March 16, 2015, Transfers, Daleks, Disappointment, y una smeana de espanol!

Hi mom,

This week was super fun.

We started with a lesson on Monday with S*. It was kind of a good by Elder Gonzalez lesson. During the lesson she gave Elder Gonzalez a "Transfer Journal" (that's a book that the missionaries send around the district or zone before they leave the area, or after, so that every one can write little notes about the time they had together. It's kind of like a hard copy of Facebook). He already had one, but it was funny anyway.

We then left to go to Transfer meeting so I could get my new companion and Elder Gonzalez could learn where he's going. He went to the last place he wanted to go, Santa Clarita. It's all white and completely cut off from the San Fernando Valley, so a lot of Spanish missionaries just don't want to go there. Brightside, you have the mission office and home in Santa Clarita. I'm now with Elder Joyner (pronounced "Joiner"). He's really cool. He doesn't do very much inflection with his voice, but he's fun to be around and we've been speaking pretty much all Spanish. I hope that we can keep this up. The only day this week we didn't do all Spanish was Tuesday, because I had to give him the run down of the area. He's a convert himself. He converted when he was 14, via World of Warcraft (See mom video games are productive), but he didn't get baptized until he was 18 because his parents are hard set against the church. They even tried to force feed him their doctrine and anti-Mormon garbage.

Wednesday we finally got back in touch with L* and B*. We've been trying for a while, and it was a really cool day of miracle finding. First, we had this referral that Elder Gonzalez and I received but had never been able to teach, so we just dropped by and, they were there. We taught the first lesson and the wife talks too much and the husband doesn't get the chance to say or commit, or not, to anything because she does it for him. After that, the English elders that cover our area had a referral for us we ran to. She looks freaking like a miracle find, or (in San Fernando Mission slang) SHE'S SICK. After that we had the lesson with L* and B*. We've moved them to the end of the day on Wednesdays and Thursdays because we couldn't get in touch with them. L* has a twenty-year-old son who we've been thinking of inviting to listen to us, and we finally did. He sat down and so did the cousin of L*, who's 21, and the son's girlfriend. Oh, I got your package on Wednesday after district meeting, thanks for the bands, the Dalek (how ever that's spelled), the Mike Wazowski (he is far to fun to play with) and the Thin Mints (but I did ask not to get junk food (except grandma's cookies, Malanos, Brownies, and Mint Oreos) in packages).

Thursday was Weekly Planning. We had to split it up because I'm trying to go to the libraries on Thursdays to do e-learn. While I was doing e-learn I finally got around to printing off your work outs so I can do them. I've only have the first week right now, but I'm going to get more later. We also taught L* and B* that night. We were going to finish teaching Her son and cousin, but they weren't there, so we talked about the importance of the sacrament and invited them back to church and to the temple. We're going this Saturday, and THEY CAME TO CHURCH SUNDAY!!!

Friday we went exploring a little, trying to see what areas of the area haven't been touched. We didn't get much done because Elder Joyner lost his wallet coming back from or going to (we don't quite know which) service. So we had to cancel all the cards. I also started doing the workouts. HOLY CRAP MOM, ARE YOU TRING TO KILL ME. I'M STILL SORE FROM JUST THE FIRST DAY, AND I JUST DID ARMS AND ABS TODAY. (I can barely do it once through, how pathetic). We had a dinner that night with Hermano Jerez. While there we found out that his wife isn't a member. We were planning on teaching the Restoration anyway, so we did and she knows a lot, she just hasn't received that witness (sounds like someone else I know (Hint; the name starts with an S and ends with ---- ;)))

Saturday we did some more exploring, we also tried to get in touch with some members in the new area, but that didn't work out. We taught S* a little and just discussed the whole why prophets remind us over and over again about what we already know. Elder Joyner had a lot of examples of this from the Book of Mormon, specifically The first Book of Nephi. During the prayer to end the lesson, Elder Joyner's nose started to bleed like nuts. It was super funny, but S* insisted that we stay so she could take care of him. While she was doing that I talked with R*, her neighbor, about general conference and the such and why it's important that we listen to and obey prophets. I also learned that he was married and comes from a broken family, who'd a thunk? On the way back, we ran into Hermana R*. She's the grandmother of R* (an eternal investigator for the same reason as Elder Joyner was) and a super faithful member of the ward. We stopped to talk to her, and she told us that R* had left with her daughter (Hermana R*'s) who did drugs earlier that day and wasn't home yet. We made some calls and got her help to go pick up R*.

Sunday was nice. We got there a little early and Cookie Lady (an hermana in the ward that likes to give the missionaries cookies) rewarded us with a bag of cookies. By the time of Sunday School, only S* had shown up, but by Sacrament we saw L*, B*, and (here's the miracle) R*, all there. We were super glad she was okay and that L* and B* were back in church. After Church we didn't have time to do studies, we had nothing but appointments. but nothing really came of them, most fell though and one just wasn't interested, but the ward had an activity planned to get members involved in missionary work, and Elder Joyner needed to go to Santa Clarita to get some money for food today, so we still didn't have studies. I went on splits with Hermano Jerez during this time and visited a less active family. The hermano in the family was a 70 in Salvador, so it was sad to hear that he went inactive, but it just proved to me that you need to watch your testimony or anyone (even President Monson) can go inactive. We then got back together in our companionships and went to our respective appointments. We were early to S*, so we went finding. We only talked to one man, and he really like the conspiracy theories, so it was a fun conversation. We then taught a lesson to S*. MIRACLE REPORT; PRAYER WORKS, #believeinmiracles. Gospel Principles was on the priesthood and priesthood authority. This is the big doubt that we've been fighting recently with S*, and I started praying fervently that she'd receive a witness that this was true. She started the lesson that night saying that the lesson in church was just for her. I LOVED IT. We spent the rest of the night assessing what she knew and how to help her best. I thought on Saturday night that she could use a lesson on receiving an answer, and President Uchtdorf talked about that in last General Conference, so we're doing a lesson with her tonight using that talk. Side note- this was one of my best personal studies I've had on the mission.

Answers to what's not already been answered.

I think we are experiencing the heat wave, but I don't know. All I know is it feels like the middle of June or July here and it's only March. Summer's going to kill me. That's it.


Days in Spanish; 6/7!!! and they're supper solid days.

Weight for the week; 175 (I'm blaming the thin mints, FYI I eat what was left after Thursday (three sleeves) today during studies. get rid of temptation!!!)

love for the work; off the charts.
love for my investigators; higher then that for the work (The only reason I'm not going nuts right now)
love for my family; ignoring because it distract me more then I need.


Elder Michael Blanding