Letters From The Field – Elder Tanner Bennett’s Mission Blog – Week 6

May 9, 2018

Elder Tanner Bennett was a guest on a previous episode of LDS MissionCast. He agreed to share his mission letters with the readers of our blog. So each week we will bring a letter from his mission. We will interview him at the conclusion of his mission as well. So stay tuned and stay connected to Tanner’s story each week on the LDS MissionCast Blog!


Hello all!

Did you like that click-bait-y title? I did. That’s why I used it. Now I’m not going to patter around this week, I’m gonna get right into the meat.
Monday- Nice, laundry, super great.
Tuesday- Now… this… this is tragic. We were meeting with our “investigator” (who is actually our teacher doing role play) and I did something not so great. To start, our teacher is a very quiet, shy, awkward man of few words. Essentially, I have never heard him laugh, or ever thought I would. So here we go.

We were ready to invite our ‘investigator’ to baptism today. We prepared an EXCEPTIONAL lesson with really great scriptures, we felt really good about the whole thing. So we are in the lesson, sharing up our spiritual thoughts, and he asks the question, “why do we need baptism?”
Okay, great, good, normal question. I thought I would start it by sharing a scripture in 1 Corinthians, 15:22 which talks about how we are all made alive in Christ. So I shared this scripture and he fires off some crazy Mandarin I have never heard, but I interpreted it as “Who is Adam?”
 Okay, no problem. We’ve talked about Adam before, and so I quickly told him, he was the first man, first prophet, etc. super quick so we can move on. He looks even more perplexed by my answer. I look at Elder Lang because I had forgotten how to say “Adam” in mandarin, he kindly reminds me, and I give another statement about it. He is even more perplexed, and I just say, it isn’t important, what is important are the covenants we make with God and we were back on track.
We conclude by bearing our testimonies, and the Spirit is so strong, I talk about God and Christ’s love for him, and how through Them we can be saved… and then I use some new Mandarin I haven’t quite mastered. I say “Ni hen tebia he shen ai ni” which I believed meant, “you are special to God and He loves you.” It does not. He begins to laugh. Like deep, throaty laugh… Remember how he doesn’t laugh? Well, apparently he does. We panic, ask to say a prayer, and we got out of there.
So here are the notes he shared with us afterwards.
1st, the scripture I THOUGHT was 1 Corinthians 15:22, was not. We don’t have Mandarin Bibles in the MTC, so we had to find it online and share it… However, we didn’t translate the scripture properly and wound up sharing 1 Samuel 1:22, which reads:
22 But Hannah went not up; for she said unto her husband, I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the Lord, and there abide for ever.”
So… that was wrong. Apparently the question he had asked was “who was Hannah?” and then I went on a tangent about Adam…. However, when I forgot how to say ‘Adam,’ and looked to Lang for help, he gave me “Eve’s” name instead. So I told our investigator that EVE was the first prophet, the first MAN on earth, and of course said nothing about the Hannah weaning her child. So yeah… that was awesome.
The other problem was when I said “ni hen tebia he shen ai ni” I literally said “You’re… unique… at least God loves you.” So yeah… Hence the laughter and my embarrassment.
Tuesday night was much better, we had our devotional with Sister Brigham, the President of the Relief Society. She is so nice, and gave an amazing talk. I sat on the stand because Lang gave the prayer, so I got to meet her and talk for a moment. She is so nice with an amazing spirit.
Wednesday-Saturday was pretty uneventful, and it sufficeth me to say, they were good days.
Sunday was really cool. I had the opportunity to perform in our Mission Conference (all missionaries) with a great singer named Elder Jeansalme. He is very nice, and has a great voice. We were also asked to play for the President’s Dinner on Tuesday, so I might get to meet an apostle or something, so that’s cool. I also got to audition on the organ and will be playing that for a devotional some time, and I also got called as district leader, so that is also neat.
Anyways, good week, long week, keep on going. Have faith, and remember with faith we can do all things! (Even if we mess up our scriptures)
Love y’all!
Elder Bennett
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