What exactly are you going to do on your mission?
I have accepted the calling to be a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints so that I may share the gospel to those who are yearning to know of the truth of the gospel. I have answers to questions that people don't even know to ask. I am going to tell people where we came from, why we are here, and where we are going. I will explain to everyone that will listen why Christ is the center of the Plan of Happiness and why the Atonement that Jesus Christ has provided for us is necessary for our salvation.

Monday, April 30, 2012

My New Companion

It's a good thing you asked me about my companion... probably would have forgotten... there are two new elders here in Greenwood: Elder Peterson (my companion, knew Elder Cahoon in West Jordan Utah, they worked together) and Elder Ah Kuoi (Elder Fisher's companion, 75% Samoan, 25% Chinese, brand new missionary).

Elder Peterson and I will have lots of success, I'm sure. his stomach is the size of a pea. he used to be able to dunk a basketball ("his" sport). fun. nice. understanding.

We gave [Elder Fisher and Elder Ah Kuoi] the car full time... now we're on bikes all day every day. It's ok though, it's a good growth opportunity, and gives us more of a motivation for us to use member's help in lessons.

We have been putting a focus on less-active members recently... and on finding service opportunities.

I assume that Jacoby's talk was his farewell talk?  It'll be good that he is learned about Doctrine and Covenants 4, he'll probably have to memorize it.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Happenings in South Carolina

I get a new companion this Wednesday, Elder Cahoon is going elsewhere... hope I get somebody that will help me grow the most.

Yesterday, I made cinnamon rolls... they were/are good. (That was my lunch yesterday and dinner too, but didn't eat any till after 9 when I got back home later) (I didn't have time for anything else).

I was reminded in a letter that I don't think I finished the story of the keys I locked in the car... well, he Patterson family's house had the car in front of it and before I got there the next morning they had already called somebody to unlock it and had it ready for me to take and wouldn't accept my to pay them back for it. such nice members.

I don't know if I told you last week, but the three of us sang in church last week.

Background: except for once, which I had a picture of myself taken in, every time I went outside the rain stopped, no matter how much it was raining, always. I haven't been in the rain for more than 5 minutes yet because we were in somebody's home or we are eating lunch or dinner or asleep, except for once. Yesterday, it was pouring rain... pouring... and I didn't have a jacket (except for my super heavy duty snow/rain/anything jacket) and wouldn't have worn one if I did have one because I explained to my companion that I wanted to get soaked, because I have "missed" all of the rain my whole mission thus far. Well, yesterday was no different, it significantly slowed in how much it was raining once I made it outside and stopped in 5 minutes. Well, before the rain stopped completely (we were walking because my companion doesn't like to have the tires of our bikes spraying us from the dirty water on the street), a car stopped by us and basically threw a jacket at me and drove off (handed it to me out her window without letting me say "no thank you" really fast) ... it's is a perfect fit too. So now I have a pretty cool jacket, because somebody saw me walking in the rain without one and decided I needed one. (No idea who it was but I think that person lives in my apartment complex somewhere.)

Here are some photos sent to us by Elder Benjamin Walker:

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Two in One

Monday, April 9, 2012
Elder Cahoon and I love each other. we really do work well together and enjoy each other's personalities, I'm glad I'm able to have him work as my companion this short period of time. I hope he doesn't get transfered this upcoming transfer (in a week or two I think). I want more time to go out and do work with him.

Yesterday we went "ghetto stomping". There tends to be lots of people to talk to (because most of them don't work) but few people that keep commitments or those people that don't have the accessibility to make it to church; a lot of them put too big of a burden on the ward members because they frequently aren't ready or home when the member goes to pick them up for church. We usually track in richer neighborhoods and we get a lot of slammed doors or definite "no's" or pretty solid "yes's", or nice people that have already made up their minds about what they are going to do in their lives.

There are so many funny things that Elder Cahoon and I do together... Elder Cahoon makes a note of all of the funny things in his planner... he has too much to write about each week. Some day (like in several years) I'll have to get a copy of his emails he sent home so I can get a record of the stuff that happens with us; he is so much better about writing in his journal and typing this stuff up than I am.
Something else about Elder Cahoon, is that he knows every song, every band, movie, video game, and I know none of it. So it's interesting to be with him as our interests are so different outside of the mission. He's going to start a band after he gets done with his mission, I told him that his songs would be the only one's that I'll buy. I'll be his biggest fan because I can tell everybody that he doesn't even compare to anybody else for me for how good he is.

Monday, April 16, 2012
I got to pick my own strawberries for dinner out in a strawberry field, reminded me of you, mother, when you had a job to do that. We ended up taking a lot home; they were good.

The same person who we picked the strawberries with for dinner owns 500 acres of land about 150 cows,  horses (13 of them were over $400,000 together, but he's got lots more than that), and a couple bulls. One of his horses won first price in something in the last olympics in Europe somewhere. Some of his horses are trained to run sideways and backwards while running from angry bulls.

We had 5 people come to church this Sunday. We had a lot of people expected to come but none of them came except for one among the five. (Hope you understood that). Isn't it weird how the people that you don't expect to do stuff do and vise versa? it is.

More news: I've been in a trio companionship for the past week, and since we've been in a trio we have had some great and awesome lessons with investigators. On Wednesday president called us and asked me if we had any plans that evening, then told us to get a hold of the other companionship in our district and tell them to call president. Shortly later the other two called us and told us to head back home. One of them needed to leave for an emergency transfer (Elder Lavulo); it's too bad, we all miss him. So he packed all his stuff in two hours and we drove to the mission home in columbia. We ate dinner with president and sister holm and drove back without Elder Lavulo. Rhis upcoming tuesday Elder Fisher is going to get another companion for one week (next week is transfer week), a Spanish companion. That will be fun to have him around starting tomorrow for the next week. I always wanted to learn Spanish. (not that I'm going to get the opportunity to, and I won't, but I can still hope for it.) Since our trio companionship since Wednesday, we have had some great lessons with people and they have felt the spirit unmistakably. It's different working with a trio, I can see where it would cause some limitations and give advantage to us. (for instance going into a single women's home can't be done with 2 elders, there needs to be a third person).

Monday, April 2, 2012

Testimony to Mission President Holm

President Holm! I am very glad that I have the opportunity to share with you my testimony for your birthday; Sister Holm is very sweet to compile all of our testimonies for you.

I have a testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I have faith in what Preach My Gospel says in that as we study those salvation principles, namely: faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end, that our knowledge, wisdom, and faith on these principals and ordinances will continue to grow and we will be able to share more easily, using the spirit of discernment, the importance of following the path the savior has set for us with investigators. I know that my Savior provided an infinite and eternal sacrifice for each and every one of us to lean on. A foundation of Christ is strongly impressed in the scriptures and I know that as I continue to lean upon this sure foundation, a foundation that will not fall, that Christ will deliver me. This recent general conference left a strong impression on me with the importance of building our families together in the Gospel. We as a mission are one big family and I know that as I use those principals that were taught in general conference now within our mission that blessings will flow and peace will be shared to all of those people out there in our mission boundaries that make an effort to progress towards Christ. I know that my Savior loves me an amount that I cannot yet comprehend. I am touched when I read in 3 Nephi when Christ prays for the Nephites and Lamanites in the land. He loves them so much that they couldn't even write how awesome it was; I know that Jesus Christ and out Heavenly Father loves us that much today as well and really truly does want to best for us. I can't wait (I actually can, no need to get worried) until I get to return to my God that gave me life. I know the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord's kingdom once again restored on the earth. I know that I am here in Greenwood because this is where I can make the most difference in other people's lives for the better (including my own). I know that as I continue to study the scriptures that new things will be expounded unto me. I know that my God will provide for me my needs throughout my life. Even though I come from the dust of the earth, God will still provide for me because he loves me. I know that God will bless me for my diligence and persistence and willingness to share the Gospel with the people of the South Carolina Columbia Mission; I know he is shaping my life for future years to come for the better. I love my brothers and sisters here in South Carolina; I frequently wish they knew how much I care for them. I am grateful to Heavenly Father for providing leadership for me to guide and direct me towards helping others come unto Christ. I know my redeemer lives. I know the gospel of Jesus Christ was restored through Joseph Smith. I know that the priesthood authority here on the earth brings us into covenants with our Father in Heaven that we otherwise may not have been able to get. I love my Heavenly Father. I love the Prophet that God has provided for us, namely President Thomas Spencer Monson. I know that God is preparing me for my great potential to carry out his great work. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.