Monday, January 15, 2018

Week 70

What a good and tiring week it has been!

Last Monday we went to the church with some other Elders and played volleyball! It was fun! Then at 6:00 it was back to work finding!

Tuesday Elder Selander and I held our ZLC conference for all of our DL's. After that it was finding again for the rest of the day. I had one of the most crazy experiences ever while teaching two Brazilian girls! I was teaching these two with another Elder from Galway. By then end of the lesson they both were literally in tears because they felt the Spirit so strong! It was a teaching experience I will never forget! It is hard to put into words what we all felt. That night we drove up to Dublin to stay the night before our All Ireland Conference that would be held the next day. It was great to see and stay in Elder Valiati's flat. He is ma bois!

Wednesday was the All Ireland Conference. Immediatley following our conference Elder Selander and I took a plane to Edinburgh with our AP's. We had to wait for our take off for a long time because of the fog. It is so foggy in Ireland!

Thursday we spent the majority of the day in Edinburgh! It is always so good to come back and be in Scotland. I love this city! We finally left for the airport at 6:00. Actually got on the airplane at 7:00 and then didn't land in Dublin until 11:00. We could not take off again because the weather was so bad. It is only a 45 minute flight! We had a lot of travel time with little sleep. The work continues! :)

Friday when we finally got back to Cork we tried our best to set up appointments for our exchanges with the other Elders for Saturday. Friday was wet here in Southern Ireland! It rained all day. Actually I should say it poured all day. It was the first time since my arrival here in Cork where we had to come back to our flat to eat tea. The reason, we were so wet we had to change into some other clothes. hahaha! crazy!

Saturday I worked with Elder Skelton. He is from Arizona. He's a brand new, great missionary. Much better than I was when I started out. :) It was a fun day. We did a lot of finding!

Sunday. Like I have said in the past Sunday's are great! The sacrament always helps me reset for the coming week. I love to get covered by Christ's atonement and get going again! I love it!

We are still progressing Sarah. She is our 10 year old. She is an amazing young girl! She'll be getting baptized the end of January. She's a blessing from God :)

I sent this to a member of my ward but I would like to share this thought with everyone!

My mission, the Scotland Ireland mission, is the best mission in the world. We invite everyone we teach to be baptized when we teach them about the First Vision. We invite them for baptisim when the Spirit is most present. When I teach others about Jospeh Smith I teach with power and love. This is always the best time to invite one for baptism. When you teach your friends the importance of Jospeh Smith, the Spirit will fill the room.

I have memorized word for word certain parts of Joseph Smith's first vision. When I teach my friends I like to use His words. After reciting His story, I wait. I like to keep waiting in silence to let the still small voice pierce their souls. Oh what a blessing it is to watch peoples reactions when they come to know that Jospeh Smith is indeed a prophet.

Here are Joseph Smith's words found in Joseph Smith History:
7 I was at this time in my fifteenth year
8 During this time of great excitement my mind was called up to serious reflection and great uneasiness; but though my feelings were deep and often poignant, still I kept myself aloof from all these parties,
10 I often said to myself: What is to be done? Who of all these parties are right; or, are they all wrong together? If any one of them be right, which is it, and how shall I know it?
11  I was one day reading the Epistle of James, first chapter and fifth verse, which reads: If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
12 Never did any passage of scripture come with more power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine.
13 At length I came to the conclusion that I must either remain in darkness and confusion, or else I must do as James directs, that is, ask of God. 
14 It was on the morning of a beautiful, clear day, early in the spring of eighteen hundred and twenty. It was the first time in my life that I had made such an attempt
15  finding myself alone, I kneeled down and began to offer up the desires of my heart to God. I had scarcely done so, when immediately I was seized upon by some power which entirely overcame me, and had such an astonishing influence over me as to bind my tongue so that I could not speak. Thick darkness gathered around me, and it seemed to me for a time as if I were doomed to sudden destruction.
16 just at this moment of great alarm, I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me.
17  When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!


I hope you all feel something after hearing that! I want you all to know that, that story shakes me to my very bones. I am so grateful for the prophet Jospeh Smith. I am grateful for his sacrifice to bring about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that what he saw and then what he said about it is true. I hope one day all of you too will be able to share this special message with people that you love very much.

I love you all!

Monday, January 8, 2018

Week 69

Bliain Nua Sásta

That is HAPPY NEW YEAR in the Irish language!

Last Monday and Tuesday were just pretty relaxed because of the holiday. But after the long break I wanted to get out and work again. That is good to see!

Wednesday was a full day of finding and teaching. We had to make the most out of our time because in the evening we had to drive up to Dublin. We left at about half 7 and got to the Zone Leaders flat around half 9. It was a good long drive. That night we listened to one of our Senior Couples presentation on the Book Of Mormon. They have 20 years of archaeology experience in Mexico regarding the Book Of Mormon. It was a way cool presentation.

Thursday morning we woke up at 5 in the morning to make our flight to Edinburgh for our MLC conference. Both of the Dublin ZL's woke up really sick that morning and ended up not coming with us. As a result of that my companion, Elder Selander, was sick the rest of the week! So Thursday was our MIC conference in Edinburgh. All of the leaders form the mission attended. It was great conference! We were instructed on our 2018 goals. God has given us a second chance to baptize 450 souls! For the year 2017, the Scotland Ireland mission achieved 407 baptisms. Our goal for the year was 450. 407 for our mission is an amazing effort but we can do better!

Later that evening we took a flight back home with President Thompson. We then drove back to Dublin and stayed there for the night.

Friday I was able to drive back down to Cork while my comp was trying his best to feel better... It didn't work. During the drive to Cork I got a call from President Donaldson. He gave us an assignment. The Elders in Galway are having some major problems with their flat.  They came and stayed with us in our flat until they found a new flat to live in. This actually worked out very nicely. My companion, Elder Selander, was so sick I had one of the Galway Elders stay home with him so I could get out and work. Haha. Friday and Saturday ended up being two days of finding!

Sunday was church. We had 1 friend come to church. She is 10 years old. The little sister of one of the branch's recent converts. So we have been teaching her.

That was pretty much my week. This week will also be a week where we will not spend much time in Cork... We have our all Ireland conference in Dublin on Wednesday. Right after that we will have exchanges with the AP's in Edinburgh on Thursday. So I wont be back to Cork until Friday... We are crazy busy!

Love you all!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Week 68

Finally I have a chance to e-mail all of you! It is crazy how fast time flies. It was like yesterday when I was getting on an airplane flying to England to start my missionary experience at the Preston MTC. That was in September of 2016. Now it is 2018. Crazy!

2017 was the best year of my life!

Dundee pt. 1 to Edinburgh 
Edinburgh to Dublin
Dublin to Glasgow
Glasgow to Dundee pt. 2
Dundee pt. 2 to Cork

Each of these places holds a deep and sacred place in my heart. They are all very different for many different reasons. But they have all brought me so much happiness! Why? These are all places where I have come to know and love different cultures. These are all places that I have learned to love the people I serve. These are all places that have brought me closer to my Savior, Jesus Christ. These are all places that have brought me to the depths of humility. These are all places where I have found a perfect love for my Savior and for my Father In Heaven. These are all places that will have forever changed my life for the better.

Moroni 8:26
"And the remission of sins bringeth meekness, and lowliness of heart; and because of meekness and lowliness of heart; cometh the visitation of the Holy Ghost, which Comforter filleth with hope and perfect love, which love endureth by diligence unto prayer, until the end shall come, when all saints shall dwell with God".

I love Cork so much! I love Ireland so much!

Christmas and New Year’s were very special and happy days for me! It was weird at Christmas time not knowing anyone in the ward but it was okay. I was so grateful for the chance to just talk to my family!

This last week was good. We are spending the majority of our time finding new people to teach. I am working as hard as ever! I will be heading back to Edinburgh this week for MlC. I will by flying over on Thursday. I am excited for that!

I have to go now to go get my haircut!

I love you all so much!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Week 67

We spoke to Elder Gowans on Christmas day over Skype.

Elder Gowans is loving Cork, Ireland. He shared some fun stories and facts with us since his arrival to Cork last week.

There is one branch in Cork with 80 - 90 active members. Being a zone leader he has already had to make visits to Limerick, and Galway. He said the drive up north to those cities was beautiful. 

It is much warmer it is in Cork, Ireland than it is in Dundee, Scotland. Brett says he normally wears up to 4 layers of clothing at this time in Dundee. In Cork he is wearing just one light jacket. We have personally noticed that it is usually around 10 degrees warmer in Cork.

Brett has served 9 out of his 16 months on his mission in Dundee. This past Sunday the Bishop asked Brett to come up in sacrament meeting and share his testimony with the ward before leaving. Brett said that he had a real hard time doing this. He said he started to cry as he looked at the people he has served with for so long. He said that he loves Dundee and will never forget his time there.

Before the call ended he shared one more funny story that we thought we would pass along.

At 7:30 p.m. on Christmas Eve, Elder Gowans had both keys to the door of their flat in his pocket. When the flat door closes it locks automatically. He and his companion, Elder Selander, were moving stuff into the flat when Brett decided to put the keys on the counter inside the flat. There were still more items to be moved into the flat and when Brett walked outside where his companion was Elder Selander asked him if he had just locked them out of the flat! Yup.

They ended up calling the police but the police told them over the phone that there was nothing they could do. The police told them to try the fire department. Apparently they have a way where you can 'blow up' a lock. They called the fire department and they were able to help. They showed up in there fire truck. Brett said the he along with his companion and many 'neighbors' all looked on as the the firemen blew up the lock. (Don't worry. A new lock is on the door.)

Brett said that he got a picture taken with all of them and will send it next week.

He also wanted us to thank all of you that have supported him over these past 16 months.

Thank you!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Week 66

Sorry for no e-mail yesterday. I don't have a lot of time to write today either.

I am doing good! I was moving all day yesterday and a bit of today. I am back in Ireland again! I am in a city at the very bottom of Ireland. I am in Cork. It pretty much reminds me of a mini Dublin!

My new comp is Elder Selander from Alpine, Utah. :) He is a good Elder and is very nice. I am still working as a Zone Leader.


Monday, December 11, 2017

Week 65

This last Monday we went out to St. Andrews and had some fun looking around and just being with other missionaries. Halfway through p-day I started to feel really sick. Sure enough by 6:00 I was done. I had the flu. I was disappointed because I had it like 3 weeks ago.

Tuesday we had the All Scotland Christmas conference which was really fun. I did not enjoy it as much because I was so sick. We watched the Disney movie Moana. It was good. After that we played games. After that we went to bed. We got up the next morning at 5:30 a.m. so I did not get a lot of sleep.

Wednesday we had exchanges. I tried my best to work hard through it. I took a couple breaks here and there and made it through the day.

Thursday was sad day for us... I had to say goodbye to Henry our recent convert. He is so awesome! He is heading back to China for the holiday season and will not return until January. I got a picture taken with him when we said goodbye.

Friday I was feeling a wee bit better. Not as good as I had hoped but better. We worked all day finding.

Saturday we had a few lessons which was nice and then we went out and did more finding.

Sunday we had a our baptism! Athieng was baptized which was so great. It has been a blessing to be able to teach her. She is so great! She is our miracle from Uganda!

I love you all!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Week 64

Hey everyone! 

Here is what has happened this past week in Dundee.

Monday we had a friend come visit us missionaries! Her name is Zoe and she is from China. She is studying right now in Edinburgh. We spent our p-day with her and had dinner.

Tuesday we spent the entire day finding. It was freezing cold. I mean like really cold. We spent our day in the streets trying our best to stop and to talk people! We also had DA which was good and made it all better to get out of the cold. At night our recent convert Henry invited us over to his flat to watch the Prophet of the restoration movie. It was a great night to be to watch Henry better understand what the prophet Joseph really experienced.

Wednesday we went on exchanges with the Kirckaldy Elders. I don't know if you remember but I went on an exchange with a Ugandan Elder back in Glasgow.... He has now followed me again to our Dundee zone. I got to work with him again and it was great! Elder Cosmas! The best part of the day was he was able to help teach our investigator who is also from Uganda! It was really good to have someone from Uganda teach. Together we taught her the word of wisdom! She knows that the Book of Mormon is true. She also said that whatever the Lord asks her she is willing to follow. The Book of Mormon brings us so many miracles. After our second lesson with her I told her to read Alma 32. She did. She said she had one of the most spiritual experiences ever reading those versus! The Book of Mormon is true! I know it! It is true because I have witnessed first hand how it has blessed my life and other peoples lives from all around the world! She is getting baptized this Sunday! God is good. D&C 6:23

Thursday was another day full of finding! It was great but it was again very very cold. Go figure. It was the first snow of winter. Yep it has started snowing.

Friday. It was crazy to wake up and realize that it is December. And another full day of finding! It is really hard to find people to teach because everyone is so busy! We will keep trying. We will keep being obedient! Had another DA with a family that went really well!

Saturday. Another DA to keep us warm! We taught Athieng at the church at half 7. She is so prepared! She is honestly a good friend to me as well.

Sunday was stake conference. It was great. We had two investigators come to church. Sylvia, Henry, Majeed, and Ross were also at church! It is so good to see them all active! It was a great meeting where the Spirit was felt. a member of the quorum of the seventy spoke. Elder Homer. After stake conference we went out to find for the rest of the day!

I love you all!

Monday, November 27, 2017

Week 63

Good week here in the D!

Last Monday was great. We were able to have some fun on P-day and then go out and get some work in from the hours of 6:00-9:00.

Tuesday was our district meeting in the morning. We then got out and did some finding for the majority of the rest of the day. We also taught a lesson to our recent convert, Henry. We are preparing him about receiving the priesthood. This will happen this Sunday! This is so great! Later we went out to St. Andrews with Ross. We taught a lesson to one of our investigators. Ross gave me a pink Scotland jersey for Christmas. He is such a good guy. He told me that when I come back over after my mission I need to bring him a RSL jersey. I better make that happen!

Wednesday we went on exchanges with the Elders from Arbroath. I was with Elder Rodriguez. He is from Spain. It was a great day. We found and taught another one of our investigators! Athieng. She is from Uganda! She is already a legend. We taught her a great lesson where the Spirit was present. All is good!

Thursday we had another full day of finding. This baltic weather is so cold! End of story. We did not have a Thanksgiving dinner today. We did later in the week!

Friday another day of exchanges in Edinburgh. We worked with the APs. It was one of the coldest days of my life. I was dying. Even with 4 coats on..... ah oh well, the work goes on. It was great to be back in Edinburgh. It is always great to see some old faces and work the old area! I love it there.

Saturday we did more finding and did our best to get people out to church. Other than that just posting up in the city talking to people. At half 1:00 the Sisters and Elders went to a members home to have a proper Thanksgiving! It was the best!!!!! 

- Turkey
- Sweet Potatoes w/marshmallows
- Stuffing
- Mashed potatoes 
- Corn
- Gravy 
- And of course pumpkin pie!

It was so good! I ate so much food! I literally could not eat one more bite. So good.

Sunday was great day! We had our friend Athieng there! She came to all three hours. She stayed for the lunch and mingle after. She also attended the baptism. She was there for a long time! After all of that we went back over for leftovers from Thanksgiving dinner! It was with the same family! They are here from America. They live here now. It was the best!

Recently I have been studying the scriptural phrase 'Receive and Retain'. Mainly the word 'Retain'. There are many ways we can retain a remission of our sins. One of the best ways is by being humble and submissive. Read Mosiah 4:11-12 to find out why.

Love you all!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Week 62

What a blessed week we have had in Dundee! This last week was a grind but also so full of the Spirit. The Lord truly does want to shower his blessings upon those who are diligent and obedient! 

Last Monday was transfers. We spent all day driving everyone around and making sure they got to the right places and the right time! Then at 7:00 p.m. we drove the new Kirkcaldy Elders out to their flat. That took up most of the night.

Tuesday was a full day of finding. We didn't have a successful day but that is okay... One of our baptismal candidates had there baptismal interview on Tuesday. Everything went as planned which was great! 

Wednesday we had another full day of finding. 9 hours in the street. We also had some lessons planned but they fell through. Not good.

Thursday morning we drove to Edinburgh for MLC. It was great. Right now the mission has passed the number of baptisms we had last year at this time. We need about 90 more baptisms to complete our mission year goal! Every companionship needs to find one before the new year! Our meeting was focussed on 'finding the one'! We then came back to Dundee and went to work. It was so cold! I mean cold! I had on three jackets and a coat and I was still shivering! Crazy.

Friday we were finally able to teach a lesson to someone. It went really good! She is really cool and ended coming to church this past week! At 3:00 we went to the church to fill up the Baptismal font. At half 6 we had our baptism! We had such a great turnout from the ward! We were able to baptize both Majeed and Henry! President Donaldson and I performed the ordinances. What a special night! That helped make the rest of the week. It was all worth it.

Saturday we had 5 lessons set up with new people but again they all fell through. It is so frustrating. We spent the rest of the day doing proselyting.

Sunday was great. Both of our baptisms were confirmed members. It was so great! We saw so many tender mercies this week. It was a Spirit filled week! ya ken?

I love you all!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Week 61

To get started. I will be staying in Dundee for another transfer. I will also continue working with Elder Keim! This transfer will last right up to Christmas. I will have officially served in Dundee now for 9 months of my mission when next transfers occur!

The other news is we will be baptizing 2 people this coming week! What a Miracle! Those being baptized are Majeed and H****. Majeed has been taught now for 8 months. President Donaldson came up and interviewed him this last week. After the interview we were told he can now be baptized this Friday! The other part of this story is that our other Investigator H**** was scared to death to be baptized this next Sunday. We had some really good spiritual lessons with him this past week and now he too wants to be baptized this Friday with Majeed! President Donaldson will come back to Dundee and baptize Majeed. This is so great! H**** is 18 years old. He is from China. He studies math here at the university. His faith is incredible. His willingness to act on what is good got him to where he is now.

Other than that nothing much new has happened here in Dundee. We have been doing a lot of finding and working with a lot people helping them progress towards baptism! How blessed both Elder Keim and I are to have seen all of these miracles!

Last p-day we were able to go to the coast and look at some cool old castle ruins. We had a bit of fun doing that!

Tuesday we had DM and then more finding. We also drove down to Kirkcaldy to do a baptismal interview. We also taught a new investigator named Cupar across the water.

Thursday was bitter cold! It's the darn wind that gets you! We taught Henry on Wednesday and Thursday. We also taught a couple of more lessons on Friday which also included Henry.

Saturday was move calls. This will be a 5 week transfer. We taught a lesson with Sam. Sam is a member who is from Hong Kong, he lives in St. Andrews. We also met up with President Donaldson again to talk through the baptismal plans regarding Majeed.

Sunday is always a great day. We said our goodbye's to Lucy Keogh. Lucy is leaving today for her full-time mission!

I love you all!

Monday, November 6, 2017

Week 60

What a great week here in Dundee!

Last Monday Elder Keim and I played some basketball out in Baxter park. I also practiced some futbol and juggled 200 first time back. It is now officially cold. The sun may be out but that doesn't stop the wind from cutting right through you to your very soul. We finished the day proselyting. We are trying our best to find the elect or to let them find us.

Tuesday we had district meeting here in Dundee. So no travel. We spent the rest of the day proselyting until 5:00. We then headed back to our flat because of mission rules for Halloween. Who knows what the Scots people are up to on Halloween night. Me and my boi Elder Keim, did go over to the church to see how the ward party was getting along.

Wednesday was good day. We taught one new lesson to a person we found.

My diet consists of either Subway or McDonald's for lunch. Then whichever one we did not eat at for lunch we eat at the other one for tea. My diet is so bad. I am getting fat hahah. But this is the best way to save time trying to do the Lord's work. It's so funny. Elder Keim and I lay down at night and talk about how fat we are getting. ahah.

Thursday was another great day! We went on exchanges with the Elders from Arbroath. I was with Elder Baklan. He is from the Ukraine. I worked with him previously when we both served in Edinburgh. It was a great split. We were able to set up some lessons as well as teach Sylvia. I also had a guy pay for our tea. Why? A while back, one night, he was so drunk he tried to punch me. When I saw him again in the street I reminded him of that night when he was drunk. He couldn't remember it but felt bad about it. So he bought us our tea! McDonald's ahhah! Good guy.  Good exchange. Fun day. 

Friday I went on another exchange with the Elders from Dunfermline. We taught a new investigator and then proselyted most of the day. Where did we go for lunch you ask? Subway. Overall just a good fun day. Not much else happened. I truly love being a missionary. I'm trying my best to help the Lord's work move forward. It is not my work, but His.

Saturday. Another great day! =) We were able to teach one of our investigators, Henry. He is from China. Sylvia came and helped us teach him! He had taken so many notes from the Book of Mormon from the chapter we gave him to read. We taught him about the restoration. He really enjoyed it. After that we had tea with Anne Harrison. It is always so good to see her! She is so kind to us. Later on we drove out to St. Andrews to teach another investigator Feranndo. After our lesson he agreed to come to church!

Sunday was Bonfire night! Also called Guy Fawkes night.
We had our Sunday service and then went out and taught a investigator after church. We worked until 6:00 and then mission rules had back in our flat. We watched fireworks and a bonfire which was close to our flat. It was so fun! To finish off our day Elder Keim and I just laid down by our little fire.

That was my week =)

I love you all!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Week 59

This week was killer here in Dundee. The Spirit was felt throughout the week after seeing miracle after miracle.

Monday, p day, we went to St. Andrews. Elder Keim had never seen the old course and the bridge. After that we went and ate pizza at Law hill.

Tuesday and Wednesday were both full days of finding. We had no lessons set up so both days were just out kicking it in the city all day long. We did have a tea appointment at the Bishops home Wednesday evening. That is always so nice! 

Thursday we had 5 lessons set up and all of them fell through. We had our interviews with President Donaldson. And then later that evening we had a Dundee stake fireside! Elder Dale G Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke to us. President and Sister Donaldson also spoke. All of the talks were so amazing! I felt the Spirit so strong! We brought Sylvia to the fireside and and she really enjoyed it. Here are some quotes that I recorded from the fireside.

- It is my responsibility to decide what I want to be in life.
- Do I choose love or hate?
- Inspirational or cryptic? 
- Positive or negative?

These are all my choices. 

- The Saviors declaration to the Nephite people in 3rd Nephi: "MY JOY IS FULL" ponder on that.
- The Savior loves to heal. 
- 2nd Nephi chapter 1. Talks to parents and what they should want for their children. 

Friday was great too! Elder Renlund was present for our ALL SCOTLAND missionary conference here in Dundee! It is always great to see some old friends. And then to be able to hear a great talk from an Apostle of the Lord! Elder Renlund spoke to us about these three main messages.

1. The Lord wants to thank you on behalf of Him and His church. 
2. You have been called here by God. If you don't know that then you need to figure that out down to your bones!
3. President and Sister Donaldson are called here by God. They love you!

When Elder Renlund spoke to us about #2 the Spirit spoke to me. He testified again to me that this is true. When I opened my call a year ago I knew right then that this is where I needed to serve. This was just another powerful reminder from the Spirit and from an Apostle why I have been called here.

The SIM is best mission on the face of this earth!

After conference we were busy driving people to the bus and train stations. Once we finished all of that we took one of my first converts, my boy, Ross out to work with us to St. Andrews. We had a lesson to teach and it was great for him and for us to have him help teach. After that we all went to a chippy and got fish and chips! =)

Saturday was another day of miracles. We taught 4 new people. They were all out on a date! It was a miracle day after a lot of perseverance! =)

Sunday. Another great Sabbath day. After church we enjoyed getting out and finding for the rest of the day.

This coming Tuesday is obviously Halloween. Our day will finish at 5:00 p.m. It's a bummer but oh well!

Love you all!