March 7, 2016
Monday, Day 146
Day 133 in NY
After district meeting. Elder Davis and I split with Elder Casper and Elder Clark. Elder Clark is the new missionary in our district. He's from Idaho. Elder Clark and I were together and Elder Davis was with Elder Casper in the Co-op city area. Before we split up and went to our areas, we all went over to Cross Bronx Pizza and grabbed a slice, since Elder Clark hadn't been yet. We talked with Joe for a bit while he made our pizza. Joes super awesome, he's been working there over 20 years. I think he likes the missionaries; he's always giving me little discounts on my pizza. About 10 minutes later we grabbed our pizza and headed back to the church, we ate and then we went back to our areas.
BEGINNING TO END:
When we got back to our area, Elder Clark and I started 12 weeks. Around 4PM we left and went to go see one of our investigators from a while ago, Nelson Gomez. We haven't met with him for a while, because the last time we did we sent him over to the Spanish missionaries since he seems to understand more Spanish. One of Nelsons employees, Will, was at the train station the other day and ran into our sister missionaries. They showed him a couple videos and that was that, they got his name and where he works. So when they told us that they met Will, I was pumped cause I already knew him from teaching Nelson. When we got to Hunts Point and checked on Nelson, we saw Will riding around on a hover board out on the street. Before we left, I yelled out "Aye Will, come 'ere!" He rides into the garage right next to me and he hops off and stands between Elder Davis and I with Nelson on my left. I pulled out my iPad and my speaker and played the Mormon message "Daily Bread: Pattern". It's an awesome video that tells us that our body needs sustenance, such as food and water to make ourselves well. But our soul also needs sustenance, such as spiritual readings and Church. As our bodies are starved or dehydrated we desire sustenance to fill those feelings of absence. The same goes for our spirit, when we have withdrawn ourselves from regular doses of spirituality we become weak spiritually. Our spirit is starved and it too desires to be filled of its absence. After the video we invited them to take care of themselves to feed their bodies and souls.
When we left we headed back to the 6 train from Hunts Point, uptown to 149th St. From there we walked to this lady's home. The lady's name is Marissa. She was a referral we received from another set of missionaries from Florida. The missionaries in Florida had been teaching her and her family. They sent her information to us because she moved. When we looked her up she was home with her 2 little boys. She's a married woman, they have a 7 year old boy, a 2 year old boy, and one on the way.
That was an awesome conversation starter because I immediately thought of Courtney and was just like, oh how awesome! Congratulations! My Sister is pregnant also! It's crazy because when I get home her baby girl will be about a year and half. She was like wow! That is crazy! So that was a fun conversation, her kid was at the door too and just loved talking to me too, asking questions and throwing out random sentences to get my attention on him haha. Hope to get back over there soon.
This split was a miracle day. Elder Clark has been out in the mission field 1 week and he had only 4 lessons taught in his area, that whole week... So when he came with me to my area I took him out and we went and taught 5 lessons in a day. The whole time he was like "holy cow! We taught more lessons in a day then I've taught in a week!" It was a great experience for the both of us, I was so grateful to have been able to share that experience with him.
March 8, 2016
Tuesday, Day 147
Day 134 in NY
Not always but every now and then, when we go to see Ricky he tells me about what my family has been doing all week. He's on Facebook a lot I guess so he sees what everyone's doing and he gives me an update! Haha I love it! He will tell me about it as if he was just on the phone with them it's great! It's almost like he's apart of the family and just knows what's going on.
MEETING UP... ON A TUESDAY:
Since our ward mission leader is going to Washington, he won't be here on Thursday for our regular correlation meeting so we had an early one today. And instead of having it in the morning we had it around 2:30 PM... I don't know what happened to us that day, but it was as if we walked into a room of laughing gas… (I am not a morning person, so usually in the morning at 10:30, when we have our meeting, I don't say much. But I guess since I was already awake and it was the middle of the day, we all were just having too good of a time! Jokes were told and things that weren't even funny were said and we were all laughing!
So we met the sister of one of our investigators earlier last week. We met briefly and I didn't even catch her name. But we went to go look this investigator up and her sister answered the door, we had a nice quick "reunion" if you want to call it that and we introduced ourselves fully this time. We asked about her religious background and she said that she wouldn't mind meeting with us. We got her number and we told her we would send daily scriptures to her. Before we left we showed her a Mormon message-Daily bread: Pattern. She liked it and we tried to set up a next appointment, she told us that she's not always there because she works and what not... But we told her we would stay in contact to let her know when we plan on stopping by to see her sister, so she could plan on being there. That makes a potential investigator, but we will see if it becomes a real interest of hers.
There's this lady Elder Tabor and I met a little while back, she was a referral from a member in another stake somewhere. She had been and still is, in and out of the hospital daily going through her chemotherapy. Every now and then we would stop by to see if she's home, more often then not she wouldn't be but the times that she was home she was exhausted from her treatments, and we could see her exhaustion, so we always made her aware of the time that we wanted to take from her. We would let her know that we understand she's going through a lot and that we don't want to take much time but that we just want to share something with her that we know will be uplifting and every time…
Every time, she is much happier then she was when she first opened the door. No matter how exhausted she may be, since the first time we stopped by she has always allowed us to take a few minutes to testify of our Savior and she's never turned us away. She is just the sweetest, she always tells us how much she really appreciates us coming by, calling her during the week to check on her,
and sharing uplifting messages with her. She's also in the process of trying to find a new apartment so we told her when she does we would be more than willing to load her trailer or U-haul. I know she sees the light of Christ when we visit her and she knows that we care about her.
March 9, 2016
Wednesday, Day 148
Day 135 in NY
After our studies, we go on with our day. We do laundry and in between loads we grocery shop. After a long day of chores and preparing ourselves for the week we began our evening with visiting Brother Ford.
This is one man you absolutely have to meet. One of my favorite things that he has said after saying something somewhat intelligent is "...Don't take my word for it, I'm nuts!" He is absolutely hilarious! He just says the funniest things! And the way he says things just makes everything so much better!
The father/husband of the Nation family. We stopped by to see if the Nation family was home. They hadn't been answering our phone calls or getting back to us. Since they don't live far from Brother Ford, we stopped by. Richard answered the door, when the door opened I noticed the huge blow up mattress in the living room, immediately we could tell they were busy with company staying the night. I guess they were babysitting again or something. Richard had told us they were busy, so we just asked for a few minutes of his time. We started asking them if they had been reading and praying as a family. He gave his usual answer, "well I can't speak for them, but I haven't been reading. I won't lie to you." It's a funny answer because he didn't answer our question directly. I mean obviously from his response, they aren't reading together. But he doesn't just flat out tell us. We hope that they soon recognize fully, the importance of our visits. We hope to see them progress someday soon.
At the end of the night like usual, we ended on visiting Ricky! I absolutely love Ricky! I mean, I'm not picking favorites, but I wish I had the same love that I have for Ricky, for every one else I meet and teach. Since the first day I met Ricky, I was so easily able to love him. I have sincere love for this man. He's become an uncle to me. Every night I leave his house I say "I love you Uncle Ricky." And he says, "I love you too, now watch your step out there." Uncle Ricky and I have some big plans for after my mission. We've been planning this for months! I believe that he's already been saving money weekly to afford our trip. But when I come home from my mission, I'm going to fly back out to NY or something, then Ricky and I will take our time driving back to California.
I don't remember when, but sometime in his life his leg was amputated... So he has a prosthetic right leg. Beside it being a trial itself, Ricky LOVED driving and with out a right leg he can't drive a regular car. He wants to take classes to be able to drive left footed. (I guess there are cars made for people with functional left feet, so the pedals are fixed to where the left foot can "comfortably" be used to push the brake and gas). Either that, or possibly having to get a car with a hand pedal for gassing. When Ricky was able to drive he told me about all the things he would do, the places he would go. He says that he would just fill up and drive and drive and drive. He just loved to get out and see places. I told him when I return from my mission I will take him places. So that's something we both look forward to. Driving from NYC to California, stopping along the way, seeing places we both haven't seen yet.
March 10, 2016
Thursday, Day 149
Day 136 in NY
This morning we received a text from an investigator we started meeting with again… Elder Tabor and I met him a while back, also a referral. He ordered a Bible, so we met him when we delivered it to him. His name is John, he's a junior in High school, and he claimed to be very interested.
Well the text we received said something like this; Hey Elders, my family and I would appreciate if you wouldn't come to our home anymore. We haven't felt the Holy Ghost and I don't want to become a Mormon any longer, we would just like it if you didn't come back.
Well I'm sure you’re feeling at least a little bit of the way I felt... It's not the greatest thing in the world when you receive a text like that from someone who really was interested and he claims to not have felt the spirit. Sadly, we believe that he and his family weren't actually reading from and praying about the Book of Mormon. We invited him to read and pray about the Book of Mormon and the last time we went to see him he told us he hadn't read the Book of Mormon. It's sad to see him drop us like this, but we've done what we could, and we just hope he finds interest in the church again.
GOTTA BE newBOLD:
It's become very clear to see that the only way to make it or break it with people is by being bold. If you’re short with them they have too much room to get lost in.
Elder Davis and I are in the process of clearing out our area book. We are calling people daily; members, less actives, potentials, progressing investigators, new investigators, and so on…
While we were on a split the other day, Elder Clark and I looked up this guy who ordered a Bible. Since we are out of Bibles... (Which I don't understand how) we've been giving out more Books of Mormon instead. So we got to this guys apartment, went up to his floor, knocked on the door, and this lady answers, opening the door just enough to see her. We asked if Melton was home. He heard us and said come on in; we came in, and went to his room where he sat in his wheel chair. We introduced ourselves and confirmed that he ordered a Bible, he said yes. So we talked about how he found the website Mormon.org he said he saw it as an ad somewhere. We told him we didn't have any Bibles at the moment but we introduced him to the Book of Mormon and he agreed to take it. We invited him to read it and we set up another time to come by. He said come by the same time next week. Today was that day; Elder Davis and I came by to see Melton. We knocked another lady answered the door and Melton was behind her in his wheelchair watching TV. Both Elder Davis and I could see very clearly what he was doing. Watching TV, he wasn't busy at all. But when he saw us he faced the door and said "come back later, I'm busy. Give me a call before you come." Now, I've heard this too many times, I know what that means... He wants us to leave because he's not interested and instead of telling us he's not interested he wants us to call ahead of time so he can give an excuse. I replied, "Okay, well, are you even interested at all? Because I don't want to waste your time and I don't want to waste our time." He simply replied "No... Not really." I said, "Okay thank you, have a blessed night!" And we went on with our night.
We get a lot of people like this, where they really only want a Bible or a Book of Mormon but they really aren't interested in having us come by. So instead of telling us that, they set appointments with us on days they aren't home. In this case Melton is confined to his wheelchair and home. So he's not going anywhere, so I knew we would be getting excuse after excuse from him and we have other people we could be teaching. So we set it straight by making sure he was interested or not. And that's how it's done!
Walking home from an appointment, we were stopped by a group of kids chill in out on the steps of an apartment building. "Are y'all customer service?" Elder Davis and I were like "naaa we are missionaries". So we stopped and talked for about 40 minutes with them. There were 6 kids, a 19-year-old girl (this girl had a kid in a stroller, and she was trying to get my number lol, I said you got my card it's on there). Then there was a 17-year-old girl who was pregnant with her 15-year-old boy friend. One of the other boys was 15 and their friend who was about 18. The whole time we were talking, they would ask questions all over the place. We told them who we are, where we are from, what we are doing. "No we don't get paid, we pay to do this." In between 3 different conversations Elder Davis and I were having with these kids, we just bore testimony on simple principles of the gospel. It was super great; they were calling us their homies. One of the kids was looking at the Jesus pass along cards we gave him and he asked "where do I get my free Finding Faith in Jesus Christ DVD." We told him we would bring it in a couple days. They were some pretty cool kids. A couple of the kids were siblings and their mom was not a religious person at all. She apparently hates "Jesus People" they say if she walked into a church it would burn down around her. Which is very extreme, that obviously wouldn't happen.
Received a call from Sister Gardner, a senior couple missionary. She called us later at night making us aware that because Elder Davis came 2 weeks late he missed the new missionary meeting. So she told us we would need to show up to Scarsdale for the meeting tomorrow morning.
March 11, 2016
Friday, Day 150
Day 137 in NY
NEW MISSIONARY MEETING:
Woke up at 4:30 and got ready quickly but quietly so that we don't wake the other Elders. We prayed at the door and left the apartment. We took the 6 train over to Harlem-125th station. We got there about 30 minutes early, so we got our tickets and waited in the station till about 5 minutes before our train arrived. Then we went up the stairs to the platform and got on the train and we took the "fancy train" to Scarsdale. From there we waited for the Office Elders to come by with the van and pick us up. When they got there, they then drove us to the Scarsdale Chapel, which is the church right behind the Mission Home.
While the New missionaries, "New" lol, Elder Davis at this point isn't so new; he's been out 6 weeks! (Man time has FLOWN by) so while the New missionaries have their Tiwi/Driving instructions, we, the trainers have a training from President, Sister Smith, and one of the APs. It was, as always, so awesome! President Smith was asking about miracles and one of the Elders raised his hand and shared an experience that him and his companion had. They did this thing called "prayer tracting". (So here in NY tracting isn't too affective, well at least in The Bronx it's not… So when we go to an appointment or after we go to look someone up, if they are home, perfect, after the lesson we go tract that apartment floor). The experience these two Elders had was one I'd never heard of. They had gone to look up an investigator and this investigator wasn't home. So they decided to prayer tract. They chose one of the doors on the floor and knocked on it. A college girl opened the door and they introduced themselves "Hi, we are the missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Could we have a prayer with you?" If you’re lucky, you'll get the response she gave, "yea sure." These two Elders asked her the question "what specifically could we pray for?" She responded, "well I'm in college and I have some tests coming up and I would like to do well on those." As one of these Elders prayed specifically to the needs of this young lady, she was touched. After the prayer they asked her "how do you feel?" She said, "I feel much better, I feel at peace with the tests coming up. Thank you". (Now keep in mind this is the first time they have met this girl). The Elder that had prayed for this girl, then sad this, "Will you follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone who holds the proper priesthood authority of God." The end of this story is unknown to me, but I believe that they did schedule another appointment to meet with her.
But how amazing is that?! To just simply take the time to understand the needs of someone and pray for them specifically, then directed by thee spirit to invite her to be baptized.
Well, the experience above inspired me so much I wanted to get a feel for it and try it. So after the meeting I told Elder Davis about it because he wasn't in that part of our meeting. I told him when we go to visit Loveth we will try it. So we stopped by Loveth’s and she was home so after seeing how she was doing and making arrangements to see her again, I asked her if we could have a prayer before we left. She agreed and I asked her what we could pray for, she responded with "I want to find peace in my marriage." So standing at the doorway, in the hall of the apartment floor. We bowed our heads and I began to pray, I personally felt good about it and when we were done she said that she felt good as well. (We had met with her a few times previous and she hasn't made any attempt to attended church and I didn't feel it right to invite her to be baptized but the experience was great).
March 12, 2016
Saturday, Day 151
Day 138 in NY
Last night we got a call from the Spanish Elders, they had a referral for us. They were out last night walking home and this guy approached them. I guess he's had some incidents in his life that has made him come to the realization he needs to find a church. So he started talking to them and the Spanish Elders said he was pretty legit. So we got ahold of him this morning, his name is Kenneth, and he said he desired to meet with us. So we met up with him and his wife. We hadn't met them before so we didn't know what they looked like. When we met them we were surprised to see that they were white. They currently live in a shelter, so we met at a McDonalds. We sat down, talked, and got to know them a bit. They did seem super legit, very interested. We talked about them coming to church and they agreed strongly, we showed them routes to get to church and we had it all planned out. They said that they would see us at church tomorrow. We shared the Book of Mormon with them and gave them a copy. We invited them to read and pray about it. Then we ended our discussion in a prayer and left.
The rest of our evening was good, we went and looked up some people and taught a few more lessons!
March 13, 2016
Sunday, Day 152
Day 139 in NY
Went to church and as always it was great! After church Brother Ford asked if we could go with him to his home teaching appointment. So we went with him and shared the New Easter video #Hallelujah.
#Hallelujah Look it up!!! Watch it. Share it. Share it. & Share it! Go on Mormon.org or look it up on the Gospel Library app.
March 14, 2016
Monday, Day 153
Day 140 in NY
While I was in the Spanish program for two weeks I met this member family and they love the missionaries. So walking on the street the other day they stopped Elder Davis and I, why we hadn't visited them. We told her we hadn't scheduled anything, so she told us to come over for dinner with the Spanish Elders! So we did we went over at 7:30 and waited for the Spanish Elders. While we were waiting, for the first time ever... Someone who wanted to talk to me like I was nothing actually did it to my face.
People in the Bronx have no courage, in all honesty, MOST of the time the people are under the influence of something. And when they are, they go off about unimportant things that they believe are very important. Well, I've had multiple experiences where people have wanted to say something to me. But instead of speaking to me face to face, which I so strongly prefer. They talk to my companion to tell me whatever it is, they go on a rant about.
So this lady comes out of the elevator cussing up a storm about how she lost her money and her weed. Her friends next to her said "yo, shut up, there are missionaries behind you. They don't want to hear about your problems." The lady then went off about how she doesn't give a dang and this and
that. So I reached out and gave her friend a Jesus pass along card. Well the lady in a bad mood didn't like that. (So you have to know that everyone I'm around is black. Even my companion, so it's actually really weird talking to white people when you see them because it's rare). As this lady sees the picture of Jesus she just starts screaming about how Jesus is black, and to my companion she says "don't let him (pointing at me) fool you, Jesus is your color not his. I simply said, "Have you seen Jesus?" She honestly replied "no". I said, "then how do you know what color he is?" (Obviously she's racist and didn't want to say anything nice to me. Which is fine with me). She said, "It's a fact! That's how I know!" I told her, it's not a fact, and I went on to say that "Jesus was a Jew and the Jews were darker then me but they were lighter than you." Of course then my companion backed me up, Elder Davis is black and he doesn't believe in a black Jesus, so he went on to explain some more. Then her attitude was sweet to him, but with me haha! She had nothing good to say the whole time. So I'm getting yelled at, I'm being told that I can't be calling my self an Elder because I don't know anything. Ya-da-ya-da. Blah- blah- blah. After we made our points, we just explained that our purpose as missionaries is just to invite others to follow Christ; we aren't here to teach deep doctrine or to teach people about the color of Jesus Christ. Because at the end of the day, it doesn't matter what color Jesus is, he's our Savior and if we love him for who he is and what he has done, it doesn't matter what his skin color is. He could be purple for all I care. Jesus Christ is my Savior and has died for me and for you.
What a night that was. I mean besides the points she was trying to make, weren't valid whatsoever, she was drinking her alcohol from the party she just stepped out of and wasn't at all straight in the mind. Elder Davis and I were trying our best the whole time to keep our chill, but at the same time Elder Davis is busting up laughing! Lol
March 15, 2016
Tuesday, Day 154
Day 141 in NY
Like I mentioned before we have been trying to clean up our area book. So we have been calling investigators and less actives. Well, we decided today we were going to look up this less active, named Isael. When we got to his door and knocked, he opened up, we introduced our selves and told him we were kind of new to the area and just wanted to get to know the members. He then let us in and he began to tell us about how he got into the church and how he decided to be baptized. Which were some pretty cool stories. He told us he wasn't too sure why he stopped coming to church. But he did say, because he hasn't come in so long he would feel embarrassed to show up because he's afraid of what the members will say. We told him that the members would welcome him like he never left. He felt comforted by that and told us he wants to come to church. We told him we could come by and get him on Sunday morning before church and go with him since he's shy. As we talked about all the people and members he remembers, we feel that once he comes on Sunday he will be able to come to church on his own, often with out us. We may have found us a solid reactivation! We are super stoked to have someone so solid want to come back to church.
Well that's it for this week! Hope that's entertaining enough for you all! I don't like reading so I'm glad I have big fans that will read for me and correct my spelling or grammar errors! Love you mom and dad, haha.
Love you all. The Gospel has been restored and our Savior lives! #HALLELUJAH #FINDNEWLIFE #MORMON.ORG
Till next week!
Patience. Love. Faith
|Elder Newbold and Elder Davis|
|Standing on a rooftop|
|New Missionary training for Elder Davis|