Written 10 July 2016
Hellooooo, everyone! Welcome to the 58th installment of... Elder Adams' weekly emails! I'm pretty sure that number is somewhere in the right ballpark. Those of you who like mindless accounting, feel free to tell me if I'm wrong. (note from Editor Dad: Not bad, it's only 1 week off.) Elder West and I are still livin' it up here in The Dalles, OR! I'm not sure how much longer this can last, though. It's kind of like Camelot. Great things have to end so other great things can start. If I do end up leaving, I will be a very sad missionary indeed. I'll be excited for the future, but we all sometimes mourn for the good that is left behind.
This last week was a good week. We found 3 amazing new people: George, Fransisco, and Ofelia! That's to explain the title. George is great. His mom's name is Yanet, and she's been going through a hard time. When we found Yanet, she was crying while sitting outside. As we talked, she told us that she had been studying with "los Testigos" (Testigos de Jehova, Witnesses, Jehovah's Witnesses, or "J-Dubs" for short). She had had some family troubles recently, and was really touched by the little we shared about the Plan of Salvation. She took a copy of the Book of Mormon, and said she would read it.
We then went by a little later, and a young man opened the door. His name was George. When we asked about Yanet, he told us that she (his mom) had been unable to sleep for 5 days, and so his dad had just barely taken her to the hospital before we showed up. We shared about how the Gospel, which is restored, blesses families, and gave him his own Book of Mormon. He was really attentive, and even though he was shy and didn't want to, said an amazing prayer at the end!
Later, out of the blue, we decided to randomly call some people who had studied with missionaries in the past, but got too busy. Their names are Ofelia and Juan Carlos. When we called, Ofelia answered the phone! She was super excited that we had contacted her, but was very sad to tell us she had moved. Darn! Well, when we asked her where, she told us she had moved all the way to... Goldendale. Pshht. That's a non-issue if ever I saw one. Anyway, we set up an appointment tomorrow, and we're going to Goldendale! Separately, the sisters up in Goldendale got a message from one of our members, telling them about a good friend who had moved to Goldendale, but had just excitedly told the member that somebody from the church contacted her. The member, Sister Mullins, was really excited! She told the sisters that her friend didn't speak the best English, but that she had to be contacted by missionaries as soon as possible. The sister missionaries then excitedly called us, letting us know that an amazing Spanish speaker had been found in Goldendale! We started getting amazed that so many Spanish-speaking people in Goldendale were suddenly asking for missionaries, and with a little further probing, we discovered that it was... yep, you guessed it: Ofelia. So she's really excited!
Finally, there's Fransisco. He's nice. A member from our ward asked us to talk to him, because they've worked together for years. We taught him and now he's investigating the Gospel.
That's pretty much it. Not too much else is going on. Noe and Maria are still busy, and so is Rosalva. Actually, funny thing: Even though we were teaching them completely separately, Rosalva and Maria are best friends. They carpool together to work, and Maria invites Rosalva to read the Book of Mormon and come to church all the time. It's a pretty amazing thing! If only the cherry harvest didn't suck, vampirically, the life out of people. Ah, well. At least it doesn't last all year.
That's all for now! Love you! Bye!
Questions from Editor Mom:
Wie gehts? - Fantastisch, danke! (This is German: "How are you?" "Fantastic, thanks!")
Anything fun planned for today? - Not really, no. I honestly have no idea what the plans are today. We were going to learn how to whittle cool things, but that got postponed. I guess we'll find out!
Did you know there is a Stonehenge Memorial in Goldendale that might be interesting to visit? - Yes, I actually do know about that! It's not actually in Goldendale, but about halfway between Goldendale and The Dalles. Perhaps we'll go, if we can find the time.
Any news on Jamie or your other investigators? - Well, not really. There's not any news on the people you know about. We've got some cool new potentials and investigators, though! I'll update you in my main letter.
What do you do to lift yourself up when you feel sad or disappointed? - If I ever catch myself thinking something negative, I have a rule that I have to actually say something positive, preferably about that thing.
How long does Elder Wood have left in his mission? - Elder West has about 5 months left.
I don't want you to spend a lot of time thinking about this, but just a check-up, because I will have to start helping you deal with it soon enough: Are you still inclined to go back to BU when you get home, or are you considering other options? - I still plan on returning to BU. Great music program, great singles ward, really great teachers. (I won't even mention the food options.)
Also, are you still inclined to want to live in a dorm at BU? - Hmm, I hadn't thought about that one much. I had sort of assumed so, but it was a tad cramped.
Anything in particular you wish you could talk to us about or share with us? - I don't think there's anything at the moment, other than standard (or, as you would say, "mundane") things. :-D I do love you a ton, though!
Pictures of messing around with a flashlight and long-exposure camera shots
Need I say more?
Other PicturesThe following are from the Mission President's visit to The Dalles on Saturday, July 8 for missionary interviews.
Elder Adams and Elder West welcomed us!
(The missionaries were apparently all asked what they loved about their assigned area.)
Elder West: I love the free fruit (cherries and nectarines are my favorites). I love crashing Mexican parties. I love the general feeling of small town agricultural culture here, and the felling up north of adventure and “untamed wilds.”
Elder Adams: I love how friendly and sincere the people here are. I love the delicious fruit. I love the Columbia River, giving life and beauty to this place.
The following are from the Mission President's visit on Sundaty, July 9 to visit church in The Dalles.
Church meetings were great! Afterwards these Elders were in the Family History Library (where they email on Mondays). They were preparing reports.