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

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Week 61, 11/28/16

Hello cuties!

This week was pretty stellar.  THE RETURN is going well!  There still isn't a whole lot of teaching going on here, but it is a good challenge.  I already know the area like the back of my hand, we tract all the time, but our area has a plethora of townhouses that are just begging to be tracted out, so we don't mind.  I am a big advocate of townhouse tracting.  Townhouses are as Nacho Libre would say: "tha baaaest".

First thing is first: STEAK CHALLENGE.  Reader discretion is advised. Tuesday night we had one last supper with an awesome couple down in Leduc.  I kind of talked about it last week, but as part of a food challenge that a lot of missionaries attempt, I ate (in this order):
   -a little fudge coated ice cream bar
   -a 42.7 ounce steak
   -2 biscuits
   -a bowl of salad, mashed potatoes, and corn
   -another little fudge ice cream bar
   -1/4 of a lemon pie COVERED in whipped cream
   -a large marble slab chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwich

Yeah, I know, that is pretty darn gross.  I hit the first wall towards the end of the steak and vegetables when Elder Klunker puked out ridiculous amount (and thus he was disqualified), that grossed me out pretty good and made it pretty tough to continue, but I soldiered on.  I hit the second wall during the pie, cuz lemon pie is gross, and my third wall during the ice cream sandwich.  I don't know how I downed it, but I did.  I ended up gaining 4.4 pounds start to finish, and I had the meat sweats for a few days after.  But I got my membership card and it was totally worth it!

Saturday I went on exchanges with an Elder who has a few struggles to say the least.  It was a good day though, I feel like I was able to build a pretty good relationship with him and help him out a bit.  That is definitely my favourite thing about being in a leadership assignment, helping and ministering to other missionaries.  We taught a great lesson to a less active who straight up told us she wants to come back to church but she just needs some help.

Sunday at church I got to see a ton of awesome members from my last area, since Rutherford, Greenfield, and River Valley all meet in the same building.  I literally felt like I knew almost everyone in the building haha!  That night we did splits for a few hours with some other elders in the zone to help them out with a few things.  We kind of just did the same old stuff, tracting, talking to people on the street, and stopping by potentials, having some good conversations with each other while we were at it.  I wish I had more exciting things to report about but thats basically all this week was.

Yesterday while tracting, a super nice muslim lady gave us a bag of like 6 huge kit-kat bars cuz she felt bad for us knocking on doors in the cold.  Muslim people are so nice.

We have been trying to let everyone know about the new Light the World Christmas initiative. I love the new video!  It shows how being Christlike really is within our reach, and how simple that can be.  We have been asking around for service opportunities a bunch, but EVERYONE in our area is loaded and has everything taken care of apparently.  Elder Klunker and I have gotten tons of entertainment out of marvelling at the size of SO MANY of the houses in the area as we drive from place to place.  We are probably the first or second most affluent area in the mission.  All these millionaires hire people to take care of all their service needs so for the day of service on Dec. 1 we are planning on donating blood -muahahaha!

Most awesome couple in all of Canada!
Well that's it for this week, fam.  It doesn't sound like too eventful of a week just what I wrote, but we are working super hard and touching people's lives here and there so I'm happy 😊. Hope you all had an awesome Thanksgiving!  

Canada doesn't celebrate Thanksgiving but we had our own if we needed more food  :)

Weekly Scripture: Alma 34:38
38 That ye contend no more against the Holy Ghost, but that ye receive it, and take upon you the name of Christ; that ye humble yourselves even to the dust, and worship God, in whatsoever place ye may be in, in spirit and in truth; and that ye live in thanksgiving daily, for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you.

Week 60, 11/21/16

Well, you guessed it.  More transfer chaos!  And it's not even transfers yet! I'll explain:  Wednesday we got a call from the assistants telling us that we were going to be transferring back to the city on Monday.  There is a huge back story, but in short it sufficeth me to say that the Riverbend zone (the zone I have been in my whole mission until going to Leduc) didn't really have any zone leaders, so they needed us there, and they figured now is the best time to make the change since we didn't really have any people we were teaching in our area.  

MILLWOOD Zone...gonna miss em!
So yesterday we moved into the River Valley area, and why did I put "the return" as my subject you might ask? Because River Valley is RIGHT next to my old area where I was for 7 months, and when we had to deal with transfer chaos on three separate occasions, we ended up having to cover River Valley ward, and move temporarily into their apartment.  Collectively I have probably covered River Valley for about 2 weeks before officially getting transferrred here.  So it is basically the return lol.  Same area of Edmonton, same zone, same district, same church building... fun stuff:)  

Here we go...moving back to Edmonton

The Elk Ridge Boys - E. Lofthouse
Most of the week was pretty much just getting ready for this craziness.  Saturday I went on exchanges with Elder Lofthouse (hes from Elk Ridge!!!) and Elder Lara.  It was super fun to finally get to exchange with Elder Lofthouse.  They are both super awesome dudes so we had a good time.  We had a super interesting lunch experience.... The part of the city we were in is pretty much the East India of Edmonton.  SO MANY Hindus and punjabis and muslims.  What could be compared to our church building is their "Gurdwara", except they serve food in lower floor at theirs.  We didn't have tons of money and we wanted a memorable experience so we went in and got some food. It was so different... We had to take off our shoes and socks, put a bandana on our head, and stay on the right side of the room, and then sit down on the floor cross legged to eat our food.  I don't really even know what the food was haha, some sort of Indian food.  It wasn't bad! Everyone was looking at us so weird, but they were super nice to us. 

That is one of my favourite things about Edmonton, the cultural diversity.  It makes for some memorable experiences!  Other than that the day was pretty miserable, just walking around literally all day in the -10 degree weather.   

Yesterday night we had a pretty unbelievable introduction to River Valley, we went to supper with a guy named Rich (figures), and he took us to the super nice gourmet burger restaurant in his spaceship-esque volvo, and probably spent more money on us than anyone has ever spent on me at a restaurant before.  We feasted on an amazingly delicious 4 course meal, and got to hear a lot of words of wisdom and council from this ridiculously wealthy man.  He is a sports agent for some of the best hockey players in the NHL.  Marian Hossa is probably the biggest name, he plays for the blackhawks and he's scored 510 goals in his career... He has also met a bunch of presidents and hall of fame athletes and coaches, movie-stars, etc.  He also helped break one of his clients out of communist Russia forever ago.  Elder Klunker and I were just in awe the whole time haha, it was so cool!   

Riverbend Zone.  Temple 2 weeks in a row!

Awesome member - He isn't too happy we're leaving
Well in a few hours I will be doing a food challenge that could quite possibly be the death of me.... 3 ice cream bars, a 40ish oz steak with vegetables and mashed potatoes as sides, 1/4 of a pie smothered in whipped cream, and a sugar cookie ice cream sandwich to finish it all off.  Its the legendary "steak challenge".  If I eat it all and hold it down for an hour I basically get my legit man card.  WIsh me luck lol.  Ill let you know more about the area next week when I actually know stuff about it.  We are excited to get things going!!  

Love you all have a happy thanksgiving:)  

 Weekly scripture: Jacob 5:41 41 And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard wept, and said unto the servant: What could I have done more for my vineyard?   

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Week 59, 11/16/16

What up!!  This week was another good one. :)  Thursday we had Zone Training Meeting, my first one as a zone leader, and it was pretty sweet!  There was all sorts of chaos being thrown our way at meeting time, but the spirit was still really strong.  Right before we started, the power in the church went out, so we had to move to a room with more natural light, and that ended up being the same room that the baptismal font was by, and towards the end of the meeting when the power was back on the baptismal font started filling up.  It was pretty distracting but the spirit was still super powerful.  Elder Klunker and I were both pretty pleased with the training we gave.  We feel like the whole zone is pretty inspired and motivated to use the Book of Mormon more in their work.  The Book of Mormon is where its at - alright?! 

Pics of our Zone, the biggest in the mission

Friday night and Saturday was pretty awesome, I went on exchanges with one of the assistants and one of my good mission buddies, Elder Mejia. We literally did finding all day, and talked to sooo many people, and honestly it was a great day.  He had a pass-over lesson with the Greenfield/Rutherford Elders (my old area) and I got to go on splits with Elder Sites while they were teaching the lesson, it was fun!  Of course, we went tracting haha.  Just like old times.  It was fun to catch up with him.   

Exchange selfie with AP E. Mejia
The whole rest of the week was mostly finding.  I feel like ever since I have really been trying and putting my best effort into every conversation I have, it has made a huge difference.  Maybe not in the outright results, but people seem genuinely more kind in return, and I feel way better and feel so much more love for the people as well.  This morning we got to go to the temple.  I LOVE THE TEMPLE.   

Missions are so awesome.  I could rant for pages and pages, but I would prefer to have more time to do fun things on my P-day.  Just know that I know that God our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ our Savior live, they love us, and this is their work :)  You all better have an awesome week alright?  Read your scriptures and say your prayers!  You'll get blessings galore.

E Bonny  
Wishing this kid good luck in Toronto Mission

Weekly scripture: Mosiah 26:24  24 He doeth not anything save it be for the benefit of the world; for he loveth the world, even that he layeth down his own life that he may draw all men unto him. Wherefore, he commandeth none that they shall not partake of his salvation.  

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Week 58, 11/8/16

Oh, hey.  This week was PACKED.  Lets get right to it.  
Wednesday I went on exchanges with Elder Dike, one of the Spanish speaking Elders in the zone, so I basically got to be a Spanish Elder for a day!  We (he) taught a lesson in Spanish, we had an English class, went Spanish referral tracting, etc.  It was pretty cool and fun, except it made me wish super badly that I knew Spanish... hopefully someday haha.  It was awesome to get to know Elder Dike better too.   

Me and some members of the Canadian National Hockey team...posing as missionaries at MLC

Thursday was AWESOME.  We had MLC and received some awesome training from President and Sister Pattison and the APs, and basically just enjoyed an outpouring of the spirit.  We will basically be giving the same training and relaying the same information to our zone this Thursday at ZTM, so we have been prepping a lot for that these last few days as well.  I'm Excited! 

Saturday we had another baptism for a nine year old named Juliana.  It was so awesome to see how happy and excited she was, she said it was the best day of her life.  It's always special to see someone entering into the covenant of baptism, even if I haven't been teaching them for a long time and don't know them super well.  I was asked to give a talk on baptism like an hour before the service.... Wasn't my best talk ever haha.  

After the baptism we did some finding in Devon (the town about 15 minutes northwest of Leduc where the chapel is) and tracted into a guy from Africa.... one of the most interesting dudes I have ever met.  He straight up believes in and worships the Egyptian gods.  He was telling us all this crazy stuff that made no sense and trying to explain eygptian theology to us.... it was honestly just entertainment for us.  After we left we were bummed that neither of us thought to record it, so we pulled up facsimile no. 2 in the Book of Abraham and went back and asked him what it meant hahaha.... gotta have some fun when you're tracting all day right? 
                         Deciphering the B. of Abraham facsmile.  Sounds pretty convincing!

Sunday we attempted to watch the regional conference that most all of you probably watched as well.  I say attempted, because we only really got to watch Elder Rasbands talk (which was awesome).  The wifi at the church wasn't working at first and then 3447 other things went wrong, it was a test of patience for sure haha.  Monday morning was pretty unique.  President Pattison came and did comp. study with us and then tracted with us for 45 minutes!  We had an appointment set up with Dallas but it fell through (later that day he called and dropped us... lame), so we just went and did some finding with our mission president.  Never thought I would get to do that.  It was awesome to be able to observe and learn from him. We found a pretty solid potential named Mariah who we are hopeful for.   
Exchange selfie with E. Dike

That's about it for this week.  There have now been 4 investigators baptized and confirmed in the past 7 weeks here, and we are now basically back to starting from scratch.  We have mostly been finding, meeting with some less actives, and preparing for ZTM this week.  I really do love this work, I'm excited to see the miracles the Lord will work through us these next few weeks through our obedience and hard work :) love you all!   

Weekly Scripture: Alma 26:21 21 And now behold, my brethren, what natural man is there that knoweth these things? I say unto you, there is none that knoweth these things, save it be the penitent.   

Shout out to my BFF E. Hunsaker