Monday, February 22, 2016

We both stayed (Feb 22)

I don't know why you did not get my last email.   It said it sent, but the same thing happened to other people too.   Anyway this last transfer both Elder Franz and I stayed.  We just got another one to pull around.  We got Elder Rogers from Utah.  He came out with me, so we both hit our six month mark this last Friday.  We have been working with members a bit and next week we have zone conferences about that. Also, we got one member referral this last Saturday from Sister Hurst, the ward mission leader's wife, which we contacted five minutes later, and now we have a meeting with them on Wednesday. 

Also, we have mainly been working with a lot of less actives recently.  And one family, the Grubbs, is doing pretty well.  We got another potential family to teach, however when we walked up and knocked on the door.  The husband answered and apparently his wife had not told him we were coming yet. 

Have a great week. The picture is the picture that we sent out to our ward introducing
us, with our new companion to the ward.

Happy Valentine's Day (February 15, 2016)

Thanks for the package it was both unexpected and pretty much gone after 24 hours.  The nobakes were gone before that night. And the dove chocolates were by the next evening.    We also had a baptism this Saturday.  It was for Marie.  We are going to have Brother Hubbard confirm this upcoming Sunday because he was one of the ones that first taught her ten years ago.   It went really well except for the two mistakes we found in the program. It said it was January 13th and her last name was spelled wrong.  Also, we found later that the baptism suit that she was wearing turned pink because of her hair dye. However, they did manage to fix it. 

Also funny story, we had an appointment in Sun lakes, a retired community. We went and parked at the corner house and walked up to the house.  It looked a bit off and I asked Elder Franz of this was the right house and he said yeah and that we were late.   In short it was the wrong house.  The guy opened the door and recognized what we were and Invited us in.  He gave us each twenty bucks for lunch and then gave us his life story.   He was in the army, was frank Sinatra's bodyguard, and was almost baptized awhile ago, but didn't. Now he lives there all alone, which is why we were there so long. We were there for forty-five minutes until we managed to get his name and number and left for the correct house, we were really late for the appointment, but they thought nothing of it.   

Also, Saturday night we got a bomb lesson.   It was with a family that we have been trying for weeks trying to get in to see, but the dad was always gone.   That night we taught the restoration and answered a lot of their really good questions. The family now has two copies of the Book of Mormon, five restoration, and one plan of salvation pamphlets.  They also know about   We are going to meet with them next Sunday since the dad, Ian, is away all week. Also, the two people in the picture are the belchers.  Brother Belcher is recent convert off a few years, 2-3, and is the high priest group leader for the ward.  Also, transfers are this week.  We find out Tuesday. 

Friday, February 19, 2016

Elder Hamula (Feb 8, 2016)

We had a three hour long conference with a member of the seventy Saturday.  It was great and made me really look at what I was doing as a missionary and how I could improve.  The main things I am working on are trying to be even more Christlike and allowing the Spirit to be ever present in my life.  This mission has helped me grow and appreciate things all around and really appreciate that this Church really has all the answers.   Also, we are each entitled to revelation for ourselves based on our worthiness and our ability to ask.   That was one of the topics covered in the meeting Saturday.  Nearly all of the revelations given to Joseph Smith were because he was asking questions.   This is a faith that not only allows us to ask questions, but wants us to ask questions.   The phrase "ask and you shall receive, knock and it shall be opened unto you" is repeated so often in the scriptures because it is true.   I have had so many questions answered or issues resolved because I asked.   Even before my mission I would pray that I would know which is the correct answer on a test and I would do the right one in the end.   The problem is that it is so hard to know if I have just got a spiritual impression or if it was one of my own thoughts. In that case I always think back to the Bednar's Mormon messages, I believe they are called "discerning light",.  

Now I have been thinking about how much of self centered lazy old fart I was back home. When I get back home, I am going to work to always being up before 7 and really working on my math and playing the piano.   I really regret not learning the piano.   Also, I watched the video that the sisters showed you, "Come What May and Love It", and it is  a really good video with a great message.  Do the missionaries there have iPads? 

This last week we have had a few a things happen.   The first great thing is that Marie did the baptism interview Sunday and passed.  One of the zone leaders did it and it took a really long time.  It was about forty minutes, because she really likes to talk. Also, the Banning ward bishopric changed completely this last Sunday. Nearly two whole middle row benches were taken up by the new bishop's family and friends.  So we knew something was up. Also, during the Super Bowl it is pretty hard to find and teach.   Nearly every single one of our investigators were unavailable,  one replied to a message of ours asking if we could teach them a lesson saying  "No cause Super Bowl".  From what I heard it was the Broncos who won, right? Against someone who has never once won the Super Bowl at all right?  Also, I think we might be going bowling later today.

I almost forgot, we had shower fixed today.  The water heater broke.   And the one they replaced it with had a water pressure problem.  The first night, before they fixed the problem it was making a ton of noise.   Like the apartment had a ghost in it.  Also, the shower was completely redone, because the downstairs person thought it was our shower that was causing water to go into their ceiling.  It turned out that it was not our shower that was causing the problem but now we got a nice shower with a cool wolf curtain that we got today. While they were fixing it, we had been using the shower in the other apartment that is currently empty, but is still owned by the church.  It was the sisters' apartment, but is empty this transfer.  They had a really good shower.  If we did not
have such a good shower now that they fixed it, I would have been perfectly fine walking over there to use the shower every morning.

Sent from my iPad

Baptism by fire in a hot baptismal font. (Feb 1, 2016)

Yes, we had a baptism!   We had it on Saturday and that is where part of the title comes in.   Jim, who is in the picture,  is an investigator from the north side of the ward.   Elder Van Dyke started teaching him right after I left Banning with Elder Mansfield, who Elder Van Dyke trained.   Then when I got here the ward was split and Jim was taught by Elder Mansfield and Elder Cook.  I hardly met the guy.  Anyway, the baptism started and was going really well except for  a bit of a laughing moment when there was confusion as to which Brother Patterson
was giving the talk and which was performing the baptism.  Anyway, the time came for the actual ordinance to be preformed.   The curtain was opened and the glass was covered in steam.  Then Jim put his foot in and felt the heat.  After a quick check by Brother Patterson who concluded that it indeed was way to hot, It was decided that the cold water was to be turned on and some ice thrown in.  While we waited for it to cool down a few people bore their testimonies. Then we did the baptism.  Afterwards, Jim told us that it felt 3 three times hotter than a hot tub would normally be and that you could have easily boiled some eggs in the water.  That was a laugh, and
it happened because it is usual for the missionaries to just use the hot water because then it would not be so cold.   However, the banning building's baptismal font's heating thing worked really well.

       Anyway we got a new investigator this week! A really good one too!   On Monday, last week, we went over to a member's house in Whitewater because she called us Sunday and told us her neighbor might be interested in being baptized.  She gave us her number and we had been calling her, but since she did not recognize our phone number she never picked up.  Anyway, we went over to the member's house and the member called her for us.  The member had previously told us that the neighbor, Cathy, would not answer the door unless she knew who it was and was expecting them.  So we went over and got the member to call her.   She called her twice, no answer. Later, after we talked with the family a bit, Cathy called back.  So we started talking to her over the member's phone.  This is when she told us that she wanted to be baptized.  So we set up a lesson the next day.  We had the Bishop with us for that lesson,  a really good bishop too,  when we taught the restoration and got her on date for baptism.   And the best part is that later in the week, Friday, while we giving service at the soup kitchen, we got a text from her asking what time her baptism would be since she wanted to invite a Friend, the neighbor member, to her baptism, which is set for March 5.   However, she was not able to make it to church because the wind blew her fence over and her new dog would run away if she left it.   So she did miss my talk.  In case I forgot to mention I had a Talk about teaching with the power and authority of God.  

Also, I must already be acclimating since it is getting really cold and wet.  But, yesterday I got a coat out of the closet that was basically a wearable fluffy pillow.     


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

A Job Offer at Wendy's (Jan 25, 2016)

Just to clarify.   I got a job offer at a Wendy's, but not at Wendy's. That is for later.

Anyway, the missionary broadcast was awesome.  We saw it at the Redlands building right next to the temple, it is really right next to the temple.  We did however get there slightly late because we missed
the turn off the freeway.  However, we did not miss any of the broadcast because we were supposed to be there before it started anyway.   Anyway, I thought the best was Elder Bednar.  More than half my notes were of Bednar's talk.   We also were able to watch the face2face the next day during our dinner break.  That was also really good.  

Currently we have been trying to locate all the less active members in our area.  We have mostly been getting negative responses, but we did get one positive response.  This happened out in white water we were trying all the potential, former and less actives that were on our i pads.   It was literally the last
house before we left.  The guy opened the door, immediately recognized us, and let us in.  He then sat us down and immediately   Also yesterday we went up in the mountains to find a few less actives.
However, we surrendered  after we got to a road that was impossible for us to travel on.  The area was deep backwoods territory. The two places we did find were either an impossible fortress, or not interested at all.  

Anyway the job offer happened Wednesday night.  We were walking into Wendy's with money from member who gave us money for dinner that night since he was in a Book of Mormon class.  We said hey to a guy that was getting out of his car.  We went up to the counter and Elder Franz ordered when the guy came and threw his card on the cornersaying he, a member, was paying for us.   We started talking and he told us about his is own business and he gave us both his card and told  us to contact him after our missions. That was just really cool.  And we were able to use the money we were going to
use for dinner for laundry.  

Sent from my iPad

Attachments area
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The goblin prince died! Snape too! How? (January 18, 2016)

This week has gone by pretty fast except for Thursday.  Wednesday we did weekly planning since Elder Franz was going to go to a meeting Thursday and we did not get the memo to do weekly planning on Friday.  I also fasted that day. Bad Idea.   That night Sister Diaz fed us homemade tacos, really really greasy good tacos.  We were both feeling a bit unwell afterwards, but we moved on. That night we had an awesome lesson with a less active sister who is working on getting to the temple.  We brought with us a less active brother who also wanted to work toward the temple.   We got them both committed to come to church Sunday.   Sister Baker, the returning less active sister, even offered to pick up Brother Brush, the less active Brother, Sunday morning to go to church.   We then finished our day.

That night I was up for a few hours being sick.   So when morning came I had a lot less sleep than normal and was feeling very sick to my stomach.   So instead of biking with Elder Cook while Elder Franz was at the meeting in his area he come to our apartment while I was rehabilitating.  We then tried a few houses using the truck after
I was feeling better. 

Also, this last Friday I went on an exchange with Elder Whitlock, a zone leader, and biked in his area.   He is Spanish speaking so for the two lessons that we had that day I was just sitting next to him while he was talking away in Spanish.  I did not fall asleep doing either of the lessons, which seems to be common when English missionaries go into Spanish land. However, Elder Whitlock did!  It was only for about five seconds and I did not even notice.   The less active member, an older sister, did and woke him thinking it was funny.  I did not even notice until after since she was speaking in Spanish.   Also, that day I realized the main reasons that I would want to live in California later.  If I do the reasons would be: the beach, Disneyland, the lemon and orange trees.  While we were walking that Friday, we went up and picked an orange each.  We were told we could and that orange was sooooo good.

Also, funny story.   One of the members in our ward was a missionary in this area  a while ago and he moved here.  Apparently one time when he and his companion were showing a video to investigating couple both the missionaries AND the investigators fell asleep during the lesson. 

Sounds like classes started at ppcc today, ha ha! Oops. Sorry, I actually kind of miss it, a few parts of it any way.   It sounds like you guys have some interesting classes.   Keep up the good work!

That's all folks

Elder Franz, me, Elder Wilson, Elder Miles,
Elder Mansfield, Elder Cook

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Back to Banning (Jan 11, 2016)

I am now back in Banning.  I was transferred Wednesday with Elder Cook.  He is in the same ward, but we switched companions with the Elders that were already there. We found out Tuesday, the day before, after zone meeting.   A member took us out to eat for lunch after we told her that we were both leaving.  I am now in a two man apartment, the first one that I was in on my mission, with Elder Franz from Idaho.   He is one transfer senior to me and is the district leader. We take below the freeway along with White water and the bench, the big houses along all the major hills to the north of Banning. It is split this way because Elder Cook and his companion are on bikes while we are in the truck.  All the investigators that we currently have are different from the ones I had.  The most in interesting one is Jacob who is actually a less active,  we met with him yesterday.
He is 19 and was hiking around the eastern United States while I was here before, which is why I did not meet him.  He has been back here for the last two months.  

New year's and transfers. And an earth quake (Jan 4 2016)

No I did manage to finish the Book of Mormon cover to cover on New Year's.   We all started 6:00 pm on New Year's Eve and I finished on the Second of January at 9:16 Elder Van Dyke finished about an hour after with Elder Driggs finishing a few hours later.   The Isaiah chapters were the hardest part for all of us while we were just
zipping through the war chapters.   I found a ton of interesting verses that I will work on ponderizing.  I found the scripture reference that says that only men measure time.  I knew it was on there somewhere I just could not find it.   The verse means that it really does not matter how long it took for the earth to be made.

The earth quake happened on Tuesday at 5:30 pm.  We were at a member's home having dinner when just everything started to shake.   It lasted for about half a minute, but I liked it.   We, the elders, just kept eating and enjoying the ride.  Sister Milton made sure to get out from behind the two cabinets that were about 400 pounds each.  

One other thing happened yesterday when we were looking for potential investigators.   We went to a house that said an Ivan lived there, however, a very active family lived there.  They did not even know the person that it said lived there.   Besides that, We had a lesson with one of our investigators, Peggy, and we had two members there with us.  

Also, Elder Driggs bought pepper spray and now we have video of Elder Driggs and Elder Cook being sprayed in face with it.  Apparently it hurts?!

Happy birthday Noah and happy new year! (Dec 28, 2015)

Yes I just saw you, but I have a ton of stuff to report.  One thing is more about the woman I told you about on Christmas.  We had gone to a youth activity because it was the Christmas party so there should have been converts there.  But since there were none we could see, we started to organize our area.  That is when one of the bishop's counselors found us and had us help give a woman a blessing.  She was playing the piano when she started feeling light headed.   After the blessing an ambulance was called and she went off to the hospital.  She is, to my knowledge, fine now.

We also had been organizing our area because we had just taken over the area the day before.   We had heard that we might be becoming the only missionaries in the ward since Wednesday, but we only knew for sure Monday and then the other elders left Tuesday morning.  That is when we got the car and were able to go over our area and put people into sections. 

Tuesday night we got a member to go to a lesson with an investigator who was our only progressing investigator at the time, but he dropped us that night.   However, we then went to a referral who we taught a lesson to and then got on date for baptism. She then went to church.  

 For New Year's Day our mission president is giving us the option to stay in and read the whole Book of Mormon cover to cover within a twenty-four hour period.  There is an option just to make it an ordinary day like any other day and not do the challenge.  However, I am going to take up the challenge. Anyone want to do it with me? We go in at 6:30 pm New Year's Eve do daily planning and then start reading.  And you must be done by the time started on the following day.  You also must be sitting and no lying down.

Apartment photos: