Monday, December 16, 2013

Week of December 16, 2013- Another 6 in Newcastle!

So I'll have another 6 weeks in Newcastle! It'll be good because Elder Fronk and I see a lot of good things happening so it's going to be fun to be here! Elder Fronk is going to Edmond, and my new companion is from So. Cal. He's in my zone right now, actually just a couple computers down emailing with me. He's a Spanish speaking Elder so that will be fun! That means I get extra study time while he does language study so that will be good for me! I'm excited!

We really only had 1 sweet experience this week. Well we had a lot more, but only 1 worth writing about. We unfortunately have been dropping almost all of our investigators recently, so we have been having fun doing that. Not. haha but we were tracting like 2 weeks ago and we met this lady named Lee. She's  an older lady and she said that she worked with a Mormon lady once, and she used to have a Book of Mormon, but she lost it. She said, "I don't believe what Joseph Smith believed." So we talked to her a little bit and replaced her copy of the Book of Mormon and that was cool! She said she would read it but everyone here says that so we never think much of it. Well this week we stopped by to see if she had read and she said, "Yeah I read about 1/3 of the Book of Mormon." We asked what she thought and she said, "Nephi and his brothers didn't get along did they?" Haha so we talked about that and she had a bunch of questions about the Nephites and the Lamanites. We answered a ton of those questions and it was good! Then she said, "In Jacob 2:27 it says not to have multiple wives. So why did some of the Mormons have more than one wife?" So we explained that. We talked for a while longer and she said, "You guys should come back next Thursday so we can talk more." So we hope that she finishes the Book of Mormon by then because now that she's through 2 Nephi nothing can stop her now right? Badum Pow! Haha

Well that's about it for us. I saw my first live possum. Those things are pretty big- it's crazy! We also found out the people from the show "Skunk Whispers" live like a mile away. haha I'd be shocked if anyone has seen that show, but if you have, that's in Newcastle! Anyways, that's about it for us here. Have a great week! Happy holidays! Love you all!

Showing off a picture a little girl drew for him!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Week of December 9, 2013

I gotta start this email by saying that I don't like ice, snow, or any weather under 70 degrees. Elder Fronk was talking about how cold it was the other day (He's from the Bear River area, so it's cold if he's saying that) and he asked why I wasn't complaining. Haha I told him, "Elder Fronk, as soon as the temperature gets below freezing I'm just mad. I could care less if it's 30 degrees or -50 degrees. I'm just mad." Haha I just miss not having to wear so much clothing! I want the short sleeved white shirts back! Anyways that was all the complaining I plan on doing in this email.

So this was a slow week, but still a good one! We're going to have to reset the baptismal date with this family, but no worries. They're still very interested! We had a great visit with the mom the other day, and she said she really wants all her kids to be baptized, including her 20 year old son, so she's going to try to get him over so we can teach him too! That was cool. We really like them and they're a great family!

It was a pretty bad sleet storm on Thursday, but we weren't told not to work so we went and walked down Main Street and when we got to the gym to warm up a little bit the owner said, "What the heck are you two bone heads doing?" So we told him until we heard otherwise we were going to work. He said, "No you're not. You're going back to your apartment or you're staying here until I can give you a ride back." So we walked back to the apartment and right when we got back we got a text saying cars and bikes were grounded, but we were still to go out and work. So we walked back out and when we got next to the gym, he was pulling out to drive home and he saw us so he waved for us to come over. We knew he'd be mad so as soon as we opened the door I said, "We were commanded to work!" He said, "No you weren't." Haha so we got in the truck and he drove us back. We called our district leader what happened and he told us just to stay in until it stopped sleeting. So we were in until 8 that night. But we went back out that night and got to walk in the ice for an hour. That was fun!….

Anyways that night there was a ton of snow that came, so there was snow everywhere and then ice under that, so it was pretty slick and the roads were still terrible. The cars were grounded again, so it was a day of walking. The sidewalks weren't shoveled, and we couldn't find a snow shovel anywhere to do service, so we just walked about 10-13 miles on the snow and ice. It was pretty crazy! We found a new investigator though so it was worth it! Her name is Ashley and she's from Sacramento! She had us come back the next day, so we went back and taught her. She's engaged and just getting into religion. She just started the Bible and now wants to start the Book of Mormon! She was concerned about how the Bible was compiled and she thought it could be missing things, or that important things could be left out, so she was excited about the Book of Mormon! Hopefully this week we can teach her fiancé as well! We'll see!

That's about it for us here in Newcastle! The Christmas Devotional last night was great! My favorite part was during the clip where the Primary was singing and the little boy winked at the little girl right in front of Elder Russel M. Nelson. Haha Shout out to that young one! He's got guts and game! Haha I about died when I saw that- it was too funny! That reminds me so there's a family in our ward who fed us on Sunday and they have a 2 year old that can only say the word "No." So every time I asked him for a high five he'd say no, every time I asked him to pass me the ball he'd say no, and every time I said yes to him he said no. Haha I'd say "Yes!" and then he'd yell back "No!" And so I said "Yes!!" And he'd say "No!!!" Haha it was pretty cute. His dad threw me a ball and little Zander (His name is Alexander, zander for short) came and tackled me! haha His dad was a football stud, so he's been teaching him from a young age. It was funny though I looked at Elder Fronk and I said, "This is going to be a great practice!" and then I looked at Zander and I said, "Will you be baptized by someone holding the Priesthood authority of God?" Haha and he obviously said the only word he knows how, "No!" Haha so I said "What would be holding you back?" Haha the other missionaries there died laughing! I couldn't resist! Anyways, yeah that's the fun story of the week I guess!

Well be safe in the crazy weather! Hope everyone is having a great week! Happy holidays! Love you guys!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Week of December 2, 2013- Thanksgiving

What a week! Last Monday we had dinner with the Clowards. They were going out of town, and their 10 year old son shot a turkey the day before, so we got a wild turkey Thanksgiving on Monday! It was gamey turkey, but it was good! Sister Cloward is from Germany and she was teaching us some German! It was fun! And a couple of the sides she made and the dessert was German, so I thought about Adam a ton. I told her that my brother speaks nearly perfect German and she said,  "I'll be the judge of that!" So she really wants to talk to Adam now!

On Tuesday we had a cool lesson with a recent convert about Patriarchal blessings, and she really wants one now! She's been baptized for just over a year now and she's read through the Book of Mormon 10+ times, D&C 5 times, the Pearl of Great Price 4 times, and Jesus the Christ. She's making her way through discourses of the Prophet Brigham Young. It's always fun going over there because she quizzes you on things like, "Where in the Book of Mormon does it talk about peeping wizards and unicorns?" And she asked us about the East winds and what those are. We had no clue. Then she asked us recently some question she had from the Brigham Young book, so she keeps us on our toes! We also helped our Ward Mission Leader finish a treehouse! That was cool! I attached a pic. We also helped a member put in her oven so she could have Thanksgiving, so we came to the rescue there!  (Turn your head to the left to see the picture- I'm technologically challenged!)

Wednesday we did our weekly service at the library, and tried a bunch of people, but not much happened. Thursday we ate at our Ward Mission Leader, the Sagastizados, house. He's from El Salvador and so we had a great meal! It was spanish chicken, pappusas, tons of chips and homemade salsa, tamales and a bunch of other gringo food. Haha it was fun though! They had a ton of friends and family over. He had us all sing I am a Child of God, and had us share a message. There were a few nonmembers there which was cool! It was extremely powerful! They had a man there who is a palm reader. He said that I'm not evil and I'll live a long time. That was good! Haha But that was basically what we did.

Friday we had district meeting, and had a couple cool finding miracles! We found a family and they said they would love to have us back to talk to them some more, so we're excited about them! Saturday we drove the Blanchard Elders to Norman to exchange back, and we ate at Red Robbin. Elder Anderson is from the Bay Area, and he's a huge football fan. So we had a very long friendly argument about which sport was ordained by God. Turns out the Monday Night Football was started the same year as FHE, and other than that the games are always played on Sunday. He says that's because God knows how special football is so he gave them permission. I said it's a crafty tool that Satan uses to get us away from Church and family home evening, and that God combats that by having us gather together in the chapel for Basketball. He'll be converted before I'm through with him! Haha

Later that day we stopped by a potential's house who we had a great experience with last Sunday. The daughter and the Mom both asked us for a Book of Mormon, so we stopped by to see if they had been reading and what they thought. Their teenage daughter said that she was telling everyone all week that she was a Mormon. Haha she met her boyfriend's dad for the first time I guess and told him she was Mormon. I guess he got all defensive and was saying, "Well you have your beliefs and I have mine." Then she started reading parts of the Book of Mormon to him! It was way sweet! She was kinda doing it playfully, but still it was really cool! So we told her that we'd love to come by when her mom was home and talk to her about the Plan our Heavenly Father laid out for us, and how it tells us where we're from, why we're here, and where we're going after this life. She said, "I'd love that! Come by tomorrow afternoon!"

So Sunday we went over there and we taught them all the Plan of Salvation. They had a ton of questions about it, and the daughter had some questions about whether or not she was going to hell because of things she's done in the past. She was really surprised that we didn't put down a hell cutout and was asking about it and we told her that almost everyone gets some degree of glory because God wants all his children to be happy. We explained that by being baptized all that she might have done in the past will be forgiven, and she'll have a fresh clean slate. She was really excited about it! So we asked them to be baptized and the daughter without hesitation said, "Yes! I want to!" Then the mom started telling us her concerns, but we resolved those. She said that she would be. Then she turned to her 14 year old son and said, "You wanna be baptized?" He said, "No not really." And she said, "What? Why not?" Haha she resolved all his concerns for him right then and there! It was cool! So we told them that we had prayerfully considered when they could have an answer to their prayer and know that these things were true, and we know that they can have the confirmation by December 28th. They accepted that date, and should be coming to the ward Christmas potluck on Friday and church on Sunday! We have a lot of work to do with them to get them ready for that date, but we're extremely excited for them! It will be such an exciting time for them!

The other miracle that happened with that lesson was it went way longer than we expected it to. So we were in there teaching until 5:10. Our dinner appointment was at 5, so as soon as we got out we pulled out the phone and the member had texted us and told us that they had to move dinner back to 5:30. It was perfect! Haha so things worked out great!

We're extremely excited for this week coming up. We have a few more people we feel we can set baptism dates with! We're extremely excited to see the work slowly but surely progressing here! Can't wait to get after it!

That's about it for us here on this side of the state. Hope all is well back home! Love you all so much! Have a great week and hope everyone survived Black Friday ok! God be with you until we email again!