So this morning was district meeting. I really am loving how close our district is and I think its helping everyone be motivated because we are all missionaries but we are all friends. So we had studies and I had planned on giving a training on something but then decided to do it on something different like the morning of, my new topic was my personal mission motto which is "Find the One." It was pretty good and we had a really good discussion about it and I felt the spirit which is always a good sign. After that we went and got food like always. We also went on exchanges with the White Oak elders, I went with Elder Burila in White Oak and Elder Maedgen took Elder Arvidson.
Elder Burila and I had a pretty good afternoon. First we talked to these two ladies who are Apostolic, I’d never heard of that before but their basic beliefs are based on the New Testament apostles. Well, we talked to them for a little bit and they were asking a lot of questions about our church and some of the differences, but we came around and eventually got to teach them the Restoration. They weren’t really interested in wanting to learn more or act on it but they were very interested in the First Vision. After that we went and saw Greg. Greg has had a rough life and has been in and out of jail and stuff so he’s looking to make his life better. He loves Jesus and wants to know the truth. We taught him the Restoration a while ago and we did a touch up of it again and talked about the Book of Mormon. He seemed really sincere and it was a pretty good lesson.
We had dinner with this really sweet older couple and then went over to the church since it was mutual for White Oak. We picked up one of the priests and took him out for a bit to try and get one of the less active priests to come to the activities. This kid isn’t really into the church at all, and we went and talked to him and he was all for it, but never came. The rest of the night we just went tracting and knocked some doors. It’s starting to get dark here so early and it’s the worst because people here just go to bed when its dark, not when it’s bed time.
This morning after studies we went and knocked some doors and it was interesting. The second door we knocked a lady came out and was literally on drugs, she said we could come back another time which was ok with us. Then we knock some more and didn’t really get anyone to answer. Well, we did one side of the street and then had to go and meet Elder Maedgen. Well, this lady on the other side of the street was watching us from her window and waiting for us to come over. When we didn’t she came out and ran down the sidewalk and stopped us and talked to us about Jesus. She was just so grateful that we came to her, well a couple minutes in she was telling us about how those Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses always come around and she wasn't having any of it. But, we were ok because we were from the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-day Saints, hahaha! So, we asked if we could come back when we had some time and she said yes. They went back later that day and she was not happy to find we were Mormons, lol.
We did some weekly planning today after I got back since I’m going to Richmond tomorrow and we won’t have as much time. We had a couple lessons this afternoon too, one of them was the Dembys. We went over and saw the kids and talked about the video from Gordon B. Hinkley "Lessons I Learned as a Boy." Then we went and saw another less active family and had a little message with them. She works every day and has really bad shifts so they don’t come to church, but her son is a teacher and it's was actually really great because we got him to come to mutual with another boy in the ward and heard that he loved it.
The rest of our night was spent with Laura and Pam. Idk if you remember Laura but she’s the one that had a sick mom who we were trying to baptize. Well she moved back into our area with her sister Pam and Pam has been investigating the church on and off. So first we went over and had a lesson with Jason and taught Laura the Restoration as one of her new members lessons. Then we came back later with Brother Witt and helped them put these huge shelves they have together. Man it was tough! The stores make it so difficult sometimes. But, it was fun and after we got to have a lesson with them and it was really great, I could totally see Pam joining the church.
So today was weekly planning and we had to get it done in the morning because I left at 3 to go to Richmond for mid-mission meeting. Mid-mission was awesome, it was all the elders that came out with me and there are no sisters going home with us so it was just the boys. We got there and had dinner and just talked for about an hour, then we had a little meeting in the mission home that was really good. We started out and talked about some of the highlights of our missions and then President Smith talked about the parable of the 10 virgins and we talked the oil in our lamps and if we have enough for the rest of our journey. It was really good and we talked about setting some goals that will help us get through the rest of our missions successfully. The rest of the night we went downstairs and just hung out, it was fun to just talk about stuff that’s been going on and relax for a night.
This morning we got up and went and played some basketball outside President’s house. It was a ton of fun and we just shot around a bit. After that we all got ready and had breakfast and then went to a church and had a meeting. Mostly about setting more goals and how we want to be for the rest of our missions. It was really awesome and at the end we had a testimony meeting of all us elders, amazing spirit, I love those meetings.
When I got back I was really happy to see Elder Maedgen. He did a killer job here in Hartwood this week with me being gone for 2 days and we had a lesson set up for like right when I got back. The lesson was with Rosa a lady we had taught a while ago and she has kinda wanted to start having lessons again! We had an awesome Restoration lesson with her and she was really into it, I think she can be baptized for sure!
The rest of the night we didn’t do too much, we just knocked a bunch of doors and found like 4 referrals for the Spanish missionaries.
This morning we were supposed to have some service but we got there 30 minutes late because we had the time wrong and so we just showed up and got to eat donuts. After that we went home and finished our studies and then ate some lunch. Our afternoon was kinda interesting. We went over and saw Mike again and gave him a blessing so that he could feel better. This isn’t the Mike that was almost baptized, a different one. Well he is a shaman and does all kinds of crazy stuff and we took Brother Boyd over and gave him a blessing cause he’s ill. It was good and we think he felt the spirit but it was a really strange lesson to say the least.
After that we went over to see Rosa but she wasn’t there so we called her and set up a time for next week. After that we went and saw the Demarees. They went on a trip this last week out West and saw some of the church history sights on their way. They loved it and we got to talk to them about it. They’re a great family they just need to come to church. This evening after dinner we went over to see Danny and Stephanie and had a little lesson with them it was really fun and Steph is starting to get more involved. They’re super sweet. After that we went and tracted a little bit in a complex and found a guy named Ryan. He’s atheist, but he is also really nice and listened to us. He really doesn't believe in God but he said he would listen to us and maybe try it out. That was pretty much our night and it was awesome.
So, I woke up today feeling sick, I think I caught something last night and it’s not fun. We had a lot of stuff going on at church since there was a death in our ward and there are a lot of things going on that are moving forth the missionary work here. It was a good Sunday to say the least.
After that we had some lessons. We went and saw some people in Old Forge and had some good lessons down there, then we went and saw Angela and her kids. We had a good lesson with them on the Restoration and they understand it all, the spirit was there, but they just don’t really have the motivation to switch from their church. They don’t see the differences in authority and don’t follow the Holy Ghost when they recognize it. We had dinner with the Altorfers and that was a good time the we went to the Leonard's. They’re really great and are still making progress evert time we go over. Great week, hopefully this week is just as good!