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!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Dec. 23, 2013

Hello all!

Merry Christmas to you all! Thank you so much for all the cards and gifts. I have been a good Elder, and not opened the gifts yet. I have quite a large pile of them under the little tree that Brooke sent to me. 

On to the week

Monday 12/16: Had a zone activity for pday at the stake center in Hacienda Heights. One of the elders from my MTC district is in the zone so it was fun to hang out with him a bit. Monday night we taught a recent convert named Orion. He is 10 years old, and very smart. We shared the restoration with him, just to make sure he hasn't forgotten too many important things. His family situation is such that he usually doesn't make it to church. Sadness. But, he was glad to see us, and still believes.

Tuesday: Had our morning lesson cancel on us (again). Then we went back to our pad with the Helbergs to pack for the move to the Snyders. We had a good dinner with a sister in the ward who has to work a lot on Sundays during the holidays. She actually got one of her unbaptized sons to come to churchthis Sunday, that was cool. In the evening we taught Jose, a less active convert. He's been a member for almost 20 years, but hasn't been to church consistently for a long time. We are going to be teaching him pretty regularly.

Wednesday: We moved to the Snyder's home in the morning. Then we took a bunch of buses, trying to find people to talk to and to get to the "outer darkness" areas of the ward boundaries. We made really good contact with a less active named Brad, who hasn't been in a church in about a decade. He still has a strong testimony (made me feel the spirit anyways) and his conversion story is pretty cool. He also has really good friends who are still in the ward. So, with the wards help I think we can bring him back before the end of the transfer. 

Thursday: Thursday was kind of nuts. We had zone meeting at the stake center, which was really good. I got to see Elder DeBry, which I greatly enjoyed. He loves to show off the watch that his 'son' got him from China (thanks mom and dad!). Then we had to do some funky exchanges. Elder Ramirez and another elder got called into the office to get fitted for suits that were being gifted to the mission by a member in Glendale. So I went with the zone leaders for the rest of the night. I actually really liked being with the zone leaders, I like them a lot. They're really great missionaries. 

FridayFriday was a total bummer by the time we were having dinner. One of our really good potentials that we've been trying to teach since before I got to the area is going into full hospice care and will probably pass into eternity by the end of January :( Then the Bates, who were progressing, cancelled our evening appointment and asked us not to stop by without an actual appointment. No idea what happened there. BUT! That evening we found Andre and Lina! They waved Elder Leavitt and I down a few weeks ago and told us that we needed to start teaching them. This was the first time we found them since then. They are still really interested. Andre sang us some David Bowie with his guitar, and I sang some Beatles with him. Not totally missionary appropriate? Maybe. A valid way of building a strong relationship with new investigators? Totally. So that made Friday pretty awesome.

Saturday: We had a correlation with the Sisters and the assistant ward mission leader in the morning. That afternoon we had Lisa cancel on us again (see Tuesday). We had some brief contact with Andre and Lina again, made sure that their ride to church on Sunday was all set. We spent the rest of the day talking to closed doors, a class missionary past time. 

Sunday: So Andre and Lina didn't show up for church. Neither did anyone else we have been teaching. This made me very sad. However, we had some great discussions with Bro Peck (ward mission leader) about how to press on with the work here in Creekside. The Christmas program in Sacrament was very good, several tearjerkers in the musical numbers.
We had dinner at the Helbergs, which made sister Helberg very happy. She calls us her boys, and while she loves having family for the holidays wishes her Elders could be there too. She's a wonderful woman. We spent Sunday evening finding some less actives. We actually made good contact with two and less than good with another. One of the good ones set up an appointment with us, and was very open with us and genuine. That is also a part member family, so hopefully we get some new investigators in that household and eventually bring them to the temple. 

Here is my little Christmas tree!

Inline image 1

Merry Christmas!