Wednesday, December 11, 2013

December 9, 2013

Good morning Mom!
I was going to complain about the weather getting below 50 degrees here, but it sounds like you are getting more chilly up there! And complaining has never helped anyone get anything except for a spanking.
We got a new ward mission leader this week and he is British! Name, Mark Dunning. Hobbies, spending time with the family. Where he keeps his spare time, in the boot of the car. We love him.
The geese are getting fat somewhere and I think that means that Christmas is coming! Ten of us missionaries are getting together this week with some members of the ward and we are going to go deliver some "live Christmas cards". That means that we are going to knock on some people's doors, sing a Christmas song or two and then ask if we can come in and read the Christmas story with them from the Bible and then sing another song or two and leave them with a prayer. We have 10 families lined up, so I hope we have enough time or enough people to split up and still sound alright!
Yesterday I got to accompany the mission choir at a performance that we did. I was on the organ and my Canadian friend helped me a lot by pressing all of the buttons that we needed to to make it sounds good while I pressed the keys.
I forget about other highlights... We had a gospel discussion with well over a hundred people this week on the streets and it is interesting to see how the spirit of Christmas has been able to inspire people to turn their thoughts, feeling and actions towards others.
Oh yeah, one other thing! Elder Schumacher and I got to dress up as wise men and do a live nativity for the community! The lights were blinding, but some people got pictures. I will ask Sister Richardson to email them to you. just got to get her your email.
Well Mom, don't forget to layer and remember that I love you! I am going to send up a sleighful of gifts with one of the members here who is from Oregon. Look for reindeer in two weeks.

Monday, December 2, 2013

December 2, 2013

Happy December!
This week with Thanksgiving was quite a trip! Elder Schumacher is my new companion from the NE corner of Colorado in a little town called Peetz! He has got to be one of the calmest, hard working, creative people I have ever met.
We got to prepare for Thanksgiving dinner by playing some games with the Bishop's extended family at a local park; mostly just capture the flag with the kids. It felt good to have normal fun! Then we had a delectable dinner with the Hanson family. This morning we went running with Brother Hanson and got up at 5:00 so that we could be back in time. it was a beautiful morning. I don't know what words describe the California skies as the sun rises and sets each day. I suppose that's where the saying "words can't descirbe it" comes from.
Other highlights:
We had a baptism this weekend in the ward for Brian Rich! The Sisters have mostly been teaching them, but we got to be involved a little bit. I was blessed to be able to conduct his baptismal interview and I was so inspired by his sincerity and commitment to living the right way and helping his family be more united.
The first day that Elder Schumacher and I were together we had to go run a meeting and we had all of the administrative paperwork completed ahead of schedule and we sere just going to make everything run so smoothly. Until I locked the keys in the trunk of the car. So we were about an hour late after the locksmith saved our behinds.
President Orgill, our fearless Mission President, gave us permission to organize a regional dodgeball tournament on New Year's Day! We are excited  to work with the youth and hopefully have people throw something besides Mormon myths at us!
I am so excited to be here in Laguna Beach as Christmas rolls around. We were studying this morning about understanding "Why" we do things. It is a critical part of having true faith that we learn more about that in which we believe and then strive to adhere more closely to the tenets of whatever we have faith in. As we study out those things that we say we have faith in then we make changes in our lives to make sure we are living how we believe we should. Often the first part of having faith is simply to act on whatever knowledge that we have. Through the experience of living what we believe then we come to know of its truthfulness. The more we live it the more we understand it. Sometimes we want to know everything before we do anything. I believe in Jesus Christ, but I don't know everything. With Christmas making its presence known I am reminded that everything I do is because Jesus Christ was born, lived and died for us. I start to see on a small, yet ever increasing scale, why it is that Jesus Christ makes it possible for us to be happy in this life and happy in the next life. I do my best to act in faith and live according to what I know, but I am grateful for the opportunity that we have to keep trying and to keep learning. This is a happy time to be on the earth!
Have a great week!
Love, Elder Chandler   

Monday, November 25, 2013

November 25,2013

Dear Turkeys,
Thank you for the email this past week! Thank you for the birthday box and Thank you for being great examples of living the gospel!
This week has been pretty darn fun. The bad new first though, Elder Hegland is getting transferred tomorrow and I am going to get a new companion that won't be Elder Hegland. Whoever he is, he will be great. If he is not then I'll whip him into shape! I rebuked some missionaries last night because they didn't meet their contacting goal that they set as a district. I told them I was going to rebuke them and then I asked them how I did at the end, so it turned out to be productive. In district meeting I literally told them if they didn't get the goal then I would call them and rebuke them Sunday night, so they weren't suprized.
More good news:
On Tuesday we took some Elders out to an all-you-can-eat sushi place!! We talked about the progress of the Laguna Hills 2nd ward over 200+ rolls of sushi!
More good news:
We got to garden 3 times this week! We dug up bushes, did weeding and resurfaced a driveway! We got to wear jeans!
More good news:
We got Laguna Beach Cross Country T-shirts and sweatshirts from the coach, who is investigating!
More good news:
2 Stories -
This week Elder Hegland was pretty sick, but he fought through it. On Saturday we got a keyboard and hymnbooks from the church and went out onto the Pacific Coast highway in Laguna Beach, cleared out the homeless people and did a little concert. We did some hymns, a little piano arrangement and Hallelujah. Some people stopped and listened, but no real interest in learning aboutwhat we had to share. We had a grand old time though. Later that night we taught Tyler, our investigator, and he had 3 of his friends over so we taught them the first lesson and two of them came to church yesterday! They are considering baptism and so they are going to be fun to work with.
Sunday - We had an early meeting (Elder Hegland woke me up at 5am by banging on my bed and telling me that it was my birthday!) then we made it to church long enough to take the sacrament and then we swung by the local Christian church that we told someone we would go to. Her name was Maddie and she came to our church last week. Then we went back for the end of our church. Then we went out and visited people, had dinner and then went to the Methodist church for an inter-faith Thanksgiving celebration. The mission choir sang. It was fun.
The end.
More good news:
Alma 26:37 (I think it is 37...) Anyways there was a great misionary named Ammon and he gave thanks unto God for showing mercy unto all of the people in the world. God knows all of us wherever we are or whoever we are. It has been repeatedly impressed upon me that all of us are spirit children of a loving heavenly Father who knows us and watches over us. It is important for us all to engage in meaningful conversations about the things that matter most, in this life in in the eternities. I used to not like real serious discussions, but my spirit longs for them now. Although, I can't get enough of a good laugh either. I am grateful to be a missionary and grateful that I can serve my brothers and sisters here in Laguna Beach.
Love, Elder Chandler

November 18, 2013

Hello Mother!
This week has been nice! I have been out of Laguna Beach a few times on exchanges with other missionaries. Some people get homesick, but I get elderheglandsick when I am away for too long. #companionseperationanxiety
That hashtag is for K.
Armando hasn't been able to get work off until December, so he will be baptized in December. Charles is going to have the choice to accept a baptismal date this week when we meet with him. He is a very curious and spiritual man. Tyler is chugging along and I always appreciate being able to go over there and have some very real conversations with him about our Savior. They should all be at church this week or next.
A few highlights(once again I can only really remember a day or two back):
Sunday morning the choir performed again, so Elder Hegland went to the Laguna Beach ward while I went and accompanied the choir in a different ward. It went pretty well. No one got baptized because of it yet, but we are still fine tuning how to make this choir effective as a finding, teaching and baptizing tool for the California, Irvine Mission. We have bi-weekly choir council meetings which I participate in and we don't want this choir to be a time-waster or anything less than the professional quality that should accompany the sacredness of it participant's calling. Basically it needs to be good and it needs to be effective. enough about the choir.
This week we talked to a few people and two young women said that they would come to our church and learn more if we would go to their church. So we said absolutely! Then they actually came. I was at the choir performance, but Elder Hegland confirmed that they came, so on my birthday I get to go to another church!
Last night we had a lesson with a family that got baptized earlier this year. So there is the single mom and two little girls. They are from Latvia. Think of Gru from Despicable me and that's the accent. Lona is blonde and 5 years old. we met outside. They have 2 fiesty dogs that want to get out of the house and get eaten by coyotes because they don't know better. Lona was in charge of keeping the dogs behind the gate. On accident Lona left the gate open a little bit and the dogs almost got out. Lona quickly shut the gate, turned around and sang: "Who let the dogs out? Hoo! Hoohoo, hoohoo!" We all laughed a lot. That family is one of my all-time favorites!
I will close with a thought this week from President Monson: I reread a few conference talks to make sure I am applying the spiritual impressions I had during conference and a line of his stood out to me from one of his talks. He mentioned the idea of the "distorted prism of pessimism". For some reason I really liked that. We can not look at life as something bad, or that is what it will become. We should choose to be happy and hold on to our hope for the eternal lito come even when trials come our way. I am so inspired by this work that I get to participate in and I am saddened when missionaries do not find joy in the work. I blame it on the adversary's use of his "distorted prism of pessimism". Let us use our agency to think good, act good and be good. Pardon my grammar and have a lovely week!
Love- Elder Chandler

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

November 12, 2013

Happy day after Veteran's day, or as the Canadians say "Rememberance Day" eh. We have a Canadian in our zone and he plays the organ for the mission choir so we have fun with him.
Thanks for the email this week. Answer:
the 20 woman breakfast was just a little get together that a member of the ward had with a few members and a lot of non-members who are friends in the community. Nothing formal, jsut a breakfast.
I am sorry to report that I have not taken pictures in 5 weeks. whoops. I will do better this week. There are some sweet sunsets #lagunabeach.
Kennedy put a lot of #hashtags in that family letter. She is a very different young woman then the little girl sister that was at home when I left for college!
Highlights this week.
#1 today Elder Hegland and I had a nice little meeting with the missionaries in the stake and trained on planning and applying the Atonement. Some of the missionaries are getting really down on themselves, so our intent was to lift, instruct, edify and inspire them. I love our missionaries.
#2Sunday night we had our first mission choir performance and I was going to play the organ for our closing number (I have never played the organ before), but lucklily our Canadian friend was prepared with his arrangment for the last song. So it turned out alright.
#3 I gave a talk on Sunday to the ward. There were 17 nonmembers there that we were aware of and I spoke about how the gospel can be real, and should be real in our lives. I talked about how any time I had/have hard feelings the gospel can transform them into love and motivate me to serve and be better.
#4 I forget what happened before Sunday. Sorry. Life goes on. you got 2 days worth of highlights this week. It was a good week.
Well we are going to go teach Tyler, and Armando tonight and then Charlestomorrow, so as much as I enjoy typing an email, I would honestly rather be teaching the gospel. Not that I don't love you too....

Monday, November 4, 2013

November 4, 2013

Hello my dear Mother!
Thank you for the nice email this week! I love hearing about the happenings of your life. Elder Hegland and I had a great week and we are incredibly happy and busy. I feel like I am just in the zone now and I don't think about much besides missionary work. But I am not bored even though there is only one purpose consuming my life!!!!!
I wrote down 5 things that happened this week. so here is your 5 paragraph letter :-)
1) We went on a 6 mile run with our ward mission leader this morning in the mountains. So fun!
2) On Halloween we drove around to each missionary in the zone a doorbell ditched their favorite treat on their doorstep.
3) Saturday we had a breakfast with 20 women and we made them eggs and pancakes.
4) Tyler Fisher (our autistic investigator) bore his testimony on Sunday.
5) We met a woman who referred herself to the church because she saw the great example of members of the church in her life. She accepted to be baptized on November 30! yay, except she texted us this morning and said that she decided over the weekend that "the Mormon path" was not the one for her. Darn Satan.
Well, I love life and this work is so great. We have lots going on. Talk to you next week!
Love, Elder Chandler

Sunday, November 3, 2013

October 28, 2013

HI Mom!
I have met so many great people this week! The pink power ranger, a holocaust survivor, Beth Garlock, and Armando to name a few.
I am really happy here in Laguna Beach and Elder Hegland and I are having a mighty fine time. I feel really bad that I don't remember much of what we did this week and Elder Shiu still has my camera, so I don't have pictures yet.
Thank you for your email about gratitude. That is something that we all can continuously work on.
Ummmmm, please see Dad's email for an update on the people I am teaching... I am sorry about that this week. I promise at least 5 real paragraphs next week.
I love you!
-Elder Chandler

Monday, October 21, 2013

October 21, 2013

HI Mom!
Thank you for your email this week, the church is obsessed with President Uchtdorf's quote about doubting our doubts before we doubt our faith. It has a profound and simple message behind it. It is truth!
Well I am serving West of Santa Margarita and serving with a companion who was originally called to serve in a country North of where Elder Shiu is from. AKA Laguna Beach with Elder Hegland YAYY!!
Life is good here.
Sorry, gots to go! I left my camera in a member's car in Santa Margarita and I haven't gotten it back yet. They forgot to bring it to the Journeay's baptism on Saturday. Oh yeah, it was one of the sweetest baptisms of my mission and I got to give a talk!
Have a great week! -Elder Chandler

Sunday, October 20, 2013

October 15th, 2013

Good morning Mom!

I am glad that you got the picture of Avery! We are going over there in half an hour to have a lesson with his mom. She is preparing to go through the temple. She was baptized one year and two days ago. I am sad to leave them, but I will let you know where I am getting transferred to on Monday

It has been fun to train Elder Donohue for 6 weeks with Elder Shiu! They are both good friends and I am glad that I will see Elder Shiu every week at mission choir! Yippee! 

I am pretty impressed with how well you typed your email this week from your phone. 

The Journeay's are getting baptized on Saturday and Brother Journeay asked that I speak at the baptism, so I will get to come back for that. 

I have some pictures to send you this week, so I will get on that!

Love Elder Chandler 

October 7th, 2013

Good morning Mom!

My new motto: "Work hard, pray hard, sleep hard." Thank you for closing your email in such a diligent fashion. I appreciate your expectations of me. I believe that if no one expects anything from people then they don't feel motivated to do anything. I am grateful for the knowledge that we have a heavenly Father who expects us and knows that we have the ability to prove ourselves worthy to return home. 

One of my favorite talks was brother McConkie, who you referenced in your email: he reminded us that "God speaks". I loved his exhortation to become personally converted and strengthen our personal testimonies of the gospel. For, when we are prepared then the Spirit can direct us in ways that we do not expect. 

Thank you for the package, I have been trying to eat better. I put your letter where you said to stay away from dairy and processed foods next to the creamy package of Dove chocolates that you sent me :-) I haven't eaten any chocolates.

Our investigators are happy and they are reading and praying about the Book of Mormon. I have been doing the same. This week I will especially work har, pray hard and sleep hard! I hope everyone will do the same!

Love, Elder Chandler

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

September 30, 2013

Good morning Mother!

This week has been very nice, just warm and sunny. Sorry to hear about the variant weather that Oregon is prone to! I cannot imagine a day that is not 70-75 degrees with sunshine all day, what is it like? 

I appreciated the update about the happenings of the Chandler clan; it sounds like a lot of the families here in Santa Margarita: Soccer, back-to-school night, driving, being busy, etc... everything except for "soggy"

Well enough about the weather. Last week we had a mission conference that I neglected to tell you about and this week we have zone training meeting, choir, follow-up trainer meeting, and next week a general authority is visiting for zone conferences and mission leadership council. Then the week after that is transfers. I really feel at home here and the work is going so well that I will probably get transferred. Ha. 

Back to last week's mission conference. There are two parts of it that I remember. None of it was really about the conference itself. First, I really did not want to be at the conference and I had a bad attitude because three of thecompanionships in the zone had to miss some of church for it, and it just felt like an excuse to get out of working on a highly productive Sunday afternoon. I just felt like the missionaries were not there to apply anything that they were about to learn, but they were just having a party. So then Elder and Sister Richards (the visiting general authority and his wife) spoke and talked to us. Elder Richards made a comment that I kept with me. He said that President Orgill had asked him and his wife to come speak because President Orgill wanted the entire mission to have experiences together where they could feel the spirit and be edified and instructed together. That made all the difference for me. It was more about the unifying spirit that the actual doctrine being expounded. I started taking notes after that and learned a lot.

Elder Richards also related a story of a missionary who served when Elder Richards was a mission president in Texas. The missionary got whitewashed (When both companions are new to the area) into an area and there was no food except a box of old corn flakes. That week it was Christmas. The Elders did not get to go shopping until after Christmas, so they just had those old cornflakes for Christmas. Elder Richards said that if they had just asked to take 20 minutes of their lunch time to go shop then he would have gladly allowed them to go get some food! It just so happened that last Sunday our gas tank had only 7 miles left until empty (poor planning on our part), and it is about a 20-25 mile drive up to the mission office where the conference was. We were going to have to buy gas on our way home, but that story inspired us to ask God for help that we wouldn't have to purchase gas on Sunday. We made it home! And we had enough gas to get us to the gas station the next morning! 

Another great experience this week was with Jaleh, who is our Iranian investigator. She loved the women's broadcast about covenants. She also invited her Jewish friend George to church and he came and believes that his search for the true Christian church has ended! 

Jaleh has been attracted to the church because of her daughter Nissa. Nissa is 12 and Jaleh wants Nissa to have structure and morals in her life. Jaleh and Nissa are close friends with the ward mission leader and his family. At first Jaleh loved the programs of the institution called "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints". She strove to understand the concepts intellectually and saw how these activities and programs really benefited the people who participated. before my mission this is how I saw the church for a long time. I though that it was great because it really did help people become better people to put it simply. As I have seen real changes in people's lives it has strengthened my testimony that this church has great guidelines and great structure. As I have seen people change their hearts and let the peace and joy of the gospel of Jesus Christ into their lives then it has given me a testimony of the reality and divinity of the truthfulness of the restored gospel. 

In the past few weeks Jaleh has experienced feeling the Spirit in her life. She has prayed and read the Book of Mormon (she reads the children's picture book :-) As she has done so the ideas and equations that she understood the gospel to be became real and brought joy to her heart. It was a classic example of how the spirit will speak to our minds AND our heart and the whisperings of the Spirit testify of truthfulness and they change our hearts. I think it talks about that is D&C 8 or something like that. So that is pretty neat, she is talking about who she wants to baptize her, so we are excited on that front as well. 

The Journay's are busy with the end of tax extension season and the wife wants to invite her co-workers to her baptism, so we have reset the date for October 19 (Elder Shiu's birthday!!) We also found another investigator who has agreed to get baptized on October 19. So that is 4 people coming up. Yup, looks like it's time for me to get transferred.

I hope the rain is enjoyable and that it adds variety to your lives. I will admit that I am jealous of the excited process of precipitation that you get to witness. I am in a figurative drought of weather excitement. Anyways, I want you to know how much I love and appreciate you Mom! Elder Shiu and I are headed up to the office in a little bit to get mail and I am excited to see what is there! My leg is doing much better. I will show you pictures after my mission.... in about 13 months, right? I think I still have a long time left, so be patient.

The following photos are from the Coleman family who fed the Elders last night and were kind enough to send us these photos:

Sunday, September 29, 2013

September 26th, 2013

Happy Wednesday

Today was our temple trip day and we went to the Newport Beach temple. That is the only temple that the Irvine mission goes to now. I got a sweet email from Ben Barton with some pictures of him and Jackson hiking Timpanogous. That was really sweet. 

We will go pick up mail on Monday, so I am excited to get whatever you sent :) 

I am also glad that you got the little recording from Sister Coleman of Elder Shiu singing in sacrament, he is a good singer! We also have started mission choir, so he and I go to that and have a good time. Elder Hegland is there too, so I always sit with him and we sing Mongolian songs to warm up. 

Fun story of the week: Sunday night we went by the Nelson's, who are a part-member family and they have 2 little blonde girls. We went by around 7:30 and it was getting dark so it felt late (During the summer it is light until 9 and no one cares if we come by at 8:30, but when it gets dark sooner, for some reason it gets later sooner...). Anyways the non-member wife answered and said that it was a little late for them and they were putting the girls down for bed. At that moment the 2 year old girl ran out and pointed at Elder Shiu (pronounced El-der Shoe) and started yelling "Mister Shoo-ee, Mister Shoo-ee!!" We all couldn't help but laugh. So the mom changed from being mad to inviting us over for dinner. Thank you Mister Shoo-ey! 

The Journays are still golden and are set to be baptized on October 4 (hard to believe that it is almost October here in Orange county again) We taught them all of the commandments on Saturday and here is a little snap shot of how the lesson went down:
Journays: Well thank for being here Elders, what are going to learn today?
Us: We want to talk about some ways that we can be happier in this life through obedience to some commandments that God has given us.
Journays: great!
Us: We believe that Joseph Smith reveived a law of hea...
Journays: Oh! The Word of WIsdom?!
Us: Right, the Wor...
Journays: That is where you don't drink, smoke, do drugs adn stuff, right?
Us: That is right, and we can promise you that if you...
Journays: We need to throw away that 10 pound bag of coffee on our counter!
Us: ... Are you for real?...

So this pattern continued for the law of Tithing (He had questions about whether it on our net or gross), Chastity, Sabbath day, fasting, etc... It took about 2 minutes for each commandment and they pretty much just taught us. 

We are excited for them and they are too good to be true, except they are true!

I hope you all have a great week and the gospel is real. That has hit me pretty hard this week: That this is all real. I knew that it is true, but we will literally live again after we die and following the commandments WILL make us happier! 

Have a great week! Love- Elder Chandler

Monday, September 23, 2013

September 16, 2013

Hello Mom,

Thank you for your email! It is good to hear that you are out and after the ivy! I haven't cried in the library reading my email in a while, so thank you for that. This week was nice and everything is going well. The weather is cooling and the palm trees are green :)

We had a glorious ward picnic on Saturday to celebrate the Santa Margarita ward's 25th anniversary. There were all 6 of the Bishops who had served in this ward since 1988 (back when this was all farmland!) Then on Sunday each of them spoke for 5 minutes and it was a wonderful meeting. Lee was sustained to receive the Aaronic priesthood, but he went home to watch the football game after 2nd hour so we need to go explain that he didn't get the priesthood yet and needs to stay for all three hours next week. The Journay's were at church and they met about 30 people at the ward picnic. They would get baptized today if the Mission President didn't require 3 times church attendance before baptism. 

Elder Shiu and I gave a training to the zone on baptism on Thursday and it was good, the zone tripled the number of baptismal dates set this month! Yay! Life is good, if the weather would just chill a little more then the lack of working AC would be bearable, but everything else is good. My shingles have been medicated into submission and I feel on top of the world! 

Have a luvverly week!

Love, Elder Chandler

Monday, September 9, 2013

September 9, 2013

Good morning starshine, the earth says hello!

I often feel like I am in a dreamland and this is not reality, but I really like what I am doing right now so I do not ever want to wake up. I used to have dreams about flying and right now I feel like I am having a dream about flying. Life is good. 

I am here in Rancho Santa Margarita and would not rather be anywhere else in the world. unless God told me to go somewhere else, then that would be the place I would most like to go. 

Thank you mother for the notepads you sent in that last package, it was incredibly timely and I have been taking lots of notes about everything, because I don't feel the pressure of perfection like I used to when I only had little notebooks to write in and I didn't want to make any mistakes when I was writing, so I just took less notes. Now we do language learning activities and sketch out trainings and do all sorts of fun things with this new found freedom of paper and writing utensil!

The California, Irvine mission is starting a mission choir tomorrow and I will probably talk more about that later. The California, Irvine mission also established a service district of missionaries that focus their day-time proselyting hours on giving meaningful service to the people living here. President Orgill is really focusing on becoming a positive presence in the community.

Elder Shiu (my favorite Chinaman companion) and I are training a sharp new missionary from Lehi, Utah named Elder Donohue. This is quite a different experience, because now I need to filter more of my jaded comments so that he doesn't feel like the mission can be as difficult as it is sometimes. There are times of trial and slow days of searching for people to teach, but there are also unexpected tender mercies of the Lord.

On Wednesday evening, Elder Donohue's first full day in the mission field we stopped by a young couple that just moved in from Mission Viejo. They are not members, but they invited us in and asked us about what we do and they told us that they had grown up with a lot of friends who are members of the church. They want to become "eternally linked" in the "Mormon castle" and want to know how long it will take to "join the team". It was really a good feeling to be able to find some people that wanted to talk to us! 

Sometimes I feel like a real creeper because I don't feel awkward walking up to people and introducing myself and sharing a few sentences of restored truth and asking if they have 15 minutes to hear more about it. Even when it is 8:30 and dark outside. Elder Shiu is getting used to it and Elder Donohue is also learning, but they still think I am creepy. Does anyone have any advice on ways to approach people without seeming creepy? I really don't try to be creepy, but sometimes my companions feel like I am really creepy. 

Well that is about all I have to share this week, are there any questions that you want to know about the area, or missionary work? 

I am so excited for the missionaries leaving from our ward to go and serve. Including Brother Von DerLohe. I am sad I won't see him for a while. I am happy to know that he will live again. I know that the restored gospel that we share everyday has the power to enable people to overcome any trial that we face. I am grateful for this time that I have to be a missionary. I know that it's true!

Have a great week, 
Love Elder Chandler

September 3, 2013

Aloha Mother!

This week has been quite a ride, we have been busy, Lee got baptized, Elder Shiu and I will be getting a brand new missionary to train together and a Sister in the zone went home. All is well in Zion.

I will attach some pictures of Lee's baptism for you! He was really happy. Then he came and played basketball with all of us yesterday for a Preparation Day activity. 

So here is what a normal day is like for Elder Shiu and I:
6:23 wake up and exercise for a while. We don't run any more, but we do this 7-minute workout that includes push-ups, sit-ups, planks, squats, etc...
7:30 eat breakfast
8 study, so I usually spend 30 minutes to create some teaching plans and finding scriptures and identifying specific blessings of the principles that we are going to teach.
9 Elder Shiu and I share what we learned and put our heads together to finalize the teaching plans. We might spend some time organizing lists of potential investigators that we are going to go by that day in a specific apartment complex.
10 Elder Shiu and I learn English grammar together.
11 Lunch... You don't want to know what we eat.
12-5 Spend some time finding people to teach through visiting part-member families, potential investigators, tracting and talking to people on the streets. 
5 Dinner! Yay, because the members make us good food that is good for us, except we always get dessert, which I used to like, but I would be totally fine with no dessert. 
6-9 usually 2-3 teaching appointments for families that we are teaching. 
9 plan for tomorrow
9:30-10:20 clean the apartment and brush teeth. 
10:20 pray and go to bed

So that is a fairly normal day. Elder Shiu is so awesome and we are working hard together. I hope that as the summer ends and there is one less Chandler child at home that everything goes well. God is in charge of His work, so I know that I am doing what I am supposed to be doing. Have a great week!

Love, Elder Chandler

August 19, 2013

Hello Mom!
I am writing you before Dad this week so I actually have time to say something, because Dad always gets the good stuff and then I feel bad because I don't know if what I say makes sense by the time my hour is almost up! Anyways California is wonderful and I love Elder Shiu with the same amount of love I have for everything else Asian, which is a lot!!

We are teaching a part-member family, the Ortegas, and they told me a story about how they were up in Oregon and saw a dancing LIberty Tax Service statue of Liberty. I said, "Oh, really? When was that?" They replied "Last march and it was doing a snow-rain mix" I told them "I remember that day!" and then we laughed because just like we knew each other in the pre-existence we also had met before in a less personal way before I even came on my mission. Or maybe that is a very personal way! Either way it was humorous.

We have had a whole bunch of meeting and it has been great to see new methods of finding, teaching and baptizing (of course the doctrine and principles are still the same, and the ordinance itself!) For example last Thursday Sister Joyce Tan came to our mission and gave a conference about something she called "Windows of Heaven" where we set aside some time of our day to go find the elect who God will place in our path. We know that God puts people in our path, and when we talk to everyone then we will find who God wants us to and when we are 100% worthy for the Spirit then we will know exactly what to say. So Elder Shiu and I tried it on Saturday, when we finally had 2 hours to find, and we talked to about 30 people in the park. We met nice people, mean people, black people and white people! We taught the first discussion to a group of druggies (for lack of a better term) and they were interested in learning more. I am not sure if they are the elect, but God wanted us to talk to them so we did. Hopefully this week we will have more time and opportunity to talk with more people and spread the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. 

The work of salvation is going forth and I am so happy! I mostly blame Elder Shiu for the constant happiness and spirit I feel, because we work in unity! Thanks for praying for me, I pray for you all too! I am glad Kennedy got to be at home and spend time with you and that Jackson is staying 'rooted' in his interests (That is a tree joke :) 

Have a great week!
love- Elder Chandler 

August 12, 2013

Thanks for the email. My companions are all done, so I have to go! I am so sorry... Is nate in Korea! See you next week

August 5, 2013

Hi Mom!

This week was great! Elder Shiu is teaching me Cantonese and I am teaching him English, although he speaks it well already. 

Is Nate (Elder Pratt) in South Korea? 

I wrote Dad an extra long email today, so I don't have much time, but the weather is good and we are teaching more than ever in this area and staying very busy! Congratulations on another successful year of girl's camp and on finishing the standard works! Paul is fun to read.

I owe you a good email next week! Everything is great here though :)

Love, Elder Chandler

Sunday, August 4, 2013

July 29, 2013

Things are going really good. i don't really know what to say. I have a cool experience this week! I am starting to talk like an Asian and I love it haha

Let me share an experience I had with the priesthood this week. I was on exchanges with a missionary in the zone who was struggling really bad. We will call him Elder X. Elder X just got a lot of sad and distressing news from home and was not sure what to do. He wants to be here, but also feels powerless to change for good the circumstances that have gone awry with his family. He asked me for a blessing on Friday and I said of course. He and I felt such a powerful feeling of peace and comfort come upon us as I laid my hands upon his head. The words of our loving Father were relayed by me through the spirit to dear Elder X. I don't remember much of what I said, but I do remember crying as I gave the blessing. yes, I still cry a lot. The priesthood is not a magical power or force, it is not a weapon or an agent for personal gain. The priesthood is the knowledge, love and authority of God for the salvation of His children. I want so much to always be worthy of this responsibility and excersize it in righteousness for the benefit of others.

That was the highlight I would say of the week. 

I hope all is well at home and I will hopefully hear from you next Monday!
Love, Elder Chandler

Thursday, July 18, 2013

July 16, 2013

Hi Mom,

Thank you for the email and slightly disturbing picture of the toothpick that was inside Harrison's body!! The weather is great here, a little hot, but there are no SevenElevens in our area so we did not get any slurpees :(

We had a great meeting on Wednesday with the missionaries in the stake and we all talked about charity for part of the meeting. I was impressed with how many other missionaries recognized the many blessings that come from charity. In chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel we learn about Christlike Attributes and as we develop charity the other attributes become part of who we are. It seems to me that as we are diligent and obedient and patient that we are able to work harder and as our efforts increase so does our love for the people we serve. 

I really love serving here in this area and I am excited to see what changes next week brings. If you are in the area on Saturday and going to the Newport Beach temple like you did a few months ago, don't come to the 1:30 session, because I will be in that one with a family from the ward whose son is getting his endowments out for his mission to Singapore. President Orgill gave us special permission to go and help him continue to prepare for a mission. He is a special kid.

This week was good, no complaints, and if I did have complaints there is nothing I could do about it anyways!!

Charity and Love --Elder Chandler 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

July 2, 2013

Hi Mom!

This Sunday Bishop Chapman relayed some information to the adults of the Santa Margarita ward (yes, I am still serving here) he did a good job helping inspire the member to have missionary work "on their minds". A great insight from a sister was that member's efforts often become concentrated on bringing new members in through conversion, and then on keeping them (retention). While those are essential components of the conversion process and the work of salvation, these efforts may be at the expense of those members who are currently in the ward and still need friends, responsibility and nourishment. She said that as we expend a portion of our efforts on each other ([Re]activation), in the ward our hearts will be knit together and other people will want to join in this fold. 

Her comment is a reference to something a prophet said years ago, but I felt like it was timely. I believe that the members we do have are the key to finding and bringing in the new members. We have been going to members of the ward council, and asking them about those people they think could benefit from a visit. Here is where I feel like we are bringing everything together -- The members of the ward council give us names and we fill our planners with those names around the appointments that we already have. We are not sitting and waiting for a phone call from the EQP telling us he lined up 12 teaching appointments, but we ARE planning in times to visit the 12 names he gave us! This has helped us bring the ward together and minister to those who need help in the ward.

President and sister Orgill will be introducing themselves on Thursday at a mission wide conference up in Irvine. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work with them!

Have a great week!
Love, Elder Chandler

Monday, July 1, 2013

June 24th, 2013

HI Mom,

I don't think that you have ever written me on a Saturday before! The reason that is so cool is because we are emailing today (Monday)! So if you hadn't emailed me on Saturday then I wouldn't have had anything to email back about and it would have thrown off the groove! 

Tomorrow we say goodbye to President and Sister Cook. They are spectacular and will be missed. 

Thank you for the awesome pictures of Mac! (where is he going?) and for the pictures of Jackson (He is smiling?!) That made my day! 

We have been teaching a lot and I am working on memorizing everything I can because I don't have very many things memorized. 

Hello to Michael Biancardi! Can't believe he is home already.

I know that the church is true and that missionary work is what I should be engaged in at this time. I hope you all are having a great campout and don't forget to share the gospel!

Love, Elder Chandler

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

June 18, 2013

Hi Mom!

Thank you for the wonderful update on your week and weekend, I am glad that fathers were able to spend time together. This week in California we have been working really hard. I know I say that every week, but this week especially we were working on working smart. A few highlights and specifics:
We compiled lists of people that have had positive contact with missionaries in geographical locations and organized them so that we can pull that list out whenever we are in an area. On  Sunday night we went on splits with 2 of the priests in the ward and knocked on a lot of doors and talked to a lot of people around our apartment complex. I went with Clay Coleman, who just graduated from high school and is doing a summer term at BYU then leaving on his mission to Singapore at the end of the summer. That is where President Clark was the president, AND we had had missionaries in our ward in the MTC who went there, so Clay will meet some of my best friends from the MTC! 
We are working on getting ward missionaries out, or members of the ward out with us every night of the week to help us find, fellowship and teach. We haven't found a new investigator in like 4 weeks, which is different than Oceanside, where we could find 2 or 3 a week just by being obedient! 
In other news I went on exchanges with a missionary named Elder Prusse (Proo-suh) who is from Salem, OR, did cross country, went to camp Baldwin and cam Meriwether, came to Lake Oswego stake dances, has the same color eyes and hair as me and the same shoulder bag from target! I gave him one of my ties that matched the tie I was already wearing and we, of course, wear the white shirt, black pants and shoes already. One of my favorite parts of the exchange was we were walking down the road and no one was around so we pretended to be robots and "marched" down the road saying "We are machines, we are machines" Elder Prusse is a blast!
I am excited for the big broadcast on Sunday at 3pm our time! I wonder what will be revealed.
Well we are having lots of great, clean fun and working hard and getting dirty in the service of out Lord! This week we are going to keep doing the same! I love being a missionary even though we ALWAYS have to get up earlier than 6:30 (often 5:00), and we work until 9pm and get to bed at 10:30 every night. I don't mind. A returned missionary visited this Sunday and he said that he is not tired anymore because he is not a missionary. I was so happy to hear that, because now it gives me the hope that one day I will be rested again. As for now, I have a renewed determination and dedication to work and wear out my physical body towards the end of bringing salvation to my dear brothers and sisters. So get some extra sleep this week for me :)
Love, Elder Chandler