Monday, October 20, 2014

This letter came today from Chase's previous companion.  Of course, I cried:)

Hey Mom!!!!!

How are you doing?! I feel as if I haven't heard from you, it's been a while. Especially since Chase is no longer my companion but you know what?! He's still my brother and I love him! 

I want to thank you for the amazing birthday package I received last month. I shared it with the entire zone! You must forgive me for thanking you so late. I'm slowly getting out of the habit of procrastinating. hehehe I promise that I don't do the same with missionary work! =)

Chase and I had our last(Hopefully not, because there are still two other young adults that we've thought together that will eventually be baptized.) celebration as Carisil Lumapas shared he testimony at her baptismal service. The spirit was so strong and so many non-members were there which is great!

I don't know if Chase told you but I get super anxious, stressed, and nervous, when planning an event because I want everything to go perfectly according to plan. hahaha It turned out to be amazing!

I know for a fact that last night Chase and I were reminded to cherish forever the experiences we've had while serving the YSA branch! We were surrounded by so many people we loved.

Thank you so much mom for everything you've done and do for us! I love you! Elder Sully Guerrier =)   

Happy Birthday BAILEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   You are officially 18 olds!  And thank you mom for the money I would be starving without you :D


I am now in Cleveland, Texas.  It is just like Kountze.  We are basically in the middle of nowhere.  We drive a truck and there are a lot of humble country people.  My new companion is Elder Hunter.  He is from Provo, Utah and has been out for 1 week in the field now!  It has been crazy trying to get to know the area and go out and meet people.  It puts being outgoing to the next level!  From what he was telling me, Brandon Davies from the BYU Basketball team grew up for some of his life in his home.  Elder Hunter graduated this year and he played soccer throughout all of his high school career.  He is a good, hard working missionary and we will have a good two transfers together!  
When we first got here to Cleveland we were so lost!  The GPS was a life saver and even with it, it is not always correct.  But, we managed to make it through the week and meet a lot of people.  Don't ask me what their names were again because I couldn't tell you, but that will come over time.  On Wednesday we were able to meet our ward mission leader.  He lives way out in the middle of nowhere and has a lot of land.  His name is Brother Roberts.  He went to BYU and was very good at shotputting and supposedly holds a record there and here in Cleveland.  Everyone knows him and respects him; so he is a great tool for missionary work.  But, while we were there he gave us some of the wild hog jerky that he had from one of the pigs he decided to shoot cause it was in his yard either this week or last week.  It was okay, but at least I can say I have had wild hog now!  All the people in the ward on Sunday warned us that you never know what you are going to eat when you go to the Roberts; so I am excited to have a meal with them this week!
  As Elder Hunter and I were going to throw away all of the junk mail that we receive every week we stopped and talked to a girl on the way.  She asked us a question she said, "Why do people hate Mormons so much?"  We were then able to answer her question by teaching her the Joseph Smith Story.  It was really awesome and she was really interested in learning more, so we set up an appointment for the following day.  We went back by and were able to teach her the Restoration in its entirety and it was a great lesson we then committed her to read 3 Nephi 11, be baptized, and to come to church.  It took a while to get her to commit to it, but we were able to.  By the way her name it Korina.  Later that day we received a text from her saying that she was able to understand it and that it was really good!  Then, Sunday she came to church and really enjoyed it.  After church we read the introduction to the Book of Mormon with her and part of 1 Nephi 1.  She is progressing so fast!  Now I will tell you the back story on her.  She is from Oklahoma.  Her mom brought her down to Houston to live with her mom's boyfriend.  It didn't work out and her mom went back to Oklahoma while Korina just stayed here with her Aunt and Uncle that she doesn't really know.  She is only 16 and she just sits at home everyday and isn't really doing anything with her life at the moment.  But, the Gospel will help with that.  We were also able to commit her to be baptized on 15th of November, so we will see how it all works out.
  Other than that, we haven't really had many people to teach because the Elders just baptized the few people they were teaching; so we are working on building up a teaching pool which should be easy to do considering the fact that there are a lot of nice people here that are willing to spend a few minutes to learn about Jesus Christ.  We also met another guy this week who came to church, but wasn't interested in taking the lessons.  His name is Ronnie.  He is an older guy and this guy loves Jesus.  He invited us into his home and I have never seen more crosses on a wall than this guy had.  His house was kind of a mess though and he offered us some water so we took it.  We watched him take out the ice with his hands that were all grimy and set it on his semi-clean counter then proceeded to grab the cups and set held them at the side of the counter while he moved the ice over the semi-clean counter into the cup.  It was sick!!!!  And, he filled them up with water and handed them to us.  Both of us only took one sip haha.  I couldn't take it!!!!  But, we had a good conversation about Jesus then he tried to show us that we can't have anymore of God's word (about the Book of Mormon), but also tried to say that we could receive revelation.  It was really frustrating because he didn't even know what he was talking about so we couldn't have a good conversation about the scriptures.  Then, he told us that he wasn't interested in learning more, but would come to church and we just closed with a prayer and left.  Its interesting because after this was when we talked to Korina.  He actually showed up to church though and said that he enjoyed it.  He was an interesting guy.
Overall I am doing great.  I love this area and I love this ward!  The ward is amazing!  They are so loving and caring and they look to help the missionaries.  I love y'all and hope that Bailee has a fantastic Birthday week!  And that we all have a fun safe week!  Love y'all!
Elder Willden

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