“The time of Hastening the Lord’s work is now.” – Elder Russell M. Nelson

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

September 29, 2015 - Christ will never give up on us!

To my Family and Friends,

Week number Four! (To the Hansen side of the fam) Don't watch the Enduring Love Mormon message! But if you want to, keep the Kleenex close by.

To start, this week I was able to study the entire book of 3 Nephi, which was powerful. It is basically all the words of Christ and there are a lot of powerful scriptures.

Also today I got a haircut and that's all I'm going to say about that.... (He said he felt like he was cheating on me. I've cut his hair since he was a baby.)

Anyway on to this week. I was sadden to hear that Elder Scott passed away but I know that he is happier now that he is no longer ailed by his aging body and he is reunited with his sweet wife after 20 years of devotion. Yesterday the entire MTC had the opportunity to watch his funeral. It was amazing and Elder Scott truly lived a life dedicated to the Lord and his gospel.

I am super pumped for General Conference this weekend and these are my predictions for the new apostles, Kim Clark, Gèrald Caussè, and Ulisses Soares and my long shot is Edward Dube.

In other news, I was released as District leader this week and about 20 seconds later was called to be the Zone leader. Now before you start sending me kind thoughts of praise, I desire to make something clear. Position in the church DOES NOT MATTER. It is not a way to measure worthiness or spirituality, it is an assignment to serve those around us and to help us grow. My assignment is Zone Leader, but my calling is still a Missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-Day Saints. This assignment did not come because I am better than the other Elders in my Zone, I am simply called to help serve. But it is weird having to carry around a phone again.

So this week our 2 favorite districts left the MTC which was very sad... but where the old left the new replace. Parker Hansen and Tyler Ursenbach came into the MTC on Wednesday and they are learning their languages on the same floor as me, so that is pretty cool. Also Tyler is one of the District leaders in my Zone!

We had TRC (?) again this week and it went a lot better than last time. We taught more like home teaching than when we teach investigators. Speaking of, our investigators are progressing fairly well. They are both about ready for baptism but Manfred relapsed with alcohol on Wednesday which was a set back but has continued to progress since then and yesterday we had a 45 minute impromptu discussion on the power of the Atonement. We shared with him the love that the Savior has for each of us and that he will help us in our trials if we are humble and trust in him (Alma 38:5), and we shared Mosiah 26:30:

 30 "Yea, and as often as my people repent will I forgive them their trespasses against me."

I testify to you that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is the single most important event in the history of the World. I know that Christ paid the price for all of our sins that we may become subject unto him and humble ourselves so that we can be forgiven. The only way that the Atonement will stop working for us is when we give up. Christ will never give up on us.

Also this week we got in trouble because of spoons. The zone prank has been to slip people spoons from the cafeteria with out them noticing. This was started by none other than Panini Thangaraj! Anyway it kinda got out of hand so our Branch President told us, "Not to be stupid".
The whole situation was funny. :)

I can't tell you everything but, this week I got to watch a talk by Elder Bednar about becoming a missionary, not just going on a mission. In order to become a missionary there must be a change of heart, a change of attitude! 

A mission is different than I thought it would be and it is definitely harder. By myself I don't think I could do it, but that is the beautiful thing about the Atonement, I don't have to do it alone. I love the words of Ammon, "Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever." (Alma 26:12)

We can do all things in the Strength of the Lord! We don't have to go through any trial or heartache or pain on earth by ourselves because of the Atonement of Christ!

I am known as the scriptorian in the district and whenever anyone needs a scripture in a lesson they look to me. :) I love to read and ponder the scriptures because they can answer any question we have! Two quick scriptures:

Wherefore, I said unto you, feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do. (2 Nephi 32:3)

8 And it supposeth me that they have come up hither to hear the pleasing word of God, yea, the word which healeth the wounded soul(Jacob 2:8)

Turn to the scriptures and you will know what to do and shall be comforted! So, why not do it?

Okay my last thought... I often wondered why I, of all people, was chosen to be born into the true church of God. Why would I be so privileged to be born into circumstances where I have the light of the gospel given to me? Well, I now know that it is not a coincidence.

In Doctrine and Covenants section 46:13 it states,  To some it is given by the Holy Ghost to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that he was crucified for the sins of the world.

From a very early age I have had a testimony of the Savior of the world and know that He lives. I testify and bear witness that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that through him all Mankind may be saved if we turn unto him with pure intent in humility. This testimony is why I was born into the situation I was. I have a strong testimony of the truthfulness of this gospel and because I have been given much I too must give. I am becoming a missionary and like the sons of Mosiah cannot be restrained to share the gospel with others. This is why I have come here to this place at this time! To share my testimony of Jesus Christ and the healing power of his Atonement!
I hope that I will be able to fulfill my calling and bring others unto Christ.

-- M' vle nou gen bon sante ak ke lavi nou yo kontan 
(I want us to have good health and that our lives are happy)

Elder Hansen
Florida, Fort Lauderdale Mission
Haitian-ing the Work

Christ will never give up on us!

Most of the Zone (was 100 members, now about 50 after two of the districts left)
Primarily French speaking, with the Four Haitian Elders and a few Tahitian Elders

 "It's weird to carry around a phone again"

The two districts that are leaving for the field

Elder Harrah, the Director (photo bomb by super tall Elder Jackson!) 

With Elder Baldobinos - leader of Big Arm Friday, he's an Olympic weight lifter from Mexico

Elders Murdock, Sovereign, Hansen, Petry (Peachtree), Boyd and Terry
I love Elder Petry's tag clipped to his tie because his shirt doesn't have a pocket!

Elder Jackson with Elder Heward on his back and his companion, Elder Nelson

With Elders Seelos and Thangaraj (the spoon thief)

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

September 22, 2015 - MTC Hump Day!

Sa K ap fèt? (What is going on?) 

This week has been pretty crazy... The days here are long and the weeks fly by! It feels like P-day was just yesterday! Anywho, to all those who were unaware, last Wednesday was Paula Day (Grandma Hansen's birthday) and I definitely celebrated with some cinnamon bears and Earth, Wind and Fire, also on that note for the people that aren't as observant as someone who looks at a planner every half hour or so, yesterday was the 21st night of September.  PC, pretty cool.

Today we got to go to the temple like we do every P-day and we get to eat real food at the Temple Cafeteria! it's Amazing!  So last Wednesday we had TRC (I'm not sure exactly what it means) but we got to teach some native Haitians and Holy Cannoli! They taught me the wrong language! I'm only jokin, their accents are super cool but we have a lot to learn still. A little bit about Haitians, they eat a boat load of beans... (Matthew hates beans) they blend them up with oil and pour them over rice. They also have deep fried plantains and papaya juice (but not together) its apparently delicious. They are mainly Christian and their independence day is January 1st and it's more of a... screw-the-French day (Pardon my french). Anyway, their big holiday is their flag day on May 16th and that's their big party day!

On Thursday we had an English fast (?) which lasted about 4 hours and then we got too hungry for communication, but it was still good. Elder Petry and I are not only teaching lessons without notes we are teaching without a set plan at all, we just go in with questions and teach to our investigators needs and it's pretty awesome. We are progressing in the language phenomenally well.

Oh I forgot to tell you, I was 100% better on... like Thursday or something like that, but yeah, the whole district is totally healthy. If you want to know what my district is like, they are 18 and 19 year-olds... and they are expected to study all day. I'll leave the rest to your imagination.  This week was bad for losing stuff, someone took my spray bottle and my body wash out of the bathroom so that was pretty nice of them.

Last Tuesday Bishop Gerald Caussè spoke to us and he was amazing! He taught about being a bold missionary and not being afraid to teach the gospel.  On Friday we had "BIG ARM FRIDAY" with Elder Baldobinos and I could barely raise my arms the next day, but it was good, we had a lot of fun.
Our investigator Bellott committed to a baptismal date this week which we were pumped for and we are working with him to be ready for October 2nd. Our other investigator Manfred is progressing great but threw a word of wisdom problem curveball at us and Elder Petry and I had to wing a lesson but it turned out great and we are working with him to be ready by October 2nd as well. 
Elder Maurino and Elder Rackham are struggling because they told Manfred that his baptism in the Catholic church was meaningless and that's....... bad. So Frè (Brother) Chandler dedicated a whole lesson to the Importance of the Priesthood and how to explain that to investigators. The Power of God and the power and authority of the priesthood is the ability to forgive sin. We can only be forgiven of sin through PRIESTHOOD ordinances! We receive a remission of our sins after baptism BY THE PRIESTHOOD, and we renew those covenants by partaking of the sacrament which is administered BY THE PRIESTHOOD. Priesthood is power given from God for us to forgive those who are repentant and humble. Basically, for the 5.8 or so million people in my mission that aren't members of the church the only way for them to have access to the power of the Atonement is through the 150 or so missionaries in Ft. Lauderdale. That's quite the responsibility!

On Sunday Elder Petry and I taught in priesthood and we taught concerning the sacrament and totally used my talk from when I spoke with Brother Brasher, it was PD, pretty dope.  Then that night for devotional, we had Lloyd Newel come and we had MTC and the Spoken Word. It was pretty dang sweet, I was in a choir of over 1000 and there are only 2400 missionaries here right now. We sang hymns and he spoke, just like on Music and the Spoken Word with the MTC (Mormon Tabernacle Choir). We sang "Redeemer of Israel" and "How Firm a Foundation" and he taught about overcoming fear through power love and a sound mind. It was an AWESOME devotional. I figured Grandma and Grandpa would be pretty jealous ;)  After our devotional, the second counselor in our branch presidency, Brother Markham came up to our Residence and taught us about Jacob 5 and the allegory of the Olive Tree.  Since he owns a vineyard in Provo, he brought his grape juice and it was sooooo delicious!

Yesterday I finished marking up the Book of Mormon again so I guess today I get to restart.  Here are 2 scriptures I like:

2 Nephi 26:24

24 He (Christ) doeth not anything save it be for the benefit of the world; for he loveth the world, even that he layeth down his own life that he may draw all men unto him.  Wherefore, he commandeth none that they shall not partake of his salvation.

Every commandment, every trial, every blessing, everything that Christ has ever done has been for the benefit of man. He doesn't give commandment for fun, he gives us commandments to bring us peace and joy and to keep us safe.

And please put this on my Missionary Plaque:

2 Nephi 2:6-8
6 Wherefore, redemption cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth.

 7 Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered.

 8 Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy,and grace of the Holy Messiah, who layeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise.

M' konnen ke Jezikri se sovè de mond la, ak sèl atrave li, nou kapab retounen viv avek Papa nou ki nan syel la anko. Nou konnen levanjil vre, donk se tre enpotan ke nou di lot moun konsèrnan jan yo ap kapab gen lavi lentenel.

I know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world and only through him we can return to live with our Father in heaven. We know the true gospel so it is very important that we tell others how they can gain have Eternal life.

I hope you are all doing well, and until next week.

-- N'ap wè de an (We saw two of?)
Elder Hansen
Florida, Fort Lauderdale Mission

Haitian-ing the Work (Love this!)

Haitian-ing the Work!  The inspiration for the name of the blog!  He signed his letter with this today and I just love it!  I think Matthew drew this.  It's the sign outside their classroom.

P-Day is Temple day!

Elders Hansen, Petry, Jackson (yes he's 7' 2"), Nelson, Rackham, & Maurino

"When will my reflection show who I am inside?" - Mulan

The District at the Provo Temple

With Elder Huang

Matthew got to see his best buddy Dallin, Elder Chugg, before he left for Fiji!
Facebook message from Dallin's mom after Matthew sent her this photo:
Elder Hansen just sent me a picture of him and Elder Chugg before Elder Chugg left for the airport to head to Fiji. Rakelle Hansen you and Steve have a fantastic son and I am so grateful that not only are our boys great friends but they were able to see each other in the MTC!

Matthew finished his scripture marking project today!
He started after the Isaiah chapters so he had to go back and finish those. :)

Enjoying some grape juice from Brother Markham, Second Counselor in the Branch Presidency

Parker colored this Pikachu and sent it to Matthew.  It's now hanging on the board in their classroom.  Parker couldn't be more proud! He emailed Matthew today to remind him to take Pikachu with him went he leaves for Florida! 

September 15, 2015 - I'm in Cougarville... and I'm sick :(

Alo tout moun, (Hello Everyone)

So for starters, I'm in the middle of Cougarville... Come on Boise State!  I was the only Bronco fan in branch council meeting.....  Any way..... so this week was less fun than the first week, okay maybe not less fun but just different.  I woke up sick on Friday and I'm still getting over it. Not fun at all....

Our lessons this week just weren't going well at all until yesterday when they taught us how to actually teach! Shocking I know. We now have 2 teachers Fre (Brother) Chandler and Fre Anderson they were companions in Ft. Lauderdale on their missions.  Also this week, Elder Murdock and Elder Sovereign, Tahiti elders in our zone, broke into our rez (residence) and stole all of Elder Rackham's ties.  So we devised an elaborate scheme to break into their rez using an envelope, floss, a vacuum cleaner and a hanger. It was pretty legit. We stole back Dax's ties and then took their ties and hung Elder Sovereign's Toothless stuffed animal his girlfriend gave him with the floss.  It was pretty funny. It all ended there though which was good and we are all friends.

We are all still progressing well in the language and teaching skills. There isn't really a whole lot more to tell you because everyday is the same.

If you have any questions let me know because then that gives me something to tell you :)
It's so good to hear from y'all (BTW I'm getting pretty swole from all the push ups I have to do)
Anyway, one last note my district thinks that I look like George W. Bush, and they think it's awesome when I quote movies.  Line of the week is, "She likes me for my body" - Tow Mater, Cars  
And on that bombshell it's time to end.

-- Orevwa ak N' a We tout zanmi'm  (Goodbye and see you all my friends)
Elder Hansen

Florida, Fort Lauderdale Mission

My district thinks I look like George Bush?  Strategery, heh-heh!

The Map picture - Fort Lauderdale, here we come!

Elders Petry & Rackham are going there too. 

Elder Hansen in the rain.

Umm, breaking the rules?

September 8, 2015 - The MTC is AMAZING!

Sa k Pase?!? (What's Happening?)

Bonjou fanmi m' e zanmi m' yo! (Hello my family and my Friends!)

The MTC is AMAZING! I am the district leader over all the Haitian Creole speaking missionaries in the whole MTC (all 4 of them)! We are in the French Zone and we have Tahitian speaking missionaries too. In our zone we have one Elder, Elder Bentley and two sisters from England, their accents are awesome! We also have Elder Batezzato from Italy who is a super cool guy, he also has a cool accent, Elder Jackson who is 7'2" and there is an Elder Bytheway in my Zone, so cool. Anyway, my comps name is Elder Petry (like the dish) and we get along great. He's from Denver, CO and loves to bike. The other 2 Elders in our district are Elder Maurino, from Rexberg, and Elder Rackham from Kaysville UT. We all get along so well it's amazing, sometimes we get along a little too well. We joke around a little which is good because it is hard to focus on studying for 12 hours a day. 

The gift of tongues is for real! Our whole district bore our testimonies on Sunday completely in Creole!  Yesterday was our 3rd lesson with our investigator and we taught without any notes but he threw us a curve ball and we had to change our lesson and had to wing the entire thing! But we did great, we speak fantastically well for only being in the MTC for 5 days! Also our district rule is every time we say "dude" or "you guys" we have to do 5 push ups and I have done so many, my arms are so sore! Our district jokes around all the time about my "bee wrangling" days and they try to wrangle bees at the temple. It's pretty funny.

Oh, I forgot, the food here is less than sub par. I was correct in my worries about eating cafeteria food for 6 weeks, but all is well. We ball it up at gym every night and my ability to make free-throws has come in handy when choosing teams. I've seen sooo many people I know here it is ridiculous, I've seen Elder Andrew, Wilson, Chugg, Coon, Capell, and more. It's crazy to see so many familiar faces. So on sunday I had branch council with the branch presidency, President Dowling is awesome and so so so funny! At the end of the meeting he gave us an update on BYU football, which was cool but it wasn't a Bronco update. BTW Good they won, sounds like they have a few things to work on. My District/Zone is obsessed with our sister Trainer leaders, it's pretty funny but they are awesome and so are our Zone Leaders Elder Di Reda and Seelos. Our whole zone and district get along great. On Sunday we had a mission conference where the whole mission got together and the mission presidency spoke it was amazing! Later we had a devotional by the Provo temple president and his wife which was less amazing... I fell asleep haha.... whoops! My zone laughed at me because my comp was sticking a pen up my nose while I was sleeping. But then I was wide awake for the movie that night where we watched the Character of Christ by Elder Bednar where he taught that to be like Christ we must turn out by show love and compassion for others when the natural man would turn in and be selfish. It was an awesome talk. Anywho, we are killing it in the language, it's pretty sweet. We went to the temple this morning and it was very cool, it was good to get outside the MTC. 
I miss you all and I'll send some pictures later today 

-- M' renmen tout nou - (I love you all)
Elder Hansen
Florida, Fort Lauderdale Mission

Home Sweet Home - he calls it the "Mom" shrine

His Companion, Elder Petry (like the dish) from Denver, CO.

Where all of the studying happens

This cracked me up!  It really says this on the back of their dictionaries!

I restricted the bee to bee remain?
Google translate isn't helping much here 

P-Day with the District - Hansen, Rackham, Petry, & Maurino

Studying hard in class ;)

With the Zone Leaders at the temple

With the Sister Trainers at the temple
He doesn't know what to do with his hands!

September 4, 2015 - I'm Safe!

Alo fanmi mwen e zanmi mwen!  (Hello my family and my friends!)

Hey Guys! 

So its been a crazy couple days here at the MTC!  We have been studying like crazy!  I just taught my first lesson in Haitian Creole and it went alright.  Last night I was assigned to be the district leader so thats pretty crazy.  I'm only supposed to email a little bit I'll tell you more on Tuesday which is P-day

-- Mwen renmen ou - (I love you)
Elder Hansen
Florida, Fort Lauderdale Mission

It's official! Not sure why he has one tag in Haitian and one in English


I't so great to hear from him and that he is doing so well already!
Wow, they don't waste any time in the MTC!  He's been there 2 days and is already teaching in Haitian!  That's pretty amazing!

September 2, 2015 - Today Our Lives Changed Forever

Today our lives changed forever.  We dropped off our oldest son Matthew at the Missionary Training Center.  We started the journey the day before when we drove down to Utah.  We stopped at Utah State University to get some shirts for him to take on his mission and to get some Aggie ice cream! Then we stopped for dinner in Bountiful and went to my favorite restaurant there called Robintino's.  It was delicious!  The next morning, MTC day, we started the day at IHOP for breakfast.  Matthew was dressed as a missionary of course and some of the people in the restaurant came to wish him well.  The manager sent out a "lucky" $2 bill for him!  Pretty awesome. :)  Then we were on our way to Provo.  We stopped by the grounds of the new City Center (Tabernacle) Temple to take a few pictures.  It's a very unique temple, very pretty.  The workers were working on the wood trim and we could see inside some of the doors, it's going to be beautiful inside as well.  We also went to the Provo temple to take some photos before we went to lunch at Los Hermanos.  We weren't even hungry but it was in the plan to go there. ;)  Matthew loved the chips and salsa of course! Our server was super excited for Matthew.  He had served his mission in Russia, he even served in Saratov!  So we told him about knowing Andy and that he is in our ward.  He thought that was pretty cool.  They gave him his meal for free!  It's so great to experience such love and support even from the local businesses.  The time is drawing nigh... We headed back over to the Provo Temple grounds to take a few more pictures and to say our goodbyes. :(  We saw some friends of ours, the Clarks, who were also bringing their son to the MTC that same day too.  We gave Matthew big hugs and told him how much we love him, there on the temple grounds, then it was time to drop him off.  The Elders there at the MTC were ready and waiting to take his luggage, and snap a few pictures before whisking him away.  We gave Matthew one last hug and then he was off!  He was so ready for this moment to finally get started on his mission.  He didn't even look back!  We are so excited for him!  It's a very bittersweet time emotionally, we're not sure how to feel.  We're so excited for him to go on this amazing journey, but sad that our family will never be the same.  He will never be at home with us like he has been for 18 years.  He'll only be back to visit, and that is a hardest part about this whole experience.  He has left the nest and flown away on his own. :'(  God be with you 'til we meet again!

All packed and ready to go!

The new City Center Temple

In front of the Provo Temple

Bee wrangling at the Provo Temple!

I love this boy!

Ahh, so tender

The MTC - This is it! Our last photo together :(

He's on his way! He didn't even look back!