Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Week 95: A Mentally Tough Week . . . and Another Car Accident

Hey Everyone!

Well, I'm going to be honest; this was mentally the toughest week of my entire mission so far. I have no idea why, but I kind of just got overwhelmed by stress. It was really the first time that has ever happened to me. It was weird...but the good news is I got over it and I'm fine now:) Just when you think you've seen all a mission has to throw at you, it throws a Mariano Rivera slider and messes you up!

Oh also, got in a car accident on Thursday with our new 2016 Nissan Altima...whoops. Thing is, someone rear ended me so I'm pretty sure it won't be my fault but the cops didn't assign fault at the accident so we'll see what happens. There were a lot of details that caused it like heavy rain, railroad tracks and a 5 way intersection not to mention this intersection was a detour route that we were taking because the regular route was closed. Throw all that together and I'm just grateful no one was injured! So that's the good news at least!

As for the missionary work side of things, it was definitely a tougher week, but we did manage to start teaching a lady named Tammy from knocking some doors. Tammy actually understands the message of the Restoration which is amazing! She didn't make it to church because she had to babysit but she is planning on next Sunday. Then get this! We were trying to think of a member's home that we could teach her in and Bishop suggested Sister Grinds. Well upon talking to Sister Grinds, we find out that she is Tammy's Godmother! We had no idea; how crazy is that?? Definitely a big miracle and we are excited to see how things pan out!

As for Eileen, she had a great time at girls camp and church again on Sunday! She still has a lot of questions, but little by little she is making progress.

One other cool story I would like to share is that last night we didn't have any teaching appointments at 8:00 pm so we decided to start visiting LA's on the prospective Elders list because if a prospective Elder is reactivated, usually 4 people join/come back to the church with him! Sounds pretty good right? Well on our third name, we find out the member is overseas right now, but his relatives still live there so we invited one of them to church. He said he'd love to come and will bring his family! We're going back to teach them tonight, and it should be pretty awesome!

That's pretty much it for this week, I just can't believe how fast time flies. Gotta make sure I don't get trunky! Hope y'all have a great week!

Elder Butterfield

McKay's current zone with President Richardson

Friday, June 10, 2016

Week 94: On the Right Path

Hey Everyone!

Well I'm going to have to keep this short as we played water balloon quidditch (spelling?) and so we didn't get as much time to email, sorry!

Basically Ilene came to church again yesterday, and she is going to girls camp this week, so hopefully that is a good experience for her! She has all of the right questions though, so things are going really well with her.

We had a walk in of sorts on Sunday at church as well. A lady we had given a chapel card to came to church on Sunday! We had talked to her and she seemed super interested but we just weren't able to teach her this last week. We're not quite sure what her experience was since we didn't recognize her at church, but we stopped by her house and should be visiting her Wednesday hopefully. The darn tropical storm warning makes it so no one wants to set up a return appointment :/

What else...oh I had a really cool experience I wanted to share! So Sunday night 8:00 pm rolled around and our teaching appointment fell through. And once 8:00 pm comes people in Stuart really hate you knocking on their door so we usually try to visit LA's. Well, we were close by one that the ward didn't personally know but they wanted us to see if they still lived there or not. I finally felt it was time to stop by, and it turns out she has never had a visit from the church since she moved to Stuart.  However, she had been thinking about how she missed the church and the Elders recently. Then we showed up! She fell away back when things got nasty with the press during Proposition 8 in California and didn't feel like she agreed with the church. But she really misses it and we shared the website with her, which really gives the church's honest opinion about that very heated issue. If anyone has questions about the church and LGBT stuff I really recommend visiting that website. Anyways, long story short, she broke down crying and was very grateful for our visit. So it's just nice to know that the Lord is still leading us and we're on the right path:)

That's all for  this week!

Elder Butterfield

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Week 93: Just Gotta Keep Moving Forward

Hey Everyone!

Well, this last week was a different difficult; instead of finding lots of people that then in turn didn't come to church, we just had a hard time finding interested people at all! It was definitely a bit of a frustrating week, but that happens sometimes. Just gotta keep moving forward, which is exactly what we did!

That being said, President Richardson advised us to go rescue more LA's in our area because that has a high likelihood of producing baptisms. So we decided to follow that counsel and have had some good experiences so far. Just some background info though: here in South Florida the membership records are very out of date. There are many members on the records that moved from the listed address 5-10 years ago along with a disconnected phone number or no phone number at all. So you never know what you're going to get. The nice thing is here in Stuart if they know someone has moved they use electronic tracking programs that search property and financial records to find current addresses:) So we are just taking good notes of all of our visits (ie if they've moved, bad phone numbers etc etc). So far we've tried calling about 100 of the 500 names and have made 2 good contacts hahaha along with 2 members that want their records removed. Go figure. But that being said we've found 2 members that have had little or no contact with the church in awhile and they have non member family living with them. And they're both open to visits from us, so that's good!

For one of them, we took over an active member who lives 2 streets away from the less active member and he didn't even know about them. So he should have some good contact outside of the missionaries now which is good as well:)

Last but not least, members have been working on a less active Spanish speaking family for years and they finally came to stake conference a week ago and church this last week! And their 15 year old non member daughter is loving the church and young women's and we are going to see them Thursday! My hunch is it will be a slower process; the mother is pretty cautious about returning, but I think good things are happening. Amazing what happens when you follow the counsel of your Priesthood leaders:)

That's pretty much it for proselyting, but I would like to share a funny service story! So we have been volunteering at a local food pantry called LAHIA (Love and Hope in Action), and they already love us. We just help them clean and whatever other housekeeping they need done. Well, we're pretty sure they've never seen such hard working 20 year olds:) They had us moving some furniture around on Memorial Day and so we made sure to vacuum well under and around the rug, and Elder Adams even decided to dust the artificial plant which was quite the project! So we spent a good 45 minutes dusting down that plant and while we were doing so the staff just couldn't believe we would take time to do something like that! So I think that left a positive impression on people. But then it was also funny because passersby were actually heckling and giving us a hard time saying stuff like, "Oh so that's the Mormon's job" or "Wow, I'm suprised they let you in here seeing that you guys aren't Christian." Thankfully that was the minority, but it's just funny how you can't win with some people! Anyways we had a good time and they already like us there after 3 visits so that's good:)

That's pretty much it for this week, hope you all had an amazing Memorial Day!

Elder Butterfield

McKay and Elder White?  Not sure how they know each other, but I will find out!