Friday, July 27, 2012

July 23, 2012

Hey!!

So we had a pretty good week here. Nothing too exciting happened or anything. Elder Tietjen is doing great for a new missionary. I barely have to teach him anything; he already has most of it down. One funny thing about training that I didn't really think about is that he has all the news from the outside world. So now I am more up to date on what is happening in the secular world. It is weird to think of all the stuff I don't know about anymore.

We started teaching a kid named Angel who is 16 and plays basketball on the local high school team. He accepted baptism on the 2nd lesson and now we just need to help him come to church. He is awesome and is keeping commitments and reading the Book of Mormon. It is cool how many youth we are teaching. They are way more open to the gospel message it seems for the most part.

At the beginning of the month we are going to be having a really cool fireside. We are going to have some recent converts share their conversion experience and testimony and then our mission president is going to be speaking about the restoration with some mingle and refreshments following. It is something that I have been wanting to do for awhile and this ward very quickly jumped on the bandwagon. At our dinner appointments people are committing to bring friends and it should be a great way to be introduced to new investigators.

One funny story is that the ASL sisters were tracting in our area and they called us to refer some people that they found. They told me about this 14 year old girl named Jackie who we should go visit. I was a little weirded out that they were teaching someone so young but they said she was super interested. So we stopped by and knocked a couple of times and didn't get an answer. Then as we were about to walk away they opened and said their parents told them not to answer the door for strangers but they knew it was us and they wanted us to come back when their parents were home. We told them to check with their parents and make sure it was ok if we came and taught their family. So we stopped by again a couple of nights later and the whole family was watching TV together in the dark with the door open. It is always a little tricky when the door is already open. We knock and poke our heads in and the whole family is kinda just like what the? We are like, is Jacky here? But after the shock, Jacky jumps up and says come on in come on in. So we hesitantly come in and they turn the lights on. Half the family scatters to the rooms and we sit down kinda awkwardly. The parents only speak Spanish so we kinda motion to make sure it is alright that we are there. We start teaching the first lesson and Jackie is just smiling so big the whole time. And the only time she wasn't smiling was during the first vision when her smile kinda just becomes a stunned face. Everyone was just getting slapped by the Spirit. The older daughter is translating for the mom who is standing in the room. We have the older daughter close with a prayer and then explained that we would send the Spanish elders by. So then on our drive home who rides by but the Spanish elders on their bicycles. I guess Heavenly Father really wanted us to pass that family over quickly. haha. It was a fun lesson to teach.

I love you all,

Elder Arnold

July 16, 2012

Hey!

So my new companion is named Elder Tietjen(pronounced Tee-jen). It is kind of a mouthful the way it looks but pretty easy to say. He is from a suburb outside of Dallas, Texas called Southlake. He went to BYU this last year and is 19. He is really into classic cars and was restoring a 71 Chevy pickup before he came out. Believe me that I am getting a car education as we drive around. haha.

He is doing super good for only having been out a little while. I don't think I would be able to tell that he is a greenie if I didn't know. One good experience we had this week was during his first day out he got a call from President Bowen informing him that his grandpa had passed away. He was pretty down about it considering he was still in culture shock and now this on top of it. We were in the apartment because I had to prepare for District meeting. So we got up and left and went out to work. I gave him a map of our area and let him pray where we should go knock at. So we drove to that street and on the 3rd door an older man let us in to teach him. His wife had just died a couple of months earlier and so it was perfect. Who knows if anything will come from it but it picked both of us up and let us know that the Lord is directing his work.

Everything is good! I love being a missionary and serving the Lord!

Elder Arnold
July 9, 2012

What's up!

So we just had transfers and Elder Munguia got transferred to Santa Ana to be in the Spanish program now. He is excited to be in Spanish but maybe a little hesitant about the area and all new people and such. So it turns out that I will be training a new missionary again. This time I am a little bit less nervous because I kinda know what I am doing. It should be pretty fun to show a new missionary the ropes. Hopefully I can do an even better job. So I will pick him up from the mission home tomorrow afternoon. I bet he is super nervous/excited in the MTC right now. I remember that feeling.

This last week was pretty awesome. We had a bunch of investigators come to the 4th of July breakfast. Most of the Gutierrez family came which is good. Sam might even go on a weeklong campout with the boy scouts next week. That family is doing super good.

After district meeting we all went and picked up food and met at President's house. We rolled the ping pong table out of the garage and so I got to play my favorite game. So fun! President even brought us all some ice cream from his freezer.

I can't really think of anything else.

Love,
Elder Arnold
July 2, 2012
Hello from Anaheim!

Pretty awesome week! I will hit some of the highlights for everybody.

On Thursday we had district meeting on finding by visiting former investigators. So we talked all about how that is a great resource to find people to teach. Then that night we went and visited a less active lady who is really nice and funny. We had helped her come to church last week. So the cool thing is that she is really good friends with a mother and daughter who haven't been coming to church. The daughter is 10 and used to be taught by missionaries a year ago. So both of those 2 were over at her house and we were able to talk to them even more. And then the next door neighbors had been taught by sister missionaries a couple years previously and the kids were outside playing basketball. We started talking to them and we ended up playing with them. They invited us back the next day to play with them a little bit more which after checking with the parents we decided to. So the next day we went and played a little bit more basketball with them. We are going to have them come to the pancake breakfast on Wednesday for the 4th of July and we will see what happens. It was cool to contact 2 former investigators that very day. haha. So the 2 kids we played ball with are 13 and 10. Bailey is 13 and he is shorter than his 10 year old sister Avery so they are on the short side so they called me a giant playing basketball with them. It wasn't really fair but still very fun.

We started teaching a girl named Alicia this week. She is the girlfriend of the son of a family that we visit once a week. They are the Cruz family. Noel and Emma always feed us this really good Philippines (however you spell that) food. So we were asking Noel one day, while Alicia was in watching TV, if she would be interested in the church. She overheard us talking about her and talked to Noel about it later. And so he told her and she said that she is interested. So we taught the 1st lesson on Sunday and it went good. She is very open to learning and already has a testimony of prayer.

We are teaching Ozzie and his mom again tonight so hopefully that goes well. We taught the Gutierrez family again this last week and it was awesome. They came to church and are coming to the 4th of July pancake breakfast. The work is progressing really well as the Lord directs it. 

Love,
Elder Arnold

June 25, 2012

Hey!

So we had a fantastic week. We are working with lots of people and the work is progressing really well. I love being able to sit in people's homes and teach the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are starting to teach a kid who has been going to scouts with the ward since he was 8 and he is now 14. He told his mom that he didn't want to be catholic anymore but he feels that he is a Mormon. So we set up an appointment with the mom because she wanted to hear what the church is about. We went over and the grandparents also sat in on the lesson. The grandparents only spoke Spanish so Elder Munguia taught the whole lesson. It was his first lesson in Spanish and he was pretty excited.  I bore my testimony a couple of times and he would translate for me.  It went super good. The next night we taught Ozzie the boy and he loved it and accepted baptism. We will see how it progresses from here.

I was the last speaker in sacrament meeting yesterday. There was a high priest in the ward who talked before me and he used to be a professor so he droned on and on. So I got relegated to the role of a youth speaker oh well I still feel pretty youthful. In my talk I related the story of mom's conversion and the ripple effect of missionary work in our family. I shared some simple ways that we can share the gospel. Like tell people that they look like they would be a good Mormon. Ask if they are Mormon and they will usually say no but I know so and so who is and then you can have a gospel conversation. It went pretty good. The other cool thing was that I was able to get quite a few people who haven't come to church in a while to come to hear me speak. So that was good.

The stone cut without hands rolls on!

Love,
Elder Arnold