Tuesday, December 3, 2013

November 25 Letter

Before I have any Spirit to ruin, I want to share a really funny story from a J. Golden Kimball talk we were listening to. He was talking about his first mission in the Southern States, where he overheard a group of men talking. "I need to move north to get away from these Mormons," one said. "I'm thinking of heading further east to get away from the Mormons," another said. Each person had somewhere they were going to flee the Mormons. Eventually, Golden couldn't keep it in anymore, and just yelled, "Why don't you go to Hell!? You won't find any Mormons there!"

Well, on that note, now Jerry has a baptismal date too!! Woo-hoo! It's not untilJanuary 12, but still. I'm stoked. We taught them the Doctrine of Christ (pretty much what is taught in 2 Nephi 31, which they read last week), and really went into faith and repentance, and how repentance is really the way we align our will with God's and slowly refine ourselves. It was, as always, a very fun conversation. Then, at the end, we just asked them when they felt they might be ready for baptism and asked them to set a goal. Jerry said he thinks he could be ready after Christmas break. Andrea was, as usual, more hesitant. But even she agreed to specifically pray about that in the Sacred Grove this weekend! Haha in fact, when we asked her to do that, she said, "I will be praying about a lot of things in the grove." Ha, that probably isn't as cool to just read... but it was really cool the way she said it. It's hard to fully show their personalities over emails.

Stephen is also doing really well. We went over and talked to him about the Word of Wisdom. It went really well, and he didn't just accept it, but really, really liked it. Haha the only issue came up because we read through Doctrine and Covenants 89 with him.... and I never realized before that it says barley is for mild drinks. We quickly realized that that was not referring to barley water. Haha he is probably the only person we could have read that with that would have picked out a phrase like that, but he sure as heck did! Haha I think we talked it over well enough with him to explain the whole "line upon line" idea... but we'll see. Unfortunately he didn't come to church yesterday because he got a sinus infection. But we're going over this evening and he invited us over for Thanksgiving! 

Haha Thanksgiving is actually becoming a bit of a drama fest. The ward mission leader made a lightly-enforced rule about a month ago that we should only go to dinner appointments in our respective areas, or at the bare minimum that we don't have all four companionships at the same dinner appointment. Well, despite that, one lady in the ward signed up for all four of us. To make it better, she is literally an hour and a half travel for us each way. So, since we have two other dinners scheduled with investigators that we are actually working with, we ended up cancelling on her... Haha that didn't go over well...... She is pretty upset, because "They aren't even members! And what if they don't even get baptized?" Haha, I don't feel bad at all about our choice, seeing that she'll still have four missionaries over there most of the day... but like I said, drama fest.

Well, this will be my last week with Elder Holmes. He has his visa, and is shipping off to Brazil next Monday! That is the transfer day, anyways, so I should have at least 6 more weeks here in Buffalo, which is great because that will have both Stephen and Jerry's baptism in it, and hopefully Andrea's! 

I feel really pathetic with this email... but this was a pretty pathetic week. Haha we seriously only taught six lessons to investigators, which I believe is my lowest of my whole mission. It is definitely harder when it is pitch-black outside by 4:30, not to mention less than 30 degrees and windy at the warmest part of the day. Haha I miss having a car.... But, all is well in Zion, I suppose! This week should be fantasitc between the appointments we have, and of course our Palmyra trip with the Asians on Saturday! I don't know if I told this already (I might have said it like thirty times by now... so forgive me) but Sister Su, a missionary here from Taiwan, is going to go to all of the sites and give the tours in Mandarin, so we're super excited for it!! It's going to be wonderful!

Also, for anyone else interested, I did the math yesterday and if you read just about 6 pages a day, starting today, you can finish all four Gospels by Christmas :)

I love you, but I don't miss you!
Elder Allen

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