August 5, 2013
Thank you! I have gotten one package which I’m assuming is some kind of shoe, because it’s in that Zappos box like my boots were. I haven’t gotten the others yet. They will probably be here today then! I’m excited! Believe it or not I haven’t opened them yet! [Josh’s birthday was August 6th, so he is referring to his birthday packages – eds.]
My interview with President Pitt didn’t happen. During our district meeting he was making calls to Salt Lake somewhere in the building when all of a sudden Sister Pitt leans over, passes out and hits her head really hard on the floor. Her eyes were wide open, but she was not moving and was unresponsive for 5 min or so. It was really scary. We had no idea what to do. She didn’t respond to anything as we tried to talk to her and the Zone Leader's ran to get President Pitt. He is a bigger man, and I’ve never seen him move as fast and as smoothly as he did. But he got on his hands and knees over her and right as he put his hand on her head she came back to herself and was able to start talking again. I don’t know if it was a coincidence of if President Pitt had some kind of blessing going through his head, but it was a cool but really scary experience. She ended up going to the hospital and ended up being ok. They didn’t let her sleep because they thought she would have a concussion from hitting the ground. But after all of that he postponed interviews until this week, so I will meet with him on Friday.
I am still with Elder Price. Apparently Argentina visas take a long time. There are a few in our district waiting, and they have been out 3-4 transfers. Dakota, Ryan, Kelly and Jordan came back to church Sunday and loved it. What’s cool is Kelly’s mom is kind of not sure about having her daughter go to an LDS church, but Kelly still really wants to go and that’s good. We had a lesson with Ryan that night about the plan of salvation and things, and we have set him on date for August 27th. We talked with him about a lot and he really opens up, telling us about how he and his girlfriend (Kelly) have dated for 3 years and are planning on getting married, but they aren’t sure when. But he also brought up they are waiting until marriage too so the law of chastity won’t be too much of a problem. He says he loves being with us and Kelly does too. They just feel peace I guess, and that’s something they have been looking for. So hopefully Kelly will follow Ryan. He also told us about the day we found him he was praying for someone to help him relax and things. It was a longer story that I can’t remember to well, but it was really cool. We hope to talk to his mother soon as well, and hopefully their family will join along with friends after seeing there example. Pretty cool experiences
Jay still hasn’t been to church. I don’t think he quite understands the importance of it, but we will continue to work with him.
That’s exciting about the LDS Encampment! I bet you [Dad] are finally glad for it to be over! That would be something really cool to see. It’s good that Jace has enjoyed football. I dont think anyone really enjoys the running though, except for maybe Jonathan
I still don’t have an e-mail from Jake. I don’t know what’s wrong with this e-mail. Oh well, Ill keep trying, but that’s exciting he is working on his mission papers!
I remember you telling me about when you guy watched Monday Night Football when I was born. I wish I knew who was playing! I guess it can always be looked up! I enjoy telling that to people. Ifeel pretty proud about it!
And that’s great about Aunt Teri! Tell her I love her! How are all the cousins doing? I wish I had a temple in my mission. The closest one is either Columbus, Ohio or Louisville, Kentucky, or DC depending on what area we are in, so we have them everywhere around us but none in the mission.
And $168 Million [referring to the cost of the new University of Oregon football facility]!?! Are you kidding! I hate Oregon so much, but at the time it still gives me butterflies imagining what it would be like to play for a program like that. I mean those guys are 19-24 or so and they are like Gods and have the nicest equipment in the nation. I really hope they still go downhill though. I bet Phil [Knight] did it just because Chip Kelley left and knew they would need all the recruits they can get and this will definitely help them. They are starting to run their program almost like the MLB. The team with the most money is the better team because they can buy players. Oregon “buys" players not by paying them (even though they probably do), but they buy the best of everything so players want to play there for the gear. It makes me kinda mad, mostly because I hate Oregon. I wouldn’t be complaining if UW did it but that’s because I’m biased. Oh well, this will be a hard fall for sure being my first full season away since like forever. Oh well, it will be that much better when I get back!
Anyways, iI love you guys! Thank you for everything!
August 12, 2013
I’ll be sure to check at the post office [regarding his missing birthday package – eds.] after I’m done with e-mails! Thank you. I’m sure it’ll be there.
I wish I could be at the lake this week! I did take for granted the opportunity I had to swim and do those kind of things, especially with how hot it is here. When I see a pool or a river or something of that nature all I want to do is go jump in and hang out for a bit. Oh well, I guess it will be just that much better when I get back! That doesn’t surprise me about Jace [going paddle boarding on the lake]. He doesn’t seem scared of anything really, and that’s cool he made a friend up there, especially one who is a lot older!
I wish I could have gone with Jonathan [to Wyoming to play with a friend – eds.]! They have all those things out here... but as you know we aren’t allowed to do any of those things. Although we get invited to all the time. It kills! That’s cool about Encampment! I bet it’s nice to have it over finally though. I have heard Chad Lewis is a great speaker and the liaison for the NFL to China. My companion said he had him speak to them in the MTC and when he was asked to translate a game for the Chinese, he accepted but forgot he only knew mission Chinese -- not football Chinese. So he testified that Tom Brady was throwing true passes!
That’s too bad about the Edens! I guess I’ll just have to tell the mission office to give me a layover in Colorado on my way home and then he can stop by the airport while I’m there!
I did get an e-mail from Jake today so that’s good. i just have to write a whole new e-mail so he can receive it.
It’s going good here! On Friday we spent the whole day helping out at a wedding, and I’ll be the first to tell you I’m never going to one of those again. It was so boring! I think you might be happy with this. When I get married it will be as simple as can be. I think you guys already know I don’t care for any of that extra stuff. There was an exciting part... kind of, I guess. When they got married they poured this colored sand into a glass thing. I have no idea what for but they did right before they were married by the preacher... but after the bride’s sister was carrying it in and right in front of everyone in the middle of the room, she dropped it. It shattered and sand was everywhere! So that was a nice change of pace. That whole cutting cake together and helping each other take a drink and stuff – not happening – that was the corniest thing I’ve ever seen! Anyway other than that it’s been pretty good here
Dakota is still on date for the 17th but we may have to move it back because of his tea drinking, but we will see. We set Ryan and his brother, Jordan, on date for the 24th! So that’s pretty exciting. They can help push each other to get there. We hope to get their mom involved as well. Last night we taught Jordan the Plan of Salvation. He told us he was so happy just hearing it and seeing it (we drew it out for him), and he feels like he understands it perfectly like he has learned it before. When we told him that he did, in the pre-existence, he just lit up! And it brought him to tears (a 16 year old boy keep in mind)! It was a really cool experience. He said he is hanging it up on his wall!
The night before he and Ryan got in a big fight, which involved punches being thrown and Ryan got kicked out, which is crazy because he is the nicest guy in the world, and always tells us how bad he feels whenever he has a bad thought. After things cooled down we talked with him and Jordan separately. Ryan told us how he feels sick to his stomach just thinking about what he did, and how he has never done that before. Jordan was just crushed because he doesn’t have a father in his life, and Ryan is his role model and the person he looks up to the most. After our lesson with Jordan we had him pray. He prayed that Ryan and him would work things out and for him to know he forgives him, and talked a lot about how much he loves him and things. Later that night we got a text from Ryan telling us how he sent a huge apology text to Jordan and everything is all right now. We hope that brings them even closer together than they already are.
Other than that not much else is going on, just working with those 3 mainly and playing basketball, continuing to find people to teach.
I had my interview with Pres Pitt. It went really well. He was just so excited to talk about the work happening in Pennsboro and wondering how we are doing it. He was just so excited to talk about it and told me how in his time being mission president, Pennsboro has never gotten anyone to church, and we have been getting 4 consistently now! It sounds as if I may stay another transfer here and before I would not want to, but now I do want to stay because the work is progressing, and I have made some really good friends here in Ryan and Jordan.
Love you guys!
August 19, 2013
Dakota’s baptism date was moved back to the same time as Jordan’s. Ryan left to go to school in Parkersburg and said he wasn’t ready and was not sure if he could keep those covenants he would have to make. We like to hear that because he takes it seriously. But Jordan and Dakota both should make their date for the 24th! It just depends on getting their parents to sign consent and to make sure they are both off of work so they can be there. Jordan and Dakota are both really excited! The mom isn’t taking the lessons yet but we have talked to her a little bit, and she is really nice and likes us to come over. We think that after Jordan gets baptized that it may spark her into investigating. So that will be good!
The ring [Josh’s lacrosse state championship ring] fits on my index finger, but not my ring finger. I think that will be fine cause it still works, and I don’t know when I will have time to stop by a jeweler.
That’s cool about Jordan [Murray], I think from what my companion says Brazil visas come a little faster than others. [Jordan was called to serve a mission in Brazil] My companion says his usually takes around 3-4 transfers in the field to get it. So I bet Jordan will get his pretty soon. William [Lange] sent me an e-mail today, so that was cool seeing how he is doing.
That’s good Jace is enjoying football! We just went to Jordan’s high school scrimmage Saturday to watch him play with Ryan and Kelly. It was really hard watching high school football again because all I wanted to do was play! Especially with them being a 2A school, and when I played we were a 4A, I think. So the competition they were up against seemed like middle school kids. I would have loves to play against them! Oh well, maybe I can play again if I can find enough weights to put on another 25 pounds out here and take a 2 or 3 tenths of a second off my 40 time. I don’t think that will happen out here, not enough time/resources. Oh, and I’m out of protein again . . . could you send me some more please :) If you could some pre- workout formulations? That’s one of the few ways I can get up to work out in the AM. Well at least work out hard so I don’t have to do it at night! I’m still at about 150-153 now. It changes depending on how much water I drink because of the creatine, but I’m at least maintaining!
It will be bitter sweet this season with the Hawks – being so good and supposed to win the superbowl this year and I’ll miss it! Oh well, I guess it’s a blessing in disguise. I’m going to have to have you buy me a newspaper too if they win! Can you get your Seahawks CFO friend to get me some signatures please!? :)
And that’s funny about the wedding. I’m not surprised at all though! I would debate going just for the interesting experience! I’ve talked with some companions out here when we see people do things that are so weird! We always want to know peoples thought processes to see how they got to the decision that what they did/said was ok. I think that would be pretty funny to see that!
Oh and I was wondering if you could possibly make some copies of Elder Holland talks on some DVD's so that I can use them to show investigators. Sometimes those talks can do a lot more than we can. Just whenever you can find time. I don’t need them anytime soon. The ones I would want are
"Safety for the soul"
"My words... Never Cease"
"The only true God and Jesus Christ Whom he hath sent"
"Lord I Believe"
Anyway, other than that I’m doing good, and it’s a toss-up whether Elder Price or I leave. I’m not sure what I want to happen, but either way I’ll be happy with. President Pitt made it kind of sound like I would stay another, but he never is for sure until the day before transfers. So we will see I will know if I leave in about a week or if I stay, so I’ll let you know!
Love you guys!
August 28, 2013
Well I found out last night that I am staying here in Pennsboro another transfer, which I’m not too sad about. I’ve come to love it here. Especially the people and great friends I have made! Even better news is I am going to be serving with Elder Shaffer, who was my companion in the MTC. We got along really well. We are extremely similar, and he loves basketball, which may be one reason President Pitt decided to have him come here. Also I heard that he has gotten big into lifting since he has been out here and has over 100 pounds in weights and a couple bars and a pushup assist that adds 180 pounds to your push up! Not to mention he will have plenty of protien and pre-workout as well! I plan on being close to 160 after this transfer if my body lets me get there naturally! It will be an awesome transfer! And I get to continue working with those we have that are so close to baptism! I think we could have 4 or 5 this transfer is the Lord wills it!
Sadly the baptisms did not go through. It was interesting how it happened though. We had both of them interviewed and they both passed and were extremely excited last Wednesday. Dakota and Jordan both need parental permission because they are under 18. (16 and 17) and with Dakota we could just never get in contact with his mom who is always so busy with work. She is the one who is an inactive member, but all for him being baptized. His step dad is a Baptist so obviously against it. Although since she is his biological mother we only need her signature, but we were not able to meet with her in time. So we hope to visit with her this week or next to get the baptism ready.
Jordan was the weird one, I guess. We had his interview last Wednesday and our District Leader said he was more than excited during the interview and he had been studying all day for it. He passed, and we got his mother (who is a single mother) to sign the baptismal record. She had known all along that he was taking lessons and planning on being baptized. After we made sure to answer any questions she had (which she had none) we went back to the apartment. About 5 min later we got a text from Jordan telling us his mom doesn’t want him to be baptized anymore because she doesn’t think he is ready. I think Jordan was more frustrated that we were. He is still a little bitter about it. He was so excited! So we hope to talk with his mother some time and to help her understand this is a good thing and he is ready.
Other than that things are still going good. Jay (the African man) we are teaching came to church with his son, Marlon, on Sunday, and he loved it! He told us that his fiancé had a lot of worries about the church, and said he is going to bring her and she will have all her problems resolved just by coming! Also, since he and his fiancé are obviously not married and live in the same house, he can’t be baptized until they get married or move out. So after Sunday school we talked to him about marriage and how it is important and its something he needs to do before he can get baptized. We knew he was short on money and told him that our branch president can do the wedding for free. And they he can begin to tell his family their wedding will be in one year when they get sealed in the temple. We showed him some pictures of the DC temple and told him how he can be married for time and all eternity there... and for free!! He seemed pretty excited about that and began to ask us questions on what all he has to do to get married! Of course, I had no clue so he went and sat down with President Schweinbraten, and they talked about it. I think they may make that commitment, talk about acting on your faith!
One of my favorite families here has been the Colkets. They are a great family who have a huge property on the top of a hill to themselves! Steve Colket, who is the father, is so COOL! He is an 8th degree black belt in just about everything I swear. He has a dojo in Harrisville where he teaches 5 or more kinds of different martial arts, and he is an avid hunter. And by avid I mean he has a whole cabin built full of stuffed animals from turkeys - deer- bear- buffalo. He has just about every kind of animal you can hunt there. It’s like the ultimate man cave complete with a fridge, microwave, A/C unit 70" plasma that always has the hunting channel playing, and over 15 rifles and pistols! Diana, his wife, is an amazing person and very strong in the gospel and a hard worker. It’s always amazing how she can stay so active and have a testimony like she does. But anyway, they are an awesome family and Steve has told me when I’m off my mission I have to call him to have him take me on a hunting trip as well as to get my concealed weapons permit!
And that’s cool its Bishop McArthur now! I can totally see him being the bishop. I’m surprised it took this long!
Thank you for getting the Elder Holland talks ready. That will be awesome! I can actually put music on from the library. The computers have itunes on them and other missionaries always have CD's, so I put their music on my iPod as i go. But thanks though!
I’m way to excited about the football season. Too bad I’ll miss it! Its bittersweet the seahawks are doing so well! I want them to win the superbowl but not while I’m out here! Oh well, it’s better than them going winless I guess! Will you save the Huskies ticket for that first game in the new stadium? I would love to keep that! The only problem with a UW vs. BSU game is I don”t know who I want to win! It’s a lose-lose situation, or a win-win I guess. Oh well, I’m sure it will be a fun game!
Anyways things out here are going good! Could you possibly send me the other half of the ties I got before my mission?
Love you guys!