Saturday, March 23, 2013

Riley #10 - A Plea for Referrals, Splits, and UCLA

Boundaries for the LA Mission - Palos Verdes is on the right (Click to Enlarge)

Dear Mother,

     Thanks for your email. It was great to hear about Mollie and know what is happening with her. Today has been rather busy, because we are moving apartments, so I probably don't have too much time to write.
     This week feels like it has been busier than even last week. Yesterday, my companion and I gave talks in two separate sacrament meetings. It is part of the plan the Chinese missionaries set up to find more Chinese investigators.

      The Chinese program is fairly new. In fact, the transfer before I came was the first time they had full-time Chinese missionaries. Before that they were put in an English area and would teach in Chinese only if there was a referral. They weren't able to devote all of their time to finding and teaching Chinese, like we do now. Thus, many members and missionaries don't really know about the Chinese missionaries.
      To remedy this, my companion, Elder Hsiao, has been working through the stake presidents. He set us up to speak in each ward as the companion speaker to the high councilman. In our talks, we were to include a plea to the members to help us find Chinese people to teach. Since it is inefficient to tract to find them, our main way of finding people is through member referrals.
With Elder Tsiao
     Even in English areas, it is well known that the most effective way to find people is through the members' referrals. The hope is that through these 'touring talks' we will be able to let people know about the Chinese missionaries and encourage them to do help the missionaries find people.
     The talks went well, particularly Elder Hsiao's, who had people come up to him afterward with ideas of people they would contact.

    I had my first experience as an English Elder on Friday. We went on splits with our District Leader, so I was paired up with his companion as an English missionary.
     We were on bikes in the San Pedro area, which has some large hills. We did a little tracting and met with a member. It was quite a different experience than being in the Chinese program, as I could actually talk. Also, in the approach to finding people, it was quite different. We don't really do any tracting or street contacting, so that was my first time really experiencing it.
San Pedro Area
    We also went up to UCLA on Tuesday. There are a lot of Chinese people in the area, and we are trying to figure out how we can use UCLA to help us find them. I was amazed at the size of the campus.


     We didn't really find much from the visit, and it was finals week so everyone there was busy. We think we will head back in a few weeks when a new semester starts.

Also, the church opened a new website for Chinese members returning to China. It's at <-(Click for link) There are also more videos in Asian languages without subtitles.

                                                    (In Cantonese)
                                                                                      Elder Bowman