|Yummy! Cafeteria food!!|
|The donut that smacked a missionary in the face during the war!|
|Our District at the Temple|
|My New Name Tag!|
|The Tripanionship of Destiny!|
|The crew getting ready for an intense game of Four Square!|
|Are we having fun yet?!|
It has been an awesome week. So much to talk about.
First of all, thanks for the package. It was great.
Also if you could thank Elder Jurges and his parents for the package, that would be great. It was an awesome surprise.
First I wanted to talk about some people that I ran into.
So I forgot to mention this in my last email, but one of the Swedish Elders was from Delta Utah. Now of course someone very special to our family was from Delta Utah, Elder Layne Larson. So I asked Elder Bliss if he knew the Larson family. He didn't, but his mother did. She new Layne when he was growing up. Small world. (Layne Larson is very special to our family...he was straight from the MTC into the Belgium/Netherlands mission the night he came to our house in Mechelen, Belgium to give us our very first official discussion by the missionaries, back in 1998. He would also be the Elder that baptized Patrick, Bryan's father. We love Layne Larson!)
I also ran into Sister Nelson from school. It was during lunch between the Sessions of General Conference. My collegas (a little Dutch coming at you!) and I sat down next to some sisters, and I swore I knew one of them. Long story short, we figured out how we knew each other. Mutual friends at BYU-I. (Brigham Young University-Idaho) We even have a picture of the two of us with our friends on Facebook. Kinda funny.
I also ran into Elder Higgins, another friend from school. We had two classes together last semester. We both didn't know that we had mission calls, so it was a real surprise to see each other.
Anyway, so this week the Swedes and the Nords shipped out to the field. That means that right now, it's just Dutch speaking and two Danish sisters in our zone. Today however, we are getting 21 new missionaries in our zone. I'm glad I'm not the zone leader haha.
Because we are halfway through our tenure here at the MTC, I got released as District Leader, and Elder da Silva replaced me. It's kind of nice not having to go to all the District Leader meetings.
So something really cool happened. The head of media in the Missionary Department of the Church came and spoke to us . He showed us the impact that technology has had on missionary work, and how it's helping move the work forward.
He showed us the numbers of referrals generated from internet ads, social media campaigns, and other forms of missionary work on the internet. Through Facebook alone, the church can reach more than 20 million non members through mutual friends of people who like the mormon.org page. Pretty amazing.
He also showed us the numbers for the #becauseofHim #ItWasMom #ShareGoodness and #LdsConf campaigns. During General Conference #LDSConf was in the top ten trending hashtags on twitter.
He then gave us training on what the church is planning next for Christmas. He showed us the draft that was just approved by the 12 Apostles. It was still a rough cut, and they are using the music from a popular song on the radio while an original track is being written. I'm not allowed to say anything more about it, but it's going to be awesome. Even with the rough cut, the Spirit of it was really strong. Every single missionary in the auditorium (about 2000 of us) got choked up. He then trained us for how we can use the things the Church will be doing at Christmas time to help teach people, and find new investigators. It was pretty awesome.
Also some great news, we have a new investigator! His name is "Sam", and he's an actual investigator. (investigator is someone they are teaching the gospel.) We found him as a street contact yesterday, and had our first lesson with him last night. He's from Peru, so he and Elder Matos (also from Peru) clicked really fast. I have to say it's so refreshing to teach in English. It's so much easier than Dutch haha. The funny thing is that as I was thinking about our lesson afterwards, I kept thinking about it in Dutch. Weird how that happens.
Last night we had one of the Quorum of the 70 speak to us, Elder Lawrence. He spoke about Satan, why he does what he does, what his tactics are, and how we can defeat him personally. It was really great. Our District meeting afterwards was even better. Everyone has such a strong testimony. I am so grateful for my district. We all love and support each other so much. It's going to be hard to say goodbye to them in the field.
OK, so I was told that I forgot to tell the rest of the jumping the bed story.
So two nights after Elder Hunter jumped the bed, he decided he wanted to do it again. This time he totally ate it. He jumped from the top of our bed to Elder Matos' bed, and totally missed. He bounced off the side of the mattress onto the floor. It was like a cartoon. When he hit the bed, his body went over on top, and his legs slid under making like a C shape around the mattress. He was like that for at least 3 seconds before he slid off. He didn't get seriously injured, but it was super funny. Then he tried to do it again. This time the rest of the zone was watching (they were all hoping he'd eat it again) but this time he made it. So being the crazy Scotsman that he is, he decided to convince my companion to do it.
It took ten minutes of talking Elder da Silva into it, but he finally took the leap.... and failed so hard. We thought he had made it, but the mattress was like a trampoline and bounced him back off. It was so funny. We were all laughing for a good 5 minutes.
That's all I have time for this week. We get our flight plans, which is pretty scary. It feels like we just got here. I hope you enjoy the pictures, we really get into our gym time here. It's about the only time we can let loose for the whole day.
Talk to you next week!
P.S. I got my name on my tag fixed yesterday, I went to the office and asked for a new one.