Wednesday, November 23, 2016


"I am so thankful for this amazing opportunity that I have to serve the Lord. This work is amazing, 
and even though we haven't seen very much success yet, there are miracles everyday to see." 


Hello everyone and Happy Thanksgiving!! :) This Thanksgiving I am especially thankful for this wonderful opportunity that Heavenly Father has given me to serve Him. I am super happy here. Also, the Jurupa Zone better watch out because on Thursday, I'mma ball out at the Turkey Bowl haha. 

This week has also had its ups and downs, but I continue to be exactly obedient and give it all I have. I know things will pick up soon. 

Tuesday was a pretty good day. We had our weekly District meeting, and Elder Zeng, my companion, gave an awesome training from Chapter 4 in Preach My Gospel about Recognizing the spirit. The Holy Ghost is a powerful tool in missionary work and in life. That night, we had our first lesson with a new family we picked up. Perry, his wife YoYo, and their 2 year old son, Robin. They are so awesome. We are praying and praying hat they will continue to progress! YoYo is pregnant, so we taught them about The Plan of Salvation. The lesson went pretty well and I know they felt the spirit! 

Wednesday we had trainer/trainee meetings. We drove to the mission office, and there President Mullen, Sister Mullen, and the AP's gave us various trainings. It was awesome. I learned a lot. After that we had another meeting with multiple zones in the mission about the new Christmas initiative, "Light the World." Should be pretty cool! Take a look at it. It is powerful. Wednesday night we had English class again. Brother Yang and Perry both came which was great!! We also met with Brother Miao. He is basically the Ward Mission Leader for the Chinese members but has been traveling in Taiwan the last several weeks. He is incredible. 

We continue to work on the UCR campus to find investigators to teach. We had dinner that night with the Li Family again. They are so awesome. We had some good baozi, and also I tried some good CHICKEN FEET AND CHICKEN STOMACH!! It wasn't too bad actually. A little different though. That night we had another lesson with YoYo and Perry. We taught about our life on earth, the Savior's Atonement, and invited them to be baptized. We extended the invitation, and they said that they want to learn more before they commit to be baptized. We will see what happens! 

I went on my first exchange this week with Elder Wood! He is one of our zone leaders, and is a really awesome missionary. We got up Friday morning, and went seeking with faith. We found two really cool guys, Tyrone and Jesus. Tyrone played football for the Minnesota Golden Gophers and on the Chicago Bears for awhile! He also said Jimmy Butler was his cousin!! Crazy. He was nice. We showed him a video about Jesus Christ and he really enjoyed it. Jesus is a chef in Orange County. We found him in his yard and he is also super cool. Hopefully these two people will progress for the Zone Leaders in their area! Elder Wood and I also did some service for a guy at his house that he is remodeling. We invited him to the Turkey Bowl on Thursday! 

Saturday we had our weekly Blitz in the morning. Elder Ly and I went out, and it was super fun. We contacted 16 different people, and picked up some referrals which was good! We also had dinner with Brother and Sister Li. Sister Li translates during Sacrament meeting, and they are both wonderful members. Brother Li served in Vancouver Canada and Sister Li went to Australia on their missions. Super cool examples to me.

Sunday was awesome. YoYo, her mother-in-law, and Robin, came to church! We sat by them and they seemed to really like it! Later Pan Xia called us and unfortunately she told us that she doesn't want to meet anymore. She said that she simply cannot overcome her "Scientific Mind." It is such a bummer. I know she has felt the spirit but is struggling to let faith take a bigger hold in her heart and mind. We also met with Brother Miao again last night, to discuss missionary work in the ward, and some things we can do to improve. Brother Miao is such a stud!! He has a great desire to spread the word just like I do.

I am so thankful for this amazing opportunity that I have to serve the Lord. This work is amazing and even though we haven't seen very much success yet, there are miracles everyday to see. Love you all enjoy Thanksgiving!! 

Elder Willes

Saturday, November 19, 2016


"Through the Atonement, the Savior came to know us. 
Through His Atonement, we can come to know the Savior." 

I love that. Through Christ's Atonement, ALL is possible. 
Hello everyone :) I can't believe another p-day is already here!! Crazy stuff. This week has been pretty good. Monday after p-day we had a dinner appointment with a Chinese family in our ward. They fed us some pretty good Chinese food and we shared a message with them. After we left my companions asked me, "How was the food?" I was like, "It was pretty good!" And then my comps asked, "Did you know what you were eating?" I said "Pork, right?" Hahaha wellllll turns out it was pork but it was some good old PIGS EAR and I felt a little queasy for the rest of the night.

Tuesday was pretty good! We had zone meetings all throughout the morning. We talked about goals, how we can improve and be better missionaries, and also received some training from our zone leaders. We did our studies and then ate dinner with another Chinese couple in our ward, The Chen's. They are awesome. Sister Chen leads the music every week in Sacrament meeting. After dinner, we went out and worked, trying hard to find more investigators. We tried to visit a couple of potential investigators too, but they didn't answer the door :( We also ran into a bunch of old Chinese ladies doing a traditional Chinese dance on the tennis courts. They were nice and we tried talking to all of them, but no one really had much interest in our message. 

So, the next day we tried a new approach to finding new investigators. We drove to the 99 Cent Ranch Market. This is basically a big Chinese Supermarket. We talked to a lot of Chinese people, and found a couple who had some interest which was awesome. We also had English class which was awesome as usual. We probably had our most successful English class yet! There were quite a bit of people there. 

We continue to work hard and contact on the UCR campus. I love working on the campus, but this week we didn't have very many people who were interested in our message. That night we drove to a referrals house, Zhou JieMei. We talked with her for about 30 minutes, and she is awesome!!!! The problem is, her family is going back to China this week and they aren't coming back until the end of December. We tried to schedule a time where we could come and meet with her before then but she said we can contact her when she gets back. Kind of a bummer :(

Friday we had a lesson with another referral, Sherry. She is great, but has a lot of questions and doesn't believe in God. She doesn't really have a ton of interest to continue to meet, but we will keep on trying!! Friday night, Elder Ly (from my Zone) and I went to teach the UCR English class. Sadly, no one showed up. So Elder Ly and I went out and contacted people. I did two solid Chinese contacts all by myself (since Elder Ly doesn't speak Chinese) and I was pretty proud of myself! 

We had our weekly Blitz Saturday morning and I was put with Elder Wood this time. We worked so hard but weren't as successful this time. That's okay. I love the Blitz's!!! That night we visited Zhu Di Xiong (the dad of the family who is showing interest). We talked for a while and answered some of his questions. He is super busy and doesn't want to commit to anything. We will continue to work with him and pray for him!

Sunday was pretty awesome as usual. We had a missionary farewell in our ward for Daniel Torres, he is going to Chile. We also had one of our investigators at church!! Yang Di Xiong is his name. He lives with his daughter and she doesn't really want him to come to church but they made an agreement and he came which is so awesome! We had a lesson with him on Wednesday after English class. Then after church we had a lesson with a potential investigator from the 99 Cent Ranch Market. Her name is Joan Wu. We taught her the Restoration, and it was a pretty good lesson! We invited her to pray to know the truthfulness of our message and so we are praying for her! 

This week has been better! I am continuing to learn every single day and I am grateful I have this opportunity to work as hard as I can for the people here. One cool thing I learned this week, "Through the Atonement, the Savior came to know us. Through His Atonement, we can come to know the Savior." I love that. Through Christ's Atonement, ALL is possible. Love you all have a great week!

Elder Willes

Sunday, November 13, 2016


Hello everyone!! This week has had many highs and lows. I know this is missionary life and I will stay focused on the positive and enjoy every moment I am here! 

Let me tell you about my companions. The three of us are the only Mandarin speakers in our mission. In fact, we cover the Riverside Mission, Redlands Mission and Rancho Cucamonga Mission although they that mission might be getting some Chinese Elders. It is lots of driving and I am always the driver. Elder Zeng and Elder Yang cannot drive. They are both from mainland China. Elder Zeng's English is really good. Elder Yang is improving and works really hard on English! He can't speak very well but he can read really well for some reason. My companions are so awesome. Elder Zeng joined the Church 6 years ago and he and his mom are members. Elder Yang joined the church 5 years ago and there are 7 other extended family members of his that are also members of the Church. 

So last p-day (Monday) was Halloween. We were not allowed to go proselyte. I wanted to go out so bad to find investigators. There were so many people out! Instead, we had a zone activity. 

Tuesday was the first day of November... that is crazy. We had our weekly zone meetings in the morning and some more studies after lunch. We went finding at a park that night and talked with this one guy from China for a really long time! He had us sit down with him and basically teach him a lesson. I was really excited and then we asked him if he wanted to hear more and he said that he didn't have any interest. That was kind of a bummer. We also visited the Li Family and had a lesson about encouraging them to do member missionary work. They are so awesome.

We continue to work really hard to try and find more investigators, but haven't yet seen much success. We met three guys playing basketball at the park named Frankie, Joseph, and Johnny. They weren't Chinese but we talked with them for a while about the Gospel which was cool. We got their contact information and referred them to different missionaries so that was pretty cool! We had English class that night. English class is the best. I love it so much!! 

Thursday we spent most of the morning at UCR. On the way to UCR, Shu Jie Mei called us. She said that she wants to learn about Jesus Christ and our Gospel, but her family doesn't want her to meet with us, so she cancelled our lesson. It was super sad. I was so excited about her! 

Friday we went to UCR again for most of the day. Finding at UCR is really fun. This past week we found a really cool new investigator, Pan Xia. She is a Material Science major and is super smart!! We had a lesson with her yesterday which I will explain more about later!! We ate dinner that night with Sunny, and older member from Taiwan. She is so awesome. It is kind of sad... She has a 17 year old dog that is blind and deaf and runs in the wall sometimes. But our visit was great and we invited her to try and read from the Book of Mormon everyday and she agreed! We had 2 new people at English Class on Friday night! Both of them are students at UCR, and have interest in learning about the Church. Also the Taiwanese couple came too, and they are awesome.

Saturday we had our weekly blitz. This week I was with Elder Jackson, one of our zone leaders. He is a really great missionary. We worked really hard and made I think we made about 17 contacts in 90 minutes and got quite a bit of referrals which was cool! We had the Stake Conference Adult Session that night which was awesome. Elder Zwick from the Seventy was there and he is so so cool. 

Sunday morning we had Stake Conference. It was so cool. The was the best Stake Conference that I have ever been to. President and Sister Mullen spoke, the Redlands Temple President and his wife, and Elder and Sister Zwick. So awesome. I was really grateful that I could go and learn and feel the spirit. We also had a lesson that afternoon with Pan Xia. She is great, but kind of has some doubts and believes in "Science." We will continue to try and help her though! We also had a lesson with Evelyn. It was a hard one for me. We talked with her for a while about the Book of Mormon, faith, and prayer. At the end of the lesson, we invited her to continue to pray and read, everyday. She said that she doesn't need to, and already feels like she has a good life and then she told us that she doesn't want the Gospel right now. I know that someday she will accept the Gospel. 

This week has had many highs and lows but I am so happy here and grateful for the opportunity to serve my Savior, Jesus Christ, and represent Him. I love you all have a great week!! 

Elder Willes  


"A small miracle happened for me. We were tracting at another local park in the area, trying to find more investigators. I was feeling really discouraged. No one wanted to listen to us, and I was feeling really down. Right as we were about to give up, our last two contacts were a success. I was so grateful for Heavenly Father's blessings when I was feeling really down. Heavenly Father is really mindful of all of his missionaries!"
Elder Willes and Elder Yang

We try to do any grocery shopping at the local Asian market in hopes of finding people to teach

Hello everyone. I had another great week here in the CRM. I have really felt Heavenly Father's hand this week in my mission. I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve here and help the people Come unto Christ. Tuesday, I had my field-orientation at the mission office with the 12 ish missionaries that came in a week after me. We had a bunch of trainings which basically took that whole day. I learned a lot so that was good! Towards the end of the training, we had a testimony meeting and everyone was assigned a trainer and an area. I already knew who my trainer was and area so no surprise for me there :) Elder Zeng and Elder Yang are awesome. 

We had district and zone meetings this week. We also had our first official lesson with Tang Cheng. He has a few questions and concerns about the doctrine, but has shown some interest and wants to learn more about Christ. We also had the annual Ward Trunk or Treat this week. It was awesome. We had a great turnout! There were Chinese all over... I loved it.

Thursday we spent most of the day at UCR, finding. That is super fun. College students from China are awesome. I love talking to them and trying to help them Come unto Christ. We had a few good contacts and got some contact information too. That night, a small miracle happened for me. We were tracting at another local park in the area, trying to find more investigators. I was feeling really discouraged. No one wanted to listen to us, and I was feeling really down. Right as we were about to give up, our last two contacts were a success. We contacted Shu Jie Mei and her son, Allen. Shu Jie Mei has a lot of interest and I was so grateful for Heavenly Father blessing me when I was feeling really down. It was so awesome. Heavenly Father is really mindful of all of his missionaries!

Friday was super busy. Studies in the morning, and then we met with a PI, Amit, at UCR. He is a student and super smart. We are hoping and praying he continues to show interest in our message! We then spent most of the day at UCR and also had another English Class. The same awesome couple for Taiwan came. They are both in their 70's and 80's and are hilarious. We are trying to help them learn English, and share with them our message. They don't seem to be too interested but we will continue to try!! 

Saturday morning we had our weekly blitz. This week I was with Elder Steed (another Elder in our zone). In 90 minutes, we made 11 contacts walking around and got a referral too! That was awesome. We also had lunch with our Stake President, President Jergensen. He is super cool. We had a dinner scheduled with a family in a different ward, but they just invited us to come to their Trunk or Treat for dinner so we went to two this week haha. After that we went and visited the Zhu family. They are super busy, but are showing more interest. Please pray for them! We are going to try and put them on for baptism this next week.

Sunday was awesome. I was asked me to give the opening prayer in Sacrament meeting. I also bore my testimony to the English ward. :) Sunday night we drove to Riverside to meet with the Grahams. The Grahams have a 18 year old girl named Evelyn living with them, from mainland China. We ate with them, and shared a message with Evelyn. We taught her the third lesson, about the Gospel of Christ. It was awesome. We invited her to read the Book of Mormon every day, and she said she couldn't do it. I felt prompted to invite her to just try it for a couple of days, and see how she feels. I let her borrow my Book of Mormon and promised her that she would feel happier. Please pray for her as well! 

This week has been awesome. I am learning more and more each day. I am so excited to keep serving the people here and am praying for our investigators so that we can help them. Love you all have a great week! 

Elder Willes  

Our kitchen