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!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Mon. Jan 27: Week something of transfer something else

*Sorry for not getting this posted sooner.  We can't get to this blog without a VPN and the VPN has not been working all week.*

Hello all! I hope you're all doing fantastically and what not. People here have been crazy sick all the time, so I also hope you're all healthy :)

Monday 01/20- After our various p-day shenanigans and a hilarious incident with a juice box from 1999 and Elder Justensen, we went to a referral that the Helbergs gave us. We had been there last week, and the son expressed pretty high interest in learning about the church, but needed to talk to his parents about it first. So, we went there to find the results. Well. The Dad answered the door. Turns out they attend the church in the area that is the largest creator and distributor of anti-Mormon literature in the world. He said that our belief that we can literally all become like God was ridiculous and false. I was like "wellllllll, Psalms 82:6 pretty much says we can." He said I was misquoting it (was not http://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/ps/82?lang=eng) and that we misinterpreted everything in the Bible. (An indirect denial of Christ, but hey, that's no big deal, right?) We told him that we were sorry he felt that way, but we know that what we believe is true. And that was that. Then we visited a less-active member in the ward who invited us in, gave us a lecture on why he won't come to church, and then asked us to leave. He actually made my companion pretty upset. 

Tuesday- In the afternoon we did a service project for a less active/part member household. Lots and lots of weeding. It was fun though, and Elder justensen really enjoyed the chance to do some manual labor again. They really appreciated it though, and hopefully we can make something happen there because of it. Service is great! Tuesday night, we had another lesson with Efrain. We taught him the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and then had a very long talk geared towards trying to set a goal date for his baptism. When we left he still hadn't set a date, but right after we finished planning that night he called us and said that he wanted to set a date the next time we had a lesson! Just shows that the Spirit keeps teaching when the missionaries are gone. 

Wednesday- In the afternoon our only appointment for the day cancelled, so we tried some less actives. Didn't have much luck. Elder Justensen really hates the ones who open the door, see us, and close it without saying anything. I just think it's pretty sad. Wednesday night we were both getting pretty sick so we retired early so that hopefully we would be feeling better for the morrow. 

Thursday- Our plan to try and dodge the sickness did not prevail. I was about as sick as sick gets and we didn't go out at all. I slept just about all day. Don't worry though, now we are both fine. 

Friday- Friday morning a potential investigator texted us saying she wasn't interested anymore and that she didn't want to meet that afternoon. Which was a bummer. But we were both not nearly as sick as we were yesterday and that was a blessing. We did our weekly planning in the afternoon, and that night we had a birthday party for Efrain! It was cool, because they just invited us and two other sets of missionaries. After some delicious cheesecake we sang primary songs and a few hymns. It was very fun, and Efrain really enjoyed it. 

Saturday- Saturday morning Elder J was feeling pretty sick again, so I read most of the synoptic gospels while he slept for a few hours. We went in the afternoon and guess who we finally found again. The Bates! Hooray! We helped move a very heavy table out of their house and a new one in. It was a really great chance to reconnect with them. Saturday night we talked to a less active who was in the Army for 11 years. He was real nice to us, didn't have anything negative to say about the church (which is unusual round here) so I have high hopes that we can start teaching him this week. 

Sunday- We had Efrain and the Duenas family at church again. Bro Peck taught gospel principles which really made Efrain happy. He really loved Bro Peck when he first came but hadn't seen him ever since then because Bro Peck had been out of town. So that was good. After Church we did some role-plays with some of the RM's in the singles ward. We were practicing contacting, and one of them took the "I believe in science" route. Which is not altogether uncommon. I decided to try something I'd never tried before. I cited the 2nd law which says that in an isolated system, entrapy only increases. Yet, if one subscribes to any of the scientific models of the origins of the Earth and life, they would be forced to admit that entrapy has not increased on our planet over time, but rather has decreased. Clearly something isn't right there! My own personal belief is that the 2nd law is true, but that the traditional theory of the Earth as an isolated system is incorrect. And why aren't we an isolated system? Because God is there! Because He plays a role in everything that happens in our universe. Because His Son created the Earth. Admittedly, I used it on a member only pretending to be a nonmember, but still. I'm going to officially use it on the streets now. 

Sunday evening the ward had a double baptism for children of record. We went even though none of our investigators were planning on going. It turned out to be a very good thing though, both families really appreciated that we were there, as did the Bishop. Baptisms are pretty great. 

That's where things are at on my end. Not a lot of lessons, but that's because of illness. this next week should be pretty sweet. Hopefully we are able to set Efrain with a baptismal date tonight! I love you all, keep being awesome :)

Elder Whitney