Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Fort Jackson

The Fireflies are Back

Hey family!! How are ya?

Skyler wrote me!! Man I was so pumped to hear from him. He says that he has 3 weeks left. Crazy. Tell him a letter is on its way this week. Tell him I love him!

At Fort Jackson last Sunday I taught Sister S. I actually started teaching her two weeks ago and then I taught her again last Sunday. She is from the Virgin Islands. She is way elect. She has so many questions... not so much in contrary to what I teach her, but rather in seeking the truth. Sister S reminds me a lot of R and A down in Charleston. Last week’s lesson was just incredible. I was able to sit down with her and her fellowshipper/battle buddy, Sister R, and teach her everything. We talked for about an hour and a half. I taught her and prepared her for the baptismal interview questions. She asked a lot of questions. I realized in the lesson how much I have come to understand about God's plan, His love, and the atonement. I’m grateful for it and how we can grow through the restored gospel. Sister S is so cool.

Zone conferences started this week. Elder D and I each trained. I trained on extending the baptismal commitment in the first lesson. The zone leaders trained too. We then had lunch and afterwards Sister McConkie spoke. President spoke for the remainder of the meeting. He gave a lot of really good advice. The basis of his comments were on becoming the right kind of missionary and lifting those around you. It was good. He’s getting the mission prepped for the transition.

During the zone conference in Florence, President Holm called. President of course threw him on speaker and had him say a few words to the congregation. It was neat. I have yet to talk to or meet President Holm, but he sounds pretty cool. He told us how excited he is to come out. He gets here two weeks from Tuesday.

The goodbye at the end of the meeting was tough to watch. President hugged each missionary and he just looked heart-broken. I still get to see him for quite a few days, but just watching made me get that lump in the throat feeling. It was very sad. Not as much "fun" as we had planned. It was still really good, but definitely not what I expected. We have two more this week. Charleston and then Columbia.

We visited L last night. Man he is so funny. He pronounces my comps name as "Elder Doooglas." hahaha We had a short lesson about missionary work. We are going to take him out teaching with us this coming week. He is so excited to share the gospel. He told us how it is a duty as a priesthood holder. I think I did a double take when I heard that.

He speaks pretty good English. It’s awesome. He speaks even better Spanglish. He’ll tell his daughter "ponga tus choos(shoes). Vamos a la church." haha Last night he was commenting about my Spanish. He says it's good but I’ll miss a word here and there. But he said, "it's okay, it’s not your mama language." haha

The fireflies are back. I caught some a couple of times this week. They are awesome! We caught some at L’s house. He asked "How does it work?" - I told him "I dunno - you're the electrician." hahaha

I think that's it. A lot happened this week. I got to do some sweet Spanish work. It’s been a blast. I conducted a Spanish baptismal service this morning.

Love ya

Elder Stoneman

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

In My Mind I'm Going to Carolina

With President

Sam Bought a Cow?

Thanks Mom and Dad for the letters. Give Aunt Suzi my best. And drive safe.

Hahaha Sam I can’t believe you bought a cow. I hope it has a cool name. Herman the blowfish was my favorite and probably tops them all.

Mom, thanks for the package. And for the cash. Elder Douglas and I went to lizard’s thicket again.

It has been a good week.

Sunday, we had a miracle baptism. Remember Brother J? He came about a month ago. He was committed to baptism and all set. He was so cool. When I taught him, he knelt and prayed with me and had an awesome experience. The next week was graduation, but he was staying at Fort Jackson for AIT. Ever since, he hasn't showed up. Well Sunday, he just showed up with a recent convert. We reviewed a few things and then I asked him, if he was ready and he said yes. The recent convert ended up performing the baptism. It was so cool.

On Tuesday we had zone leader council. President’s last one. He’s to the point where he is doing all of his "lasts." According to the brethren, "the 4th year is always the hardest." Tell Uncle Dan to get pumped!

Elder Douglas and I re-did the transfer board at both the office and at the mission home. We changed the style of it and now it just looks sweet!

Thursday, we went out with a companionship and we both had awesome days. I taught this cool family who home schools their children. Way nice and humble people.

It was so hot. I forgot how bad it got last year. Yikes. At the end of the day, the craziest storm came in. the lightning and wind were nuts. Elder Douglas and I drove home and there was a traffic jam on the freeway at 1015. We were safe - no worries mom. When we pulled into our apartment complex, it was just pitch black. The power was out. It was a little ghetto, but we survived. The next morning it came back on.

Yesterday was such a fun day. We had the west Columbia zone leaders call their zone and set up appointments all day. We went all around visiting the investigators throughout the zone. It was so fun. I taught a few Spanish families. One of them knows L. And they can't believe that "he's a Mormon." hahaha It’s a small world in the Spanish community. I loved being able to do some Spanish work this week. It was a blast. I also taught a Brazilian lady. I’m brushing up on my Portuguese.

We also taught a few others of the investigators. They were so cool. We helped firm them up for baptism and committed a few new ones to baptism as well.

This upcoming week, we start zone conference. It is the final one. We’ll give President his gift and do a few other things. He’ll have some final words and that's it. It’s so crazy. He only has like 3 weeks left. I’m nervous. It’ll be fun though.
Love ya

Elder Stoneman