Monday, August 13, 2012

"This week was full of challenges and trial. Elder Silva and I decided to both work on Patience this month, and boy did we learn patience. Some of the pretty crummy things were, getting a flat tire, having to wait in a doctors office for two hours on our pday so spanish could translate a piece of paper... Also locking ourselves out of our apartment, having to sleep on spanish's floor and only getting and hour of sleep, and to top it all off we had nothing but rain this week. It was a pretty rough one. But with trials comes blessings. 

One of those blessings happened this week! We went and visited a family that we had been stopping by and talking with but never really about the gospel. But this time we felt like we should. So we introduced them to the book of mormon and also taught them the first lesson. They loved it! The ladies name is Michelle and she keeps telling us how much she loves us. It's pretty funny. But then the guy, Jay, just sits there and says "that makes sense" and "Yeah of course its all true." They are so sweet. We also met there friend Shelly. She is always asking us questions and wanting to know "the truth" She said she can't wait for her husband to get home (offshore) so we can start teaching him too. She after all that rain, came an awesome rainbow!

The lesson I learned this week, is that no matter how down we get, no matter what crap is going on... things always get better. The Lord remembers us in our trials. He is very aware of what we are going through and lets us struggle just long enough to allow us to grow. I don't like that sometimes, but looking back I'm so glad I've had those experiences. I love this gospel, I know it's true. When times get hard it's something that we can fall back on and gives us hope to get through those storms. I love y'all and I miss y'all tons."

Friday, August 10, 2012


"First things first! Happy 25th Anniversary Momma and Old man!! I'm sorry I missed it. But I love you and I'm proud of you!

What a crazy week! Both of my past companions went home this week! And I found out who I will be training! I'm training Elder Silva. He is from North Ogden Utah. He is a nice kid. We don't have a lot of the same hobbies or interests. But he is a great kid and is excited to learn and work hard. We have had a really good first week filled with lessons, service and dinner appointments! He is still getting use to the bike. Wait, I'm not even use to the bike! But, I see a lot of great things happeneing with E. Silva. He is not prideful, and that's all that I care about. I don't like prideful missionaries cause it's not about us!" 

Goodbye, Elder Heaton

"This week was kinda weird cause it was E. Heaton's last one in the field. So we spent most of our time saying goodbye to the members and other people he has gotten close with. But because of him leaving I obviously have to get a new comp. And so I got a call from President Wall last night, and he asked me to be a trainer! I'm really stoked for that. Being a trainer is probably the best calling you can have as a missionary. Mainly because you get to focus solely on missionary work and teaching the new guy how it's done. I feel blessed that the Lord and President Wall trust me to do this. It should be a fun time. I cant wait to learn from him!
But this week we had a lot of dinner appointments! We ate like kings all week. Church was good this week. Sadly none of our investigators came. But E. Heaton and I were asked to talk this week. I spoke on being an example to
those around us and how we can make that difference in someone else's life to make them want to be a better person. I used some scriptures that were really helpful. ( 1 Tim 4:12,15,16 Alma 17:11). 
We had a meeting this week and so we spent the night at another missionaries apartment. We woke up the next morning at 5 and played dodgeball. It got pretty intense. E. Heaton sprained his knee, another elder sprained his thumb and I cut up my thumb trying to pull a White Goodman from dodgeball and ended up crashing into the curtain divider in the gym! But it was pretty fun!"

New Orleans

"It was a weird week. I'll start with New Orleans (Nawlins)... it was really fun. So much to do with such little time. We started off by taking a ferry across the Mississippi River from the west bank to the east bank where downtown New Orleans is. I got some really cool pictures from the ferry. But we walked to the
WWII museum, we didn't go inside the museum cause it was so expensive and didn't have much time, but they show like a 30 min 4D movie that we did see. It was pretty sweet. I wish they would have given more historical info but it is definitely something that I recommend to go see if you are ever in New Orleans. Then from there we went down to the French market which is across from the French quarters, which is off limits to missionaries. The French market was just like those long walk ways with a bunch of venders, like a swap meet or stuff down in Mexico, which I love! It was cool to see all the different items they were selling. I didn't buy a lot of the stuff that I liked cause I have the faith that I will serve there someday. Overall it was a fun trip. Like I said, lots of things to do, with not a lot of time. But it was so cool to just walk the streets and feel the culture just sinking into you through the sidewalk. 
On a good note Gaby came to church! It was really cool. I don't know how much I've said about her but she is 12 and a less active member's daughter. She is a devoted follower of Christ. She has been going to a different church by herself since she was 5! So she really enjoys learning about the Gospel. We had a young women's activity this week and she was able to meet other girls her own age. Which was great cause that is one of the hardest things for a kid, is finding people to fit in with. So it was great. We hope to see her progress and be ready in August. Our other main investigator didn't come. She has a lot of family issues and plus she lives with another less active member. We hope to see her sometime this week. As for our recent converts go... Greg is so solid, he passed the sacrament again this week and is just a total stud! Ralph went to work again but this time on a boat on the river so he is able to communicate with us."

Thursday, August 9, 2012

"We are going to New Orleans today for Pday! I'm so stoked! This week went great! We picked up two new investigators. We are starting to see a lot of fruit from our labors. One of them is a less active member's roommate and she and the less active member actually came to church this Sunday. Another is a less active member's daughter who is 12. We went over to help the less active member, who just happens to be Catherine's, our recent convert, sister, do service and found out that her daughter was never baptized. So they
invited us over for dinner this week and we taught her about the Book of Mormon and invited her to read it, she loves to read and was excited to get started on it. We had a really powerful lesson with them on the importance of families and why the Lord commands use to obey the Law of Chastity and Word of Wisdom. 
Church was really good this week. We had a bunch of less active members there that we have been working really close with. Also Greg passed the sacrament for the first time! After he finished and was sitting down, he came up to us with a huge smile on his face and shook our hands. I was so proud of him and I'm sure he was proud of himself. There is no doubt in my mind that he felt the Spirit and felt important while he was doing his priesthood duty. It was a tender mercy of the Lord for sure. Sister Dupree also gave a great talk on Charity. I'm not sure if I have told you about Sister Dupree or not, if I haven't, I need to repent because she is soooo amazing. She has breast cancer and is going through a lot, I'm sure Aunt Dan knows exactly what I mean, and yet she is so caring and loving and is always looking to help other people. She is always asking about how Aunt Dan is doing and has even given me a few things to give to her. Sister Dupree is definitely one of my heroes. She never complains and always has a smile on her face."

"This week flew by so fast! Im surprised cause we havnt been able to teach anyone. We have just been focusing on less active members and our 3 recent converts. Ralph received the Arronic priesthood yesterday! That's two
weeks in a row that we have had a recent convert receive the priesthood. Greg is planning on passing the sacrament next week. This is starting to remind me of Many where we had both Larry Austin and Jeremy both passing the sacrament! Such a sweet feeling to see them exercise their priesthood.

 As in I've stepped back and looked at what things I can do to help my companion, I was able to just love him and serve him instead of trying to make him do things. Sometimes that's what it takes. I've been studying a lot about how the Savior taught and dealt with people. He didn't force people or tell them direct orders. He loved them and led by example through humility and obedience. I've learned a lot and was humbled once again. 

But we did have a fun 4th of July! The four missionaries and Sister Gore put on a branch activity. We worked really hard to make it a fun activity where people could bring their friends! We of course BBQ'd, but also had volleyball, wiffleball, badmitton, a waterslide, even karaoke! It was a blast. We had a great turn out. Nearly 60 people came! I wish they would all come to church! But that's another topic for another time."

"Gosh time is flying by. Today is my 8 month mark! But this week was good kinda crazy, but good. So to start off we did not get hit by the tropical storm "Debbie" President Wall called us last week and told us to be ready to evacuate to Baton Rouge if necessary. But another minor disaster happened here in Morgan City this week. One of the transformers for the power companies blew up! It caught on fire along with the back up generator and who knows what else! So we were out of power for about 2 days! We were actually driving by when it started to catch on fire and I got a video of it! hah But we stayed with President Albert for 2 days due to the no electricity thing. It
was way fun! We went fishing off his dock, His back yard runs up to the Bayou! Not to mention we ate like Kings while we were there! I love their family. They are Samoan and are so much fun to be around. Another cool thing that happened this week is I finished my first Journal! Yes me, "Carter-who hates to write in a journal-Bailey" completed my first journal. I realized I didn't want to forget all the fun and amazing times I've experienced on my mission.
But as for the missionary work goes... None of our investigators came to church! The only 3 we have are kinda at a stand still right now. But, we are trying to work hard with them along with finding new ones as well! But even with no investigators at church, we had all 3 of our recent converts there! Greg, Ralph and Catherine! It was so sweet! Greg and Ralph bore two of the best testimonies I've heard. Ralph's was literally... "I know that this is Jesus Christ's restored gospel, it has truly changed my life." and then sat down. It was so sweet!  Greg also received the priesthood today and Ralph will receive it next week. After Greg was ordained (given the priesthood), He shook everyone's hand and then Ralph stood up and gave him a big ole hug! Catherine is working with president Jordan to get ready to go do baptisms. I was so happy to see her at church! So our 3 recent converts are really becoming strong members of the branch!"