About This Blog

Elder Whitney is called to serve in the Arcadia, California mission, English speaking. He enters the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah on September 4, 2013 and will serve for two years.

This blog is being maintained by his family to post general updates, pictures from Elder Whitney, and to keep his mailing information up to date. Elder Whitney would love to get letters and emails from everyone!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Dec. 2 to Dec. 9

Hi all!

I don't have a lot of time this week to email, so I'm sorry if I don't get to respond to all of your emails personally. 

Monday- Our only solid appointment cancelled on us, but it was a good opportunity for Elder Leavitt and I to get to know the new assistant ward mission leader, Bro. Kongaika. He is a newlywed and a recent RM. Also, he is AWESOME. He is already doing so much to help us move the work forward here in Walnut. 

Tuesday- Had significant bike problems for most of the day (blown tire and tube, yippee!) But those were resolved by the evening and we had a good dinner with the Christopherson family, and an even better correlation with Bro. Kongaika. We are setting up practice lessons with the ward leadership to work on our teaching skills, then asking them to invite their non member friends to do the same thing for us. Is it too sneaky a way to teach nonmembers? Perhaps. But I think it will be effective. At the very least, I'll get to teach more often and really improve myself there. 

Wednesday- Made some good contact with some less active families. Several were not interested in coming back AT ALL. But one was! So we are going to start working with them, and hopefully we can bring back one of this ward's many lost sheep.

Thursday- We had a pretty good district meeting where we talked about improving our study skills/habits. Especially in personal study. There was a lot I already knew, but needed to be reminded of. As I've implemented the ideas in my study, there has been dramatic improvement. We also taught another lesson with Gary, who we started teaching on Sunday. We taught him at the church, and he actually thought that he was coming to attend a worship service. So that's a pretty good indicator of his commitment, right? We gave him a tour, showed him the font, and taught him the Plan of Salvation. He wants to get baptized, but recognized without us telling him that he will need to quit smoking. How awesome is that?! It's pretty awesome. 

Friday- We had a really great weekly planning session, one of the best I've been in since I got out here. If not the best. We tried to contact a referral, but he wasn't home. After that Rose and Stephan Bates, our only other investigators took us out to Golden Corral for dinner and a lesson. We taught the first few points of the Plan of Salvation, and committed them to come to church on Sunday.

Saturday- We had the ward Christmas brunch in the morning. That was pretty fun, none of our investigators showed up, but we did have quite a few less actives come out of the woodwork. After that we had to go to Covina to help out at their Christmas parade (it was required for the whole zone). I didn't actually see the parade, we just waved VIP cars back to the staging area after they finished the parade route. I did hear several marching bands though, so that was nice for my ears. On the way home we got transfer calls. Elder Leavitt got transferred to Glendale to whitewash and train. I already miss him quite a bit. It seems that as soon as I really hit stride with someone, one of us gets transferred. I'm still in the Creekside ward, and my new companion is Elder Ramirez.

Sunday- We finally had investigators come to church!!!! WHAAAAAAA. You have no idea how happy I was to see the Bates pull up to the building. Gary couldn't make it because he had promised his father that he would help him roof the house or something like that. But the Bates actually came! it's been 30 hours and I'm still bouncing off the walls about it. We and the sisters sang Tyler's song, "Before the Angels" in sacrament meeting. The ward really loved it! Several members asked for recordings, and were very surprised that such a good piece was written by my little brother. But they just don't know Tyler. It made me a very proud brother to help bring some of his music to life, and even more so to receive such high praise for it on his behalf. We are singing it again this Friday at the mission party
Sunday night we went to the mission farewell, which was pretty good. My trainer Elder DeBry is now AP, but I called that weeks ago. He's an amazing elder.

So I'll be in Creekside for the foreseeable future. However, we will be moving to a different members home on the 18th and stay there for 16 days. So mail (packages included) can continue to go to my address at 
403 Beverly Dr
Walnut, CA 91789

BUT if it is going to arrive after then, it will need to go to a different one, which I do not have at this time. I'll get that to people soon. (next week)

Love you all! Go do missionary work! 

Elder Whitney