Three of the best days I have had since living in China were spent in Hong Kong March 12th - 14th at the Conference for the Associated Sisters In Asia, or The A.S.I.A. Women's Conference. Three days of fellowship, service and learning, laughing and being spiritually uplifted with hundreds of other women of The Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints living in Asia.
Our theme for the conference was taken from Deuteronomy 31:6. What a perfect theme and scripture to sooth our fears and calm our hearts in a chaotic world.
Our wonderful committee was made up of energetic sisters from all over Asia who put this whole conference together electronically using phones, email and Skype! What a blessing they have been in the lives of all the sisters in the far reaches of Asia.
The Conference started Thursday afternoon so Darryl and I took the opportunity Thursday morning to attend a session of the Hong Kong Temple.
At registration I was able to meet Dori Shaner who served as Relief Society President for our Central China International District Branch (in China known as the Skype Branch) when we first arrived in China. It was wonderful to meet her in person!
Immediately following registration all the sisters began to get acquainted with one another as we immediately went to work on the Conference Service Projects. Over the 3 days of the conference we made fleece blankets and knit baby wrap carriers for the Pathfinders Organization.
We had a wonderful meeting with Elder Garrett W. Gong, President in the Asia Area Presidency, and his wife Susan, who spoke to us and uplifted us with experiences from their own lives and the lives of those they have served.
I was blessed to be able to sing in the Conference Choir and to also lead the music for the first General Meeting.
I was also asked to sing a solo in one of the choir numbers which was such a tender mercy for me.
On Friday and Saturday we had Break Out sessions where we were taught wonderful Gospel principles from the lives of our fellow sisters in Asia. The only problem was there was such a wonderful variety of classes and we just didn't have time to attend them all.
This session was taught by my current Tandye Calvano. She was wonderful!
The food committee fed us luncheon on Friday and a tasty breakfast on Saturday that was enjoyed by all.
On Saturday at our closing session we were privileged to hear from President Patrick Wong, President of the Hong Kong Temple and Brother Chi Hong (Sam) Wong, Second Counselor in the Asia Area Presidency and his wife Sister Carol Lu Wong. What a wonderful benediction this was to a terrific conference!
Most of the pictures on this blog you can find on the Associated Sisters In Asia Conference website here, along with a great video put together for our Video theme song of Stand in the Light, here. I submitted a picture of my granddaughter making cookies that they used in the video.
And Finally, here are random pictures of some of the wonderful women I met. They have touched my heart so and how I wish to see them again and share the tears and laughter of those beautiful days.
Sister Susan Jackson from Shenzhen, China - a spiritual rock
Sister Karen Rich from Seoul, South Korea who had us laughing and crying as she exhorted us to consciously choose Faith over Fear!
Sister Heather Brown attending from India - a light and joy to all who met her. She was in charge of the Music.
Sister Debby Dicken, who lives in Hong Kong but has lived in other parts of Asia for years, was the Service Project co-chair who's love for those women she's never even met filled all of us with a desire to serve them.
I was so happy to meet Tandye Calvano my CCID Relief Society President and presenter at the conference who's delightful presentation made us take a hard look at honesty and integrity in our lives and made us want to improve.
On the left is Sister Carrie Giles from Taipei, Taiwan, Conference Chair who kept us smiling and filled us with love, and on the right is Sister Cherilyn Williams, one of my heros who is currently living in Islamabad, Pakistan. She is Amazing!
Let me just tell you that Cherilyn is a Registered Nurse who taught us the importance of body armor and spiritual armor and who lives an extraordinary life! I can't wait to see her again someday!
We even had women who used to live in Asia who are now back in the USA come to uplift us. On the right is Gena Mabee, an author and presenter from Arizona.
Associated Sisters In Asia
Words cannot adequately express how spiritually uplifted, strengthened and fed I was from attending this wonderful conference. It is a time and experience that I will cherish all the days of my life.