Monday, May 23, 2016

May 23, 2016


Elder Corry and Elder Stotts

Elder Day (1st comp.) and Elder Stotts
So, we had zone conference this week... It was elder Corry's last one so he gave his final testimony. We had one of President Chesnut's good friends come and give a training, on "Be a Book of Mormon Missionary", The gist is focus on the Book of Mormon, because if it's true, then everything else about the church follows it. It really pumped me up and was overall a fantastic training. We also were trained on not being overbearing. We talk to everyone, but we aren't as persistent if they aren't interested. I'm luck I got it at the beginning of my mission rather than the end. A lot of the more experienced missionaries had been taught their whole missions to be as persistent as possible. The guy from salt lake who taught all the leaders this told them that this is kinda the "Higher Law" of missionary work. So that's pretty cool. other than that, we had exchanges with the zone leaders this week, I was with Elder Ash in the YSA ward, while Elder Corry stayed in our area with elder Lyman. It was awesome getting to teach younger people who were so excited about the gospel. We taught someone who was at almost every level of conversion. There was a recent convert we were teaching about and helping him prepare for the Priesthood, there was a guy who had just received the priesthood, a guy who had a baptismal date, and someone who was just starting to take the lessons. It was super cool. As for our own area, we had another lesson with Dave, He still loves meeting with us, But we feel until he comes to church there isn't going to be any more progression All prayers will be greatly appreciated (:

Jacob came to church again! That's three times in a row! He can get baptized now! Although I would prefer it if he and his mom kept coming.

Until next time!

May 16, 2016

Hello everyone! How is it in the real world? My companion and I have determined that the Nevada Reno mission is the wild west. We have wild horses, sketchy little towns (however, they are big enough for the two of us), wide open skies, beautiful mountains, and it's smack in the middle of a desert.

Dave, one of our investigators in the foothill ward, has finally opened up about his biggest concern.which is temples and why only members can go inside, Big surprise there... I Think we handled it pretty well, we're going to drop off a temples magazine later this week. Hopefully that will help him get over any reservations he has.

Other than that, Jacob still has a date set for June 4th, and he came to church again, so slowly but surely drawing near. We found out that Barrie's wife's boss is in the south meadows ward (the same one they're in) she works for the FBI, so that's pretty cool. He also looks a lot like Robert downy Jr.

So that's just about it. The area is slowly growing and I found out that sisters are way better at dinner messages than we are. We had dinner with a Hispanic family that attends the Foothill ward because they're all bilingual, but they're a super missionary oriented family, So they work with the Spanish sisters a lot who cover the Spanish speakers in our area. Neither one of us knew that they had invited the other companionship so it was a little surprising. They wanted to do the spiritual thought, so of course, we let them. Let's just say we have a lot to learn...

Until next time! Stay righteous!
Random pictures from the mission!

Companion Elder Corry

May 9, 2016

Hello everyone from the land of the many slot machines! There has been so much rain lately, which is extremely weird because it's Nevada and there has been a ton of rain already this year. And because of that, everyone was smart enough to NOT go outside so we could talk to them. Although, it's still Reno. I've heard many times that if you don't like the weather just wait ten minutes and it'll change. That held true for most of this week. It went something like this: Rain, sun, rain, sun, rain, hail, rain, sun, rain and sun, rain. all in the course of an hour or two.

Despite the really bad weather (for Reno) we actually had some pretty cool miracles this week. Probably the most prominent one happened as such: on Sunday, the lesson in Elders' quorum was something to the effect of noticing the tender mercies of the Lord. One brother sharing an experience in his in-laws family about how they had a tragedy in the family and to help him deal with it, his father-in-law started a tender mercy journal, where he would record all of the tender mercies that he experienced that day. So my mind was open to seeing those tender mercies throughout the week.

There was one day we had 5 lessons set up and all of them fell through but one, typical missionary work right? But in that one we were able to set Andy with a baptismal date of July 2nd! Too bad we'll pass him off to YSA... It's shown just how evident the tender mercies of the Lord can be. All you have to do is look for them and realize that there is no such thing as a coincidence. Nope, believe it or not, those little things that make you smile are directly from God. He makes it just evident enough so you notice it. People say that God works in mysterious ways, but really He works in a way that we can understand that it's him working. If God truly is all knowing and all powerful, which He is, and His entire purpose is to help us progress and become happier, there is no way that coincidences are real. I don't think I really noticed too many tender mercies until I came out here, and now all of a sudden they're everywhere. There was a time this week when we ran into a really anti-Mormon couple, no, we didn't do anything stupid, but it did discourage me a little. But immediately after we walked away, this one family with young kids drives by and says hi to us. I can't describe the emotion that came over me, and this explanation doesn't really do it justice. But It felt as though God Himself were telling us that everything's okay, and to keep on going, we were doing the right thing. That gave me a renewed hope and fervor for the work. Other than that, not much else happened this week. We worked hard, we gave our all, and that's all that matters.

May 2, 2016

Hello everyone! Elder Stotts survived another transfer! So it looks like I'll be staying here in the south meadows and foothill wards for a little longer. So I still get to see Mercedes, BMW's, and Maserati's (yes even those) every day. It's interesting though, the last two transfers we went on exchanges with the elders in the skyline ward, which is in downtown Reno. If you know anything about Reno, you know about the many homeless/poor people that crowd around the super fancy casinos. There are so many humble people there who are very open to listening to the missionaries. In our area, the cheapest houses are around $200,000, and the most expensive are around $3-4 million. We have a lot of people in our area, but they aren't exactly looking for something better in their lives. So it's a little tough. We were also crunching to meet our mile limit, so we were biking around a lot, and it's also been very rainy as well, perfect timing I know... we were able to talk to more people though, so that was a blessing in disguise! Biking actually was really fun, the only downside is that our area is just a little too big to be an effective biking area, So we had to spend most of our time in the south meadows ward. Sorry foothill... but hey, that's Mission life. So yeah, other than that it's been a rather slow week, mainly just setting up a lot of lessons for this


April 25, 2016

Hello everyone!
another week gone by and it wasn't quite as fun as last week... but still awesome!
The reason that this week wasn't as good was because Alan, the guy we had an awesome experience with, decided to become Buddhist with his wife, so he dropped us... I have to admit, it was hard on me. I was really excited when we got the text, and then that all turned to sadness. it was tough.

But anyway besides that, Jacob, the 9 year old kid we've been teaching, has a baptismal date set for June 11th, so that's exciting. we also are almost out of miles for the month so we're biking everywhere. And of course once we start biking we get a ton of rainy days, in Nevada... So that's been fun...

We ran into this awesome guy named Shannon, he works on some super expensive lakefront property over in Tahoe. He's also interested in listening to us! Miracles for days! We also were able to have another lesson with Barrie and his son. They're both super solid, we just have to be able to talk. They're huge chatterboxes. But Barrie love the Book of Mormon, and he says he reads it an hour every day. I was a little blown away by that, he's actually reading as much if not more than we are! (because we have to study the book of mormon as well as Preach my gospel everyday) He goes off on the most random but super interesting tangents ever so it's almost impossible to tech him anything. But when his wife's there she kinda reigns him in a bit. they'' get baptized though. She works for the FBI and has a lot of member friends at work. They always try to keep up with where the family is at with the lessons, so hey! we have people keeping us honest!

That's basically the week, some pretty hard lows but I know that when bad things happen, it's only because something better is coming.

Until next week! Stay righteous

April 18, 2016

Hey everyone! This week has been amazing, I mean absolutely amazing! Miracle after miracle all in the course of just 2 or 3 days! The last time we met with Anna, her car had been stolen, and her parents are fixed in their minds that they will not let her get baptized until she is 18. they're totally cool with her meeting with us, but no baptism ): but this last lesson, elder Corry promised her that if she kept reading her scriptures, praying and coming to church, that her car would show up some time... and guess what happened... IT DID!!! they found it parked in a super sketchy part of town in a parking lot of a casino. So yeah, she's definitely going to keep coming to church and everything else now!

Next miracle, we got a text from salt lake that said there was someone who wanted to meet with us, but when we went to the address no one was home. I had learned from elder Corry that whenever you see an open garage, you investigate, because an open garage usually means someone's in there. We were on exchanges with the zone leaders so Elder Corry was up north, and the elder I was with started to walk back to the car, but when we walked away from the house I saw a few open garages and had a thought that I should check them out. No one was in them, but we did run into this dude walking a dog, who, lo and behold, was the guy we went to see. He was so happy to see us and it took everything elder Todd and I had to contain our excitement. It turns out his mom and younger brother are going to be baptized on the 23rd and he wants to be baptized as well now! he know almost nothing about the Church let alone Christianity because he is Hmong, and his wife is from Thailand and Buddhist. But the desire is there. His wife is also interested, I feel like it will take longer with her, but it will definitely happen We also set the 9 year old kid we are teaching with a date for the 18th of June. So we could potentially, at the end of this week, have 5 people set with a baptismal date! the work has just exploded! we also invited the Blueians to be baptized, they said that they aren't to that point yet, but if they do get there they would! I know they will get to that point, they're super solid and love having us over. In their own words, "you guys just bring a happy feeling into our home".

April Showers on the other hand has been an utter failure thus far. But I don't think that that is a bad thing at all. We showed the Lord that we had a fervent desire to grow the work in our area by instituting it and working so hard to have it be successful, that He has blessed us with that success in other ways than we were expecting. I know that the reason we are so successful is because of our dedication to the work and trying to find new people to teach. It's not just "ask and ye shall receive" it's, "ask and then work your tail off and then ye shall receive."

Thank you for all the birthday wishes!

Stay righteous y'all!!