Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 30, 2011

This week has been such a blur. We have been so busy. We have found a lot of great new people to teach, and our ward is getting fired up. Tracting has been interesting this week--we were offered a chihuahua by a family of former investigators (seriously...the family was trying to pay us to take her), and we stumbled upon a personal marijuana farm inside someone's front gate. We had an awesome meeting with the first counselor in the stake presidency about helping the wards get fired up for doing member missionary work. And to top it all off, we had the best carne asada tacos I have ever tasted. All in all, an awesome week.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

August 23, 2011

With Elder Kidd at Laisha's baptism on Sunday!

August 23, 2011

I heard about the earthquake today at Vons from the cashier when I told her I was from Virginia. That's so bizarre. How is it that I have been in Cali for over a year, just waiting for an earthquake, and all of a sudden Virginia decides to get in on it?

Oh, I completely forgot to talk about zone conference! It was so great. Elder Gibbons is an amazing teacher.... [He] taught us about how to work with members, and he taught us something very interesting. So we talked about the phases of missionary work, and who has the priesthood keys to direct each phase of the work. Teaching, baptizing, and confirming non-members is obviously directed by the mission president. Retention, activation, and preparing for the temple is directed by the bishop and stake president. The temple ordinances are directed by the keys that the temple president holds. Then he asked us if we knew who had the keys for finding new investigators.

Surprise: it's the bishop! The bishops are responsible for preparing and finding new investigators for full-time missionaries to teach. It was really interesting. That is another reason why finding through members is so effective. It's not just a statistical phenomenon that we as missionaries can take advantage of. It is a direct blessing of finding new investigators in the Lord's way--through those with the priesthood keys (D&C 128:11, D&C 104:16). God blesses us when we work with the ward council and members to find because that is how He designed it.

August 16, 2011

We are doing great. Lucy was confirmed on Sunday, which was great. Her daughter, Laisha, passed her baptismal interview on Sunday before Church and is going to be baptized this Sunday! We are super excited. We are hoping to get the Primary really involved in her baptism (children's choir?). Our area has been just exploding. I haven't been teaching this many people since I was with Elder Snyder. I definitely wouldn't mind staying in San Juan Capistrano the rest of my mission....

We found this really great investigator yesterday, as well. We have been going through old referrals that have already been contacted and we came across a referral from March named Monica who, according to the referral record, went to the Mormon Battalion Visitor's Center in San Diego and requested a missionary visit. We called and set up an appointment, and then later that day we got a text from the San Juan English elders, who said that the night before they had talked to a lady named Monica who lived at the same address and had the same phone number. It was such an amazing miracle. I was away from the area on exchanges, but Elder Kidd said the first lesson yesterday went really well, and she wants us to come back tomorrow (it would have been today, but she was working all day).

We are getting ready for our zone conference next week with Elder Larry Gibbons. It should be great! We are working hard to help the zone get going, and our ward is really catching on to the spirit of missionary work. We're hoping to help all of our recent converts to get temple recommends so that they can go to the temple before summer is over (the Newport Beach announced that they would have their baptistry open all summer long every day all day for anyone who just wanted to walk in and do baptisms). Did you know that 90% of converts of go to the temple within a month of their baptism remain active and faithful? Can't beat those odds.

August 9, 2011

With Elder Kidd and Lucy at her baptism Sunday night, 4 weeks and 1 day after the first time we met her!