Sunday, November 2, 2008

Notes from Sam -- 29 October 2008

Ryan Ormerod's baptism

Elders McIntosh, Peterson, and Key on a District Hike in Blackburn

Dear family,

I’m staying in Blackburn with Elder Stevens! As expected. Elder Stevens is really happy about it, which I find pretty flattering. I would have enjoyed the novelty being transferred and exploring a new area, but I think staying with Elder Stevens will be a lot better for me. I had similar feelings when Elder Adams and I stayed in Manchester for three months – when transfer calls came and I was staying, I was a bit disappointed, but over the next six weeks I was able to learn and grow really significantly as a missionary and develop a much tighter friendship with Elder Adams. So I think there’s potential for this next transfer to be really great.

Elder McIntosh and Elder Peterson are staying in Chorley 2, and they’re also happy about the way it’s worked out. Elder Powrie is staying too, so our district is exactly the same as last transfer except for Elder Key, who is going home and will be replaced by our new zone leader, Elder Dumitrescu. He is from Romania(!). I’m pretty rusty on my Romanian, but I do remember a few handy phrases from “Talk Now: Romanian”: “Ajutor!”, “Chemati salvarea,” and “Cineva mi-a furat pasaportul” (respectively, “Help!”, “Send for an ambulance,” and “Someone stole my passport”). Maybe I can make some polite small-talk with Elder Dumitrescu at district leaders’ council. : )

Jason and Emma are doing really, really well. On Friday a member invited us and them over for tea and we taught a lesson afterwards. We explained baptism and the law of chastity and how they need to be married before they can be baptized. Apparently Emma has always wanted to get married – Jason is the one who’s had the concern about it. And during the lesson, he told us that all of us a sudden he’d felt really strongly that he should get married! Jason and Emma both have such good hearts and such a strong desire to do the right thing, and Jason in particular has been really open to the Spirit the whole time we’ve taught. They came to church on Sunday and had a good experience again. I think Jason is still struggling a little bit with the idea of marriage, though. The other day we stopped by and talked to him at the door and he asked if we could pray with him that he could have strength to go forward and do what he has to. They’re such a great family. We’re praying for them.

The new quality gospel conversation key indicator is helping us a lot. I’ve had some trouble being excited about finding new investigators over the past few months, but now that I have something to measure how well I do at finding every day I’m more motivated to really push myself. It’s been great for our area, too. Elder Stevens and I have been blessed with 5 new investigators in just the past two days! I’m looking forward to following up with all these people and finding more.

President Robert C. Oaks, our Area President, came to our zone conference. He and Sister Oaks gave some great training. President Oaks has a very deep and booming voice which is really fun to listen to. He focused a lot on the importance of the Holy Ghost in his training, and compared the gift of the Holy Ghost to a brand-new Porsche. He had us imagine waking up on our sixteenth birthday with the Porsche sitting on the driveway, getting in and firing it up (he even did the sound effects for revving the engine) – and then driving it to the garage, parking it, and just going about our daily business. Of course we wouldn’t do that! We’d go out and test it out. So since we all have the Holy Ghost, a gift even greater than a new Porsche, it only makes sense for us to use it as much as possible. Since zone conference I’ve been working on relying on the Spirit more – I realized I’d gotten into the habit of relying on my own skills and experience (which is a bit easier than following the Spirit sometimes) – and it’s worked. I’ve been a lot happier about myself and missionary work in general. We really do have the Holy Ghost! And when we use it, it really is even better than having a Porsche.

I'm out of time. : ( Sorry! More great stuff next week.

Elder Pimentel

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