concrete to the farmland! I'm in a place called Bayview, Maryland.
Basically as close as you can get to Baltimore and Washington D.C. in
terms of mission boundaries. This area covers, Maryland, Pennsylvania
and Delaware. Not all of it, just small parts of each area. This area
has been known to be a "dead area" where not much work gets done and
their last baptism was 8 months ago - ridiculous!
in Southwest Philly while I was in South Philly, so when we found out
we were companions we were both stoked! However, he is getting somewhat
"trunky" (thinking about home, slowing down on missionary work), so the
assistants told me it was my job to kick start the area and keep him
going! He's s great missionary, I think they were kidding - but we had
a super great week. The Lord blessed us in our efforts. No doubt about
that. We had the most lessons this area has had in the past 6 months.
In our first week here, seriously - we were blessed. Some missionaries
are so lazy and just do nothing... Or they want to work but don't know
how to. This area is mostly Baptist - not sure why. It's weird seeing
White Baptists. I haven't seen a Black person yet, which is
unfortunate. On the bright side I haven't had anyone cuss me out yet
here. That was a usual thing in Philly.
who is a convert, he was Catholic growing up, knew that wasn't the
true church so went on a search for the true church for several years
and ended up joining The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
"Mormons" - he has a Baptist friend who is a pastor at one of the big
churches here. He told me that the pastor gets paid like 150 grand...
Then he said that the pastor said he knew the Baptist Church wasn't
the true church, but when you make that much money you're not going to
stop! Man, I was ticked when I heard that. Some people and their
churches, so crazy. This stuff gets me going so I'll go on and share a
few experiences this week.
1. A few months back, a few missionaries did some service for these
farmers. The farmers invited them back for dinner, but always forgot,
so we saw them in the area book, called them up and scheduled a dinner
with them. We roll up to the house, smells like straight manure - I've
never really been on a farm before. We get inside their house, the one
guy - Man... I felt more creeped out than I did my first day in South Philly!
Anyways, they fed us some sort of stew... it was ok - but we shared
an awesome message with them at the end, they both loved it, talked a
lot about how when we are in the service of others we are in the
service of God - talked about how families are eternal and not just
meant for this life (had multiple kids). It was awesome! Just a
different environment I'm going to have to get use to.
this guy named Tim, so we called Tim up and met up with him. He was a
Muslim, but found out some of the stuff they did so he left it, and
was trying to look for the true church. He said he went around to
"EVERY" Christian church and finally he declared none of them were
true. Then one day he saw two missionaries walking around knocking
doors, and he asked them to come to his house to talk to him. He said
that they met with him a few times and that he read the parts of the
Book of Mormon, and he still reads the testimony of Joseph Smith
regularly and it keeps him up at night! He is nervous to get baptized
because he read some anti-literature which was just complete you know
what, and so we are trying to real him back in... He knows the church
is true though.
brother Boyle. Probably about 65 years old, really cool guy. He told
us his conversion story. Grew up Catholic, left the Catholic Church,
knew it was wrong - went to go search for the one true church on the
earth. Of course, just like everyone else and every other story, he
declared that the one true church was not on the earth and that he was
going to give up on looking for it, but before he did so, he prayed to
God to help him find the church - the next day two missionaries showed
up to his door, after they shared 30 minutes of the first discussion
he knew the church was true. He wouldn't be baptized though because he
didn't want to make commitments - a return missionary visiting came
out with the missionaries one night and told him, "How bout this, you
get baptized, try the church out for a month and if you don't like it,
leave" .. The guy told us, "I haven't missed a day of church since!"
Nothing better than hearing people's live change once they actually
find the truth.
Love you all. Thanks for everything you do!