Wednesday, November 9, 2011

SENIOR COMPANION

Family,
The reason I am writing today is because we get to go to the temple, so schedule is different. Really excited!
    So this week has been interesting, a lot of changes. My companion had to go home a few days earlier than he thought, so Saturday I packed up and moved in with the elders that live in central Taipei by the temple-- stayed with them and then with some other elders in the area for three nights. Just kind of doing the same old missionary stuff but in downtown Taipei instead of Neihu, waiting around for President to figure out what to do with me. The options were give me a duanchuan (a Taiwanese member who is willing to be a missionary for a month or so) or close my area. In the end he chose the duanchuan, so I met him on Tuesday morning. The thing about duanchuans is they aren't really trained in how to be a missionary, so they are kind of like brand new missionaries, except they didn't  get the MTC. Anyway, it is kind of a big responsibility for me because this makes me senior companion, which is something that wouldn't usually be expected of a missionary till they have been on the island for at least 6 months, and even that is early. Plus I still don't really speak Chinese, and we whitewashed this area two weeks ago, so I am still not really familiar with it, the ward, or the few investigators we have.
     Neihu has a pretty long history of struggling, and had no elders for a long time, so I am really hoping I can keep my area alive. I think we will be fine, my companion is great. He was baptized in September, so he has a really good testimony and a lot of fire for the work, even if he is still a little less established doctrinally. His English is probably even less than my Chinese, so communication is slightly limited at times. But we really get along well and I know that we will be fine, the Lord trusts us, just kind of a little stressed right now.
     I don't have a lot of time today, just want to say everything is going fine. With every week, including the MTC, I like being a missionary more and more. I think that is because it just continuously gets better as you get more effective, I feel like I am slowly becoming a missionary who can actually help people. I am really glad I have this opportunity.
     Can't really think of anything big to report on, at least that I would have time to explain. Every week so much happens, it is hard to summarize it all, or remember it all. Investigators all doing pretty well. It has been raining pretty hard, apparently this is the start of a pretty typical, wet Taipei winter. Saw a huge spider, legspan much bigger than my hand, probably would take a chunk of skin if it bit you. Comp said it was poisonous, pretty cool, maybe next week I'll send pictures.
Love you all, thanks so much!
Elder Braithwaite

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