Thursday, August 27, 2015

G's Gangsters

August 24, 2015

Tuesday morning we woke up and it was really rough to get up because
we both were so exhausted. We both had issues and fears and concerns
about the black mold that was previously found in our apartment. After that
we had a personal study while we pack up my things and we called
Sister Sopp saying that we could go in a moments notice. That was
crazy. There is a lot of issues and shenanigans going on with our
apartment because of the black mold incident and we have received
guidance to think that we feel that we should move out of that
apartment into another apartment or complex or figure out a way to
permanently destroy the black mold. We met with the McNamara family
and from there we then help a Sister Deels put in flooring. We put in
linoleum with the help of Sister Deels’ daughter whom was a little too friendly with us missionaries and it was interesting to see what she tried.

Elder Johnson and I removed sister Deel's old and not so clean
Kitchen devices such as the cabinets the oven and stove and the
refrigerator  and bugs and put down the long linoleum and then afterwards put
everything back. 

There was a ruckus after that we might be back to the McNamara's place had dinner there taught a lesson about the importance of the temples. There was also a lot of pizza and ice cream we heard many awesome stories from Sister McNamara. 

There is also a person that we stop by, Dwayne, who had previously met with the
missionaries a year ago but he had moved from his apartment to an
actual home and now he is seeking to have his daughter christened and
hopefully will hopefully be interested in hearing the message of
Jesus Christ that we share. We are now planning at the church building
and actually finished planting and my companion is recording on his
device as I'm recording on mine and he has some pretty funny stuff
going on with the voice.

Wednesday we woke up, got ready and did the "morning routine" and from
there we had personal study and discussed in comp study the importance
of doctrine. We cleaned to make sure our apartment was clean so we can directly
be influenced by the Holy Ghost without distractions. We then went to
the church building and did area book work and then had lunch over
there. We visited Regina and Gary, Regina had the flu so we
just talked with her outside and she said she was reading the Book of
Mormon and comparing passages she could relate to from the bible. Gary
doesn’t  live at the address we tried so we went finding on a street
nearby and didn't really talk to anyone that much because no matter
who answered the door (if anyone) they said we were wasting our time
with them. There were a few people who said thank you and a few who
got extremely mad at us. Well other then that my Companion had a hardcore
über bloody nose that popped outa no(se)where... Get it, “nose” but
“nowhere”.   We pet a horse (pretty sure it was a thoroughbred) and I
also found that my comp and I have a lot in common! We went to the
library for time and basically I was on the gospel library
application getting videos that we can use for street contacting. We
had dinner and headed to a lesson.

We had exchanges today it being Thursday. We also had Max drive us to
the Boscabell  building for our exchange and district revelatory
experience (meeting). The reason I call it that was because I learned a lot
about being able to be more obedient and how to improve working with
members and be more diligent. I gave the training on diligence and
Sister Prash gave a training on obedience. We had the zone leaders (Elder Pese and Elder Oler) with us and they helped us spiritually plan
for this upcoming month and they were surprised that we had already
spiritually created a vision and goals and plans to work with the
members and be able to be more purposeful missionaries (as I like to
think of it) and be able to have goals to work toward.

On the exchange I went on today I went to the Heartwood area with Elder Paskett and he taught me about being more "focused on where we go and not waste time" because I walked slower and thought about things as I walked and he thought at a faster walking pace then I sped up so he helped us get to where we were going. We went finding in an apartment complex and were (sadly) not able to teach any official lessons, we received many potential invitations back and we even found a former investigator who said we
could come back. I also learned the importance of proselyting at a door instead of finding at a door. That was awesome to learn and gain more of an understanding of.

When we went to a member's house for dinner he asked us to pick it up for him so we had popusa and ordered it in a ghetto Guatemalan food joint. We brought it back and he told us stories of his life as we were eating and we then talked about the importance of the gospel of Jesus Christ. After we went finding and visited one or two members for "power visits" then went to a street called Old Forge. Some crazy stuff apparently happens there. Anyway we
were there to find people to teach and visit potential investigators.
We then went finding a street over and after a while we saw it was
going to dump on us some heavy rain so we booked it back to the car
then went to visit some more people. The member that had us for dinner
called us for help and we helped him out. He then gave us chocolate
cake! That was crazy and kinda nice and made me feel good. We then
went to check up on some more people and when it started raining it
was very close to 9 (like 8:50) and it took a while to get back to our
apartment so we headed back to our nightly plan.

I woke up from exchange, cooked macaroni, got ready for a personal study,
had personal study, had a comp study, left the house, visited potentials,
and went to the library print off some stuff that was the interview
questionnaire. Then we went to church building found out that other elders
would not be there when we expected so went back to Wawa and got food
and I got a panini while Elder Paskett got the pizza thing.   Elder
Langford, Elder Johnson and I took a lot of photos and had some good
conversations and Elder Paskett was quite quiet and angry at all of
us. it was quite funny and we kind of expected that. We had conversations
and continued to eat lunch.  We have had many many transfers and exchanges and we want to go do things. President told that being diligent and a
purposeful missionary was key to having a worthwhile mission where I
grow and develop.  We had a “missionary jeopardy jam” about a lot of
information on the mission work with Sister Wilson. We also discussed
the importance of being more consecrated in the mission work. There
are many things I am seeing that are important.  I discussed with my companion what higher laws may be for and different examples.

Saturday a lot happened (mostly all was in small miracles) and the
first was with teaching a man we met on Thursday. a man named Dwayne.
He was someone (on Thursday) we literally ran into at 8:50pm because
we felt it was time to head in but it wasn't 9o'clock (our going home time) yet so Elder
Johnson drove and turned into a driveway. This man happened to be someone whom missionaries taught previously a year ago who was interested in
discussing Jesus Christ with us but since it was so late he asked us
to come by Saturday morning around 11am, and we did and we had a
lesson which was super powerful and the spirit testified this was
important to Dwayne.  Earlier that day Elder Johnson and I practiced
teaching and the practice was a wreck... But we felt like because we
practiced beforehand the lesson had determination of having the
spirit testify of truth that was more directed.

After we weekly planned for much of the day, there was another miracle from a lady named Katelyn. She was someone that we and the previous missionaries had been trying to get in contact with for a long time, and we felt like right before
the time we had the dinner we had scheduled (with ourselves only) we
stopped by and Katelyn let us in and her husband gave us some ribs to
eat! Katelyn is very stressed taking care of a 2yr old kid. We had a
really good lesson with her and had her seek peace. After we went to
the Saturday night of adult Stake Conference and guess who I saw....
My trainer! Elder Hopkins, I have so much respect and love that bro
and I am glad that he was my missionary companion in the field. We
talked for a bit and a member that we both knew offered to take us to
dinner, so heck yeah! It was awesome, to and from the stake conference
we had a ride and that was another miracle because every single person
we contacted from 11am-4pm said they couldn't and it started at 6...
Miracle we got over there. Good thing too because much revelation was

Woke up and had personal study. My companionship study was rushing over
to the church building to be able to make it with the Miller family
over to Stake Conference at another building. At Stake Conference
we heard from the temple president and the temple president's wife as
well as Elder Perkins of the Quorum of the Seventy and two youth speakers
from the Stake,  one who recently received their mission call to go to
Brazil and the other a young sister talking about not knowing
everything but being able to grow in faith in Jesus Christ.

I saw Elder Walker, a former companion of mine and we connected and said hello again. You are still really awesome and funny! After going home and having
lunch and I cooked pasta for lunch then did area bookwork. After
which we went to Regina and Tori and Regina was not home but Tori was
and was unable to talk at the moment. We set up another time where we
can be able to come back. After we headed to Colonial Beach and then
headed to the McNamara family for dinner.

In Colonial Beach, we talked to 7 or eight different people about the gospel
of Jesus Christ and the importance of reading the Book of Mormon to
find the connections going on in the world today and in each one of our lives. I realize that being able to testify as I most important tool and it is important for others to now that we know through prayer are Heavenly Father will reveal all things of truth important for ourselves to receive that peace that we always seek.

A family's Deloren model collection 
At dinner, we had a good discussion with the McNamara family about temple work in the importance of connecting each others generations. After dinner we had a list of members that we are going to visit and one of the people who we
visited did not live there any more but the man who did live in the house
had a horrible experience where his kids got taken away early by his ex
wife after he had gotten into a car accident being hit by a drunk driver and
his brand-new car was wrecked so he was renting a minivan.   As we are talking
with him, he was unpacking all of the things that looked like he was
going to take his kids camping and he was very sad. We visited a
lot more people and most of them were not home or did not live there
anymore and some people we stoped by on the street and discussed the
gospel with them. Today was about "sifting the wheat from
the tares"

as Elder Johnson put it, and we are going through many trials
at the moment when finding a new investigators. We are able to meet
one of two new potentials that were no longer interested.

 Coming back home we decided to come to the church building and
nightly plan for tomorrow are preparation day and all day long we have
been listening to some good music which were church hymns.

Elder Day


companion and I after planning. A member's model Deloreans

New area, day by day

August 17, 2015

WEEKLY EMAIL REVIEW. Monday. Elders PDay. I visited Brooks then took a picture and came back. Then I had dinner with Carol's and they gave me a lot of pasta- a lot of pasta! Then visited Bonnie then the Sanders then visited the Chandler's then visited Welches then went home and slept.

Woke up at 6:30. Changing areas. At 7:10am  Ian took us all the way down to transfers. Dropped off Elder Taylor. Then we went to short pump mall. It was closed so we played chess. I barely won by accident. After we went to Chicken Fiesta for lunch. Afterwards we went to transfer meeting. Met my new awesome companion. Then we were stuck in traffic and I went to Five Guys. I got a ride from members from previous area to King George  (that’s a city) where I am now.

Elder Johnson is my new companion. Between transfer meeting and actually getting on the road it was two hours. We didn't have much to do but sit around and talk and see how my new companion is. We got all my stuff unpacked and then dropped Toby off. Then we came to King George  Ward building. Also we went to Burger King and got a shake. Afterwards, we did area book work and then had stuff going on where we at night we planned for our week. My companion filmed me as I'm doing this. It is quite interesting. This will be a fun transfer. I audibly say this so it types faster. Go voice type!

Wednesday, we woke up and jogged for the first time (for me) since the Glen Allen, my first area. Took a nap on the couch in the morning when we had to be in the apartment and we just had a good personal study. Comp study we had the repairman come in to fix our wall in our apartment and we talked with Juan about the importance of family and he totally agrees. He finds God in nature and sees that the degradation of the family causes the collapse of society.

After we checked up on some potential investigators and taught a family from Florida who was sitting outside. After we went to the library and had time then to the post office to get the boxes that I want to ship home because I have a “crapton” of stuff. After lunch we went to visit Mary. After we gave a blessing to a jdubbs (Jehovahs Witness) lady, we chatted with Mary. Went to Reggie's place and saw the McNamara household and they are super cool. We are excited to see more opportunities to help out. We then had dinner but our dinner was cut short by being able to teach Sierra at the library. We basically gave her a copy of preach my gospel then asked if next time we come by that she teach us (instead of us teaching her), she likes to talk a lot and it's kind of hard for me to fully listen for that long. Talked to a referral then went to the Edneys place then helped Sister Simpson move in with some members of the ward. Then we went to the building to sync and plan then we were done.

Woke up pretty much every hour on the hour last night.... Had personal and comp study then had part 1 of weekly planning, part two was after lunch at the ward building. We tried contacting a contact after to take a break but she wasn't home so we discussed religion with a lady who loves helping people out. We then went tracking and tried talking with a guy who wasn't too interested in what we talked about concerning prophets. Then we went back to weekly planning, had dinner at the apartment and discussed what we were going to do. There was an event at the ward building and we went so that I could meet some of the congregation and after we did some paperwork. Found out my companion likes the anime films I like but not the anime TV shows in general. He is a cool guy from Syracuse Utah and loves sports and Los videos juegos. This is already turning out to be a good transfer, we are helping each other get out of the wedges we have been stuck in and constantly progressing forward.

Woke up and jogged again, killer man!  Then we had personal study and comp study where we discussed smart goals for the transfer and spiritually planned and created an individual that we will find. We then went and I cleaned and organized while Elder Johnson did area book work. We then went and visited people and I met some new folks today. We had dinner at Cindy's place and we had to go quicker then we would have liked but we also taught a man named Brother Cousins. He is cool, we then had the leftover of dinner as dinner because our dinner was a lesson with Cindy. We then walked 2 miles to save on miles and visited an investigator named Regina. We then stopped by a potential and learned some new things about each other (elder Johnson and I) we helped build a 30 ton wood splitter and visited some members. Our miracle that happened today was we stopped by a guy's house right as he pulled up to his driveway and his name was Leroy, a minister from another church but he accepted the Book of Mormon and said his neighbors were LDS and we all were very good people. 

Saturday so we woke up and I lifted some weights and stretched and stuff. Companion can bench more then me in the mornings. So we basically went to the church building and stopped by for a baptism for an 8 yr. old girl, we had to go to visit someone. Turns out they asked us to come by the time they leave for work. So we decided to go tracking and found a pretty solid potential. We stopped by the McNamara dam and dropped off/picked up food and water. We them visited and went finding some more. We helped a lady named sister Deel and helped her and a friend of her daughter cut down a huge bush. We then went to do area book work and have dinner. After we went to see Bro Toller then to check up on some potentials. We met Marvin and he wants to come to church! We also met a nice lady who said we could stop by Thursday. Visited some people in a trailer park to find out that they were moving. We gave a Book of Mormon to their father and he was really great full for it and had a desire to read it. We then came to the building and nightly planned.

Sunday we went to church in the morning and had a meeting at 7:15 am because church started at 9am. I was able to meet some new people. We had a good lesson the second hour about how God asks us to work for us to be capable of growth and development. Third hour we talked about how to be a better father and husband. I learned some new things and even some things when looking back I had already learned from my father about seeing his example of being a good dad. After church the youth invited us to their meeting that they had and they discussed how to be able to invite people to events and how to better share the gospel. From the people so far I have seen and met in this ward, it is awesome and I fee like I will be able to learn and help. From there we went to the Strickland family household and discussed patience and reverence with them. We went to the Neimen household for dinner and had some über good food over there. Bro Neimen came out with us for visiting one or two people (funny story, when we knocked on a lady's door and she just got out of cleaning after work) then went and had a lesson and found the desire of an investigator and went after and stopped by a potential and a family who haven't come in a while. They are both doing well.

Elder Day

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Transfer Coming ...

August 10, 2015

This week has been pretty crazy.
Monday went as follows, most of our preparation day was spent with a
member playing board games and a member had us over for dinner and
during dinner we played a board game with him and his wife and their
cousins. After dinner we took the member's cousin to come visit some
people we had planned to see that night and he really appreciated it.
Heck the people we visited were awesome too!

Tuesday we had a district meeting and I learned more about the
cleansing powers of the atonement of Jesus Christ. That day was also
spent "area book hunting" where any person that the missionaries
previously had kept a record on, we stopped by their house. After we
went to the Hanna household and had dinner and a lesson. We became
really good friends with the father of Landon (the kid that was
baptized last Saturday) and guess what, his name is Jeremy too!!!! It
is super awesome and he is starting to become more interested in the

Wednesday we went to mutual and taught the teenagers importance of being able to be yourself and also do missionary work (something I have been
struggling with severely since I started my mission work actually).
There were a few other things that happened that day too but the main
one was the mutual (or youth group) activity.

Thursday we went and taught the people that we had set up appointments
with and was able to take Ian and Xander with us to different people
to have them help us teach.  We also taught at the Hanna household.

Friday and Saturday we did service and taught. 8:30pm on Saturday I
found out from my mission president that I would be leaving Staunton
and my companion will be training. When the transfer comes where he
starts training there will be 140 out of the 250 missionaries either
training a new missionary or they will be a new missionary. That's a
scary thought.... I hope they are all doing well. Sunday was goodbye
day, I said goodbyes to many people of the congregation and was able

to get in contact with a few people and have a lesson with them.
Goodbye day in Staunton