Sunday, May 3, 2009

from Jon 5/2

Subject: Kuv txais lub thawv

Nyob zoo!
I got the package! Ua tsaug 'os!

Did I tell you about how we (the Minneapolis and Brooklyn Park Hmong Elders) landed a record deal? One of the counselors to the Branch President liked the musical numbers we have done for a couple of past sacrament meetings so much, that he asked us if he could record us singing some hymns in Hmong so he could make a CD for members of the branch. We assumed he just wanted us to come over to his house and sing into a USB mic on his computer. Turns out he booked a recording studio in St. Paul for an hour. We practiced four or five songs for a week, then went and recorded them last Thursday. None of the Elders has any singing experience but me, and only one other had any musical experience. One of the Elders served four years in Iraq as artillery, and has experienced ear damage. He is virtually tone deaf, but miraculously, he is so flat that most of the time he sings a consistent major third below the melody, creating a lovely alto-like flavor. We ended up recording seven songs, and are waiting for the studio to edit and clean up the CD. The recording room was designed for one or two people only, and the owner was a little overwhelmed with the odd situation of having four tall Americans want to sing at the same time (he mostly get Hmong soloists). He had to do a lot of microphone adjusting. It was also very hot in there.

We had some incredible lessons this week. One was with a girl named Yer who has been very hesitant to come to church, and didn't really see the big importance of taking the gospel very seriously, and was mostly just curious. We took a joint teacher, and she (the joint teacher) did a wonderful job testifying and pouring out her heart with love toward Yer. They made a real connection, and the joint teacher invited her to church and said she can pick her up. The lesson was very spiritually charged.

Another lesson was with Zoua and her sister Ia. This was on the day of Zone Conference, where we just had a training on inviting for baptism on the first lesson. We have been working with Zoua since December, and she still hasn't come to church. Ia had just moved in, and this was our first time talking to her. We watched "The Testaments" because Zoua responded very well to "Finding Faith in Christ", and we really wanted her to feel something. Ia watched it with us, and afterward we talked about the Spirit, and testified of Christ and how we felt the spirit during the film. They felt it too, and we challenged them to be baptized. They accepted! Now we need to help them prepare. They planned to paint their house this Saturday and Sunday, but we are going to talk to their mom and offer to help them finish early so they can make it to church.

We may just baptize Nouchi with Misty as soon as Misty has her license, but we are going to do everything we can to prepare Chor, so he and Mee can join them. We are still trying to figure out what Chor's real concern is. It's a puzzle. We are praying.

I love you all! Kuv hlub nej sawvdaws! I look forward to talking to everyone on Mothars' Dee!

-Elder Moua Ying

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