries there are newer and I've never met them.  Weird feeling.

This week M came to English Class, we haven't really seen him since though -he had to go to his Grandma's while she got surgery.  He's doing great still though.  We taught him about Faith last week and he was super accepting of all of it, really willing to put in more study of the Gospel.  

That's about it for this week.  Getting excited for Christmas, you can meet Elder J and speak Chinese with him. He's great.  Love You Guys!!!

Elder Gummow

Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas in Zhanhua

Here is a picture I found of a Christmas Tree somewhere in the central Taichung area. Elder Gummow seems to be enjoying the holidays in Taiwan this year.  Last year he was in the Gaoxiong area and loved it there, but was going through culture changes, having recently arrived.  We are looking forward to his Christmas call but are still working out times for sure.

"Hello Family!!!!

I got the Christmas Package!!!  Super excited to get it! Do I have to wait till Christmas to open all the wrapped packages??

This week was pretty decent, nothing's really special but it's great being a missionary during the holidays. There's so many good activities and even though we are halfway around the world the spirit of Christmas is the same.

This week the highlights:  M... (Our Investigator) is doing awesome, he said he's been praying ever night and he feels God is listening and answering his prayers.  He's says he already has Faith in Christ and when we talked about Baptism and Repentance, he's like..."sounds really awesome!".  

This week as well we had some cool new people including a person from mainland China!!!  His name is A... and he's a friend of M....'s - super cool guy.  He's here for a month and a half studying college and he's super excited and willing to hear about the Gospel.  

This week was fun too, one night we had too many appointments so we got to go on splits with the members in our ward.  I got to go with a newer member to the Church while Elder Ward and his member visited an investigators.  It was so cool and the members were SO happy to help out. 

This upcoming week we have our missionary activity, super excited I haven't seen some missionaries since the last activity and it'll be cool to catch up on missionary experiences.  Plus we get to eat at an all you can eat Steak House.

Love You Family!  Hope that Christmas preparations go well!!"

Monday, December 9, 2013

Christmas - Move Call

Elder Gummow had move calls this week, but he was thrilled to be staying in his area for Christmas and with his same companion!  Here are some pictures of Zhanghua, the area where they are serving that I found.

This week was awesome, I have to keep the summary a little short though in order to save time to write the essays.

This week we had a huge miracle.  During English Proselyting, an Elder ran into this guy that was willing to come to Church.  He's in our area, and he came that night to English.  He is the most prepared person I have ever met.  Almost like God tapped him on the shoulder and told him it was time for him to get baptized.  He is on fire...for example his first time in coming to Church he stood up twice to give comments.  The first time was to say that he was here to understand God's truth, the second was to share the testimony he had after learning the truths that were taught.  After he heard the First Vision, he said it shocked him, and gave him a special power (Holy Ghost).

This week ended with a bang as we had tons of people coming to Church.  We invited people, they invited their friends and it seemed everyone that we committed to come to Church actually came, and they were all super willing to learn.  This was a good week for sure.

So we also had move call this week.  Elder W and I are staying together!!!!  I'm super pumped too, Elder W is super diligent and focused so we have really good unity in the work and I feel like we work at the top of our game together and balance each other out really well.  It'll be a blast having Christmas together - you can meet him!!!  

I love this area too, love the missionaries in the district, our investigators, our leaders, the ward.  This is going to be an awesome Christmas!! 

It's great to hear about the holidays back home and the snow and stuff.  People always ask me if I miss it, and to be honest, I do.  But being here serving it's definitely work the sacrifice and I'm willing to wait.  It's my last Christmas on a mission!!!

Oh also, this week we had a baptism!  There is an RC in our ward whose child got baptized this week. The whole family came!

We hope that the Mom will be next and that will complete the whole family!!!!

Love You Family!!!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thankful/ A visit from Elder Funk

 Here is a picture from the Taichung mission blog! I believe it was from last week when Elder Funk came to tour the mission and met with the Zones in Matt's area.  Elder Gummow had an exceptional week this week and is looking forward to another baptism this coming weekend.  :)


Wow this week was amazing and there is so much, so so much I can be grateful for.  I feel like God really picked us up and set up the holidays this week to bless us.  

This week I'll try and make it short, but there's a lot that happened. First off - starting the week was Elder Funk, a newer general seventy came to visit us, for a mission tour.  It was a great meeting; all about working with the Holy Ghost and working with the ward.  It's exciting being a missionary at this time because the works been really changing and progress all around this Hastening the Work of Salvation thing. I think it's something that Taiwan really needs too and his totally ready for.

When the General Authority came I had the really awesome opportunity of being one of the select few to interview with him.  It was a great experience too, the General Authorities are so completely in tune with the Spirit, it's crazy.  The interview was really short probably 5-10 minutes, but in that time - through the Spirit-he was able to totally assess my situation as a missionary and then tell me what I needed to hear.  Really grew my testimony that our leaders are inspired in this Church.

The next thing...probably was that following Thursday, THANKSGIVING -  We have been struggling trying to find investigators lately, but as we went out that day we talked to everyone in our path. It didn't seem that anyone we ran into was interested though.  We went back to have practice for our musical number in the Thanksgiving Activity.  "Count Your Many Blessings"  When we were practicing, we got a call from this random number.  As he answered he called me by name, turns out that he was someone that we had contacted earlier and left our number with him.  Probably the only person we left a number with.  He called us to say that he could come to Thanksgiving activity that night though.  Turns out he's super awesome and super interested in learning about the Church!

The next  thing was that even though we didn't have tons of time for proselyting this week, we still were able to have the best week ever and there was really good progression in our area.  We have a baptism next week too!!  There is a RC in our a ward that has a really cute son that is going to get baptized next week.  We went over to their house a couple times this week, it was a super fun experience too.  The Dad fed us his mom's soup, twice.  The first one had Chicken Heart and small snails in it, the second was pig's heart...which was actually pretty decent.  It was definitely an interesting experience.  It's all worth it in the end!

Well, love you family... I wish I had more pictures to send sorry.  I don't know if I'll be able to finish the essays this week - I hope that's okay.  I guess in the end it's all God's will anyway.  I got your letter this week Mom, November 30th perfect timing.  Loved the new CD! It is nice being able to listen to Christmas music again.  I love the new scripture chain thing too.  I'm just not sure how it works.  Am I supposed to fold it and put it with the tree or just read one a day?  

Thanks for all your support and love family.  I can really feel it even though I'm halfway around the world.  You guys are the best!

Elder Gummow"

Monday, November 25, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Elder Gummow is well and working hard.  He sent us a picture of his shoes - well worn and holey/holy!  Looks like he hasn't been sitting around much.  We were told before he left, that shoes wouldn't need to be all that heavy duty, because they are mostly on bikes, but apparently that is not completely accurate! 

"Happy Thanksgiving Family!!!!

That was another fast week.  It feels like no time at all that I was just emailing, crazy a little.  So good to hear all that happened last week...Did you guys get to talk a lot with Chase at the reception?  How is he?  

This week was a lot like last but still in a good way because every week is good in missionary work, there is just so many things that happen.  This week was focused on finding again. These past weeks we have been finding a lot, but most of the people we have found either became referrals to missionaries outside of our area or they ended up not meeting with us again.  So we just hit the roads...oh ya!

It so worth it though, there has been lots of good that happened from all this work, dedication, and effort we put in everyday.  That guy I talked about last week, the 17-year old kid.  He set a baptismal date this week with the other elders.  He came to English and Church too and he says he loves the atmosphere and the spirit he feels at Church.  I'm so glad he can now feel of the Spirit and grow and be a part of it.

Also, we have one baptism coming up, soon, a part-member kid that Elder W and I have been teaching since the beginning of this move call.  He's 9 years-old and crazy, but also crazy smart.  We're just really excited for his mom to get baptized too so their whole family can be sealed together.  That would be an awesome event.

This week I found that with Thanksgiving coming up I am just becoming so grateful for a bunch of things.  Feels like naturally the spirit has taken me in that direction.  I found that my faith was again strengthened as we had an incredibly miracle this week.  Oh ya so this story is crazy:  

First, it starts out Elder W contacted this old guy at a park one day.  The guy was really nice and sat down with us and we talked about the Gospel with him for a little.  He was willing to talk, but he wasn't very interested in coming to Church or being baptized etc.  We exchanged information though and told him we'd call him up next time we had activities.

Next, that following Wednesday night on our way back from English Class.  The weirdest thing happens.  For the first time on my mission, a five year old kid walks up to us as we are waiting at the light.  His pockets are full of candy or something and his arms are filled with stuff.  But he holds out his hand and introduces himself.  Asks who we are and then asks for one of our Church flyers.  After talking about the experience Elder Ward and I figure it was one of the three nephites disguised as a 5-year old.

The craziest part though is that on our list of phone numbers we called up the old guy, his name is LIDiXiong and he says he can come to Church the next day.  He comes the next day and walks in and sure enough the random five-year old is with him too.  We had no idea they were related!!  They craziest part is that the old guy only came that day because the 5-Year Old kid wanted to go.  He brought his grandpa to Church and now they are going to start coming every week!!!  Crazy Coincidence!!!

It was nice to see this week that God really has his hand in this work, and that he has some humor as well.  Also that there are kids prepared as young as 5-years old.  We figure he's going to be an Area President of Taiwan or something.  What a cool conversion story that would be!

But ya that's about it for the week.  Still loving the finding, it's really a dynamic activity and we always have new places to go, new things to try etc.  This week we have two activities we're looking forward to - a Thanksgiving activity and also a seventy is coming tomorrow to meet with us.

Love you Family, Thanks so much for the letter this week. I'm sorry but the pictures...I asked but they still haven't come.  I'll send a couple this week though. Also I need new shoes, I already took out money for them, I hope that's okay.  I think it's not though since the ATM said I overdrafted.  I'm sorry.  Also what time were you guys thinking about Skyping for Christmas this year?

Oh also Elder B my trainer is getting married?!!  And 3rd companion Elder M is too!!  SO CRAZY!!

Love You Family,

Elder Gummow"

Sunday, November 17, 2013


Here is Elder Gummow's email!  I was thinking it was a bit short, but then I remembered he just emailed on Wednesday, so it has only been a few days since we heard from him.  We are grateful for his emails - whether they are long or short!

Hello! Family!

This week I still don't have pictures.  Sorry :( I asked for them last week expecting they'd come but they haven't yet, maybe soon though.  I totally forgot to bring a camera to the last two events so I don't have any pictures of my own to show off.  Sorry Mom.

This week was great, we hit our goal for finding new investigators which was probably most important and what we put most of our efforts into doing lately.  It's interesting looking back at how we found those investigators and where they came from, and thinking about why they were willing to meet with us.  One thing I found most interesting looking back was that it mostly all came from turning to God and relying on him.  I feel every time we prayed sincerely, and then worked until we felt we were too tired to keep working, that's when we were really rewarded.  

I was thinking about it last week and I think that's why I find contacting so fun and rewarding now is that my perspective of it has changed.  I really liked Elder Holland's talk about how there our people with arms hanging down that need lifting, broken hearts that need healing etc.  When I can keep perspective then it drives me with a huge purpose knowing how much a testimony of the Gospel can help them.

An example of this, one of the new investigators that came to Church this week...We met him outside a college and it was the shortest contact ever, just a quick couple of questions and then asked him if he could come to Church.  He quickly agreed too but he seemed really cold about it and from the quick response I thought that he was lying to us and wouldn't come.  (This happens a lot :))  But on Saturday he showed up, and then Sunday the following day he came to Church. The funny thing is that during all those times he played it really cool, not ever showing much.  But I feel like his life needs a lot right now and because of his trials he's going through he wants to come to Church to change his life.  When we shared with him he listened super intently and was really soaking it all up.

Also we met with this guitarist guy in a band and had a lesson with him.  He's pretty sweet and it was really easy to connect with him.  I've always wanted to help a guitarist get baptized.  His name is xxxx.

That was about it for this week. We're going to try and mix it up next week because the finding is taking a small toll on us.  Hopefully, we'll get some good progressing investigators this next week. 

Love You Family, 

Also I was thinking if there is other piano or guitar sheet music you have I would love to have it to learn on P-day's.

Love You Family,  Elder Gummow

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Temple, Baptisms, "Find and Seek"

We were happy to receive Elder Gummow's email.  It was a couple of days later than usual so we assumed he got to attend the Temple in Taipei.  We were correct!  I have this secret hope that one of these times he will get to see Sister Sara Gummow there.  What are the chances?

Hello Family,

Happy Birthday Daniel!  I totally forgot it was your sixteenth birthday until this week.  That's so crazy, sixteen is super old and mature I can't believe you've aged that much already.  

Happy Thanksgiving as well!  It's great to see the Neighbor Lane pictures.  Kind of weird too, it's seems like every one is getting married soon or on missions, at least out of the people in our age group.  Nick is looking good as well.

This week we had a good time lots of really good miracles and progress in our area.  Our area is slowly growing more and more so that is really good.  We really thankful for all the help God's is giving us.  We've really been blessed with the spirit as well as lots of energy as we've gone out and shared the Gospel.

First and best person I think we were able to find this week is a L......DiXiong.  We found him at a park contacting.  His experience is really special - at first he didn't want to have anything with what we were saying.  He said he was too busy and that he didn't have time for religion.  But Elder W and I decided to exercise some faith to share the first vision with him, afterwards something sparked his interest and he was then super willing to meet.  We met with him a couple days later and he was really really awesome.  He said that lately in his life things have felt really plain and that he feels like he's not doing anything of importance and that there has to be something more.  He says that he really has not a lot of people to be friends with and that he needed to be able to talk with God and tell him his problems.  Really good feeling to know that we we're able to help him with the problems he has been facing in his life.

Other awesome news.  B and S both got baptized!!!!!  I got President's permission to go back to my area last week since it's just right next door and I was able to see Stan's baptism as well as pictures from B's.  I don't have the pictures now but I'll make sure they get sent to me soon.  S's baptism was amazing though. He was super happy and excited at everyone's attendance and shared a really great testimony.  He also got a bunch of his friends to come and his brother which was really exciting for the ward there.  I'm hoping S's brother is the next one to be baptized.

B's baptism was awesome too I hear.  All in English - which was exciting for the single's ward there.

That was about the highlights.  Otherwise we are still just going out there finding, which has been really fun actually.  Somehow I've grown to love the finding.  It's like there is so much potential out there so many prepared people. We just have to find them through the spirit.  Like a massive "find and seek" game.  Plus getting to meet new people is really great!

Oh also cool experience (literally) - my pants ripped while we were proselyting.  There are downs sometimes about proselyting in dress pants:)

Christmas, I really don't have that much I want or need. I really just want new music, I've kind of gotten tired of the stuff I have.  So like a bunch of new music would be awesome.  Oh also I'm running out of deodorant.  That's about it    - I pulled out the cookbook that you made for me before the mission and realized that most of it I can make already so I'm going to start making some stuff in it...CREPES!

Love You Family  Your the Best!

Elder Gummow
Pictures next week Sorry!
Oh and this week was temple week, sorry that's why I'm writing so late.

Monday, November 4, 2013

The New World

Elder Gummow had to keep his email short because of lack of time, but he seems happy and almost well (trying to get over a bad cough).  I wonder how many flat tires they go through in a week....

"This week was a great one! We don't have a lot of time today because Elder W's tire popped and we are behind time now- so I have to keep it a little short today.  

I think the main event this week that was really good is that in this one week I was able to meet almost all of the members especially the leaders of our ward.  Elder W had us set up with visits to the members so we were able to visit a large portion of the families in our ward.  This ward is amazing too! I never seen such a converted, active, and willing to serve ward as this.  The member's testimonies here are on fire and they are so willing to help and serve us and the Lord.

This week also we had a good time finding. This area has a lot of good people that were recently baptized, a lot of really good recent converts but as of now, we are focused on finding some more new good investigators.  We saw a lot of miracles through our efforts as well.  For example we were contacting home Sunday night when Elder W and I see this guy speed by us on a bicycle.  He was pretty buff and looked really athletic so Elder W and I speed up on our bikes to catch up with him and chat (Elder W is a wrestler). He was awesome too! Just really happy and had this glow about him.  Eventually, we told him about our activities and he was super excited to hear about our English Class and told us he'd come for sure.  The only down part is that he's out of our area.

I just got a letter from S, I wasn't able to go to the baptism last week because of meetings.  However, S ended up changing his baptism date to this Saturday November 8th, and said that I have to come.  So for sure we'll make it to his baptism this week.  He's soooo cool!

On the downside, I've had a bad cough for about 2 weeks now :(  But it should be getting better soon.

Well that's really the highlights I'll definitely update you guys on Elder Ward and the area next week.

Love You Family!!!!

Elder Gummow"

Monday, October 28, 2013

Move Call! Oct 27, 2013

Elder Gummow's prediction was correct!  He is in a new area now.  He writes it as "Zhanghua", but another spelling is "Changhua" so you can see it is very near Taichung.  Change and new growth in store for him.  This time last year he was arriving on the island. So much has happened since then!!

Move Call Day!!!!!

The move call came last week and it was decided, I'm going too, well I guess I'm already at ZHANGHUA!!!  It was a suprise for me since Zhanghua is literally the area next door to mine, pretty crazy.  There are even a lot of roads that are the same as in the area I was in before.  It's definitely a change of scenery and perspective, and I'm with a really awesome missionary Elder W from Tennessee.  He's super pumped for the work, has been here for 2 move calls already.  This area is really great too, I hear the ward is one of the best and it used to be the Zone Leader's area so it's been really well taken care of.  It's a lot of responsibility but I'm also very grateful for the opportunity. 

This last week was really sad though, I was not prepared to leave Zhongming, there was so many awesome things going on and so many people I grew to love there.  This morning we went and ate food with B, he passed his interview and is getting baptized this week.  He is an awesome awesome investigator though and I was so glad to teach him.  Hopefully I'll be able to go back and see him get baptized this week since the other Chapel is so close.  S also asked me if I could come back and see his baptism.  He is incredibly awesome too.

This week I'm super pumped to be in a new area, it looks like we're going to do a lot of new finding and building up in this week or two which I really love.  There is so much potential in this area and I want to find it.

Last Elder W, I'll send you a picture of him next week.  He's solid though - hard worker, good contacter. He is full of energy, a wrestler. His testimony is solid too, and he knows the bible super well for a 19-year old. 

Love you family, it was really good to hear from you this week, except that I'm super jealous about the Zucchini Brownie Donuts, can you send some in the mail for me? :)  I can't believe I hit my year mark on the island next week too, that's so crazy.  I feel like I haven't become where I need to be yet, and the time is winding down super fast, it's scary.  Last I am so happy Tyler's going on a mission!! That is so cool, I'm so pumped for him, I keep imagining him as a missionary and I think he would be super solid, people are going to love him and he will be able to grow so much.  Hope you have a happy halloween family.


 Here is a picture of his district in Zhongming!  He was sad to leave them all!

This is a drawing of Elder Gummow that was given to him by one of his investigators

Monday, October 21, 2013

Hastening the Work Oct 20, 2013

Elder Gummow had another busy week full of meetings.  One of them he was asked to speak at - in Chinese of course and in front of the whole stake - a whole different level of giving talks!  He is looking forward to getting back to their usual schedule of missionary work this week before move calls!

"This week was a lot of meetings again, I feel like we haven't been able to get a ton of missionary work in lately because of all these meeting!  This week is the last week of our move call though and we're looking forward to no meetings this week so we can do some real finding and build up our area really well before this move call ends.  There hasn't been any real decision yet but I'm pretty sure I'll be moving this week.  I have been in this area for about 6 months now so I think that the time has come, we'll see this Saturday for sure though.

This week as far as special meeting, we had Elder Holland and Elder Hale speaks to us in stake conference. They gave a special broadcast to the people of Asia about "Hastening the Work" which has been a huge emphasis here lately.  Huge, - like Saturday night we also had a stake adults meeting, and then this Wednesday they asked me if I could give a talk in it.  I'm not really sure why, just somehow fate fell on me and I was one of the 2 missionaries in our stake that got to give a talk on members and missionary work.   It was definitely an interesting and good learning experience.  Using Chinese to give a talk is a different experience for sure - but, got through it and I just hope that what I said was able to be understood and that the members understand better how much we want to help and serve them.  I was really nervous to talk though.

All's good in Zhongming as usual though.  Today, for our P-Day we are going to go play basketball in our stake center. I haven't played basketball in like 6 months  - it's crazy!  I need to take more pictures too...sorry family. I'll try and get some from Elder B - he has some good ones. I'm so sorry I totally forgot to bring the recording today. I brought it last time but our computer ran out of time and I wasn't able to put it in.  I really feel bad...just know it will come next week for sure, plus a lot of pictures.

Good to hear from you this week family.  This week a thing I think I learned is that I really need to add fuel to my work as they say.  I feel like I've got pretty comfortable here and that there is lots that I need to improve on still.  This week will be an opportunity to do so for sure.  Thank you so much for all your support and help family, your the best!!!!

Happy Halloween!!

Elder Gummow"

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Sports and General Conference, Oct 13, 2013

We just returned from our fall break getaway to Arizona to visit family.  Elder Gummow had a great week and they were able to do some missionary work in different ways from the usual. The pictures are reposted from the mission blog.  So fun to see him!

"Dear Family,

 Hello this week, looks like your week was a sunny and happy as it was over here.  This week we had some great new activities and experiences as we had the Sport's Activity as well as the opportunity to watch GENERAL CONFERENCE!!! click here to listen to conference

General Conference was definitely the highlight of this week as we were able to see some investigators come that needed to hear the message of the conference as well as ourselves were able to gain needed revelation and hear the testimonies of the Apostles of our time.

I was so amazed hearing the Apostles and the Prophets speak this time as I realized that they really were the Apostles and Prophets of this dispensation.  As I look at them now I feel stunned as I realize how much there messages are like Pauls and Peter's of old but so focused to what we need as of now.  My favorites talks this conference; Elder Holland's, Elder Ballard's, and that guy that talked on exclamation points (Elder S. Gifford Nielson), they were all really good with focuses on member-missionary work! (Exclamation Point)  This was definitely the best conference ever!

The big sport event thing was awesome this week too.  It didn't feel much like normal missionary work, but it was really fun.  We had a investigator family come as well as a part-member family come and they both had good times I think.  The best was being able to play basketball and football with them.  No one here plays football, but they all love it.
Other than this I was also impressed at the effect the talks had on our investigators.  Our 2 most progressed investigators were able to come this week and see the Conference talks, and after the were so grateful to us for inviting them.  They kept saying over and over again how much it helped them and helped strengthen their faith in Christ.  

On the downside of the week I had a bad cold that came on after the Sport's Event.  It must've been from exercizing too much in too hot of weather or something.  Either way it was pretty stressful getting through the rest of the weeks activities and I was more than ever grateful for the time to rest in General Conference.  I was able to get healthy again really fast because of this too. 

This week was great and looking forward to using the things learned from conference in this following wee's events too.  Love You Family, so good to hear about the vacation last week! 

Elder Gummow"