A week full of fun and parties

October 27, 2014

Hey! This week was full of fun and parties.

Street Sign
We had the ward trunk or treat and we partied at Bishop's house on his five acres and had a lot of fun with our investigator family. Then Sunday night we talked with more of the ward at the Robertson's house. I learned a lot from Bro. Robertson about helping others to Christ and His light instead of condemning or shunning someone for not having the fullness like we have in Christ's church. It's been something I have had questions about so God's been answering them through people such as President Porter and Bro Robertson. 
Elders Day, Tanner, Stringham, Fivas

At a less active's house, he showed me a computer he built. The frame was his desk covered by a sheet of glass and he had carbon fiber tape all over the wood making it look super cool. Anyway, it was a totally stellar gaming computer that lit up the whole desk/computer. I asked if you can get LED strip lights to light up a car interior.He said someone could do that easily. Haha yeah boi!
Pride of Zeus gyro burger

We have leadership council this Halloween! It will be way fun I am sure. Also, Sonic has 50 cent corn dogs all day on Halloween. Boo-yeah. We had Mad Mike's burgers today for lunch which was fabulous. I ate the Pride of Zeus gyro burger. 

[What are your plans for your zone on Halloween? Which zone are you?] We usually just keep working on holidays because they are such good days to find people to teach, so the Cincinnati North Zone should be hittin' it hard!

New companion, maybe??
This transfer though, we found out that exactly half of our missionaries are being transferred out! Yikes! I am excited to see who my new companion will be. I wonder if it will be a newly called Zone Leader...

Anyway, being a missionary is a lot of fun! I think I have found a home here in the Hamilton Ward. It took me a couple weeks, but I am starting to fit in.

Do you think he's fitting in?

Transfer Meeting Photos

Kaye Starr Singers

Elder Fivas and Elder Day
October 20, 2014

Hey family! 

[What was the highlight of your week?] The highlight of my week is a little hard to pick because there was a lot of fun to be had! We gave a training to the Ward Mission Leaders at their Stake Priesthood meeting on the new lesson that we developed in the stake to pump members up to make an invitation per the request of their Stake President at Stake Conference. It's a lesson on the doctrine of Christ and how making and keeping invitations increases an individual's faith in the Savior and how easy it is to make an invitation. I am very, very proud of you mom and dad because you always are writing things about the missionary work that you are doing by inviting people over and serving them and making friendships. I brag you up every letter I get ;)
Kaye Starr Singers night

[What was this activity you went to with singers from Layton?  Was it a missionary thing or a Stake activity?] The Kaye Starr Singers' performance was really good and totally unique. They had some fun lyrics to their songs including a song that quoted Elder McConkie's departing testimony. It was a stake activity that was put on to make an easy calender item that members could invite their friends to. So it was a missionary thing and a stake activity ;P
Dinner yesterday with the Partlow Family
(Love getting surprise texts)

[Our missionaries were able to see the movie "Meet the Mormons".  Have you heard about it/seen it?] I have heard the members and some investigators talking about how awesome "Meet the Mormons" is but I don't think we have any plans to see it in this mission. Slight bummer but we're really feeling the crunch to hit our baptismal goal. I have seen trailers of the movie and it looks beautiful. 

Spanish Zone Meeting
[We saw a picture Elder Marchello sent.  Was it a Zone picture?]  So the Spanish Elders have their zone meeting in the same building as ours so I slipped in their picture after being invited ;)

[Is Elder Stoddard an AP now?]  Yeah the awe-inspiring Elder Stoddard replaced me when I was transferred out. He is a great man, Elder, friend, and Assistant.

That's it for me!

Jimmy Frack and Jonathan
A pic of Bishop Weidner from the Western
 Hills Ward (taken last July)
Oh how could I forget the temple??!!! I went to Columbus for my bi-annual temple trip and we had recent converts there doing baptisms and after we did an endowment session. Oh was it glorious! The temple is such a special place.

Honestly I am relying more on others' cameras to take pictures so I don't have any to personally send you but I will get on my friends to send me some :P

I love you a lot family!

Elder Fivas 
A weekly meeting we have.
 We were doing service before hand
 so we were in normal clothes...

A pic of the truck (creepy, sick raccoon included).

The racoon came back the next night
and got in the cats bed.

His Work, His Time

October 13, 2014


Y'all better make it a good one because she is awesome and deserves the best. 

[What was the highlight of your week?] This week the highlight was a family of 5 (4 baptismal age) that we started teaching that the Spanish Elders found. The dad is from Mexico but the family all speaks mostly English. They came to church and they are wonderfully attentive and accepting. We look forward to what comes with them.

Randall's Baptism
I do want to tell of my wrestle with God this past week or so. I have been quite unmotivated relative to my past emotions and vigor and it was concerning me. I was worried about lifting the lowest producing zone to higher ground and helping the missionaries grow into what Christ has in store for them. I was seeing great progress and it didn't make sense logically why I would be down. I knew I would be more accustomed to the ward and zone with time but I was getting impatient. Well the scriptures teach us that Christ will hasten HIS work in HIS time.(D&C 88:73) I am not going to change our Savior's pace. I knew this in my head and my heart was being changed to fit it.

I just know where we are at with baptisms in the mission and it will take miracles to hit the inspired goal of 720 baptisms set by the Stake Presidents. I trust God, but I wanted to make sure I was lifting everyone by what I have come to know serving as an Assistant. God reminded me with enough force so that I would recognize that I will not be able to help the missionaries by worrying about what I am doing. Mark 8:35 was brought to my mind very clearly that I am not going to find what I am looking for by looking out for myself, rather, focusing on what I am doing to "save" others' lives will bring me the greatest growth and shape me most quickly to be like our Perfect Exemplar. Who cares if I am wondering why I wasn't as happy as earlier or having big numbers? I was reminded that it's not about me, even when I was not consciously thinking that it was. Hope that all made sense :P

[Why the question about Ward Council last week?] Ward Councils are the way that missionary work will flourish, so for 20 months I have been learning how to do it and I never asked dad about his. So yeah!

I love you all dearly! I am going to another baptism in Western Hills on Saturday for some boys Elder Martin and I should've baptized long ago :P Lord's timing!


Elder Fivas

General Conference Weekend

October 6, 2014

Hey Family!
[How was your Conference Sunday?] Conference was a lot of fun and I enjoyed my time in the church with the other missionaries immensely! I really do like watching conference in the church. I also really like being a missionary.

[Did you have some investigators?] Our investigators did not show up because Satan is a butt-head but I'll keep working hard, good things are happening a lot. 

[Did you have a lunch/dinner appointment?] I had monopoly McDonald's for breakfast lunch and dinner on Saturday (Let it begin!! I miss Monopoly so much) and the Maddy family gave us some pumpkin bar deliciousness for a snack before the afternoon session. We watched the last session with them and it was a lot of fun. 

Leadership Council Meeting
[What did you think of the Tooele Valley Choir!?] The Tooele choir was sweet! I saw Brand Reynolds and that made me way happy. I miss seeing Pine Canyon. I try not to think about it though because it makes my thoughts leave Ohio.

[What have you got planned for this week?] Our temple trip as a zone is next week so that's nice and exciting. This week we are finalizing a new lesson for all of the missionaries to teach the members in the North Stake. It's stressful because I don't care if things are perfect but this Stake President wants no loose ends which is good. We are teaching members to invite by the Spirit as a follow up to a promise made by the Stake President at stake conference. 

I went to Western Hills again for a baptism of one of the people Elder Martin and I found and taught. He is the most changed man I have been a part of on my mission. It was sooo cool to see him be baptized. One of the most horrible moments in my mission was when he cussed us off of his front porch. But God changes circumstances and through His grace he steamed off and we went and apologized a week later. He then bore testimony of how he was going to pummel us but God sent angels to hold him back and to protect us. The Spirit was clearly very strong when he told us this. He was the most alcoholic person I have ever met and he was scared to leave it. Detox can be dangerous. But he asked us when he could be baptized which was a stark contrast to when we first met him when we got doubled in and he told us he'd probably never be baptized but he liked us :P Elder Carranza should be sending me a picture.

[Who's Conference talk did you like the best?  Why?] One of my favorite conference addresses was given by Tad R. Callister. I am really looking forward to reading a lot when I get home and being able to study a little more freely and read more books. He shared the story of how the poor mother taught her kids that successful people have libraries. It just got me excited to be a powerful teacher of my children some day. President Porter just knows a lot and you should see the books he has in his study! He says it comes from studying consistently for years. Anyway, it just touched me. I noticed the more I read the better I do in school too. So it got me a little more pumped to take on BYU again.

Dad, I never talked to you about Ward Council because it never caught my attention. Now ward council is a huge part of what I pay attention to. haha So tell me what things were good and how did you overcome weakness and how did you do with the Work of Salvation? I agree that it will be awesome to talk more when I get back a little more wise ;)

Well here are some pictures!