Wednesday, April 28, 2010

April 28. 2010

Hey everyone!

How is it going? Things here are going great! Although not too much exciting stuff happened this week. Wednesday after we got done with p-day we stayed at the church a little while longer to help with a cub scout fitness activity. That was fun. We helped a bunch of ten year old boys to run and long jump and high jump and stuff. It was exciting. It was amazing how much energy those kids have! Then Thursday we went to Bro Lily's house again. We go there every Thursday for lunch. He is awesome. He has had missionaries over for lunch every Thursday for over twenty years and he isn't in our ward. He is in my district leaders ward. So the four of us go and every now and then the Mandarin missionaries go as well. So its pretty fun. He is hilarious and makes some pretty good food. He loves having us over because he is the only member in his family and he likes having the extra priesthood in his house. He is kind of an older guy and has some health issues. Including having cancer. So he wanted us to come back on Monday to give him a blessing because he was going into the doctor Tuesday to see if he needs kemo (or however you spell that) He had asked the doctors to try everything they could before kemo because he really didn't want to go on it because he has seen a lot of people die from being on it. So he was really scared to go to the doctor. So we went and gave him a blessing. It was awesome. There were six of us missionaries and he was so happy that we could all be there. He is a very emotional guy. I love going there and talking to him. I haven't been able to hear how things went yet but we will see this Thursday at lunch.

It started snowing this weekend. yea... bummer... so we were out walking around on Saturday and it started snowing pretty hard. And of course we weren't any where near our house so we were pretty wet after a while. Luckily, I had brought a little coat so my top half was still pretty dry. haha. But we had a really good experience that night. We had a "Reflections of Christ" fireside. It was awesome. The photographer, singer and pianist from Reflections of Christ came and it was sweet. They set up a whole bunch of pictures in the gym that you could go and walk around and listen to the music playing. That was going on pretty much all day. From one to... really late at night. haha. But then at seven they had a fireside that they put on. That was the best part I thought. All three of them were there and they gave really good talks and in between them they performed some of their songs. It was awesome. They were all really good speakers, especially Mark Mabry the photographer. I loved his talk. I wish I could give good talks... and the music was amazing as well. I loved it. It made me so happy to be there and to be here on my mission testifying of Christ to everyone. I wish we could have things like that more often! But there weren't too many people there which was kind of sad. It was because it was snowing so hard outside. It wasn't too bad when we went because we went a little earlier then seven but on the way back it was pretty bad. It was kind of fun to drive in actually. Especially because the people we were getting a ride from were listening to this banjo music the whole way. And the windshield wipers stopped working for a while and then when they started working again one of the almost fell off. It made for a fun ride home! haha

That was pretty much the highlight of my week... not much else happened. We taught some lessons and walked around a lot and rode our bikes a lot. Which kind of sucks because our area is basically just one big hill. My legs have been hurting all week! And it doesn't help that is snowed this weekend. And it snowed last night too. And it is still snowing pretty good outside. But luckily we get the car back today for the week. We won't have to walk around in this weather! Other than that not much happened. Our district had a tie trade on Monday. That was fun. I got some pretty sweet ties including an awesome clip-on one! haha. Oh and last night we had Haitian food for dinner. We have like three or four families from Haiti in our ward and they like making us eat weird food. So last night we walk in and this guy brings out a plate of fish... WHOLE fish. there were 8 of them... staring at me... and then he brought out a bunch of other food that looked weird but not too bad and then he brought out this bowl of sauce with another fish staring out of it. I was kind of freaking me out at this time. haha. But once I started eating it was delicious! Kind of messy but delicious! Probably one of the weirdest but best meals I have had on my mission. Anyway, that was exciting. It made me wish I was on a mission in Haiti. haha

Well, that is it from me for this week. I hope you are all doing great! Have fun and I can't wait to tell you about this upcoming week. Next week I get to tell you if I am transferred as well. I don't think I'm going anywhere, but we will see! I love you guys!

Elder Townsend

There is Brother Lilly back in the back
We found this in someone's front yard! haha
Well at least someone in Canada cares about us! haha

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

April 21, 2010

Hey everyone! How is it going? I hope this week was good for you guys! It was pretty darn good for me! It started out being pretty good on Friday night when we had the baptismal interview for Heather. That was awesome. Apparently it went really well. It went for 40 minutes because she likes to talk. So the rest of us helped people set up tables in the gym while the district leader was interviewing her. Anyway. Elder Riggs, my district leader, said it went really well so that was good!

Then Saturday came around. That was a really fun day. We got a free pancake breakfast because the stake had one for the primary kids who got their family to come to church ten minutes early for four weeks straight. It was called "Miller standard time" because our stake president is President Miller. Catchy eh? "Miller standard time" instead of "Mormon standard time"? They were pretty impressed with themselves. haha. Anyway. That was awesome and we got invited because those were the tables we helped set up the night before. Then after that we went to the stake clothing give away because they wanted us to help put all the leftovers on the truck to take to DI, or whatever they call it here. So that was fun. And I got a really cool looking suit out of it. It is a little big though... kind of sad... but not too bad. Anyway, Then we went and ate lunch and then headed over to the church so that we could fill up the font. That was kind of fun, but I have to admit kind of boring. We were there for three hours and we had to be there the whole time because we had to turn it off after twenty minutes and then turn it back on after twenty minutes so that the hot water tank could refill itself. But it was kind of fun. We took Jenga. haha. Then at three Heather showed up and she went and got dressed and then looked at the program and told us we spelled her name wrong... her middle name is Dianne but it said Dianna... darn Elder Bleazard... that was the only thing he was in charge of! haha. Anyway, other then that the baptism went really well. well... as well as it could of gone with a lady that was deathly afraid of water... ya... that was interesting. Especially when she had to do it twice! She was kind of freaking out. But it happened and she was ecstatic after it was over. It was awesome. And then she got confirmed on Sunday by a guy that was in another stake. The stake that her friend that just got baptized is in. And that went really well too. Other than the fact that he showed up to the church an hour and fifteen minutes late! When he wasn't there at the beginning we just figured we would do it when he got there. Thinking he would show up like in the middle of one of the talks... but nope. It's a good thing that the high counselor was long winded or else he would have missed sacrament all together! Anyway, that was kind of stressful. But it happened and it worked out and she was happy. So that is all that matters.

Then I was in charge of teaching Sunday school and I asked them how they knew there was a God. Just from experiences they have had in their life. Heather started talking about all these things that happened at her baptism like she saw a light when she was under water (both times) and how she felt ten pounds lighter afterwards and how she felt so happy and warm when she was getting confirmed. Basically everything you want to hear from an investigator that just got baptized. haha. Anyway, that was just an awesome experience for me.

Then Monday we had zone conference. That was a good one. And it was exciting because we had it over in the east zone, so I got to go to a part of the mission that I hadn't been to before. Then yesterday we had district meetings. Those were good too. I have a pretty awesome district. All except my companion really... just my luck. haha. But then last night we had an lesson with Sam, our Asian investigator. That was awesome. He fed us a bunch of Chinese food, which was amazing! (which made two dinners that night... I almost died!) And then he told us that he didn't want a lesson he just wanted to talk to us. So we sat and talked for about an hour. But that hour was probably one of the best lessons that wasn't a lesson that I have had! We started talking about the Book of Mormon and how the only thing holding him back was the golden plates and everything that goes along with them. Like how Joseph Smith got them. and where they are now. That kind of stuff. Anyway, it was a really good lesson! Even though it wasn't a lesson according to Sam. He is an amazing guy. He is definitely going to be baptized. It might take another year or something but he will be. Hopefully it won't take that long though.

Anyway, that was pretty much my week. Not bad eh? Not bad at all....Well, I hope you all have an amazing week!

Elder Townsend

Heather, Andy (her husband), me, Elder Bleazard

We found these couches in front of these apartments. We almost took them home, but our house is tiny!

meals of a missionary...

1) breakfast: eggs, ham, parmesean cheese, cheddar cheese, and salsa on toast. with some milk
2) lunch: a whole box of macaroni and cheese (or kraft dinner if you are Canadian) and water3) dinner: steak (Alberta beef. apparently the best beef in the world) and potatoes.That's why I gain a bunch of weight. I haven't eaten this much in my life. Ever!

Friday, April 16, 2010

April 14, 2010

Hey everyone! How is it going? I hope you guys all had an awesome week! I hear my sisters all went home. That is exciting. I didn't feel too left out though because the husbands all stayed home. Although that was probably pretty exciting for them. All their kids left. haha. Anyway, I hope you guys all had an awesome week!

My week was alright. I am still trying to get used to this new area. I still don't really know my way around too well and I am still trying to get to know the people here. It doesn't help that we were walking this week because we can't get too far from our house and meet people and then make it to our appointments in time. But hopefully it is helping me lose some weight. Although we do get fed really well here. It is kind of amazing. We have a lady named Sis Colbe and she is in charge of our dinner calendar. She makes absolutely sure that we have a dinner every night and the ward is pretty good at it too. It isn't really that big of a ward but people still have to sign up like a month and a half in advance in order to have us over. We will usually get some sort of food from the members we teach throughout the day too so, I eat a lot, haha.

Anyway, this week was alright. Neither of us really know the area at all. So we were just stopping by random people which wasn't working out too well because we have a lot of less active people in our ward so a lot of people didn't want to talk to us. Sunday after church we met with our bishop and we went through the whole ward list and talked about everyone in it and how he thinks we could best help people and which people we probably shouldn't stop by. So that was exciting. I think that is going to help us out a lot. The last two days have been pretty good for us as well. Monday and Tuesday is usually our busiest time here. That's when people will usually have us over to teach them. So we actually had more lessons these last two days then we did all last week. Which isn't really saying all that much but it was pretty exciting. We met with Heather again on Monday and Tuesday. That was awesome. The only bad part is it takes an hour to walk there and it really is uphill both ways! She lives on the other side of a big ravine. Anyway, the lessons went really well. She is doing amazing! She is basically the most golden investigator I might ever get on my mission. She is being baptized on Saturday at 3:30. I am baptizing her. She didn't really chose me though. She didn't care who did it so Bleazard told me that I was going to do it and he assigned two other missionaries the talks and she chose a guy from the east stake, where her friend lives, to confirm her. I got the feeling that he was just trying to get out of doing anything on Saturday... which was really weird, but that is fine with me. I am more then happy to baptize her. I am excited for Saturday. it is going to be a great day for her!

Also, Tuesday night we went to Sam's house. He is amazing. He has basically been taught everything that he can be taught but still doesn't want to be baptized. He was actually really open with us yesterday though. We went over the 17 points of the true church because he had asked me and Elder Winder a question about why if we were all Christian there needed to only be one church. So Elder Winder had been working on that for a couple of weeks even before I got here so he had this big answer for him, but he left before he had the chance to give it to him so Winder just told me to go over the 17 points. It wasn't as good of an answer as Winder had but Sam still really enjoyed it. I think it really helped him and he told us that it really helped him like the church more. But after that he told us that it isn't the beliefs of the church that is worrying him. He believes everything we say and knows that it is all true. But he just doesn't want to be baptized again he feels like he is betraying his first baptism when he was a baby. He said he has had missionaries explain that he wouldn't be doing that at all, but he still feels like his is... so I don't really know what to do with that. But, he did agree to reading the book of Mormon. Which is a pretty big step. He has been taking discussions for nine months or so and still hasn't done any reading. So that will be awesome to talk about next week. (we meet with him every Tuesday) Next week will be sweet because he is also going to feed us Chinese food! Apparently he does that every now and then. I am pretty excited for it. He doesn't make it himself but Elder Winder says it is amazing. And so do the Wodruffs because he sends all of the leftovers home with us. So that will be pretty exciting. I am looking forward to that.

Other than that, this week was alright. I am still trying to get along with my new companion. It's been pretty hard for some reason. I don't really know why. He just has some things that bug me a bit and he eats a lot. (and I mean a lot) I bought a gallon of milk because we were going to trade off buying one every week and it was gone by Friday. We had two and a half loafs of bread and some hotdog buns last week that are now gone. I think I'm going to have to start buying my own food and telling him he can't eat it. He has this weird thing that he does with his neck when he cracks it. He like flings his head around and it kind of looks like he has a really big twitch and he does it all the time. I don't know. Maybe I'm just being too judgmental. But I think after having Elder Glick who was just weird and then having Elder Winder who was awesome for a week and a half. I think I just got used to the idea of having a good companion and that idea kind of got smashed into pieces.

Anyway, I'll work on that I promise. But that is pretty much it from me. I hope you guys have an awesome week! I love you guys!

Elder Townsend

so... i didnt take too many pictures this week... nothing too exciting happened to take pictures of... bummer eh?

this is me walking across the bridge over the Bow River between our house and Bowness. Bowness is part of our area that used to be a city of its own until Calgary grew to it and then engulfed it. Calgary has done that to a lot of little cities. People here call Bowness the "ghetto"... but i don't think people in Canada know what that word means. Sure it isn't the nicest place ever but it isn't bad. Oh also, it is snowing in this picture! Yes it is the middle of April and it has been snowing the last two or three days... haha
This is just the only other picture I took... I don't even remember why I took it... it is just four little bunnies filled with caramel. They were delicious. I want some more...

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

April 7, 2010

Hey everyone! How is it going? I hope you all had a good week. I have had one very crazy one! Probably the most intense of my mission so far. So last Monday we had interviews with President which was good. But Elder Winder took pretty long in his and then afterwards he told me why. He had some things from back home that he had to go back home for. So President told him that he would call him and let him know what was going on. So then Tuesday he was pretty nervous about it and then Pday took his mind off of it for a while but then Wednesday night Pres told him that we needed to come into the mission home the next night so he could talk to him.

So then on Thursday I met Mitch, one of our investigators, and talked to him for a while. Then we had dinner and a lesson with an older couple in our ward. They are awesome. They were a lot of fun and really funny. Then after we got done there we drove to the mission home which is like half an hour away. Then Winder went in to talk with President and me and Sister Archibald talked about random stuff. He was in there for over an hour. Then when he came out he told me that he was going to be flying home on Saturday morning at 5 o'clock. Taht was a bummer. And this whole time was just sad. We knew he was going to go home and I don't like when things like that happen because I don't know what to say to people to try to make them feel better. I wish I was better at that. Anyway, then Friday we went around and said goodbye to people and then we ate dinner with Elder Riggs and Fowler at Wendys. That was fun. Then we went back to the mission home where we said our goodbyes to each other. That wasn't too fun. I know I was only with him for a week and a half but I think he was the best friend that I have made on my mission so far. But he has the chance to come back in six months so hopefully he does. Or else I am going to kill him! haha. Hopefully I will get to serve around him again. That would be sweet!

But I left him at the mission home and then I went with the AP's and stayed the night with them at their house. That was weird. I had to sit in on their planning and stuff and I felt like if I did anything wrong at all then they would eat me. haha. Anyway, it was a very weird night and morning. Especilly when they got up and then slept on the couch for their exercise. haha. Then at 9:30 I went and met my new companion Elder Bleazard. He seems like a nice guy and works hard. There are some things about him that remind me of Elder Glick at times so that is kind of unfortunate. So this week has been kind of sad because I've started to realize that this transfer isn't going to be as good as it was looking like it was going to be.

Although we are going to have a pretty good transfer still it seems. We just met with the referral that we got from Elders in the east. We met with her yesterday and talked with her for a while and gave her the first lesson and then asked her if she would be baptized and she said, "yes!" So that was awesome! We set a goal for the 17th so hopefully we can make that happen. I am excited to work with her and see her progress in the gospel just like I saw with Jeanette. She is pretty solid though. She sat in on some lessons when her friend was taking the discussions in the east zone and her friend just got baptized and she decided that she wanted to learn more so that is when we started to talk to her. I am excited for that. We will see how this transfer goes with this companion and the Bishop who I hear likes to get frustrated with missionaries. Anyway, I'll keep you guys updated on all of that. I can't wait to talk to you guys next week! I love you all!

Elder Townsend

Me, Riggs, Fowler, Winder
Canada Olympic Park
Our pad
Look at that sexy beast! ha ha! The best companion ever!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

letter from Woodruff's

Hi all,

We have a new missionary in our home, Elder Townsend from Arizona.

A few minutes ago I heard Elder Townsend playing the piano and then realized Elder Winder was right there encouraging and prompting him. What a nice sight, one Elder being taught by another and what a good spirit these two elders bring into our home -- besides the beautiful music. I grabbed my camera and thought you might like a copy.

Take care,
Ann & Wilford Woodruff

March 31, 2010

Hey Everyone!

How is it going? I hope this week went as well for you as it did for me. This week was awesome! I have had a lot of fun. I got to my new area, Rockyview, and it is a lot of fun. It is on the very northwestern part of Calgary, so the exact opposite side of the city from Chaparral. I can see COP from our kitchen window. It looks pretty cool. It makes me wish I could snowboard, but I guess that wouldn't really matter since we can't snowboard on a mission anyway. haha. But I am still enjoying this area. It is a lot bigger then my last area, and it is a walking area. So that isn't as fun. Maybe that means I'll lose some weight though. That could be good eh? haha.

The Ward is pretty small and it is a lot older then my last Ward. It is a little bit more quiet in Sacrament meeting which is fun, but there were only 7 or 8 of us in Elders Quorum, which was kind of weird. They all seem like a lot of fun though. I haven't had the opportunity to meet too many members yet, but they all seem nice. I haven't met the Bishop yet. He is in Mexico for the next two weeks so I guess I won't know what he is like for a while... We don't have too many investigators here. We only really have two. And I have only met one of them so far. One is named Mitch and the missionaries have been working with him for a while, but he won't keep any commitments that they leave him so he isn't getting very far. And he smokes a lot apparently. He's the one I haven't met yet though. The appointment we had with him he canceled, so that was sad. I did get the chance to meet Sam though. He is our other investigator. He has also been being taught for a while, like nine months. He also smokes but he is keeping more commitments. He has already gave up coffee which is awesome. I am excited to work with him and see how I can help him and see how he can progress while I am here.

My companion is awesome as well. He is a lot of fun. He knows how to work hard but he also knows how to make it fun which is a good change. He is from Hurricane Utah, which means that so far all of my companions have been form Utah... weird. He is a lot of fun to be around though. We get along really well and we have a lot of fun together. And he is an awesome missionary. He teaches really well and he brings a really good Spirit into the lessons. I hope that I can continue to have a good experience with him for a while. I have learned that a good companion can make an area great. I'm not in the best area right now, but I am still having fun. He is having some foot problems though. He has falling arches, so we had to go back down south for a doctors appointment for him. We actually went back down to my old zone which was kind of fun. Anyway, maybe that means that they will give us a car. That could be good. Because it takes us an hour to walk across our area, which isn't good for trying to get in as many appointments as we can in a day. Anyway, I think that's just high hopes. Walking will be good for me.

Well, that is pretty much it for me this week. I don't really have all that much to tell you about members yet because I haven't met many of them. But hopefully that will change next week. Although I guess I can tell you a little about the people we live with, the Woodruff's. They are a lot of fun. They have a lot of rules which were interesting, but despite those they are still a lot of fun. They are really nice to us and are fun to talk to. But other then that, that is pretty much it from me this week. I can't wait to talk to you guys again next week! I hope all is going well with you!

Elder Townsend