Mark your calanders!

Mark your calendars so you can be at Sky Harbor Airport to welcome Jordan home. He will arrive:

Tuesday June 15th
, 2010
at 5:30 pm

on British Airways to Phoenix.

Everyone is invited to welcome him off the plane!

Monday, September 29, 2008

September 29th, 2008

Well for the last week of the transfer Elder Andersen and I put in a ton of work and ended with a bang. Everything fell into place this week with investigators showing up to meetings and we had some great finding which we are very thankful for.

On wednesday we had a street display, we had other people in our zone come to our city and help us we had four elders from Hradec and 2 sisters from Jicin who came. What a street display is, is we stand on the busy street in front of our church and 8 of us would sing hymns in czech while 3 people would go out and contact people. it was a pretty big success we got a lot of potentials out of it and it was also alot of fun, i had to contact by myself which was interesting with the language but i was actually able to communicate with the people which is cool. Us 4 liberec elders spent the morning before they got there at 11 cooking haluski which is a slovak food for lunch for everybody we had to peel and grate 40 potatoes which was quite the experience.

I forgot to tell you but last sunday i gave my first talk in the czech republic which was quite the experience. I was asked by a member that week to cover so i didnt have very much time to translate it which would have taken forever, but luckily one of our investigators is a professional translator so i wrote it all out in english and took it over to him and he translated it for me, i had to read straight from my paper the whole talk but i figure that is ok since there is no way i can give a 15 minute talk in czech without reading it.

This sunday was district conference in Prague and we took two of our investigators with us which was really good for them to see that there are more then just the 15 members in liberec, the Mission home where the prague branch meets was too small so they rented the Narodni Dum which is the National House, it was very nicely decorated and pretty famous i guess. After the conference we walked around prague and showed it to one of our investigators since he is from Moldava and had never seen Prague before.

So this morning we recieved information about transfers what they do is put all the information in the email and send it out to everybody at 10:30 AM and they call it the "Transfer Fax". My companion got a call earlier this morning from President though because of where he is going so i found out about it a little early. I am staying here in Liberec which I had figured would happen and my companion is going to Prague to be Zone leader there which he is very excited about.

My new companion is Elder Nowland he gets here on Wednesday right now he is serving all the way across the country in Oloumoc so i am excited to meet him ive heard he is a great missionary i got to talk to him on the phone a little bit this morning and he is very excited about coming out here.

Some people were asking about GeneraL Conference, it used to be everybody went to Prague and they would translate it live and send it over the satallite. But now they tape it and translate it and send everybody a translated tape to watch in their branch so i will probably get to watch it a week after you. Are you guys going up to Utah for conference? We have alot of new investigators we are working with who are showing alot of promise that im excited about, one man showed up to our first meeting after we gave him the book of mormon having read 300 pages with a bunch of questions, one of the questions was pretty funny i guess there was a slight mistake on translating from english to czech and in one of the scriptures where it is talking about the fruit of the loins as in posterity it said in czech fruit of the kidneys which he was very confused about but we cleared things up and he loves the book of mormon and says it has already made his life so much better.

We also have a woman in her late twentys we are meeting with and she brings her 5 year old daughter to the meeting who plays in the primary room while we talk. Her little daughter is so funny she is the chubbiest thing ever but when we asked her mom if she knew how to pray she called over her daughter who promptly recited the lords prayer i think? or some prayer her mom was so proud.

Well i am out of time but i hope everybody has a great week and ill tell you all about my new companion next week its crazy i wont be with Elder Andersen anymore ill miss

Monday, September 22, 2008

September 22nd, 2008

Hello everybody

It was a good week here in liberec we had some pretty good success with finding new people. One of our investigators i think i have talked about him before is from Serbia his name is Radosvav and he is here doing construction work. We had a great meeting with him on thursday its difficult to teach because both his english and czech arent very good but we get by it just takes awhile sometimes. He is the nicest guy he works like 10 hours everyday construction but the guy is always so happy i love meeting with him and talking with him and then he came to church on sunday which was sweet. He asked me where in america i was from and i said arizona and he hadnt heard of it so he asked me what the capitol of it was and i said phoenix he got all excited and said "like the phoenix suns?" it was funny hearing him talk about them in his broken english steve nash is his favorite player and then he started talking about charles barkley haha i had the biggest smile on my face and then he got all quite leaned into me and asked "you know who is vlade divac?" and of course i said yes good ole divac i guess he is from serbia and is their national hero basically so he was very happy that i knew who he was.

On thursday we had zone conference which was a good time going to the mission home in prague for it, I found out im staying here for next transfer so i will be in liberec for another two months which i am excited about. elder Andersen is heading out since he has been here for 6 months so im working hard at building relationships with the members to carry over for when he is gone. We went running this morning as a district which is something we are going to do everyday this week and i have a feeling my legs are going to be dead, haha it was pretty tough since i havent ran in 2 months but its good for me. Its a good thing i wasnt in the triatholon or i would have been far far behind but its good to hear that you all did great.

The language is coming along its alot like how uncle steve kittleson told me it was for him, i can understand pretty much everything my companion says to people, i can understand like 50% what they say back to him but then when they talk to me my brain freezes up and i catch like 25% of it, my speaking is improving the hardest part is you dont know what to say because you couldnt understand what they said to you, and it takes awhile for me to think of the right vocab and then hurry and try to declinate it so usually i just spit something that is mixed up but they can understand even though it is not correct czech.

In the Czech republic they celebrate birthdays and name days, since there are only so many approved names each name is associated with a day, yesterday was matouse which is matthew so everybody in the czech republic named matthew had like a second birthday. The one primary kid in our branch is named matouse so elder andersen and i bought him a little lego wrapped it up and gave it to him at church yesterday. made the little kids day, he was showin it to everybody so i have a new 6 year old best friend. I got the package from you mom thank you very much, tell the Utah Hatch's thanks for their emails it was good to hear how everything is going for them. I hope everybody has a great week.

Elder Hatch

Sunday, September 21, 2008

September 15th, 2008

Hello family and friends im writing a day late because of a zone activity we had yesterday. Our Zone leader organized a vylet for us all to go on to build some unity and to get to know each other a little bit better since we are so far away from each other because of the way things work out our zone is kind of stretched out we are 2 hours away from hradec kralova and 4 hours away from ceska budeouvice which are the two other cities with elders. We went to a city called Kutna Hora and visited a couple of old churches there one of them is this massive catholic cathedral which was pretty cool and another was a bone church that had the bones of 40,000 turkish soldiers in it, it was a fun trip it was good to get to know the other elders in our zone better since our mission is so small i will probably be serving with one of them eventually.

We had a great week this last week and were able to find some cool people to work with. right now we have a wide variety of people. we have a guy from serbia who is here doing construction work he had been meeting with the missionaries in serbia before they had been kicked out of the country then saw us on the street one day and came up and contacted us, he comes to our english class. It is kind of hard to teach him since he isnt great at english or czech but we use a combination and get by.

This last sunday a 20 year old guy showed up at church and we started talking to him he is from moldavia was walking down the street to the grocery store, saw our sign and decided to come up and go to church and now he wants to meet with us. At church this sunday we had an interesting combination we had 5 members 4 missionaries and 4 people investigating the church since some of the members were out of town. The members have alot of faith and dedication I cant imagine how hard it would be to grow up in the church here, some people have asked if it is like silverton. it is but younger and not as much experience in the church. also nobody comes here to speak from other cities like they do often in silverton. We have a pianist it is the branch presidents wife who is also the relief society president, I played one time when her son was fussing and she had to take care of him i have also played the prelude music a couple of times so it has been good for my piano skills practicing a little bit.
As we were contacting along through some panaloks which in america would basically be the projects that is how they are set up but that is how everybody lives so its not dangerous. people are usually pretty nice and friendly. we were walking along and some old women on a bench yelled at us what we had to offer so we went over and started talking to them and they started asking us all these questions about what we do, where we are from, why we are here as missionaries and so forth. they all said they were too old and didnt want to change but they were like your nice boys we will help you so they started yelling at people walking by if they believed in God it was pretty funny. Thats probably the thing we talk about most that God does exsist since most people here dont believe, most of the people who are interested in talking to us havent believed in God and are interested in finding out if there is a God so we spend alot of time teaching about God and how we can use prayer to find out he is there and loves us, so it is probably different then alot of other peoples experiences on their missions.

Here is a quote from President Monson that I read this week and thought I would share he said that "faced with the spiritual and emotional plagues of our day, to many of us tend to criticize, to complain, to blame and adopt the negatives of life. But we can lift ourselves, and others as well, when we refuse to remain in the realm of negative thought and cultivate within our hearts and attitude of gratitude".

We have zone conference on thursday that I am excited for it was really good last time. Fall is here for sure it has been freezing the last couple of days I am gonna have to go buy a couple of sweaters to go with my suits so I dont freeze. I hope you guys all have a great week and that everything goes well for you. keep up the good work in school and swim Ian and Alyssa.

Elder Hatch

Monday, September 8, 2008

Monday September 8th, 2008

Hello Family and Friends,

We have had another eventful week here in liberec with plenty of up's and downs. A bunch of you have been asking about our baptisimal date for this last saturday. unfortunately it did not go through. shortly after we extended it 3 weeks ago the woman has fallen off the face of the earth and we haven't had any contact in 2 1/2 weeks we have stopped by her apartment a number of times and her cell phone is always off so we will see if we can ever get back in contact with her. The baptism was going to take place at this beautiful little pond up in the mountains me and elder andersen went and checked it out a couple weeks ago and i took a bunch of pictures so you will see them the next time i send them home. The good news of the week is that we made a bunch of good connections with the local rotary club, one of our long time investigators is the former president and he invited us on an outing with them it was the liberec club then a club from drezden germany together. It was a big hike through a mountain range by us and we were able to talk to alot of really nice people one of the women we talked to actually went through the frieburg open house for the temple 25 years ago. A lot of them all they had heard about us was that we each have like 20 wives so it was good to clear that up. they loved talking to us they all wanted to know why we were so different from the other people our age and are friendly and kind, not rebellious like everybody else so that was cool to hear, if nothing else comes of it we gave a good impression to a bunch of people.

Something i just found out this week was that porsche was started here in liberec ? I dont know if that is true or not just what we heard. There is a ton of construction going on since the world championships for skiing will be here. they are upgrading a lot of transportation and building new stuff but they are getting pretty close to finishing it all. You asked about the stamps on the letter, elder andersen found a shop here in liberec where you can custom make them so i got one there, only a few people in the mission have them.

Here is another story from the week, last tuesday we walked in to our apartment building and i saw i had two packages one from grandma J and one from Kamille sitting on a little ledge since they were too big for our box, i had something in one of my hands so i went to grab the two packages with my other hand and kamilles package which was a big envelope slipped and fell, it turns out the ledge had about a two inch gap between it and the wall and the envelope fell down to the bottom which was like 4 feet so i had like an inch of dry wall between me and my package we started divising ways how we could get it out i thought all hope was lost but luckally my companion came to the rescue and came up with the idea to attach a clothes pin to a golf club the land lady gave us to help get it out and the day was saved and i got my package needless to say i will be much more carefull now.

It sounds like swim is going great for both Ian and Alyssa their times sound really good which is awesome. I saw one of my MTC teachers this last week which was cool he is from jablonec which is right next to our city and his grandmother had died so he flew over with his wife for the funeral and we got to talk to him for a little bit. The work is pretty tough here the investigators we have right now arent really going anywhere so we are going to be spending alot of time this next week trying to find new people. I hope everybody has a great week it is good to hear from everybody i love to recieve your email's and letters. I hope you all have a great week.

Elder Hatch

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Monday September 1st, 2008

Hey family it sounds like you guys have had another good week. All is well here we had a great week last week, we have a standards of excellence here for our mission on certain key indicators and we hit it for the first time on finding new investigators which was awesome, we found 3 new investigators this last week, the first is this cool kid named quan he is from vietnam and has been here for two years going to school it was cool because i was the one that contacted him he was walking along with his head looking straight down and i stopped him and started talking to him.

What me and my companion do is switch off every other on contacting and when i contact i tell them something brief about our message and ask them a question sometimes i can respond to their answer but usually they blast something out real quick and my companion is really good about stepping in and responding for me. The language is coming along slowly every day sometimes it feels like i havent progressed at all since i have got here but i know i have it is just a process i am getting better at listening. usually i can have a general idea what people are talking about and then i ask my companion for specifics.

Another one of our investigators is a women we found in the Jablonec area book, Jablonec is a city close to ours that used to have missionaries but got closed down and we have the area now. We called the woman up and said she would love to hear from us so yesterday after church we hopped on a tram for the 30 minute ride there and found her place luckily it is kind of hard to find addresses here. She is a very nice woman she was telling us how she had been in the hospital for 3 months and started pulling her shirt down to show us her surgery i got scared and thought she was going to flash us but luckily we were spared and she just showed us a big bump that was her pacemaker.

I am quite the tea drinker now haha although it is approved tea we can have fruit tea and herbal tea. The fruit tea is pretty good if you put in sugar but the herbal tea can be pretty hard to choke down some times it tastes like you are drinking hot grass.

We dont have a phone in our apartment each companionship has a cell phone which makes things soo easy it would be very hard to not have one here since we are out of the apartment so much and it helps us stay in contact with our investigators, i think most people here dont have house phones and just cell phones some of our investigators ask us to just text them since they have limited minutes.

In answer to your question grandma alot of people i have met work in factories or machine shops. I have recieved some rude responses which kind of shock you at first but you just brush them off keep on going and laugh about them later. And we see the other elders in our district pretty much everyday, for awhile our washing machine was broken so they would wash our clothes for us but ours is fixed now.

Today me and my companion went on a vylet to Kost Castle it was a sweet castle its a "real" castle from the middle ages not one of the chateuxs. School started back up today so we were basically the only ones there a member looked up on the interenet and gave us the train and bus times we were on our second bus there and were talking to the driver and told him where we were going usually its a 3 kilometer walk from the bus station but he took us in so we only had to walk 1 kilometer very nice guy, the transportation system is pretty amazing here.

For cooking my companion knows a bunch of meals and we cook together and he teaches me how to make them all so i can make them when we arent together anymore. We took honza one of our main investigators out to our branch presidents house for dinner it went great it was a really good experience for him. Our branch president speaks perfect english and he was telling us how for dessert we have two choices we can have a water based ice cream or regular ice cream. My companion and i just looked at each other trying to figure out what water based ice cream is then he brought it out and we were like ohhh we call that a popsicle it was pretty funny he and his wife are very nice and willing to do whatever it takes to help out with missionary work his wife reminds me alot of Jenni.

I cant believe i have already been here for a month it is going by quick. The gospel of Jesus Christ is amazing it truly does bless lives. I love you all and hope you have a great week

Elder Hatch