Sunday, December 29, 2013

We had a great visit with Elder Weiss via Skype on Christmas Day.
Here is pic of the Parramatta Zone.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Part of something big-learning to be more dignified

From: Joseph Weiss <>
Date: December 16, 2013 at 8:28:10 PM MST
To: Cyndy Weiss <>, Bishop Weiss <>

This week as I prepared a district meeting I noticed something again in PMG about teaching clear concise summaries of restored truth. It gives a very good example of the restoration but I wondered how it could apply to the other lessons. So for district meeting we prepared short summaries that we could share with someone about the first three lessons at a bus stop or wherever you might be. I want to make many of these quick summaries and practice them so that teach and testifying become a second nature thing.

Dad's mission prep class is right on! I took a look at the binder that I made full of DRS' and noticed a page that said, "6 Missionary Skills". Man, Those things are golden. They are the real deal. I hope that by the end of my mission I have mastered those skills.

This week a miracle that I saw was that we had an amazing ward Christmas party with heaps of non-members. We brought our investigators and it was a good time. However, the members did not reach out to the non-members as well as they should have. However the next day in priesthood meeting, the elders Quorum President got up and called the ward out. He invited one of our investigators and brought his wife's grand kids so that the investigators kids would have someone their age. He sat with them and took good care of them and was a perfect example of fellow-shipping. It felt good to hear someone else say it and to feel like someone else understands as well.

Also we went to an appointment with our progressing investigator yesterday and he wasn't there. His phone doesn't work so in an effort to find him we called his sister that came to the Christmas party to see if he was with her and she said no but we did set up and appointment with her! Sometimes the Lord works in mysterious ways. Hopefully we'll have a new investigator!

Today we went to the temple and before got to go to the distribution center. I got the Christmas CD by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir with Bryan Stokes Mitchell! So excited to listen to it. Last sunday a RM from the stake spoke in our ward. Something that he said struck me. He said that what we celebrate at Christmas is that Jesus Chris was born. And what that means is that he kept the promise that he made to us that he would put himself on the line as a sacrifice to save us from our short comings. And his birth was the start of it all. The sign of hope.

I love my savior so much for what he did for me. Christmas is a happy time, but also a quiet time of reflections. That's one thing I'm learning is to be more dignified. I can be pretty spontaneous and quick with words but it's easy to do or say things that don't accurately represent the Savior. I'm trying to act in a more dignified manner because only have 18 months left of being missionary and I'm not getting any younger.

I love the mission so much. I feel so lucky to be here. I don't ever want to go home. I miss my family members but I love the life of a missionary I don't ever want to stop. As a missionary you are somebody. Part of something big. I'm so glad God trust me to help him out.

Love you all so much!

Elder Weiss VI

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Christmas Miracle in the Spanish Ward

From: Joseph Weiss <>
Date: December 8, 2013 at 5:20:04 PM MST

This week I realized that there are specific requirements to meet in order or an action to qualify as a key indicator. Sometimes when you make a contact and teach a small lesson but contact isn't sure when you can come by and so you give up and say "we'll call" then it doesn't add to the New Investigator’s indicator. Afterwards you think, “Man, all we had to do is ask him to think for a little longer and we would've had a return appointment.”

It's kind of silly sometimes when we think that a specific date is such a big deal when all it is, is a date. But when we realize that setting dates a teaching lessons is fulfilling our purpose and is what Jesus Christ would do as a missionary, it makes us happy when we do them. That's what key indicators are. Key Indicators help us indicate whether we are doing the Lord's work in His way. Far from just a check list.

This past Sunday our new investigator came to church. We had a date set for the 28th of December but our bishop interviewed him and together they set the goal to be ready by the 22nd. So we should have a Christmas Miracle in the Spanish ward. David is great! He has such pure desires. On Friday we had a Family Home Evening with him and members of our ward. They embraced him. I've seen the closest investigators I've had to baptism have been the ones that the ward has been the most involved in.

It sounds like we are just trying to manipulate him into joining the church sometimes with trying to get members involved but I thought about it and I realized that Christ's love is showed through us. The way David can feel Jesus Christ love the strongest is by feeling the love from members of Christ's Church. That is way working with members is effective. Not because we manipulate them but because they can feel Christ's love from them which is a fruit of the spirit. And the spirit teaches them all things that they should do.

I know this church is true. The evidence I have seen is undeniable. God loves His children and He wants them back. I have seen His hand reaching out so clearly I cannot mistake it.

This morning during companion study kind of as a joke we took video of ourselves doing role plays and then when back and got the super slow motion replay! haha We are revolutionizing the Mission! Just wait till we get iPad mini's!!! Member presents in the car!!!

Por favor, pick when you want to do the phone call so I can set up where I'm going to go to Skype yous! Mom the questions you sent me are really good!

(Mom note:  Here are the questions I found in a Deseret News article.
What is the grossest thing you have eaten?
What do you make for lunch every day?
Tell us about a family you are working with?
What is your favorite p-day you have had?
What do you love most about your companion?
What is the best advice you have received from your Mission President?)

If you could maybe submit some questions to me and I can think about them and make a plan for what I'm going to say. President asked us to plan it out before time so we utilize the hour we have. So send some questions my way because I'm not sure what to talk about.

Love You all very very much! I hope you can recognize me on the camera. About two months ago I hit my peak weight at like 87kgs which is PHAT! (191 lbs).  I've dropped down to 82ish (181 lbs.) so that's really good but I'm still fatter than when I left. I looked at a picture from two months ago… Whoa, I was CHUBBY!!! But now I eat less and save time!!

Today in studies I learned that the principles in the addiction recovery part of the Word of Wisdom pamphlet and also the Law Chastity pamphlet apply to losing weight as well. Haha, I'm going to become very disciplined. Well that's the plan!

Talk to you later,

Elder Weiss VI

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Roller Coaster

From: Joseph Weiss <>
Date: December 2, 2013 at 6:29:31 PM MST

Will is freaking me out. I hate watching missionaries leave. That is probably the worst thing about the mission. When I think of going home I just see myself sitting on the couch doing nothing because I have no clue what you do in real life.

So we need to start arranging for a time to make a call. Do you want to do it Christmas day or Christmas eve? I can do it any day during December and because there is a day difference it won't be Christmas for one of us. To get to Sydney time change the clock forward three hours and switch the AM to PM or visa versa. If I called at 9 am here it'd be like 6PM there. I'm thinking that's probably best but just let me know your thoughts.

On Sunday we were leaving a less active member's house when a man called out to us in English. We went over and talked to him and found out he is from Chile. He told us he recognized us by our dress and our plaques. He told us his brother worked for two years to earn money to serve a mission for our church. His brother always tried to teach him but he didn't listen.

Two years back his wife died and he very sad and his friend told him if he drank the problems disappear. So he started drinking and smoking. But after two years he is tired of it and he wants to become clean. We taught him the plan of salvation and gave him a book of Mormon and committed him to read. And we committed him to be baptised on the 29th of December and he accepted. This man is so prepared. This is just like German from the District DVDs.

We went back the next day with a member that had to give up alcohol himself when he joined the church. When we arrived he told us he quit smoking. That he went to by more cigarettes and decided he didn't want that anymore. And he said he's not going to buy anymore alcohol. All he had left was one cup left that he was going to drink because it was expensive. That cup was at his side during the lesson and I really wanted him to get rid of it.

We taught the restoration and Word of Wisdom. He told us he doesn't want to drink anymore. He said he would commit to live the word of wisdom after this last cup. But after we closed with a prayer, our member asked if he would like a blessing to help him overcome his desire to drink and he accepted. I was able to give him that blessing and after we closed I asked him, "Can you pour that cup out?" With a little hesitation he said yes and poured it into the bushes.

This man is golden. He has been prepared. From the first lesson he told us he believed our church is true. And in the second he lamented how he wished he would have listened to his brother earlier. He told us he would talk to his sister to see if we could teach her as well.

It is humbling to see how God is working in this ward. My first companion worked in this area for 7 months and got one baptismal date. And he is a very good missionary. Now between the two companionships we could likely have four baptisms in the coming months. The Lord has something to teach us and this ward. The Spanish isn't gone yet. The Lord still has plenty of plans for the people there.

I am so happy to be here another transfer! I love this ward. I love my companion. Everything is so good right now. Man! Such a roller coaster.