Monday, October 24, 2016

Helping Hands

Alrighty, so this week felt really long.
Elder Morris on exchanges
We had so much we had to get done! The zone is really changed up from this transfer this past Tuesday. Five white washes (both companions new to the area) and then 6 more missionaries. We have 6 missionaries who are being trained right now too in the zone! 

?, Brayden, Leuluai, Morris, Dillree Exchanges
 We exchanged with the Summerville 2nd Elders and on exchanges, while biking I spotted something moving, and then went closer and it was this baby gator! First gator I have seen on my mission! Only took 13 months haha! It was sick! 
Can you spot the baby Gator? He's 6 feet long- spotted him in a
short cut we took while on biking exchange in Summerville
The stake is really doing an awesome job with the cleanup efforts after the hurricane. On Saturday we were organized into groups to go out and take apart some down trees. There is a website where people sign up to have help, and then some group can claim the project and then show up at their door with people, tools and whatever else to get it done.
Service from Saturday
There were 160 projects to do on Saturday and we finished 6! We met up with the Elders Quorum, got our Mormon helping hands t-shirts and went out to work! We worked from the morning until 5:00. It was super fun! The people we helped out were super happy, and they were all taking pictures. People even came out of surrounding houses to see what was up! A lady requested a Book of Mormon too! On Sunday the Stake President
Hurricane damage- many houses have debree sitting out front from cleanup efforts
gave anyone who was going to leave and do service permission to wear work clothes to church then to leave after sacrament to go and serve! Bishop conducted sacrament meeting in jeans, a t-shirt and a yellow Mormon helping hands vest! It was an interesting thing, but it was so cool seeing so many people willing to go out and serve! We will be doing that this next Saturday the 29th as well. 

Brother Slagle is a less-active who we have been working with, and he is doing so much better! He is working towards receiving the priesthood and going to the temple! We are still working with him on some word of wisdom issues, but he will be going to the temple in the next few transfers! Cannot wait! Also, Yola, who was a less-active I worked with for 5 months when I was doing Spanish work in North Chuck has finally been interviewed by bishop and is taking temple preparation classes! I will get to go to the temple with her soon as well I hope! Sheena is doing super well, and is still set for November 5th to be baptized! We just have to re-teach some points and then get her a baptismal interview. Time is ticking away. I don't want the mission to come to an end too quick!

I read a talk this week called "let your faith show." It had some really good points about standing for what you believe in, cause that can be hard. He said in it that courage, not compromise, brings God's smile of approval! Be courageous y'all! That is something as a leader I have had to learn- not tolerating disobedience. The level of our obedience to God's commandments shows the amount of our faith.
CAPTION THIS...

Monday, October 17, 2016

After the Storm

Well, there is not much damage done in my area or areas close to mine. Georgetown, Florence and Myrtle Beach did get hit pretty hard though. We will be coordinating with the stake in efforts to clean up some of those parts. When we got home Tuesday night after Mission Leader Conference (MLC), all the damage we saw were some downed trees and branches. Nothing really significant. 

MLC on Tuesday was awesome! Well, Tuesday morning we
Douglas & Heimuli, Me & Fife. Fathers & Sons:)
had MLC ball with the Elders---- we have some really good ballers here. I saw Elder Fife and Douglas again. I am pretty good friends with all the Elders in MLC. We learned a lot and the second session, Elder McCarther of the 70 came and just went off on many different topics...without preparation. I gained so many insights to the scriptures! MLC is a pretty good group! 

Time lapse of balling at the Mission Leaders Conference
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Afterwards we went to the mission office to get packages, and we took a mission office pic that mom saw on Facebook. It was the Mechams who were in the picture, and they will be leaving this week!! On Wednesday, our Sister
MLC & the Mechams
Training Leaders and us planned out Zone 
Training Meeting for Friday. President showed up to our ZTM, and it was a good one! The trainings all tied in very well, and the spirit was super strong. A lot of people said I was really enthusiastic, and I am glad they saw that. As we are enthusiastic about the work, our missionaries in the zone will catch on too! (Not that they haven't yet). 

Wednesday Elder Seamons and I taught Book of Mormon class together. We did not know we were teaching, and we were to go over Alma 19. Oh man was the spirit so strong. As we read and then stopped, the spirit 
Dillree, Seamons, me
literally put words into our mouths which surprised me. I gained many new insights from the chapter. One huge one was about prayer. So many prayers were answered and they were realized too. Ammon talked about the joy he felt in verse 14 that the Lord basically had answered his prayer he offered on behalf of others. As I read this, the thought that popped into my head was how much more joy can I feel if I would recognize answers to my prayers. Often I have just kinda "put in an order an hung up". My prayers have been more meaningful, but I can still do better. Keeping a journal has helped me see answers to my prayers- wohoo! 

No news on Sheena...we did not see her this week because she was super duper busy. We did see the Muckenfuss, and oh how I love them so much!! They are praying and reading everyday (well the mom is) and she is progressing in the gospel. She is still on date for Dec 17... that seems like a long ways away. 

This is Elder Dillree's last transfer in the mission! I will take over the area afterwards. We will make his last transfer the best one! Our zone is being shaken up a ton! We have 5 white washes (both companions being transferred out). Also one of the Spanish areas is being dissolved like my area in training was. Its crazy!

Elder Seamons is going home Wednesday, and that is sad! We have become good friends. Its so weird seeing people leave. A few more days past 11 months and I am back! I don't want it to come though! It will come pretty fast.

Me at the office.
At the office saying goodbye to the Mechams!
MLC
Lambert, Overson, Holt, Me, Hartman, Dillree
Charleston Zone
STL's. Mattinson & Vorkink
had to do an awkward pic
shrimp & grits
Dillree, Seamons, & me

Monday, October 10, 2016

Hurricane Refugees!

Hey y'all! What a crazy week! It started off great and then, well... got crazy. 

Monday night we had a really great lesson with Sheena. She has been investigating the church for a year. We talked about repentance and prayer a whole bunch. When we felt that it was right, we asked her if she would be baptized on November 5th. She put her head down and stayed silent for about a minute. We were very silent and intent on her. She raised her head and said "yes". I was so happy! She is one of the most solid investigators I have worked with! She said the prayer to close the lesson and said "thank you for convincing the missionaries to go on missions so they could teach people like me." This had such an impact on me. We really do make a difference in the lives of many. I love being a missionary. 

Now for what y'all want to hear- on Tuesday we had exchanges and I was in North Charleston, while Elder Dillree was in Mount Pleasant. At about 3:00ish I got a call from the AP (Hartman) asking me what I knew about this hurricane. The sister training leaders had called him about Governor Haley declaring a state of emergency. I did not know much, aside from that mom & dad emailed & said it would be here late Friday night. Right after I hung up, Sister Henderson from the office calls me up to ask how it looked up there. Of course it looked good because the 'cane was not here yet. She advised us to get ready in case we needed to evacuate. 

We headed to the store to buy water, and the lines were long and most of the water & food was gone. We did get some though. We then went to get gas in case we were to evacuate and that took a looong time. Everyone was lined up to get gas. Throughout this, I was keeping the zone informed on what the APs had told us. We soon got word that Governor Haley had ordered an evacuation to the inland. We told everybody and we had the whole zone get to the West Columbia stake center by 9:30 pm. From about 4:00 until 8:30 I was constantly on the phone making sure everyone knew and was out of here.  A little stressful- but that's alright!

President was in Charleston with his family I think, so the AP's did most of the facilitating of this. We left at 8:30pm and got hammered with traffic. It is a 1 hr 40 minute drive to the stake center, but took us 4 hours. We showed up at the AP's apartment instead at 12:30am. They had placed our missionaries with other companionships in the West Columbia zone and stayed like that until this morning at 6:30 when all Charleston companionships went back home. It was like a 6-day long P-day. We tried to do a lot of service, but frequently ran out of options.  Charleston downtown is flooded, and Georgetown is wrecked & pretty ugly, but from what we have heard North Chuck is ok! We are staying today because tomorrow we have Mission Leadership Council tomorrow all day. So that is that! I will send a video about what we did this week so I don't have to spend more time typing!
Love y'all



video of them getting out of town
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video this morning
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Elder McLaughlin- envió desde mi iPad


Columbia, SC temple after helping to do clean up service inside


So stoked BYU won! Elder Overson & I are also PATS fans and everyone
else loves to hate on us hahaha.

Monday, October 3, 2016

MORE THAN HALF-WAY!!


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  • General conference feast! Missionaries chipped in and we did a roast with the crock pots the mission gave us, and we made some dang good banana pudding! Southern treat for sure! 

  • General conference was so amazing! I loved the talks and I felt like they talked a ton about having a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon. Elder Uchtdorf laid out the whole plan of salvation, and Elder Davies taught the entire restoration. That was sick! It is so important to have the Book of Mormon to fall back on.
  • Exchanged with the APs this week! Elder Overson came down here with me. He was my ZL last transfer in West Columbia. I love that guy! We taught very boldly and pretty well together. He is a dang good teacher. There's a certain way to teach each culture of people down here, and he has it down!

  • Service activity where the zone showed up! it was pretty good! a lot of trash we picked up!
  • Hit my year/ half-way mark and went to a taco truck to celebrate~ contacted two Hispanics as well. good news: Spanish isn't gone! These guys had a friend who is serving a mision in Utah! Pretty cool! 
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