It's incredible to see the fire of missionary work and a desire for growth spread over Hong Kong Island. The stake is still bent on their goal for a 100 baptisms this year, and just last week they held another member-missionary conference. The people here truly are "catching the wave." Our companionship had 3 people at church this week, and the other had a few as well.
Our Bishop has had a miracle change as well. One of the most difficult things about working in Chai Wan has been having a Bishop who seemed a little stand-offish to the missionaries and the work, and could only be contacted on the weekends because he worked in Mainland monday-friday. When he invited us into his office last week he informed us that he lost his job, but was very happy. He said that for years he had held onto the job for the simple reason that he was unwilling to let go of the money it was bringing him and his family. He said that now that he has no job, his burden of not being able to magnify his calling as a Bishop has been lifted. This man had lost a steady job and is still raising a family, and is the Bishop of our Ward, and he sat before us with a completely new countenance. Happy. He has been giving us assignments and materials to fulfil those assignments, admonishing us to keep frequently following up with him on those duties, and on his free time he is searching for a new job. I have been so impressed with the increase of faith in the members, and it feels like the Spirit is brooding over Hong Kong. I'm just waiting for an explosion.
Not to mention all the new missionaries. I would never have guessed what an opportunity could be found in the challenge of being with missionaries whose linguistic capabilities are so limited. I swear I've found more people (including families) to talk to with Elder Young than I had for a month or more with Elder Woo. The enthusiasm and childlike faith and new ideas of a young new missionary is bringing miracles to accompany the faith of all the members. I find it interesting that every companionship in the Hong Kong Island zones is training. No, I don't think it's chance. I think it's tactic, faith, and trust in divine assistance.
It's all a rush and city pressure out here, but we're all learning to pause for a moment and say a prayer. With all the new methods Satan has to attack the children of men in these modern times, we must take extra heed to the counsel of the prophets and develop a more profound inner connection with the Savior. Too many think that life is all about themselves, too many religions teach that finding peace is selfish and individual, but we know better. We know Christ well enough to know that His ministry was outward, not inward. We know that happiness comes from lifting the hands that hang down, and serving the helpless and the needy. And as the world begins to suffocate us with information, we must hold fast to knowledge. The poet T.S. Eliot once wrote, "Where is the wisdom that is lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge that is lost in information?"
There are certain truths that cannot be transmitted by word of mouth any more than a man can describe his mother to a stranger and tell him to find her in a Women's Conference. The man would find his mother. The stranger never would. I cannot describe to anyone scientifically the manifestations of the Spirit, but to the Savior I am no stranger. Never let your wisdom be lost in knowledge, nor your knowledge in information. Have faith. I know that Jesus Christ lives, and His restored gospel is the only hope for lasting peace in this life and in the lifte to come.