Monday, October 26, 2015


Bong Mori, Elder Slavens, Bong Vuen, Elder Hall

Elder Slavens and I got to cap off our transfers with 2 more baptisms and 2 confirmations! Bong Vuen and his wife Bong Mori got baptized yesterday.

Unfortunately, Elder Slavens and I wiped out on the way home from the interview for them also. I was doping him, because of lots of bike problems in this city. It was night time, and as we were going down the dirt path with potholes (not light from the Holy Ghost), there came a hill, and I conscientiously put on the brakes and started going down. Halfway down the hill I accidentally hit a rock, and because I had a 300 pound load on a 20 pound bike, we ate it. I ripped my korean cut pants (that were way too tight), broke my camera (still usable though--I just cant use the display, haha), and got some sweet scars. It was nice though, it had to happen eventually--that road is real rocky.

Too much Hall for one bike 
(Elder Hall "doping" Elder Hall)

Moral of the story is you can't trust the system.

In other news, Elder Slavens and I are the self-proclaimed "Most Inexperienced Companionship of the Mission" (MICotM). Yet, we put our heads down and get grinding. This transfer our inexperience got 4 whole baptisms, but why? Because His grace is sufficient. I know that alone, Elder Slavens and I would just be making noise, but through the Spirit of God and the grace of God, we managed to have a good transfer. It's such a testimony builder of the Atonement of Jesus Christ to know that if we are willing to put forth our effort, He will reward us.

So, with the recent baptisms, we realized our investigator pool disappeared, so we went a little harder on contacting, and because we are just the MICotM, we got maybe 1 return appointment the whole week. HOWEVER, we got 2 referrals from our investigators, and they are both super solid! I feel like it's too good to be true sometimes, but that's only because the way the world offers joy, it always is too good to be true, but when its God's happiness, its good, and its true. 



Editor's Note: I found a bunch of pics and a video on Elder Slavens blog. I just added them to the "Other Pics" page.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Khaw, Baptisms, and Bees

Transfer calls were last night--Elder Slavens and I are STAYING TOGETHER. It's actually really exciting, because we work really fluidly together, and we get a lot done. 

Khaw. Mother. I learned how to make the most delicious food dish there is in Cambodia. Khaw. I will make it for you when I get back, and it will change your life. It will strengthen your testimony. It will shine a new light on living for an eternity. By tasting just one taste, every care in your life will slip away due to its sheer deliciousness. 

We took around the ponderize lesson to a ton of less actives in our area this past week, and it got results! I saw some people at church (and in church clothes) that I had never even seen wear a shirt! Haha. They are really excited when we bring over a bunch of Jesus pictures with lines on the back to write on, and they get to keep them to write a scripture on. 

Also, we had two baptisms yesterday! Savuth and Ma. One is the teenager, and the other is the kid with not huge, fluffy hair. They were both referrals from the guy who looks 40 that is also in baptismal clothes (he baptized his kid with the fluffy hair). And during a Cambodian baptism (especially where the baptismal font is outside and everyone has to stand up to see), you kind of lose all spirituality. Well not kind of, more like 100%. We had kids like playing in the font and had to tell them to get out so we could do the baptism (and they were still kind of playing while we did the baptism). One kid stole Elder Slavens camera and videoed me baptizing Savuth. All sorts of little kids doing lots of little kid things. But I mean that's Cambodia for ya. 

And for the highlight of the week besides the baptism: Teaching Bong Vuen last night. After the lesson he was like, "Elder, I believe for real. Last night I had another dream. I was just walking down the road when all of a sudden a bee stings me, so I pulled it off and threw it. Then another one came, and then another and another, until I was covered in bees, and I didn't know what to do, so I prayed, and as soon as I prayed they all disappeared. So I know He answers our prayers." That was cool. As soon as he said, "I had another dream," Elder Slavens and I both scooted up closer to him as he was telling the story so we wouldn't miss anything.  He and his wife, Mori, are getting baptized next week, and they are so ready to be baptized. 

There was so much that happened this week that I don't have the energy to type. So you will just have to wait another year and a half to hear all my stories. Haha. 

Also, ONLY 2 MONTHS AND 6 DAYS UNTIL CHRISTMAS (Editor's note: That's when we get to Skype. Last time we Skyped was Mother's Day.)


Elder Hall

Monday, October 12, 2015

Parable of the Dirt Road

I watched conference (super spiritual and very applicable to me, fell asleep for a sec, but that's all good. Favorite talk "What lack I yet?" one.) and wanted to do my own quasi conference talk:

In Cambodia you have dirt roads, and when you get dirt roads where it always rains, there are tons of potholes. So what happens is the potholes form and the motos all find the best way around the pot holes. This makes like a better path on the existing dirt road, and you take it to avoid the biggest bumps. However, at night, when you don't have the clear light of the day to help you get around the potholes, you hit some big ditches and pot holes and maybe you fall off your bike (maybe you don't, but either way you ruin your bike and pop tires). To avoid this problem, Elder Slavens and I have to take the long way around through the city so that we can ride on non-bumpy roads with lights. It pretty much doubles the distance. But saves bikes. and scars. This is applicable to us in real life, because we have the option to take the path that seems like the shortcut to happiness, but isn't lit and has lots of potholes. Lots of people end up taking that road and get themselves stuck, fall over, or break their bike. However, we don't have to do that with the light that the gospel brings. We have the Book of Mormon to guide us through life, and we have the Spirit to light the path and show where the pot holes are. Why take the path without the Spirit when just a little bit of sacrifice guarantees happiness and the companionship of the Holy Ghost and a lit path? Keep the spirit. Follow the prophet. Read the scriptures. 2 Nephi 32:5


Elder Hall