I'm glad to hear that Hailey continues to grow and be healthy, that Nathan and Ashley are preparing for their baby, and that Monica was able to find a job. Maybe this is beginning of a future as a librarian for Monica.
We've had a great week this past week. We've lacked some solid investigators recently, but we've been flooded with blessings in this past week.
We extended a 7 day challenge to pray and invite someone to meet with us to a member family a week ago. THey brough someone to church yesterday and then we went and ate dinner with them last night. Their friend is going to be moving about a block away from them in the beginning of July. I taught her a little bit in my past area, but now she's going to have a perfect fellowshipping situation. She enjoyed church and is going to continue to attend.
A former investigator showed up at church 2 weeks ago and he wants us to start teaching him as soon as he moved to a new house at the end of the month of June. We're excited to begin working with him. He randomly came to church so we can tell that something has changed in his life.
A guatemalan guy went to church in the north ward yesterday and he wants to start meeting with the missionaries. He lives in our area and we're going to begin teaching him this week as well.
Another member found a less active lady that he works with. She's been inactive for a long time and recently moved to Calgary. She's married to a non-member but accepted an invitation from the member to begin listening to the missionaries again.
We also extended a 7 day challenge this past Saturday to a less active couple and they immediately thought of two people that they are going to talk to and invite this week.
President has been stressing the importance of being obedient and extending 7 day challenges in our areas. He's stressed that it's not about us, but that we leave strong commitments with ward members so that they can receieve the blessings of sharing the gospel and so that they can have a faith building experience. As we've been obedient, blessings seemed to pour in these past couple days. New investigators have came in all different forms. Maybe not exactly related to the 7-day challengein some cases, but blessings for being obedient to the will of the Lord and the mission president. We've really been filled with gratitude the last couple days for the things we've been blessed with. Thank you for your prayers and support.
The summer weather has finally arrived. It won't be here for long, but I think if the weather was like it is right now all year round, Calgary would be a town ten times the size it is.
The Calgary Stampede is coming up the beginning of July and I'll probably be right in the middle of it being in downtown. We'll definitely try to avoid it as much as we can.
Thanks again for everything! I love and miss you all.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Sorry, I forgot to let you know that we were switching preparation day to Mondays. It's going to be on Monday from now on. I'm pretty sure that most missions have Monday preparation day. I'm really not sure why our mission was on Wednesdays. I think that we're really going to enjoy having it on Monday. We can work all week non-stop leading up to church on Sunday and then have a break before we start another week.
This past week has flown by. We saw a neat miracle yesterday as we were trying by some old contact addresses. We decided to stop by the address of an old convert from about 2 years ago. We knew that she had moved to Montreal shortly after her baptism, but felt that we should stop by and see if another latino family had moved in after she left. There was a lady named katalina from mexico in the front yard and we were able to talk to her for about 20 minutes and share the a little bit about the restauration with her. Small experiences like that always excite us and make us very grateful for the guidance of the Holy Ghost. Sometimes it is difficult to find new people to teach.
We also saw a neat miracle with a less-active couple that recently moved to Calgary and that we've been visiting. The husband had served a mission in Mexico but life choices had kind of led him astray after. We felt that sharing the gospel could really benefit them in their lives and testimony. As we shared the message, they expressed doubts that they were worthy to share the gospel because they hadn't been living it to the fullest. We tried to encourage them and gave some pamplets to the husband to share with some latinos at his work. He was excited to share with us yesterday the spirit he had felt as he shared his beliefs with his boss. He said that it really helped him in his personal conviction. He showed up at church yesterday for the first time in a white shirt and tie and seems to really be on track to get back on the right path.
In the mission, we're really focusing on Christlike attributes again for this transfer. We're going to be encouraging and talking about setting personal goals. I think it'll really help us grow and become better servants and experience the life long changes.
The baptism picture is from Sabrina Cruz and her husband. Elder Galloway is on the left and Elder Walker is next to me. Elder Walker was my MTC companion from Florida and Elder Galloway and I taught Sabrina before I was transfered. The member performing the baptism in Angelica Delgado's brother. Him and his family really helped them along the teaching process.
The other pictures are from last week in the mountains.
I'm glad to hear that all went well with Hailey and that she's doing well. Thank you for all your love and support. This week, I pass the hump mark. Time really has flown by!
Monday, June 14, 2010
It sounds like sara is in the process of having her baby, so I hope and pray that everything turns out well.
This week has been an exciting week. A couple that Elder Galloway and I found in my last area and began to teach were baptized this past Sunday. They asked me to speak on the Holy Ghost and so I was able to go to the baptism in the ward. It was good to see all of the members from the ward that I miss. It was a special experience because of the way that we were led to find her and her family. She had been praying specifically and earnestly for guidance in raising her children. She had recently felt overwhelmed about her responsibilities as a mother. Elder Galloway and I felt impressed to walk more and we met her in the street one afternoon near her house. We felt compelled to walk as we discussed some words from my setting apart by the stake president. It was neat because I was able to use the story in my talk to teach about the Gift of the Holy Ghost.
We've also been excited about the english classes that we teach on tuesday and thursdays. They continue to be successful in meeting new spanish speaking people. Last night there were two new people that were brought to the class by freinds. We had 13 students and only one of them was a member. Two of the students came to church last Sunday as well and we've began teaching them. We've been developing good relationships with the students and it really has been fun and enjoyable. The stkae is in the process of calling a full time teacher for the class and providing funding for materials and things.
The bed bugs seem to all be gone. As part of the spraying, we had to bag all of our clothes, bedding, and suits and load them into our car and was it all at the laundry mat and dry cleaner. All of our furniture had to be cleaned and moved around so that all the base boards were available. We had spent several hours preparing the apartment and were waiting for the exterminator last thursday morning. As the exterminator arrived, the city busted a main gas pipe a block from our house. We were immediately evacuated for 3 hours and couldn't start the car. The exterminator couldn't return until this past Monday, so we had to unload and do everything over again. It was a pretty funny situation.
Next week is transfer week already. We had a meeting this past week with President because some changes are coming up in our program with new missionaries coming in and some missionaries going home. By september, we'll be the oldest generation of spanish missionaries. Time flies. President is thinking about special training programs and possibly a spanish only zone to help us with smoe of the challenges we experience.
There's a chance that a member is taking us next preparation day to the mountains. We're pretty excited to get out and hopefully see a moose or mountain goat or something.
I love and miss you all!
This past week has been a good week. Francisco and Enrique were both baptized and confirmed on Sunday. It was a great spiritual baptism and we had another investigator named Natalia that was able to attend. We had made some cookies for the baptism and she was joking that she was going to contract us to make them for her baptism as well. She doesn't have a set date yet, but she should hopefully be getting baptized soon. She says that she wants to wait until August when the friend that initially invited her to come to church comes back from vacations. We're hoping though that the spirit will change her heart sooner so that she can recieve the blessings. Many members came to the baptism and like always, the refreshments turned into a fiesta. There was a wedding on Saturday and we ended up with all of the leftovers at the baptism. Another member showed up with tortillas and started frying flautas. Bishop has tried to emphasize that it's not a party, but the members haven't quite caught on yet.
Sunday was stake conference and there was a broadcast from Vancouver for all of Canada. President Uchtdorf, Elder Ballard, and Elder Pace of the seventy all spoke. They covered several different topics a lot was said of the history of Canada with the church adn the great contribution that the members here make to the growth and work. A lot was also addressed to the youth and to parents about preparing and teaching the youth to learn by faith and through the spirit to prepare themselves. My respect and love for this country definitely was strengthened through the messages shared.
I'm really am enjoying serving with Elder Chunn adn Walker. They're great elders and examples to me. We have some other investigators that we're working with and hope that they'll soon be ready for baptism. We extend invitations to everyone in every lesson and we're seeing great success with it in the mission. President has promised us as we do it in love that the investigators will realize that we offer because we love them and know that baptism is what they need for their eternal progression. I know that the Spirit guides us to offer the invitation in ways that won't offend or be overbearing. It has really helped us uncover the true doubts and concerns of investigators. Several investigators have went from no never, to maybe sometime, to probably as we've helped them along. My personal testimony that the Atonement is truly what all of the children of our Heavenly Father need in their lives has grown through this as well.
I have some bad news. We've caught a bed bug in our apartment. There's been a couple apartments in the mission that have had them recently and we probably got them from one of them. Don't worry, Sister Archibald has a son on a mission and is making sure we're taken care of. It's just been a lot of tedious work. Basically everything in the house has the be bagged up and washed at a laundry mat or dry cleaned.
I'm glad to hear that everything is still going well with the adoption adn the baby on the way. I love you all! Thanks for your prayers and support!
I'm glad to hear again that all seems to be going well with the babies.
I forgot to tell you last week about the temple ground breaking. It was two Saturdays ago. The temple is going to be built in the northwest part of calgary on a hill that overlooks the city. The groundbreaking had been delayed a little bit because of some resistance from the surrounding community, but they have worked everything out. Elder Hallstrom from the presidency of the 7 came and presided. We weren't able to attend the ceremony, but we were able to watch it from a live stream at the stake center. It was interesting to hear the history of the church here in calgary adn see the excitement of all the members. There were several representatives from the community in attendance and Elder Hallstrom's message was basically the Plan of Salvation. It was very simple, but is why we build and construct temples in the world.
I also have found out recently that we live about three houses down from the main Hell's Angels hangout in the city. They're fairly quiet apart from the occasional motorcycles that ride past our house. Our neighbor said that in the summer there's sometimes 20-30 bikes parked out in the street. A very large man with tattoos sometimes walks some pit bulls in the neighborhood. I haven't decided if this is a good or bad thing. I assume it'll probably keep us pretty safe.
We've been excited for the baptism of at least Enrique this Sunday. We planned the baptismal program and hope and pray that everything goes smoothly for Sunday. Francisco has been out of town for 2 weeks working and hopefully he has been able to quit smoking. We are going to meet with him tonight and find out. I think the fact that Enrique is firm in his date it'll give Francisco the extra push that he needs as well to take the step. We visit them everynight just trying to keep the spirit in their lives and focused towards the steps they're making.
I think I told you last week but we've also started teaching an English class twice a week now. The same students are coming back every class and we've had between 8-12 students every class. We really think that this will soon lead to some very good opportunities to teach them. We're at least developing some good trust and friendships that will help when they begin listening about the gospel.
The winter just can't seem to go away. It is supposed to snow this Friday again.
This weekend is stake conference but it'll be a regional broadcast from Vancouver by President Uchtdorf. We're excited for what he has to say about the area. The Vancouver temple was just dedicated a couple weeks ago and with the groundbreaking here I assume it'll be missionary work/temple related.
There's 2 spanish elders leaving in two weeks or so and then a couple more over the next coulpe transfers after that. We're anticipating some changes coming up. We know that President is going to be forming an all Spanish zone. Currently, we are in English zones. I think it'll really help with having training in Spanish and working with the unique challenges in the program.
I hope all is well! Love and miss you!