Monday, February 23, 2015

Week 27: Yikes! A Florida Cold Front!

Hey Everyone!

I would say greetings here from Sunny Florida, but we just had a nasty cold front, and I'm pretty sure it was warmer back in Utah so ya.... guess I should've brought those sweaters like my mother told me too haha! Anyways, seriously though I hope everyone is having a good week back home!

So this last week was a little crazy to be honest. We had pros Monday, p-day Tuesday, then Wednesday we had district training, and Thursday we had apartment inspection. So it was just one of those crazy weeks where we didn't get as much proselyting time as I would have liked. But so it goes sometimes; I'm just pumped for a normal week where we can go proselyte more!

One other random piece of information I heard from Elder Swensen is that the Morales family was having a hard time getting to church when I left, which was sad. But I just talked to Elder Swensen and they have got the whole family back to church and Bro Morales is preparing for the Melchezidek Priesthood and Sis Morales is getting her patriarchal blessing!! How amazing is that??? That means I will probably get to see them sealed as a family in the temple, which is the most exciting thing in the world. I'm so happy!!!!!

Anyways despite our low numbers for the week, we were still able to see miracles! I would say that our biggest miracles of the week came by just talking to everyone. We had one situation where a lady (Ibis) pulled up to her house just as we were walking away and it would have been easy to just go on to the next house and avoid a potentially awkward situation. But we didn't! We went and talked to her and she is turning out to be a super cool investigator. She told us that she had been praying to God to send her someone and then we showed up! Not to mention the Elders in Key Marathon are currently teaching a friend of hers down there! Anyways, she is super committed to read the Book of Mormon, and we will see where things go from there! We're going to see her tonight, so hopefully we will be able to help her with that vision of baptism!

As for Alysia, we unfortunately didn't have her baptism last week :( We went over the interview questions with her to kind of see where she was at, and she just needs a little bit more preparation and understanding, but hopefully we will be able to help her get there!

Elder Crockett and I have been praying for families to find, teach, and baptize, and we found several this last week! First we found Miguel, who is this very humble, young father from Cuba who wants to be baptized and wants to read the Book of Mormon! He is just a very humble guy and very receptive of our message; he's definitely one of those super cool investigators that you love to teach because they're so easy! Hopefully we will have more to report on him next week!

We also found a super cool young guy (also Cuban, welcome to Florida :) who has a family of 5 who was really interested in what he had to say and says he wants to be baptized. We just need to go follow up with him and meet his family!

So even though we didn't teach or proselyte as much as I would've liked this week, God definitely has been blessing us to find young families to teach which is super cool! Now we just need to teach them and get them in the water :D

Well that's all for this week. Have a great week everyone!

Elder Butterfield

P.S. Congrats to Landon McKissick for getting his mission call to Colombia. That's super cool! I've met lots of Colombians, and I have to say that he will be eating good food down there and learning good Spanish (Colombians speak pretty properly)! So ya that's pretty awesome! You're gonna have an awesome time Landon!

Enjoying the Miami Beach Bowl 
Elder Butterfield and Elder Crockett

Catching chickens (Grandpa Lamar is smiling from heaven!)

The missionaries' fine, feathered friend.

The chicken-catching contraption.

Thanks McKissicks for the Reggie tee.

Interesting activities!  Any takers?

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Week 26: Catching Chickens?

Hey everyone!

So a big apology upfront, I was planning to send some pics this week but since we had a Pros Monday (read: Proselyting Monday, the worst invention ever created...! ;) our normal emailing place got messed up and I wasn't able to send pics, so sorry about that. Also we got cut a little bit short on time this week so this week's update will be a little bit smaller, sorry! I will do everything in my power to get some pictures sent next week!!

Anyways things are going well here in my new area of Coral Reef North! This ward is awesome and one of the strongest in the mission. It's definitely been a bit of an adjustment from my last area where the ward was a little bit smaller. Definitely changes the Lord's work up! But ya, Elder Crockett and I have a super solid investigator named Alysia who has been to church four times and now knows she needs to be baptized again by that Priesthood authority, she is just praying about a date! The goal is for her to be baptized this Saturday, we are just trying to help her receive that confirmation from God that that is what He wants her to do. So that's pretty exciting!

As well we are working with what can be considered a part member family. Charlie has a member girlfriend and he loves church and the Spirit he feels there! So we are teaching him and just helping him to get divorced from his old wife and as well get married and we will have another complete family here in the Coral Reef Ward! This place is loaded with families, I just can't wait to baptize a complete one :D Those are definitely our most solid investigators for the moment, but there is one miracle I have to share about Alysia!

So Alysia had come to church 3 times already but was waiting for an answer on whether she needed to be baptized again. Well it got to the point she wasn't really going anywhere so we helped her to recommit to living the word of wisdom and left her alone for about a week before visiting her again, just to give her some time to kind of figure some things out for herself. Well it turns out that she began to live the Word of Wisdom and doing so is what has helped her to receive answers to her prayers(No surprise there!). She now knows she needs to be baptized and is just waiting for a confirmation on the date, which we have set for this Saturday! It was a wonderful reminder to see that God answers the prayers of those with real intent! Now we just need to help her either get baptized this Saturday or set her with a new baptismal date.

That's pretty much it as far as the work is concerned for this week, hopefully even better news to come next week!

As for other random stuff...So the new house that I live in happens to have a flock of chickens that just roam around the neighborhood...we think that they're stray chickens but they could belong to someone, you never really know down here in Florida! Anyways well it turns out one of the pastimes of the missionaries in the house is to catch chickens. So they took all of the clothesline ropes and tied them together, and hung a dairy crate from them with a ten pound free weight on top to make it drop faster. So we just put food underneath this suspended dairy crate and then drop it on the chickens when they're dumb enough to walk under it! We've managed to catch 2 so far this transfer, probably more to come. I'll send some pics of this next week because it's pretty funny. So if any of you ever wonder what missionaries do with their very limited spare time like during lunch and stuff, they might just be catching chickens.... :)

Anyways thanks for everything that you all do and I hope that you have a great week!

Elder Butterfield

Monday, February 9, 2015

Week 25: Biking in Coral Reef North!!!

Hey Everyone!

I sure hope that all is going well for everybody back home! Things have definitely been a bit of an adventure for me this past week with transfers and everything! But I'm doing pretty great, just adjusting to my new area and all that good stuff. Wait, what's that? You want to know where I am? Hahahaha. All right --here we go. I guess I'll start off with transfer meeting :D So this last transfer meeting was absolutely insane with 21 new missionaries from the MTC as well as 30 new missionaries from the Fort Myers zone. Definitely one of the biggest transfer meetings yet! But anyways I got transferred to Coral Reef North with Elder Crockett!! Funnily enough this is the area where Elder Lamb began his mission--pretty crazy huh? Anyways the Coral Reef ward is awesome! In fact, it's so awesome that it's one of two wards in the mission that has 3 sets of missionaries assigned to serve here instead of the average two sets, which is pretty cool if you ask me! The other pretty crazy thing about the Coral Reef ward is that it is bilingual (both Spanish and English speakers attend the Coral Reef ward). So what happens is that they have a translator and then everyone in the congregation grabs headsets and they just take them on or off depending on what language they speak. I have to admit I feel pretty cool that I don't need a headset anymore :) Pretty crazy though huh? Only in Florida :D

I have to say though I definitely feel out of my element after living in Hialeah for four and a half months; my new area is primarily English even though there is a mix of everything. There's just a giant mix of African Americans, Caucasians, as well as Latins spread out here and there; it's a pretty diverse area! So that has definitely been weird for me to start doing missionary work in English because that almost never happened in Hialeah! But so far I'm enjoying it :) I even had had the mission office order me an English missionary tag because the Spanish one isn't very useful here!

One other thing about my area is that it's bike only again, so it looks like I'm just going to be a bike missionary! This area is much bigger than what I'm used to in Doral and we have to bike about a mile just to get to our area! I'm gonna have some good looking legs by the time I leave this area ;D Especially because Elder Crockett and I have been averaging about 6-7 miles a day on bike, which is definitely a bit of a change as well, but I'm managing to keep up so far!

The only other thing I have to say about areas is that it was a lot harder for me to leave Doral than I thought it would be. I had gotten to know the members pretty well there, and then when I visited Christopher on Tuesday night he started to cry...he almost made me cry...I definitely never imagined that it would be that hard to leave an area but it was. I mean I'm fine and everything but it just wasn't easy. But so the mission goes; it's crazy to believe that I will have been out for 6 months this month! Where did the time go??????????

Anyways, my new companion, Elder Crockett is pretty cool! Funnily enough he is actually from Riverton too! But ya Elder Crockett is super chill.  He's a ute fan so I can't complain haha! But ya I'm already killing my second missionary because Elder Crockett is going home after this transfer, but no worries he's not trunky (Trunky is what you call missionaries who are almost done and because of that they don't want to work!). Our goal together is to baptize a family this transfer so it's gonna finally happen! I just can't wait to meet them, whoever they are!

What else...oh yes....shout out to Elder Adams, who is now officially a FFLM missionary! I got the chance to talk to him for a moment at transfers but not too much. That kid is going to the hood! He's in El Portal with Elder Carver, so hopefully he is adjusting to everything okay!

Anyways I think that's all of the transfer news for the moment...if you want to look at my area just look at the city of Coral Reef (it's technically Miami but not really) and that should give you a general idea of things!

In other news, we have a miracle investigator from Transfer day! So all six of the Coral Reef missionaries had a meal appointment Wednesday, and this member Hermana Galvan has a friend visiting from Colombia named Ivan for about a month. Well after the meal she kind of just threw us at him and told us to teach him. So we introduced the Book of Mormon and he was super excited to read it and come to church. Well he hadn't read yet but he absolutely loved church and loved the restoration. So assuming all goes well and he continues to be as excited as he is, we will probably baptize him here in Miami! Which sounds crazy I know, but he just absolutely loves everything we have taught him so far and has already looked up the closest church where he lives in Colombia, and it turns out it's pretty close to where he lives! So it's definitely one of those crazy Florida situations,  but I think he is motivated enough that he won't have any problems. We shall see what happens there but it's just fun to teach someone that wants it really bad. I haven't taught someone like him since back when Elder Lamb and I taught Albert. So I'm pretty excited about that, and hopefully we will be able to find a family like him that lives here as well!

Other than that I feel like that's about everything for this week! It's been a crazy week but I'm super excited to get settled in and get to know the members here. Since I know Elder Crockett is transferring, I'm 99% sure I will be here next transfer which is good! Anyways I hope that everyone back home has a wonderful week, and I look forward to hearing from all of you soon!

Elder Butterfield

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Week 24: TRANSFERRED!!!!

Hola familia y amigos!

So last night was transfer calls to find out if I'm leaving this area or not and it turns out that Elder Butterfield is...............TRANSFERRING!!!!! Pretty crazy huh? I feel pretty weird to be honest. I'm sad to leave this ward after serving here for so long and that I'm leaving Elder Swensen already, but I know it's what the Lord wants so here it goes! I'm pretty excited to see where I go! Also transfers should be crazy tomorrow because we have the 30 new missionaries from Fort Myers as well as 21 new missionaries coming in tomorrow (shout out to my homie Elder Adams, who I will see tomorrow!) So ya transfers are crazy and should be especially crazy tomorrow! Who knows where I'm going! Oh and also Elder Swensen is training this transfer so he is freaking out  a little bit, poor guy! So anyways there's what's up for transfers now for the rest of the week!

Well, last week started off pretty normal, Elder Swensen and I were still trying to find more people to teach Monday and Tuesday, and then we had interviews with President Richardson Wednesday, so that took up a good chunk of Wednesday. Nothing too crazy though. Then Thursday was weekly planning; after that we proselyted as normal though Elder Swensen wasn't feeling the best. Then Friday I woke up to crapping my pants and got the worst flu bug I've ever had! We got "wrecked" as we say down here in the mission. It was awful! I was sick Friday, spent the whole day in bed and could barely move! Not to mention at one point my temperature hit 102. It was ridiculous! Basically from Friday to Monday a bunch of us in the district have been sick so whoever was feeling okay went and worked, and then the sick elders just stayed in the house together.  It was bad and awful!

So ya we weren't even able to proselyte too much this past week which kinda sucked but so it goes sometimes... Thankfully with the help of the mission nurse, Sister Martin, I was able to get feeling better relatively quickly! Seriously though, that was the worst flu I've had yet. I could barely get out of bed on Friday--not cool!

Anyways all the craziness of the week aside, we were at least able to go follow up with Cesar that I talked about last week. Our appointment fell through Wednesday but thankfully we were able to see him Sunday after church and talk to him. He realized that he needed to read the Book of Mormon and recommitted himself to read it! So I think they'll baptize him; even if it takes awhile, he'll get there which is pretty cool:) Other than that though nothing super cool or crazy to report in terms of investigators which isn't fun but it happens sometimes, no point in stressing about it. Just means it's time to work harder!

Well, I think that about sums up my last week here in Hialeah.  Rough way to end it, but I'm excited to go to a new area! I hope everyone has a great week. I love all of you!

Elder Butterfield