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

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Peace Out Draper.

February 22, 2016

The weather this week was awesome. Reminded me of home... It was in the high 50s nearly every day except for one random day that it poured, then hailed, then snowed for a couple hours. And today when it decided to be snowing when we woke up. Tuesday we had district meeting and were surprised when President and Sister Chambers showed up... But they brought lots of snacks so it was totally okay.

We went on two exchanges this week. The first one I went to the other area with elder Lund from Texas. He has been out about 4 months and is a good missionary, just... Shy. Haha. The second was with Elder Mestre from France. He has technically been on his mission for 6 months just like me, but the first three were in France waiting for his visa before he came to the MTC.

Wednesday night we split up, elder brogan went out with a Ward on some visits and I ran a mutual activity for a Ward that is going to send out all their youth in 'mini missions'. It was a blast. Working with the youth is so much fun since I basically still am one. I taught them the basics of being a missionary, then taught them how to teach the plan of salvation. Then made them all roleplay it. It was a blast and the spirit was so strong. Awesome experience.

D. had a work emergency and had to go in so he canceled our lesson. Also he didn't come to church for the same reason. We have a lesson tonight... If he cancels I'm going by anyways. Ha.

Saturday morning on exchanges with elder Mestre, we talked on Baptism and The Gift Of The Holy Ghost at a kid's baptism which was neat, then we also got to stand in as the father confirmed him a member and gave him the gift of the Holy Ghost. Convert or not, the power of God truly is manifest when ordinances are performed by proper authority as we read in D&C 84:20. I am so grateful that power is restored to the earth! Saturday evening I had to take elder Mestre to practice singing with the sisters and elder fehoko, all four of them were gonna sing at a missionary fireside Sunday. But, elder fehoko was 'sick' and didn't want to do it. So, I got roped into it. So I had one practice to sing in front of too many people. You should all know I don't sing. Also, I had a solo part. In Spanish. I don't speak Spanish.

Whelp we found out today that I am getting transferred to West Jordan! I'll miss so many things about draper... The people... The food...The car... The mountains... The car... I won't have a car in WJ. Bummer. But it's where I need to be and I'm excited to work there! Have a killer week everyone!

-Elder Ray

Elder Ray enjoying some Utah winter sun

President and Sister Chambers (center, back) with Seth's District

Sunday, February 21, 2016

The Most Correct Book

February 15, 2016

This week started off with a bang! After pday ended Monday, we decided to swing by D.'s house. He and his girlfriend have been super busy with meetings and running Texas Roadhouse so we haven't been able to meet with them but when we knocked, he answered and invited us in without hesitation. We were able to teach D., his girlfriend C., and one of his daughters, N.. So that is two new investigators! We have another lesson setup on Thursday and they plan on coming to church this weekend as well.

We were able to take M., who we have been working with for a while and is now almost 2 months sober, to temple square this week as well. We mainly went for the new first vision video in the church history museum which was rad but also walked around a bit. It has been so awesome to see his spirit slowly returning to him as he has started doing what's right again.

We had a lesson with J., in which we planned on dropping him due to his lack of progression. But, we were prompted to not drop him and realized that he has been prepared by the Lord. We came to that decision when we started being really bold with him, calling him to repentance and while he wasn't accepting commitments other than reading the Book of Mormon, he was not getting offended. A sure sign he is prepared. We helped break down many walls that were holding him back. He is getting closer and closer!

We spoke in one of our wards yesterday on the Book of Mormon. I covered the what and the why of the Book of Mormon and elder Brogan covered the How and the when, to really stress the importance of the book. It really was a book written and brought forth in these days for our benefit. These scriptures are “profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” (2 Timothy 3:16–17.)

We read in 3rd Nephi chapter 21 that the Book of Mormon will be the tool used to gather Israel. Verses 5 and 6 say that 'when these works and the works which shall be wrought among you hereafter shall come forth from the Gentiles, unto your seed which shall dwindle in unbelief because of iniquity; if they will not harden their hearts, that they may repent and come unto me and be baptized in my name and know of the true points of my doctrine, they may be numbered among my people, O house of Israel.

It is true. We know the Book of Mormon is the most correct of any book on the earth and that we will grow nearer to our father in Heaven by reading it than by reading any other book. So just read it!

Hope everyone has an awesome week!

-Elder Ray

ps - We found some couches to furnish our apartment!

Elder Brogan

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Coordination, Lessons, and Making an Impact

February 8, 2016

This week we have spent a lot of time trying to get the efforts of the wards and stake coordinated to be most efficient in our missionary work. It has been really cool to see it all come together. We had exchanges with the zone leaders this week, I ended up going to the YSA stake with elder Kim for this exchange. It was fun being with an old companion again!

We were able to have another lesson with J., in which we were able to realize the Holy Ghost has testified to him that the Book of Mormon is true, but something still is holding him back. With the help of the member that attended the lesson with us that has know J. for awhile, we were able to figure out that Jeff's main concern is his family, who are all active members of the Catholic religion. For our next lesson we plan on helping him to understand 3 Nephi 13:33-34 and having the faith to 'seek the kingdom of God and his righteousness.'

We were also able to meet with D., another of our investigators. We committed him to come to church and he said he would since he had work off (which never happens... The dude is so busy between a full time day job, weekend truck driving job, and flight school...) but he didn't show up which is too bad.

K.-less active- broke his bike again so I fixed it for him, and we will probably help him move since he is planning on it. Anyways it felt like a successful week, we were able to make an impact in a number of people's lives which is what we ultimately try to do as representatives of Jesus Christ.

Have a great week!

-Elder Ray

The Draper Zone

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Great Gatsby

February 1, 2016

It has been a productive week. We have spent a lot of time trying to get real time correlation visits set up with each ward each week, and it's finally coming together. We know that when we get the stake's missionary work organized and united, miracles will happen.

We have still been trying to meet with D. and his family but haven't had much luck. Working in the restaurant business is time consuming, and they have been out of town for a bit so we still haven't gotten anywhere with them.

We went on exchanges on Tuesday/Wednesday, I went to the Draper Meadows Stake with elder Fehoko. Being on foot is so much different than being in a car. In a way it is better because it is way easier to talk to everyone you see but it takes so much more time to cover any distance. While there I was able to help teach two of his investigators, both of which were baptized on Saturday.

We were finally able to set up another lesson with J., and found a member to come who is going to become (if J. accepts) his Book of Mormon reading mentor. J. isn't progressing and isn't willing to come to church at this time so we will have him read the BOM to gain his testimony.

Our 9yo investigator Ashlyn is doing great, she is learning really well and loves when we come every Sunday night. It will be a really neat experience for the whole family when she is able to be baptized and sealed as a family when the adoption process is complete.

This area is always full of interesting people. We knocked on one of the huge houses at the top of our stake to find they were members and a great family, but they told us about their neighbor a little bit... A single man living alone (his mansion is big enough for 200 people to comfortably live in) in this castle, who is very nice but no one rarely sees him. He pays for the water for most of the people on the street and did free landscaping for his neighbors when they built their homes. They described him as the 'Great Gatsby'. Needless to say we knocked and no one answered, but it would be cool to meet him and share the gospel with him!

Saturday while driving to a bishop's house we saw a man outside snow blowing his sidewalks. Only, he didn't have a snow blower, he only had a leaf blower that barely ran... We looked at all the progress he had made and it was the equivalent of trying to sweep the snow off your sidewalk with the butt end of a broomstick. So, we stopped and asked if we could help him. He told us to ask 'him' and pointed to a guy in his late 20s early 30s smoking on the doorstep. When we asked him, after about 20 seconds without a reply--which gave us time to realize with how red his eyes were and brown his index and middle fingers were, he was blazed out of his mind--he told us he would grab the shovels. So, we shoveled their entire driveway and sidewalks. When we were done we asked if we could share a message but they said they were already members, attended church every week, and needed to hit up the dollar menu at McDs. I guess we will have to catch them another time.

Lots of interesting things this past week for sure.

-Elder Ray

Draper zone after the world wide broadcast

Draper Temple during a little snow storm:

"Just a bit of fun"