Monday, 30 June 2014

Hulk Gone Wrong

Monday 10th March, 2014

So Sam got his transfer call on Thursday (they started them early this transfer!). He is going to the Evergreen ward in the Las Vegas Stake, with Elder Bowser. He will be staying in a four man apartment with Elder Blanco! It will be great for them to see each other again, Sam will also get to see him go home as he's only got 3 months left! It's a pretty big area, and yes he is still on his bike!

Sam is nearly all packed, he just has a bit of clothing left to pack, but he should be ready in time for the transfer meeting at 5pm. He has said all his goodbyes, he is pretty happy to leave though, he was really losing motivation in that area as he has just been in it too long. They've been seeing some success though, Samantha Norman told them that she has prayed and received an answer about the Book of Mormon, unfortunately she couldn't go too into detail since her husband was there.

Sam is glad all is going well with Amorie and that Maghan is making a good recovery, he said it's great to hear how much support she's getting from the ward.
He is excited and nervous to go to his next area, but he needs to be pushed out of his comfort zone, that's where the real growth comes.

He will be burning a shirt soon to mark his 1 year mark. He heard a story of an Elder a while back (not in this mission) that had the idea of setting his shirt on fire while he was wearing it, and then tearing it off hulk style. He lit the shirt on fire, but he didn't have the strength to tear it, he ended up getting 3rd degree burns and sent home, so Sam wont be doing anything stupid like that!

Sam has been studying the book of Romans, it's a great source of false doctrine, if it isn't understood by the spirit, or taken out of the context it was written in. They met with Jason for an hour or so, they didn't really bash, just explained (as politely as they could) that he needs to do a bit more study. He says the Bible and Book of Mormon contradict each other, but it's because he doesn't understand either book. He seems to contradict himself a lot: "It's by grace we are saved, not works, but that doesn't mean we don't have to do anything, we still have our part to do" (isn't that 'works'? just not the works of the Mosaic Law, which is the context of that chapter)

Exciting News

Monday, 3rd of March 2014

Sam thought it was such great to hear the news of Amorie Florence Mea Atkinson being born! He loved the photos, and he is so glad to hear everything went well despite the low iron that his sister had after delivery. She was 10lbs 5oz which is huge! He thought she might be a little more than average, but that was totally unexpected! Sam is so happy for Maghan and Chris! It's crazy thinking she will be just over 1 when he gets back, even crazier is that he hits his 1 year mark in just a few weeks, time has been flying!

This week they talked to the Normans about baptism, they didn't accept a date, but they are both thinking about it, they think it's her husband which is making her a bit unsure, she is loving church, and the one week she missed church (her 18 month old was sick), she read the lessons at home which were taught that week. They will keep working with them, but he is guessing he will be getting transferred next week. Sam has been in the Tule Springs zone four transfers now (by the way, it's pronounce too-lee), it's really unlikely that he will stay. He will find out if he is getting transferred on Wednesday if he gets a leadership call, otherwise he will know for sure on Saturday.

On Wednesday they had their temple visit, Sam said it was uplifting and the Spirit was strong, and he got a lot out of the session.

The zone leaders were talking about how they need to be unique to be remembered and earn member trust, so they've started doing a two part spiritual thought, and likened solving a rubiks cube to the Atonement. The members seem to love it, they'll have to keep thinking of new ideas.

They nearly had the police called on them the other night as well, it was just some over-enthusiastic neighbourhood watch guy, luckily the people's house they were visiting just happened to drive home at that moment, so it was obvious to him that they knew each other. Apparently some kids on bikes had been trying to steal cars. That makes total sense, bring a bike with you to steal a car, that way when you get in the car, you can leave your bike behind!

Today they started P-day at 5am, there's a game they started playing called Dominion, Sam thinks its great, super easy to learn and really fun. He is probably going to have to have a nap today some time to catch up on sleep though.

They've been doing a lot of less active visits, but in terms of finding new investigators they haven't had much success. They finally started co-ordinating with the ward mission leader how they can more effectively work with the members, Sam did bring up the subject about 20 weeks ago, but it was dismissed. Oh well, hopefully things will pick up after he gets transferred, the Deer Springs ward is a really low baptizing ward, the last baptism was in 2012. Luckily they have a great Bishopric and great members, so it can really get turned around if everybody gets on board with member missionary work.


Monday, 24th of February 2014

This week has been a good week, the Normans have been progressing well, her husband who was totally against the church has started listening in on the lessons, and he grilled some burgers for them when they went over for lunch. He is a really nice person, and he's really into gaming, so Sam just guesses he just gets touchy when religion comes up.

After Church yesterday, Samantha Norman asked them what she has to do to join the church, and wants them to talk about it tomorrow, so hopefully they can set her with a baptismal date tomorrow! She has two children, Krystina who has taken the lessons who they will invite as well, and Jessica who hasn't taken the lessons, but is coming to church and loving it. So things are going really well there.

They also met Jason this week, he goes to Canyon Ridge (which they refer to as the Great and Spacious building, or the whore of all the earth haha) and they spent almost two hours talking with him in his garage, he's obviously researched a lot about our religion, and he knows his bible really well, but they have disagreements on the interpretation of certain verses. He seems somewhat open minded, but Sam doesn't think he's going to listen to them. They will probably try a visit just to explain how everything comes down to whether the Book of Mormon is true or not (which they've already explained several times), but he seems pretty set in his ways.

Sam has been studying the bible more as a result, he is thinking of asking him what Ephesians 4 is all about, since he already agrees that there's been an apostasy, so that being the case, what are we to do? Just get thrown around by every wind of doctrine like it says? Sam isn't going to bash, but it's helpful for him to understand someone else's point of view.

There's also another family in their ward, there is a boy named Adriel who wants to be baptised. His mother is taking the lessons, but she is being taught by the Spanish Elders from the wrong zone, and the situation is a bit of a mess, so he will probably get transferred before they start teaching them.
Sam is surprise his sisters baby hasn't come yet as its overdue! He was impressed how he got to see a 3D scan, she has grown a lot more since he seen the last scan at 20 weeks! He is looking forward to seeing the real photo!

Transfers are on 10th March, he thinks he will probably be leaving, but he is getting ready for a new area. They've nearly visited everyone on the ward directory, there were 85 less active families when he got there, they only have about 5 - 7 left to contact, some people are a bit touchy and they need to work with members first before contacting them.

Sam keeps getting emails from random people as well, there must be another Elder Samuel Kennedy serving somewhere!