Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Week 40: A Last Minute Miracle

Hey everyone!

Greetings from very sunny Florida. Apparently you guys are getting more rain back in Utah than I have down here? Pretty crazy to think about. I still haven't even been drenched on the bicycles in this area, which is nothing short of a miracle let me tell you! Which brings me to an interesting update. So we're on car share with the other elders in this ward, but the mission as a whole got rebuked for going over miles last month. Apparently the last vehicle coordinator had been super lenient with it all. The new one is cracking his whip! So we got cut down from 1700 miles a month to 1200. Which basically means with how far away our meetings up here in the North are that the car won't even be for proselyting but just for meetings and baptismal interviews hahaha. So looks like a full bike area for me once again, yay! At least I'll stay in shape I suppose:)

Anyways this last week has been a little crazy, we had a zone conference last Tuesday to help us prepare for the oncoming Hurricane season which was interesting. I will definitely be following Sister Richardson's advice to ask the Lord to temper the elements if it be His will. I do NOT want to live through a hurricane!!!!!!! But ya that was pretty much it for that zone conference, just preparedness stuff.

Not too much happened on Wednesday that I can remember, but Thursday we had an apartment inspection. Fortunately we passed and didn't get rebuked too hard so that was nice:) Then that night as we were out knocking doors a lady came home just as we knocked on her door. Surprisingly it turned into this crazy miracle where she had just found out her cousin had passed away five minutes before and that she knew that God had sent us! It was pretty amazing and she was very touched. Unfortunately she wouldn't commit to church, but hey hopefully she'll remember us the next time the missionaries come around:)

Friday we went back to Paul and Bethany that I mentioned in my last email. We had an awesome seafood dinner and I had crawfish for the first time in my life, it was actually pretty good! Unfortunately they were mostly just wanted to visit with us as company and we were barely able to teach the Restoration. The Spirit was there but they didn't accept too much, however they committed to read and pray so we will see what happens with them this week. Either we'll follow up and they'll be awesome or they're going to start avoiding us. Should be interesting to see what happens!

But hey, that's not all. Despite the difficulty in helping people to commit to church this last week, God is good! He gave us a last minute miracle on Saturday afternoon! We were out riding our beloved steeds (At this point I'm looking for suggestions on what to name my bike, email me those suggestions :D )and Elder Clark saw a woman with a U-Haul so we stopped and offered to help. Her name is Ramona and she was very grateful for the help. She soon asked what church we were from and just flat out told us that she was going to come to church with us. We didn't even invite her, she invited herself!! Her specific words were "I know y'all don't believe I'm coming, but I'm gonna be there tomorrow at 10:00 AM!" Best part is she actually did. She loved it and said she's coming back! She even mentioned that she felt that God had put us in her path, and that's why she came. God truly is gathering His elect and it's a pretty amazing thing to see! Funnily enough we still haven't taught her anything, but we're taking Gospel Principles teacher and her husband over to teach with us tonight so it should go pretty well! Looks like another baptism is in the works!!! Definitely the biggest miracle of the last week, pretty awesome stuff:)

What else...Oh ya, the zone had this crazy exchange go down on Wednesday and I went to the most ratchet (read:ghetto) place I think I've ever seen in my life. It's called Belle Glade and literally words cannot describe how ghetto that place is. We were definitely the only white people in the whole town. Go look it up on Google Maps, it's quite the place. That was a special adventure as well because we only talked to Haitians the entire today and they all speak Haitian Creole. So I just followed the other Elder around all day while he did everything, quite the experience. I guess now I know what it feels like to be an English missionary haha! Seriously though, look up Belle Glade and tell me what you think:)

Well that's all for this week, I hope you all have an amazing week and that it stops raining so much there!

Love you guys,
Elder Butterfield
Emmanuel's Baptism

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Week 39: The Lord is Good

Hey Everyone!!

Well, Emmanuel got baptized yesterday morning before church! It was an amazing service and surprisingly a stress free baptismal service for the most part, which is very unusual. Usually those things are stressful to the very end!!! So ya, I'm very happy and excited about that. His long time member wife was beaming and was so happy; it really was a wonderful experience.

The coolest thing about it was that Saturday when we were visiting him with the Elders Quorum President, he mentioned how grateful he was to us and, as well, how since I had come into the picture everything just clicked and started to go smoothly! That was a testimony to me that transfers are inspired, and it was really cool to see that the Lord needed me here to help Emmanuel! Definitely was a bit of a payoff I guess you could say!

That was definitely the high point of this past week! However, we had some pretty amazing things happen in the area as well. Wednesday night as we were out knocking doors and talking to people, we helped a lady move some furniture into her apartment. She had moved from New Jersey and has lived here for several years but had never met the missionaries. So she thanked us and then started to ask us questions about what we do and different things. So we told her that we help people prepare for baptism, and she told us that she's always wanted to be baptized. Pretty crazy right?? But wait, there's more!! We taught her about the Restoration on the spot, and then when we got to the First Vision, something amazing happened! We shared the First Vision, and two seconds after we finished, all of the hallway lights in the apartment complex came on. It was a pretty surreal experience! Unfortunately, this great lady wasn't able to make it to church, but we will make sure that happens next Sunday because she is awesome! She and her son were our only new investigators for the week, but we had some other cool things happen as well!

Saturday night, we were praying to find a family of five as we went out to knock doors, and at the last house we contacted on that street we found a super cool family of 5! We only met the parents, but they were the nicest people, and after a long conversation with them, they told us that we have to meet their kids and invited us to come back for dinner. I'm really hoping that they turn into investigators because they are the nicest couple I've ever met on my mission. Hopefully future Mormons!

A few other things happened that were awesome, but those were the highlights for the week. The Lord is good :)

This week will be pretty busy with meetings as we have zone conference tomorrow, but hopefully we will be able to get some new people to church this week!! That's all for now.

Elder Butterfield

The Florida Coast

Monday, May 11, 2015

Week 38: Upcoming Baptism

Hey Everyone!

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Mother's Day! I know I sure did; it was great being able to talk to my mommy :)

Well this last week was decent; the good news is that we should have a baptism this coming week! We have been working with a recently married Nigerian couple, of which the wife is a strong member; the husband just barely came to the United States and had never heard of the church before. However, he has been coming with her and loves it! He has been studying the pamphlets and the Book of Mormon despite his difficulties with English and has a baptismal date for the 17th of May before Church (apparently the Bishop here prefers Sunday baptisms, or so I am told). It's just really awesome to see his sincere desires to find out for himself, as well as to be unified with his wife.

We especially had an amazing miracle with Emanuel on Thursday following up with him on the Word of Wisdom, which we taught him on Tuesday of last week. We took a Hungarian member who is here visiting in the United States to help him overcome his concerns about the Word of Wisdom. Emanuel was very concerned about leaving behind tea, as it has been his pick me up in the morning for all of his life in Nigeria and here. However, Thursday the member, combined with the Spirit, were able to help him overcome his concerns with tea and he committed to live the Word of Wisdom!!! This was amazing considering that he wouldn't commit only two days ago! So Emanuel is doing great and should be baptized soon! Something else interesting with Emanuel was that he told us normally in Nigerian culture, the husband starts out going to the wife's church, but in the end the husband starts taking the wife to his church. However, he told us that he's not going to do that because he feels that this is right for him! Pretty awesome right??

So ya, super excited to see Emanuel's baptism. It's going to be amazing! Other than Emanuel though, we don't really have too much going on in the area... :/ We're hoping to rectify that this coming week and find some new investigators to teach and baptize! Elder Clark and I are working to overcome our differences and hopefully with that goal in mind, good things will happen this week!

That's pretty much it though, nothing much else to report this week...but hey, BAPTISM INCOMING!  I hope that you all have a great week and that summer comes fast enough for all you:)

Love you guys!

Elder Butterfield


McKay's new apartment: kitchen 

McKay's new apartment: living room

McKay's new apartment: bedroom

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Week 37: Blast off to Jupiter!

Well, transfers have come and gone and boy did they throw me a lot of curve balls!

So I got sent to another planet, Jupiter. JK I mean Jupiter, FL! It's an english ward and pretty much no spanish to be found! I was definitely a little frustrated about that considering President told me my spanish is excellent in my last interview, but I got over it haha. I'm still junior comp (J.C. 4 life!) and I'm companions with a missionary who got transferred over from the Tampa mission when the Fort Myers stake joined our mission, his name is Elder Clark! He's from South Jordan and went to Bingham so perhaps some of you guys know him or his family.

But ya that's pretty much it as far as transfers, just pretty surprised to be sent up north where there are pretty much no Latins. But I suppose the Lord has a work for me to be done up here. I'm just trying to figure out what it is!

As well, they shut down my old area and combined it with the zone leader area, so hopefully they can baptize Rebeca's family down there!

As for the area of Jupiter itself, it's definitely not Miami (I miss Miami a little bit, the craziness was fun!)! It's a more relaxed, wealthy white community full of golf courses but as well there are apartments for days here! So just like your average Florida city, richest of the rich to poorest of the poor. So there is still some diversity, minus the Latins I came to love in Miami haha.

But the ward has some very strong members which is good. The Bishop is very nice and an IT director like I want to be so that's pretty cool! As well the Elders Quorum President is very pro active and magnifying his calling well which is great! The bad thing is we had stake conference because there was a new stake president so I didn't get to meet many members Sunday. Hopefully in the coming week and next Sunday!

That's pretty much it though, I'm just a little shell shocked this transfer with white people culture and a new area, so hopefully I'll be able to give a bit better of a report next week!

As far as missionary work, there are several part member familys we are working with and it looks like one really is going to get baptized! His name is Emanuel, he's from Nigeria and just came to Florida a month ago. He's married to an active member here in the ward and has been to church several times, so we are just working to overcome a few things but he looks to be a very good potential! There are a few others, but they have cooled off since I showed up:( Hopefully we can go find some other really cool investigators this coming week!

Well that's all for now, love you guys!
Elder Butterfield