Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Another great week!

Dearest Peoples,

This week was absolutely fabulous. Elder awesome...I mean Cottam, and I have been working very hard to improve on all of our key indicators(which are found in chapter 8, page number I'm not sure about), and our results were up and down, in some areas we did better, but in others we didn't do as good, but we know that the lord blesses us for all of our efforts

I very much enjoyed zone conference yesterday. We talked a lot about the restoration of the gospel and about the atonement. I really enjoy zone conferences. They are always very spiritual and up lifting. We listened to a talk that Jeffery R Holland gave in the MTC in 2000. I had heard it in the MTC, I think two times, but it is always great to hear. It is so powerful and moving. He talks a lot about his mission and how we should treasure and make the best of ours. It is often called the don't go home talk, because he basically yells at everyone who is even thinking of going home. That talk is one of the reasons why I am so determined to serve no less then 24 months, not even one day less.

As for the rest of the week, we had a little bit of a miracle. A couple of weeks ago, Elder Cottam and I were in Nyssa and we talked to a man named Cornelia. We were looking for Oscar, and he said that he didn't know him, because he thought that we were the police or something. When we told him that we were missionaries, he told us where Oscar lives and also said that we could come visit him at his house. So we went last week and he told us about a dream that he had. He was praying and some random guy told him that God doesn't listen to him and that he won't ever be saved. Basically that is the general idea of his dream. The day after he had that dream we showed up. So he said that he knows that the dream was false and that God does answer prayers. We are very excited to teach him and hope that all goes well there.
it is time to go talk to you next week.
Elder Paxton

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

This week was a great week. It had a couple of interesting meetings but it was over all great. Looking at just the numbers(because that is what it is all about) we had 21 lessons(a record for me) and we set two baptismal dates in a ward that hasn't had very much success. Here are the total numbers for the week(look in preach my gospel for what they all mean) 0-0-2-2-9-7-4-1-3-2-5.

We have really been working hard and trying to visit as many people as possible. One thing that helps the work is that we cover a whole bunch of towns. Just this last week we went to in Oregon: Ontario, Vale, Owyhee, Nyssa, and Adrian, and in Idaho: Weiser, Payette, Fruitland, New Plymouth, Parma, and Roswell. We had at least one lesson in almost all of those towns, and the crazy thing is that isn't even half of our area. I am pretty sure that just about all of this half of Oregon is in our area, and some of Idaho. We cover the Ontario, Nyssa, and La Grand stakes, and half of the Weiser stake, so we have a lot of area to cover, but it is great.

So the two baptismal dates that we set are with some extremely eternal investigators. Conrad has seen the missionaries for about 10 years and thanks to all of their work, and a phone call from our ward mission leader, he is going to get baptized on march 26. Our ward mission leader called him on Saturday night to invite him to church and they talked for about an hour and ended up talking about baptism. The ward mission leader Elder Cottam made the promise to him and his son(who also smokes) to read the scriptures and pray every morning and every night and in three weeks they will not have any desire to smoke or drink. They both willingly accepted and are working to get baptized just before conference. It was a very spiritual experience to be able to witness. We are going to visit them tomorrow and we are going to watch the movie, Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration. We have a lot of hope for this family and are very excited for them.

Well that is everything that is going on here in the great Ontario Spanish area. This week we are hoping to improve and have even more success. Thanks for all the love and support and have a great week.


Elder Paxton

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

No Email?

Dear You,
To start off I am extremely tired, we just got done playing a lot of soccer and a little bit of basketball. It was great exercise but I am pretty dead now.

Sorry the email from last week didn't go I did send it but for some reason there was an error or something. Hopefully you get it.

I am glad you liked the picture. We were in a Greg Olsen art place and I didn't know which one to get so I grabbed a phone book and tried calling Grandma and Lori to see if they knew what you favorite picture of Christ is but nobody answered. They are probably at the cabin or something. So I decided to just get mine. I was hoping that the note would get there first so it would maybe be a little bit of a hint, I don't know if you noticed, but down the left side it says O JERUSALEM. I made a draft of two so I could make it fit with out being to obvious. I hope you enjoy it and put it up somewhere were everyone can see it.

So this week was a great week. We are really trying to continue to visit and teach as many people as possible. It is really exciting, we have so many people that are so close to baptism, all they need to do are the simple things like go to church and then I know that they will want to join the church. Not much else super exciting happened this past week though, just good old normal missionary work.

This week should be another great week we have already started off with teaching 5 lessons, so it should be great.

It is so cool to hear that you all got to experience the same weather that I am. It is a little bit cooler but right now it is high thirties and low forties for the highs. There is a lot more snow(in giant piles from the snow plows) but I don't know if we will get much more snow this year. It seems to be really mild the past few weeks, but maybe it is the calm before the storm, let's hope so!!!

It is so random that at the same time that mom called Sister Cannon I came into the office. I saw her on the phone and proceeded to talk to other missionaries and then we sang happy birthday to an Elder. I am sure you heard.

Well we have to get going, we have to still go to wal-mart and what not. bye!!


Elder Paxton

Last week...

Hola Familia!

This week was a great first week in Ontario. we had 3 baptisms in a family that I had just barely met, but even though I didn't know them I could feel the spirit of their baptism. It was great to be able to see Elder Sandoval and Elder Sewell there as well. Elder Sandoval gave a talk on the holy ghost and the family really loves him so it was great that he was able to make it.

We have also found/have been given, a couple of new investigators that seem to have a lot of prospect. We are very excited about them. One of them is in one of our English wards and his sister is an active member. We stopped by her house and had a little lunch with them and met Bob, her brother. He has just recently moved into the area is really grateful for the church and the service that he has received from them, with the moving help. This Sunday he was at church and was really excited to see us. He also told us that anytime that we want to come over for anything, we are welcome. We are going to get to know him and I really feel like he is ready to accept the gospel.

It has been a little interesting getting used to teaching in English since it has been so long. Sometimes I need to look up scriptures in Spanish and then go to English. It is funny because it was the exact opposite at the beginning of my mission, but I know that everything will be okay and that we will be able to have a lot of success.

I am going to put off getting the bike tire for a little while. Elder Cottam is a runner and we go out in the mornings, he runs and I bike. We have been taking a farm road that is muddy and has some snow on it too so I need the mountain tire, but if I need a new tire for my trainer I will get one from Wal-mart in Ontario, that is where we do all of our shopping.

My new place is the same place that I went to over a year ago. It is still pretty messy but it is not the worst I have seen. One fun experience that we had was that one of the two toilets was overflowing for about 20 minutes before we noticed (it is on the far side of the house). There was about 2 inches of water on the ground, one in the bathroom and one in the basement below. We called the facilities management people and on Monday they gave us a new toilet, and also fixed a few other things around the house, like our door knob, gave us a new lamp and a couple of other things. They still need to run a snake through our tub because when we are showering it fills up to mid shin so its almost like taking a bath.

There is a good number of members in the branch, it is a little smaller then the branch in Meridian but it is still good sized. Elder Cottam is pretty good at Spanish but still struggles a little bit, but everyone does when you have only been out of the MTC for six weeks. He is getting better every day though. It is such a blessing, and so fun, to be able to speak half way decent Spanish. I think about that everyday and am very grateful for all of the help that I receive.

It was pretty scary to hear about big Z's stomach. If any of the dogs decide to kick the bucket before I get back I will be very mad, so tell them to not. The past little while has been super fun it sounds like with all of the dogs, but I am glad that everyone should be okay. Someone needs to teach Z how to chew her food.

Thats all for this week!

Elder Paxton

Monday, February 7, 2011

No email? Awesome letter...

So last p-day I did not get an email from Elder Paxton. I was feeling pretty sad about not hearing from him. Then on Friday I came home to find a very large box had arrived addressed to Elder Paxton. I certainly was not going to wait for him to come home to open his own package, so I opened it. Inside was a beautiful framed Greg Olson print of the Savior overlooking Jerusalem.

There was not a note in the box or any explanation. Today I got the explanation. A letter that this missionary mom will cherish! Here is what he wrote:

Dear Mommy (and everyone I guess), Wednesday February 2, 2011

Yesterday we were shopping and almost our whole zone was there. While we were shopping we just thought that we would all get our mom's an extra special gift. So, we went to a church store. Right as we got there we knew that we were all understanding that we couldn't leave without getting something. We looked around for a while and to our amazement there was something for all. To show our love to our moms we all got a painting of Christ, as an example of our service and why we are out here. Mommy, thanks so much for everything. I hope that you like it.

Elder Paxton

I guess I will forgive him for no email last week. Now I should get another one tomorrow! What a great week!