Monday, August 14, 2017

Week 48

This past week was another wet one! But it was also a good one! =) 

Last p day Elder Woodfield and I were able to go on this awesome hike! We asked President Donaldson if we could go and he agreed! We drove by Loch Lomond and ended up hiking in the lowlands of Scotland. Lets just say I am so out of shape. On the hike we saw some of the most beautiful scenery that I have ever seen in my life! I felt like I was in the movie Lord of the Rings! I love Scotland! And I love Ireland of course! We hiked Ben Cobbler (the cool looking one). And Ben Ime. Ben Ime is the second largest mountain in the lowlands.

Tuesday we started out with our District meeting. We then went out and worked for most of the day. It ranked right up there as one of the most hardest days as missionary. We had so many lessons set up that fell through. So there we were in the streets of Glasgow and it seemed like we attracted almost every single person that has ever hated Mormons. Seriously. The people that we met that night literally hate our church. You always get the usuals but on this day they truly hated us. There was around 20+ people that I talked to and they just tried to hammer us on everything. The BOM. The prophet Joseph Smith. They were calling out our church as false, corrupt, and the Church of the Devil. Supposedly I am brainwashed, corrupt, and of course going to hell. You know me. I had a hard time putting up with all that crap. I came back at them and started to defend my beliefs. I couldn't answer all of there questions, but I did bear my testimony. I told them that I KNOW that what we have is true. They didn't care. They continued to rail on me. Finally I walked away but they pulled me back. And then it was yelling, and cursing. Some even spit at me. I just sat back and listened to them. There did come a point after one got after me I looked up at Heaven and actually wondered if God was there, watching all of this? I said a small prayer and simply asked Him if He was there. I asked Him if he loved me? Then, as I sat there in the middle of the street, with all of this hate surrounding me I felt the feeling of comfort rush through my entire body. I was good to go again! God is real! The story doesn’t end there! More and more people came up to me and and again started to  hammer on me. I again had to go sit down and pray again. This time I had the feeling to ask if the BOM was true! No feeling. I  continued to sit there and then the Spirit brought this thought into my mind. Read the BOM right now! It was right there in my hand, why not! I held it up right then and this is what I read:

And behold, ye do know of yourselves, for ye have witnessed it, that as many of them as are brought to the knowledge of the truth, and to know of the wicked and abominable traditions of their fathers, and are led to believe the holy scriptures, yea, the prophecies of the holy prophets, which are written, which leadeth them to faith on the Lord, and unto repentance, which faith and repentance bringeth a change of heart unto them—
Therefore, as many as have come to this, ye know of yourselves are firm and steadfast in the faith, and in the thing wherewith they have been made free.

God is real. I love this church so much!

Later on in the week I went exchanges with an Elder from Uganda who has no hands. He is one amazing missionary. He converted to the church 2 years ago. What a legend! l also went on exchanges with Elder Wang from China! He also is such a great missionary!

Today we are going out and doing some service. Move calls are also this week. It should be fun week! 

I love you all!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Week 47

This week here in Scotland was a wet one!

Monday. Not too much happened to be honest. We had a lot of things to do to prepare for our All Scotland South Conference in Edinburgh! We also had some free time while in Edinburgh to find a place where I can get an amazing deal on a kilt to bring home!

Tuesday. We attended the All Scotland South Conference! I was able to see Elders Elton, Donovan, Gunderson, Carter, and Swenson to name just a few. I also saw so many other missionaries! The conference itself was so good! We were able to be instructed on the power of inviting with promising specific blessings by President Donaldson! it was great to be apart of the spirit that was felt there! That evening we returned home to Glasgow and went to a pub for some good tea!

Wednesday. A full day of finding and teaching! We also had our interviews with President and Sister Donaldson! I love them both so much. I would say that President Donaldson is one of my biggest role models ever!

Thursday. Another regular day of working. Nothing to crazy happened but we did have to travel back to Edinburgh for our exchanges with the APs.

Friday. We spent the entire day in Edinburgh. I worked with Elder Peacock. He was my old zone leader in the Burgh. I got to spend the entire day there in the Burgh! I love that place so much! I miss it! Sister Donaldson also made us breakfast. It was the best! Exchanges went really well. I had a lot of fun. As you can tell I am enjoying life so much right now!

Saturday. We first had some teaching lessons with some investigators. And then we headed back to Glasgow.

Sunday. Another great day at church. We also worked later on finding and teaching. We are working with a lot of good people right now. We just need to help them progress!

I also saw Sister Stapley this past week. She was a sister missionary that I worked with while in the Burgh. She recently finished her mission but came back to do some touring. She was an amazing missionary! ​

I love you all and thanks for all you do!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Week 46

It was a good wet week here in Glasgee =)  It was a week full of missionary work and other fun stuff!

Elder Woodfield and I spent most of our mornings and evenings cleaning a flat that has been lived in by missionaries for 9 years. It is time to close it down so lets just say it wasn't to pretty.

We have been teaching and finding many people. We have a friend named Kirste. She is so cool. She came to church and enjoyed sacrament meeting. We are seeing her again on Tuesday. Sadly, the girl Ruby I told you about last week went on the internet and looked up a lot of lies and rubbish about us so she does not want to see us anymore. So sad. uugghhhh!

We also went on exchanges with the DLs throughout the zone. I was able to work with a new missionary, Elder Siswick from England. I also worked with Elder Baklan from Airdre. I served with in Elder Baklan in Edinburgh. He was a new missionary then. It was great to see him again and work with him.

Scotland is definitely more colder than Ireland! It looks like I am about to finish off my first pair of shoes. They are wrecked. My nice Eccos were supposed to last me for two years! They have holes right in the bottom of them! The insoles also have holes and my feet get soaked everyday it rains. 

I love this Gospel! I love my mission with all my heart! Last night I was talking with a missionary that I had served with back in Dundee. We were talking about how great the mission is and how great Dundee was. I talked also about how cool Edinburgh and Ireland are. Ireland is one of the coolest places in the world. We talked about how we would not trade these experiences for anything. I cant think of anywhere else I would rather be than right here right now doing what I am doing. Yes, it is hard and yes it is tiring. But it is worth it!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Week 45

What a week we have had here in Glasgow!

I would just like to echo the words of Jacob. 2nd Nephi 10:20And now, my beloved brethren, seeing that our merciful God has given us so great knowledge concerning these things, let us remember him, and lay aside our sins, and not hang down our heads, for we are not cast off; nevertheless, we have been driven out of the land of our inheritance; but we have been led to a better land, for the Lord has made the sea our path, and we are upon an isle of the sea.
1. Let us remember 
2. Lay aside our sins
3. Not hang down our heads

This week in Glasgow, to be honest, was rough. We have been working so hard being the most obedient missionaries we can be and it felt like we have had no success.

To start off the week Elder Woodfield and I had our ZLC. This is where all the DLs come together and we discuss how to help the zone and instruct and help our DLs know how to best move forward. Our APs made an appearance as well. We then had DM and I sat in with the Motherwell district. After DM we were scheduled to go out and teach. All of our appointments canceled. However, we did end up finding one girl on the street named Kirstie. We have met with her a lot but she was unable to make it to church.

I also went on my first exchanges since being made a Zone Leader. I split with Elder Turner from Iowa while Elder Woodfield and Elder Williams stayed and taught three lessons. We spent the day finding and let me remind you it does not stop raining here in Glasgow.... Elder Woodfield and Elder Williams taught this really cool girl from China whose name is Ruby.

Sunday morning I was feeling pretty discouraged. We honestly had worked so hard this past week and it seemed like we had very little success. We had 14 lessons planned this past week and 12 fell through. Then on Sunday morning miracles started to occur. Ruby, the girl who we had met earlier in the week, came to church! She LOVED it!  She also attended the gospel principles class and ended up bearing her testimony on prayer. She came up to us after church and asked us when she could be baptized? She told us that she wants to be baptized before she goes back home to China. We told her that we will start preparing her!

We also had sent out a text message to everyone in our phone who we knew and invited them all to come to church. One man from Angola came! He was taught by missionaries while living back in Angola. He even brought his Book of Mormon to church! We are seeing him later this week! We also have some other people that we are now working with so I am excited for the possibilities that we have this week!

Now I want to go back to the scripture I previously mentioned and the beginning of this letter. 

1. As missionaries, if you go throughout the day not remembering why you are even standing in the rain talking to people you wont be very fruitful. Remember Him in everything you do! Not just some things here and there but in everything. He will provide! 

2. It is hard to help other people come unto Christ when you yourself have not. Lay aside every sin. Again, you can not pick and choose which sins you want to give up. Here a little then there a little. Every sin needs to be laid aside. The Lord will provide! 

3. Do not get discouraged. We are apart of the greatest work ever! We are preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ! Why is it that we get discouraged? The end of this scripture reads, "For the Lord has made the sea our path, and we are upon an isle (Scotland/Ireland) of the sea".

When we are striving to be the best that we can. That is when we reap our rewards of our long-suffering and diligence.


Love you all till next week

Monday, July 17, 2017

Week 44

Well I said goodbye to the Emerald isle this past week and it was rough. I will miss Ireland. I love it!

It was a crazy week! I am super tired but super pumped for this new transfer!  Last week when I e-mailed I was helping move missionaries around. I was always up super late and then up really early in the mornings.

The work here in Glasgow is so good! There are so many people here. The only thing is Scotland is cold and Ireland is hot. It has also been dumping rain here everyday since I came back. It's all okay. I am used to it. I learned it from good ole Dundee!

Finally on Wednesday we had a great full day of finding and teaching again! It was so good to just get out and do missionary work again!

Thursday was great day too! I got to go back to Edinburgh for a training conference. It was a training for all of the ZLs and STLs. It is always great to learn from the Mission Presidency. One of our main goals is to to accomplish 450 baptisms! Right now as a mission we are at 207. It is always a spiritual time when you are at the mission home. I feel the spirit so much. It is such a great time. We talked about how we as a mission need to be more sanctified. We need to have more faith! We are so blessed right now as a mission. But we can do more if we sanctify ourselves even more, which means even more blessings. It is crazy to think about, but so good!

I got to see so many old friends at the conference. Elder Carter from Dublin. He is a  ZL now in Edinburgh. Elder Swenson a ZL in Dublin. Elder Jones, my past AP who is now a ZL in Limerick. And of course Elder Elton. I got to see Elton for just brief moment. I LOVE ELDER ELTON!

Friday and Saturday were full days of finding in the rain and teaching those who want to learn!

Sunday we had a great sacrament service. President Donaldson was speaking at another ward so I got to see him and Sister Donaldson for just a minute. You know how I feel about those two. They are so special!

I am enjoying my mission so much! I am learning so much! I just finished the book of 1st Nephi again. It has become one of my most favorite reads. It teaches us if we do our best the Lord will provide a way. How true that is. When we are devoted missionaries and members of His church, HE WILL PROVIDE A WAY!

Thank you again for all of your love and support!

Elder Gowans

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Week 43

It has been a crazy week! It feels like I have gotten no sleep. I will not be able to explain all that has happened this past week but know that I am doing so good!

have been moved to Glasgow, Scotland. Glasgow is the largest city in the mission. I will be trained as a Zone Leader! I did not see this coming but I am excited and ready to help the missionaries in my zone work their hardest. I am prepared to work harder than I ever have!

My companion is Elder Woodfield. He is from Texas. He is such a good Elder. He has been out for 13 months. I met him for the first time yesterday! Now I know why the entire mission loves him!

Because of transfers yesterday, I first traveled to Belfast and then took the ferry back to Scotland. Once I arrived we had to drive missionaries around until 11:00 p.m. The next day I was up at 5:00 a.m. to again help drive missionaries to where they needed to be. There are about 36 missionaries in our zone. I will take this assignment to learn all that I can and continue to work as hard as I can and improve! We go to Edinburgh this Thursday for MLC training which will be cool.

Dublin is in great hands with Mano and Elder Keim. I worked with Elder Keim in Edinburgh. He is the Elder that is 6 feet 8 inches tall. I love him! He will be the new DL in Dublin. He will continue to train Mano. Mano was in tears when I left for Belfast yesterday. It is always sad and hard to leave someone you love so much. I will miss my boy.

Last week we had the opportunity to go open up a new area in Ireland! Dundalk. We were able to find a flat for the new missionaries coming in. We also went to the Dundalk branch last Sunday. We had 19 members at church!

The Lord is merciful to all those who come unto him with a broken heart and a contrite spirit. I have a testimony of this. I also have a testimony that positive potential demands true repentance. You will have a hard life if there is no change for the positive.

Tell Makayle and Ed congrats! I can't wait to see Isla! Also tell Nicole I love her! I am praying for her too.

I love you all

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Week 42

Alma 34: 11- 41
Verse 32
For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.

Until next week.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Week 41

Another great week this week!

Mano and I saw so many miracles this past week! The Lord truly blesses those who are righteous!

Last Monday was my birthday! It was a good day! The Sisters and the Elders all had lunch in the city and then afterward the Elders headed off to the Wicklow Mountains. We drove around the area and we got to see everything that is beautiful about Ireland! I loved it! We also visited the beer company Guinness. They have their own private home with their own private lake! Got to admit it, it was pretty spectacular! Everything was so green!

Tuesday we had our usual district meeting. Once again it was really good. After that it was off to finding and teaching! We also had a member in our ward who is deaf go with us to hand out pass along cards. He is a wonderful man! Only if we all all could be like him!

Wednesday we had another birthday in our district. It was one of the Sisters birthday. We all went out to lunch with her along with our ward mission leader! It was cool! We went to a buffet and we also had a cake! I also was able to chill hard with my little the boi, Raelie! We play dinosaurs all the time.

Thursday and Friday were also good days! I went on exchanges with Elder Garrick who is from Utah. It was a great day! Crazy things always seem to happen on exchanges. A crazy story from our exchange. As we were walking past a dumpster I found a pair of pink 2015 hyperdunks. I pull them out of the dumpster and they fit me! Man I am so blessed. At 6:00 p.m. we finished our exchanges so me and Mano headed out to our favorite place. Mama Ludlows! She had her house all ready for my birthday party! She made my favorite meal. Chicken rolls! And also my favorite birthday cake, Boston Cream Pie!!!! Holy cow I can say now that I have been to Heaven! She honestly is the best!!!!!

Saturday was Gay Pride day here. We didn't find to many people that day who were open to hear our message. That's okay! Also, Happy Birthday Dad!

Sunday was great day! We had three friends come to church! They all loved it! Our 16 year old lad from Ireland was one of the three who came. He loved it! Sadly, his mum is against him being baptized until he turns 18. Hari, the man we baptized a few weeks ago brought his friend to church. He is also from Nepal. Then we also had a Brazilian come! She is preparing for her baptisim on the 8th of July! Pray for her!

Overall we another good week! I love being a missionary. I love the people of Ireland! I am having a grand old time here! I am loving life!

I love you all!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Week 40

This week was different than most others!

Today is my birthday! I need to thank my family and my comp for all of the presents!

Mano gave me a Scotland jersey! Man I love him so much! He is already a legend! The Elders in my district woke me up early and came over and decorated the flat. We had so much fun! The rest of this past week was also good!

I don't want anyone getting scared, I am fine, but ever since Hari's baptism my allergies have really kicked in! I didn't take care of it when it started a couple of weeks ago but now I am pretty darn sick. I have a throat and lung infection. The hay-fever made the sickness worse. So now I am feeling it! On Saturday Mama Ludlow took me urgent care. After the that we went to the pharmacy. Here is what I ended taking home: 

Pills (6 a day)
Eye drops (Every day when needed)
Inhaler (9 inhales a day)
Cream (Every night) 

Remember no one needs to worry. I am fine, just sick. 
Sleeping has already improved since I started on the medicine. I am doing great! 

This week Mano and I still worked as hard as ever! We continue to see success in finding new people to teach. Now we just need to progress them!

And a happy Father's day to the best dad out there!!!!

I love you all!

(This is an e-mail that was sent to Elder Gowans grandmother, Lavona Areghini, from a friend. We thought we would share it with you all.)

"Dear Lavona. Here is our story.. Bryce, myself, & my brother were on a two week adventure / vacation in Ireland. One evening in Dublin, we were heading back to our hotel at the same time all the stores were closing. All the streets were packed with people. Who do we spy? A group of missionaries so we stop to say "hello". They are super busy doing "street contacting". There were 5 or 6 of them. We talked to them for a while and then I asked who was in charge? That's when an Elder stepped up who had been talking to my brother. After talking to him for awhile I finally looked at his name badge. Hmmmm? I asked him, 'is your mother's name Beth'? His response, 'No, but I do have an Aunt named Beth'. My next question to him, 'Do you know Lavona Areghini'? His response, 'That's my grandma! She just moved from Arizona to Utah to live by us'. I said, 'Yes. I know! She is one of my dearest friends & we want her to come back to Arizona!'.

Can you believe it! On the streets of good old Dublin, Ireland a dazed missionary trying to take in all this information. It was so fun to meet him!

The story doesn't stop there. We went to church with some of my brother's friends on Sunday. Who was there? Elder Gowans! He & his companion confirmed a new convert. Then if that wasn't great enough he gave a wonderful talk on the blessings that can come through paying your tithing! WOWZER!

Afterwards he stopped us briefly & said "hello". He was on his way to teach the investigators class for Sunday School. I told him I had to come to church because if his grandma knew I was here she would want me to "keep an eye on him"! What a great young man, grandson, & missionary you have!

You can be very proud of your posterity Lavona! It is a "grand day" when you hear that your grandkids are being amazing & making excellent decisions when they are away from their family. That encounter made me realize how small the world is when you are a member of the church! I am sure that grandparents have a big influence on their grandkids!

Keep up the good job because it is working!"