Wednesday, March 30, 2011

March 30, 2011

Hello everyone! How is it going? We had a pretty good week out here in Pincher Creek. It started out pretty slow but ended on a great note! We had a pretty good day on Tuesday. We had district meetings which are always fun and awesome. Then we went out to a Chinese buffet for lunch. Then we went and had a couple lessons that night and did some service for an older guy in the ward. Then Tuesday night I was up all night feeling like I was going to vomit so in the morning I called Sis Archibald and we were pretty sure I got food poisoning from the Chinese food. So I was home sick all of Wednesday. I always feel bad doing that though because it leaves my companion home all day with nothing to do. But I couldn't help it. I would have much rather been out working. Then Thursday I was feeling a little better and we had our weekly planning so I still had a little time to recover and then we had dinner drop off food to us... guess what it was... Chinese from the same place! haha. yea... I didn't eat it. haha. But we went out and had a couple good lessons that night. Then Friday we had a special training in Lethbridge. That was fun. It meant a nice road trip out there. The special training took from 9 to noon and it was on the 7 day challenge and how we can be implementing it better into our lessons. It was interesting. It was nice to see other missionaries though because we had it with the Lethbrigde zone as well. So that was sweet. Then we went to Five Guys for lunch and then came back here and had a couple lessons here. Then Saturday was the highlight to our week. We had a lesson that night with Rob Frost at our ward mission leaders home. It had been a while since we had taught him but the last time we did he basically asked what being baptized would require so we were going to go over baptism again and then a couple of the main commandments. So we sat down and just talked to him for a while and it was Bro Dietze and Elder Brightons first time being in a lesson with him so we talked about why he started looking into the church and reading the Book of Mormon and stuff. He basically said that he was starting to realize he needed to change his life and he noticed that the church and what we were teaching were helping him change and feel the change in his life. Then we started talking about baptism and what it means and what leads up to it and such and Bro Dietze was giving a lot of really good input. He is a High School teacher and he is really good at just talking to people and helping them understand and after a while Bro Dietze was all just "well do you feel like baptism is a step you need in your life?" and Rob sat there and thought about it for a while and then just said, "yes". Yes! haha! So then we talked to him about that and we talked about the 9th of April but he was working so we went for the next week on the 16th. And he said he would prepare for that date so that is awesome! That is going to be a great day if I am still here, because its also Stake conference and Elder Scott is coming to our Stake conference! So that will be sweet. That's if I am still here. We are having transfers next week and I haven't decided if I want to stay here or not. So I guess I will leave it up to the Lord and what he thinks is best for me. So we will see what happens next week. That is pretty much it from here. Thanks for everything guys! I love you all!

Elder Townsend

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

March 22, 2011

Hey guys! How is it going? We had a pretty good week here. Slower but good. We didn't get too many lessons in. This ward is kind of off and on in letting us come into their house. We did have a dinner every night though. And we were able to get in with one less active couple. So that was good. Thursday and Friday we went up to the pass and worked up there again and spent the night up there. That was fun. We stopped by the Hall's, a less active family. They own a thrift store up there so we stopped by the store and talked to them for a while and shared a message at the end. That was good and we were able to get in with a couple of members. A couple of people had us for lunch or dinner. On Thursday night they had a branch pot luck. That was fun. It was all Mexican food and they had some games they played like "guess the Spanish word" and they had a pinata for the kids and stuff. It was actually a pretty fun night. There were a lot of people out of town so there weren't many people there. But they said it was a great turn out... I guess I just don't know how many people usually come. It looked pretty sparse to me. haha. We stopped by pretty much all the less actives and potentials we had out there and not too many were home. But it was pretty hard to stay busy out there. No wonder they don't have missionaries just out there. But I like going. It's something new and exciting to do every other week. Also a really sad thing that happened in the pass. We called Dani earlier in the week asking if we could come by and she just said, "I think I am alright for now."..... dang it. But she did still want a bible so we went and dropped that off to her on Thursday and we talked to her for a little bit on the door step and it sounds like life is just getting really busy for her. So we are going to try again and then see if we should just give her some room for a while. That was really sad though. That was pretty much the only investigator we have anymore and now she didn't want to meet with us. I hate when that happens.

Also Thursday was St Patricks Day, but you would have never guessed it up here. They still celebrate it. People recognize it. They saw me wearing my green tie and thought it was fun. But nobody really cares about it up here. There aren't any decorations in the stores. Nobody wears green. It's just weird. Darn Canadians. haha

Then Saturday we did service for a less active guy pretty much all day. We didn't think it would turn out that way, but it did. We went over thinking we were going to move furniture for him, but we built flower boxes for his mother in law. They live in a trailer park and she has a railing up to her house and we built boxes all the way along that railing. Then right when we were done it started snowing like crazy. Which was really sad because it had been getting warmer and the snow was melting and then it snowed. And it didn't stop until last night. So there is snow everywhere again! haha Then Sunday was alright. We went to church and there weren't many people there and we didn't get anyone out that we were hoping to, less active or non member. But it was still fun. I really like this ward and the Elders quorum is hilarious. I look forward to that every week. Then Monday was P day and we went and played games and basketball with the rest of the zone and we went to Raymond and some kids came out and played basketball with us as well. It was ridiculous. I haven't worked out that much in like two years! haha. And now I'm freaking sore. I could barely get out of bed this morning. It's sad really. The mission is getting me really out of shape. It's probably those twenty extra pounds that weren't there before my mission.

Anyway, that is pretty much my week here in Pincher Creek. It's really slow here and there isn't much to keep us busy, but I am trying. I really am. And even though I don't feel like I am getting much accomplished here I know that the Lord put me here for a reason and I hope to be able to find that reason before I leave. Thank you all for the support you have given me. I love you all so much.

Elder Townsend

Chinook Arch (happens when a chinook comes in)

Branch party

Festive eh?

Canadian car :)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

March 15, 2011

Hello everyone! How is it going? I hope you all had a great week. We had a pretty slow one here. It was sad. We had a couple of dinners and a couple of lessons which all went really well. We have great members here. I love this little ward and town. There just isn't anything to do missionary wise. We tried meeting with Rob Frost, but he volunteers at the fire house so he was busy all week. We didn't get a chance to find a time that worked to teach Dani. We had a lesson with a native couple we have been teaching off and on, but they canceled the morning of. Bro Yellowhorn, a less active native, hasn't been answering our calls lately. So we didn't get any lessons with non members or less actives this week. We did get the chance to do some service at the museum though. Every Wednesday morning we go and help out there. So we got there and they had us shovel snow. They didn't tell us when to stop so we just kept going. We shoveled off all the sidewalks that went around the museum. It was ridiculous. There were a whole bunch of drifts as well, huge ones and drifts suck to shovel. They get so packed down its like breaking away at ice. So we did that from 10 to around one, then took lunch and at the end of lunch got a call from Bro Mallard. He lives out in Lundbreck, a tiny town, and asked us to come help shovel at his house because he thought his house was going to flood. It has been really warm around here, which has been really nice. All the snow is melting and I don't have to wear a jacket anymore. But that means that there is water EVERYWHERE!!! So we got to his house and he has a HUGE drift covering his entire garage door and on the side of the garage is a huge drift covering almost the entire side entry door and neither are really weather proofed at all and the garage leads right to the basement so they figured if they didn't move it the basement would die! So we get there and for the rest of the day, until 6 or so, we were hacking away at this mound with pick axes and shovels and eventually got to the point where we could open all the doors. But then we had to go to dinner. That was the most exhausting day ever and it didn't seem like we got too much accomplished. We were going to go back the next day to help again, but they found someone with a bobcat to come help with the rest of it. So that was nice haha.

But the most exciting part of the week started Friday night. Friday night around 930 the missionaries from Trail BC came and spent the night with us and then at 3 in the morning we got ready and left at 430 to make it to Fort MacLeod at 515 to catch the tour bus to take us to Calgary. The mission had a bus pick everyone up from Lethbridge and Medicine Hat and then came here and picked us up and then drove to Calgary. That was fun. Things go crazy when you get a tour bus full of missionaries that haven't seen each other in a while. haha. But we got to the Sundance chapel around 700 and then we all sat down and sang until about 745 when Elder Todd Christofferson and Elder Real (pronounced ree-ahl) from the seventy came in. That was so sweet. I love apostles. They are amazing. Elder Real spoke for a little bit and then Elder Christofferson talked to us for about 2 hours. It was awesome. He was hilarious. He was real with us. He joked around and quoted a random beer commercial and when an Elder quoted him, Elder Christofferson asked Pres Archibald if he had a cookie for him. haha. He was just funny and he didn't chastise us for being horrible missionaries. He just told us some things that some missionaries forget to do and told us that we should work on it. Like planning around a commitment instead of planning a lesson and then sticking in a commitment randomly. Anyway, it was a great experience! (even though I was really tired, haha) I left feeling great and like I wanted to go out and do missionary work. Not like a lot of times when I leave meetings just feeling like a horrible missionary. It was a great feeling. Then we took the long ride back and got home around 3. So that was a pretty good day. It's never a bad day when you get to shake hands with an apostle. It's awesome.

Then Sunday we didn't get any of our investigators out to church, but I gave a talk in Sacrament meeting about the Holy Ghost. I don't know how well it went with not getting much sleep that night and then losing an hour of sleep Saturday night from daylight savings time. But people said it was good. It made sense in my mind. I talked about how the Holy Ghost helps our investigators and how the Holy Ghost can feel to people and then I talked about the blessings we can have from having the Holy Ghost in our lives, whether they be emotional, physical or spiritual. And I love that. I love the feelings of peace or happiness or joy that can come from the Holy Ghost. Our Father in heaven loves us so much and wants us to be happy. So he sends us the Holy Ghost to help us. Sure we are going to still have hard times and struggles, but that is how we learn and grow. This is when we need to turn to our Father in heaven most and look for those subtle prompting's or feelings of the Holy Ghost telling us that everything will turn out the way that we want it to. Prayer is a wonderful thing and I pray for you guys everyday. Thank you all for everything you do for me. I love you so much!

Elder Townsend

PS... I wore a different suit to district meetings today and we came straight to the library after them and I left my camera in my other suit... so no pictures today. I'm sorry. I'll send some next week I promise. :)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

March 7, 2011

Hello everyone! How is it going? We had an allright week here this week. It's been freezing! Apparently this is the coldest, snowiest, windiest winter they have had in years... yippee... there is snow everywhere. They have been working the last two days with big dump trucks and stuff to move all the giant piles of snow from the side of the roads to an empty field. (unfortunately, I don't have any pictures of that mom. So you won't get to see that). When it's this cold it's hard to find things to do as missionaries. We try to stay inside if we can. Do some service at the library or visit the older people who don't work anymore. But every now and then we are forced to be outside. But having a car isn't too bad. You can go in there and warm up for a while every now and then.

This week was pretty slow for lessons. We didn't have anyone signed up on the dinner calendar so we lost those seven lessons and a lot of people just weren't home or available. But, we were able to go out to the pass on Thursday and spend the night out there. That was good. We were able to meet with pretty much every active member out there (there isn't too many of them) and a couple of less active families as well. I found out why there is a branch out there with their own building though. Back when the mines were open there would be like 150 -200 people there every week. But then the mines closed and now there are like 20 that show up. Everyone was forced to move for a job. So that's sad. They are pretty close up there though. It's a good little branch and I enjoyed being out there. It was fun. We met new people. It was a change in pace and we were able to meet with Dani each day. That went pretty well. She seems to be coming along. Although she did tell us that she wants to look into other churches to see all of her options. I guess thats good. But it means things will probably move slower then they would otherwise.

The Crowsnest pass really is a beautiful place. It could be a place I would come back and visit. Probably more in the summer though. I bet that place looks awesome in the summer.

Then on Sunday Rob Frost came and the other Iranian lady that we have been moving a lot were there. That was cool. I don't know if I have told you about the Romanian lady. She came to church once and then we helped move all of her stuff into a trailer. She just moved from Calgary. It was a whole bunch of really expensive stuff into a tiny trailer. I think she's planning on buying a house later. But that place is packed now. And she keeps calling Bishop "pastor" and I can't help but laugh to myself every time she does. Anyway... that's pretty much my week. Nothing too exciting. Don't worry, we have a couple dinners here this week. So that's good. Elder Christofferson is coming on Saturday up in Calgary so we get to take a road trip up there. That should be cool. I am excited for that.

Thanks for everything guys! I love you! Talk to you next week!

Elder Townsend

The pass. There are like six little towns in the pass. This is one of them... it might be Coleman... I can't remember
driving through the pass.

we might have gone out of our area to take this... we aren't entirely sure... I don't think so though. haha

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

March 1, 2011

Hello everyone! How is it going? I hope all is going well for you guys. We definitely had a slower week here. We weren't able to meet with Rob Frost again and we had lessons with Danyelle last Friday, but she called us that morning and said she was too sick to have us over. We didn't get a chance to go to Bro Yellowhorn, a less active in the reserve. Those are the three people that we are really working with. So that was sad. But this week hopefully we can get in with them again. We are going to go out to the Pass on Thursday and spend the night out there and work Friday too. So hopefully we can get in with Danyelle both days and get in with some less actives and part members out there. President Archibald is kind of sceptical about that. Apparently missionaries have tried it before and didn't find much to do out there. But the high priest group leader is pretty excited for us to go and is trying to plan out both the days. So we will see how that goes. If nothing happens I don't think we'll be able to do it again. So I hope it goes well. Even if not much comes out of it though it will still be nice. Something to change up the routine a little bit. I have only been here for 8 weeks now, but I am already running out of things to do here. I don't know what I am going to do if I stay here too long.

I think the most exciting thing that happened this week is that we helped a less active older couple move across town. It was kind of fun. It was FREEZING. They started it on Friday night at six and we loaded up a little Uhaul truck and a couple of pick ups and headed over to the other house and halfway there the Uhaul breaks down... so Bishop got his half ton and towed it the rest of the way. I was actually really impressed with that little Ford F150. haha. Then when we got there we unloaded it all. It was amazing how much stuff they had in that little house. A whole bunch of furniture and a ton of boxes. It was getting really dark so we couldn't see much in the Uhaul so we got a car to shine its lights in it for us. I've never had to do that before haha. Then we went back for the last little bit of it. Just a couple more pick ups since the Uhaul was dead. And the last thing we moved in were the washer and dryer. That was exciting... I was carrying the washer in and I was the one walking backwards and on the driveway was this big snow drift I hadn't seen before.... and as my foot hit that it just slid right off of it and I went down and the dryer came on top of me... luckily, the snow absorbed most of it... I think... I don't really know what happened all I know is it didn't hurt me at all. I think it landed mostly beside me. But of course, nobody cared about the missionary on the ground they just ran to the washer and made sure I didn't break it! haha. Don't worry... I didn't.

That's pretty much our week though. Oh and we found out that Elder Christofferson (i don't know if I spelled that right...) is coming to talk to us all next Saturday. So that will be exciting. And it also means a really long, early road trip for us up to Calgary. That should be fun.

Oh, I guess I'll tell you a little about my companion, Elder Brighton. He is from Roosevelt Utah, a tiny town east of Provo. He is a nurse assistant or something. He started in high school and then went to a year of college and then did nurse stuff for a while. He came out when he was 20. He is at his year mark this up coming week. He is really good at playing the piano. He's been playing it for twelve years now. He is kind of awkward. Doesn't say too much. Tells the same stories over and over again. He really likes having everything really clean and he is the healthiest eating missionary I have ever seen. He has made homemade bread and this weird zucchini casserole and he bought a bunch of fruit and potatoes and stuff. It was ridiculous. (mom, I'm not doing that. I like making something really fast and then taking my nap for the rest of my lunch break. haha) He is a pretty good companion though. We seem to be getting along pretty well. It's kind of nice to have someone who is excited to do work here again and someone with new ideas of how to do work here. So that is good. Hopefully we can start having this area pick up more.

That's it from me this week though. Nothing too exciting. I'll let you guys know how next week goes. Thanks for everything! I love you guys!

Elder Townsend

Darn Canadians and their weird sports...

My last district. Roberts, Lafond, me, Malagamaalii (aka m), Fowler and Grace