Monday, December 23, 2013

December 23, 2013

So let's see... Last thing I told you about was the mission temple trip and that we took a mission photo, right? I think so. It was pretty cool to be honest. Then afterwards we had our email time, and then after that we took zone pictures! That was really fun. I put some of the, on Facebook, but the quality isn't the best. I'm going to see if I can get copies of the originals to send home. 

Then we went and started the Nativity thing with our convert! Which I don't think I have explained, so I'll give a brief summary:
We have an 8 piece nativity set (maybe 7, I don't remember) and we are dropping off one piece a night, secretly, with a little description of that figures role in the birth of the savior of the world. So yea, we have been doing that.

Thursday we had "The Meeting"
That's what president Toone called it! Basically it was all of the Mission Leadership Council (the Zone Leaders and the Sister Training Leaders) and about 20
other missionaries that were invited to come to this meeting with Brother Lee Donaldson of the Missionary Department (also the mission president from The District 2) they talked about how to better use Facebook for enhancing our own area, and kinda threw down on the idea of teaching people in other places. It was interesting, because I have yet to be able to really have success with Facebook in my own area.  Probably because not many people here have Facebook! They don't have internet or smart phones, so why have a Facebook? But I'm going to try my best to use it the way Salt Lake, and really church headquarters, wants us to. If they want us to do
something one way, and I try my hardest to do it like that, The Lord will provide the rest, right? I'm praying for that.

Then on the way home, I got a U of O flag from this flag salesman. It was $15, couldn't pass it up (he didn't have any Blazer, Braves, or BYU ones, Oregon was my fourth choice)

We have someone on date for this weekend!  He's this super cool guy who is from Chiapas Mexico. He is here living with a member family and working so he can send money home to his family in Mexico. He's super nice, and it's really funny how he is trying to learn English.  Quick story about him:  This past Sunday, we were in gospel principles and they ran out of books, so I pulled up the book on my hastening device, and had him follow along. While I was paying attention to the class, he had gotten out of the Gospel Library app, and onto my Facebook! He was just scrolling through my newsfeed asking who people were. Elder Aranibar and I were laughing so hard. But yea, he is a good guy.

Sunday night we had a Christmas celebration, which was as really cool. What they did was like sing a hymn, and read a part of the story of Jesus birth as recorded in Luke, and then sing a hymn that pertains to that part of the story, then read some more, then another hymn, and so on. It was awesome. The missionaries had the final song, El Cristo Es (or He is the Christ I think in English). It was super good, it's a really powerful song.
Finally after that we went had a meeting with our new Ward Mission Leader. He's really excited and ready to go! I'll miss our old one, but he's been super busy with work, and he's been the ward mission leader for 3 years already, I think. It was his time.

Well I'm excited to talk to you all on Christmas, and I have only been approved to use Skype, not Google+, just so you know. We were thinking around 11Am Arizona time, 10am there, if that's okay? Just let me know.
Love you all so much, and I love my mission! I don't think I say that enough. It's super awesome here.
P.S. Thanks for all of the Christmas Cards! I wish I had time to reply to you all individually, but I just don't have the time! Or the stamps...

The Carter Family: I hope all is well and that Ryan is loving his mission! We email back and forth pretty often, and he seems to be doing great. Hopefully the rest of the family is well and not sick this time of year

The Vorkink Family: Loved the card! Shout out to the Oregon beach in some of those pictures. I can definitely Tell that Sarah is enjoying herself in the picture in San Fran by the roses. Can't believe Eric is a freshman and LuLu is a teenager. I feel like I haven't been gone that long. Hopefully Annika is still the best goalie.

Mike and Rebecca Allen: I loved the calendar card thing. The picture made me laugh so hard! It's just adorable. I hope all is well, and that the Giants have a better season next year, yea?

Peterson Family: Awesome picture of Jake! I personally like the one where he is climbing a palm tree... ;) but you all look wonderful. Joe looks huge as always, and Emily and Anna look precious. I get to talk to Jake pretty regularly, and it's always awesome. Love that kid.

Grandma and Grandpa Weight: The deck looks like it could use a good staining. Call up my dad for that, okay? Hahaha just kidding! You look great in the picture, and from what I can tell all seems well.

Neal Family: Love the picture! I can't ever get over how tall Hayden is... And now Olivia! I think she's taller than me... I need to take a moment and mentally accept that... Okay we're good. You all look great and Hayden and I get to talk pretty often, and I love the example he's been in my life! He's been my best friend for as long as I can remember, and I'm eternally grateful for him and you all, his wonderful family. Also, brother Neal, don't worry, if you were afraid I never ate at your home back in Oregon, I can assure you the Spanish speaking people or Arizona are feeding me quite well...

Andrew and Shannon: I think that quote will get as close as I can get to the Grinch. Actually, it is as close as I will get. Don't worry, the essentials kit has already saved my life multiple times. I mean, the empty lead case came in handy when our investigator needed a tiny case to hold sand, and the rubber band has provided for a nice weapon against the chihuahuas of Arizona. The war is still raging on, but they have had it too good for too long... Also Shannon, the Blondies were amazing. Loved them to death! And I actually Love that Owlet shirt so much. Such a cool design and color.

Tingey Family: the Christmas card before the actual Christmas card was nice, and I do miss that jello, that's for sure. I'll wait to see the card before I say anything about how the family looks, who knows what could have happened, I mean Joel is a chemist right? Sketch. Hahaha just kidding. I'm sure all is well with your family.
I hope that is all of the Christmas cards I got and that I didn't miss anyone! I love you all and am so grateful for the opportunity to have you all in my life!

December 17, 2013 Arizona Tempe Mission, the Greatest Ever

Well it has been a crazy awesome past few days, so I think I'll focus on that... Mainly because the first few days of the week (Monday-Thursday) kinda stunk. We didn't have a ton of success missionary wise the first few day. But whatever, just a rough patch, IT CAN'T GET ME DOWN. 

So Friday we had weekly planning, which was super fun this time. We really didn't do anything crazy fun or awesome or anything, but it was just a good time. Everyone in our zone gets along with everyone else so well, I love it. 

Never pass up taking a picture with a goat named night train
Then on Saturday we had the chivo. It was super good. We went to a members house and roasted a goat, and the meat was pretty good. Then later that night we had a Spanish stake activity, it was like this music thing, and our zone (the Spanish speakers) sang a medley of Christmas songs. It was super cool, and President Toone was there, and he liked it so much that he asked us to perform it in front of the whole mission on Monday! It was awesome. 

Then on Sunday we had a super awesome day too. We went to Church, which is always good, and then went with some people and went to the Frietz's house for dinner. They made really good Enchiladas and beans. Mexican food is so yummy... Anyway, then that night we went to the Mesa Community College Institute Building and had a Mission President's Fireside there.... WITH THE WHOLE MISSION. It was so awesome! All 205 missionaries in the mission were there. Talk about a powerful spirit right? It was so amazing. Then we went over to the transfer building and chit chatted and stuff. It was so amazing, like words can't describe. So there at the transfer building, we found out we would be housing the Zone leaders and another companionship from Maricopa Zone. We thought that meant that we would have 8 people staying in our house for the next 2 days (Sunday night and Monday night). But we were wrong. It was actually a tri-panionship too. So we had 9 people, and 2 showers. Ugh it was so bad.

So on Monday we had a Mission Christmas Party! It was an all day thing at a stake center in Tempe. It was super duper sweet. The bad part is we had to get there at 7 in the morning... Which means we had to leave at 6:30... Which means we had to get up at 5:10 so everyone could shower and get ready.... That part really stunk. Especially because Sunday night we didn't get home till around 10:30, so we didn't get to bed till 11ish. The missionary schedule stinks sometimes. But then we got to the place at 7am and we had breakfast as a mission! It was so much fun. Then we went into the Chapel and had a talk to us by Stake President Robert Laney. His talk was amazing. Simply great. He talked about the difference between being healed and being cured through Christ.
He told this amazing story, and I'll paraphrase: "A man with a relatively young family (one kid on a mission, the rest younger) had cancer and was given blessings saying he would be healed. He was able to see his son come home from his mission but later died. For a long time, the person who gave the blessing (who ended up being the stake president speaking to us, he just didn't say at first) was confused as to why he felt prompted to say he would be healed, when the cancer killed the man. Later, the stake president realized the difference between being Healed, and Cured. He was healed because his Christlike attributes have grown. His marriage and family got stronger. He was healed, but not cured of the cancer." Pretty cool story! I really liked his talk. It reminded me of Spencer Hardy. My prayers go out to the family. 

Christmas Lights at the Mesa Temple
So then after that we had the Mesa Temple President come and talk to us about ordinances in the temple, and things like that. It was good, but it was basically the same thing we heard at stake conference.... Then we had lunch, and then we did this survey thing to get to know the missionaries in the mission more. Then we had a testimony meeting for all of the missionaries  and that was really good, but it went really long (2 hours) and got really personal at times.... Too personal. And then we had dinner and then we finished off the night with a talent show of sorts. It was an assortment of musical numbers, and it was really good. We read the story of the Saviors birth in Luke as a mission. Well actually there is this missionary who has a really great voice-- like movie preview voice guy good-- and so he read it to us. It was super great. So then we had this skit where Santa came up and called out some of the missionaries from the Naughty and Nice list. It was kinda like a spotlight for the ones on the Nice list, and a way to poke fun at the missionaries on the Naughty list. It was really fun! We finished off the night with a slide show of the baptisms we have had since President Toone came in in a slide show form.It was really cool, and we are at 850 baptisms as a mission on the year. Then we had the big announcement ... we are going to... MEET ELDER JEFFREY R HOLLAND!!!!!!! He is coming to Arizona January 11th (Shout out to Elder Hayden Neal's birthday!!!) He will meet with us, the Phoenix and the Mesa mission and have a conference with him. I am BEYOND excited. fsjadfgasgdkfga Words cannot even begin.....

THEN on Tuesday we went to the temple! It was super awesome. We went as a mission! Sorta, and then we took a Mission Picture. And that was the weekend! It was the best weekend ever. 
Never pass up taking a picture with a turtle

Final thoughts: 
I want to go to Yuma in my mission at some point.
I want to serve with Elder Sylvester or Mabey 

I Love you all so much!!! Have a merry Christmas :)

"One day you're going to ask yourself 'How on earth does it get so hot in the summer, and so cold in the winter?!' Then you will think of me" -- Elder Hernandez

Well. That day came. It feels cold.  

Bishop Wilson, Elder Allen, Elder Aranibar
But, it has been a chill week. It started with bishop Wilson coming down and taking Elder Aranibar and me out to lunch! We went out to Jersey Mikes. It was good, I like their subs a lot. It was such a nice thing for him to do, and I'm eternally grateful for him.

A cute pit bull puppy, look at his eyes
Then on Tuesday we had Zone Meeting! It was so good. I love our zone leaders. They're like the perfect amount of awesome and spiritual. One thing elder Cassiano said really impacted me. He said:
"The gospel will go forward with or without us. But I want to be one of the people that pushes it forward."
That was a cool quote for me. I thought it was super deep and stuff. Idk. It just hit me hard. I want to be like him. I want to push the gospel forward, not just tag along for the ride.
Then after zone meeting we all went out to a Chinese restaurant and it was pretty good. The whole zone was there, so it was 16 missionaries I think. And we made one giant table. It was legit. Then Hermana Crawford, who was an 8th grade teacher before she came out on the mission, bought the zone 5 Pu-Pu Platers (yea that's what they're called) it was super cool of her to do that. She got transferred though :(

Then on Wednesday we went to the children's hospital with Brother Fritez and it was kinda crazy. There was a kid in the ward who is in there. I'm not sure what he has, but he was in the hospital for some reason, and it was pretty bad. He couldn't move his head. So we have his mom a blessing of comfort. It was kinda crazy, but she needed it.

Then after we went to see our recent convert to see how she was doing because she had been in and out of the hospital lately. So we went over to make sure she was okay.

Then on Friday we went to a members house to do some service. We moved a fridge over from a truck and to an apartment. It was so heavy! I hated it a lot. I hurt my back a little bit but it wasn't too bad.

Side note here, it's freezing here! It says it's only 45 degrees, but it feels like it's about 20. I hate it a lot. I'm freezing when I'm riding my bike out here. But anyway, that's it.

Stake conference was this weekend! It was super awesome. We went to the adult session of general conference, because the stake president wanted us to go and it was pretty cool. Of course it was all focused on missionary work. It was pretty cool. At the adult session president Hansen of the mission presidency said something I liked to try and get the members more excited about missionary work. He said "The gospel of Jesus Christ is too good to not share" it was a good quote.

Then we went to the regular session of stake conference and it was good too. President Toone was good and gave a good talk about missionary work. That's what the whole conference was about, clearly.

But yea! That's about all that happened this week. It was a cool week!

I love you all so much! It's been a good week here in Arizona, I love life and I'm excited to be here serving The Lord for 2 years. I know that this Church is true, and that it is the only Church on the earth that has the priesthood of god. The only C
hurch that has the authority to act in gods name has been restored to earth, and it is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Much love,

Elder Allen

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

December 3, 2013 I am not getting transferred

Me & Elder Gonzalez in our Mexican Flags

So yea. Transfer calls were last night, and I'll be staying in Montana Del Sur for at least 6 more weeks! Woo!

So on Monday night we had a cool experience. We had a Noche de Hogar (Family home evening) at the Church! It was pretty cool. The Zone Leaders put it on for our investigators and theirs, and it was awesome. There was Posole, so I was in heaven. It was there that we extended a baptismal date to one of our investigators, and she accepted! She is on date for December 14th, and we couldn't be more excited. She has a 17 year old daughter who loves to listen to us when we come over, but she goes to her boyfriend's Church, and she doesn't really want to change :( Darn Agency.

Then on Tuesday we went on exchanges! I went over to the Zone Leader's area, which is always nice because it means I get to drive the Jeep! Elder Cassiano (one of our ZL's) doesn't have a licence, so I drove :) 

My awesome zone
Then it was Thanksgiving!!! It was awesome! We had a half P-Day last Monday, so we finished the P-Day on Thanksgiving. We had from 1pm till sleepy time as P-Day. It was pretty cool. We went over to the Jones Family's house, and they fed us, and we had American Thanksgiving food. 

Then we went over to another investigator and he told us about this dream he had.  Elder Aranibar related it to baptism. That he was going through this forest of trials and hard things, but we were guiding him to the house at the top, which is his baptism. He totally got it, and we extended a baptismal date, and he is set to be baptized on December 21st! Pretty exciting stuff. 

On Saturday we had a ward activity at the church where we played Soccer with a bunch of people. We invited this kid, an "eternigator" basically someone who is an investigator forever. He came and played and seemed to have a lot of fun. He said he would try and come to church, but he got called into work, so he couldn't go :(

That is pretty much all that happened this week! It was pretty awesome. I hope everyone had a great thanksgiving and I am so thankful for all of you always, and especially at this time of the year. 

Love you! 

Elder Allen

November 25, 2013 Legit Week

My District!  
So this week has been legit, as you can tell by the subject. We had a pretty normal week at the beginning to be 100% honest. But on Tuesday we were able to go to the Temple to do a session! Always a great experience, and I took some sweet pictures, but I left my Camera at home :( I'll send them next week.

Then on Wednesday we had our regular district meeting, which was good and all that jazz. Then we went out to work and we found a family! An awesome one at that. It is a mom and her 4 kids, one girl is 19 (we haven't met her yet), another girl is 16, a 15 year old boy and an 11 year old girl! It is a pretty awesome family, but the kids only speak Spanish, they can't read it. They can read English though. So we might have to hand them over to the English Elders... I kinda hope not, because they're super legit. Then we went out and about and did our regular lessons. We are teaching this one lady and she is super solid. She is going to get baptized the 7th! Well that's when we are planning for at least. 

Then we went out on Thursday and did our regular stuff, and we found another family! But this family has 7 kids, but they came to church on Sunday, which was super cool!  

Wet pants from the rain. 
On Friday we had our regular weekly planning, and that was fun as always.... Not. I don't like it to be honest. But yea. We went out that day and had fun EXCEPT IT WAS RAINING. a lot. I hated it actually. I think I am turning into someone who doesn't like the rain :( I don't know how I will feel about Oregon once I finish my mission.... We will see. 

Then Saturday we had our awesome Talent Show/Ward Thanksgiving party! It was so cool. All of the missionaries from the ward got up and sang the 2 verses from "I hope they call me on a mission" in Spanish, and then we sang this song called "Mountains to climb" in English then a 3rd verse we made up about the ward we are serving in, to the tune of "I hope the call me on a mission". It was awesome! I have a video, but it's on the hastening device. 

Then we had our regular Sunday, but Elder Hernandez came and surprised the ward! It was awesome to see him. Then after church we got to go with Elder Aranibar to get his Patriarchal Blessing! That was super cool to be there for that. I didn't hear the blessing, but I could feel the spirit in the house. It was crazy. 

And that is about it! It was a good week. I love you all so much! I wish i could be there for T

Thanksgiving, but I know that this is where I need to be. I will think of you all for thanksgiving, as you all have had such a large impact in my life. Love you!

Elder Allen

Monday, November 11, 2013

November 11, 2013 Its P-Day P-Day, gotta get down on P-Day!

Well it's been a pretty awesome week. We have a lot of good things going for us in our area, and if things play out correctly, we might be able to baptize weekly!!! It would be pretty cool if that happened, because it never seemed possible before, but now it might be! 

We the baptism for Ryan and Marc, and yes now the whole family are members! I hope that I can be back in this ward in a year so I can be there when they go through the temple and get sealed together as a family. That would be amazing. 

So that was just 2 days ago, so I'll go back in time a bit now to Tuesday or Wednesday. I don't remember exactly what day... But we started teaching Elena and Nancy more frequently! It has been pretty amazing to see them just absorb the gospel. 

Then we had Zone Meeting. Which was cool... I honestly forgot what it was about. I think about committing people to be baptized? I think. It was good, I promise! I love our Zone Leaders, Elder Cassiano and Myler, they are great guys. 

Then we went on splits with the Elders Quorum on Wednesday night,and that was cool because we got to go and meet some of the less actives in the word that I don't already know. We talked about the significance of the Sacrament Prayer, and what it really means. How we can basically be baptized again every week through that sacred ordinance. Pretty cool if you ask me. 

Then we had a Church tour with 2 of our investigators and their families. The first one was with Elena, Nancy, and Carlos. They seemed to like everything and Elena came to church, but Nancy and Carlos didn't :( It was sad. Then we gave another Church tour to Oscar and his whole family (his wife and 5 kids). And they seemed to really like everything. Then they all went to the baptism! (Elena, Nancy, Carlos, Oscar and his family) and so we had a ton of investigators there to see how a baptism works! It was so cool. And I gave one of the talks on the Holy Ghost! I basically just broke down one scripture, 2 Nephi 32:3. It went well, I think haha. 

Then on Sunday we heard the best news. We were just welcoming people into the sacrament hall like we always do, when Gicela (Our recent convert, my first baptism) walks in with her daughters (Kassandra, 11 and Jaykeena, 9 who's father won't let them get baptized). We welcome them like normal and Kassandra goes "we have good news!" so I reply with "What is the good news?" and she says "Our dad said we can get baptized!" And so clearly, I start freaking out. So we are really hoping for, and pushing for, them to be baptized this Saturday. I really hope it happens!!! 

Anyway, that is my week!

It has been an amazing week, and I love you all so much! Love you!

Elder Allen

Monday, November 4, 2013

November 4, 2013 What an Amazing Week!

Well this has been an amazing week!

Monday we got in contact with a Potential Investigator named Oscar. He was a street contact, who doesn't seem like the person who would want to learn about God, when you first see him that is. Once you get to know him, you realize that God and Jesus Christ are such a huge part of his life. When we started teaching him, we asked him what his expectations were from us being here. He said "Man... I just want to be able to teach my kids about how to be a good person, like you guys are!" So we have taught him a few times, and he seems really solid. I think he could get baptized with his wife, and 5 kids, but only 2 are over the age of 8. 

On Tuesday we had our first district meeting with our new district leader, my new companion, Elder Aranibar. It was great, but it got cut short because the guy who was going to paint our new house had to go and get new paint, but he only speaks Spanish, so we had to go with him to translate for the housing coordinator, Elder Davenport. 

On Wednesday we received our Hastening Devices, aka iPads. It is pretty crazy, not going to lie. There is so much potential in them! We had to install a whole lot of stuff on there that makes it so we can't do anything bad. It is actually really secure. I am slightly in love with iOS7... It is so pretty! And so effective. Anyway, then we came home after the iPad training from Brother Lee Donaldson (the inspired questions guy from The District 2) and we set up all of the stuff we need in Gospel Library. There isn't a ton in Spanish, which makes me sad, but being in a more humble area, it makes me have to use my paper copy of the standard works, which makes us look less rich!

Then we had Halloween on Thursday, and it was super weird. We had to be inside at 4:30pm! And guess what we did while inside? We put all of the people in our area book into our iPad. For 5 hours. It was such a drag to be honest, but it has to be done! 

Then on Friday we had weekly planning, with the iPads. It was legit. It is hard to get used to the app, and it is slow and I'm pretty sure it is in Beta or maybe even Alpha to be honest. And then after weekly planning, we moved into our new house! It is so cool! I will email some pictures home today! 

And that is pretty much all that happened! Saturday and Sunday were fairly standard in comparison 

I love you all so much and I have you all in my prayers!!! And I know that this is exactly where and what I need to be doing. I hit 5 months as a missionary 2 days ago.... What???? Crazy!!

√Člder Allen

208 W. Darrow Road

Phoenix Arizona 85041 


Trevor has been transferred to a house.  His new address is:
208 W Darrow Road
Phoenix Arizona 85041

Monday, October 28, 2013

October 28, 2013 New Companion and new Home

Me in Elder Hernandez's shirt.  I have big shoulders to fill
Monday was a crazy day to be honest. At first I was planning on going to be in a tri-panionship from Monday to Wednesday (until I get my new companion because Elder Hernandez had to report to the Mission home on Monday) BUT Elder Oscarson (one of my Zone Leaders at the time) was made an Assistant  So he had to go early to get trained and such. So I went over to the ZL's early to be companions with Elder Cassiano (the other ZL). So basically I was District Leader/Zone Leader for 2 days haha. Not really, but kinda. It was fun for 2 days. 

Tuesday I was over with Elder Cassiano, and he called the Assistants and asked if I could lead the District Meeting in Elder Hernandez's absence, and they said yes! Well their exact words were "Yea, that would be good training for him"....... I don't know what that means, but I'll take it. So I lead District Meeting and it was fun.

Then Wednesday was Transfers! I was told that I wasn't being transferred  so I was happy. I went to the meeting, and I got my new companion, Elder Aranibar! He's a really cool kid from Peru initially, but he moved to Utah (West Jordan) when he was 13. So that is a little bit about him! He is really cool, and was in the same Zone as me before transfers. He was in Aguila and is actually Elder Mabey's trainer. Oh and at transfer meeting we found out we will be getting iPads this Wednesday. No iPhones, but President Toone said they would roll those out fairly soon after. Probably by my 1 year mark. 

Then Thursday was a pretty normal day. I have to lead the area because Elder Aranibar is new here, but it hasn't been too hard. We have a pretty small area, so it wasn't too bad. 

Friday we had my Post 12 week training meeting. That was fun, because we got to go to Tempe and see President Toone again! It was really cool, he's such a great guy. And then later that night we had an interview for Anselmo's baptism the next day haha. It was good that he passed! And after the interview we had a farewell party for a girl in Montana del Sur ward who is going to the Salem Oregon Mission! It was cool because the entire ward throws the party and they do so much for the future missionary! It is so cool.

Then Saturday we had the baptism! It was so awesome. A lot of members from the ward came to support him. So we were pumped. Oh, I got to do my the baptism.  

That is pretty much the whole week. 

Love you all
Elder Allen

October 21, 2013 Transfers this week

We have been teaching all of our solid investigators, Anselmo, Amy, Samantha, Ryan and Marc. It has been good. They were all sad that Elder Hernandez is leaving, as was I, but it should be a good transition because I will still be in the area, so I can lead the new missionary and introduce him to everyone. We should have Anselmo baptized this Saturday, which is good. He is married to an endowed member of 5 years. It is great that he has finally accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ into his life. It has been amazing to see his transformation, as he is the first investigator what I will have taught all the lessons to. I can't wait till his baptism. 

Not a ton more has happened this week. A week from today (Next Monday  we will be painting our new house that we will be moving into, and so we should be moving into there sometime next week.

I will be receiving a new companion, who will also be our district leader, this Wednesday  I don't know who it is yet, but I will let you know next week! I'm sure he will be a good guy and we will be hard workers together. 

That is about it! I love you all so much and I can't wait to hear form you again!

Love Elder Allen
Fun Zone activity (Shout-out to Elder Mabey)

Me and Hermana Haar in our Wildlife shirts.  

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

October 14, 2013 I am not moving yet!

Yea. Haven't moved yet! We should be moving this Friday, at least I really hope so! I'm getting sick of doing my laundry at the Laundromat. Our new house will be nice, and I will take pictures once we move in.

Mesa Arizona Temple
This past week I started reading Jesus the Christ, and oh my gosh... SUCH a good book. I seriously love it so much! It is a little dense to read, especially at 8am, but It is amazing! Then on Tuesday we went to the Visitors Center with Ryan and Alexa, after 2 times of not being able to go for one reason or another. It was awesome. We went and watched the Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration  movie and it is reaaaaaaally good. (No "beware of pride, boy" quote though )

Mariachi Band for the Wedding
Then on Thursday I went on exchanges with the Zone Leaders, Elder Cassiano. He has been in my area before, so he knew what we were doing and where we were going, so it was easy. We had some good lessons with some people that didn't exactly follow what we had planned, but we taught what the people needed to hear, which is wayyyyy more important. 

Then on Friday we had the opportunity to go to the wedding of our investigator, Ryan. He is getting married to a Less Active member named Alexa (who is active now) and it was really cool. They were the ones who asked me to translate (yea right!) 

Alexa and Ryan's Wedding.  She cried when he placed the ring on her finger
That is pretty much all that happened this week. It was a good week though, we have a decent amount of investigators and they are learning about this wonderful gospel. 

Also, this upcoming week will be Elder Hernandez' last week in the field... It's sad. 

Love you all so much, 

Elder Allen

The Happy couple, Me, and Elder Hernandez

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Preparing to Serve a Full-Time Mission!

I found this really cool picture online that describes what I did in preparation for preparing to serve a full time mission, and the whole mission call experience! Read the whole article here!

Monday, October 7, 2013

I'm moving!!

Well there was a lot that happened this week. It's been pretty great to be honest.

It started off pretty standard, with P-Day and a regular Tuesday, but then we went out with the Elders Quorum and it got interesting. We went to a family who was baptized into our ward, and then they got offended by something that someone said to them, and left the church, and now doesn't want anything to do with this religion. It was so shocking to me! It really hit home to me, and Elder Bednar's talk "And Nothing Shall Offend Them". It is so important that we choose the Gospel of Jesus Christ over being offended, because that's really what the choice is, if you cut to the core. 

Then we had Zone Conference. But ours was different, it was actually two zones because the Phoenix stake (the stake I'm serving in) has 2 zones in it. So it was us and the Phoenix zone that were there. It was amazing. I have the most Respect and Love for President Toone than almost anyone I have met. He truly is called of God to be MY mission president. He is so in tune with the spirit, it is amazing. 

Saturday was such a good day. We were able to go to the Stake Center and watch all 3 sessions of conference that day! It was amazing. Brother Frietz was the one who drove us and then he took us out to lunch in between the conferences. I LOVED Elder Dube's Talk and Elder Uchtdorf's Priesthood Talk. They were seriously the best. Oh yea, I gave a blessing in spanish for the first time... That was scary!

Sunday was a really good day too. Again, Brother Frietz drove us to conference, and it was a great experience. I loved President Monson, especially when he was talking about his Wife, I teared up. It was so adorable! 

That is basically all that happened this week!

Summary: General conference is the best thing in the world and this Church is true. I quote Elder Holland now when he said this about the Book of Mormon "...there is no other answer [for the divinity of the Book of Mormon] than the one Joseph gave as its young unlearned translator. In this I stand with my own great-grandfather, who said simply enough, “No wicked man could write such a book as this; and no good man would write it, unless it were true and he were commanded of God to do so.” "

(The talk is Safety for the Soul, I highly recommend it) 

Much Love, 

Elder Allen

Oh P.S.! My mail man is Mormon, and he will be our mail man at our new place, so he will make sure that we get all of our mail, even if it has our old address on it! Great guy he is. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

September 30, 2013 Woot Woot

This week has been pretty cool. 

Monday September 23rd:
Sweet bouncy house
Not much happened this day. We just sorta had our regular P-Day. We played some Phase 10

Tuesday September 24th:
There was an Hermana in our district who went on exchanges with the Sister Training Leader, and so we got to see the iPads in action. It is pretty cool to have your whole area book, every Mormon message/video on, and all of the scriptures all on one device. I am pretty excited for when we get to use them.

Wednesday September 25th:
We went to a stake talent show, and that was pretty fun to see the stake come together, both English and Spanish, to have a good time. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is what brings people together.
Texting and riding a bike, because I can!  

Thursday September 26th:
We taught an investigator. She has been taught by the missionaries before, but for whatever reason she wasn't baptized. We taught the first half of Lesson 1 (because we ran out of time) and she liked it a lot. She gave the closing prayer and she started crying during it. I think It's just a matter of time until she fully accepts the Gospel into her life. 

Friday September 27th:
This was a funny day. Elder Hernandez was hit by a car. Not only a car, a cop car. And not only a cop car, but a cop car pulling out of a police station. It was pretty funny to be honest. The reason I say it is funny is because he wasn't hurt at all from the hit. We were biking on the sidewalk in front of the station and there was a cop who was slowly pulling out of the station. I was leading and so I rode in front of him and the cop must not have seen me and so he kept inching out and he inched out enough to hit Elder Hernandez and popped his front tire. The police officer got him a new tire from Wal-Mart but it was a cheap one. Then later that same day we went over to a part member family's house and I invited a non member of the house (the father) to be baptized on October 26th and he said yes! So I am pretty excited. 

Saturday September 28th:
Not a ton happened on this day either, but we biked 12 miles, so that was a pain. 

Sunday September 29th:
Sunday was an amazing day. It was Fast and Testimony meeting because of General Conference (which I am beyond excited for, words cannot even begin to describe) and there were some great testimonies born. Then after church we went to Montana del Sur's old bishops hospital room. He trims palm trees for a living and he was up in one one day and he fell from about 20+ feet. He only broke his ankle and fractured a vertebrae in his back. The Doctors said he is really lucky that that's all that happened. Then later that night we had a Fireside at the chapel and it was amazing. Simply amazing. We asked our recent convert to bare her testimony and she started crying while she talked about how much the Gospel has blessed her. Then her daughters just randomly got up and decided to bear their testimonies too. They're 9 and 11 and they are not members because their dad thinks that they don't understand what they would be getting into if they were baptized. I wish he was there last night to hear them say what they said. They were so heart-felt and emotional. It was amazing. I teared up!

I love this work. It is the work of God, and I wouldn't change it for the world. 

I hope you all are doing well, (Shout out to Grandma Weight for her Birthday today!) and I love you all so much! 

Elder Allen

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

September 23, 2013 My first bike accident

Monday September 16th:
Found some cool zombie posters at an investigator's trailer!
P-Day as normal. Not a ton happened, but Elder Hernandez and Me got taken out to dinner, so that was really nice. The Valdez family are the ones who took us. 

Tuesday September 17th:
Not much happened that day, but we got a new investigator.  He's 78 years old and has had 3 heart attacks in the past 6 months. He has been smoking for like 50 years, and he is trying to figure out why God let him live through 3 heart attacks, and he thinks that this gospel may be the reason.

Wednesday September 18th:
Pretty regular day, we taught a less active guy  who has some form of cancer in his eye. It's sad. 

Thursday September 19th:
I had my first bike accident! It really wasn't anything huge. Basically Elder Hernandez and I both kinda hit each other and fell. I got a little tear in my grey old suit pants, I'm going to look into getting those fixed. I'll send some pictures of the aftermath. 

Notice my handlebars and my wheel position.  
Friday September 20th:
Not much happened except we taught our 78 year old investigator again. 

Saturday September 21st:
We had service for the Valdez family by moving a ton of concrete out of their back/side yard into his truck and then to a dump. It was really hard and heavy work. Not to mention it was about 105 degrees when we were doing it! But they were kind enough to take us out to dinner (for the second time this week) to thank us. 

Sunday September 22nd:
We had dinner with one of my favorite members of the ward, The Frietz's. They're this awesome family that has had all of their kids serve missions, so they are just really missionary minded. They love having the missionaries over and to go out and teach with us. They also offered to to take us to the Stake Center for General Conference. Its pretty sweet!

That's pretty much all that happened! I had a great week all in all, and I'm so glad to be here to do the Lord's work. I love the people so much, and I wouldn't trade this for the world (Sorry Mom)

Elder Allen

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Crazy Week 9/16/2013

Monday and Tuesday (9th and 10th) were pretty much your standard days. Go out and get groceries, etc...

Wednesday (11th): 
We met with one of our investigators, Ryan, and his Fiancee who is a member, Alexa. They are super cool and are getting married on the 11th of October! They asked me to be the translator for their wedding because Ryan's family doesn't speak Spanish but the wedding will be in Spanish. I was so honored, but My Spanish is not nearly good enough to do that. So I had to decline. But they are going with us to the temple Visitors center this Tuesday to watch the Restoration, so that should be good. 

Thursday (12th):
Pretty basic day, we just went by to see some Less active/Recent converts to make sure all was well or if there was anything we could do for them. 

Friday (13th):
We had weekly planning and then we had our Post-6 week training meeting at the building right next to the mission home. It was a good training meeting that was run by the Assistant's to the President. That took up most of the day though.
Saturday (14th):
Saturday was a crazy day. We started it with getting a knock on the door really early in the morning (at like 6:28am) And it was the Davenports with a new desk for me and a new couch for the apartment! It was pretty sweet. So naturally, we threw the old desk and couch out of the 3rd story window! (Totally normal for 4 guys ages 18-21 to do) and I video taped it. Hopefully the videos will send. THen we had a ward Kermes! Basically just a huge ward/stake party that involved A TON of food (as most latino functions do). It was amazing, but we went to go help them set up pretty much all day because they were really short on helpers. We were barely ready for everyone when people started showing up. I helped cook the incredibly yummy Carne Asada. Then it didn't end till like 7pm and they needed help cleaning up too! So we were basically there all day. The best part were the dances that the members of the ward put on! I'll send some pictures home.

Sunday (15th): We had our regular 6:30am meeting at the church (which is really starting to drag on me) and then our regular church. We went to the Bishops after church for a dinner/Lunch where we had Chicheron... I'll let you guys figure out what that was. It wasn't the best texture, but it tasted good? 

That's pretty much all that happened this week!

Love you all so much, and I am trying to give all I can to the people of South Phoenix everyday. 

Elder Allen

Saturday, September 14, 2013

September 9, 2013 I didn't get transferred!

I didn't get transferred! Me and my companion, Elder Hernandez, are going to stay here for another 6 weeks. This will be Elder Hernandez's first and last area, so that is kinda cool. 

Facebook has been really cool to use! For those of you that don't know, we are now allowed to use Facebook for an hour a day for proselyting purposes. If we are teaching a lesson, however, we can go on longer. It is pretty cool because you can see how the Lord is hastening the work of salvation; the whole world is now open because of the Internet! A lot of really good friends of mine (S/o to Tia, Lucy and others) have given me some referrals of people who might be interested in the gospel, or at least hearing a spiritual message.

Margarito got baptized! I'll send some pictures in another email, but it was a really cool baptism because there was a ton of his family there who are not members. 

First day of facebook! It was a bit of a pain at first, because we had to hide LITERALLY (and I mean that in the dictionary definition way) every post ever that doesn't pertain to missionary work. At first I hated it because it was a lot of work, but I realized that all of that stuff doesn't matter and I'm glad that it is gone. 

I went on exchanges with the Zone Leader, Elder Oscarson. Hes a good hard worker from Chicago (shouts to McClicky) and he is reallllly good at Spanish. He helped me make my language study time more effective.

We got some new investigators! We went over to a less active girl in our ward and she has a fiance who isn't a member. She told us that they really want to get sealed in the temple, so we are going to talk to him about Baptism and now we are teaching him! She has a son from her first marriage, Mark, who is 9 and he wants to be baptized too! So we should have them be baptized in the near future. 

Friday was pretty chill. Because of Weekly Planning, studies and Facebook time, we didn't have a ton of time to go out and teach, but that's okay, because we had a good day on Facebook. I got 5 referrals, so that is always good :)

We had service after we did some studies in the morning, so we went over to some peoples house and cleaned up their yard. Then we went to Arby's for lunch (yum). I had forgotten how good Arby's is... 

I had the opportunity of going to the meeting that the Zone leaders have with the Stake President. I went because one of the Zone Leaders, Elder Anderson, is leaving today :'( I'm going to miss him, hes a really funny and cool guy. And a great missionary. But he was leaving so they wanted someone who is staying in the mission to go! So they chose me! And so I went to the meeting and got to meet the Stake President, President Porter. Hes a great guy who is really on top of everything. 

That's pretty much all that happened! 
Love you all so much! 

Elder Allen

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


Hello Everyone.  

BIG NEWS!!!!!!
We get Facebook on Tuesday. We will be able to get on for an Hour a day and try and teach lessons on the Internet. So that will be a big change. Apparently we have to go through and Delete all of our old posts... Or Hide them... I don't know. All I know is that is going to take FOREVER. Stupid social networking. But yea. Then they announced that in the coming months (probably by Christmas) the whole mission will have iPads and iPhones. So that's a lot of changes!
The Sunsets in Arizona are beautiful
Okay so this has been a slow week for me, so not a whole lot has happened to be honest. We have a baptism today for Margarito who has only been here for 2 months, so he doesn't know any English. Then we had interviews on Tuesday with President Toone, and that was nice. He told me he would try to keep trainers and trainees together for the whole 12 weeks. So hopefully that will happen. I don't want to leave and I don't want Elder Hernandez to leave.

Other than all of that, it's been a slow week. 

Dad: I went to an investigators house and Tremors was on. So That was a tender mercy of the Lord (It was in Spanish though)

That's all! Love you all so much and Miss you tons! 

Elder Allen 

Monday, August 26, 2013

August 26, 2013

Trevor is living in an apartment in South Phoenix.  The mission home has asked us NOT to publish his address for his own safety.  If you would like to have it, please email me and I will send it to you.

Elder Hernandez, my companion is a great missionary. He is always focused and very set on the work. He's a great trainer. I'm sad that he leaves so soon (as soon as he is done training me, his mission is over) and that is sad. I also live with Elder Burtenshaw who is being trained by Elder Hyer. They're English elders so we don't talk about them... Just kidding they're cool guys.

When I need groceries, we shop at the devils store: Walmart  It's really not that bad, it's just kinda gross sometimes. I try to buy healthy food, but that is hard. 

Lately I haven't had to use the backpack or bladder/Camel-back too much. It's been nice to be honest. The backpack is a little bigger than I need and it makes my back sweaty. But it is so convenient when I need water. If I don't use my backpack I use this little Mexican knit sling bag that I got at the Mexican store.

There is a zone in my mission (I believe the Tempe Zone) has iPads and iPhone 5's. So I hope I get transferred there eventually! And they all have cars. President Toon told us on the first day that this is a "test mission" Where the first presidency likes to test out ideas for the future of mission, aka iPads, iPhones, all missionaries in cars etc... So maybe one day yea.

On to my week!

Monday August 19th
Me, Elder Hernandez, Kassandra, Jaykeena, Gicela, 
Panchito and Tonatiou
That was last P-Day so not much happened. We went to the Mexican store and I got a lot of stuff haha. It was all half price because the lady who owns it is a member. I got a sling that fits a Libro de Mormon perfectly and not much more. Then I got a bigger one that  fits some more stuff. Then I got a Mexican sweatshirt that has a bunch of different colors (it's really cool) and finally a nice big blanket. It was all only $19 so it wasn't too bad haha.

Tuesday August 20th
Tuesday we went to the Temple visitors center with Gicela and her family and Panchito. It was really cool. We watched Testaments in Spanish  and I could follow along okay! Then we went to Deseret Book and I got the CTR Ring, and me and Elder Hernandez pitched in and got Gicela and her family a Child's Hymn CD so they can listen to it. Oh and we saw President Toone there haha. Hugging him is always awkward... He's so tall.

Wednesday August 21st
Not much happened on Wednesday... We went on splits with the Elders Quorum.

Thursday August 22nd
We went to the Mesa Temple and did a session at 6:30 in the morning. It was early but of course it was worth it.

Friday August 22nd:
We left weekly planning early to go give someone in our ward a blessing with the Bishop. We actually had to call president Toone to get permission to leave the mission, because we were going to the Mesa and Phoenix mission to get to the hospital. The blessing went well, and he should be doing better by now. Then we went by our progressing investigator, Margarito, and he had been praying for a baptismal date! He wants to be baptized on his mom's birthday, a week from today!!! I'm so excited for him.

Saturday August 23rd:

Sunday August 24th:
Hostess came by the church (yes the company) and the gave us a TON of boxes of blueberry muffins... They were good. And free. Then we went out with some members to see some people, but of course no one was home or didn't answer the door. Woot. :(

That's my week!

I love you and miss you all so  much. I hope you all are doing well! I pray for you all everyday, and I can't wait to see you all again. 

I can't imagine doing anything else in my life right now. 

Elder Allen

Monday, August 19, 2013

Crazy Week, First Baptism

Okay, I am going to break this down by day now, because that seems easier. 

Monday August 12th:
It was a pretty chill day, obviously it was P-Day which is always nice. Then we had FHE at the church building for all of our investigators and the Hermana's in our ward (Haar and Bryant) taught about the Plan of Salvation to all of them. It was a pretty nice day.

Tuesday August 13th:
Nothing much happened on Tuesday to be honest. We had a district meeting and then went to Panda Express. So that was awesome as always.

Wednesday August 14th:
Wow we met with our investigator several times. 

Thursday August 15th: 
That was an awesome day. Elder Carden of the 70 came and talked to us pretty much all day. It was a really cool experience and he said a lot of awesome things, but it basically broke down to work more with the members. They are the key to furthering the work of salvation. Once we were done with the mission tour, we didn't have a lot of time to go out and proselyte  so we went to our investigator to make sure all was well. We were with the ward mission leader to teach her about Tithing. She was totally down for it. 

Friday August 16th:
Not much happened today but we showed our investigator the John Tanner video, what an inspiring man he is!!! I love that video, it is so good. 
Saturday August 17th:
Our investigator GOT BAPTIZED!!!!!! It was a great day, I'll send the pictures. 

Sunday August 18th:
We were on our way to a referrals house, and while we were knocking on their door an African American man asks me "Do you think I'm going to Hell for smoking this here blunt?" I sighed and didn't really want to respond, but I said "No, not if you plan on repenting for it. Smoking that would be breaking a commandment because it is against the law of the land." He went on to yell at me for telling him he was sinning and then asked me why my first name was Elder. I explained to him that it is a title that sorta means teacher. He then asked me what tribe of Israel I was from. When i said Ephraim, he yelled at me again calling me an "idomite" I don't know what that means, but apparently I am one. Then he looked at my companion, who is from El Salvador, and said "You need to find yourself. You have been called to preach the word of God, this white boy isn't."
So that was interesting....