Monday, March 3, 2014

Fixing a Flat in the Rain

March 3, 2014 

Dear Family: 

Hi! It has been a really long but a really short week. It depends on how you look at it. Either way, it was a good one. So Lake Elsinore isn't quite what I was expecting. My area here goes from more humble than Hemet to way nicer than Hemet. But still not as nice as my last two areas. There are some nice areas in Lake Elsinore, it just isn't in my ward. Canyon Lake where my trainer served is right around part of the lake and it looks like it is a pretty rich area. I think our ward and maybe Ortega Ward are the two ghetto ones but ours is a pretty small chunk of it. I am sharing a ward again with another set of Sisters. Sister Haycock and Sister Sterner. Haycock is a really good missionary, she just got done being an STL and is now training a new missionary (Sister Sterner). They seem like they will be good Sisters to split the ward with. We shouldn't have any problems there. It is good working here. I haven't had this many names to work with since my first area.

So Monday was pretty crazy. Between E-mailing, taking care of a few other Elders and their transfers, and chasing down flowers, I didn't spend a whole lot of time to packing, but I got it all taken care of. Packing isn't any fun anyways. My ride brought a Nissan Frontier. We almost got all my stuff in it (I have a lot of stuff....). My bike didn't fit so we left it in the garage and he just brought it to me Tuesday morning. We actually went and picked it up from the Walters first and then didn't have room for it. It was at the Walters cuz that is where the sisters left it so I could get it back from them. I was hoping I would get to see the Walters for a minute but by the time we got there they had to leave to a dentist appointment. I missed them by like 5 minutes. We drove to meet Elder Ringwood (my new comp) at the stake center. It was actually 2 miles closer for me to drive there than it was more me to drive to the church we went to in Corona. Where we live is only like 2 miles from there. I live in another home-share. It is a family. The couple has 3 sons who all live there right now. John, Jason, and Kimo (his name is actually Andrew but nobody calls him that.) John will be moving to Utah soon. Jason will be going back out on his mission soon. He had to come home for a little while. We really only see the two sons, and they will only be here for like another month and then it will just be us. The mom works out of town so she is only home on the weekends, the dad works nights so we have to be really quite all the time. Even at night because he works from home (I think in customer service?) so we don't want them to hear us. So in a month it will probably just be me and my comp all by ourselves, pretty boring. I like living with them but I miss the Hoyts.  

Tuesday we had District Leader Council. We have all new district leaders so we get to form them they way we want them, (to do stuff). It is nice. It was close to a 2 hour meeting. That is how the one at the first of the month always is. The other ones are normally just an hour. We went through accountability, setting a zone goal, and making action plans for this next month. Elder  Ringwood reminds me of Lance Frandsen. Quiet, funny when he says something, pretty shy, but a super good guy. He is from Holiday Ut.  He went to Olympus High not Skyline High, so he doesn't know Trent (Blake's brother who is my age). Plus he wasn't really a social guy. We visited a ton a people. The two main ones were Michelle and the Fernandez family. Michelle is on date to be baptized on the 12th but has major depression and mental issues plus she smokes 20 cigarettes a day. Right now she is down to like 7. On the 5th she has to go cold turkey. Fernandez are just crazy. Missionaries have been there for a while. I don't know how well they absorb what we are teaching. We will see how they go. Hopefully we don't have to drop them. We got a referral (it was weird I haven't gotten a referral in a long time!) When we went to visit it we nailed a den of J-dubs. There was like 12 to 15 of them. They said they were about to go "pioneering" and I was like whoa.. Mormons are the pioneers take it easy. You guys just showed up. It is actually another way of saying they are going out to teach, he just thought he would try and seem all smart. We saw like 4 German Shepherds that day. People really like those dogs here. 

Wednesday we got two lessons in before lunch. I didn't even remember that you could do that. In my last to areas people weren't around until after 3 or 4pm. All in all we got 6 lessons. We had splits though. It was weird because I didn't really know anything about the people I was going to visit but it was fine. I found out that this ward? stake? I don't really know, has one of the largest welfare loads in the church. That really surprised me. Some of the places in this stake are pretty well off communities.  

Thursday we had MLC (Mission Leadership Conference). It is the meeting that used to be ZLC (Zone Leader Council) but we have the STLs now. That is where the President Smart, AP's, ZL's and the STL's all get together to direct the work of the mission and set a new month goal. It was from 9 to like 2. It was cool to work with all the leaders and get extra training from President. This month we have a goal of 100 baptisms. We committed to our zone doing 9 of them. We had lunch with all the district leaders and then they had a meeting after. It  was cool. Between the two leaderships all of my mission friends were there pretty much. I guess I just like good missionaries!! That night we had a lesson with Art, Elva, and Justin. We did a lesson on church attendance and the atonement. It was what the AP's trained on in MLC. They chose that because that is what has been holding a lot of people back from getting the Standard of Excellence and baptizing. We were doing a short training on it the next day at ZDM so we figured we better try it out. It was good, they have seen the missionaries for a while and haven't been to church. They committed to coming. We met with Michelle. We do everyday to help her overcome her addiction.  

Friday was ZDM (Zone Development Meeting). This is where we train the Zone. It was as lot different this time leading the meeting. ZDM as a missionary is normally something that is exciting but not as exciting as multi-zones. It surprised me how much it felt like I was just in a large district meeting. It wasn't out of my comfort zone at all. I actually really enjoyed it. The rest of the day was crazy ha. I forgot my camera, I will have to send the pics next week. It rained super hard. Some sisters in the zone hit a big rock and busted the tire right in the worst part of the storm. So Elder Ringwood and I went and changed it for them. I tried to get them to sit in one of the cars. They wanted to watch I guess ha. I was wearing a rain thing so I let one of them use it cuz she didn't even have a jacket. That is the fastest I have ever changed a tire! It was record pace, I felt like it qualified us for Nascar, but only a few passerby's witnessed it. One of them used my camera and took pics, but I totally forgot it. Elder Child texted me and told me they got Jacob Hicks back on date to be baptized. We ran out of stuff to do. We went to the stake center and built our report we have for the stake presidency and mission presidency when we meet with them on Sunday. We only had one lesson with the Micini family. One of the kids just got baptized so now we are working on his mom.  

Saturday we met with quite a few people. On Friday Michelle dropped us. She had been going through some hard stuff and decided to give up and would not meet with us. We knocked for a while but they wouldn't open the door. We picked her back up on Saturday. It wasn't easy though. I had a moment that reminded me of Jason's mission. When he came back he would always say "What It Is!!" and I never got it. He just said that is what a bunch of the people there would say. Well I taught one of those people but she would say "Ya Mean?" after like every 5 words even though most of the time it didn't make sense. It just kept reminding me of Jason talking about that.  

Sunday we had to be at the church at 6:00 to meet with the Stake president, one of the mission presidency, and the high councilman over missionary work. Art, Elva, and Justin came to church. If we would have gotten Michelle to church we would have gotten the Standard of Excellence. She got sick though. We had a lesson with Art and his family that night. As we were leaving Justin asked if he was sinning living with his parents because he isn't married to them (we had just resolved a concern about stuff to do with that) I just was shocked and didn't know what so say (he is 9), his dad said he would explain it. I was relieved ha. That was pretty much the week! Well that's all for now! Love ya tons! Bye! :)