Sunday, October 20, 2013

Week 61--October 14-20, 2013

October 14 was a holiday in Hong Kong similar to Memorial Day in the United States. The temple was open to allow the Filipino sisters the opportunity to attend and us the opportunity to serve. We attended our branch activity. We had just studied about the Martin and Willie Handcart Companies in Sunday School so we showed the movie Ephraim's Rescue and had popcorn, pop,  and Hershey's Kisses. The sisters loved the movie. It made all of us thankful for our individual trials rather than those of others.

Tuesday began with the Area Presidency devotional that is simulcast to all the service centers in Asia. The presenter was Elder Funk. He shared some of the things they had been instructed on in Salt Lake City during their meetings.  He also shared two stories of missionaries from India where he had been mission president. One was of a young man who was a top student in his high school and received a full scholarship to a school in Coimbatore. Because there are units of the Church in Coimbatore there were missionaries there. This young man was introduced to the Gospel and joined the Church. After graduating from college he decided he wanted to serve a mission. He went to Bangalore to work for a year to save money to pay for his mission and to give money to his family for their support while he was on his mission.

The YSA committee made the first presentation of the document we have working on to the Area Presidency. While they discuss it we will continue to polish what we have done.

The weather has cooled off so that we can start to walk the Promenade again.

Tom has been working on getting the printers and computers to talk to each other in the Wan Chai and Homantin buildings. We appreciate the help of the district councilman who has been assigned to help with the computers.

We are excited for the arrival of the new product from the Family History Department--"My Family: Stories That Bring Us Together" booklet. We feel it will be a real benefit to the members in Asia who have limited or no access to computers for the recording of their family stories. In anticipation of the roll out of this booklet Elder Wilson asked us to compose a letter that will instruct Asia area Church leaders on to present the booklet. It will be a fifth Sunday combined meeting for all members 12 and up. Tom spent Friday morning working on the letter. After Sisters' Institute we critiqued it together and then sent it to our Area Manager for his input before we give it to Elder Wilson.

Saturday we had a Senior couple activity, the first one in several months. We went to the Wong Tai Sin temple. It is one of the most beautiful and well maintained that we have seen in Hong Kong.

 The entrance to the temple.
 In one area of the temple grounds are Chinese zodiac statutes for the year of your birth. Tom is with his statute which is the Pig which is also this year.
 Garnalee is year of the tiger.
 Very colorful Chinese lanterns.
One of the things that many of  the people come to the temple for is to practice kau cim which  is shake a bamboo container full of sticks that have a number on each one. The container is shaken until one of the sticks falls out. The stick is then taken to a window where the person is given a piece of paper with the same number on it.  The paper is then taken to fortune teller who will interpret the fortune for the person.
 The Moon Gate at the entrance to the garden behind the temple.

Below is a beautiful waterfall contained within the garden. Notice the skyscrapers that completely surround the temple grounds.

 In the garden area is a pool of coy fish.

And in another area is a pool of turtles. The turtles enjoy the morning sun as they sun themselves on the rock.

We had a special conference from Salt Lake City that was broadcast to all 18 countries in Asia where there are units of the Church. Elder Hales, Elder Holland, Elder Evans, and Sister Stevens addressed us. Elder Holland has been given the assignment to oversee the work in Asia replacing Elder Oaks. The messages all focused on missionary work.

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