Monday, April 26, 2010

Investigators Progressing in Idaho Falls South Stake

Note: In my weekly email to Elder Call, I updated him on some comings and goings in the Beloit Ward, including information about the new YM and YW presidency, Mike Hobbs receiving his Duty to God award, Dan Bunker submitting his missionary papers, and the Stewart Family.

26 April 2010

Dear Dad,

I hope that jury duty will be more exciting this time around. I actually don't think that I would like to do that very much, too much could hang in the balance and I wouldn't want to have to make that decision. Good luck to you.

That Young Men's presidency will do awesome.

I'll have to write Mike and congratulate him on earning his Duty to God. His birthday is actually on transfers, about a week and a half away.

I can't wait to hear where Dan is called to serve. That makes me so happy to see that he has stayed worthy and has the desire to serve. He will be a great missionary.

The Stewarts are great people. I have many great memories of them. Especially when President Stewart was our young men's president. I think that Sis. Stewart was in the mutual program pretty much my entire time being involved with the youth.

Not a whole lot of exciting things have happened this week, but there are a few things of note.

We took one of our investigators to the visitor's center last Monday night and watched the Joseph Smith movie. It was very powerful. He definitely felt the Spirit there. He has family that was baptized a few months ago. Elder Lacey told me that the first time they met him he basically told them to get off his porch because we are a cult! Now he goes to church every week. He told us after the movie on the way home the he ordered a quad and is having his name put on it. He also said that he recently considers his religion to be "Mormon." When we meet with him tonight we are going to ask him to be baptized. I have no idea what he will say. I guess we will find out.

There is a part-member family that we have been teaching. Their two daughters committed to be baptized later in May.

It can be kind of mind-boggling sometimes. This family (like others I have met) all know the gospel very well, and seem to have testimonies. But when it comes to staying active it is hard. So then their kids don't get baptized when they turn 8 so we come in and teach. We get them coming to church in hopes that they will stay active, or that in the future they can have a place to go. The father isn't a member, and he doesn't say much, but as far as we can tell he doesn't have a problem with anything we teach. He even said a prayer yesterday at the end of the lesson.

One of our other investigators is on the edge of dropping us. She is a good lady. She told us she isn't sure she will continue to go to the LDS Church. She is going to a different church each week. She said she just doesn't think the Church is what she is looking for. So we hope we can get her to realize it is not about what we want, or what we think is fun, or what the spirit is. But we should look for Christ's church and the Spirit as described in the Bible and Book of Mormon.
I hope that things will continue to progress here.

I will also continue to pray for the family and for Grandma Call.

Keep me updated please. Thanks.

Elder Call

Friday, April 23, 2010

Physically Demanding Weekend; News from Ammon West Stake

19 April 2010

Dear Family:

This week has been pretty good. We had a crazy weekend, though.

Friday night we took a nonmember family to the Idaho Falls Visitor's Center. We went in to see the Joseph Smith movie, and even now they still have one or two boxes of tissues on every row. The family looked kind of confused about that. But during the movie, the mother started crying when Alvin Smith was dying. She would cry periodically throughout the rest of the movie.

At the end she could hardly say anything. She was so choked up. Then she said, "Now I know why they have so many boxes of tissues here!"

Then on Friday night we went on exchanges in the Central stake with Elder Potts. On Saturday morning at 8 o'clock all four of us helped a nonmember family move to the South stake, That took until noon. (On Friday morning we had helped another family move, too."

Then on Saturday afternoon we helped one of the ward mission leaders in the Central stake do yardwork. Again, that was all four of us. Then we went to a dinner appointment. Just as we were walking out of the dinner appointment, the ward mission leader called and said his basement had flooded! He needed our help. We arrived at about 6:30. Every room in the basement had some sort of water damage. As we walked on the carpet, the water would just squirt. He had a ton of stuff down there. It took us until 1:00 a.m. to finish the night's work! Then we didn't get home until 1:15 or 1:20 or so. We didn't get to bed until closer to 2:00 a.m., and we had to get up at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday. It was the longest, most physically demanding weekend of my mission so far.

Sunday we were absolutely exhausted. But it was a very good day! The family that went to the Visitors Center with us came to church! We think they even bought their young boy some Sunday clothes. They had expressed some concerns about being accepted, but at church several people came up to them and introduced themselves, and the family was very excited. Then, after sacrement meeting, two or three boys came up to their son and asked him to go to class with them. That made the parents so happy. Then other people came up and helped the parents feel comfortable at Sunday school.

That ward had a girl speak who is going on a mission to Hungary, so there were a lot of people there from different parts of town, including one family from the Ammon West Stake. They had helped us reactivate a family. They told me that that family had just gone to the temple on Saturday! That makes me so happy to hear all that.

Thank you again for all of your letters and support.

Elder Call

Monday, April 19, 2010

Expressions of Love for Grandmother; Thoughts on Family History

Note: In my weekly email to Elder Call, I informed him that his Grandmother Call has been diagnosed with cancer and will be undergoing chemotherapy beginning this month. I also shared with him the progress I've made on my life history—it's now up to 165 pages.

19 April 2010

Dear Dad,

I know that the Brumbles will do a great job on Easter Island. I hope that Jared will be prepared to serve a mission, he would be a great missionary also. Have you heard any news about Dan Bunker. I haven't heard from him for a few weeks and I think he said he was going to come home and submit his papers from Beloit Ward, is that still the plan?

That is absolutely astounding that you have written so much about your life history! I can't tell you how much our family is going to love that. Just think if your dad or grandparents had a life history that long. Do you know if your parents have written a life history, journal, etc? Rebecca mailed me some copies of things from the Call Connection that they wrote about their early life. They were fascinating to read. Also, consider if Omer or Cyril wrote life histories. As far as I can tell they didn't, but their children and gandchildren wrote some life sketches of them.

Thank you for telling me about Grandma Call. That is very sad. I hope that she does alright. I will keep her in my prayers. Tell her that I love her and am proud that she is my grandmother.

On my mission so far I have met several people who have been close to passing on. I was asked to give a blessing to one man that was near death. We tracted into him and his family. Apparently he had been lingering on for an extended period of time, just hanging on, though he was hardly coherent. There were probably 15 family members or so in the room. One son said that a blessing of release might be necessary. He passed away a few days later. However, the peace that was in the home was strong. A family with knowledge of life here and in the hereafter. The Holy Spirit was extending his sacred calling of comfort that visibly affected the family. I am grateful for that.

Spring has finally hit Idaho for good I think. That is a blessing! It has fluctuated for the last several weeks.

Thank you for the email.

Elder Call

Monday, April 5, 2010

Expecting Miracles in Idaho Falls South Stake

5 April 2010

Dear Dad,

Things are great here in IF South. My new companion is Elder Lacey from Iowa. He has been out 9 months and is doing a good job. We cover 7 wards and a singles branch.

They are:
Sunnyside Ward
Shadow Mountain Ward
Cedar Ridge Ward
Summerfield Ward
Shamrock Park Ward
Home Ranch Ward
Park View Ward
Community Park Branch (Singles)

We are going to see miracles here in the next few weeks.

The President of the singles branch is President Kevin Call. Owner of Farr's Candy and Ice Cream. He comes from the Star Valley Branch of the family. He is pretty nice and everybody in Idaho Falls seems to love him.

General Conference was very good. Our zone watched it at the IF Stake Center on 1st street.

It was spring break here this past week and the week before it was getting pretty warm, but it tricked us and we had a few flurries of snow. We are supposed to be able to take our suit coats off at the end of April Conference, and we have, but it has been in the 30's which isn't very warm.

I wish that I could be doing family history research right now! Outside of family and friends that is probably what I miss the most. It was kind of funny--we went to a man's house the other day and he told me that when he first saw me he thought, "He looks familiar. I should know him." It turns out he spent a while in Rigby and knew a bunch of Calls there. He said we all look similar.

I had one family in Pocatello we were eating with kept looking at me kind of funny, especially looking at my eyes, and asked if I had family in Bancroft (just outside of our mission--that is where a lot of the Chesterfield Calls went when Chesterfield became a ghost town). They told me that my eyes looked just like the eyes of some Calls they grew up with over there.

I hope that work will provide itself for you and that you will be given the inspiration to know how to get new clients.

Last night we had a lesson with a couple that wants to get baptized. They pretty much told us that the first time we met them. It was our first lesson last night. We had a brother from the ward with us. We had plans to set a baptism date for the two of them. This area just really needs a baptism date to kick-start things. We had plans to share a short, powerful first lesson (as we are instructed too) and invite them to be baptized and we both (Elder Lacey and I) felt very strongly about needing to do that. But it just didn't quite work out the way we had planned.

We ended up setting another appointment to come over on Tuesday afternoon, and we hope to set a plan for him and his wife to get baptized.

Thank you for all of your support.

Elder Call