WKM!!

Dear Family and Friends,

The work is moving crazy fast here in Hermiston. We had another baptism this weekend. Kathy was baptized. What a wonderful day that was to see her so happy for making the decision to come and follow Jesus Christ.
We are watching every day as the people that we are teaching are making the steps needed to gain the conversion to the truth of this message. I have seen an increase in the faith of our investigators since the fast that we had for them. It is great to see them all be willing to make the steps that they need to make to gain the knowledge from god that this is true. Faith is such an amazing power that cant be put into words, but I know it works. God is there and wants us to believe in Him so that he can use that power of faith to bless our lives, so when others are doing that and experiencing the truth of it all IT IS A MIRACLE.
We have so much that is going well, we are teaching everyone as often as they will let us. Abel and Kristina are letting us meet with them EVERYDAY. They came to church and brought all the kids. What a wonderful family! We are excited for their baptisms in July, they are praying and working towards that date.

So Transfers have come and gone. I am staying here and so is my comp. Which means that we are staying in the Kennewick Washington Mission.
And This will be at least 4 1/2 months in Hermiston I love the people that are here and everyone that I am around. I am very excited for the next 6 Weeks!!

Love you all so much.

Elder Cordon

#SSB

Dear Family & Friends,
What a great week to end off the Transfer! We made the goal to MAKE SURE we talked to everyone! It was rocky at the first of the week with lots of service to do and needing to deal with the car, but by the end of the week it brought miracles. Talking to everyone is not always easy, there are some many things that get in the way, but I think that is why is brings so many miracles. It increases our faith and power in the work. The miracles don’t always come from right then, but it does allow the Lord to increase our spiritual power to be able to speak with the power of the Lord.
We spent a lot of time in Butte Ward this week we really want to help that ward blossom into what we know it can be. With that added effort we got 3 new investigators in that ward, and we put Nick OnDate for Baptism. Using the Book of Mormon Invite! The Church has been restored and The Spirit witnesses to that one people have a open heart and mind and wanting to listen. The Spirit will always testify of truth but God wants you to Want To listen, without that real intent you will probably miss it. Well Nick didn’t miss it. He felt the Spirit and knew that it was different then anything he had ever experienced before.
He has been to many churches and has had a relationship with God, but knew for himself that this was different, that it was more.  AWWWWW IT WAS SO AWESOME. The spirit was so strong and was teaching him the whole time.  He is on date for May 30th and we will be taking him on a church tour tonight with his sister Sandra, and their kids. Our plan is to also get her to make to goal for that date as well.  Sacrifice Brings Blessings.

So another Transfer as come and gone. where has the time gone I really don’t understand.  I will hit my year mark this transfer. CRAZY

I love you all so much
Elder Steven Cordon

1 Word…. MACAU! 

Dear Family and Friends, 

Well a lot of stuff went down last week we got a referral and it turned out to be Elder Wongs mom’s cousin and well she recognized him right away and it turns out she is a lost sheep from about 20 years back. She was anti’d by her family really bad and then went less active then fell off the radar and after having an amazing visit with her, she referred us to a bunch of others and I was very happy but even more than me elder wong is very happy because these are all his family! So we got the go from President Hawks and started working on them! 
Well last night we had to head to Wanchai to do our turn at this welcome center thing the church is trying here (its like a visiting center). Well right when we were wrapping up we went and got some dinner and then we get a call from the zone leaders saying Elder Wong will be leaving to Macau!! This is crazy we have only been together 3 weeks and something must have happened because its only our companionship and the Macau companionship that are affected. I was pretty happy for Elder Wong but he was not to happy because we just found all his family and he is really the key to it all working out. Well we forgot something at the church so we had to head back and as we walked down some stairs we ran into President and Sister Hawks just before they walked into the Elevator so we talked for a minute then I informed them that Elder Wong got the news and President asked him how he was feeling about it. Well Elder Wong was not gonna say he was not happy but you could tell he wasn’t too pleased to be leaving. 
Well we scheduled an appointment with his aunt so he could get a goodbye before he headed out and so hopefully I could get to know her better. Well when we were talking with her. We got a call from President and he asked what we were doing and we said we were in a lesson so he said okay I will call you back but when I call you don’t answer the phone (a little weird). Well he called and elder wong answered the phone anyway then president said I thought I told you not to answer the phone, but I am glad you did because I had the right companionship but the wrong Elder, Elder Cordon will be packing his bags. 
We’ll it was Ironic because when Elder wong was talking to president I was talking to his aunt telling her how I would love to switch Elder Wong places then he hangs up comes and grabs my shoulder and says well thats what just happened. I was very very surprised because I thought I had no hope in going to macau. Only the Uk and Locals get to go there, but sure enough I am going so it won’t be for more than 2 months but its happening! 

Well love you all! 
Elder Jared Cordon

Children of God

Dear family and friends,

This week was an incredible week! The best part about it though was without a doubt the weekend. This is considering the fact that we had a powerful mission changing meeting on Monday, and that I got to go to the temple in Orlando on Thursday.

The best part about this week was that on Saturday at 5:00 Aniya, Cheyenne, and Marquez were all baptized. It was one of the sweetest baptismal services I have ever been part of. The turnout was great and the spirit was strong. I would like to just take a minute to tell all of you about the three beautiful children we entered into a covenant with their Heavenly Father.

Aniya:
I have been working with Aniya since the first week I got to the area. We never ceased to be amazed at how impressive she was. She was only 11 years old when we first started teaching her and she had a stronger and more doctrinal sound grasp on the gospel than many adults. She carried herself with eloquence and she stood up for what she knew was right among her peers. When she entered young women’s her talents were only magnified. Just a few weeks ago she taught the Family Home Evening lesson to a group of adult converts and she lead the conversation with grace and everyone felt edified.

Cheyenne:
While we were working to the lay the ground work for Aniya so that she could get baptized suddenly after New Years Cheyenne came into the picture. Cheyenne is Aniya’s younger sister. We started the lessons over with her to help her have a good foundation of the gospel and of other restored truths. After a few weeks of working with her we finally saw the light at the end of the tunnel and looked like their dad who was baptized 4 years ago last Friday was able to finally get things lined up for them to be baptized as well. Cheyenne in just a few short weeks has shown immense growth and an increasing level of maturity. By the time the baptism came around she was bearing a strong testimony in the Book of Mormon and in the truthfulness of the church.

Marquez:
We venturing into new neighborhoods about 5 months ago when we saw a dirt road that was off to the side that lead to some distant homes. There are not very many dirt roads in our area so it peaked our curiosity so we went walking down to find some people to share the gospel with. The first house we came to was the home of Ms. Betty, Marquez’ grandmother. We would visit Ms. Betty from time to time and about a month after we started visiting her we became acquainted with Marquez when we helped him get the Christmas lights out of storage for his grandmother. After talking for a bit I told Marquez about scouts on Wednesday night and asked if he would like to come and join the group. He seemed really excited by the idea. He came the next Wednesday and well the rest is history.

This final weekend was a battle to get everyone ready for the baptism, but miracles abounded and right prevailed. Aniya and Cheyenne’s father was able to baptize them, and one of Marquez’ young men’s leaders who has been a great example to him was able to baptize him. While they were all changing, Elder Jorgensen and I were able to stand in front of a large crowd of members and non members and the teach the message of the restoration while wearing our baptismal whites with the font as the backdrop. It was very powerful and probably the best setting I have been afforded to preach the gospel. I never thought that I would be able to say that I had done that. As we taught I felt the spirit speak very powerfully to my the heart that this message is indeed true and I hope that a similar witness was born to the those who sat in the congregation.

On Sunday in order for Aniya and Cheyenne to be confirmed by their farther he was sustained by the congregation to be an elder and then I conferred upon him the Melchizedek priesthood, and ordained him to be an elder. Right after that he stood up and confirmed his daughters by that priesthood. Then I was blessed to confirm Marquez. It was an amazing weekend! I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father that I have been able to be part of the 3 incredible lives. I also found out that I am getting transferred to another part of Jacksonville this week Wednesday so it was a wonderful finished to an life changing experience while I served in the mandarin 2nd ward. I am excited for the amazing adventure ahead.

Thank you for all the love and support you have shown me and I hope that you know how much I love and appreciate every single one of you.

I love y’all!

Elder Joshua Cordon

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Another Transfer Done

Dear Friends and Family,

So I am staying in my area I am with the same companion which means that we can keep our momentum going. I love this area and it is so very beautiful. I love the wonderful blessings that are pouring out as we are moving forward in faith. Seth and Liz had their baby blessed this weekend and Monty and Deedee are still doing awesome. They are studying for an hour every morning. WOW They are such examples of what it takes to get asnswers from the spirit. I love that I am able to be on the mission and see the miracles and be an instrument in Gods hands.

We are also teaching this wonderful girl of a family it is the oldest daughter of this young family. She is 11 and has been going with her grandmother to church for many years and she wants to get baptized so we set a goal of march 14. We are hoping that bring the lessons into her home will also invole more of the family with her.

Very short but more to come, next week with more miracles happening everyday. 🙂

I love you all so much
Thank you.
Elder S Cordon

#NEW

Dear Family and Friends,

I am in a new area, with a new companion, and a whole new set of challenges. I am so excited for this transfer and everything that it has to offer. There is a lot of people here that are seeking after truth and are ready to make changes in their life to come closer to Christ. I love the people that I meet, what an amazing knowledge that we have to know that we are all children of our Heavenly Father and brothers and sisters in his family. It really brings it into perspective of why we share this gospel.

I have been sent to Wenatchee WA. what a beautiful area this is and I my even be here for Christmas, which would be just great. We already have snow capped mountains. SO BEAUTIFUL. Gods creation of this world is such a wonderful gift I am glad that we have beauty in this world that we can fill our surroundings with.

Sincerely,

Elder Steven Cordon

Alligators, Snakes, and Trios

Dear Family and Friends,

Sorry I was silent last week, the pictures are of what I was doing instead of emailing. I hope that you agree it was time well spent, and if you don’t well too bad it already happened.

St. Augustine is a really cool city. It has some really neat attractions, definitely some of the coolest stuff I have ever seen on my mission. I got two items checked off of my bucket list, I saw huge gator, and I held one. Next task is to find one in the wild and poke it with a stick. A really long stick mind you. Okee Fanokee Swamp here I come! haha oh man that would be cool. 

Along with seeing the gator farm we got to see the Fort they had there and it was really cool. It was definitely a lot bigger than I thought it would be looking from the outside. Needless to say it was a really awesome trip! It all could not have happened without Elder and Sister Christensen though, they help finance all us poor missionaries and made the itinerary. I am very thankful for kind people like them!

Another interesting thing that happened this past week was that Elder Frazier went to the temple and I was in a trio for the day. It was an interesting experience. Luckily I got to pick were we go for the day, so I was able to stay in my area and keep the work moving along. Both of the Elders I was with are in full bike areas so they appreciated the break. Exchanges are nice because they mix up the monotony and you learn so much from serving with other missionaries. 

We got a call from President Craig yesterday and Kevin and Lori can get baptized this week so that is incredibly exciting! Also, we had transfer calls last night and every companionship of elders in the zone got changed except for us, and all the sisters in my district got changed, and 2 sisters in the other district. It was a massive change that I did not see coming! That just means that I get to build a friendship with a lot more missionaries though which is very exciting! Wohoo! Friends!

Love ya’ll!
Elder Joshua Cordon

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DAY OF VICTORY

Dear Family and Friends,

Well this past week has been an interesting one. Elder Hamilton got shipped out and got replaced by Elder Fraizer. He is from Washington State and was actually trained by Elder Newbold just before Elder Newbold trained me. He just hit the ground running, and we never missed a beat. It is interesting to see that the longer I have been out the easier adjusting to a companion seems to be. We had a zone meeting the next day that went great, an exchange the day after, and then conference all weekend! We have been crazy busy since we drove away from transfers! After this weekend though it seems pretty solid that Kevin & Lori, Jim, Steven and Lilly will all be baptized this month! The ward is behind all of them 100% and it is just so incredible to see! It seems that every week my mission just gets better and better!

General Conference was amazing this weekend!! If you didn’t get the chance to watch or listen to it, check it out. I personally loved Elder Ballard’s talk a lot now that I think about that one. He has really grown on me since I have been a missionary. Before I could tell you who my favorite apostle was, now I am starting to appreciate them all!

So a good story from this past week was the lesson we taught to Steven about the health law of the church. After teaching the lesson we extended the commitment to him to live this commandment which includes no: Coffee, Tea, Alcohol, Tobacco, or Illegal Drugs. He said he would start it all as soon as he ran out of Tea. Honestly not wanting him to put off the blessings that could flow his way if he where to start immediately I invited him to start living it immediately and throw out all of his tea right now. After a brief moment of contemplation he said alright, if you walk with me to the dumpster. As we walked I sung “onward christian soldiers.” It was epic! I wish you could only know Stevo and you would realize how hilarious this was! As we walked he yelled, “Today, is a day of VICTORY”! Just before he dumped them I suggested that he say a prayer asking for strength to live the word of wisdom from here on out. He started the prayer by saying, “Dear Heavenly Father, today is a day of victory, victory over the demon of tea!..” It was awesome!! I love these moments on my mission definitely one of my favorite experiences!

Stevo (Steven) and Elder Cordon

Stevo (Steven) and Elder Cordon

I hope today will be a day of victory for all of ya’ll, a victory over your own personal demons!

Love ya’ll!
Elder Cordon

The Dawn Of A New Day!

Dear Family and Friends,

I may have shared this already, but I got a fortune cookie once that said, “Relish the transitions in your life, they will happen regardless.” Well I am approaching one of those big transitions of the mission. A new companion. Spending 24/7, with a few exceptions, with the same person for 4 1/2 months can either create a great friendship or quite the opposite. I am lucky it was not the latter of the two. Elder Hamilton is one great missionary!! I feel like part of me is leaving. Indeed he will be missed! I wish him the best of luck as he finishes out the last two transfers of his mission. Fleming Island is blessed by the best to have him coming their way.

My new companion is going to be Elder Frazier, who just so happened to be trained by Elder Newbold just before he trained me. So basically we are brothers. I am excited for this next phase of my missionary experience!

This past Sunday was hands down the best Sunday of my mission so far! We successfully committed several people to come to church that day and most were able to come! Even Steven who said that he had to work that morning was able to get work off early to come!! It was so awesome! I can tell the difference it made on the ward, there was just a contagious excited feeling. In all we were able to share this wonderful experience with Bro & Sis Nesbit, Bro Colney, Steven Bryant, and Daniel. All of them seemed to thoroughly enjoy themselves!! What a blessing it was to have all of them come! The ward just wrapped their arms around every one of them and the love was tangible. They all have baptismal dates on for the coming month and I hope all the pieces come together that will allow them to join the fold.

Something strange that happened last week was that we were asked to do a baptismal interview for the YSA sisters. Not that being asked was strange, but rather the circumstances that surrounded the interview. We were sent to the large campus of UNF and had to somehow find this dorm which proved to be a challenge in and of itself. Upon finally locating the dorm hall we learn that the sisters wont even be there for the interview which is regular protocol. They told us to just wait in the lobby and she will come down to meet us. So here we are on a college campus in a dorm hall just sitting in the lobby waiting for a girl. It didn’t help that we were wearing suits and we appeared to be lost. We also had no idea what this girl looked like, so we just said high to every girl in the lobby– hoping each would react in such a way that let us know if she was who we were looking for. After a few awkward attempts, we decided to just take a seat and act like we knew what we were doing. No sooner had we done so that the awkward tension subsided and a sense of control over this situation returned. In a few short minutes the baptismal candidate arrived that interview commenced.

Moral of the above story and the lesson for you all this week, always act like you know what you are doing even if you don’t.

Love, Ya’ll!

Elder Joshua Cordon

Mandarin Zone Elders

Those with a second tie around their necks are the Elders being transferred.

My Companion and I

Elder Hamilton and I

Woo Deep Ward- Jared

Woo Deep!!

Well off to the New Territories. This is not by any surprise actually its what I was hoping to get. I got an amazing start in the Wanchai and now I got the Hong Kong shock out of my system and am really looking to step up my efforts every day. This New area is in Tuen Mun and I am in the Butterfly Ward or in Chinese Woo Deep! I have an awesome new companion Elder Falk and he is from East Salt Lake. Actually He is the first 18 year old in Hong Kong. My apartment is awesome I have Elder Siebach, Elder Chan, and Elder Falk. We also all have May birthdays. Its exciting work here in the Tuen Mun area. There is 700,000 people living here. Its also been over 2 1/2 years since the Woo Deep ward has seen a baptism. So we are eager to change things and after the first couple of days under wraps that is looking more and more possible everyday. Elder Falk has been doing some awesome work before I got here and we are not looking to slow down so I will keep you posted. Also I will send a picture of the awesome view from Chelsea Heights, our awesome apartment. In the boonies of Hong Kong we still live on the 31st floor.

Love you all

Elder Cordon
Elder Cordon and his new companion