Hello! We have had a pretty good week here. We were able to talk to some interesting people, as well as explore some places we had never been. Monday we ended up walking down King street which is the main road that goes through old town Alexandria. We went to an art museum there by the Potomac river. The museum used to be a torpedo factory back in world war 2. There is quite a bit of history here and it is cool to see all of the old stuff. On Tuesday we had zone conference. So we spent from 8:30 am till 4 pm in a meeting. I think that is my least favorite meeting that we go to. It's way to long and I always end up with a headache. We had to go a little early because our ride had to have a car inspection so we decided before the meeting to go get some McDonald's. We were definitely glad that we did. Even though it was long it turned out to be really good. We learned a lot about how to address people's concerns by first teaching faith in Christ. It is vital for people to have that faith before we try to answer their questions because if they don't have faith in the first place then it doesn't do them any good. We also learned a lot about temple work and how we need to get our recent converts to the temple. Retention rate drops significantly if they don't go to the temple within the first 6 months. I don't think I ever told you guys this but I had the opportunity to speak in sacrament meeting last week. I spoke on having non members come into the homes of the members. Luckily I only had to speak for about 10 minutes so it wasn't too bad. We ended up have a youth speaker, Elder Cook and I, and then our ward mission leader. Way to many speakers for 1 meeting. We went till about 12:25....only a few minutes over. We were able to meet with our progressing investigator this week. We talked about tithing and the word of wisdom. He is engaged to a less active member, and they are making progress in coming onto the church. He is on board with being baptized, but they live together right now and aren't going to get married until June. He also works every other Sunday so it makes it hard for us to see his true commitment. I guess we will see how it goes. Yesterday we had a regional broadcast from Salt Lake City. It was to something like 130 stakes on the east coast. It was pretty good. We heard from Sister Reeves, as well as Elder Hales, and Elder Anderson. We also have regular stake conference this week. We just have all sorts of fun meetings these two weeks. We walked down by the Potomac river yesterday. We didn't know really where we were going just hoping to see some people to talk to. We met this couple that we ended up talking to for about 45 minutes in the bank of the river. We talked about what we do as missionaries, what we want to do in life, pretty much anything that you could think of we at least talked a little about it. It was good to just have a normal conversation with someone. Ultimately that shows them that we are normal people and hopefully it will lead to further interest in the future. We talked to a guy named Cornelius as well this week. He says that he loves Mormons and every time he sees us he wants to talk. He is a black guy that we first met in Mcdonalds a few weeks ago. Every time we talk to him we can smell alcohol on him. He is a cool guy and we like talking to him. Every time he shows us his scar on his chest from when he got shot in New York. We meet a lot of interesting people here. But it's fun. that is our week in a nutshell. Glad to hear everything is going good with you guys. Love you!
Monday, April 27, 2015
Monday, April 13, 2015
Transfers are always really hectic. But it's to be expected when you get a call on Tuesday on whether or not your leaving, pack all day Wednesday and get everything figured out for your departure. Then of course Thursday is the big meeting which takes all day. Go home that night and it's hard to do much besides unsettle and organize your stuff. So transfer week is just a bucket of fun. Ahh the city. It's an interesting place. We have "old town Alexandria" which has lots of interesting shops and there are always street performers. It's interesting to walk down and see all of the different types of people. We are able to walk right up to the Potomac river and look over into Maryland. Definitely much different than my last areas. We live in a high rise apartment on the 4th floor and from our study room we can see the Washington monument. I will have to take some pictures and send them to you guys. Not a whole lot going on. There is one investigator that we are going to be working with. We have an appointment with him his week so we will see how that goes. The ward is very small. That average sacrament meeting attendance is 150. Looks like we are going to have our work cut out for us. I think that I will enjoy my time here. Who knows, with the new mission president I might get lost in the shuffle of everything and spend the remainder of my time here. I sent a video earlier today. If you can't watch it let me know and i will try again. There was a member in the Algonkian ward that was so kind as to let me borrow some juggling pins. He said that he has ones you can light on fire and that if I got good enough that I could do it. Well that's what the video is of. I think that is one of those rare opportunities that I had to capitalize on. On Saturday we did go all the way back to Ashburn for a baptism. It was the family that went through a divorce and they were unaware that their son would now be counted as a convert baptism and he would need to be taught by us. I was able to be a witness and then we got permission for him to be confirmed right afterwards. So I was also able to participate in that. Afterwards I went and talked to his mom and she got super emotional. I was really glad to be able to go back and see it all of the way through. I am going to try to stay in contact with them by email. On Wednesday we had a miracle happen. After a dry spell of not being able to teach the Vannie girls, we were finally able to teach them again before I left. It had been over 2 months since the last time we were able to teach them. They still want to be baptized, it's just a matter of when. That will probably be another baptism I get to go back for. Sounds like everything is going good at home. Always good to here. Love you!
|The fire Dancer!|
Monday, April 6, 2015
Good evening! Sorry this letter is so late, but we had a full day. We went to D.C. This morning for our final preparation day of the transfer. We were able to see a few different places. We did a lot of walking around to all of the outside memorials. To be perfectly honest, once you have seen in one time then after that it gets pretty boring going again. But it was still fun. There were a lot of people. I hope that my next area isn't in the city because I do not like walking down the street with that many people. I like my little areas like Warrenton. We did a couple of service projects this week. One of them was to our family we are working with to get their 9 year old son baptized. We were able to talk to her for a while and figure out why things in our ward didn't work out for them and why they have their records in the Ashburn ward. We were able to connect pretty well since they attend their and also have family in the ward. We have their baptism set for this upcoming Saturday the 11th and we are really looking forward to that. We had a lesson with our newest investigator Sherri as well. We talked about the Gospel of Jesus Christ which consists of Faith, repentance, baptism, gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. She really liked it and we think that she will continue to progress. I am really grateful to the members that we have in is ward and he encouragement and the assistance that they offer to us. That Wednesday that we had a lesson scheduled we got a phone call from one of our ward missionaries who we had come with us to the last lesson and she asked if we would like her there this time as well. I was really grateful for her in her willingness and desire to help out. The reason last week that we had to switch our preparation day was because of a funeral. The funeral was for a 28 year old who died from cancer. We ended up staying at the church building for 5 hours helping. It was sad to see the family, but also reassuring to see others testimonies of the spirit world as well as the afterlife and that we can be sealed together forever. When we were right near the Washington monument we saw some Jehovah's witnesses with there little stand with information. I decided that I had never really learned what they believe so we went and talked with them for about 10 minutes. I learned what scriptures they refer to when the call God Jehovah, and a few other things. They gave me a little book about what the bible really teaches. I spent about 40 minutes looking over it and comparing beliefs as well as similarities. It's interesting to see what different religions believe. If nothing else I believe that we left a really good impression on them and had a good conversation. I wish I had more to write about, but it's difficult. I think with this week being transfers there will be much more to write about. Thanks for all you do! Love you!
Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Good afternoon! We have had a good week here, but then again every week is good in the kingdom of God. We weren't super busy but we still had some exciting things happen. Last Monday as you saw we were able to go to great falls. When we come out here we will have to go there. I also got a few more pictures I will send from it. That night we had a lesson with our investigator Jon and his girlfriend Mandy. We talked about the word of wisdom. It was a good lesson, a little rocky at the start, but smoothed out towards the end. We have had a hard time knowing where to go from here. They are both awesome and have shown major progression which is really good to see. On Wednesday we had a lesson with a new lady we are working with named Sherri. She is super awesome. The Spanish elders have been working with her for a while now so she already has a pretty good understanding. She has a baptismal goal set for April 25th and we are excited for that. She didn't come to church this last weekend since she was sore from the dentist, but she did go to the women's broadcast on Saturday which was really good. We are going to continue to work with her. The Vannie girls that we were working with are still in the back of my mind, and also in the wards mind. Our bishop had some contact with them last week and there is a possibility that we will teach them a few times this week in his home and they will set a baptism date for April sometime. That is the hope at least. I really pray that the moms heart is softened and she lets her daughters participate and be baptized. All of the baptisms will be happening after I leave. It makes me super sad, but I know that I will get to come back for them. I know that those people we are working with will get baptized. It's just a matter of when. We do have Ryan set up for April 11th and that is solid. We were asked to be the witnesses so that will be cool. But another crummy thing is that is also transfer week. I will probably be headed to new area on the 9th. I'm going to do everything in my power to get back here. Hopefully I don't go too far so it will be easy. I have really enjoyed the time I have been able to spend in the Algonkin ward. It has been really awesome and a good ward. One of the better wards that I have been in. But I am off to my next and possibly last area if I do get transferred. As of now I only have 24 weeks left. Pretty weird. But that's still enough time to where I have to keep focused. I'll save some stuff to write about till next week so it's not so boring. Love you guys!