Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Dieter F. Uchtdorf, pictured here, is Second Counselor in the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He, along with the church's President Thomas S. Monson and First Counselor Henry D. Eyring, along with the current Twelve Apostles make up the governing leadership of the church. Like the twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ during His ministery on earth, these good and righteous men were also called by Priesthood authority and ordained to those high and holy callings by the power of God and by the laying on of hands and are revered and sustained by the fourteen million members of the church world-wide. Talks by these, and other Prophets of decades past can be found by logging onto the Church web site at
http://www.lds.org/. Find Gospel Library and click on General Conference. You can then select the language that you would like to hear or read the talk in. It is also recorded as a video for those wishing to see the person speaking. After selecting the language you desire it will then make available for you to access General Conference talks by year, topic and the name of the General Authority speaking. I testify that God's words and desires are voiced through these modern-day Prophets today as they were 2000 years ago through the original Disciples of Christ. We know from ancient and modern-day Prophets of our life before our birth, why we came to earth and our eternal life after this mortal existence and that knowledge and assurance is available to you too.

President and Sister Uchtdorf, in two seperate missionary conferences, met with, taught and counseled approximately 300 missionaries in the Taichung and Taipei, Taiwan Missions. Sunday evening they brought a wonderful spirit to a special members' conference in the sports arena in Taipei attended by over 6,000 faithful Taiwan church members and friends who were inspired by the messages shared and the beautiful uplifting music provided by a choir of about 300, accompanied by violins.

President Uchtdorf with his grandsons and a few of the office missionary staff.

Sister Greene and I had the wonderful opportunity of talking with and experiencing the kind and loving spirit of a Prophet of God and we testify that he is in fact one of God's Prophets on earth today.

Thursday, July 8, 2010


One of our missionaries finished his mission about ten days ago and while traveling home he continued serving as a missionary by teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ to those he met. From one of the cities where he had a layover he called in a number of contacts, through the missionary referral network. One young man was Chinese and spoke only Mandarin and was on his way to Iceland, which is part of the Denmark Mission. With only 12 missionaries in Iceland, and none able to speak Mandarin, two of our missionaries, Elder Porter and Elder Chuang, have been teaching him using "Skype" on the Internet. It is exciting to watch them teaching, thousands of miles from each other, with their scriptures in front of them while looking at each other on the monitor. This is truly a "You Ban Fa" "There is a way" experience.
Here in Taichung there are dozens of these mechanical men, motorized manikins, waving their flags up and down with both "hands"at the oncoming traffic. The first time I saw one in the middle of the street I had to take a quick second look because it looked very human. Sister Greene was a good sport and agreed to pose with the good looking guy in a yellow rain coat.

The people here in Taichung are some of the most friendly and caring people that we have ever seen. This couple, with their handicapped daughter, park their food truck on the street near the mission office where they cook breakfast hamburgers, with a fried egg in them. They always call out to us with a happy greeting and are genuine in their feelings toward us.

Each day, as we cross the same busy intersection on our way to the office, we see this little man who supports himself by selling flowers from one basket and gum from the other to people stopped at the traffic light. He has no arms below his elbows but he works hard at selling his wares to the people at the stop light waiting for it to change. I quite often buy a flower or a pack of gum, and even though he doesn't speak English and I speak very little Mandarin, he has become a dear friend. He was gone for a couple of weeks and we were worried that perhaps something had happened to him. A few days ago we came to the intersection and saw him on the sidewalk across the street. I waved one hand at him and he lit up like a Christmas tree, putting down both baskets he started waving at us with both arms in the air. This is another example of a true "You Ban Fa" "there is a way," man who hasn't let adversity stop him.

These two men are brothers and they own a taxi cab. They park on a main street across from the mission home near the hospital, along with about a dozen other cabs, and wait for customers. They like to practice their English with us and always call out "good morning, how are you?" The older brother brings a chair and a portable radio in his trunk and they sit at the same spot, under the same tree each morning. These people and the many shop keepers near our apartment brighten each new day. The taxi drivers even asked for copies of their pictures. We so often remember the words to the well know hymn---"As I have loved you love one another. This new commandment love one another. By this shall men know ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another." Our hearts are full of love for these, the Lord's children in Taiwan.

Sunday, July 4, 2010


What a wonderful way to celebrate the 4th of July. Alvin Chong Chen chose this day to be baptized, and in-as-much as I have known him since he was in our English class four or five months ago, and have carried on a weekly email conversation with him, sending him General Conference talks and the lds.org web site, he asked me to baptize and confirm him. His English is very good and he reads everything he can about the church, including "Jesus the Christ." The two Assistants to the mission president, Elders Oldham and Taylor taught the majority of the lessons, with me sitting in helping and sharing my testimony during the sessions.
For the past few months, without an official calling, he has taken it upon himself to be the official hymn book custodian for our small English speaking branch, handing out the hymn books before the meetings and collecting them after the meetings. Sister Greene has developed a special relationship with him and often shares scriptures and conference talks with him. She was asked to speak at his baptism and gave a beautifully inspiring talk on the Gift of the Holy Ghost.
Our wonderful eleven English teachers will be leaving this week and a new group has already arrived to replace them. ` Our Gospel Doctrine teacher, Susan Butterfield and our Relief Society president Megan Gaian will be greatly missed. These bright and dedicated young LDS women, with the majority of the eleven being college graduates, come on six-month contracts and provide a great service while they are in Taichung. Other English teachers served as the Primary President, the Young Woman's President, the Ward chorister and counselors in various ward organizations.

Susan Williams, Carly Ostler and Candice Gonsalves are happy to be going home after their life-changing experience teaching in Taichung, Taiwan.

Saturday, July 3, 2010


Sisters Ramsey and Kilgore, along with about 24 missionaries from the Taichung Zone, await the arrival of President and Sister Bishop, the New Taiwan, Taichung Mission President. President Bishop and his wife were escorted to Taichung from Taipei early Wednesday morning June 30, 2010 by Michael and Laurie Hoer, the departing mission president.
Missionaries anxiously awaiting the arrival of the new president. Each missionary had a red long- stem rose to present to the president and his wife.

The final farewell to President and Sister Hoer before they leave the mission. They will be missed.

President Bishop greeting Sister Greene, the mission office secretary.

President and Sister Clark T. Bishop from Orem, Utah.