Presented here are portions of Elder Daniel Willoughby’s ninth email from the Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission. If anyone wishes to send Daniel a message, write it in the comments and I will make sure he receives it.
Thanks for the wonderful letters. Wahoo Andrew Steinicke made SBO! I knew he would. I sent a letter of how to run for SBO and tips to follow like two or three weeks ago. It will probably get there in a week or so. It was a good letter, seems like he already knows how to get elected. Mom, when you give the letter to him, can you tell him to keep those things in mind through out his whole service as SBO? It will help him have a great time. Keep up the wonderful attitude. As Thomas S Monson said in December, “Become more focused on people than on things.”
Mom’s Questions Receive Their Answers
The food here is actually really good. They eat many noodles, rice, and meat. Most of the time I have meat mixed with rice and potatoes. My companion and I cook most days before we head out and then eat when we come home. Occasionally we eat at investigator’s houses or at restaurants. I really like this pasta kind of thing they eat. It is better than any pasta I had in America. I have only had one experience where I almost threw up from eating something. I had no idea what it was, but the Lord protects missionaries and I am perfectly healthy.
The part of the city where I live is very much like western culture. It is a big city, lots of cars, and lots of stores. If I could describe it any better I would. It’s a regular city with people working and doing their best. There is the rich class and the poor. The problem here that I see is the rich keep getting richer and the poor keep getting poorer.
Conference is probably being held right now right? I don’t know the time difference very well. We get to wait for conference to get here. My companion says when they send the tape we’ll watch it. Transfers are this Saturday so I’ll see what happens. I will go where the Lord will send me.
My companion and I were extremely blessed this week. We put in our best efforts to be obedient and strived to work effectively. I was able to baptize Beleg Jargal. His family was inactive and after visiting them for a while he wanted to be baptized. My companion, Altangerel, asked who he wanted to baptize him and he chose me. I was humbled yet excited for the wonderful choice he made to be baptized. He is 8 years old and his brother is 15. Hacan Jargal is an example to me of how he loves and cares for his younger brothers.
Sacrament meeting was incredible. We had many investigators come. So many people came that there weren’t enough seats. The Mongolians bore their testimony one after another. Our part-member family, Namanaa and Tac Cexer, who are like 15 and 17 — their parents came to church. I was so excited. Namanaa always has a smile on her face. It has had a good effect on her parents. Batgerel came as well. He is working on quitting smoking. His desire to become better will help him apply Christ’s atonement in his life. I was so happy to see him at church.
As for teaching English, I have received more hours to teach. It keeps me busy, teaching English and doing missionary work. I am still learning how to be better at getting Mongolians to speak English. I prepare lessons for them to speak simply then someone comes with really good English and makes the rest of the class nervous. I am figuring out how to adjust all my lessons in five minutes or less. It’s quite the task but the lord is with me.
The Life of Jesus Christ
Note: I am speaking in church this Sunday about the life of Jesus Christ. I asked Daniel for a few words that I can read from him over the pulpit.
Jesus Christ’s life was a perfect example to all of us of how to live our lives. As I serve in a completely different culture where the life of Christ is just beginning to become known to them I have pondered the reality of what he did. My companion (a Mongolian) is the only member in his family. He joined the church because his friend invited him to church. He now is serving in his own country and works diligently to share the gospel. His family lives close by, he doesn’t have to serve the Lord. He could go home — it is about a 20 minute bus ride. Why does he serve? Why does he do missionary work?
Because Christ accomplished the atonement we all can live with God, our Heavenly Father again. We can repent. This is the good news to the world. We can be with Heavenly Father again! All of us. Christ’s Father lived close by, He could have went home, but he didn’t. Christ loved us so much to do something we couldn’t. He paid the price for our sins. So much pain and suffering and never giving into temptation. He lived the perfect life to satisfy the demands of justice. Why did Christ suffer for our sins? Because he loved us. Christ changed the world, we didn’t deserve such mercy, it was out of pure love and charity. I know that everyone can be cleansed from sin through the atonement of Christ. He lives and His Church is on the earth today.
To Uncle Randy
Thanks for writing me. I am amazed at the changes going on all the time. You aren’t that old, but defiantly older than me that’s for sure. You look great for you age. Mongolia is unknown to most of the world. It is a culture that loves their country and works hard to develop themselves. They are accomplishing great things. I have been blessed to be apart of the wonderful work the Lord is about to do here. Mongolia will become an example to all the nations of how missionary work is to be done. The Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission had 96 baptisms in March.
Love, Elder Willoughby
List of Daniel’s missionary posts.