Presented here are portions of Elder Daniel Willoughby’s third email from the Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission.
Everyone looks great with the new baby! Congratulations!
Wow! Mongolia is truly incredible! The plane ride was really short — I was able to study a lot and also sleep. When we arrived at the mission home after some driving we instantly were thrown into the work here. It was a dream come true to see how organized this mission is. I feel like I have a million things to learn and it’s just what I’ve always wanted. Elder Weaver and I were even able to be in a new member lesson on Friday the day we got off the plane. We were so jet lagged — I love the feeling — it was such a challenge to pay attention. Reminded me of track. I was able to contribute a bit to the lesson.
The weather is warming up. We spent two hours in the Black market. It was freezing but I bought a coat and Mongolian traditional clothes. I am perfectly warm now. :) So far it’s has been amazing to see this country.
The people are incredible. We are allowed to walk up to people and talk to them about our church. Some missionaries said they don’t know what that one rule was about, the “they have to ask you why you are here” kind of thing. They are so, so receptive to the Gospel. The AP’s get 15 referrals for 20 contacted people. Our first day they took us out to start talking to people. I jumped at the opportunity. The Mongolians understand me! I just need to learn more words so I can talk more to them. I mostly said I came from America because Christ’s church helped my family and I know it can help yours. There is so much work to do here. The members are amazing, in the classes they teach about praying about the Book of Mormon and gaining a testimony.
I’ve noticed that our investigators are always willing to pray and they have great faith. So far I’ve been able to bear testimony to Star Son. We focus on strengthening members by inviting them to have faith in Christ. Yesterday we taught Namsoran who is a less active member about tithing. I was able to share with the help of the Holy Ghost my testimony of tithing. She is developing her faith again and we are going to keep working with her.
My hero is President Andersen! It’s a dream come true to see how much effort he puts into the work here. This mission is running great. Its everything I wanted. I was so happy to see how dedicated they are. My trainer is Mongolian, he is awesome and very patient with me. My language I guess is pretty good. The Mongolians understand me and I have so far received six referrals almost all by myself. The Lord has greatly blessed me with the gift of tongues. My companion is Athtangepeth (sounds like that). :)
I am in the Central area. I’ll have to get back to you with more details. Church was pretty full so like 50 attended or so. There are eight missionaries in our branch. Mongolia knows what missionary work is all about. These are amazing people! Elder Weaver and I bore our testimonies in sacrament meeting. They said we did a good job on our testimony, I know it was the Holy Ghost helping me.
The Mongolians are really kind and considerate people. In the Meker (a van we ride in) I dropped my water bottle and one picked it up for me. I was able to talk to them and said they were a nice couple. Then they were interested in the Church.
Yesterday my pen froze and wouldn’t write and the lady I was talking to warmed it up for me so I could write her information. I got out my space pen (that can write in space) and it worked but still didn’t work too well. Ha ha it’s cold — it’s so cool!
I really enjoyed so far what I’ve learned. My companion is really helping me with listening comprehension by speaking a lot of Mongolian to me. He is pretty good at English but is helping me learn Mongolian. I’ll start to teach him English more in the next few days so it won’t be all focused on me. The Mongolians always welcome us into their homes. We taught in a gar, it was really cool! They are preparing for their big holiday but other than that most have always been open to hearing the gospel. The Lord has a reason for the delay — I learned a lot in Georgia, I honestly can’t say why we were delayed.
I could go on and on and on. This is a dream come true for me. I am loving it! So much to learn so much to do! Its amazing. I am starting to understand my companion more and more each day. I’m still in training but I really want to be a good instrument for the Lord.
I love you Mom and Dad. I realize how much you’ve really done for me now that you’re not around! Thanks! I’ll write more but we are heading out. With pictures I’ll collect a lot then send a DVD home with them on soon, maybe next preparation day.
Love, Elder Willoughby
If anyone wishes to ask Daniel a question or to send him a message, write it in the comments and I will make sure he receives it.