Monday, March 31, 2014

Members are the Key

Hello Everyone,

This has been quite the week. On Monday, we played ultimate frisbee with a family from the ward for P-Day. I am certainly not an all star ultimate frisbee player, but it seemed to work out when we were playing with younger kids haha! It was pretty fun. My companion was dying the whole time, physical activity is not his thing even though he is the one that wanted to play ultimate frisbee with the family. In the evening we went out joint teaching with a brother who has just hours before returned back from a business trip to Dubai. That is dedication! I don't know if I would ever come back if I had the opportunity to go to Dubai in the winter ;) He went from 80 degree weather to 15 degree weather in a matter of hours. Yikes! While we were out joint teaching, we stopped by an investigator. Her husband has been taking the missionary lessons from the the senior couple for quite some time now. We realized that their phone numbers on the ward directory were wrong, so we stopped by to get their updated information, and share a quick message with their family. West African people are incredible! They are so kind and hospitable to everyone, and are so open to new ideas and teachings even if they don't always completely agree. The investigator had a baptismal date a few months ago, but it didn't work out. Hopefully he will be able to be baptized before the senior couple goes home in May! After our meeting with the our investigator, we headed over to North Minneapolis to do a few stop by's. On the way over, our joint teach was pulled over by a police officer for running a red light. We all were fairly certain that he hadn't run a red light, but the officer proceeded to check all of his information. He said that he reviewed the video footage, and said that he did run a red light, but that he was just going to give him a warning. Likely story! He reviewed the video footage, and realized that the light was still yellow, but no ticket none the less. We stopped by a few less-active members, and finished off the night.

On Tuesday, we had to walk over to the CVS near our apartment. The medical coordinator for our mission had me pick up some weird lotions and potions for these weird rashes I have been getting. In 10 days if they don't clear up, I will need to see a dermatologist. She thinks it might be an allergic reaction, but we will see. As we were walking over to CVS, a woman drove by, honked her horn, looked me in the eyes and blew me a kiss. People are great haha! It kind of made my day, because I thought it was totally hilarious. My Companion didn't exactly share my same feelings, but it all works out ;) Tuesday night we had dinner with a family, and went joint teaching with him. We visited with our newly baptized investigator, and got to meet her new puppy, Dr. Dre. I am a firm believer that EVERYONE should probably own a dog at some point in their lifetime, but when you are not doing so hot financially, it is probably not the best time to invest in a cute little puppy. But, to each his/her own! I still love little puppies :) We talked about the Plan of Salvation, and invited her to attend the General Womens Meeting, as well as General Conference the next week. This is an exciting time!

On Wednesday, I went on exchange with an elder from Montana. He served in the area right before I got there, so it was fun to be able to talk about the area and everything with him. We were going to his area for the exchange, but this time we were biking. The elder has a cool speed and mile counter device on his bike, and he figured out that on our exchange we biked 30 miles. No bueno! Our legs were killing by the end of the night, and I had some not so nice thoughts each time I saw the rolling hills of the city. I enjoy biking down them, but biking up them is a whole other experience. It was a good exchange though, and I always enjoy being able to go to Downtown Minneapolis! I feel like Alicia Keys should make a version of her song "New York" yep... totally not called that... I think it is something like, well actually I'm not sure but I can sing it for you haha... "In New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of," etc... for Minneapolis!

On Thursday, we had our weekly District Meeting, but this time President Clements came to our meeting! The senior couple drove us down to the District Meeting, and then I had to use my super speedy changing skills from ballroom to change into my suit and everything, because when you bike to an exchange there is no room for all of that stuff. But it is always fun to be able to meet with, and hear from President Clements, so it was well worth it. He gave us a training on boldness, and understanding and utilizing the power and authority of our calling. It was a really great training! Afterwards, we went over to do our weekly service. I again was in the refrigerator for most of the time. They must really think that I enjoy the cold! They probably laugh each time I go to grab my jacket before I go work in the fridge. It is dang cold though! After our service, we went out joint teaching. Our joint teach had a list of prospective Elders and Priesthood holders that he wanted to go stop by, so we were along for the ride! We stopped by a few really interesting people, but largely didn't have a whole lot of success. But the invitation is always there for them!

On Friday, after all of our weekly planning, we went and visited with a 19 year old less-active member. He talked to us a lot about his video games, and crazy work schedule. He has been working at McDonalds for about 6 months now, and has already been promoted to a manager! Apparently you usually only become a manager after 1 year. We coordinated his work schedule, and set up another time to come meet with him. Cool kid, but needs to work a little bit on his priorities. He has a girlfriend and everything, but his video games come first. Interesting. I guess because I am not into video games, I just don't understand. After our meeting with him, we had an adult ward activity! We played a card game called Whist. It was a pretty fun game, but I was awful at it haha! At least it was still fun to be a loser ;) After the activity, we set up the chairs and everything for an investigator’s baptism the next morning.

On Saturday morning we attended the baptism. I always love being able to attend baptisms of other members in the ward. I feel like if they come to our convert baptisms, then we should even more so support their own family baptisms! It was a great baptismal service, and I think the ward really appreciated us being there. Afterwards, my companion has been coordinating a 3 ward church tour with our Ward. All the wards in our district! Fliers were made, and we have been inviting people for a few weeks now, but NO ONE came. Hopefully if we ever do this again in the future, we will have a better success rate. Oh well, I guess it was a good learning experience! Afterwards, I had to call Sprint about our horrendous cell service. We cannot make a phone call without dropping the call at least once or twice, our text messages are not always received on the other end, and we rarely have cell service. I called, and was on the phone with Sprint for the next 3 hours! It took FOREVER, and they only made a report to work on it later. Hopefully it will all be worked out soon enough! In the evening we were able to do a teaching evaluation with a ward member. His wife is out of town on a business trip, so it was fun to be able to visit with him while he was home alone. He told us that he and his wife have been talking about us a lot recently, and recognize that we are different than every other missionary companionship that has served in here. He said that he likes our focus on members, and that we are fun to be around, but still concentrated on our work. They are amazing! Plus, everyone likes to receive compliments. Totally made my day!

Sunday was pretty good. I wasn't feeling all that great, so fasting was a bit of a challenge, but it all worked out! Fast and Testimony Meeting was great, and church was really nice. In the evening we went joint teaching, and were able to stop by two investigators and set up a time to meet with them on Monday. Our joint teacher for Monday is really great friends with one of them, and wanted to see him while we went out joint teaching. We talked about the Priesthood and about the importance of attending church. It was a great lesson! We finished off the evening by visiting with another investigator. She was able to attend church today, so we were able to share with her "Be Ye Converted" by Bonnie L. Oscarson from this past General Conference. She really enjoyed it, and it got her excited for this upcoming General Conference. No crazy cat experiences this time!

Thank you all so much for all of your love and support. You are all such an inspiration to me! Thank you so much for all of your love and prayers. Have a great April Fool's Day :) Talk to you next week.

Best Wishes,
Elder Kyle William Andrews

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