Monday, September 26, 2016

Enjoy Everyday of Life

Dear Family & Friends:

This week was great!  

9/20 Tuesday 
Today's highlight was a lesson with Sheryl. Sheryl lives with some members and was kinda of in the “one more lesson and probably drop her,” because she wasn't showing any interest. You could say it was the “do or die” lesson! We just simply did a Book of Mormon read with her. We had been praying for her lots and had been praying for the Spirit to touch her! Oh how our prayers were answered. We had an amazing lesson she opened up and told us her concern on baptism, which is, disappointing her parents who raised her Catholic. She wants us to come back more often! I feel she with be baptized here in the near future!

9/21 Wednesday 
Everything went right today except for we found out that Jerry our investigator didn't want us to come back! Welcome to missionary work! I walked away sick from his doorstep because I know that he could make his life so much better and have so much more joy! The gospel is true and he is turning from truth... it is rough to see that. But as we were walking away we saw another man outside his home and we talked to him for over an hour! We talked about all sorts of things, but the majority was the Plan of Salvation! His wife passed 8 months ago and he is still struggling with that. He is an amazing guy and wants us to return! Miracles happen every day. Other than that we had two lessons with recent converts and we had a lesson with a man whose friend saw us in the front yard and she stopped by to say hi to Victor (the man we were teaching), long story short, we got a life story of 27 years of drugs and living in the streets. In the nicest way possible... she is crazy. After that we finished the lesson and went to a couple more appointments that went well! It was a great day!

9/22 Thursday 
Coming off a great day yesterday we were hopeful for another but... we had to do weekly planning, which takes forever and a day, so we didn't have much time to teach. We went and saw the Walker’s. It was great to see them and our suits were all tailored. She is an amazing lady but doesn't like coming to church for some reason. She is constantly doing missionary work haha.

9/23 Friday 
Another great and busy day! We got to see Sheryl again! We discussed her concerns, but Sister Boocher had already discussed it! She told her how many blessings will come if she joins the church. It was another great lesson. We also got to see Letecia and Toya and they are doing great. Tomorrow we have to pass them off to the El Camino elders. 

9/24 Saturday 
Today we did service for Diane and Miley. It went well and they wanted to feed us, so we went and taught a pass off lesson to Letecia. It went well and they said they wanted me to baptize them! It was sad to pass them off. We went back to Diane's and I had the best meal yet!! She is from Hawaii and they cook a lot of food! She wants us to come on Thanksgiving! Tonight, we got our transfer call. Elder Renel is going to the Red Rock Zone to be a zone leader. I am staying in Charleston and getting Elder Barton. 

9/25 Sunday 
Today we went so Elder Renel could say goodbye to our investigators. It is hard to see Elder Renel go because I liked him!

The most spiritual thing that happened this week was when our investigator Toya shared with us an experience that happened when she was taking the missionary discussions the first time. Her son was 13 months old and had been diagnosed with Severe Narcolepsy. He would just pass out every couple of minutes. The missionaries offered to give him a blessing. They gave him a blessing and he hasn't had a hint of Narcolepsy since that time and it was two years ago! The priesthood has been restored and it is a blessing that is often taken for granted! 

The church is true! And we need to enjoy everyday of life! Joseph B Wirthlin said, "Come what may and love it"

Elder Call

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

When in Doubt

Dear Family and Friends:

This week was a slow week. Things just didn't go our way. We still had quite a few lessons but things just fell through right and left. We had a lot of fun activities this week and more great missionary experiences! Unfortunately, I don't have any funny stories.

9/12 Monday
Today we went ice skating.... I am a pro. I only went down a few times! It was super funny to see everyone fail! It was so hard to not fall down. One of the new elders from Mexico was clinging to the edge of the rink. I was talking to him and in his broken English asked why his foot was cramping. haha I thought it was funny because my foot was doing the same thing! We went to the empty nesters FHE (Family Home Evening) at a member’s home. They had us play a game with them which you would roll some dice and if you rolled a “4” you would try to answer a question about the history in the “Forties.” They thought it was so much fun but it may have been the most boring game I have ever played.

9/13 Tuesday 
Today we meet with a lady who has a lot of things against the church! She is very friendly and fed us some food.......! Cream cheese and onion and rotten lettuce on really old white bread!! She made us an entire plate and expected them gone. I got two down and Elder Renel stopped at one, he wouldn't even try for two! I couldn't take another because I would put it in my mouth and wonder how in the world I was going to swallow! While we ate we tried to explain all of her misconception but I don't think we got anywhere. She is extremely friendly and she wants us to come back. Today we also saw John. He is struggling a lot because he has to go back to Portugal on the 28th of this month. I am afraid he won't continue in faith. he doesn't want to go back at all and is getting a little depressed. Hopefully he will continue to grow the testimony he has already. 

9/14 Wednesday
Today we are on exchanges. I am with Elder Hill from Alberta, Canada. He is great and we have a ton in common. We talked about hunting and fishing all day! Tonight we met with Letecia and her many children and Toya.  We taught the Plan of Salvation and invited them to baptism. They accepted and want to be baptized on October 29. We love their family so much. We also had a lesson with Lilly and she is headed to New York, so we only have one more lesson with her for a while. I hope when she gets back she will remember everything we have taught her!

9/15 Thursday
Today we got to do service at the Trinity Church with a food drive they have each week. It helps a lot of people out.  Except, there was a lady going through the line with an iPhone 6 in her hand... haha some people need it more than others. We did a lot of finding and didn't get any solid people.

9/16 Friday
Today was a slow day. We had a lesson with Brian and that went well! He is fine being a lifelong investigator and I think that is what he will be. He is impossible to figure out! Nothing else really happened.

9/17 Saturday
Strike, strike, strike, strike, strike, and strike. NOBODY WAS HOME. We tried a lot of our investigators and none of them were home. This has been an extremely slow few days for our work. Tonight was the All American Stake Picnic. It was a lot of fun and there were a ton of people. It was great to be able to greet and welcome everyone that was there. They figured that there were near 2500 people. The elders had to show their dominance over each other on the bell ringer. (The sledge hammer thing). One elder couldn't do it very good and got beat by a 12-year-old.... there were a ton of people laughing every time he swung I felt pretty bad for him. The North Dakota, Canadian, and Wyoming elders showed that their mountain man skills were useful.

9/18 Sunday
Today proved to be just as tough as the rest of the week. We only had a couple people at church and all of our lessons fell through. We are glad to have a fresh start next week and be able to work hard so we don't have as slow of a week. Today we were done with church and Elder Renel got the prompting to visit an apartment that the investigator had left. We meet the lady that had moved in. She used to be LDS but married a guy that convinced her to not believe. I told her that when doubts come it is when we are not reading and praying daily. I told her that those doubts give Satan the room he needs to make you disregard all the spiritual experiences and testimony strengthening events that happened in your life. And he makes those doubts beliefs against the church. She accepted a Book of Mormon and wants to read it again. We had a lesson with Lilly and she heads out for New York on Tuesday she asked for a blessing because she doesn't want the plane to crash and she doesn't want to forget the things we have taught her. She is so awesome!

Walking into the doors of Walmart there was a very upset man and he chucked his cup of water and it got us all wet! Haha the Walmart greeter was mad haha. It was funny! I got the first mission haircut and it just keeps showing how bald I am getting... I am going bald fast! I don't have a “four” head anymore it is a “six” head- measured by fingers.... D & C 9:14 (Stand fast in the work wherewith I have called you, and a hair of your head shall not be lost, and you shall be lifted up at the last day. Amen.)

My testimony this week is about doubts. In high school I had some doubts about the church. Each time I had doubts it was because I was not reading the scriptures and praying daily. I meet a lot of people that used to be Mormons and I know that when they fell away they were not reading and praying. If you ever doubt go to the source and read. Satan works with the doubts and turns them to make them beliefs. The Book of Mormon is true. Read it every day and pray. God loves us more than we know.

Love you all and hope you have a great week!
-Elder Call

Love the Members!

During the week of September 12 to September 19, pictures were received by members that had Elder Call and Elder Renel in their home for dinner.  Here are the pictures we received.

Monday, September 12, 2016

An Important Message

Dear Family and Friends:

Here is another week’s report:

9/6 Tuesday
Today we went to lunch with Brother Krecsman.  He is the high councilman over missionary work. He is great. He is very worried about some elders in his home ward, because the lesson count has gone from 30 to 4... Big difference. We went to lunch to give correction and it was awkward for me haha. Elder Renel got mad at them because while we were talking to them one was watching TV in the restaurant. I hope that they are working as hard as they can, because we have an important message to share.

9/7 Wednesday
Today nothing exciting happened. We had a lesson with Sheryl, which went really well we taught the Book of Mormon lesson.  She is excited to read it. The house she lives has lots of animals that are not cleaned up after them... I didn't know I was kind of a germ freak... She is great and progressing very slowly.  She and the people in the house have lots of health problems and are always sick.  Later that day a lady called to us "hey Mormon boys." We went and talked to her and she said she knew some about the Mormons and doesn't like the Mormon bible. She said to come back and talk to her. She said she wanted us to come and not another set of missionaries because we were good looking and she needed eye candy... She is an older lady and that was kinda weird.

9/8 Thursday
Tonight we had a lesson/visit with a less active couple (the Walker’s) that have fished Flaming Gorge and love old cars. They love me and Elder Renel and would talk to us for hours if they could. They talk to me about all of this old car stuff and I think it is interesting, but it all goes right over my head, but I pretend like I know what they are talking about and Elder Renel doesn't even try to act interested.  haha. Sister Walker is a professional seamstress of like 30 years, so she takes care of all of our sewing needs. She is tailoring my suit this week. They are great, but don't want to come to church.  I don't know why.

9/9 Friday
Today I was on an exchange with Elder Alison. He is from the Philippines and he is 26. He has been out for 16 months. We got along great and he actually thought my sarcasm was funny. We did a lot of
street contacting and talking with people. We were invited to go speak to a man’s church congregation that is in California but we had to tell it was a little far to go on a pedal bike.... We really didn't tell him that but we should have. We were supposed to have a lesson with Tina but she wasn't feeling well so it was canceled.

9/10 Saturday
Today was one of those days where mission life is crazy good. We decided to go on pedal bikes and as we were stopped at an intersection three people just came up to us and wanted to talk with us. The first lady I started to teach the Restoration to, while Elder Renel took a phone number of a lady and her daughter who wanted us to teach them and then Elder Renel finished writing and started to explain to a lady why we were so happy. She didn't understand why in this world we could be smiling and saying hi to everyone. She wanted to pray with us so we prayed together on the busiest and loudest intersection in our area haha. Right after all of that we were pedaling past a park and a man waved us over and told us he wanted to go to church. After we were done with him, we went to see Diane Miley and Leanna. Diane was the only one there and she wasn't feeling good so we gave her a blessing. We then talked to her about all sorts of things but mostly about God’s love. The spirit was definitely present in the room and it was a great meeting. Brother Porcaro came out with us tonight and we went and saw Lilly. She is recovering from shingles and was a little on the grouchy side, which probably wasn't the best day to talk about stopping the coffee drinking! She told us that she had down to one cup of coffee a day.... Which is great but she showed us the cup she uses and it is the largest mug I have ever seen haha. She told us that when we tell her to stop doing things it makes her want to do them, so we have to be very careful with our words. After the whole lesson of trying to get her to set a goal to cut down the drinking more (which she didn't want to do) she mentioned about not being able to drink hot chocolate. We told her she can drink hot chocolate and she said that she would just stop the coffee and drink hot chocolate. She asked if it is ok if she puts whipping cream on it! Lilly is so funny I could tell a ton of stories about her. The other day she was telling how she was watching a movie and it was talking about this storm that was going to hit New York. It scared her and she called her daughter who lives in New York to warn her about this storm. As she was talking to her daughter her daughter told her there was no storm on its way and she must be mistaken... Lilly then realized she had put in a movie and it was fake! Haha it was funny.  She told us how embarrassed she was!

9/11 Sunday
We had four people at church. It was good to get some people that usually don't come to come. We played a prank on an elder in our apartment. He falls asleep really fast and we noticed that he only had one blanket so we turned the AC to 50 degrees and put the fan on him. He woke up and like was shivering and trying to get warm in his blanket.  It was so funny hahaha.

The mission is great and fun. Hope you all have a good week.

Love you all!!!
Stereotypical Mormon Missionaries

 The ultimate power gap

Monday, September 5, 2016

Feeling His Love Daily

Dear Family & Friends:

Here are my journal entries for the week.  

8/29 Monday 
Today was a pretty boring day. We studied and shopped and cleaned the car then played basketball for a little while. We had dinner again with the McKnights and John and then DLC and that is it.
8/30 Tuesday 
Today we had district meeting and the topic was teaching/ feeling the spirit. Elder Renel did a wonderful job in the training. After that, we went tracting in a sketchy part of town. Not two minutes out of the car, a drunk lady called us over and talked our ear off about everything under the Las Vegas sun. She tried to give us hugs and told us about when she stole stuff from people and her drug life. She told us not to talk to anyone in the area because we couldn’t trust anyone but her. Anyway, she was a little on the wasted side, but it kept the day interesting. We contacted a referral that a lot of the members in the ward told us about. The man and his wife have three kids who live in the same neighborhood and have families of their own. They are devout Catholics, but very nice. We asked him straight up if he would like to hear about the restoration. We taught him and it went really well, so hopefully he will read and pray like he said he would! 
8/31 Wednesday 
Today was great! We had lots of success today! We talked with one of our potentials today, Jerry that we met before. He completely changed his attitude towards us! He did not read any of the stuff we asked him to because he had a crazy few days. There are lots of homes that are split for people to rent. Some members in a different ward referred one of the people that lived in the basement of Jerry’s house to us, but she had a heart attack on Saturday and passed away before we could go meet with her. Jerry, our investigator, was having a crazy few days, but he said that he was going to read this week. We asked him to hand a plan of salvation pamphlet to the husband of the lady that died. He said he would, but he wanted to read it himself. We told him we could give him another one. Haha. We went on splits this evening and taught a lot of lessons. I had a girl, Miley, tell me she wanted to get baptized, and asked me what she needs to do to get baptized. That was super exciting. Lilly, the 85-year-old lady that we are teaching, said she would like to get baptized. She said that she wasn't sure when she would be ready, that it might be tomorrow, next week, or in a few months. Prayers in her behalf have been answered because she could not remember anything we would teach, so we have prayed for her remembrance of what we teach. Our prayers have been answered!! 
9/1 Thursday 
Today was my first zone conference. There were many inspired words of council. We were told to not use the cars as much, which will make ourselves more visible, and to make our prayers more meaningful. We put it to practice tonight and we met a lot of new people and were very blessed! We met a very old man who had throat cancer. He had a hole in his throat, so it was very hard for him to talk. He didn't like Mormons, told us we were in a cult, that we needed to worship Jesus Christ and to stop having lots of wives.... Haha. I love people that believe they know everything about the Mormon Church! He would not let us talk, so we had to just share a scripture, testify of Christ, and leave. I won't lie, it made me a little mad when he was just going off on us about being brainwashed... I still have work to do on being more Christlike. We can see the blessings that come by following President Walker's council already. 
9/2 Friday 
Today we went all day on bikes. I really like biking because it makes the day a lot more fun. Tonight, as we were locking up our bikes so we could go tracting, John, the man that was baptized two weeks ago, saw us, and we were able to say hi. He was so excited to see us. He told us that he has to leave the United States in two weeks because he is not a citizen. We hadn't seen him since his baptism, so it was a blessing. After dinner, we had the opportunity to meet a guy in his twenties who is autistic. He told us about how he has done some things in his life that have made him feel really guilty, and he felt that God was mad at him. It was very helpful to know how to help him, thanks to Special Olympics! Elder Renel had no idea what to do! In the end, we gave him some hope and made him feel way better. It was a great experience. We started exchanges tonight, and I am with Elder Kauer for a day. 
9/3 Saturday
I knocked a lot of doors today with Elder Kauer on the letter streets of Vegas... Haha. It was a lot fun, but a little sketchy! We had one lesson with one of their referrals, which went really well. They don't have many investigators, so we did a lot of contacting. Other than that, it wasn't a very exciting day. I scared Elder Kauer when I saw a cat in the dark. I was like, "Oh there is a mountain lion,” and then I made a noise, and it made him jump haha....
9/4 Sunday 
We had three member attend church today, which was great. Lilly was not able to come to church because she got shingles, so we went and gave her a blessing. Hopefully, she will heal quickly. We have a lot of investigators, but several of them have been going to church for years and just won't get baptized. I have no idea what to do to help them. We taught, and had a lesson today with Brian and challenged him to text a question or scripture a day to get him studying the scriptures more deeply. He has been investigating for 4 years. He said he would do that, so hopefully it helps. We had a lesson with a man who is married to a member and has been going to church for an extremely long time. He considers himself a member but doesn't want to get baptized. His wife goes to the temple every week! We did have a way good lesson with him though, and then they tried giving us all the food in their house! I love the members in Vegas! 
9/5 Monday
Today we went shopping at BCF. This man stopped us to bible bash, and then told us he was one of the hunters that is stated in Romans, and his job was to hunt and kill people spiritually if they were wrong in belief. Elder Renel talked to him for a while, but it wasn't worth it, so he ended the conversation. The wife filmed it all, so if we go viral, I may be famous. Hopefully, I will be a YouTube legend. Haha. He was a jerk to everyone he came in contact with. In the checkout, he was one of the rudest people I have ever met. I don't care what religion you are, if you are building people up, you are a good person. If you tear people down then....
I got Aunt Maria and Uncle Daryll's address, but I need their email so I can thank them for all the stuff they gave me! I still need Rudy’s.  I get served such a variety of food here it is insane. Island food, Korean, Peruvian.... The list goes on and on.  My favorite was probably the Korean food! 

I see miracles every day and feel His love every day. It makes me so mad when people tell me how wrong our religion is because they have never felt the things I have felt, and they don't see the miracles that I see. 
Love you lots!
Elder Call