Sunday, September 30, 2007
We had a fabulous visit by Gladys Knight and her gospel choir last weekend at the Oakland InterStake Center. We had to hold members at bay so the members with non-member friends could have first priority to attend. Mike worked on the parking detail. Initial counts show that approximately 1,500 referrals were generated. Adding to the more than 2000 referrals recently from the Temple Pageant, the missionary work looks promising in this area.
I enjoyed seeing many of you at Bret's wedding and look forward to further reunion at Roger's. See you then. Yours, Uncle Jay
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Nyob zoo tsev neeg!
I was actually the first one Daniel told about his fingers. Ouch! I still haven't ever broken a bone, but I've been present while a few different people have broken a bone (on separate occasions) and I have decided that it isn't for me. Sounds like Kent's life is going just perfect. I heard that Daniel has caught up to him in merit badges though. Kent: Do not do what I did and put your Eagle off and try to slip under at the last moment. You're only going to get busier, so do it NOW. In this letter I send my ten points of leadership to you; apply liberally.
At the Referral Center I had a really great experience. I talked to a man who had ordered a BoM (I was following up to see if he had received it), and we had a terrific, long conversation about the BoM and how it is simple and easy to understand. He had read much of it from a copy in his hotel room and thought it was great. He asked me a question about Nehor, and I had to rack my brain to remember who that was. He asked if Nehor was like Satan, but I wasn't exactly sure what he meant by that. I explained a little about what Nehor did and who he was, and the man said, "Yeah, that sounds like Satan to me!"
I realized that he had meant, "Is he like, Satan?" I explained that Nehor was a man who was deceived by Satan, and not Satan himself.
By the way, in the TRC I was talking about tithing and I accidentally said that God would pour the windows of heaven upon him...ouch.
Gotta go, love you all, keep writing, the church is true!
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Subject: Txoj moo ntawm kev zoo siab
Nyob zoo tsev neeg!
The TRC went great, by the way. It's hard to feel the spirit when you are focusing more on how you speak than what you are saying. This week, however there where a few times during the lesson where I suddenly spoke smoothly and I could feel the spirit much stronger. This was usually as I bore testimony or resolved a concern. The gift of tongues is real, and the church is true. I'm about out of time, all of you have a good week!
Noj qab nyob zoo!
Sunday, September 16, 2007
This is a flyer for the most recent of my events I have done. You may be asking how I was involved...well I AM DJ SNAX( the flyer says featuring DJ SNAX in the upper left above the grp name GO DAV). When I went away to Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo I had no idea what opportunities I would have. While attending a hip hop show last school year I met a veteran hip hop DJ in the area whos been helping me purchase the right equipment and mentoring me. One of my best friends growing up who goes to Santa Barbara City College and wanted to throw a show and wanted me to DJ. So I packed up my turntables and headed down the coast. Little did I know that I would be "spinning" for 300+ people in what the building manager considered a "historical landmark". The event location was in a community center where Cesar Chavez held rallies for the people and there have been some pretty well known performers to go through the venue as well. The group who performed (GO DAV) is on the rise and looking to sign with a major record company which is a great resume builder for me! The event went so well the manager told me he had been looking for female DJs and asked if I would be willing to come back down to Santa Barbara to dj future events. It was a great learning exprience but I definatly have SO MUCH MORE TO LEARN. I'm trying to get in contact with some people there who have pictures from the night and will post them if I come across some. Maybe I should look into some sort of business card now...
"What a great young man. We can tell already he will be wonderful Missionary.
"Elder Pimentel is easy to talk to and seemed comfortable about getting right in there. Everyone likes him and is already learning the names of Ward members. The members here are very humble and most of them are on welfare. They do not have the missionaries over to dinner very often so we have them all out here in groups. We had twenty three to dinner tonight and he fit right in with his great smile and good presence. He introduced himself and then gave a ten minute mini lesson as we had seven non-members here. He is well spoken and had no problem doing the lesson.
"His trainer is Elder Tomita from Japan . He is one of the finest missionaries you’ll ever meet. They seem to get on well together."
In a later note, she added, "Your son is in good hands with Elder Tomita, you would like and appreciate him. He is a good leader and does everything with excellence. He is also kind and very encouraging to his companions. Elder Tomita will be a perfect trainer for Elder Pimentel."
The Lukes gave some background on Barrow; their daughter was a missionary in Barrow 8 years ago:
"The people here in Barrow are poor and most are on welfare. They cannot afford to have us missionaries over to dinner (they call it Tea). So we have the families out here to the Farm House and feed them instead. We always have the missionaries too so they can teach the members and extra family that comes. Because our daughter was in this area and loved the people, the Ward members are happy to come be with us since we kind of know them too. It has jokingly turned into a Ward activity to guess who is coming to dinner at the Lukes. I think we have had the whole Ward over but for one family of 13 left."
There are a couple of pictures of Sam and his companion on the September 16 post on the Lukes' blog.
Needless to say, we absolutely love Elder and Sister Luke, who have been so supportive of our boy. We may hear from Sam as early as Tuesday or Wednesday, when he will have P-Day and will use the Lukes' computer to send us an email letter home. We are excited to hear from him.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Sent: Tuesday, September 11, 2007 7:38 AM
Nyob zoo sawv ntxov nej sawvdaws!
The TRC went quite well, and we had another experience that taught us to be very careful when speaking Hmong. We were talking about prophets, and my companion was explaining what the priesthood was. He meant to say that it was the authority and power God gives to men to do the work to cause to be able to save people's lives (to cause salvation...Hmong grammar is weird) but instead of saying "kom cawm tau neeg" or very literally "to cause to save (able to) people", he said "kom kawm tua neeg" or "to cause to learn to kill people". The volunteer paused for a moment then said "Koj tau hais dabtsi?" (What did you say?) My comp realized what he said and we all had a good laugh.
Lub koom txoos muaj tseeb! -Elder Meej
Sunday, September 9, 2007
As I think most of you know, I'm currently attending a School for the Arts, capitals and all. This means, for me, two and a half to four hours of cello practicing every day except Sunday, when I just do casual playing, not to mention the hour-long cello lessons and theory homework I have to do.
This is a big step up from my twenty minute to half an hour practice period and forty-five minute lessons, so it's taking a bit of adjustment.
Don't get me wrong, I absolutely, positively luuuuuuuuurve my school. Somehow I've been placed in the highest orchestra with all the child-prodigy level kids, and am having the experience of a lifetime. Plus, our orchestra does all the cool stuff - we perform really often, go on an out-of-state trip every year, etc. Currently, as the assistant director of music has abandoned us to move to New York, we are occupied in tutoring beginners (and I mean beginners, kids who've never touched a musical instrument in their lives) on their respective instruments.
Besides, I'm in a huge cello section - there are nine of us in my theory class.
Our home teacher is taking composition classes at the local college, which is just about the coolest thing ever. The first visit he made we spent almost the whole time playing hymns for him while he quizzed us on chords, etc.
This week he gave us a piece of music for two violins and a cello to try out. It's pretty cool.
On a different note, I'm thinking about taking up fencing again - a huge commitment, since I'll need to buy my own equipment and sqeeze out another one and a half to two hours every week for lessons.
We've managed to get ourselves library cards, and are now ravaging the public library in search of books we haven't read. I'm finally getting to read the books on my humongous list of books impossible to find overseas.
Now, before you fall asleep in your chair (if you haven't done so already), I bid you adieu.
Saturday, September 8, 2007
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
Sent: Tuesday, September 04, 2007 10:14 AM
Subject: News from "Bubbylon"
That's what we call the MTC sometimes: Bubbylon (or Bubbleon). Last Saturday was the first time we taught a lesson at the TRC entirely in Hmong. It went great. Our volunteer used to teach at the MTC and he said we were among the best he's ever seen do an all-Hmong lesson for the first time. This week we have to teach the first lesson again in Hmong, but this time we have no teaching record, so we have no idea what to expect, and won't be able to plan very well. You teach someone very differently if they are Christian than if they have never heard of God.
Can any of you read Hmong? I was just thinking that it would be a lot easier for me to tell you interesting things about the language if you could imagine what the words sound like so I don't always have to try to explain it. For example, the phrase "Ua ntej peb pib" means 'before we begin", but sounds like the english phrase 'one day, baby'. Oops--I'm almost out of time.
We got a new teacher, and his mission was where Elder Vang lived. In fact, he taught Elder Vang's family and Elder Vang went on splits with him and taught him Hmong. (Our new teacher went to Alaska, where they send English speaking missionaries, then assign a few of them to learn Hmong after they get there).
Okay, got to go! Love ya!
- Elder Meej
Monday, September 3, 2007
I have missed getting exciting world wide stories from David and Annette that I could pass on to "Aunt" Janice. So now she is passing on good stories to me from her daughter Julie who for the next three years will be living in Abu Dhabi. Julie's husband Gary is in the FBI and is working in the American embassy there. One of his jobs is to travel to some of the towns and get acquainted. When he went to Oman and met with the man there he had to explain that he could not drink the special drink there because it was made with coffee. The man said, "What are you - a Mormon?" When Gary said yes the man told how his country respects the Mormons and they have a statue of our prophet in their country. Can you guess which prophet it is? It is Lehi. Figure that one out.
I am spending more of your inheritance and getting a new drive way and new patio poured. I keep tripping on the broken patio and Nancy has told me that she doesn't want to take care of me if I fall and break my hip. No one else has offered, so I am forced into the new patio. Besides, Alan Carlile has time to do it right now.
Love you all, Grandma