Improvement and Progression – Josh

Dear family and friends,

So, it was the first preparation day since Christmas that there wasn’t any sunshine. It’s amazing what kind of difference weather makes on attitude. It is not that am not happy but I’m a little more relaxed when it’s dark and gloomy outside. We are going to take advantage of all the rain though and play some sports out in the mud. This should be a lot of fun!

Fun thing that happened last week was that the day of transfers I knew that my old ward mission leader and his wife would be driving the missionaries from the ward to the transfer building. So I arranged ahead of time for us to meet up and get some lunch while they’re here in town. It was great to see them again and hear about how Deepcreek is doing. It reaffirmed the fact that I really want to go back and visit that Ward shortly after my mission. I definitely have a lot of good friends there.

My mission trainee Elder Barcala got transferred here to Jacksonville, and he is serving in the area next to mine. However, it is across the river and it is not in my zone. I don’t know how often I’ll see him but I am happy that he was finally able to train, something he was really looking forward to doing.

While most of the missionaries in my zone stayed put we did however get a new district leader and new sister training leaders in the zone. In order to get the district leaders up to speed with the vision that Elder Hamilton and I have established we got lunch at chipotle with the district leaders. There’s something really nice about having a meeting outside over lunch. It just really makes things feel official, yet relaxed. I feel like there will be a lot of good things happening here in this in the next couple months.

We have been trying to get our companionship more integrated with the ward. After initiating some game plans we came up with to strengthen our relationship with the bishop and with ward members it feels like things are really starting to change. After having nobody sign up for dinner to feed us the first two months of February we filled our calendar for this week on Sunday. We also lined up several service projects throughout the week for the ward members. Some of the advice that we got from the stake presidents meeting we had on Sunday was to befriend ward members so that they could trust us with their friends.

We had already decided to initiate that idea so it was good to see that as we follow the spirit or vision was aligned with there’s just in time for us to see results the very week they suggested it. I hope that by the time I leave here missionaries will be begging to come to this area knowing the members will help them in all aspects of the work.

I guess one thing I never expected a mission would teach me is that of problem-solving and creativity skills. Truly you cannot just go through the work every day doing the same thing. You will have little success and you won’t be very happy. However, when you do your best to come up with good ideas and good ways to create change things really do improve, a lesson and A skill I hope to apply to everything I do for the rest my life. As Winston Churchill put it “to improve is to change to be perfect is to change often.”

More importantly, I have learned that true change comes from centering our lives on Jesus Christ and making an attempt to be more like Him. Not only is He the perfect example of how we should live, but He is also the way that we change. It was His atoning sacrifice that gives us that ability. What a blessing it is to be able to partake of that blessing each and every day! I Love my Savior Jesus Christ, and I know He loves every single one of us.
How can you change this week to improve your life?

Elder Joshua Cordon


Causeway Bay!!!… that’s my ward!

Dear leihdeih(you all),

Well one more week down! This was great minus the water heater, for the shower, being broken… But hey I had a lot faster showers which gave me more time to get ready in the morning!

Things have really been picking up. We have a baptismal date with another shortly on the way and some others with potential. Its been a fight in this area but I feel like it has really been picking up nicely!

There is a really cool thing that our mission does! Its called My Conversion Story Fireside. Its when all the missionaries who are going home at the end of each transfer pick one of their recent converts who tell their conversion story! It was a great tool we used for our investigator who was trying to receive a witness and was wondering how it might come!

We also had a huge meeting with all the ward and stake leaders in the surrounding area about how the members and the missionaries can work together better. It was really good for both of us. We have been able to see the the success of one ward with less actives. The secret is really with the members on less actives we missionaries may have got them there but they will only stay if the ward will make an effort. Less actives are a huge problem here. One ward took the initiative with the members and they have about 20 LA’s at church a week and that’s a constant number even with them becoming and staying active again.

I also learned a great deal of importance about commandments. Never be scared of the commandments this church has, their no better way to know if Joseph Smith was a prophet then to partake of his fruits, like the Book of Mormon, or the word of wisdom. If you follow the words of wisdom and you receive one of the specific promised blessing of that commandment then there is a witness that Joseph Smith was a prophet.

John 7: 17 “If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.”

We used this with our investigator and it went great!

Also at the End of the Month Elder Holland will be coming so that should be awesome!

Elder Jared Cordon

Another Great Week! -Jared

Dear Family and Friends,

Well its been another interesting week with things just getting more interesting this week. First to start the week off right I did my first hike in Hong Kong and that was pretty unreal!! also the card reader for my card is not working so pictures will be sent promptly. But we have decided to drop our fist investigator. He is a nice old 83 year old man but when he says he can promise he won’t commit adultery, well then we must rethink how well our efforts have been working. So this week we will be meeting one last time, unless of course he decides to read the Book of Mormon and has a desire to learn and accept then of course we will teach him again.

But with him going down our other new investigator is on the climb and he will be receiving a baptismal date after new years for sure! Things get hard around new years cause everyone has work off and a lot of people go to mainland and a lot of tourist come here. So it will be interesting but after the short delay in the work we will be able to pick right back up.

On other news we have found way to successfully contact families which has a very large challenge so far. What you need is to have a family you know in a park then you play with them and all the other parents see how nice we are and then want to talk to us! It worked yesterday when we went to a park and found a father and daughter we had taught twice and then after playing with them earned the ears of there friends, So if all goes well we will have our first full family lesson this next week! I will keep you updated!

Well things are moving here everyone is having a lot of success recently. The lord has been leading us to his prepared people!

I love you all Have a great week and Happy New Year!

Elder Cordon

A Message of Thanks

Hello Family and Friends,

Hey sorry the missed email last week! We had a bit of a mix up! Well the work has been hard and it has been slow. But we are always seeing new miracles! One thing I would like to tell you about thats special to Hong Kong members. Its All the helpers that come from south east asia.

I have had the priviledge in being able to bless the sacrament for the saturday branch and to be able to be a witness for a baptism. These branches being almost entirely women are from tuesday to sunday. These sisters will leave there families to come to Hong Kong and become domestic helpers. They only have one day a week off and they dont decide when. So they will help them by having meetings all week. I have never felt a greater spirit in a sacrament meeting than in the one with these sisters, they truly have humbled themselves before god and he has worked many miracles in all there lives. Many of these sisters have seen greater challenges than most would ever hope to endure but through it I have seen some the most amazing members. Although there time off is very little every week and they give most of their day to church You will still find them going out to parks and inviting others to come to church or by standing on the street trying to talk to people. If all the members in the church were to have this kind of love or faith, how great would be the harvest of souls, and the growth in the kingdom of god. So I just want to give a shout out to them and their amazing faith and encourage all to learn from their example and follow the words of our prophet in remembering what kind of a gift our Lord would want for his brithday.

I love you All!

Elder Jared Cordon

From Biking in the Boonies to Combing the City Blocks -Joshua

Dear Family and Friends,

So this last week mixed a lot of things up for me. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but needless to say I haven’t been disappointed at all. Saying goodbye to everybody last week was hard, but change is always for the better. I get the wonderful pleasure of serving with one of the best Elders in the whole mission Elder Hamilton. He has been out a whole year longer than me and I am looking forward to the many lessons that he will undoubtedly teach me. We get along great which is perfect because we have too much on our plates to be worried about resolving petty arguments.

Being a Zone Leader isn’t as taxing on my time as much as I thought it would be, which is wonderful because we got to spend a lot of our time over the past couple of days in the act of finding. As a result, the Lord pored out blessing from on high and we found 4 new families to teach in only a matter of a few days. There is a lot of great work to do in this area and I am more than ready to hit the pavement to get things rolling. I am grateful for the work that has already been done here because I get the blessed opportunity of seeing one of our investigators get baptized this weekend. His name is Solomon and he is from Sudan. He is very humble and very excited to get baptized this weekend. He was inviting a bunch of people at church yesterday to his baptism.

Some of the good changes that I have experienced this week include: upgraded from crappy apartment to super nice one, upgraded from biking to car, upgraded from no gym to a gym every other day, upgraded from trailer park/ ghetto tracting to tracting in tons of apartment complexes. Those are just a few, but I appreciate every one of them. Luckily for me one of the fears I had was not realized which was that we would not be fed on Thanksgiving because we got fed twice.

I have big hopes here. There is a lot to do and we need to grow our teaching pool a lot more, but I have no doubt that as we labor diligently the Lord will bless us. He has been doing that my whole mission. We truly have a Father in Heaven who knows each and every one of us personally. My testimony of that has grown so immensely since the start of my mission. Another aspect of my testimony that has grown is that of the power that can be felt from reading the Book of Mormon. Every time I read it, I feel like I am getting a big hug from God, and Boy does that feel good!

Have a wonderful week! I love ya’ll!


Elder Joshua Cordon

So close you could almost taste it! Release your inhibition!

Well hello there!

Alright 2 more weeks to go then Hong Kong here I come! There have been some nice mix ups this last week to remind me the importance of the MTC and other things just make me really wanna leave!

This week Elder Cederlof and I have been able to see what it feels like to truly work through the Lord with our investigators! We have been struggling along with one. She didn’t feel our messages relation to her and she wasn’t experiencing what we were saying!

So finally we buckled down and decided we need to hit straight from the source! We prepared a lesson about the love of Christ! Although it was not exactly how we planned, she felt the love of Christ! (I want to remind everyone this is not a real investigator) but, the Spirit there was!

She has been complaining about her knee hurting and making work bad for her. So we felt prompted to show her the Bible video about Jesus healing the palsy stricken man. Then we shared testimonies about Christ healing us through blessings we have received. She started tearing up, then we were prompted to ask her if she had faith enough to be healed, she started crying again, and said whimpering yes I do. After the blessing we knew the spirit was there and God answered our prayer! We then being prompted told her about baptism and how the spirit she is feeling could be with her always! We then invited her after more testimonies, she started balling again, after a long long silence she said yes!

That lesson was amazing the spirit was so strong and I could definitely feel the spirit working through me! We now know what it feels like to have our investigator experience the discussion!

Whats been hard this week is we ended up not moving to WyView. My whole branch did but us Cantonese, we are sadly getting moved to a new branch. So after saying all these goodbyes I feel like I should be on a plane right now. sadly that is not until 2 weeks. But I did get my Chinese tags with my Chinese name in Characters! I do know how to read that one at least!

Also after long discussions with the Elders from Hong Kong I can not wait! All my experiences with the Hong Kong people have really helped me develop a love for them!

The work is Hastening and as my brother said the miracle will not only be through Missionaries but also members! Open your mouth and The Lord will fill it for you!

Everyone Take Luck

Love Elder Jared Cordon