Thank you for the email this past week! Thank you for the birthday box and Thank you for being great examples of living the gospel!
This week has been pretty darn fun. The bad new first though, Elder Hegland is getting transferred tomorrow and I am going to get a new companion that won't be Elder Hegland. Whoever he is, he will be great. If he is not then I'll whip him into shape! I rebuked some missionaries last night because they didn't meet their contacting goal that they set as a district. I told them I was going to rebuke them and then I asked them how I did at the end, so it turned out to be productive. In district meeting I literally told them if they didn't get the goal then I would call them and rebuke them Sunday night, so they weren't suprized.
More good news:
On Tuesday we took some Elders out to an all-you-can-eat sushi place!! We talked about the progress of the Laguna Hills 2nd ward over 200+ rolls of sushi!
More good news:
We got to garden 3 times this week! We dug up bushes, did weeding and resurfaced a driveway! We got to wear jeans!
More good news:
We got Laguna Beach Cross Country T-shirts and sweatshirts from the coach, who is investigating!
More good news:
2 Stories -
This week Elder Hegland was pretty sick, but he fought through it. On Saturday we got a keyboard and hymnbooks from the church and went out onto the Pacific Coast highway in Laguna Beach, cleared out the homeless people and did a little concert. We did some hymns, a little piano arrangement and Hallelujah. Some people stopped and listened, but no real interest in learning aboutwhat we had to share. We had a grand old time though. Later that night we taught Tyler, our investigator, and he had 3 of his friends over so we taught them the first lesson and two of them came to church yesterday! They are considering baptism and so they are going to be fun to work with.
Sunday - We had an early meeting (Elder Hegland woke me up at 5am by banging on my bed and telling me that it was my birthday!) then we made it to church long enough to take the sacrament and then we swung by the local Christian church that we told someone we would go to. Her name was Maddie and she came to our church last week. Then we went back for the end of our church. Then we went out and visited people, had dinner and then went to the Methodist church for an inter-faith Thanksgiving celebration. The mission choir sang. It was fun.
More good news:
Alma 26:37 (I think it is 37...) Anyways there was a great misionary named Ammon and he gave thanks unto God for showing mercy unto all of the people in the world. God knows all of us wherever we are or whoever we are. It has been repeatedly impressed upon me that all of us are spirit children of a loving heavenly Father who knows us and watches over us. It is important for us all to engage in meaningful conversations about the things that matter most, in this life in in the eternities. I used to not like real serious discussions, but my spirit longs for them now. Although, I can't get enough of a good laugh either. I am grateful to be a missionary and grateful that I can serve my brothers and sisters here in Laguna Beach.
This week has been nice! I have been out of Laguna Beach a few times on exchanges with other missionaries. Some people get homesick, but I get elderheglandsick when I am away for too long. #companionseperationanxiety
That hashtag is for K.
Armando hasn't been able to get work off until December, so he will be baptized in December. Charles is going to have the choice to accept a baptismal date this week when we meet with him. He is a very curious and spiritual man. Tyler is chugging along and I always appreciate being able to go over there and have some very real conversations with him about our Savior. They should all be at church this week or next.
A few highlights(once again I can only really remember a day or two back):
Sunday morning the choir performed again, so Elder Hegland went to the Laguna Beach ward while I went and accompanied the choir in a different ward. It went pretty well. No one got baptized because of it yet, but we are still fine tuning how to make this choir effective as a finding, teaching and baptizing tool for the California, Irvine Mission. We have bi-weekly choir council meetings which I participate in and we don't want this choir to be a time-waster or anything less than the professional quality that should accompany the sacredness of it participant's calling. Basically it needs to be good and it needs to be effective. enough about the choir.
This week we talked to a few people and two young women said that they would come to our church and learn more if we would go to their church. So we said absolutely! Then they actually came. I was at the choir performance, but Elder Hegland confirmed that they came, so on my birthday I get to go to another church!
Last night we had a lesson with a family that got baptized earlier this year. So there is the single mom and two little girls. They are from Latvia. Think of Gru from Despicable me and that's the accent. Lona is blonde and 5 years old. we met outside. They have 2 fiesty dogs that want to get out of the house and get eaten by coyotes because they don't know better. Lona was in charge of keeping the dogs behind the gate. On accident Lona left the gate open a little bit and the dogs almost got out. Lona quickly shut the gate, turned around and sang: "Who let the dogs out? Hoo! Hoohoo, hoohoo!" We all laughed a lot. That family is one of my all-time favorites!
I will close with a thought this week from President Monson: I reread a few conference talks to make sure I am applying the spiritual impressions I had during conference and a line of his stood out to me from one of his talks. He mentioned the idea of the "distorted prism of pessimism". For some reason I really liked that. We can not look at life as something bad, or that is what it will become. We should choose to be happy and hold on to our hope for the eternal lito come even when trials come our way. I am so inspired by this work that I get to participate in and I am saddened when missionaries do not find joy in the work. I blame it on the adversary's use of his "distorted prism of pessimism". Let us use our agency to think good, act good and be good. Pardon my grammar and have a lovely week!
Happy day after Veteran's day, or as the Canadians say "Rememberance Day" eh. We have a Canadian in our zone and he plays the organ for the mission choir so we have fun with him.
Thanks for the email this week. Answer:
the 20 woman breakfast was just a little get together that a member of the ward had with a few members and a lot of non-members who are friends in the community. Nothing formal, jsut a breakfast.
I am sorry to report that I have not taken pictures in 5 weeks. whoops. I will do better this week. There are some sweet sunsets #lagunabeach.
Kennedy put a lot of #hashtags in that family letter. She is a very different young woman then the little girl sister that was at home when I left for college!
Highlights this week.
#1 today Elder Hegland and I had a nice little meeting with the missionaries in the stake and trained on planning and applying the Atonement. Some of the missionaries are getting really down on themselves, so our intent was to lift, instruct, edify and inspire them. I love our missionaries.
#2Sunday night we had our first mission choir performance and I was going to play the organ for our closing number (I have never played the organ before), but lucklily our Canadian friend was prepared with his arrangment for the last song. So it turned out alright.
#3 I gave a talk on Sunday to the ward. There were 17 nonmembers there that we were aware of and I spoke about how the gospel can be real, and should be real in our lives. I talked about how any time I had/have hard feelings the gospel can transform them into love and motivate me to serve and be better.
#4 I forget what happened before Sunday. Sorry. Life goes on. you got 2 days worth of highlights this week. It was a good week.
Well we are going to go teach Tyler, and Armando tonight and then Charlestomorrow, so as much as I enjoy typing an email, I would honestly rather be teaching the gospel. Not that I don't love you too....
Thank you for the nice email this week! I love hearing about the happenings of your life. Elder Hegland and I had a great week and we are incredibly happy and busy. I feel like I am just in the zone now and I don't think about much besides missionary work. But I am not bored even though there is only one purpose consuming my life!!!!!
I wrote down 5 things that happened this week. so here is your 5 paragraph letter :-)
1) We went on a 6 mile run with our ward mission leader this morning in the mountains. So fun!
2) On Halloween we drove around to each missionary in the zone a doorbell ditched their favorite treat on their doorstep.
3) Saturday we had a breakfast with 20 women and we made them eggs and pancakes.
4) Tyler Fisher (our autistic investigator) bore his testimony on Sunday.
5) We met a woman who referred herself to the church because she saw the great example of members of the church in her life. She accepted to be baptized on November 30! yay, except she texted us this morning and said that she decided over the weekend that "the Mormon path" was not the one for her. Darn Satan.
Well, I love life and this work is so great. We have lots going on. Talk to you next week!
I have met so many great people this week! The pink power ranger, a holocaust survivor, Beth Garlock, and Armando to name a few.
I am really happy here in Laguna Beach and Elder Hegland and I are having a mighty fine time. I feel really bad that I don't remember much of what we did this week and Elder Shiu still has my camera, so I don't have pictures yet.
Thank you for your email about gratitude. That is something that we all can continuously work on.
Ummmmm, please see Dad's email for an update on the people I am teaching... I am sorry about that this week. I promise at least 5 real paragraphs next week.