Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 29, 2011

Hey everyone! We had a pretty good week here. It was a little slower in terms of lessons and the numbers we turned in at the end of the week but it ended pretty well. Monday we had FHE but we weren't allowed to go because they went to the temple site and that isn't in our zone. That was sad. So we spent all night dropping by less actives since the whole ward was at the temple. haha Then, Tuesday was pretty sweet. We had mission tour that happens every six months or so. Elder Baxter of the Seventy came and spoke to us. It was really good. They talked about being more consecrated to the Lord and to the work and I think that was something that was really good for the mission and they talked a lot about something else that I know was really good for the mission. They talked about personal contacting and talking to people on the street and what we should say and how we should act on the streets and stuff. It was good. That is definitely something this mission can work on. Myself included. I'm still horrible at talking to people and talking to everyone on the street. I don't really know why but, it's something I am working on. Then we had a really good dinner after the meeting. We went with this member named Jared who drives a sweet old VW beetle. He took us to this Columbian restaurant. It was actually really good. I've never had Columbian food before but that was delicious! Then Wednesday Thursday an Friday were pretty slow days. We stopped by a lot of less actives and potential investigators and former investigators and spent a lot of time walking around downtown talking to people, which I am still really bad at. It seems like all the lessons we had set up this week just kept falling through. Friday night we did meet with Robin again. That went really well. She knows this girl from another YSA ward that she went to high school with so we took her and Jeff Blackford with us to the lesson. It went really well. We talked a lot about the Holy Ghost and its roll and how it can answer your prayers and questions and we talked a lot about faith and how she needs to exercise her faith and make those steps that are by faith and she will see the blessings that come. She knows that it is all true and she knows she feels the Spirit whenever she meets with us or comes to church. She won't accept a date to be baptized though because she wants to learn more about our culture and get to know more people first. I guess we can work with that. She will get baptized. It will happen and I hope I can be here to see it happen. Then Saturday and Sunday were alright. Slower days. Saturday there was a BBQ at the church that the ESL class put on and they invited us to come along so that we could have conversations in English with the students there. That was sweet. And Sunday was cool because Robin came to church! YEA! She could only stay for Sacrament meeting but that was ok. She's solid. She really enjoyed the talks and stuff. So it was good. That was pretty much the best part of my week though.

I found out something kind of sad this week though. Do you all remember Heather Jaremko from Rockyview ward? She was someone I taught and baptized about a year and a half ago. Well, I got a call from the missionaries there and the mission office saying that she had suddenly gotten sick and was in the hospital and then passed away on Tuesday. I was shocked. It happened pretty suddenly. They think it was some kind of cancer. I was really sad when I heard about that, but then I started to think about how as missionaries we are here to teach people how they can come closer to our savior Jesus Christ in this life. We are here to warn them and to prepare them for the life to come. And I was able to help in that process with Heather. She is in a better place. I know she is and I know she is happy. I'm so glad that I am here serving a mission and helping people in any way that I can. I love my mission and I love being out here in Canada and I truly do love the people here. I cant wait to see who else I can help in the next couple of months. Heather's funeral is tomorrow and I am really hoping that I will get a chance to go to that. I would send a picture of Heather so you could see her, but I forgot my camera today... my bad. next week :)

Thank you all for everything. I love you all so much!

Elder Townsend

(link to post about Heather's baptism here)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

August 23, 2011

Hello everyone! We had a pretty good week here. We didn't get a chance to teach too many lessons but the lessons we did have were great! On Monday we went over to Jeff and Dallas' house for dinner and then went to FHE where we drew sections of pictures and then put them together to make one big one. It was interesting. I'm not very artistic at all. Good thing the rest of my group was. haha. Then Tuesday was sweet. We had district meetings and then after that we went and drove to a place called McKenzie in the south east. There is this man named Jake who has been going to the YSA ward in the south stake for a couple of weeks and the missionaries there finally set up a time to teach him but he lives in our area so we went and taught him. It went really well though. His friend Elliot was there too and he just came back into activity I think and he was a lot of help in the lesson. We taught the restoration and answered a lot of their questions. It was really cool. Jake was really willing to learn and accepted it really well. He wouldn't accept a date to get baptized though because he feels like he needs to do a lot to change his life and thinks he needs some time to do that. So we will work on that, but he is solid. He will definitely get baptized it's just a matter of time. If we could have I think we would have been able to teach him all the lessons right then. He was very interested and very into the lesson. It was sweet. We are meeting with him tomorrow again. Hopefuly that goes well. Then Wednesday was a really good day. We taught five lessons which was sweet. We went and taught Chris McClure which was interesting. It is always interesting going over there. Then Jeff called us and wanted to go out with us to some lessons so we went and picked him up and then went and taught Addison Gough. That was sweet. Addison is making a lot of really good choices in his life recently and it's cool to see. Then we went and stopped by Andrea Arellano and dropped off her pan that she gave us last Sunday with shepherds pie in it and shared a message there and then we had a really good dinner and then went and taught Robin Roberts. That went really well too. She hadn't come to church in two weeks because she was out of town but she said he would come this week but she didn't which was sad. We had a really good lesson with her. We taught lesson three which is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. She really liked it and agreed with it, but she says she is too comfortable in her lifestyle right now to make any drastic changes like coming to church, which was sad to hear. We can work with that. As long as she continues to meet with us and come to church and reads the Book of Mormon the Spirit will work on her and she will come to know that it is true and that she can be so much happier when she makes that covenant with our Heavenly Father.

Then Thursday was a lot of fun. Jon Cummings came and picked me and my companion up and took us out to lunch to this sweet place called Saltlick. It was delicious. I got this huge steak. It was ginormous and really good. Then we got this delicious cake for dessert. I was in heaven. haha. It was sweet to talk to him and hear about life back home. Then we went to a special training from the assistants and Pres Archibald. That was good. They focused on how we can teach the third lesson efficiently and make it understandable. It was actually pretty good. I learned a lot. Then we had a dinner and then a lesson with Sariah Seabourn. That went really well too. It's sweet to see the changes she is making and how she really is doing it all on her own. She knows she is happier in the church so she is doing everything she can to make it happen. It's cool to watch. Then Friday was really slow. We didn't have a lot to do so we stopped by a lot of people and not a lot of people were home. The same thing happened on Saturday. It was way too nice of a day for people to be home. They all went floating down the river instead! I wish I could do that... it sounds nice when your burning up in a suit. Then Sunday was actually really fun. We went and did some home teaching with Jeff and then we took him with us to our dinner with Lachele and Carrie. That was sweet. I gave them the funfetti cake you sent me for my birthday and they made it for me and it was delicious. They are awesome. Also Mom, they were wondering if you could send more funfetti cake because it is delicious and you can't get it here in Alberta... sad. I really enjoyed this week. We didn't have a lot to do but we made the things we did have to do a lot of fun! Thanks for everything! I love you all!

Elder Townsend

I don't know if I've sent these pictures yet or not...

The zone last transfer
Me and my A-Bomb from Tubby DogMe and my Tubby Dog shirtThis is what I got from Carrie and Lachele for my birthday! :)

Monday, August 15, 2011

August 15, 2011

Hello everyone! This week was a pretty good week I guess. I was really sad to see Elder Worthington go to Medicine Hat. I was hoping that we would stay together for another transfer. I guess the Lord knows what is best for everyone. Elder Farnsworth is good as well though. He is a great missionary and a good worker so maybe we can get some work going this transfer. This week was actually pretty slow. We didn't get a chance to get too many lessons but the lessons that we did get were awesome. Tuesday night was really just Worthington saying goodbye. It was sweet though. We had some members take us out to dinner which was awesome. I've decided though that I have spent way too much money on food already this month haha. It was sweet though and our waiter was hilarious! Then Wednesday we had to go to transfer station at 8:30 and then Elder Worthington hopped on the bus down to Medicine Hat. Then I went with Elders Moore and Hansen as I was waiting for my new companion to get up here from Vulcan. (yes that is actually a town in southern Alberta haha) We taught a couple lessons and then went back and picked up my new comp, Elder Farnsworth. Then we went and shopped for groceries and unpacked and then we had a dinner with Aaron Nelson which was him just dropping off a huge sub from Safeway. It was funny, but it was actually pretty good. Then Thursday was kind of exciting. We had weekly planning which is always freaking long and I had to explain the whole area to Elder Farnsworth as well as I could, which I am really bad at and I don't really like doing. I think it went well. Then we had a dinner and then a lesson with a less active girl. She's sweet. She made the choice to come back all on her own. We didn't even have her records here. She wants to change and is making some really good progress in her life, which is awesome to watch. We will be meeting with her this week as well. Her name is Sarah Seaborn. She's sweet. Then Friday Saturday and Sunday we had a couple lessons as well, nothing too exciting though. Just with some sweet members. Sunday was sweet because a member named Spencer Wenzel brought a non member friend to church and then after church we went and had lunch with both of them and talked to the friend for a while. His name is Dante. He's hilarious and he did accept to hear the lessons so we set up a time to teach him this week. We are going to teach him during Sunday school next Sunday. Which is better then nothing! Then we had a dinner dropped off to us and it was this huge thing of shepherds pie and a freaking delicious chocolate cake. It was soooo good. Andrea Arellano made it and she made it for my birthday so she even had a sweet candle to put on it. haha. It was a lot of food though so we took it over to Jeff Blackford's house and shared it with him. He's freaking hilarious and is a huge help to us when we need Priesthood for lessons or dinners. So we thought we would pay him back a little bit. OK, so, Saturday was my birthday and it was the best birthday ever! It was sweet. We had a meeting with our zone leaders in the morning and then we went to tubby dog for lunch. It's this gourmet hot dog place that is freaking delicious and has some crazy hotdogs. It's freaking good though. Then the other missionaries, Moore and Hansen, told us to come to their house and they had decorated their apartment and we had a big surprise birthday party!! OK... so it wasn't that big... we are missionaries. It was awesome though. Then they drew all over our car while we were there too. It was funny. Those two are funny. Then we didn't have all that much to do until Jeff Blackford took us out to dinner to Five Guys. That was freaking delicious! I love Jeff and then he bought me a tie for my birthday as well. He is the man. Then we went and had a lesson with Lachele Wickens and Carrie Pickering and it actually ended up being at Dairy Queen so we could party for my birthday haha. and when I got there they had a bunch of presents for me as well. It was freaking awesome. They had a wicked sweet birthday card for me that they personalized and everything. It was hilarious. It was sweet. though. I freaking loved my birthday! People were way too nice to me but I guess I can't complain. And I got to spend the evening with my favorite guy in the ward Jeff and my two besties Lachele and Carrie. haha. Thank you all for the love and support and the birthday wishes! I love you all!

Elder Townsend

Tubby Dog. 1/3lb dog with pb&j and captain crunch on it "the captains dog" (freaking delicious by the way) and freaking huge onion rings
Happy birthday to me! :)

Our car

Nobody honked.... I was sad

Birthday cake from Andrea :)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

August 9, 2011

Hello everyone! it's transfers! And to my surprise I am staying here. I was pretty darn sure that I was leaving. That means that I might actually end my mission in this area. The sad part is that my companion Elder Worthington is leaving. When he was getting transferred here I never thought I would be sad to see him go, but we have had a lot of fun together and have actually gotten along really well. It is sad that he is leaving but, he got called up to be a zone leader, so good for him. It means that I am getting a new companion. This one is Elder Farnsworth. I might have talked about him a little bit before. He was my district leader for my last transfer in Pincher Creek. I am excited for him to come. It should be fun. I am curious to see if he drives me crazy but, then again, that's what I thought about Elder Worthington too and he turned out being one of my favorite companions and we actually had a lot of fun together. So I'm just going to go into it with a positive mind. so we will see what all happens. It will be interesting to see if I end my mission here or end in a one transfer area. Anyway... don't need to be thinking about that. I still have a lot of time to do a lot of good.

Anyway. I hope you all had a great week! I did. I had a blast. We had a chance to have a couple of really good lessons with members and less actives. We got a couple of referrals that we are hoping we can start teaching soon. It wasn't a very good week for losing things though. I lost my planner and I forgot my camera at a member's house so I won't be able to send pictures home today... sad. We had a lot of really good lessons. This ward is awesome. I love it. It has had some interesting missionaries in the past and they were kind of done with missionaries when I came in but me and Elder Worthington worked our tails off to change that and it has really worked well. This ward is awesome and a lot of them are actually letting us come over and teach them and help them in their missionary work. It's really cool to watch a ward progress like that. It is also really satisfying to watch. Sadly we don't have too many investigators to teach, but we are working on that. The one that we do have, Robin Roberts, went out of town last Wednesday and won't be back till later this week. We were supposed to meet with her on Tuesday, but she said she had to pack and was too busy. So we are hoping to meet with her this week when she returns. The work here is really progressing and I hope it continues. The thing I am not looking forward to is having to tell Elder Farnsworth all about this area. It's probably the least favorite part pf my mission. haha. It will be good though. I will let you all know how this next week goes. Thank you all for everything! I love you all so much!

Elder Townsend

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

August 2, 2011

Hello everyone! How is it going? I had a pretty good week here and I hope you all had a great one as well. This week was kind of a slower one, but we had some really good lessons. We were able to teach Robin Roberts twice and she came to church! It was awesome! I haven't had an investigator come to church in so long I almost forgot what it feels like! It was great. The ward was actually really good at friend shipping her. She felt really welcome and our Relief Society Pres Holly Spackman did a great job and took her to class and to the third hour. It was kind of an interesting Sunday for her to come. It was a lot about missionary work. We had a missionary farewell and the 5th Sunday lesson was on missionary work as well and they had us talk about finding and how members could help us... it's just not really the best topic that we could have had for an investigators first time to church. But I think she still liked it and she liked knowing a little more about what we are doing out here and that we are here to help her. It was cool. We taught her the plan of salvation and read Alma 32 with her for the lesson and that went really well. She really feels the Spirit and knows that she does and she even said that she knew baptism was a beautiful thing and that it was something that she wanted. I think she doesn't know if she wants to make these changes in her life because of what other people will think about her. Every time we meet with her she tells us stories and how she is surprised by how much people don't like us and think we are all weird. So that's kind of sad but, it is something that is very easily overcome. So, I think she is going to be baptized really soon. It would be really sad if I got transferred away from this area next week and couldn't watch it happen.

Other than that we had an alright week. Elder Worthington had to go to what they call leadership training meetings on Wednesday from 9-6 so I went with the family ward missionaries into their area for the day and then on Friday we were supposed to go on exchanges with the zone leaders but one of them got called up to be trained to be our next assistant to the president so we only have one zone leader so me and Elder Worthington just went with him into his area which was sad because we had to cancel some appointments with people in our area. So we didn't have the most effective week in our area and we didn't get as much done as we would have liked, but it was still a really good week and we had a lot of fun. I am looking forward to this week. It should be a lot of fun. Although I am a little nervous about transfers. Mostly because I have no idea what will happen to me. I would be really sad to leave but then again I would just go to a new area and find cool members and work to do there so I guess it's just whatever the Lord wants for me! So I will let you all know on Tuesday where I am going or if I am staying! I hope you all have a great week! Thanks for everything! I love you all!

Elder Townsend

We didnt take any pictures this week and I dont know what all I have sent home.. so here are a couple random pictures enjoy! :)

Me playing chess with an old guy

Gorilla..... I dont know why I actually sent this one... I just thought you would enjoy it.Elder Moore.... isnt he beautiful? ladies... he is single haha