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....

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

I used to love dogs, then I came to Arizona...

This week has been pretty good. We haven't had a ton of success, we only got 1 new investigator this week, and it is the daughter of one of our other investigators. We started off the week pretty slow to be honest, but then we had a Zone Conference and it revitalized our work effort. We have these things called OYM's (Open your mouth) and it basically means we stop and talk to whoever is in our path. Our goal for the week was to get 140, and by the time Wednesday rolled around we were at something like 30. We hunkered down on Thursday through Saturday and we got around 70 for those 3 days. Not too bad. But then Sunday came and from 6:30 to 8:45 we got 61 OYM's and a good 7-8 Potential investigators! It was a pretty great way to end the week. 

Now to answer some of your questions: 
Laundry?  Do you go to the laundry mat? 
Yes a member takes us to the laundry mat every P-day morning and it costs $2.50 in total to do my laundry, so not too bad. 
What Spanish ward to you report to? 
We report to the ward called Montana del Sur (there should be a tilda on that second n in montana)
How is the food?  Do you get fed by the members?  Have you had to talk in church yet? 
We get fed by members almost every night for dinner, so that's nice. The food here is so good. It's all real Mexican food, which is a nice change from Taco Bell. I have not had the opportunity to give a talk yet. 

Short letter this week.  

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Monday is P-Day

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.

I am in South Phoenix right now, and everything is going well. I'll send some pictures of my appartment. I live with my companion, Elder Hernandez, and 2 other English speaking Elders, Hyeer (I think that is how it is spelled) and Elder Burtenshaw. They're English elders who are in an area that is close to mine. Our area is... Humble. There are a lot of trailer parks that we go to, and people normally live in houses smaller than our apartment, but have twice as many people. Even with these circumstances, these are some of the best people I've ever met. They're so kind to everyone. I love them already.

"Bed Sheets?, Who invited that kid?"
My companion is from El Salvador originally but has been living in Salt lake since he was 13. Hes been in the mission for 21 months, so I'm probably going to be his last companion (assuming that I don't get transferred before I finish training). I love President Toone! He's an amazing man, and even though I only got to talk to him for about 5 minutes but I can already tell he's a spiritual giant as well as a literal one (he's 7 feet tall). 

The bike is wonderful! It really is a quality bike. I love it. I lock it up everywhere I go because it looks so nice
Before my first 1/2 day on a bike
After a full day on a bike, "I was dead tired" 
and new. And bikes are stolen very often here. I talked to the mission president's wife, and she said I am not allowed to have light grey suits :( I can get light grey and khaki pants, but just not the suit. That's a bit disappointing, but I'll be okay. Some super cool things have happened already since I have been here.

I already saw a miracle:
Okay here's the story: It was after church yesterday and one of the Hermanas (sister missionaries) in our ward (we have 6 missionaries that cover 1 Spanish ward) asked us to go over to an investigators house and give her a blessing for the sick. We of course agreed and they took us over to her trailer. Once we got there we talked for a little bit and we found out why she needed a blessing (she was having some pains in her leg). We then did the sealing. I anointed the oil and my Companion sealed it and gave the blessing (all in Spanish, may I remind you) As my companion put his hands on her head, she began to shake a lot. Like it almost felt like she was having a seizure underneath us. After we were done she was talking to us and she said this (in my own words) "As you gave me the blessing my vision started to go dark. I couldn't see anything, but as the blessing went on, I saw a light. The light started to get closer and closer to me until it encompassed my vision. Then I realized that this light was me being baptized. I saw myself getting submerged in the water and coming out. Then as you finished the blessing, there was a warmth that went my head down unto my leg and the pain went away"  I was crying the spirit was so strong in that house. 

We have some really great progressing investigators! And they are such a great family. They have a baptismal date for the 17th of August and I am so excited for them. We just need to get the father on board...
Then we have a 19 year old boy who just got here from Mexico and his family is all members so he is taking the lessons. 

I know that this church is true. It is only confirmed that it is true through miracles like that blessing. I know that there are people here that need me. I love you all, and I'll see you in 2.

Elder Allen