Hey all you Elder Organ lovers!! I have a treat for you!! Here it is... FINALLY (his first week in the mission field!)
February 25, 2013
"Dear Family and Friends,
So I am here in Montana! My adventure so far... On Tuesday the 19th our group of 21 missionaries going to Montana split up into 2 flights. I was on a 9 AM flight out of SLC with 11 other missionaries. We got on to a little 24 seater jet and 45 minutes later we landed in Billings.
There, we were met by President Mecham, his wife, and his assistants. It was a warm welcome. We were taken to the mission home/office and had lunch then we got a treat that no other missionaries coming in have gotten...We were able to go to the temple! After the temple we had interviews and training. Wednesday we did an all day training and late afternoon we were assigned our areas and trainers.
My trainer is Elder Brown from Plasterville, CA and he has been out 4.5 months. My area is Lakeside, MT which is in the Northwestern corner of the state. It is a little town of about 2,000 people and is about 80 miles south of Canada. It was pretty crazy getting here from Billings. I had to sleep in the mission home another night because my area is a 10 hour drive away from Billings. So Thursday I got up and got in the "Transfer van" with 9 other missionaries. We drove to different areas dropping Elders and Sisters off at their various areas. Those who remained in the van were dropped off in Helena where our specific zone leaders picked us up.
Long story short, about 11 hours after 1st stepping in that van, I stepped out of a mission truck in Lakeside.
So a little more about Lakeside... My area! It is small like I mentioned and it has been pretty deprived of missionaries for 6 to 8 years. So all the records in the area book are old and just not very complete. Elder Brown and I are the first permanent missionaries here in at least 3 years. It is like we are detectives trying to put together records and pieces of the puzzle of what has happened here! Here in Lakeside we have a family branch and a YSA branch. We attended both yesterday. In the family branch we were both asked to speak and there was 29 people there. In the YSA branch there was 12 people and we were told to be prepared to teach Sunday School or Priesthood every Sunday as needed. Both branches were notified that we were coming and they were all super excited about having permanent missionaries!
Everyone has extended a very warm welcome!
An especially warm welcome was from our host family. We live with an older couple in the branch. We live in a little back bedroom there and are allowed to use anything in their home. They are extremely nice and remind us every day "What is ours is yours so feel free to dig in to whatever you want or need."
It is a tremendous blessing! Love them so much already! And maybe will be able to help them with their Word of Wisdom problems ;)
So Friday and Saturday we went tracting to try and find some people to teach because we are starting from what we consider ground zero in this area. The tracting both days was done as it snowed and the temperature dropped so it was pretty dang cold! Ha ha!! But after many, many doors we were let in by an older gentleman. It was a pretty interesting 1st experience in the mission field ha ha! He told us that he has seen God the Father and also seen and talked with the Apostle Peter. Because of these visitations, he said, "I believe 100% Joseph Smith and believe 100% the Book of Mormon, it just makes sense that Christ would visit those here in America." So long story short, we are listening to him tell us about all these visions he has had, the book he has written and other things, then we teach about some things out of the Book of Mormon, I invited him to be baptised and he tells us, "Oh I don't need to be baptised because God told me I was baptised before I was ever born." Or in some previous life (because he believes in reincarnation) so all of it was interesting to say the least ha ha!!
We were let into 2 other homes of Evangelist Christians and had discussions about the Godhead. We plan to follow up with one of them. So it has been an adventure thus far and a lot of fun discussing and testifying of the gospel!
I need to go for now but thank you all for your letters, love, and support! This is God's work and I am so blessed and happy to be one of His representatives at this time!
You guys, doesn't he sound SO good?! Love this guy so much! Keep all those letters coming because he just LOVES them and I know they never fail to make him smile.