Mt. Isa

Mt. Isa

Monday, April 30, 2012

April 30, 2012

Hey Family, The week has been good. We've tried this week to focus more on finding and so any spare time we used to go tracting or finding one way or another. We didn't do heaps but I think just the focus on it helped it to be more successful. We found a family in the course of things and, although they seem to be active in their own faith, a return appointment is a return appointment so we'll do our best all the same. It rained for a good part of the end of the week which made life a little more interesting but somehow we managed to make it through and do alright. One of our investigators text-ed us and even ask where and when church was which is always a good sign. On Sunday we went to follow up with potential investigators that we've been trying to see for the last couple of months. We caught them yesterday at a good time and we're able to have a good lesson with them and they are willing to have us back later next week sometime. This was the lady that gave us each a piece of cake when we tracted in to her months ago. Crazy stuff, I’d say. We've been blessed in the last week. I don’t know if it will go anywhere but we can only hope for the best, right? We got to do a good deal of service in the last week which really helps the week go better. You know how I love to do service. We dug ditches to line a yard with railroad ties. At another place, we moved small but heavy boulders to make a retaining wall around a bloke’s swimming pool. Then we planted a couple of trees for a disabled lady which was good as well. It’s been a fun week. I have to say. To answer your question (about driving), I do all the driving in this area. Only one of us can be the designated drive on the insurance but my Comp drives some so it just depends on the situation. The weather has been nice but it’s getting quite cool in the mornings and then warming up as the day goes along. Last week with the rain and the cold it was miserable. We'll adjust though. I'm still in the winter acclimatization so for the next couple of week we'll just be getting used to it. Today we're going on a hike down in the hills in the southern part of our area along the Laidley River. I'll try to take some pictures. We've been down there once before with a member when we went down there to find some firewood to chop, which was fun. It should be good. It a bright semi-cool day so I'm sure it will be fun just to get out of the flat and away from town. We have a pretty normal week planned with nothing to out of the ordinary. The week after next is our Temple trip on Wednesday the 9th so we won’t have P-day until later in the week, just so you know and don’t get too worried. It was cool to hear Spencer (Elder Key) gets home in only a couple of weeks and that Alex (twin brother Elder Key) isn't far behind. Bruce (Elder Otteson – all three Elders did Scouts with Kiefer…) should only have about 3 months left as well right? (4 months). I'm sure they are great Missionaries in the areas they serve. Hope school is going well Colin. Work hard and punch through the spring term. I'm sure you’re getting burn out if you aren't already. I know by that time I was getting sick of school and needing a little break. You're almost there, hang on. Love you heaps. I will be praying for y'all. Have a good week. Elder Hatch

Sunday, April 22, 2012

April 23, 2012

A photo of the countryside near the Somerset Ward building in Plainland.

Hey Family,

The week has been interesting. We're short on km's since we had to drive into Brassall (Brassall is a suburb of Ipswich) twice for General Conference weekend so that put us over the pace for km's. This week we've had to try to use the car as little as possible so as to catch up. We don’t want to go over at the end of the month. The good thing is that we now have a good 700 km's to use until the end of the month. We should be set. I hate having that limitation to doing Missionary work. We had to get our car serviced this last week. In the last 5 months I've put so many km's on that car it is crazy, we just drive heaps. I think in all I've put 15,000 km's on the car. It is at almost 85,000 km's now so it will most likely be traded in sooner or later. The Corolla is running like a champ all the same though, even after many crazy Missionaries thrashing it and it being in the country.

Monday we got picked up by the District Leader who drove us to a Zone P-day in the city. We just played sports and hung out. Some ward member had left a bag of frozen Dim-Sims in the freezer and one of the fresh missionaries put it in the microwave for 20 minutes and went back to play sports and forgot about it. It smoked up the building. Luckily it didn't catch anything on fire but it was kind of sad all the same.

A Dim Sims is Chinese-inspired meat dumpling-style snack food popular in Australia. The dish normally consists of a large ball of pork or other meat, cabbage and flavourings (ginger), encased in a wrapper similar to that of a traditional shumai dumpling. Dim Sims differ from typical Chinese dumplings in that they are often much larger, have a thicker skin and are shaped more robustly. They are primarily sold in Fish and chip shops, service stations, corner stores and Chinese or Asian takeaway outlets in Australia.

Tuesday and Wednesday we just worked hard and visited a lot of people we hadn't seen in a while. Thursday was Elder Howard's birthday. Tuesday though one of the members had put on a little birthday dinner for him and it was good fun. He got a nice cake and a couple of presents. Thursday was his birthday but we had training in Ipswich so we took the train in.

I got my package Thursday. Just so you know, all the other Elders were jealous I got such a big box. Thank you for that I really need those things. Everything got through alright. The shaver is good and works really well. I love the Snap-On calendar too. I opened it at a member house. It was funny because when they saw the calendar they though it was definitely not going to be a G-rated calendar and why my parents would sent something like that … lol. (it had cars only...not girlie pictures) It was funny. All good though. I gave away the Twinkies away. They're not all that great.

Lake Wivenhoe

We had to visit with a member way up in the top of our area on Saturday. Another member took us up and on the way we stopped at Lake Wivenhoe Dam and took a couple of pictures. It was very beautiful and a really cool thing to see. A year ago the Lake was filled to capacity and when they had to let out heaps of water it flooded all of Brisbane city (Kiefer participated in some of the clean-up from that flood). It was an interesting sight to see. Oh and on a spiritual note, we had a good experience Friday. We have an investigator about 30 minutes from where we live that we've been visiting for a while. We have been trying to catch her at a time when we could teach a lesson. She and her sons have quite a bit of property and horses so we've helped feed horses and do chores around the place just to build trust. On Friday though we were able to sit down and have a good discussion and get to know her. We didn't teach much but at the end of the lesson we simply asked to close with a prayer. Elder Howard offered a simple prayer and after that she was just in tears and said no one had ever done that for her. She was definitely touched by the Spirit. We'll be working with her in the coming weeks.

I talked to the Missionaries in the area where Allison (Arlene's daughter – a Hatch cousin) is she just got married to an Aussie guy that I met when I was there. He's pretty interesting and I'm sure they're doing well. They're coming to church and doing pretty good. I'll prolly end up running into them again before I leave.

Other than that not a lot is going on. This next Wednesday is ANZAC day. It is basically like Australia's Memorial Day. Proselyting on that day will be challenging but we'll do our best. Thanks for the emails have a great week. I'll be praying for you. We'll talk to you next week.

Love you

Elder Hatch

April 14, 2012


Good to hear from you and to know that things are going well. The week has been busy but it has been good. We've seen some progress with some good potentials that we have, so we'll be working with them. We got to teach a couple of good lessons here and there so it been an uplifting week. Wednesday Elder Howard was feeling a bit sick but we went out and worked anyways and were able to teach a lesson in the process. Thursday was our Zone Meeting which was just crazy. That evening we had dinner at the Ward Mission Leader’s home and then taught a lesson to an older lady who is working on getting to the Temple. It was a good day. Friday we did our weekly planning and then went out tracting. While tracting we ran into a young family and the dad talked with us and listen to our message which was really nice. He was a good guy, he wasn't interested in learning more, but at least we were able to plant a seed. That was good.

Saturday/Sunday was Conference (General Conference broadcast). Far out the Saturday sessions were great, honestly. I always love those sessions the best. Maybe it was just my Companion and I, but Conference had a different feel to it. The talks had common themes and it seems as if the brethren have a new sense of urgency in their messages and council. Many good talks, Elder Ballard, Holland, and Oaks, and Perry all gave great talks. I DK there were so many good talks given I can’t say I had a favorite or anything. Good interesting conference and the next six month will be interesting as well I reckon. Today we have P-day and the Zone wants to get together to play volleyball with the YSA (Young Single Adults) but we really aren't too keen on going but will prolly just go anyways. They just get too into it; just too serious.

It was good to hear that Devan Gardner is leaving on her Mission (France Lyon Mission). She'll be a great missionary. It will be a hard mission for her but she'll do well. We have two Frenchmen in our Zone. They said France isn't very open to the church, sadly. (picture: Devan (left) with her Sister at her Open House last week)

Elder Howard's birthday is this week. He's excited. It should be a good week. We'll be getting things moving. Thanks for the email and for sending the package. Haven't got it yet but I'll prolly get it this Thursday when we have our meeting in Brisbane. Thanks for everything, love you and will talk to you next week.

Elder Hatch

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

April 9, 2012

Hey everyone,

It has been a good week. It’s good to hear from everyone and that you're all doing well. I loved your email Colin. Those 10 page papers are killer but they're good for you. I had to do one for Book of Mormon class and that was just something else. The references and the writing style that goes with it is hard to get used to at first but like you said its really easy to sit down to write it and just get lost in it. Trying to put up a statement then give evidence and so forth can be painful. Stick with it though put in the time. You know that already though. Push though you only have a couple more weeks. It’s crazy to think you've already finished a year at uni.

I have good news. I'm still here in Somerset (Ward) for at least another 6 weeks. That will be good. We're excited and we will get things moving this transfer in the area. For the overview of the week: Tuesday/Wednesday we did some good finding. School is out for a couple of weeks so we're trying to catch more people at home and get some potential investigators to work with. Thursday we had a Zone Conference in Brisbane in the morning. We wanted to save on km's by taking the train in to the city, so we could get more work done here, but it didn't happen. We got up at 4:30 am, got all dressed, but then 5 minutes before we had to leave to catch the train, my Companion realized that he had left his wallet at dinner the night before. That was disappointing. We just drove the 100 km's into the city then 100 km's back. The training was good.
Lorin Nicholson came and spoke to us (see previous post). It was really good and very uplifting. Friday we basically worked all day doing service for various Ward members and doing our weekly planning. Saturday was deep clean and mow the lawns day. By the end of the day Saturday, we were just smashed but it was good. Sunday was Easter which was good. There were a heap of people at Church.

Monday night we organized a BBQ at our place and had a fire in the backyard. It was really good. It just poured down raining right as people were showing up but then the rain moved out. We had a good little feed were able to have a good spiritual lesson around the open fire and roast some marshmallows. It was fun.

I’m really looking forward to the General Conference broadcast this weekend. In between sessions we're going with some recent converts and nonmembers to get lunch at a really good Portuguese chicken place so it will be fun. Have some other good meals lined up for the week and it should be a fun one. Thanks for the emails and prayers drive safe and stay out of trouble. Love you heaps. Talk to you next week.

Elder Hatch

Lorin Nicholson

Lorin Nicholson was declared legally blind at the age of four, however he was determined not to let his disability exclude him from living a full and meaningful life.

Born in 1969 in Wollongong, NSW, to parents John and Julie Nicholson, Lorin is the eldest of six children. The family moved to Tamworth, NSW, where Lorin began and completed his schooling in the mainstream system. He gained a college diploma with high distinctions and in his youth was an accomplished cyclist, swimmer and springboard diver.

One of Australia’s highest selling independent artists, and a much sought after motivational speaker, Lorin has presented more than 2500 inspiring concerts and keynote addresses across Australia, New Zealand and America in the past six years. In January 2005 he was named one of Australia’s finest musicians at the CMAA Country Music Awards of Australia and is a regular performer on the prestigious Vision Australia Carols by Candlelight.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

April 2, 2012

Hey Family,

It has been a normal week. We’ve been working with less actives this week and haven't had too much free time to do a lot of finding which has been different. It is week five of six again. Time flies; it’s crazy. Next week will be transfers. I’m not sure what will happen but I hope I get to stay another one. I really love it here and the Ward really has clicked with my Companion and I. That has been a great blessing. We got a couple of referrals this last week so we're hoping to start teaching at least one of them in the coming week. We have struggled since the last transfer to find people to teach.

I’m looking forward to General Conference not this weekend but next weekend (broadcast delay). I really hope I'm still in Somerset (Ward) for another transfer but it will be good all the same. We have Zone Conference in Brisbane this coming Thursday, which should be good and uplifting. We're thinking about taking the train into the city instead of driving so we can do more work in our area later in the month. Other than that not much else is going on. I prolly won’t be emailing next Monday but it will be on Tuesday. I'll hear from you then. Just another month or so and it will be Mothers Day; looking forward to it. Sorry, nothing too crazy happening here.

I’m glad your vacation in Arizona went well for you. It sounds like you had a great time. Grandma and Grandpa (Guttery) look really good. Far out there has been a lot of stuff happening there.

I’m sorry to hear about Austin (broken collarbone – so much for that Missionary Reunion); man that sucks. I hope his recovery goes well and that he'll be able to finish the semester or term at school (BYU-I). Travel safely as you return back to Arizona (for Aunt Nivla’s funeral – April 9th).

What was really shocking was that dad got a new TV...that hasn't happened in like almost 20 (actually it is his first real TV). Take a picture of it in spot. It sounds like a sweet set up. It’s cool to hear that dad will be transitioning to working at home too. If you can work from home you could almost just put off you retirement for another 10 years and be living the high life all the same. Far out. I guess times really are tough for even the great Lockheed Martin.

Thanks for the updates; although it is kind of bitter sweet. Love you.

Elder Hatch

Aunt Nivla

Kiefer's aunt Nivla Hatch died unexpectedly on Friday, March 30. Nivla and her husband Norece (Shorty) Hatch were serving a Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Argentina. She will be greatly missed by her many family members and friends. The following are Kiefer's comments about Nivla's passing: "I am sorry to hear about Nivla. That is shocking to say the least. It's weird how life can change so quickly just like that. She was doing the work of the Lord though and she will be blessed for her service to the Lord." April 2, 2012

March 25, 2012


Good to hear from you sound like you’re doing well. The Temple was good. It’s definitely a blessing to get to go. The session we attended was full to capacity. Six Missionaries turned up about 15 minutes before it started and they just couldn't get in. Normally our sessions are mostly just missionaries but we had some randoms show so I guess that’s why it was busier. It was good; it’s just a long train into and out of the city (Brisbane).

It’s been a good couple of days. We've been working with a number of less active members and are in the process of going thru the Ward list and contacting those people that we don’t know just to try to clear up the Ward list and to get it updated right. It has been keeping us busy. We've been doing a fun spiritual thought with the families that have a lot of kids. Its goes something like this. We take the two parents and they stand on either side of a skateboard. The kid stands, blindfolded, on the skateboard and puts his hands on either parent’s shoulders. We, the Missionaries, then pick the skateboard up about six inches off the ground and the parents bend their knees. The kids feel like they're way in the air and start squirming around. Just after that we tip them off the board. Some do a dive, others freak out, but it’s funny when they realize that they were, in reality, only a couple inches off the ground. It’s been fun. We've used that to relate to Helaman 5:12 but it is not too hard to find other scriptures to tie into the lesson.

In the coming week it is looking like it will be busy and we have a dinner every night which is great. Ward Council is this Thursday and Saturday will be a Stake Sport Day at a big sporting center in our area. We're looking forward to it. Free lunch...can’t say no to that one. We'll be inviting heaps of people...anyone we can, lol. It'll be good. Sorry for the short email, I'll try to do something crazy next week. Maybe have something cool to talk about; all is good still. Have a good week. Enjoy General Conference we won’t get the broadcast until the 14th and 15th. Love you. Talk to you next week.

Elder Hatch

March 21, 2012

It’s good to hear from you sound like things are busy as always. Glad to hear Andrew (Shirk) got married. I bet that was a great experience. The Yellowstone trip (late summer “guy” trip for Ross) sound like it will be sweet! My Companion basically grew up in Yellowstone so I ask him about it. It sounds like a great vacation spot. From what I hear the bear and the buffalo are interesting but it will be fun all the same. It’s sad to hear you won’t be going to Utah for General Conference this year. That would have been fun and I could have watched for you on the big screen. I can't wait for Conference it will be good.

It’s been a busy week. We've had two trainings and a Temple trip in the last week so we've done a heap of traveling. I'm not sure where to start it’s been a long week and my brain is just gone. It’s getting cooler or, at least it has been cooler the last week, which has been great. Before long it will be cold and I'll have to have a little whinge ("whinge" is an English word meaning "to complain or whine", usually for a trivial issue) about that one. It’s been a good week we've worked hard and have been doing well. We’ve been working with several less actives and have generally been doing finding. My Companion is very American and is very, very proud of it. It’s been fun talking to members and people around the place. He had the gift of the gab which really is a blessing as Missionary work goes.
Since we're out in the country its legal to have fires no larger than 1 meter which is huge so we built a small campfire in the back yard and we're going to start having BBQs over the open fire in the evening times when we don't have a dinner.

The members here are really good to us though and we've had a meal just about every day the last couple of week. We're really blessed. It’s a great place to be. We saw a couple of snakes this last week which was cool. One was a skinny green snake that was really long. It had to be at least a meter long if not more. We tried to run it over but it got away. Our other snake encounter was actually on our back porch steps. It was just kind of chillin on the step when I saw it. It was only a little brown one but we tried to catch it all the same because who doesn't want a poisonous snake as a pet. We didn't actually catch it got away. We'll watch for it over the next week.

Other than that, not much happening that is news. Sorry, not a whole lot to talk about. Send me an email Colin and let me know what you’re up to; even if it’s just a short one. No worries. Talk to you next week. Love you.

Elder Hatch

March 12, 2012


Sounds like things are very busy. It’s good to hear you're all doing well. I'm keeping you in my prayers.

It was a good week. We didn't have a whole lot scheduled going into the week but we found things to keep us busy and worked well. We smashed km's (kilometers) this week but hopefully the Mission President will be raising our allotment so we can get around better and see more people. We didn't have very many lessons this last week but we did find several good potentials and we've set up times to come back and see them later next week. It’s been good. We've been getting fed well and the mornings are getting cooler so fall is just around the corner which will be a change. In the last week we’ve had clear skies and lot of sun. It’s been nice. We've been really blessed in the last week with people to see, potential investigators and good weather. This last Saturday we spent most of the day doing service for various Ward members. At 7am we were at one of our home teaching families and we helped the single Sister cut her trees and hedges. We were at that until around 11am then we had to go help an 80 year old Sister mow her yard and whipper-snipper it. It was 2pm be the time we got home and we were just wasted. All the same though, we had to keep going. Our lawn had to be cut so we spent the rest of the afternoon until dinner cutting the lawn at our house. By the end of the day we were so tired. I can't even explain it. At least now all the paddocks are cut and we should be good for another month at least. I love service. It’s a great thing. I'll attach some pictures of cutting our paddock as well last week.

It was something else. No we didn't run into too many snakes. Our P-day project for today is to build a fire pit. It’s legal to have fires here in the country as long as they're just small so we're going to build a pit and have BBQ's later in the week when we don’t have a dinner date; tin foil dinners and so for. It should be fun. We're excited.

We have a busy week to come; training in Ipswich Thursday, next Tuesday training in Ipswich again, and then a Temple trip next Wednesday. I won’t have P-day next Monday, it will be next Wednesday. I won’t email until late Wednesday or even Thursday…just have to see how we go.

Have fun at uni Colin. I was very sad to hear that my phone was broken (Colin broke Kiefer’s phone)… just saying.. lol. Have fun, work hard. We’ll talk to you soon. Thanks for everything. Love you heaps.

Elder Hatch