It’s been a pretty good week. A lot of finding! We had a potential investigator that we found the first week here. She just got back from holiday and we went to see her again this week. We had a really good lesson about the restoration. She accepted baptism conditionally- meaning when she comes to know these things are true, she will follow the example set by Jesus Christ and be baptized. That was good. There was a young man who had been taught as a teenager some years ago, his parents are members. We went to what we thought was his address. It was not. So we asked the lady there if she knew of anyone who could use some service. She pointed across the street to another apartment. We went there, and a young man opened the door and said, hey missionaries. Come to find out, he was the one we were looking for in the first place. He had moved across the street a couple years ago. We visited with him some. He said he’d promised his dad he would come to church and so said he would see us on Sunday. When we said it was conference, he wasn’t so sure, maybe he’d come the next week. But we don’t have church the next week because our building is closed. So he agreed to come to at least part of conference. There are a couple other investigators who were taught about 5 years ago we are going to work with. And we tracted into a couple who recently lost their son-in-law and have a lot of questions about the hereafter. So a good group of people to be working with! Work is really picking up. Yeah! Glad I am staying!
Last P-day we were able to go to London for a little sightseeing. We went to Buckingham Palace and Camden. It was fun. I also got a chance to take a picture of the huge ferris wheel we saw in the panoramic view of London.
I finished my driver’s training and will be able to drive for another 9 months on my US drivers license. But they said there is no reason to wait and get it then. So I will continue and work on getting it by my six month mark. I was really nervous to drive, it’s a little strange. The speed limit is mostly 30 miles per hour, but it seemed really fast sometimes. I missed driving, it felt good to drive again!
Up until about a week ago, the main reason I was staying on the mission was because I knew dad would kill me if I came home. (haha) But as more and more time goes on, I am starting to like it more and more. Getting less and less homesick, still miss home, but getting settled into the field. I have already gotten to the 3 month mark. It has been said the 3 month mark is a remarkable change for a lot of missionaries. And it was a good turning point for me. I know that I will continue to have some hard times to come on my mission. I don’t think that will ever end. But I have really learned a lot more about the gospel, relying on the Spirit and just everything. I never imagined I would grow up this much, this fast.
For the first twelve weeks of your mission, you have an extra hour of study every day. There is a set curriculum to study based on Preach My Gospel and other key study topics. Here the training is sometimes split between two trainers. The first trainer for the first six weeks and the follow up trainer for the last. The trainer does the teaching of the twelve week course for the most part. Once the twelve weeks are up, that’s the end of the extra time studying, until one becomes the trainer and then they do the teaching portion for the training and so an extra hour of study again for that six or twelve weeks.
Zone meetings are just for our one zone. The Zone leaders do the training there. Zone conferences are held every other transfer. Three zones come together and meet at the Hyde Park, Central Office. President Jordan and the AP’s do the training at Zone Conferences.
A lot of walking. Really good for me. I like being more active again. I haven’t weighed myself since I got here, but my pants seem to be a little looser around the waist. The other day we walked out to what we thought was a university to find some college students. It ended up being a research center. But the walk was amazing. It was a paved pathway through fields and forest. It was great, I got some pictures. I miss the farm land.
Conference will be a little different because of the time change. It is broadcast here in the church. The Saturday morning session is at 5 Saturday night, priesthood session at 10 Sunday Morning, 1 pm is the Saturday afternoon session; at 5 pm is the Sunday morning session. World Report is at 3pm and we will watch Sunday afternoon session later, hopefully they record it.
Funny experiences- One day I was talking with an Irish gentleman. I don’t know what happened, but it took me for a turn. I noticed my voice accent change, to something, I don’t know what it was. Another time a couple of kids came up and said their mom wanted to talk with us. We followed them to the house and they were just kidding with us. When we got there, their mother was not interested at all and slammed the door in our faces.
Fish and chips are said to be a favorite in England. Chips are actually what we would call French fries at home, didn’t know that until I got here. The fish is breaded fish. I haven’t had the amazing stuff yet. But they say towards the coast, in Dover, the fish and chips are amazing. Dover is on the ocean, the lowest south you can go in our mission. It’s kind of like a dream spot for missionaries in this mission.
Recommended Reading- His Grace is Sufficient- Brad Wilcox, September Ensign, page 35. It’s way good!
There are about 25 new missionaries coming this transfer. My advice to those headed out on missions soon, or those getting ready for a mission would be ---to get off the electronics. They are useless. I had started cutting back my own texting before I came out, and it helped a lot when I got out.
I am still missing about everything about the farm, except now that it’s getting cold, I won’t be missing pumping out the mainlines. I think that’s when Kenny truly started to realized he wanted to stay on the farm, when he got out into the mission field and missed it that much- like I am.
Love, Elder Stevenson
P.S. from Tammy-- He loves getting regular mail- a nice surprise to get a card or letter during the week, and not just on p-day! He said it gives him more strength throughout the middle of the week. He is trying to respond to everyone’s letters and e-mail, but sometimes doesn’t have a lot of time to email, so is trying to write more letters. He says he’s written more on his mission than ever in his life! Even if he doesn’t respond to every letter, know that he loves receiving them! Thanks to everyone for their continued support!