Serving in the Canada Edmonton Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Week 22, 2/23/16

Hello cuties. Another great week of work up here in Slave Lake for me! Wasn't quite as eventful as last week but still a good, solid week. This week we spent about 2 hours per day helping people move things. Whether it was helping a members friend move, helping investigators move rhinoceros sized TVs, or helping a random lady in our apartment complex move some big things, we are getting pretty good at moving large things around haha. It's kind of a little joke I've had with both my companions.... Sometimes it seems like everybody in the town knows the missionaries will help move things for free, so we call ourselves the free movers. Haha we are totally happy to help people out and give service, it's just kind of funny. 

Slave Lake Chapel - Rebuilt after the fire of 2011

Now on to the actual highlights of the week. We had a lesson with Bxxxx and Bxx and their family (I'm just gonna start calling them "the fam") last Tuesday night, and it went pretty great! We taught about the gospel of Jesus Christ and most of their family was there. We were able to commit the four older daughters to baptism on the March 19th, and answer some great questions they had. We had another lesson with them on Thursday night, and we had already taught most of them the first 3 preach my gospel lessons so now it was on to the commandments. We taught two of the bigger commandments right off the bat, because those two will probably be the biggest issue for them. We taught word of wisdom and law of chastity.... It went basically as well as it could have but still not the most fun lesson ever haha. 

At the beginning the lesson we committed two more of the kids. They hadn't been there the last few lessons, so we took care of that and then got right down to business. Most of the family accepted the word of wisdom pretty well, they weren't super enthusiastic or overjoyed to hear about it, but they have seen the changes Bxxxx has made in his life and I think they knew it was coming haha. Then we got around to the law of chastity though.... Haha it went ok. Part way through that Shxx said, " so we basically have to be nuns?" I guess we will find out who is really committed now. 

The good news is that Bxx seems to be making progress. She has been Catholic her whole life and is struggling to accept all this different stuff. She still has a long way to go but she has come so far! Her and Blake and a few of the kids came to church on Sunday, the only kids who weren't there were either sick or out of town. 
Dun dun duuun!....Donair

Wednesday we had exchanges and I stayed in Slave Lake with our new district leader who is serving in Athabasca. He served in Slave Lake about a year ago and I have heard some pretty interesting stories about him, so I thought I was going to have a super entertaining exchange with him but he is actually pretty normal, so not really any funny stories to report on that. 

There's not really anything else to report from this week, just lots of helping people move stuff, tracting, etc. We had an awesome lesson with our buddy Lxx on Saturday and we feel like he is so close to baptism! We have 11 investigators that at one point have discussed baptism on March 19, so that potentially could a big day!

In other news I guess a highlight from this week is the donair I'm about to eat :):):) I'm currently finishing up this email while I'm waiting, and I kind of feel like it's Christmas morning. Well I hope you all had an awesome week and have an even better week this week! 

Love you guys<3   Elder Weston Bonny

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Week 21, 2/16/16

Another week down! Time is really flying by I can't believe it. I guess that's what happens when you're super busy and loving the mission! Well this week was full of great experiences and fun times. Not to mention it was Valentine's Day. Valentine's is a pretty big deal to us missionaries; it's basically what we look forward to all year. Kidding lol. 

How cute!  I wonder if they gave those balloons to each other...?

Anyways here are some highlights from this week: Last Tuesday night I felt like a true Canadian. WE WENT CURLING. It was actually really fun believe it or not, and it's pretty hard. The city was having this event called "Frostfest" last week, and as part of it there was a free curling night where people could come learn to curl for free. We figured we would go because it's a great opportunity to talk to a lot of people and be seen in the community and.... I mean.... It's free curling like you can't pass up on that. We had such a great time learning how and talking with the people there! We were with this other young couple learning from a couple kids on the high school curling team, and we all had fun getting to know each other and watching each other fail haha. We had some awesome opportunities to answer questions for them about what we do as missionaries and explained a couple things about our church, and got a potential investigator out of it! And if nothing else we provided some people with a good experience with "Mormon missionaries" that they will remember. 

Curling in Slave Lake...oversized shuffleboard with brooms?

Friday is where things started to get really good. We had a lesson with Bxxxx and all of his family who were at his house at the time, which ended up being three of his boys and his girlfriend Bxx, and her daughter who was in and out tending to her baby. We had a pretty average lesson with them, we taught the restoration again because Bxxxx's boys haven't heard it, and then towards the end the spirit literally just took over. It was one of the most powerful, spiritual lessons I have ever been in. We testified a lot about how God answers prayers and the Holy Ghost, and I can't really remember too much of what we said but we invited them pray with us right there to ask if what we taught is true. Bxxxx prayed that his family would know the truth like he has. He already has a rock solid testimony, he has changed so many things in his life and just needs to get married (or move out) to be baptized, and he won't marry Bxx unless he knows he can have an eternal marriage. Pretty much all their kids are open to the idea of baptism/ want to be baptized, and if Bxx got on board it would just all be perfect. After his prayer we all sat there quietly for a bit, and I was praying so hard that Bxx would get an answer. After that we said some things and then brought up baptism and committed them all to work towards being baptized on March 19th! A lot of things need to happen in order for them to be baptized, but they are all willing to work towards that date:) hopefully we will get the rest of the family on date in our lesson with them tonight! 

Saturday was lots of fun. We went to a little league hockey game (we have been going to a lot lately, I'll explain why in a bit), and did some other missionary work stuff during the day. Our branch had a potluck that night and we were feeling like contributing so we went and got some of the super easy holiday Pillsbury sugar cookies that you just throw in the oven for a few minutes.... Haha if only it were that easy. We made the first batch and they were great and as I was putting the second batch in, one of the rags I was holding (we don't have oven mitts) fell onto the oven burner and burst into flames within seconds hahaha. I hurried and closed the oven door and turned it off (that's what you're supposed to do.... right?), and my dear beloved companion.... Bless his heart haha he was freaking out and opened the door and poured literally the rest of the flour we had on it, and that only made it way worse, so then he poured like a quart of water on it and finally it was out. So needless to say we only brought 12 cookies to the potluck and we had a big mess to clean up later that night. 

learning lots of practical kitchen skills Mom

Before we went to the potluck we had a lesson/ played ping pong with our investigator Nxxx, and it went decently well. We were pretty sure he was high on weed. Oh well what can you do? At 6 we went to the potluck, and we had a great time! There was a great turnout, a lot of members brought family and a lot of less actives came. 

The miracle though, was that a certain inactive member (she is also a returned missionary) who got very offended at church a couple years ago and hasn't wanted anything to do with it since was there! The Parks have been working with her a lot for the past little while, and she broke her ankle a few weeks ago so we have been doing any service we can for her. We also have been going to her boys hockey games (she has three boys ages , 10 and 11) and talking with her there and building our relationship. It really is a miracle that she will even talk to us. She was very openly against having any involvement with the church or missionaries for quite some time, but now she is willing to let us teach her 3 boys and baptize them! We talked to her more at the potluck and she is ready to let us teach them, so we are hoping that means she will start coming back to church too. I can't really express just how miraculous the situation is!  

Well those are the big highlights from this week. Church was also great; we had 60 people there which is a lot for this branch, and 7 investigators.  Bxx didn't come but we still are hopeful for her :)  Other than that, this week was basically full of a lot snow shoveling, tracting, visiting less actives, and a few other good lessons with recent converts. We are having a great time up here in Slave Lake, and the Lord continues to bless us and the work up here:) 

I'm loving the mission!  I can testify that living the gospel of Jesus Christ and following His commandments really does bring true lasting joy and happiness :).  Sorry this email was so long!! I hope you all had a great week, and HAPPY LATE VALENTINES DAY. I love you all 

Week 20, 2/10/16

Hey everyone! This week wasn't super eventful missionary work wise unfortunately, but I still have some pretty fun stories for y'all. First item of business is that transfer calls were yesterday and I get to stay in the promised land another 6 weeks!!! I'm super excited about it, we have some great things going with some of the people we are working with here. Not to mention everything else about the area is awesome too. Basically I've just been really blessed :)  

Anyways on to this week's highlights, last Tuesday night we noticed that the northern lights were out really good, so we drove a little ways out of town to a dark place at 11 at night (we had permission) and watched them for a bit.... They were unreal . There was this big huge green ribbon across the entire sky and several other smaller ones by it that would light up super bright for a little and you could notice them moving a bit. It was legit. Unfortunately I didn't get any good pics, next time i definitely will though! 

Friday we had district meeting here in Slave. It was a good time, our district leader gave a good training on making our studies more effective. However, the real highlight from that was a little prank elder Hunsaker and I pulled haha... He served his last 6 months in Fort McMurray and a member up there gave him a game called "bean boozled". It's basically a game where you eat a bunch of different jelly bellys and they could either be a really good flavor or something super gross, flavors like vomit, canned dog food, booger, Clorox wipe, stinky socks, etc. I tried a few, and I couldn't even finish them, they are fetching gross k. We put a bowl of them out at district meeting and everyone took some and realized they were gross and spit them out and we had a good laugh. But then Elder Sortomme (yes the legend), basically the Dwight Schrute of our district, took another handful and downed them.... Then another handful... Then another.... He just kept shoveling them in as the meeting went on and he wasn't even phased! I could even smell them in his mouth from across the table haha! He ate pretty much the whole bowl and was just carrying on like normal and now we all think he is part goat. It was quite amazing. 

This is Bear, a cool dog we walk every Monday for a lady with health issues

The main highlight of this week was definitely Sunday. It was one of those roller coaster days where it goes good and then bad. Only one of the investigators we have been working with came to church (Len) and we were expecting another big turnout with Blake's family and a few other people so that was a bummer. Sacrament meeting starting out great, we got to participate in a baby blessing and it was a cool experience. There were some nice testimonies born, and then there was some less nice, somewhat apostate testimonies born as well towards the end of the meeting haha. After that we taught a good gospel principles lesson, had a good priesthood lesson, and then after church some not so good, frustrating things happened. 

After sacrament meeting we went up to Wabasca with the Parks to have a mini sacrament meeting up there, and bless two of their babies. We were hoping our investigator who wants to get baptized at the end of the month would be able to come to that and meet with us after, but the darn Super Bowl got in the way of that. When we walked in the house we were having it at we could all instantly feel the spirit there. We basically had a normal sacrament/fast and testimony meeting there with hymns and everything, and we got to participate in two more baby blessings. The spirit was there so strong the whole time.

 Afterwards they fed us a great meal and we got talking to this guy who wasn't a member and wasn't religious but he recently had a pretty miraculous experience that pretty much assured him that God is real. He really liked the feeling he got during the sacrament service and seeing his baby receive a blessing. We talked with him a little more and now he wants to meet with us next time we go up there! So ultimately it ended up being an awesome day:) 

Other than those few highlights, not a whole lot of super noteworthy things happened this week! We had a good lesson with Len on Saturday, did a lot of tracting and finding, did some service, went to a less active kids hockey game (hockey is dope), and just normal missionary things. It was another good week for me; I am continuing to see the Lords hand in the work and in my life more and more each day. If you all remember to pray, study your scriptures, go to church, and try to do what Heavenly Father wants you to do each day, then I can promise you all that you will see the same results :)   I love you all, thanks for the support! Have a great week!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Week 18, 1/25/16

Hi everyone! This week was full of driving, driving, driving, driving, a little missionary work, and more driving. Between driving down to Edmonton, exchanges, and going up to Wabasca again, we ended up driving about 1300 kilometres (800 miles) this past week! We were in the car about 15 hours just with those trips, let alone driving around Slave Lake. It was still a great week though! 

Elder Hunsaker and I are getting to be pretty good friends and we have a good time. At the beginning of the week we had the opportunity to hear from a couple apostles and other general authorities at the first ever worldwide missionary training broadcast. It was awesome I learned so much! Then right after that we had a ZTM and got more good training, then after we drove back to slave lake after that, we got to watch the face to face youth fireside with Elder Rasband! So it was basically a whole day of driving, sitting, and listening. It was pretty relaxing and nice to just be able to sit back and be taught by the spirit! 

A map of Elberta showing where we have driven in black

Friday and Saturday was exchanges and I got to go to Barrhead with.... Yep you guessed it. The legend.  Elder Sortomme.  Nothing too interesting happened there unfortunately. On Saturday when I got back from exchanges we had lunch and then hopped back in the car and headed up to Wabasca, a sketchy town about an hour and a half north. Our investigator Txxxxxx, who is on date for February 27th, cooked an awesome meal for us and we taught him the plan of salvation. This is his fourth or fifth time taking the lessons so he understands everything pretty well, but it was really good to finally get to actually have a lesson with him! We visited a few other less actives up there briefly afterwards and then headed back. Other than that nothing to noteworthy really happened missionary work wise this week. We went 6 days in a row with at least one lesson getting cancelled every day haha, it was a bit frustrating but it happens. 

                               This is what its like driving in Alberta in winter when there is little light .

In other news I FINALLY saw the northern lights!!! Awhile ago I signed up for this email subscription that sends you emails when the northern lights are likely to be out in the area. Wednesday night/ Thursday morning (it was like 3 am) I woke up to my annoying email notification sound and it was a "northern lights red alert," so I woke up Elder Hunsaker and we drove about 10 minutes out of town where it was dark and they were definitely there! They weren't super bright and magnificent, but they were still really cool. I can check that off the bucket list now:) Well I hope you all had a great week! Thanks for all the love and support, you're all the best<3 Elder Bonny out.

Week 19, 2/1/16

(Sorry, blog week posts out of order)

There are only 2 seasons in Canada...

Mi semana era más fina que los pelos de un sapo‏. I figured I would start off in Spanish this week to confuse you guys. Anyways, hola everyone - this week was absolutely great!!! We definitely saw a few miracles. The work is going well here in Slave Lake! Let me tell you guys about it.

Towards the beginning of the week we had a lesson with our investigator Bxxx and his family. He is a super awesome, kind, humble guy, and he has a rock solid testimony of the gospel. He has been out of town working for a while but he got back a few weeks ago and he's been coming to church regularly. He has quit drinking, smoking, and coffee and is super committed to the gospel. The only reason he isn't baptized yet is because he needs to get married, and he is probably waiting to get married until his girlfriend commits to the gospel so he can have an eternal marriage. They are one of those families that has a lot of kids from different past relationships... I think they have like 19 kids between the two of them haha.  I've only met 9 of them.
Recently discovered throwback pic to the days of Payne
But anyways, we taught Bxxxx and his girlfriend and two of her daughters earlier in the week. We had met with them a few weeks before and taught the restoration and introduced the Book of Mormon to them and invited them to read it, so we asked if they read any of it.... One of the daughters read the WHOLE THING. In like two weekends. WHAT?! The others had also done a little reading... But we were both pretty taken back. It ended up being a very spiritually powerful lesson with them. Later in the week on Saturday we had another appointment scheduled with them. When we got there, Bxxxx told us that none of the daughters could meet that night, but we could teach his boys instead. So we taught his four sons who range from age 8-13, and they are totally awesome!!! They understand everything so well and they want to be baptized! The next day they all came to church, and they all seemed to really enjoy it. It was Bxxxx, his girlfriend Bxx, her three daughters who are in their 20s, two of her daughters brought their baby/toddler boys, and all of his sons came too! 

So between them and two other investigators who came, we had 11 investigators at church!!  So we were pretty stoked about that to say the least. We are teaching them all tonight and hopefully they will all be on date for baptism after we are done there;) So that was the main highlight of the week. 

Just for fun we did a "missionaries in snow" photo shoot  :)

Other than that we helped a couple people move as usual, did lots of pretty unsuccessful finding, and had a great lesson with our awesome investigator Lxx. He is super close to accepting a baptismal date in my opinion. 

In other news at the beginning of the week it was super warm for a few days!! It got up to like 6 degrees Celsius it was so warm we didn't even need our jackets! 🌞 But now its cold again so everything that was melting is now frozen again, and there is literally ice everywhere!  We have to walk super carefully all the time. 

We also had a branch family history night, or at least attempted it. Other than us, the Parks, and the Relief Society president, only four people came haha. But some good definitely came from it.  Before it started Elder Hunsaker and I were training ourselves on how to do it so we could help other people (I did like zero family history before my mission.... my bad), and I found 19 names to take to the temple!! That just goes to show if you think your family history is pretty much done already, there's probably a lot more work to be done, you just need to find it ;) Well I hope you all had a great week too:) I love you all, God loves you all, and the church is true ️ byeee

                                               As you can clearly see, I dominated.