Monday, June 30, 2014

New Mission President

Hello Everyone,

It has been another crazy week here in Minnesota, as always haha! On Monday (Discovery Day) we had our P-Day, and then went joint teaching in the evening. We taught a family that just moved into our area. She was baptized three years ago, and her husband is starting to take the discussions. We taught the restoration, and he accepted the baptismal invite! It was great :)

On Tuesday, Quebec National Day, my companion was sick. He woke up with a pretty nasty cold, and it just got worse from there. I studied for most of the day, and caught up on some cleaning. I of course indulged in a bunch of Diet Coke, and found their new marketing scheme to be quite fun! On all of their cans and bottles they are now printing "Share a Diet Coke with your...". Some of them even have names on them! Let me know if any of you find a bottle with my name on it :) I have been taking lots of fun pictures of the sayings on my cans of Diet Coke though, I just don't have access to Facebook yet to tag people to my pictures haha. Tuesday evening was kind of interesting though. I was in the bathroom washing my face and getting ready for bed, and my companion was in the other room. I came out, and he looked SUPER uncomfortable. I asked him if he was okay, and he said that he was fine. We went to bed later that evening, and randomly, when I was almost asleep, he asked me how I was feeling. I said that I was good, just tired. He asked me if that was all that I was feeling, and then he told me that he felt like there was a Spirit in our apartment, and that when he was in the other room he felt like someone was following behind him, watching him. I said that I hadn't felt anything, but recommended that we bless the apartment just in case. Problem solved! He said that he felt much better afterwards.

On Wednesday we had our very last Zone Training with President and Sister Clements. It was quite odd. We took pictures, said our goodbyes, and received our last bits of instruction from them. I have really grown to love the Clements this past year, and I am surely going to miss them. Good things are in the works with President and Sister Forbes though! In the evening we went joint teaching. We had an appointment with our investigator, but when we arrived he said that he was having really bad chest pain, and that he was really irritated. We offered to give him a blessing, and he accepted. Afterwards we had a lesson with another investigator on the Word of Wisdom. He is usually drunk or high from weed during our lessons, so we committed him to be sober for our next lesson. He was hesitant, but he agreed. We finished off the evening by stopping by the bread lady. She is such a sweet woman, and is feeling a lot better now that school is over! We asked her what her favourite verse in the Bible was, and she said that she would get back to us next time.

On Thursday we had our time. Afterwards we had our accountability calls, and then we tried to stop by some investigators, but they were not home. We found out last minute that we were going to have a Zone Service Project on Friday, so we had to pack in a quick Weekly Planning Session. Thursday evening the Forbes arrived in Minnesota, crazy!
On Friday we had our Zone Service Project at Boom Island Park in Minneapolis. We moved the mulch from the greenery sections between the parking lots, and replaced the mulch with two tons of rocks. It was an adventure. I have a blister on both of my hands from raking so many rocks! While we were doing our Zone Service, a Sister who is serving in our zone right now mentioned that she read my blog a few weeks before she entered into the mission field and that it helped to prepare her for her mission. Kind of cool! In the evening we went joint teaching with our Ward Mission Leader. We had an appointment with an investigator, but she was not home. On her deck her next door neighbors were outside, so we talked to them. They mentioned a lot of the pains they were going through, so we talked about how the gospel and the teachings of Jesus Christ can help them. It was a super cool lesson! We committed them to come to Church, but they were moving over the weekend. Kind of lame. Afterwards we met briefly with the member who just moved here, because her husband was not home. She mentioned that he was having a hard time, but that we should keep working with him. Kind of an odd lesson. We finished off the evening by stopping by a different investigator. We knocked on the door and heard yelling from inside the house. He stormed outside, and told us that it was not the time. We talked for a little while, and then went on a walk with him. He talked about the communication struggles he was having with his wife, and really opened up. We talked about how Church and the gospel can help to begin to fix all of that, if he is willing to sacrifice and make the effort to improve. He agreed to come to Church on Sunday! It was a super cool evening :)

On Saturday we helped a family move to their new home in Minneapolis, still in our ward. They were SO appreciative of our service, and we committed the husband to come to Church on Sunday. It had been a while since we last saw them, so it was good to re-establish contact! In the evening we went joint teaching. We had a referral that we received, but the address did not exist. We looked for it, and found a possible location for the house. We knocked on the door and a man answered. He talked with us for a while, and then his wife came to the door and cussed us out. Turns out we were at their back door, awkward haha! We were able to teach him for a little while though, which went really well.

On Sunday we had Priesthood Executive Council at 7:00 AM... yuck. Then we confirmed everyone that was coming to Church, and a lot of people bailed, except for the family we helped. They came to Church, and had a great experience! It was a great week :) Afterwards we had dinner with the a family who just returned home from Utah. We re-established contact with him, and set up a few lessons with him now that he is home! In the evening we had a mission call with President and Sister Forbes. I have not met them yet, but they have great sounding voices haha ;) I know that everything is going to work out just fine.

It has been another great week! Thank you all so much for your love and support. I hope you have a great Canada Day and 4th of July weekend! Talk to you later.

Best Wishes,

Elder Kyle William Andrews

Monday, June 23, 2014

Many good people

Hello Everyone,

Happy Discovery Day! This week has been crazy, but it is behind us now. On Monday after P-Day we had a ton of rain and thunder storms, so not a whole lot got done. There was some pretty severe flooding all over the mission.

On Tuesday we had our District Meeting, and in the evening we went joint teaching with the Bishop. We contacted a referral we received, and while we were talking to him, a Native-American woman came out and waited for us to finish talking with him. When we had set up a return appointment, we went over and talked to this woman. She told us that for a few weeks now she has been praying that God would lead members of the Church to her. She is an inactive member with no means of communication (i.e. cell phone, computer, etc...). She knew that the chance of us running into her was very small, but that God would provide a way. Low and behold, we just so happened to be lead right next door to her home! Bishop talked with her for a while, and got her membership information so that we can request her records. She wants to come to Church, and meet with the Bishop. Afterwards we had a great lesson with an investigator family on goal setting and progression. They set a goal to come to Church each week, starting with this week. It was a pretty great day!

On Wednesday we went over to do some service for a family in the ward. While we were there, the Sister offered to cut my hair because it was getting kind of long. I felt bad turning down her offer, so I went through with it. WHY DO I MAKE THIS MISTAKE EVERY TIME! It was quite the experience. It was pretty interesting looking when she finished, but I knew that I would be able to salvage my hair for the most part. My aunt is amazing, and after having her cut my hair for a few years I have picked up a few things from watching her (not that I would ever elect to cut my own hair). When we returned home, I went to the bathroom with my comb and a pair of scissors and I fixed up my hair. It actually looks pretty good, but it is a lot shorter than I wanted it to be. Luckily my hair grows quickly :) In the evening we went joint teaching, and had a lesson with an investigator. We talked about the Plan of Salvation, and he shared some of his beliefs with us and unique views on religion. There is a lot of work to do there, but he is starting to get the point of all of our doctrine!

Thursday was crazy! We went to PRISM for the first time in a long time, which was pretty good. We went back to our apartment afterwards, and I realized that my jacket which had our keys to everything in the pocket was at PRISM. A ward member picked us up for dinner and joint teaching, and I decided to take a shot in the dark and try stopping by PRISM. They were closed, so the chances of anyone being there were very limited. We got there and all of the lights were turned off in the building, except for one. I knocked on the door, and sure enough someone came to the door! It was a miracle. I got my jacket and our keys back :) Later, we went out joint teaching and had a great lesson with an investigator family. We planned on watching the Restoration DVD with them, but their DVD player was broken, so we had the kids act it out instead! It was way fun, and the kids loved acting out the entire lesson. Afterwards we stopped by a less active member, and our joint teacher really connected with them. One is a carpenter, and the other renovates and builds additions on homes. It was really cool! The member also asked us to come over on Saturday to help out with a few things. It was a great day!

On Friday we had Weekly Planning, and a new maintenance manager came and worked on our apartment. He asked about what we do as missionaries, and so we taught him the restoration! Kind of crazy how many random teaching opportunities we have had lately. In the evening we went over and met with an investigator couple. They mentioned to us that last Sunday they attended their Catholic Church, and although they don't really like their Church, they feel like that is where they need to be. We were kind of baffled, but testified that if they read the Book of Mormon and pray about it that God would tell them that this is His true Church. They agreed, and said that we could still come visit with them occasionally, but that they feel like they already know which Church to go to. Maybe in time they will reconsider.

On Saturday I had a dermatologist appointment in St. Louis Park where I found out that the steroids that the Dr. had prescribed me had caused the increased inflammation on my skin. They prescribed me a couple things to clear up the damage that had been done, and an ointment that will fix the problem. Apparently the weird spots that I have are trapped dead skin cells, and I just needed a particular ointment to clear them up. Nothing big :) Afterwards we went over to the less active members for some service. When we arrived, we found out that their car radiator went out the night before, their sub pump broke and their basement flooded, and he had a crazy day scheduled, so they were in more need of help now than they had originally anticipated. We took vacuums and vacuumed up the water out of their sub pump and dumped it in their washing room sink, and helped transfer their leaves to suitable bags. They had put their leaves in trash bags, but in Minnesota they have particular bags and trash cans for yard waste and leaves and they will not pick it up if you try to dispose of it like trash. Kind of weird. In the evening we went joint teaching. We received a referral for a woman, and we had set up an appointment for the evening. We taught her the restoration, and she committed to baptism, to read the Book of Mormon, and to come to Church! It was an amazing lesson. Afterwards we visited with an investigator family briefly and confirmed that they were coming to Church on Sunday, and then we had a lesson with another investigator to finish off the evening. It was a great day :)

Sunday came and we had Ward Council at 7:00 AM. That means I had to wake up at 5:30 AM instead of 6:30 AM. Yuck! After Ward Council we went all over the place picking people up for Church. We went to pick up an investigator with a man who is in the Bishopric now from the old ward. We were talking and I found out that one of our investigators is his sister! Small world! We arrived at our investigator’s house, and she had slept in and said that she wasn't going to be able to make it. We made a bunch of calls, and everyone who had been planning on coming to Church was bailing. The only people left were one family, but they didn't end up coming either. Kind of frustrating! We arrived at Church, and someone in the High Council introduced us to a man who had just moved in to the area, and saw our Church so he decided to come. He looked up the times online, and showed up. Crazy! I think the biggest thing that I continue to learn on my mission is that the Lord can do His own work. We did everything we could to get people to Church, and none of the people we had been working with came. This man saw our Church and decided to come on his own, without anything we did to help him. That is so cool to me! Frustrating that none of our investigators came, but still cool :) We taught him the restoration, and set up a return appointment for next week. In the evening we went joint teaching. We met with a couple who just moved into the ward. She is a member, and her husband is interested in taking the discussions. They weren't able to meet with us right then, but we set up an appointment for Monday evening. Afterwards my companion began to get really sick, so we had to turn in early.

Overall everything worked out for the best :) Another great week in Minnesota! Thank you all so much for all of your love and support. You are the best!

Best Wishes,

Elder Kyle William Andrews

Monday, June 16, 2014

God does his own work.

Hello Everyone,

This week has been a little all over the place, but it all worked out in the end. On Pentecost Monday we had a District P-Day. We went to Downtown Minneapolis and saw the sculpture gardens, toured the St. Mary's Basilica, and went to Sebastian Joe's Ice Cream Parlor. It was amazing! I absolutely love sightseeing, and I especially enjoyed touring St. Mary's Basilica. I loved the gorgeous architecture and the peaceful feeling of the Basilica! It was amazing :) The only downside was that while we were out sightseeing, my camera started to break. The wrist strap fell apart, and the power button is starting to get really loose. I guess it is an older camera now, but it frustrated me none the less haha! In the evening we went out with a member of the ward, and contacted a bunch of referrals that we received. It wasn't a super fruitful evening, but we had a good time.

On Tuesday we met up with the Zone Leaders, because an elder was going to the mission home to conclude his mission. We went on a temporary exchange with an elder from Kayesville, Utah, and covered two areas for the day. We had a bunch of accountability calls, and then met with a man that the Zone Leaders had an appointment with. We taught him the restoration, and had a great lesson with him! Later in the day we had a lesson with our investigator family, and talked about Church attendance. We watched an AMAZING Mormon message called Mountains To Climb. Definitely recommend watching that one! It was an interesting day, kind of crazy, but it worked out.

On Wednesday a member from the ward called us up and asked us if we could help someone move some furniture. We helped her move a big dresser, and coordinated moving efforts for her later in the month. Afterwards we went over to a home and mowed their lawn, sprayed for weeds, and weed whacked. Afterwards we had lunch, and the new elder arrived. We were walking down the street a while later, and a woman yelled out at us and told us to meet her down at the next street. I felt a little apprehensive. People yell at us ALL THE TIME, but they never want to meet up with us. I thought we were about to be thrown down, but it was a woman. We met her at the next street, and she told us that she wanted to give us a McDonalds receipt that she just got with a coupon on it. She also mentioned that she dated a Mormon and almost married him, and that she was interested in investigating the Church again. We later found out that she made up the McDonalds thing on the spot to rationalize why she was stopping us. SUPER COOL :) In the evening we went out joint teaching and started off by meeting with an investigator. He was in the back yard fixing a lawn mower, so it was a different kind of a discussion. We talked to him about Church and some of his beliefs. He invited us back another time when he was less busy. We finished off the evening stopping by the bread lady. We had a nice discussion with her, and went home to plan for the next day.

On Thursday we had a lot of work done on our apartment. Our apartment sucks, and it is pretty much falling apart. It is definitely a humbling experience for me. I have never really had to deal with ghetto circumstances. In fact my apartment in college was a BIG adjustment for me, and it was pretty nice! Now that I see the comparison, I was living in the Ritz Carlton of neighboring BYU apartments. Now I am living it up in a ghetto Super 8 Motel. It is definitely eye opening. Anyways, one of the workers came over and was fixing up our bathroom, and our sliding glass door, and our air conditioner, and our molding wall, etc... We started to strike up a conversation with him, and he began asking us questions about our Church. We began to teach him the restoration, and he was super accepting of it all! In the evening we went out with a member, and had an appointment with a new member. He got called into work, but his wife was there with her friend so we talked with them for a little while. We got to know her friend who is from Ethiopia. She talked to us about the search she has been on to find a good Church, and so we taught her the restoration. All this week we have had miracle after miracle. People has basically been coming to us, asking to be taught. It is definitely true that God can do His own work! She accepted the baptismal invite, and is excited to learn more about the Church. Our new member invited her over Monday evening to be taught in her home. Awesome! Afterwards we went over to visit with an investigator. I knew she wasn't going to be home, because it was a Thursday evening, but I felt restrained to share that with everyone. We went over to her home, and her niece answered the door. We talked to her for a little while, and taught her the restoration. She was interested in learning more, but brought up a brain injury she had a while ago and mentioned that her memory is not very good. She wants to learn though, so we can help her along the way! It was an amazing evening :)

On Friday we weekly planned, and went out joint teaching. We saw an investigator on the street and stopped to talk with him for a while, and then went over to see a different investigator family. We followed up on our lesson about Church attendance, and invited them to Church on Sunday. They committed to come, so all was well! We taught the 10 commandments and Sabbath day observance. They seemed to really enjoy the lesson! Afterwards we taught the woman that stopped us earlier in the week. She was really eager to learn, and was excited to read the Book of Mormon. She accepted the baptismal invitation, and committed to come to Church. It was incredible!

From Wednesday - Friday my companion and I were on a 3 Day Military Diet that he has been using on his mission. I am not a big fan of fad diets, but I decided to just suck it up and do it with him. No bueno. It was awful! I have never been more exhausted, more crabby, and more hungry in my life haha. We both lost 5 pounds, but it totally wasn't worth it. I feel like a healthy diet, and exercise is the best way to do it, but he is determined to lose a bunch of weight. I guess he doesn't fit into most of the clothes that he brought with him on his mission, so he needs to change. I guess my biggest beef with fad diets is that once the 3 days were over, he was back to eating normal foods and snacking all the time, and chowing down on doughnuts. It just doesn't teach you to live a healthy lifestyle. He wants to do it once a week, and basically told me that he needs me to do it with him, so I will... but I certainly am not going to enjoy it. I have never felt such an urge in my life to take a bath in ice cream and rub cake all over my face, and eat french fries and drink gallons and gallons of Diet Coke as I have on this diet.... actually maybe I have had the urge to drink that much Diet Coke ;) But it isn't good.

On Saturday we had a Zone Service Project in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota. We cleaned up at the 50th Annual Tater Daze Carnival. It was nice to break up our regular missionary efforts, but there were way too many missionaries for the amount of actual trash they had. There was a lot of standing around, with not much to do. The whole time I was totally wanting to go on some carnival rides, but I restrained myself. Once I get back from my mission though, "I'm going to Disneyland" like they used to say in those old Disneyland commercials haha. Afterwards we went out joint teaching. There was a super bad lighting storm though, so the evening did not work out as we had planned. We were eating dinner at their house, and lighting struck right near their home and the power all shorted out. Kind of dramatic! I have never seen lighting that close before! At the end of the evening we had a mission conference call starting a fast for gratitude on Sunday. Yep... three day diet, one day break, mission fast on Sunday.... yikes!

Sunday was pretty great! The only downside was that of all the people that committed to come to Church, not a single one of them followed through on their commitment. Rude. It was Father's Day though, so maybe another week will be better. It was an interesting Sunday though! One of the Salmon kids is in my ward now, I certainly wasn't expecting that. I don't really know him very well, but it was a fun surprise! In the evening we attended President Clements last Presidents Fireside with our neighbor. He drove us there and everything! Kind of cool. We moved him into our apartment complex a few months ago when my companion had just recently arrived here, so it was cool to see our service efforts come full circle! It was a great evening, and we had some interesting conversations with Will. Such is the life ;)

Thank you all for all of your love and support! I hope you have an amazing week and that all is well back home :) Talk to you soon!

Best Wishes,
Elder Kyle William Andrews

Monday, June 9, 2014

Transfers and Surprises

Hello Everyone,

It has been another great week :) We got our transfer emails today from President Clements, and my companion and I will be serving together for another transfer. Luckily transfers weren't really a stress, because when we went joint teaching with President Clements a week ago, he basically told us that we would be serving together for another transfer! Life is good :) I can't believe that this will be President Clement's last transfer email though. He goes home on June 27th, and then we will be under President Forbes jurisdiction. Happy Pentecost Monday by the way :) Haha sorry, I have a ton of things on my mind right now, so this letter is kind of random.

Last Monday after our P-Day concluded we went joint teaching with a ward member. We had a lesson with an investigator family on the last part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ (baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end.) They loved it, and we recommitted them to come to Church on Sunday. We set up a time to do a Church tour with them on Saturday so that they wouldn't get "lost" again. We also had a quick discussion with another investigator. He mentioned that he was going through a really tough time, because he was notified that because of his grade in Spanish, he was being put on academic probation in his prep school. He is there on scholarship, so it is a big deal. We talked to him about prayer, and how he can receive the Lord's support in his trials! He really enjoyed meeting with us, and he even said the closing prayer :)

On Tuesday we started off the day with a little bit of service! We mowed a family’s lawn, and I used their clippers and manicured their bushes, hedges, and trees. It was a fun project for us! On the way back home, a helpless little duckling ran in front of us, tripped and fell on her back, and was chirping and running and falling all over the place. She almost ran onto the street, where cars were rushing by, so we had to help her! We have a rule that we are not allowed to have pets of any kind, but we felt like Megan, the duckling, was an exception to the rule. We brought her home, made a little box for her, fed her some bread, and gave her a water dish. She was walking kind of weird, and wasn't particularly pleased to be in a box. We texted a teenager in our ward, and told her about our predicament. She and her Mom rushed over to our apartment to meet Megan! We took a bunch of pictures, and passed Megan on them for further care. I believe they gave Megan to the humane society to get her leg checked out, and to make sure that she was well taken care of. It was an eventful start to the day! Afterwards we had a bunch of accountability calls, and then we went joint teaching. We had a great lesson with an investigator and his family on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We reset his baptismal date to July 12th (right before my birthday!), and talked to him about conversion. He bore really sincere testimony to us, and it truly was an incredible lesson. It is so amazing to be able to be a missionary, and to "invite others to come unto Christ." He is an amazing father, and he is going to lead his family in righteousness! Afterwards we went to an apartment complex, and met a man and we taught him the restoration outside, and set up a return appointment for Tuesday next week. It was a great day!

On Wednesday we had our last District Meeting of the transfer. I made s'mores cupcakes and pink lemonade chex mix to celebrate! We took District photos, and afterwards we had accountability with our Zone Leaders. I had an appointment with the Dr. afterwards, and he referred me to a dermatologist (which I expected). I will be meeting with a dermatologist on June 21st. In the evening we went out joint teaching. We taught an investigator the restoration. Our joint teacher was amazing at bearing testimony, and promising him blessings of the changes that the gospel would bring his life. Our investigator really appreciated his kind words, and was a lot more accepting of our teachings. Good things are ahead! Afterwards we met with a less-active member who recently relapsed from 90 days of sobriety, so we talked about faith and repentance, the gospel of Jesus Christ! He really liked what we were sharing with him, and it really lifted his spirit :) It is cool to see an almost instant change in people when we meet with them!

On Thursday we had some pretty crazy things happen to us. We have not been very good at doing our weekly service. In fact, we have only been once this transfer because of scheduling complications. We planned to go on Thursday, and then an investigator texted us and said that she could only meet with us Thursday afternoon at 2:00. So we cancelled service, and walked over to her home. On the way there, we met a man at a bus stop. We taught him the restoration, and gave him our card before he hopped on the bus. Afterwards a man Ethiopia ran across the street to talk to us. We taught him the restoration as well! He does not speak English super well, but he really wants to learn more about Jesus Christ and the restored gospel. SUPER cool :) All of this because we were walking to an appointment! Afterwards we met with our investigator and taught her about the Plan of Salvation. She said that it was very different than she had been taught, and that she would have to study it out and pray about it. She really enjoyed learning about it though, and wants to continue meeting with us. We will see her next Thursday afternoon! Later we went out joint teaching. We met a man who had met with missionaries in the past, and he was very open to being taught again. We scheduled another time to meet with him, because he had family over and didn't have a lot of time to meet with us. Before we went to bed, my companion and I discovered that we were in the same choir! We both went to Honor Choir at Albravanel Hall when Corey Mendenhall (my old choir teacher) was the conductor. Small world!

On Friday morning we went to the temple. Afterwards we did some weekly planning and scheduled out the next week! It makes planning a lot easier when you pretty well know that you will be staying together ;) In the evening we decided to go and stop by an investigator. We talked to him at his doorstep for a while and the conversation wasn't really going anywhere. All of the sudden his wife pulled into the driveway and joined in on our conversation. She told him that she had Sunday off work and that they were going to come to our Church. It was a miracle! No ifs, ands, or buts, they were coming to Church. We arranged to pick them up so that they would have some friends to walk into Church with.

On Saturday we met with our Jehovah's Witness friend. For our lesson we met at the Kingdom Hall with his wife. We discussed the Plan of Salvation, and it was probably the most frustrating lesson I have had on my entire mission. Regardless if we had a scripture that backed up what we said in the Bible, it didn't matter. They don't use the King James version of the Bible, and so all of their scriptures are different and contradict what our Bible says. He had looked up some anti on Wikipedia, and the lesson just didn't really go anywhere. I tried sharing a scripture that clarified what we were talking about in the Book of Mormon, but they weren't having it. Aye ya yi! Afterwards we went over to the Church and began filling the baptismal font for our investigator's baptism. We set up the Church and everything was prepped and ready to go :) I love organization, so organized events make me happy! The baptism went great, and Sister Clements even came! Afterwards we got a phone call from an investigator family, saying that they couldn't meet with us until 6. They were supposed to have come to the baptism. So at 6:00 PM we did a Church tour with them, and they loved it :) We committed them to come to Church, and then one of them announced that she just got a job at Sears, and that she had to work that Sunday. Frustration! We talked to her about asking for Sundays off, and joked that we would be praying for her to lose her new job ;) She didn't like that part too much haha! Needless to say, it was a pretty good day.

On Sunday we walked over to our investigator’s house and picked them up for Church. Their four-year-old son even came with them! We drove to Church, walked in, and sat down. I shuffled my stuff, and turned around and looked behind our row, and then had to do a double take. For two seconds it looked like someone that I knew back home was at Church with us! Wait, someone that I know WAS at Church with us! Ashlee, from Utah FCCLA was sitting on the back row with her grown up four-year-old daughter Elsie! Elsie was born when I was a state officer, so it was super weird to see how old she was now! Ashlee was in town visiting with her sister, and looked me up. Fun times :) After Church our investigators invited us over to their home for lunch. We went over and met their big extended family. Their extended family, however, was not super thrilled to meet us. They talked in Spanish the entire time, and didn't have a lot of nice things to say about us. Hopefully this won't cause any problems for our investigators! I think it was much less that we were Mormons, and more that we were white Americans, so that is good at least. Well... not good, but you know what I mean haha ;)

It has been a great week, and I am excited to see what is ahead this next transfer :) My birthday list is in the mail, and should arrive shortly. I know you have been anxiously awaiting it's arrival ;) Thank you all for your love and support! I am truly blessed to have so many supportive friends and family members while I am our here serving my mission. Have a great week!

Best Wishes,

Elder Kyle William Andrews

Monday, June 2, 2014

Teaching by the Spirit

Hello Everyone,

This week has been great! On Monday we went out joint teaching, and we had some "interesting" experiences with him in the evening. We met a woman whose sister referred herself on We talked with her for a moment, and then she stopped us. She said that she wanted to be honest with us, and she said that she didn't have a clue what we were saying to her because she had been drinking and smoking weed. We set up another time to meet with her, and she said that she would "fast" from smoking weed for our 6:00 PM appointment haha! People here crack me up ;) We finished the evening teaching some teenage kids that I found in our Area Book. They were taught forever ago, and then they dropped off the face of the Earth. We stopped by, taught them, and set up a return appointment. One was not really feeling the baptismal invite, but the other was all game! It was a great evening, even though we ran into a bunch of Word of Wisdom problems because of Memorial Day.

On Tuesday we had District Meeting, and afterwards I went on exchange with elder in another area. It was an interesting exchange, but not very productive. It is hard jumping around from area to area, especially when things are going well in your own area! We had a lesson with an investigator in our area, and I was elsewhere. We had a joint teacher in their area for the evening. But we didn't teach anyone, and I felt like it was kind of a waste of time. Our joint teach was SUPER negative about the conditions of their ward, and it was just kind of an off evening.

On Wednesday we exchanged back, and had an AMAZING lesson with our investigator. We talked about prayer with him, and answered a lot of his questions. He discussed how our Church has "freelance" prayers, and how in other Churches they have set prayers. We talked about how our prayers for the Sacrament, and for Baptisms are set, and all other prayers follow a certain formula (Dear Heavenly Father, We Thank Thee, We Ask Thee, In The Name of Jesus Christ, Amen.) We talked about how God answers our prayers, and he mentioned that he had not prayed in a very long time. At the end of our lesson we invited him to pray, but he said that he would need to take a rain check, however, he committed to pray on his own at home. Afterwards we went out joint teaching. We picked up two investigators and attended a baptism in the Medicine Lake Ward. The kids enjoyed it, but the baptismal service wasn't super great. There was a lot of last minute details that were overlooked, so the baptism was thrown together and didn't pan out super fantastic. We finished off the evening by stopping by the bread lady. She introduced herself to my companion and we had a nice discussion while she loaded us up with bread, and a few cupcakes. Such a sweet lady!

On Thursday we went out joint teaching. We had a lesson with our investigator’s kids outside, because she wasn't feeling fell. We talked about baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. Holy cow, the mosquitoes are back! I think I probably got eight or nine mosquito bites during the lesson. It was worth it though, but I will for sure have to figure out my mosquito situation. Any tips on avoiding mosquito bites? Someone suggested taking odorless garlic pills, so I started taking those a few months ago religiously, but it hasn't worked out. Probably because they are odorless, and mosquitoes don't even know it is in your system. Maybe I will have to get some bug spray, but I absolutely HATE how it smells. We finished off the evening with a lesson with an investigator family. We talked about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, specifically faith and repentance. It was a great lesson, and it answered a lot of their questions. They even agreed to come to Church on Sunday!

On Friday we had an awesome Weekly Planning session, and then my companion had a baptismal interview for a woman in the other ward Ward. We did a Church tour with her before the interview, and everything went really well. Afterwards we ate at this restaurant called "Delicious Chow Mein." It was not delicious! In fact it kind of made me sick. I couldn't drink my water, because it had something floating at the top of it, and the experience was just kind of sickening. NEVER AGAIN! Afterwards we went out joint teaching, and all of the appointments we had with four of our investigators fell through. It was kind of trying, but everyone has those days I guess. At the end of the evening we got a phone call from President Clements. He told us that he wanted to come out joint teaching with us on Sunday afternoon from 2:45-5:00 PM. AHH! We were freaking out haha! We didn't get a whole lot of sleep that night as you can imagine, but we had a pretty good plan in place for Sunday.

On Saturday we got a phone call from our Zone Leaders informing us that a less-active member in Eagan, Minnesota was moving to Bloomington, Minnesota with her boyfriend who lives in our area and that he needed help moving. We biked over to his place and helped him out with his move, and arranged for the Assistants in Bloomington to help them unpack when they arrived. It was a great start to the day! Afterwards we taught our Jehovah's Witness friend. We had a nice discussion with him, and he was a lot kinder to us this time. We were able to teach him about the Restoration of our Church, but he didn't accept a Book of Mormon or the baptismal invitation. Maybe one day though! As we were walking back to our apartment, it began to sprinkle a little bit. All of the sudden the sprinkle turned into a little bit harder rain, and then it poured and thundered, and we were soaked! A sweet old lady pulled over and offered us a ride, but we can't be alone with someone of the opposite gender unless there are three of us. So we trudged back to our apartment, completely soaked. We changed, and hung out our clothes. Later we walked over to an investigator's home and had a great lesson with him on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He was super exhausted, but we had a great discussion with him :) He committed to stop drinking coffee, because he relapsed on his previous commitment, and he committed to come to Church with his family on Sunday. As we walked back, it rained again. I brought a jacket this time, but my companion was soaked!

On Sunday we had our special 11:00 AM Sacrament Meeting combined with the other. The entire time I was reminded of when the Grandview 21st Ward boundaries were realigned, and we were stuck in the Grandview 9th Ward. The other ward was terminated, and they were all added to the our ward. Everyone in the other ward was released, and now we have a massive ward, and three sets of missionaries. Honestly, I wasn't super thrilled about the change, but I know that somehow this is the Lord's plan for this area. (I still don't think the Grandview 21st Ward realignment was part of the Lord's plan. People make mistakes all the time! Elder Uchtdorf even gave a talk about it a while ago.) Everything will work out in the end, it will just take some getting used to. We had five families planning on attending Sacrament Meeting, and not a single one of them showed up. It was a trying start to the day, and coming up we had our appointments with President Clements. Yikes! We changed, and went out with President Clements at 2:45 PM and went over to the Sims home, our first appointment for the afternoon. They were supposed to have come to Church earlier, so we were interested to see what was going to happen. We called ahead, and they said that they were out shopping but should be home for the appointment. We showed up, and NO ONE was home. Awkward! So we went tracting with President Clements. It was actually a super cool experience! President Clements is amazing at working with people, so it was quite productive. We even went walking with a man for a while, while President taught him. Afterwards we went over and had a lesson with some investigators. We were planning on teaching the Plan of Salvation and answering some of his questions, but President Clements took the lesson in a different direction. He told the husband that he was going home soon and that he wanted to help him as much as he can before he leaves. He said that we had a lesson prepared, but that if he had any questions, he would like to teach him. Our investigator brought up some of his concerns with the Church, and he and President Clements and had a great discussion! At the end of the lesson he agreed to begin reading the Book of Mormon, and arranged to meet with President Clements at the Mission Home next Sunday. It was incredible! His wife’s eyes were huge the entire time, because she was amazed at her husbands responses to President Clements. Afterwards we were talking with President Clements on the drive home, and he said that when he has free time he looks at the pictures of all the missionaries, and the Spirit tells him where he is needed. He said that our pictures stood out to him, so he called and arranged joint teaching. He said it is usually for the missionaries themselves, or for a particular investigator. He told us that he needed to be there for our investigator, and we completely agreed! He told us that he would be converted, but that it would be a slower, but consistent process. He said that he is like no other investigator he has met on his mission. It was super cool :) I decided to push my limits a little bit, and so I expressed my concerns with the upcoming transfers next week. He patted my arm and said that my companion and I would be fine, and that we were going to have a very successful transfer next transfer. AWESOME :) In the evening we went to a girl in the ward’s graduation party to meet with her friend again. We had a discussion outside while making s'mores, and getting attacked by mosquitoes. It was a great ending (besides the mosquitoes) to a great day (minus the start of the day haha)!

Thank you all for your love and support! Things are going well, and I am excited to see what the future has to hold for us :) Talk to you next week!

Best Wishes,
Elder Kyle William Andrews