Sunday, June 26, 2016

Week 99

Enjoying the View!
  I hope that y'all had a wonderful week last week!  Since Wednesday we were able to get a lot done in Danville and we had to stay in the pueblito all week because we were on Bike week.  Two days were crazy hot last week, we were soaking wet as we were riding our bikes haha.  But luckily it has cooled down and we are going hiking today for the 3rd week straight!  
Grocery Carrier
  We have continued teaching Efren this week and were able to have several appointments with him.  One day we walked in and when we sat down he was excited because he had read the chapter we had left him.  Whenever we teach him he always asks "is there anything else you want to share" and he is just soaking the gospel in.  We were able to set a baptismal date with him and he is going to be praying about it as well.  We asked him to pray about the Book of Mormon and he told us that he already knew it was true!  So he is pretty awesome and he should be coming to church this upcoming week. 
  We also have been teaching Billy pretty consistently and have started to teach way more simple so that he could understand a lot better.  It has been helping a lot and we left him with a big print of the Book of Mormon and he was excited about that.  The next appointment he had read and the next day he was able to come to church for the 2nd week straight!  He loved it and it was awesome he was able to come for Father's Day especially because some of the members knew his son that was a member there before he passed.  So Billy is looking great and we are working through a few word of wisdom problems and we are praying for him to overcome those. 
   All is well in Danville and I was able to teach a lot in Spanish last week, especially with being in town all week.  But that's about all for to this last week, and sorry for the shorter email since it's only been 4 days.  Love y'all and have a wonderful week!!  

Hiking on P-Day
Me and my companion
                                       A Menber gave us a drink she called a virgin missionary.
                                                             Orange juice and 7-Up

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Week 98
My sweet bike!
   Bless them if they have to go upstairs to do their laundry that they won't fall!  Feels like it's been forever since I have written y'all!  This last week was a good one and we were able to to get a lot done.  Back in Searcy this last Saturday  Brayden, Payton, and Hayden were all able to be baptized!!  I was so happy to hear that they were able to enter into that covenant and I heard that the program went super well, and the whole Ward was involved.  I got to talk to their mom (Cori) right after the baptism and she was really excited for them, she jokingly told me "this is all your fault" ha ha! I told her well that's a good thing!  She said she really enjoyed the service and as well that her husband and some of their other family friends were able to attend.  Before I left Searcy I had them write in my signature book and they wrote some really cool things.  Their testimonies are really strong, and they have embraced the gospel so well.  
Payton ,Hayden and Brayden's baptism!
   Back in Danville we were able to see a bunch of different people, and also it has been extremely hot.  As well we have actually been  going to this tiny town called "Ola" pretty frequently.  We have been teaching this lady named Francis and she is pretty awesome!   We taught her on Wednesday and she loved the restoration, and really wanted to come out to church.  We were able to set a baptismal date with her, and then we were  able to teach her the plan of salvation the next day which she loved.  We are going to be seeing her again this week!  My favorite quote of the week came from her when she prayed at the end of the lesson she said "Bless them if they have to go upstairs to do their laundry that they won't fall" ha ha!  We had told her that our laundry machine is upstairs. She's a very sweet older lady!  
  As well in Ola we are teaching a guy named Joe.  We have been teaching him for a while, and we always teach him outside on his porch.  One lesson we taught the Plan of Salvation and you could tell that he really opened up.  He has problems with eyes so he said he won't be able to come to church until he gets his surgery.  So the next lesson we gt back.  He asks if we want to go into this house and the first thing he said is that he wants to come to church this week.  On Sunday he was able to make it and he really enjoyed, It's amazing that time and time again the spirit can always change people and lead them to better things.  
  One day while riding our Bikes in Danville (we always ride our bikes when we are in town because it's so tiny). We went to see a guy named Efren.  Elder Claridge had met him a few weeks back.  At first he was on his phone and said that he was busy working on his car.  Then we asked him when we could share our message with him and he stopped and said "well I guess right now would be good".  We taught him the Restoration and explained the Book of Mormon.  When we gave him a Book of Mormon he was so excited about it and said he was going to read it for sure.  We then go back yesterday, and he had read everything we had left him to read and really enjoyed it!  He mentioned how much he was already learning.  We taught him the Plan of Salvation, and now we are going back to see him on Thursday.  
  We are also teaching an older fellow named Billy!  He has a baptism date, and we have consistently been seeing him a few times a week.  We had a good lesson on the Gospel of Jesus Christ last week, and we were pretty direct inviting him to church and letting him know that his ride would be there in the morning.  He said he would be ready to go in the morning.  He was ready, and he was able to make it to church and really enjoyed it.  He was fellowshipped well. Turns out his son who has now passed away used to be a member of the church and some of the member there knew him.  That was an awesome connection, the Lord works in so many ways to help people feel loved and comforted.         
                          Elder Geddes and Elder Claridge      Elder Geddes and Elder Taleni

   All is going well for us in Danville, Elder Claridge and I get along super well which is awesome.  On Monday we had a great meeting with Elder Arnold of the Seventy. It's amazing the spirit they always bring.  As well I got to say goodbye to many of my good friends for the last time, crazy to think about.  Last P-day we were able to go hiking which was a lot of fun.  And hopefully we are going to go again today.  Hope y'all have a wonderful week, love you much!
                                  Lily pad pond                                  Beautiful hike!

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Week 97
  Last transfer to Danville, AR 

  For this week it was quite the adventure with leaving Searcy and heading to Danville.  My last three days in Searcy were awesome though.  We continued seeing Monica every day and preparing her for her baptism at the end of the week.  She was loving everything and was so ready to be Baptized!  I left not Thursday and she was baptized on Saturday, and confirmed the next Sunday, I heard it went really well!!

Monica's Baptism
  As well in my last couple days there I got to say goodbye to everyone, there were so many amazing people that I had already met in my short time there.  Some of our coolest investigators (the Carpenter's fed us several times.  As well as Dee our Recent convert made us some dang good fried chicken before I left.  We also got to go over and say goodbye to the Mauldin's.  At the end of our visit with them I played the song "I am a Child of God" and we all sang it.  It was super cool and one of their friends even joined in with them.  I have been so impressed with those kids and all that they have learned..  It was sad to have to leave them but they went to Monica's Baptism, as well as church last week.  They will be getting baptized this upcoming weekend!!  

                              The Mauldin's                                   The Carpenter's
 After leaving Searcy I headed up to Conway to spend the day with the Zone leaders because we couldn't get a ride up to Danville until the next day.  It was a great day with them and we were able to teach some cool people.  They had BOM class and at the end of it an investigator and a less active walked in thinking it started at that time.  So while everyone played Volleyball Elder Crane and I were a let to teach her the restoration and she loved it!!  She accepted a baptismal date and is really excited about learning more.  It was a great lesson to me about teaching at all times, you never know when unexpected teaching opportunities will come up.  

  The next morning the office Elder came and picked me up and we headed up to Danville, which is one of the furthest west areas in the mission.  Here are some things to know about Danville:
* The town has no stop lights (neither do the 5 surrounding towns.)
* 70% of the population (2,500) are Hispanic
* 30% of the town works at a chicken factory called Wayne farms.
* I saw the entire town on my first day.  
* I ride a road bike from the 90's that has an awesome basket on the front.
* There are two fast food restaurants (Subway, Sonic).  
* The closest Walmart or Taco Bell is 20 miles away.  
* There is a mountain, or in western terms a "hill"

  If you couldn't tell by the description I am out in the Boonies!!  It is really pretty up here though, and it has been a great first week!  I have been in a trio for the last couple days with Elder 'Iongi and Elder Claridge.  My new companion is Elder Avery Claridge from Tuscon, Arizona and he is awesome!!  We already get along super well, and we are going to get a lot of work done this transfer.  We will be serving in a "Zebra" companionship.    

  They were excited that I'm serving here because I have been able to talk with a bunch of Hispanics that they haven't been able to.  On church some Spanish investigators were able to come, and I was able to translate which I love doing.  We went out to a town called "Ola" last week and we tried this lady named Velta who the Elders had found the day before.  She had talked to missionaries in the past so we started teaching her the Restoration and she loved it!!  She said living prophets made so much sense and she believed everything that we taught to be true.  If all goes well she will be baptized on my Birthday! That's the update that I have for this week!

 I love y'all lots, and wish you a happy summer week!

                         Sayng Goodbye to Sister Hugentobler     All miss my king bed!