Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Letters sent home from the Phillippines

Elder Nielsen

Elder Nielsen

Monday, October 26, 2015

Last Week of Training

Another good week this week. Our investigator Jason's baptism was rescheduled to next Saturday instead of last week, due to our ward having a temple trip last Saturday. But he said that it is okay and he is still very excited to be baptized. He told us that he was thinking about his baptism all last week at work. He is a little nervous but we continue to reassure and comfort him. We met with him on Sunday and reviewed everything and answered any questions or concerns he had. We now look forward to this Saturday for his baptism. 

Or other investigators are continuing to progress too. Sister Lordess is planning on being baptized on November 7 and the Paraiso family is planning on being baptized on the 14. We taught Sister Lordess a lot about temples this week and then in Sunday school class the lesson was on temple marriage. She was a little concerned when the teacher taught in order to be able to enter the highest kingdom in the Celestial Kingdom you have to be married in the temple ( she is a single mom, not living with her husband). We answered her concerns but it seemed like she was still a bit worried because she really wants to reach the highest kingdom. But we need to just take things one at a time with her because first she needs to be baptized, then we can start working on the temple marriage after that. The Paraiso family is doing well. Her husband is always very busy with his job so he is only been able to listen to us a few times, but Sister Paraiso is the one who is really progressing. Every time we teach her she always has the best questions for us. She just really wants to understand and soak everything in. When we answer her questions you can always see how she's starting to understand the gospel more and more every lesson. 

We had Zone Conference last week and I really enjoyed it, I learned a lot and received some good personal revelation. We watched this video clip of these two recent return missionaries teach Brother and Sister Cook  the Restoration in just 4 minutes! They taught in front of the 12 apostles and about 180 mission presidents. It was about the best and most powerful Restoration lesson I have seen, and they did it in for minutes. Afterward Brother and Sister Cook were both in tears. We watched this because it a new thing the Quorum of the 12 wants to incorporate in missionary work to certain teaching situations. After watching those missionaries teach the Restoration in 4 minutes it really inspired me to learn and study the Lessons and the Restoration more fully. Because lately I have been focusing too much attention to teaching and studying in Tagalog but that made me realize I can't even teach the Restoration that effectively in English nor do I know all the lessons completely. So I have committed myself to really learn all the doctrinal points in all the lessons in English first, then during language study and learn the doctrinal points in Tagalog. So my goal, and I want you to follow up with me on this, is to learn and memorize the main points in each of the sections in each lesson, and have my favorite scriptures for each section memorized. I want to do this in English and Tagalog side by side. So by Christmas, I want to have Lessons 1 and 2 done in English and Tagalog. It's going to be a lot to learn but I know in order to be a Preach My Gospel Missionary I have to know the doctrine inside and out. But let me clarify, I'm not going to be giving rote memorized 4 minute lessons, but it says in Preach My Gospel to know and even memorize the Doctrinal points. Because once I know all the doctrine then I let the spirit work through me to know what points to talk about and which ones to say. it's like it said in Where the Red Fern Grows, " I have to meet God half way". If learn and study and do my part to learn the doctrine, God will do his part by giving me the spirit to know what to say. 

And a fun little side note: So they are selling baby quails right now for only 3 pesos. So all the little kids have these baby quails that are about the size of my thumb. I wish we could have pets because they are the cutest little things ever! 

And I will email on Tuesday next week due to Transfers. 

I'm learning how to be a real missionary more and more everyday. Thanks for all the prayers and support. I love you all. 

Elder Nielsen

Monday, October 19, 2015


Uncle Elder Nielsen..  WOOOWEE I'm an UNCLE :D I told Che Che to teach him about donuts so his first word would be just like Dad's, because according to Grandma Nielsen, Old Pop Scott's first word was "donut" ;) 

Another good week this week. Our investigator had his baptismal interview earlier this morning, so now we look forward to next Sunday for his baptism. He is very excited to be baptized. It has been a privilege watching and guiding him as his testimony grew these last two months. This is probably the biggest decision he has made in his life to this point. And we are excited to be able to watch him enter into the waters of baptism and complete his first of the sacred saving ordinances.  

We also plan to finished our lessons with our other progressing investigator this week. She has come so far since our first visit with her. She has completely given up coffee. She proudly stated that she is drinking Swiss Hot chocolate instead. After we taught her about tithing and fast offerings this week ( a hard rule for Filipinos because of poverty), we committed her to paying tithing and fast offerings once she became a member and she said, "Of course!". She loves reading the pamphlets we give her because it is easier for her to understand. Since the Ang Aklat ni Mormon is such deep Tagalog. But she said she reads the Book of Mormon too. We are planning on having her baptism the first week in November.

We also had a level 2 typhoon this week. So it has rained the last 3 days straight. We actually couldn't go out to work last night. We didn't have electricity for a few hours because the rains and the winds, and the floods. So that was pretty exciting!  

Everything else has be going well. Elder Godinez continues to teach me everyday. I really admire his patience with me. He is a great trainer and I'm thankful for the opportunity to be his trainee. 

I am thankful for the opportunity to be a missionary. I've learned so much about this gospel and I just want to keep learning. "I'm [GLAD] they call[ED] me on a mission"

Elder Nielsen

Monday, October 12, 2015

October Conference 2015‏

This week flew by! I felt like nothing really has happened since my last email besides General Conference. Oh and sorry for the late email, we played basketball and board games at the church this morning with our zone. But our investigators are doing great. They are continually progressing and learning more every visit. I've really noticed the spirit in their face and eyes. You can see the spirit working within them and touching their heart. It's easy for us because we aren't teaching them new doctrine, we are just reteaching and reminding them the doctrines they once knew and accepted before this life. Our job is just to teach have the spirit and teach the doctrine simply and then we let the Holy Ghost do the rest. I've been really trying to look at them as my brothers and sisters and not just investigators. I try try to imagine them dressed in white for baptism and the temple. Trying to look at them through our Heavenly Fathers eye's is how will we really come to love our investigators and worry about their eternal salvation. 

Conference. Conference was an absolute delight. Just like Dad said, this was probably the most intently I have ever watched conference and I plan to watch it this intently the rest of my life. I thought it was a very unique conference but I loved every talk. It didn't have too many talks directly about missionaries but every talk has something I need work on in my missionary life. I noticed a lot of talks were about faith, keeping the commandments, Holy Ghost, trust in our Father and Heaven and his chosen leaders and let our lives be molded by our Father and Heaven. Some talks that really stood out to me were by: Randall K. Bennett, Richard J. Maynes, Larry R. Lawrence, Quentin L. Cook, Jeffery R . Holland, Bradley E. Foster, and David A. Bednar. Sorry, it's kinda long, but I really gained and felt something in their talks. But I took Erin's advice and already have them downloaded on a flash drive so I listen to them every morning while I workout. This conference made me realize how much I regret not taking full advantage of the church and all its wonderful resources growing up as a youth. I wasn't focused on the right things and let those valuable years of testimony building slip through my fingers. So, Summer, Carly, and Addi, don't make the same mistakes as me. Read the friends and the New Eras every month, the simple doctrines will remind you of who you really are and what you stand for. Listen to the EFY music so you can have the spirit and be a standard and role model for your friends. They let the worldly influences blind and disguise you from what really important. I'm trying to work extra hard and be extra faithful to make up fro my lost time. We just need to step towards him and he will bless us more than we sacrifice. It doesn't matter how long you've waited or sinned, Heavenly Father and Mother rejoice with even the smallest step towards them. Remember it's not the speed, it's the direction you step that really matters. Improve one thing at a time and your live will be molded by the same hand that created you.  

I really loved the ponderizing talk by Devin G Darrant and I did it this week for our family scripture. The scripture dad chose was perfect with one of my problems I'm working on as a Missionary, which is treasuring up in my heart and mind the words of life continually. I read in a talk "Becoming a Consecrated Missionary" By Tad R. Callister ( you should read it, I'm on my second time through already)  But it talks about putting things on the altar of sacrifice, and it talks about putting everything throughout the day to the Lord. A part I liked and wrote in my planner says; "[a Consecrated Missionary] His eye is riveted to this work.He is like a thoroughbred horse with his blinders on. He races ahead, seeing only track and finish." But it's so hard to keep my thoughts focused and centered on Christ. As we are walking my mind will start to wander and I will think about family, hunting, friends, memories, etc. And I have to push those thoughts out repeatedly throughout the day. But I never I will get better at this the longer I'm out, like Quentin L. Cook said, "Self control is a muscle, the more you use it, the stronger it gets." 

Thanks so much for being such an awesome family. Mom, Elder Holland couldn't have said it any better, I owe my whole life to you, and I know I've caused you stress and pain on countless occasions, I thank you for everything you taught and done for me. And Paps, I thank you for being so in tune with the spirit. Your motivation at the end of each of your letter always fits perfectly for what I'm struggling with and what I need to hear that week, "You must have been a missionary once too." 

I Have so much to work on and improve. But even though I am a thick and hard clay, Our Potter, is patient and will continue to shape my life into the one it needs to be. 

Mahal Kita 
Elder Nielsen 

Monday, October 5, 2015

Down goes Elder Nielsen..‏

First of all, SORRY CARLY, I forgot to say Happy Birthday to you! I even had it marked in my planner! So HAPPY BIRTHDAY CARLY. Secondly, Mosiah 3:19 is my favorite scripture. And not yet mother, but I told my companion and he said we will try it. And ERIN is ENGAGED?! Whaaaaaaat?! Sorry Am Bam.. Try to catch her bouquet at the wedding I guess ;) 

We had another good week this week. We received a referral from a member in our ward this week who wanted us to teach her friend's family. They are the Paraiso family. This family attended our Ward Family Home Evening a week or two earlier. The member was able to be present when we taught the family  this week. The lessons went very well. It was very effective and helpful having that fellow-shipper there in the lessons. She was able to explain some principles more clearly to her friend than we were able to do. It made me realize how crucial a role the fellow-shippers play in the lessons because us as missionaries don't know these investigators lives who we are teaching. But this friend has known these people for a long time and knows all their beliefs, concerns, problems, ect. so she was able to explain the principles in a way she knew they would understand. The fellow-shipper was a RM so she knew how to teach the doctrine to her friend. The family attended church this Sunday and they have been keeping all their reading commitments, so we are excited to work with them more this week. 

We were also able to teach one of recent converts about family history work. He is an elderly man named Arnold Delfin, who is retired so we figured we could teach him and get him started on family history. After our lesson, we left him a My Family Booklet and committed him to try to fill it out as much as he could. Our next visit to our amazement, he filled out practically the whole book! We want to bring him down to the family history room at the church and get him started on it. He truly is such an amazing recent convert. A little background on him, he was baptized my first week here. He's read the whole Book of Moron and Doctrine and covenants and now is rereading them. His ward calling is an "usher" so he just welcomes people at church. So church starts at 8:30, he gets there at 7 a.m in order to organize the hymn books and everything in church. He makes sure he is early so he can greet the people that show up early at 7:30. He is so awesome! 

Besides that everything else has been going well. Our investigators are still coming to church and we are just waiting for after General Conference and stake conference in order to have their baptisms.

So funny story, I had my first mission fall this week.. It was about 8:15 at night and it was raining so hard. I convinced my companion to go to one more lesson. So we got off the jeepnee and it flooding really bad. So my companion runs and jumps on to the sidewalk, so me (being a good trainee and following his example) ran and made the extravagant leap! Except when I landed it wasn't water on the sidewalk, it was mud.. so as you can imagine my feet went out from under me and splat. Wet. Muddy. Elder Nielsen. It must have been quite the sight.. But we still went to the lesson and we committed them to be baptized and they said yes, so there was a positive thing that came out of it ;) 

Sorry the cord for pictures isn't working.. maybe next week. 

Mahal Kita 
Elder Nielsen