Tuesday, June 28, 2011

June 28, 2011

Hello! How is everything going for all of you? Well, I am getting a new companion and staying in this area. My new comp is Elder Worthington. From what I know of him it should be an interesting transfer. But I am going to try my hardest to make it the best I can. This week was pretty slow for us. We actually had a pretty good number of lessons but most of them were with members. We are still trying our hardest to find some investigators to teach. We had a couple potentials we were hoping to teach but one got kicked out of his apartment for drug use and loud music and moved to the West Stake and the other ones name is Anti Tom... he's anti. So I don't think that will be working so well. haha. But the main person we are working on right now is Nicole Wilson. She is a recent convert who is going through some hard times in her life. She is slowly but surely coming back and is improving in all the best ways.

Probably the highlight of our week though is the fact that we are dying of black mold poisoning. We found a bunch of black mold under our kitchen sink. There was a leak that we called in and they fixed it but they left the cleaning to us. So we went to work with soap and bleach. I think it's pretty much all gone but I think I am definitely showing signs of breathing it in. Coughing, headaches and loss of attention span. But I called Sister Archibald about it and she said my body will just take care of it on its own. So hopefully that doesn't last too long.

Well, I don't have all that much time to write this week. There really isn't much left to write about. Thank you all for everything! I love you all so much!

Elder Townsend

Cleaning black moldCalgary

Saturday, June 25, 2011

June 20, 2011

Alright, So I am getting pretty sick of the rain. I hear other parts of the world need it, so what can I do to send it to you all? haha. I think it has rained here every day for the past three weeks. Apparently I just might never see a summer while I am in Canada. We didn't have much of one last year either. Anyway, besides all the rain, we had a pretty good week here. Nothing too exciting. We had a couple really good lessons with less active members of the ward. We had a lesson with Mathew Wishart and his mom. They are both less active. But we had a really good lesson with them and they committed to come to church on Sunday, but they didn't come. sad. But we hope to get in to their house again. They are very nice welcoming people. Then we had a lesson with Matt Haase. He was baptized last year, but he was baptized into another ward because the missionaries there didn't want to hand him off to the missionaries here, but now that he is here he doesn't have any friends so he doesn't like coming. But he is doing pretty well. He is a really fun guy, he didn't come to church either, but he comes every now and then. And we had a lesson with Nicole Wilson. She was baptized in February and has had some really big ups and downs but she is coming out of a pretty big down and actually came to church for the first time since I have been here and she brought her 12 year old sister who wants to be baptized as well. So that is pretty cool. We can't teach her though since she is 12... and she doesn't live in our zone. She is pretty sad about that. So is Nicole. But that's still pretty sweet.

On Wednesday we had a special training from president and the assistants. That was pretty cool. They talked about what they want us to do nowadays when we invite members of our ward to find someone for us to teach in seven days. We've been doing that a lot and they have changed how we do it. Now we teach a ten minute first lesson before and have the members pretend they are investigators and then ask them who the Spirit brought to their minds. It's pretty cool. So far it hasn't worked out too well. People get really distracted and off topic and it takes longer then I think most people expect to have us over. It's still pretty cool. We have had some pretty cool experiences with the seven day challenge in this ward so far. Some of the members actually do it and have some cool experiences. Nothing resulting in people we can teach though. Those will come with time and persistence.

Other than that we had a pretty slow week. Think the rain makes people go into hiding anyway. Well, I hope you have all had a great week and I hope all of you fathers had an amazing fathers day! You are all amazing and have a huge role in your families lives! Thank You to all of you!

I love you all! Thanks for everything!

Elder Townsend

Monday, June 13, 2011

June 13, 2011

Well, this week was pretty slow for us. It started out kind of fun. We went to the zoo last Pday. I've decided it wasn't worth it though. I'm not a big fan of paying $22 to walk around and look at animals. But it was OK. Then we had a couple lessons with members this week. Not too many dinners. But we were able to get a few lessons with less actives and recent converts. So that was good. We met with Chris McClure. He is a recent convert and is trying to work on getting the Melchizedek priesthood. So that's cool. The lessons with him are getting better. Less random tangents in the lesson. It doesn't help when your companion can't even keep focused ever. haha. We also met with Nicole Wilson. She is a recent convert that has been trying to decide if she is in the right church. I'm pretty sure she knows that she is but she decided that living all our commandments is just too hard. But she has been improving. Elder Hepworth is actually a really good missionary and knows his scriptures inside and out and can resolve her concerns pretty easily. It is still just up to her to decide to come back. I hope she does and I can see her progressing towards that since I have been here. So that's good. Other then those two none of the lessons were really that exciting. We are still looking for someone to teach in our area. Hopefully it happens soon.

We had a pretty exciting Sunday though. We got to church and a less active we taught, Russell, came and brought his non member roommate. That was sweet. It looked pretty funny with Russell wearing baggy shorts and a rock band t shirt and sunglasses and his roommate wearing a huge sweatshirt and a huge eyebrow piercing and a hat that said eye (showed a picture of an eye) <3 (heart) beer. It was pretty funny, but hey, it doesn't matter what you wear as long as you are there! So that was sweet! There was another non member there who "knows everything about Mormons" and has some things he doesn't believe and wasn't very interested in meeting with us at all, but he said he would probably be back to church sometime so we could say "hi" to him then. It was kind of sad that he wouldn't let us talk to him, but hey, if he's coming to church then that's awesome! The Spirit will work on him eventually.

That is pretty much our week though. Nothing too eventful. To make things all worse Elder Velinga, the car czar, called this morning and told me I got a photo cop ticket in a play ground zone. I hate play ground zones. There are little tiny signs on the side of the roads that tell you it's a play ground zone and you need to go 30kph (which is freaking slow by the way) and it is effective from 8:30am till one hour after sunset, which sucks when the sun is going down at like 10:30pm nowadays. But I was going 41 in a 30 so now I owe $60. Which really isn't that bad. So I guess that's good. Darn Canada.

Well regardless. It wasn't a horrible week. But I do hope that more exciting things happen in the upcoming week. We have a special training on Wednesday which could be fun. Well I hope all is going well for you all! I hope you all have an awesome week! Thanks for everything! I love you guys!

Elder Townsend

Are you my mother?

Missionaries are weird....Red panda.... cute....

Monday, June 6, 2011

June 6, 2011

Hey everyone! How is it going? I hope you all had a great week! Congratulations to Zac on his mission call! That's so awesome! We had a pretty good week here. Nothing too exciting. I think I might lose some weight serving here in this area. It's a diet that I call the YSA dinner calendar diet. haha. No they actually feed us pretty well here for a YSA ward. Unfortunately we still don't have any investigators. Did I tell you last week about the guy named Steven who just walked into the church while we were there last week? Then we had to pass him off to the sisters in our district because he was 31. Well they taught him on Wednesday and he's probably going to be baptized. This Wednesday, we actually went on exchanges so I wasn't here for it, but we had a lesson with this man from Africa that one of our ward missionaries asked to come listen to us, but when they went there with the member he didn't show up. There was this man from Iraq that lived in one of the wards here that came in to talk to the bishop and he brought a non member friend into the church with him. The two of them started to talk about the differences between this church and the Catholics and Elder Hepworth and Kuettel asked if they could teach him about this church and he said sure so they did. He took it really well and accepted to be baptized on the 18th! Guess what... he was like 40 so we gave him to the elders in our district... well we are still looking for the miracle that we will have that ends in US actually having a new investigator, but it will happen eventually.

The other highlight of the week would probably be from Friday. We went branding. Yes, branding again. But I have to say that this one was a little more exciting. I had told them that I had done it before and how I did it and they said that we would be doing it the more efficient and a more manly way... OK... so I get there and what we did is this. They would let a bunch of calves into a corral and then there were like thirty people there and we paired up and then one of us grabbed the back right foot of a calf and the other grabbed the head and then we dragged it into an open area of the corral and then wrestled it to the ground. yea. I wrestled a bunch of cows. It was sweet. Then the guy on the back would hold down the back legs and the guy up front would kneel on the cows neck and hold the front legs as there were a bunch of people with branding irons and vaccines and knives (for castrating and horn cutting) and we would hold the cow down until everyone had come around. It was pretty sweet. Then repeat a lot. It really was a lot of fun and a lot more efficient. We did over 300 cows in about an hour and a half. It was sweet, but then we had mud/manure/cow blood covered clothes. haha. It was pretty nasty and my legs are covered in huge bruises where I got stepped on while I was holding another cow down. It was awesome. At the end I felt like a man and I was exhausted. If anyone needs help doing that when I am back home let me know! I would love to! haha.

That was pretty much my week though. Sadly, Ii didn't get any pictures this week. I will get some of branding soon though. There was a girl there that took a bunch of pictures. That's right there were even YSA girls there! I was impressed they did it, but they loved it! Some of them took a little convincing before they would do it though. haha. Well, I hope you all have a great week this week! I hope I can do the same. Thanks for everything! I love you all!

Elder Townsend

Thursday, June 2, 2011

May 31, 2011

How is it going? That is crazy about all the tornados down there. It's hard to see all that happening, but we knew stuff like this would happen and it is great to know that we have the gospel and know that this life isn't the end. Just like Isaiah says and Nephi quotes, after all the destruction in the world his (talking about Jesus Christ) hand is stretched out still. All we have to do is turn to Him and grab His hand and He will help us. Just as Peter did when he walked on water. I hope everything works out OK for everyone.
As for me. I had a pretty good week here. We don't really have any investigators, but we are working on that. We do have a couple recent converts that we are working on. Most of them were baptized and then moved here. But it is good that we at least have them to work with. We are slowly having the area pick up. On Wednesday I went with Elders Moore and Kuettel into their area for the day and we taught a girl that was a referral from the office. Turns out she is YSA so maybe we can start teaching her. She seemed really interested and willing to learn, but whenever we asked her to do anything like read or pray or come to church she just said, I'll think about it. Which is sad. We are going to call her again this week and hopefully we can get in with her again. Then on Friday we had some baptismal interviews we went to for other missionaries in our district and during one of them we were sitting in the church and this guy walked up to the door and we let him in and talked to him and turns out he wasn't a member. He had been in the building two years ago for a funeral and he had been having a hard life this year and so he just stopped by to see if we could help him. So we talked about Jesus Christ and how He can help everyone in their lives and talked about the Book of Mormon and gave him one. He seemed really interested and such and we asked him how old he was... 31.... One year too old! ahh!!! haha. It was still a really sweet experience though. I really enjoyed it, but unfortunately we had to pass him off to the sisters.
Then on Sunday at church we had three really good talks about missionary work from converts. That was cool. Then after church we had a lesson with a recent convert who had another friend from another church over as well. Apparently she is church shopping now and wants to know which one is right for her. So Elder Hepworth really wanted to be there to talk to her other friend so he convinced her to let us over. So we came with Cody, the ward mission leader, so we could have priesthood and we talked about the different religions. I think we should have taught a first lesson really quick, but we didn't. It was still a really good meeting and I think it helped Nicole, the recent convert. But I think it could have been a little better.
That was pretty much my week here though. Thank you for everything you guys do for me! I love and miss you all! I hope you all have a safe and happy week! Thanks for everything!
Elder Townsend
The view from our balcony

This is what we are driving around in all day... I've never been in the heart of a big city like this and I have to drive because my comp was in an accident and the mission won't let him drive anymore.