Elder Gardner

Elder Gardner will enter the MTC on Wednesday, June 23rd. We will keep this blog up-dated every week with his letters and pictures. If you would like to write to Elder Gardner, please click on the "write a letter" link on the right hand side for directions and his address. If you don't know much about Mormon Missions read the "about missions" page to learn more; it may help you understand some confusing terms in the letters.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The storm (offices week 7)

The mission president´s wife always calls the week of tranfers ¨the storm.¨ It started out a really boring week, actually. I had nothing to do during the day while I was in the office. That was just the calm before the storm. I´ll start with the spiritual stuff this time:

Sunday was awesome! We broke my personal record for the most investiagors in church. The best part is that the members brought them all to church. The family with this little girl that is awesome came to church. The mom who isn´t a member even came in a skirt! Kind of funny since the dad who is a member came in a t-shirt and jeans. At least he came. They really liked it. A member also brought a neighbor to church. The neighboor is a thirteen year old girl named Rocio.

After church on Sunday we went to visit Rocio. She told us that she has gone to our church before with cousins in another city. She also told us her mom got baptized, but had since passed away. Her life has been really hard, so we talked a lot about God and how He loves us, even though bad things happen. She said at church for the first time in her life she really felt peaceful. But when my companion told her he had a gift for her she said, ¨No, I don´t like gifts.¨ Then when he showed her the Book of Mormon she was like, ¨I´m not going to touch that.¨ Apparently the missionaries gave her mom ´gifts´ and the Book of Mormon and then she died shortly after. It was intense, but she ended up accepting our present and even read a little bit before we left. At the end of the lesson we taught her to pray and even though she didn´t want to, we helped her pray to our Heavenly Father. It was an awesome lesson. She is a girl that really needs the gospel in her life.

It was hard the rest of the week since we still have this elder with the hurt back with us. So to be able to go out to work we either have to have the car or need a member to do divisions. I called every male member of the ward probably three times throughout the week, but a lot of them are on vacation so it was hard to get them to help us. A few times we just had to pay for a taxi. It´s worth the sacrifice to be able to preach the word of God. But that´s all the good spiritual experiences for this week, now on to the office adventures.

On Tuesday I went with Elder Castañeda to go deal with a piano. Apparently over a year ago there was an apartment with a piano in it. The missionaries left to work one day and left the window open. It rained and the piano got wet and ruined. So the mission paid some guy to fix it. A year went by and the guy hadn´t fixed it yet so a month or so ago Elder Castañeda went to see how things were going. A week ago he called again and talked to the wife of the guy who was supposed to fix it. The piano fixer man had just passed away a day earlier. So we went to talk to the wife, picked up all the pieces of the piano (the pieces are fixed it just has to be put together) and dropped them off at the owner of the piano´s house. We also took the opportunity to give the wife a Book of Mormon. It was a pretty delicate situation, but Elder Castañeda is an experienced business man and handled it really well.

On Thursday I went with Elder Castañeda to go inspect some apartments and install smoke dectores in the walls. While I was there I fixed one of the fans for them. Then on Friday we had to drive to an area to drop of the injured back elder to be with another elder that is sick and can´t leave the house. We drove back and went straight to President´s house to help with transfers. That was an interesting experience. President opened the transfer board on the wall with all the pictures of the elders. He had already made a lot of changes and let us look for a few minutes just to see what all the changes were. He then started at one end and went through talking about every area and every elder explaining why he felt the change was necessary and asking for feedback. It was interesting to see what he was looking for; he analized each areas potential to baptize, each elders personality and history in the mission and potential to baptize. He was clearly inspired of God as he was deciding what to do with 180 missionaries so that the mission baptizes more and so that every missionary is placed in a area to help him grow personally. Mission presidents are awesome. Especially mine.

Well, that´s all the exicting stories. Except for one pretty important announcement I need to make. The senior couple that works in the offices is leaving in three months. The senior couple that is going to replace them doesn´t get here for four months. So there will be a month where regular missionaries will have to take over their jobs. President informed me that I will be taking over the husband´s job as financial secretary. So I will be in charge of all of the money of the entire mission. Kind of intense, right? But, the new senior couple doesn´t get here until the day I am supposed to leave. So President asked me to extend my mission and stay a couple extra weeks to be able to train the new senior couple on how to run the finances. Now, instead of coming home the end of June I will be coming home the middle of July. I hope that doesn´t ruin anyone´s hopes to see me; you´ll just have to wait two weeks more.

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