Monday, November 25, 2013

Week 16!

I am having such a hard time believing that it has already been 16 weeks. Or 4 months since I have been out. Time is just flying by! It is crazy. So this past week we were still really slow. We have been struggling in this area. And it isn't that there isn't any work to be done. It is just the people who are not members or not active are just hardened. It is crazy. So we have been trying to working more with less actives. And we talked to our mission president and he said to start teaching lessons to the members. Because other then them we have zero investigators. It is hard being in this area. I am doing ok overall. But I just don't know what is going to happen to this area. The missionaries that had been here before us had also been struggling. I kinda think this might be a last push for this area before they consider just closing it down for the winter. There is a lot more work in the summer. So we are just trying to find ways to stay busy. It isn't easy but so long as we are anxiously engaged the Lord knows that we are doing our best here. 

But we spoke in 2 sacraments yesterday and then taught one of the priest quorums. It is kinda sad, but that is the most teaching that we have done this whole week was yesterday. After church we had 2 appointments where we taught less actives. It is hard to believe but I really miss teaching, I never thought I would find myself saying that. But It just comes down to the truth that we have to share is so important. As we share that the Lord will bless us.

But great news as far as my last area goes! (It is amazing how you just come to love people you teach and how even when you move on you still have that love for them even when you move on.)
Billie, one of the people we were teaching in Hurricane got engaged to her boyfriend. She really wanted to get Baptized but they were living together. So they got engaged. The other Elders in that area sent me a message letting me know. So I was super excited to hear that. 

It is exciting this work that we are engaged in. Some of the greatest joy I have ever had in my life is helping others to come unto Christ and repent. I know that as we all strive to help those struggling and bring them to the Gospel we will all be blessed to also experience that same joy. It is a promise that God has made to us. And He will never lie. I love you all. And I hope every single one of us remember those things that we have to be so Grateful for. Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Until next week.

-Elder Valentine

I stole some pics of Elder Valentine from his gf's facebook.  See below

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Week 14

So this past week was week 2 of my 3rd transfer! That is just crazy! Time is just flying by. So this past week was an ok week. A little slow as far as lessons and teaching people. We have gotten to meet a lot of the members in the area. So we have gotten to get to know them and they have in turn been helping us. We have a decent number of appointments this week. So we hope to fill out some more of our schedule and meet some new people to teach also. We basically did service all day saturday and then spoke in evening session of stake conference here in the stake we are serving in. Not really too much to report back on overall. So this will be a short email. Hopefully there will be more to report back on next week.

One cool thing I almost forgot to mention. I met one Douglas Heaton. He served in the Canada Alberta mission back in the late 60's. Which just so happens to be the same mission as My Uncle Bobby. Turns out they were both companions almost 50 years ago. The last place I ever thought I would ever come to and be able to hear the name Lehrschall pronounced correctly would have been the tiny mountain town of Alton Utah. So cool. But anyways that is all for this week. Until next week! I love you all!

-Elder Valentine

Monday, November 4, 2013

Week 13

So this past week has been quite the adventure. I was transferred to the Kanab 2 area. Which is the 4 northern wards in the Kanab stake. So we cover Orderville 1st and 2nd wards, The Glendale ward, and the Alton ward. We got to our area on Tuesday. On our way up the mountain it began snowing and sleeting. The most north part of our area, Alton, got 6-8 inches of snow. The members here said they can get anywhere from 2-4 feet during the winter. That amount is mainly up in the Alton area. Glendale and Orderville don't really get that much snow. Which makes me glad that I am living in Orderville. So the area we cover was being covered by sister missionaries. They have had sisters for the last 18 months or so. So my companion and I are completely new to the area. We have been meeting as many members as we possibly can. Which has been a lot. Sadly most of the investigators the sisters had do not want to meet with us. Some of them have been friendly but most of them have been very uninterested. So we have pretty much had to start over from square one. Which is fine. It is like we pretty much are having to open the area. We even moved into a different house then the one the sisters where living in. So we had to deep clean that one too. It was filthy. But I guess all that cleaning at Express really prepared me to do that. So thanks Steve!
But onto my companion. His name is Elder Greene, pronounced just like the color but with another e on the end. He is from, drum roll please!, Lexington, North Carolina! Crazy I know. He has been out 9 months. So he served in the same area that entire 9 months so this is his second area. Just like it is mine. It seems we have a lot of the same interest. His goal after the mission is to become a mechanic. Kinda funny huh? 

But anywho, we have been getting out and pretty much just meeting all the members. The residents in our area don't reckon things by addresses, they use landmarks like trees and rusted cars or other peoples houses. There are pretty much like 6-8 main families and almost everyone has the same last name. There are so many Esplins, Spencers, Maxwells, Coxes, Heatons, and Roundys and I am sure some others that I can't think of right now. So you have to get peoples first names here, otherwise you have no idea who they are talking about. But when you are trying to get around they just tell you to go to this persons house then turn right and go to the second house on your left with the big tree out front. I think addresses are easier but what can I say? If it ain't broke don't fix it right?
But anyways that is all for this week. Until next week!  I love you all!

-Elder Valentine

P.S. Here are some pictures of the snow and frozen lake. When we get a lot more snow I will take some more. I think the red rock with snow is beautiful though. I took these like 2 days after it snowed.


Week 12

So this past week was the last week of my second transfer. My trainer will be going home tomorrow. So he is done. Yesterday (Sunday) I received my transfer call. I am leaving Hurricane and headed out to Kanab on Tuesday morning.  So that is what is happening this coming week. So I will report back on that next week.
This past week was a great week. We had some great lessons with our investigators. And all the investigators that we have been working with for awhile went to church yesterday! All of the ones that have been struggling finally made it out to church. It was awesome to see them there. We even have one that is getting baptized this Friday! So the area is starting to pick up. We have been having a lot more help from the wards which is awesome. They have been reaching out to those that we have been teaching. Which is amazing. So now I just have to go and get this next area going. 
I am so grateful for the opportunity that I have had to get to serve here in Hurricane though.
You always hear missionaries talk about how they have come to love the people they teach. But you never really understand it until you come out and really go through it yourself. I was sitting at an investigators house. The one that we have been working with for so long. And he just looked at us and said he didn't know how we could be so patient. That through all his struggles we never condemned him or stopped coming by, or gave up on him. And as I was just sitting there it hit me that it was because we love him and his family and we know that he can do it. That he can push through those things that he is struggling with through the Power of the Atonement. And I told him that. That it was because we love him. I almost cried as he said the closing prayer. But I am grateful that I was blessed to meet Alvin and his family. And I am grateful that I was able to meet all those people that we taught. I look forward to this next area that I am headed to. But until next week!

-Elder Valentine

P.S. As promised! pictures from Our mission conference held on Sept. 7th!!!!!