Full-time Missionary

Missionary in the Utah Salt Lake City South Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from August 2015 to August 2017

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Uno Mas Transfero

July 17, 2017

This week... I don't even know what happened.

Tuesday at 4 pm we met a member of the missionary department proselyting division—Ben—for dinner at Texas Roadhouse. A couple members of the missionary department wanted to go out with us and some Zone leaders, so we all met at separate places for dinner to discuss the plan to proselyte from 6-9 with them. So we spent all evening with Ben and showed him how SLCS Missionaries do it. We worked him to death, taught 3 solid lessons and picked up 2 New investigators.

Wednesday we got together with President and Sister Lansing and 3 people from the Missionary Department to discuss how Tuesday evening went, and to plan a(nother) special Mission Leadership Council. We concluded that the topic best suited for our missions needs is planning. So, Thursday we had a special MLC run by the Missionary Department focused on how to make planning more effective. It was pretty solid! The Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders all loved it. 

Friday we had the last round of Sister Training Leader and Zone Leader Accountability meetings, Saturday we finalized transfers with President Lansing, and took care of stuff at the office. 

Sunday a bishop came up to us and introduced someone with an unbaptized child, so we now have a solid baptism coming up in August. We will pick up the daughter as an investigator on Wednesday. We were up pretty late last night getting everything ready for transfers, and this morning we sent out all the documents to the Zone Leaders. I will be spending my last 6 Weeks here in the Sandy West Stake! I realized today that Elder Kaka is my 2nd—out of 15 companion that I've kept for more than one transfer. I guess that's how you can tell if a missionary is trouble! The mission has been awesome thus far. Changes me daily. If you haven't been on one yet and still can, 'just do it.'

Love,
-Elder Ray

Elders Ray & Kaka with Ben, from the Missionary Department Proselyting Division

Happy Fourth!

July 10, 2017

Hello everyone!

One more busy week! So last Saturday in our weekly meeting with the Mission President, he was pretty fired up at how our mission is performing. We talked a ton about how a lot of missionaries are being lazy and not working as hard as they can, so we decided to hold a special MLC meeting on the 4th. So for 2 hours on Tuesday morning we held a meeting with all the Zone leaders and Sister training leaders. It was a pretty fiery meeting. Basically it was just us and the president grilling everyone, setting expectations that have been forgotten and lost over the past year. All in attendance recognized the need to step up and we're all on board. Later that evening, each of the zones presented the expectations to their missionaries in their Zone meetings. Wednesday to Thursday we did exchanges with the Draper Zone leaders, and Thursday to Friday we had exchanges with the South Jordan Zone Leaders. 
Friday afternoon was weird. We had a meeting for all the missionaries who begin their last transfer next week. The missionaries I go home with. Basically the purpose of the meeting is to be sure everyone sprints to the end. It was weird to be there, and even weirder to be the one in charge of the meeting and the training. I was training myself essentially. Everyone was laughing pretty good about that.

Saturday we met with President again and worked a lot on transfers. We got most everything done, and President told me what's happening with me for my last transfer. It's nice knowing what's happening!

Yesterday elder Kaka and I slammed the pavement and picked up a few new investigators and set up a ton of appointments. Life is good, the mission is the best. The church is true. 

       Love 
  Elder Ray


With the South Jordan Zone




God Speaks to Us

July 3, 2017

“This is the principle on which the government of heaven is conducted--by revelation adapted to the circumstances in which the children of the kingdom are placed” -Joseph Smith
It has been amazing throughout my mission to see how the lord has spoken to me. One of the greatest restored truths is that the Heavens are opened, that God speaks to us, and that he speaks to a living prophet. 

This was a great week, busy as usual. We had an MLC meeting, did a couple exchanges, and went to the Salt Lake temple with the departing missionaries. Crazy to think we're winding up another transfer. 

Here's a couple pics: 

These first two are missionaries who served in the mission a year ago and now live in our stake:

Departing Missionary Salt Lake Temple Trip

With ex-SLC South Missionaries



Seth's Video Email

June 26, 2017

Hola todos. I've decided to send a video instead of an written email. I'm lazy today.


video



At the Draper Temple

With Brother Manu

Setting Mission Records

June 19, 2017

Hola familia!

It's been a good week. Had a baptism on Monday, and just cranked out some finding. We found a bunch of new investigators and a ton of potential this week. We did service for a potential investigator who comes to church almost every week.

We've been working a lot on some big things for the mission. This week as a mission we picked up 121 new investigators. Our online records go back to the beginning 2015, the highest we ever hit before was 107. Setting records!

Have a good week. Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there. 

Love,
-Elder Ray

Elders Ray and Kaka attending a mission baptism

Working hard (?) at the mission office

Monday, June 12, 2017

Elder Bednar - Amazing Experience

June 12, 2017

Wow... time is a weird thing at this point in my mission. 

Tuesday was transfer day. Elder Morris, Elder Kaka, and I woke up and went to the Frontrunner train station at 7:45 am to wait for the new missionaries to come from the MTC. We placed a couple Pamphlets and BOMs while waiting, and put someone on date who we could refer to missionaries in his area. The office staff showed up shortly, as well as President and Sister Lansing with two elders they picked up from the airport the previous night who flew in from the Mexico MTC. At 8 sharp all the new missionaries showed up, and the Transfer Day madness began. A day of craziness. We spent the Night with the departing missionaries at President Lansing's home, and they shipped home early Wednesday morn. 

We spent a lot of this week getting ready for a fireside that was on Sunday where Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles would come train us for 3 hours. We wanted to take a Mission Photo with Elder and Sister Bednar, and so we needed a lot of risers to be able to fit 160 people into a picture in a church building. That was a ton of work, but we made it happen. During the course of the week we met with a few of the Zone leaders and Sister Training Leaders to set expectations for the transfer and answer any questions they had. It was just a crazy week in general. 

Sunday was the grand finale. We left right after our last sacrament meeting and grabbed a quick bite to eat at the apartment, then headed to South Jordan to get things ready. We got to the Building at about 3:30 and started positioning the risers on the stage and in front of it, with chairs where they needed to be so that when the time came, taking the picture would be efficient. We had 4 companionships of Zone Leaders show up at 3:45 to start ushering for missionaries when they started arriving, which happened pretty quick. The meeting starts at 5, we told the mission to be seated reverently by 4:30, so they all started showing up around 4:00. Haha. Everyone wants good seats to see the Apostle. We made sure that on the stand, every seat had a label on it of who was going to sit where, and each had a water bottle with an agenda. At 4:40, Elder Kaka and I went to the Stake High Council Room with the counselors to the mission president and waited for President and Sister Lansing to show up with Elder and Sister Bednar. About 5 minutes later they did. We all arose as Elder and Sister Bednar walked around and shook our hands. We met with them for about 10 minutes, talking about the needs of the mission, then he said "Lets Go To Work!" And we entered the Chapel. We all took our places on the stand. I was Conducting, and so I sat next to Elder Bednar, who was presiding, and right when we sat down he leaned over to me and said "let's get started." So we did. I got up and announced the agenda, then for 3 hours we were instructed by an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. It was an amazing experience, the spirit was so strong entire time. The Revelation I received was perfectly tailored to me. After the meeting, Elder Kaka and I were the first out of the congregation to shake his hand, then we ran back to the stage to direct everyone as they came back to take their place on the risers for the picture. It all went very smoothly. It was a ton of work, but it was worth it. President Lansing called us this morning and told us how impressed Elder Bednar was with it all. It was by far one of the most amazing experiences of my life. 
The church is true! Jesus Christ is Alive! He knows us perfectly. 

Love,
-Elder Ray

Elder and Sister Bednar with the Great Salt Lake City South Mission

With President and Sister Lansing

With the Departing Missionaries

With the Newly-arrived Missionaries

A new poster to put up in their church buildings






Nuevo CompaƱero

June 5, 2017

Ok... it's been quite a crazy last week of the transfer. 
Tuesday I woke up at about 3 am puking like a hose. Threw up about 5 times between 3am and 10am. So, I went and stayed at our newly released senior couples home all day long, and slept on their couch all day. Didn't throw up at all there, that was good... elder Morris found splits to do what we needed, he picked me up at 9 and brought me home.

Wednesday I wasn't feeling nauseous anymore, but was absolutely exhausted all day. We went to Sandy "All District Meeting" (all district meetings are the same as Zone meetings, long story short Zone meetings have been done away with in the world due to travel limitations, of which we don't have any, so elder Christensen of the presidency of the 70 said we can do "all district meetings.")

Thursday we went on exchanges with Elder Kaka and Elder Manarin, the Sandy Zone Leaders, and we ended early Friday.

Friday at Noon elder Morris and I met Elder Kelley-the departing elder-at the trax station and we headed downtown for the Departing Missionary Salt Lake Temple Trip. We got there about an hour early so we did some other things in the temple before we did a session with President and Sister Lansing and sister Tulip, who they drove downtown with. The Salt Lake Temple is AMAZING! The most beautiful building I have ever seen, inside and out. If you haven't been... you need to go. It was a great experience. After the Temple, president and sister Lansing took us to one of the nicest restaurants in salt lake, 'The Roof,' on top of the old Hotel Utah. Crazy. After we got home at about 8 we met with Ashley for her baptismal interview. She passed! She is awesome. Our district leader, Elder Henley, performed the baptismal interview. After the interview we told him and his companion that we would pick them up at 9:30 and take them to the mission home the next morning. That scared him a lot, because the new assistant gets brought to the mission office Saturday morning, so he thought it was going to be him.

Saturday morning we picked them up and took them to the mission home. We had elder Dutton—elder Henley's companion—call elders Kaka and Manarin to have them "come pick them up". We had elder Dutton tell them that elder Henley was going to be at the home all day and elder Dutton needed to get back to his area. Elder Kaka got to the mission home and knocked on the door, we said "thanks for picking up elder Dutton. We lied. Elder Kaka, come with us." And we pulled him in to be my new companion, to be AP2.  We spent all day Saturday finalizing transfers, then welcomed elder Kaka to the squad with some Texas longhorn steakhouse. We took elder Kaka back to his area just before 5, and after dinner elder Morris and I worked on some transfer stuff some more.

Sunday was church, and Sunday night Ashley was baptized! It was awesome. Then Sunday at 8:30 we picked up elder Kaka and all his stuff and moved him into our apartment. We worked till about 2:00am on transfer stuff, then got up at about 6 this morning and went to the office to finish transfers, and got everything sent out to the Zone Leaders. It's been crazy. But a blast. Life's good, the church is true. I am learning so much. "I'm proud to be a member of this great church!"-Legrand Richards

Love,
-Elder Ray

Ashley's Baptism

Departing Temple Trip


View from The Roof

Seth with Elders Morris and Kaka