Monday, April 9, 2018

Letter 94 Awesome Week!

Hey Everyone!

It’s been another awesome week for us! We were able to find a lot of new investigators and we were able to set Mayra on date for May 19th! She is doing super awesome and she will definitely be able to make her date. We are so excited for all the progress this area is making! 

We also found Robert again, another investigator we had on date who disappeared so that was good. His phone broke so that’s why we couldn’t find him but we have an appointment tonight! Sofia is doing well too. We met with her on Friday and had a great lesson on the commandments. Her date isn’t until May 27th because it’s her birthday
and she wants it to be special although she could seriously be baptized in April if she wanted to! We are going to go to the temple visitor center with her in a few weeks which will be fun. That was pretty much it this week since Wednesday! 

Remember to go to church, pray, and read always! CPR keeps us spiritually alive so don’t forget church, prayer, reading. If you aren’t doing one of those things or even all three, I invite you to start doing them and you will be able
to feel the saviors love in your life and find answers to your revelation through the scriptures, and revelation through church attendance and I promise you it really does work. Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Letter 93 Temple!

Hey Everyone!

Wow what a week! Sorry for having p day later. First if all, congrats to my little brother Jared who received his mission call to Chicago Illinois! That’s so awesome! Well, this letter is gonna be a little long because this week was amazing!

General Conference was amazing! I’ve never quite had a conference like that! I felt so strongly during that conference though that President Nelson is a prophet of God and he is prepared to lead the church. I knew before that he was, but I especially felt that spiritual witness during this conference. So many crazy announcements, but I feel like they will help the church so much, especially combining the Elders and High Priests. And a temple in Russia! That makes me so excited! That will be a lot closer to Armenian and I’m super excited to hear more about it! I especially loved President Nelson’s talk about receiving personal revelation and I would encourage you all to look it over again or if you haven’t seen the conference yet, watch it! It answered a lot of my questions that I didn’t fully realize I had but I’m so glad he spoke on that because it really helped me out and strengthened my testimony.

Also, we went to the temple today! That was so amazing and I’m so grateful we have a temple nearby to visit. We have 7 new temples and I’m so grateful for them. When I get home I really want to take the challenge to visit the temple more often. We also taught Sofia this week and she got to watch conference which was good. She is on date for the End of May on her birthday. It’s been great to see so many people progress. I love this area so much! I hope you all take the time to ponder the messages from conference again! 

Monday, March 26, 2018

Letter 92 New Area

Hey Everyone!

It was an amazing week! Holy cow this area is amazing! I got transferred on on Tuesday and my area Sunland is right above Glendale so I got to see all the Armenian Elders at Zone breakfast which was super fun. There are tons of Armenians up her too so I get to practice speaking again. 

On Wednesday we brought Elder Stucki to the office to go home and that was crazy. He got picked up by his mom Thursday morning and they stopped by to see us and get his stuff that he left behind so that was fun. I can’t believe he is home now it’s so weird, he has been there my whole mission. 

My new companion Elder Pate and I got right to work though and this area just has tons of prepared people. They have some pretty cool people they have been working with and we will definitely see some baptisms in May. I haven’t met everybody, but we got to teach a lady named Mayra this week and she has tons of potential. We invited her to pray about a Baptismal date this week. She doesn’t want to be pushed, but at the same time she has been loving everything we teach and so we want her to think about baptism. 

We set another guy on date named Robert this week and so we are excited to keep meeting with him as well. Another great thing about this ward is the bishop is amazing! He has us over for dinner every week and is super missionary minded! He comes to each if our lessons with Mayra and he is just awesome! I don’t think I’ve had a better bishop so this is just awesome. I’m just so pumped it’s crazy. This is gonna be a fun way to end the mission! (Pictured: Elder Stucki and Elder Pate)
 Farewell to Elder Stucki!

Monday, March 19, 2018

Letter 91 Transferring to Sunland

Hey Everyone!

Ok so a ton happened this week. First, we got dropped by Valerie and Chloe unfortunately so that was a huge bummer. Same day too but it’s ok, seed planted and I think they will come around later. 

Second, Elder Bentley and a couple other past missionaries came and visited the mission and so we got to talk for a little bit. Elder Bentley was like one of my favorite missionaries to hang out with and we were together for like a year of the mission so that was super fun, I can’t believe he got home almost 6 months ago now. 

Third, we got our transfer calls. What in the world. So I thought I was gonna finish my mission here but I guess I was wrong. I’m really sad to leave this ward because I’ve loved this area so much, but I am excited to go to my new area which is surprisingly not Glendale. I will be going to Sunland and taking Elder Stucki’s place because he is going home. My new companion will be Elder Pate. I’m excited for it because Elder Hansen is going to be my zone leader in one of the Armenian areas with Elder Hathaway, one of my current zone leaders.

I can’t wait to go on exchanges with them in Glendale and also, they have the other Armenian Elders in an area as well so they have 2 Armenian areas again which is awesome. I’m super excited to see all the Armos again. Also, there are quite a few Armenians in Sunland and so I’m taking Elder Stucki’s spot to contact them and refer them down to the Armenian Elders which will be fun because I will get to use my language. 

Elder Boulette also got transferred. He is going to Alhambra and the Heritage ward is getting Sister missionaries. Yep we got Pinkwashed! It’s only a little bit shameful, haha, but I actually recommended they put Sisters here because this ward hasn’t had Sisters in like 20 years and there is a lot of potential. I think they will do a great job. Anyway, we don’t have transfers till tomorrow now so you can see a pic of my comp next week. I’m excited to finish strong in Sunland and can’t wait to start working there! Have a great week everyone!  
Dinner with the Walker family! 

 Elder Bentley -- back from the dead...
Our Zone

Monday, March 12, 2018

Letter 90 Rain!!

Hey Everyone!

This week it rained. A lot. California needed it but I didn’t need it. I remember when it rained a lot last year, running back and forth from the car between visits and referral contacting. I feel for all of the missionaries who biked during that time of year. When it rains pretty hard we usually walk and so on those days we don’t get a whole lot done because of how long it takes to get places and nobody is walking around in the rain either so we can’t street contact. However, in the middle of Saturday it started to pour. Luckily we just got where we need to be and so we parked our bikes and walked with our umbrellas the rest of the day. The ride back home though, that was an adventure. We don’t have rain guards on our bikes and so the water flicks up from the back tire and anyway, we just got wrecked, end of story. That was pretty much our adventure for the week. I’m glad to see the sky clear again.

Well we have still been doing tons of tracting and it’s actually going pretty good which is weird to me because normally tracting is like the least effective thing to do in my book, but not here clearly. We find lots of people to teach each week and they aren’t super solid but occasionally one of them is super awesome. For example, we met Chloe last week on exchanges with Elder Reimer. We shared a quick message and set up and appointment for next week and got her phone number. This is where most people flake is that return appointment, but we texted and reminded her and she was really excited to meet with us.

Chloe is 21 and so we will need to pass her off to the YSA sisters, but that was seriously one of the best lessons ever. She said her best friend is Mormon and so she was thinking about looking into it and then we talked to her and so she decided this was her chance. It was a great lesson and the spirit was really strong the whole time. She is so honest and truly questioning and has some pretty big and difficult concerns to deal with, but I think she has a lot of potential. She was even nervous about meeting with us again because she still felt like she wasn’t sure if this is the path she wanted to take, she was just kinda interested in checking it out. However, we think the Book of Mormon is what really made her decide that it would be ok to meet again. She isn’t sure about a lot of things right now, but I would very much rather teach someone as sincere as her and struggle through it than just baptize someone in a couple weeks who isn’t sincere at all. A lot of people in my first area would say they would be baptized but didn’t really care or didn’t really know, but Chloe is really wanting to search which makes her better than those others who just wanted to get baptized to say they did it.

Anyway, that was pretty much it for this week. Sorry this letter was kinda long! I know that the gospel is true and that we can find answers to our deepest questions and concerns by reading the Book of Mormon and I’m so grateful for that book. It has helped me through so many of my own struggles, trials, concerns, questions, you name it. It is always there when I need it and I’m so grateful for the Book of Mormon in my life. I hope and pray that all of you will take the time to read just a little bit each day. Even just a little bit can make a huge difference. Have a great week everyone!

Monday, March 5, 2018

Letter 89 Tracting

We had a great week of finding! We weren’t able to meet with the Aguilera family this week because they were sick, but hopefully next week we will. We spent a lot of time tracting, walking, and doing all sorts of other finding activities and it was really good! We were able to find and talk to some pretty cool people and so we hope to meet
with them again. Walking isn’t as effective here which is unfortunate. I guess there just isn’t as many people outside as Glendale but that’s okay. 

Overall we have pretty much just been putting in a lot of tracting time searching for those prepared for the gospel. We found a really cool lady named Mary this week and she shows a lot of potential and so we are excited to teach her especially. That’s pretty much it for this week, I hope you are all having a great week as well!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Letter 88 Markerit's Baptism!!

Hey Everyone!

This week was another good one and things have been improving a lot! We are still having some trouble setting some baptismal dates, but we have been successful in finding a lot more people. A lot of them our flaky because they were found tracting, but it does feel good to get out and about. We have been working super hard to find and so we have been trying to knock a lot of doors.

Normally I hate tracting, but the people in this area are actually pretty nice. We did meet a new part member family in the ward named the Aguilera’s. Richard is less active but wants to come back and his fiancé Valerie is not a member. They have a little baby girl and I think that’s most of the reason why he wants to get back into the swing of things.

Last Thursday we taught the restoration to the family and Richard mostly understands it, but I think he really wants to get Valerie involved and we do too. The lesson went really well and Valerie said she will think about baptism when we left the commitment. They didn’t make it to church yesterday, but we still have some high hopes for their family. Things are going really well and I’m excited to keep working in this area! I hope you all have a great week!

Pics: Markerit was baptized! I worked with her in Glendale and she has an amazing story! I will post it here. She doesn’t speak a lick of English so it was super awesome teaching her with Elder Hansen and just proves the need for Armenian work.
(Told by Elder Hansen)

This is Markerit!

Markerit first met the missionaries over 3 years ago when they knocked on her door.  She let them in because her husband Andranik had had a dream involving the missionaries coming before he even knew who they were.  They were both taught for a couple months but due to health problems, unsupportive family, and cultural pressures they decided to stop meeting with the missionaries.

Elder Michael Stucki and I met Markerit in November at her house.  We learned that her husband had passed away about a year earlier.  She invited us back, and so with Elder Jase Jensen we began teaching her again.  From the beginning she soaked it all in like a sponge.  She understood everything we taught her and was preparing for baptism, her only challenge was coming to church.

In January Elder Colby Ebert and Elder Tate McAllister joined in teaching her.  She still had yet to come to church, and we were worried that she wouldn't be willing to keep that commitment.  Then just a few days later, she shared with us that she had received her answer.  She had a dream where her husband spoke with her from the other side of the veil, and told her that she needed to be baptized a member of this church.

Markerit hasn't missed a week of church since this experience.  She was baptized last Sunday and confirmed today.  She is an inspiring example of following the will of the Lord, and seeking for truth.  She calls us almost every day with questions about her scripture study and is excited to have the ordinance of baptism be performed for her husband in the temple.