President's Pen 9-19-16 (Remember This...)

As missionaries in the Texas Houston South Mission, we know our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ, by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end. We do this through our constant efforts to find, teach, invite, retain, and activate God’s children; we love it, we live it, and we do it! We begin with the “End in Mind”, and see God’s children as he does. We are Disciples of Jesus Christ and the best missionaries in the world!

Dear Elders & Sisters

We love you!  Sister Hall and I look forward to being with you in zone meetings this week.  We will continue to emphasize our purpose, our planning, and our effort to find constantly, teach repentance, and baptize converts. #FC&TR&BC

A week ago I attended a semi-annual mission president seminar with the other 21 mission presidents from the southwest area.  This is a great event for a mission president and his wife as it’s much like a zone conference.  We are taught, encouraged, and then invited to go and apply what we’ve learned within our respective missions.  At each of these seminars I come away with impressions on what we need to focus on and what I need to do better as a mission president

Like you, I want to know that I’m doing what the Lord wants me to do and that I’m making progress.  We all want to become better disciples and I know there are many areas where I fall short.  I am regularly repenting and seeking greater faith to do the will of the Lord as we serve together.  The good news is I can and want to be better and I’m grateful the Lord loves me enough to chastise me and put me on the right course

With this in mind, during my morning studies this week I decided to review what the Lord would have me do.  I studied from the Mission President Handbook, PMG, Missionary Handbook, and the scriptures.  From this study I decided to create a “Remember This…” page to help me stay focused on the things the Lord would have me do to better bless and serve you, my family, and all we serve here in Houston.  I share this with you for two reasons; first, I want you to know what is important to me, and second, I want you to hold me accountable to my sacred calling.  As you read the list, ask yourself if I’m meeting these objectives.  Are these the things you see me do and teach?  Are there areas where you feel I can serve you better?  Consider this email a companionship inventory with the mission president; I love direct feedback and honesty; it only serves to help me get better. ;)  The proverb, “Thee lift me and I’ll lift thee, and we’ll ascend together” is applicable here

Remember This… President Hal

·         Your Purpose – Live, teach, train, and inspire your missionaries to help and invite others come unto Christ by teaching them the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end.

·         Your Focus – Teach, train, and model how Teach Repentance & Baptize Converts.

·         Your Roles – Faithful Husband and Father, Exemplar Missionary, Master Teacher & Trainer, Counselor & Judge, Mission Administrator

·         Be an example of Christlike love, and express that love frequently to your missionaries, to members, and to others.

·         Seek increased faith to become an instrument in the Lord’s hands to establish the Church.

·         Emphasize that the first principles and ordinances of the gospel are the foundation of conversion, retention, and activation.

·         Teach the purpose of missionary work clearly and frequently.

·         Teach your missionaries to work closely with ward leaders and members in finding, teaching, retention, and activation.

·         Teach obedience and point your missionaries toward the Lord; help them rely on His merits through the Atonement and make their love for the Lord their greatest motivation.

·         Spend time with missionaries, members, and local priesthood leaders.

·         Be bold and direct, and encourage your missionaries to be bold and direct.

·         See the missionaries for who they are and who they’ll become.  Help them become the husbands/wife, fathers/mothers, and church leaders they are foreordained to be.  Your success will come as their grandchildren serve missions.

·         Help the missionaries develop Christlike attributes that will stand as evidence of their missionary service.

·         Ensure the health, safety, and well-being of your missionaries.

·         Establish a mission culture where the missionaries understand their missionary vision and your expectations.

·         Set inspired goals, make plans, and hold yourself and the missionaries accountable.

·         Teach the missionaries the critical skills found in Preach My Gospel; focus on the fundamentals including: planning, finding, teaching, inviting, and follow up.

·         Establish & follow an inspired mission training plan; use the scriptures, Preach My Gospel, Missionary Handbook, District Videos, and other approved resources as your guide.

·         You are always teaching, both formally and informally, set the tone and example in all your interactions.

·         Choose only the best missionaries to serve as trainers; ensure new missionaries are trained using the First 12 Weeks.

·         Train and build missionary leadership that will bless, lift, and inspire the mission.

·         Strengthen the local units where you serve.  Establish positive and frequent communication with stake presidents, bishops, and local leaders.  Mutually grow the kingdom.

·         Ensure mission administration is effective and well-coordinated.  Delegate and effectively use office missionaries to lighten your administrative duties.

·         Follow inspired guidance by working closely with the area presidency, the missionary department, and other church resources that are provided to support you in your efforts.

·         Closely follow established policies and procedures found in Handbook 1 & 2 and the Mission President Handbook. 

·         Take personal time to study daily, plan, prioritize, and be guided by the Spirit.

·         Exercise, take care of yourself, enjoy the journey.

·         Never miss weekly date night or preparation day; have fun, find the good, recharge and renew.

·         You have been set apart and blessed by an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ; you have been called by God and you are qualified.

·         Love the Lord and serve Him the very best you can.

 

As I review this list, I assure you I am far from perfect, but I know who I am, I know who I’ve been called by, and I know that through my faith in the Savior I can and will get better.  Will you please help me as I do the same for you?  Our path to discipleship is never finished and I find it a healthy and positive process to take a moment to see where we stand, set goals, make plans, and become better.

My sincerest desire is to help you become the kind of disciples the Lord expects you to become. The blessing of my calling is to invite and help you!  You are my investigators in a sense; I need to understand your needs, consider what will help you increase your faith in the Savior and His Atonement, what will help you have lasting change through repentance, what will help you love and keep covenants, what will help you enjoy the blessings of the companionships of the Holy Ghost, and what will help you endure to the end.  This is the only WAY for all of us and I desire for all of us to be on this singular path.

Elders and Sisters, I want to teach repentance and baptize converts.  I want to see God’s children receive all the blessings that are available to them now! I feel a sense of urgency to talk to everyone, to find those the Lord has prepared, to preach the gospel by the Spirit, to invite them boldly, and to help them come unto Christ.  I want you to feel the same.  More importantly, I want to see the daily effort that is required to make this happen, mine included.  Please have a desire to be obedient, to find constantly, to teach repentance, and baptize converts.  The Lord loves you and will bless you for your commitment to do these things!  I love you and am so blessed to serve you.  Let’s lift each other and help all around us ascend!

Mission Update

The Houston Temple will re-open on Tuesday, September 27th.  We want all our recent converts to be at the temple and doing work for their ancestors.  Will you please prepare with them to be to the temple with us on Friday, October 21st.  What is a convert that was baptized earlier in the year hasn’t gone?  Reach out to them, ask them to prepare, help them bless their family members who are waiting for them to do their work. Font to Font… let’s baptize, but see them in temple white as well.  Love ya!

 

President Hall