Friday, November 25, 2011
Alright! Well the last week is going pretty good. Its kind of a different schedule because of thanksgiving, but we've gotten to see lots of apostles! On tuesday night, D. Todd Christopherson came to our devotional and it was awesome!!!! We were kind of hanging around the side by the parking lot ten minutes after it had ended, and people had cleared out. It was just me and 3 other guys in my district when he came driving by on his way home, He slowed down and rolled down his window and said "Thank you Elders!" and we said thank you back. It was pretty awesome. Today we have a relaxed schedule. We started with breakfast as usual and then study time for an hour and after that we had our Thanksgiving morning devotional, and Russel M. Nelson spoke at that one, so that was really cool. We've been waiting our whole time here to have an apostle come and we're finally getting a couple in our last week! It was a good talk! His wife told us somewhat concerning his achievements as a heart surgeon and then how he dropped it all to become an apostle. After that, we had our thanksgiving dinner in the cafeteria. Not much like home at all. I made sure to get 4 glasses of sprite-cranberry juice so that I could hold to tradition. This afternoon/after dinner we're doing a service project of assembling health kits for the humanitarian services. and tonight we have another devotional, there will definitely be another apostle and it might even be 2 apostles since its a 2 hour devotional.
So thanksgiving, has been alright so far, but I miss family. Seeing apostles will make it worth it though hahaha.
The rest of this week: Tomorrow, we have infield orientation all day. Which I'm not sure exactly what it is. Its like an all day thing for departing missionaries, but I do know we get breaks and somebody said we're encouraged to email or write home during these breaks, and then that moves our Pday to saturday. So I can write home 3 days in a row! To my dismay, the bookstore won't be having a black friday sale at 3 am tomorrow, and they'll actually be closed the whole day, so thats a bummer. Sunday is pretty normal, except we'll be having a departure devotional, which I hear is just pres. Brown Calling out all of the missions and you stand up when he calls your mission, and then he talks for a bit. Monday will be last day of classes, and than I leave on tuesday. The word is that you can call home from the airport and they sell 3 hour phone cards for 5 dollars in the bookstore, so we'll see about it. Love you bunches, I really appreciate and miss everyone in our family today. Thats what I'm thankful for, Mom Dad Heather, Brian, Jordan, Justin, and Megan.
Love you bunches!
Friday, November 18, 2011
Nice! I enjoy your letters and hearing from home!
Well this has been a wonderful week! I guess I'll start with last PDAY. Our district was heading to the temple, and Elder hundley, Elder Baker, Elder Shamanis, and I were a little bit late. When we got down into the basement where they rent clothes to the elders we saw a sign that said they needed help in the laundry that day, so instead of doing a session, we volunteered in the laundry! It was an awesome experience, I got to learn how they fold those socks and it was really fun! The good news with our investigators is that We finished teaching the plan of salvation to Natalia (Hermana Self) and we committed her to baptism!!! I love the opportunities we have to teach our teachers as investigators. I don't remember if I told you how they do it, but the teachers will take on a role of one of their previous investigators and we teach them the lessons! It rained a bit on saturday last week and its looking as if we're going to get some more today and tomorrow and possibly some snow, so we'll see if it happens! On sunday we got new zone leaders because the district above us was leaving on monday. Elder Farrel and Elder Brown in our district are the new zone leaders. Elder Farrel is from Preston Idaho and Elder Brown is from somewhere in utah. It was pretty crazy! The zone above us is gone and in less then 2 weeks we will be leaving too!!! Our fireside was about tithing, apparently it is a leading factor in people going inactive after baptism. If the missionaries don't teach tithing effectively, the converts won't get a firm testimony in it because they can't pay tithing until after baptism, and its sometimes hard for missionaries to teach it when they don't have a firm testimony of why it is important, because they haven't paid tithing on their mission, so Its important for us to study and pray about the law of tithe to learn to teach it effectively.
Monday, we committed Natalia to be baptized on November 30th, and she accepted so it was pretty much an awesome day. Even teaching the gospel to fake investigators is really rewarding!
Tuesday was awesome! Elder Tad Callister of the presidency of the seventy spoke to us about The apostasy
He said it is just as important to teach as the restoration, because without the apostasy, there would be no need for the restoration! I hadn't ever thought about it that way before.
anyway, he said the 10 evidences of the great apostasy are:
1. Apostles are killed. The apostles were critical to keep the doctrine pure, the church went from being led by revelation to being led by reason.
2. Scriptures foretold of it, in Amos 8:11, 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 etc.
3. The Bible ends. The epistles were written to correct errors, and the bible ended in 100 AD, would the church really be perfect by then?
4. Dramatic loss of miracles and gifts of the spirit
5. Teachings of christ were lost
Eternal Marriage 1 peter 3:7
Nature of god, etc.
"Everything is now so entangled with these decrees that we dare not hope to call the world back to true christianity." -Erasmus
6. Ordinances altered or changed
Isaiah 24:5 Mark 10:16
Baptism by immersion etc.
7. Manner of Prayers
The enemy brakes the line of communication when attacking
No longer prayed in the name of Jesus Christ, started praying to saints
8. Scriptures only for clergy
"If the church of Jesus Christ had continued would they have taken the scriptures away from the people or made efforts to make the scriptures available to as many people as possible?"
9. Church no longer bore the name of Christ.
Apparently no church claimed that name before the 19th century
"I pray you leave my name alone and call yourselves not lutherans but Christians." -Martin Luther
10. No priesthood,
no line of authority, people with out authority ordained bishops.
And then he compared the church to a plane that had an engine caught on fire, the pilot isn't going to dive straight for the earth, the pilot is going to land as steadily and slowly as possible to ensure a safe landing, so it was with The Church of Jesus Christ, our Heavenly Father waited and prepared for the safest time to bring his church back so that it would never apostasize again!
on wednesday we got a new district in our zone, apparently we got a ton of missionaries that day because were not getting any next week because of Thanksgiving. So its been pretty crowded. We had our last thursday night lights soccer game! Our zone has a tradition of playing soccer every thursday night for gym time and its a lot of fun. We won't be having it next week because of the Thanksgiving devotional and thats our last thursday in the MTC!
I got my travel plans yesterday! I can call next week to tell more, but I'll be flying from salt lake to pasco on the morning of November 29th and apparently we can also call from the airport. We'll see!
Well thats about it!
Friday, November 11, 2011
Well Its good to finally get your emails! haha and it took quite some time to read them all. Can I wait til like december 7th to tell you what I want for christmas? I'll have a better idea once I've been out in the field for a bit. I'm super excited for that quilt!!!! That'll be really nice to have. Glad to hear all is well at home!
Well its been a good week in the MTC! Its been kind of different, last week it was pretty bleak and stormy and we got a small amount of snow but this week has been clear and sunny. On sunday we woke up to a little bit of snow that actually stuck to the ground but it really wasn't much and it melted by noon. Daylight savings time started last weekend!!! We got to sleep for 9 hours instead of 8 that night! That was nice, I've never experienced that before. Well we had Mission conference because it was fast sunday, and some people from the mtc presidency spoke. I was going to go to choir that day but I guess they don't have choir on fast day. Its been a good week!
We've been teaching our "investigators" which are our two teachers acting like somebody that they taught on their missions. With Natalia, (Hermana Self) we taught the first half of lesson 2, the plan of salvation, and we were going to commit her to get baptized but during the lesson we found out that her marriage was less than happy, so instead I committed her to pray, read the scriptures, and go to church with her family, and the gospel would bless her family. She agreed to "come to church with us". Enrico, (Hermano Burnham) is a little behind, we finished lesson 1 with him and commited him to read and pray about the Book of Mormon.
Aside from that, I'm past my halfway mark! Que Loco! Time is really flying by haha Next week our oldest district will be leaving so we will be the oldest district after that. So on sunday we should be finding out who the new zone leaders are. Whoever gets called as zone leaders, they've got some big shoes to fill! Elder Cummins and Millerberg were the best! I mean how many zone leaders will tuck you in at night??? Anyway, I'll miss those guys. They're all great.
I'm really pushing through Predicad Mi Evangelio. (Preach My Gospel) I have about 3 chapters left, Its basically the best book ever. Read it. Even if you're not going on a mission, the how to study chapter is great! Also the Book of Mormon and How to develop christlike attributes. Anyway I love preach my gospel so much.
Monday, November 7, 2011
Friday, November 4, 2011
Hey! How is it going!!!! Brian's birthday is coming up! I printed some pictures so I'll send them in the mail soon.
Another Great week at the MTC! We are now teaching 2 investigators in spanish and we have 3-4 lessons a week. The program is really inspired here, I can just about teach the whole first lesson in spanish now, so I'm going to work on lesson 2, el plan de salvacion this week. Our tuesday night devotional was by W. Craig Zwick, it was funny because word got out that President Monson gave the BYU devotional that morning so everyone was hoping he'd come by the MTC and talk to us also, so lots of people came early and were disappointed to have another from the presidency of the seventy. I like Zwick though, I think that was my first time hearing him speak but I remember seeing him on the General Authority page of the Ensign all these years. His wife talked about the spirit and something that stuck out to me was she said "Seek the companionship of the spirit, it is Vital! Don't get too preoccupied with mission rules or learning the language and lose focus on being spiritual" Its so true! Its important to learn spanish if you're going to a spanish speaking mission, but your vast spanish vocabulary isn't going to convert, the spirit is! I haven't gotten much mail from friends haha thats okay, I don't miss them either!!!
Well I hope all is well at home, I'm doing great out here! Thanks so much for the package!!! I love the fudge and cookies and the socks are awesome and I'm wearing my favorite green shirt in the laundry room even as I type this! LOVE YOU BYE!