England London Mission

England London Mission

Monday, March 31, 2014

Beautiful Spring

This week was a good week.   Tuesday we checked back with an investigator we haven’t been able to see for couple weeks.  We went with a member, he’s doing pretty good- we will continue to work with him.

We had a meeting with President Jordan this week, it was really good.   He explained that facebook was a new way of doing missionary work, but it doesn’t replace and will not replace other efforts as well.  We each created a new facebook account as missionaries.  We are only allowed to add friends in our mission boundaries and more specifically to focus on people in our assigned areas at that time.  We are allowed a maximum of one hour a day every day.  Not something we have to do, but something we are encouraged to do.  We are the first mission outside the United States to be using facebook.  So that is pretty exciting.    For now, we add the members and post 1 or 2 times per week.  Hopefully leading to some online lessons.
Because you can’t be my friends on facebook, I will share my favorite postings with you via email.  

"The family is the most important social unit of all time and eternity. It was designed this way by our Heavenly Father, who some people call God, the supreme creator, or as Aaron has stated in Alma 22:10 "He is that Great Spirit". The family is being attacked by Satan more than ever at this time. Living day prophets have spoken and testified that the way to have a successful marriage is as follows: "Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities." - The Family: A Proclamation to the World. I know that these things are true and that they are inspired of Heavenly Father to living day prophets and apostles on the earth today."       

Then I posted a link to the family proclamation. It’s a really cool thing and it is going to be so amazing for missionary work, it’s the best thing for this day and time to share though social media.  President Uchtdorf, in 2011, gave a talk about sharing the gospel through the internet, talking about texting and tweeting and the youth in these days using their thumbs faster than some people in the old days could think.

Wednesday we spent the day finding.  Thursday we headed to a neighboring area trying to follow up with a family we had met there.  No luck in catching up with them. We will keep trying.  As we were heading home that evening, we got a call from another gentleman.  He wanted us to come and give his child a priesthood blessing.  We were able to do that and the child was feeling better in the morning. 

Friday was mostly a day of planning for the coming week and we were able to volunteer at the local service organization for awhile. 

Our soccer/football game on Saturday is gaining more popularity. This week we had four missionaries, four members and four others.   It was pretty fun! 

Yesterday we gave a lesson in church on how the ward members could help the missionaries in finding more people to teach.  It was really good.   We introduced them to facebook and how we are using it.  It seemed to get the members excited as well.

Last night we went to supper with a family in the ward.  They invited us to come to watch General Conference with them this weekend as well.   Here you have to stream General Conference on the internet or go to one of the main church buildings to watch it on satellite.   Since the buildings are quite some ways from us, they invited us to come to their house and watch.  With the time difference, we watch conference at really odd hours here.   It should be really good. 

 This week we switched the clocks ahead and so now we have more sunlight in the evenings, I like it a lot. 

We visited these beautiful gardens this week. 

This was a good week.  Love, Elder Stevenson

Monday, March 24, 2014

Slow Week

Kind of a slower week this week. And a short one because emails didn’t come out until Tuesday last week.  Then a day for transfers, and a day for District meetings.   We are still working with the same people.  Trying to keep in contact with them.  On the way to District meetings this week one of my previous companions had been transferred into the District, so we were able to catch up some.  He talked about a previous area where we had served. Things are really going well there with 4 investigators getting really close to baptism.  That was the new area I had help opened up, so it was really exciting to see that area is continuing to progress.

 We are planning a special 5th Sunday lesson in our ward to give the members some ideas in approaching their friends in a less pushy way.   Going to show some videos to show examples and doing some role playing.  The soccer game for the ward went well this week, it was pretty fun!  

My new companion is pretty cool and we get along super well, and joke a lot.  He actually reminds me of one of Kenny’s companions.  I told my companion that I needed to get a hair cut.  He said he could cut it for me, he cuts his own.  I was a little worried, but he trimmed his own and it looked okay, so I let him do mine.  I wanted a 2 on the sides blended to a 4 on top.  Ended up with a nice buzz job, which will be easy to take care of.  

Also some fun shots from the country side.

Looks like we are probably going to start using Facebook in our mission soon. We are supposed to get trained in it tomorrow.  We already got the instruction book for how to do it.  Really excited for that chance, it sounds really fun to do. 

Hope all goes well this week.   Love, Elder Casey Stevenson

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Staying Put!

I am staying here and getting a new companion.  Hope to stay here for a couple more transfers. 

It’s crazy to think that this much of my mission has already gone.  I was emailing today and thought in 15 months I will be home- then I thought 15 months is short!  But it has been wonderful.

I passed my theory test on Monday, so just have the practical driving test to finish before getting an official license.  I still have to get that set up.

Monday we played futball- soccer, as we Americans call it, with the guys in the district.  It was really fun.  We are trying to get a soccer game started each week with the ward members on Saturdays.  This week was the first one for the ward.  Just having the members come and invite their friends and investigators to come as well.  We are hoping that this week will pick up even more with it.  The weather was been really warm, and somewhat dry.

Tracting experiences this week- We were out one night and ran into a preacher and had about a 45 minute chat with him. That’s the third preacher I have been able to visit with in this area so far.   Another guy stopped us and wanted to know if we were Americans.  I said yep- it’s my accent.  We visited for a few minutes and he invited us to see something.  He opened his garage and there was a 1920’s car fully restored in there. His dad had bought it new and they have kept it in the family.  It was really cool. 
Service opportunities- YEAH!  We did some service for a couple in the ward. They are taking out a flower bed and planting it to grass.  We took out the flowers, and while my companion mowed the lawn, I proceeded to dig the dirt 12 inches deep and just mix it all up.  While doing that, the guy said you really are a farmer.  I said yep- a true farmer that plants things.    We also found out that a YMCA charity shop has opened up in our area.  So we went in there to volunteer to help. We will be working there once a week for an hour or so.  It has been fun so far.  When we first signed up we went out with the delivery guy and picked up some couches.  Then this week we put books on the shelves and sorted things.  It should be a lot of fun to help there.

We have been trying to keep in touch with our investigators as well.  One wasn’t home and the phone was working, but we will keep trying.  Another just finished renovating his living room, which is really nice- we had a good visit with him.  Had an exchange with the Zone Leader again this week- it was a good time!

While studying this week, I came across a thing by Harold B Lee.  He was talking about revelation and said, “Revelation comes when we are relaxed and not under pressure of appointments.”

Other than that- nothing too new this week.  Just happy to be staying, we have some things planned!
Love, Elder Stevenson

Mom:    We also got a letter from him this week and he said that he finally found out the Chinese lady was baptized in his previous area. 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Finding paid off!

It was an alright week this week.  On Tuesday we had zone meeting so spent most of the day travelling, but it was a good meeting.   Wednesday we went to the neighboring town again.   While there we were able to see a potential investigator- who is now a new investigator. We had a great lesson with her.  It started on the doorstep and we were invited in.  As the discussion continued, we ended up talking with her mom and brother. The mom said she wasn’t really interested, the daughter was interested and wanted to start reading the Book of Mormon;  and the son said he’s possibly interested.   Finally all our finding has paid off.

We stopped by to see another lady we have been checking on about every other week and mowed her lawn.  When her husband got home we were able to visit with both of them a little about the church. A really nice family.

We had planned to get the car serviced on Thursday and called to make the appointment.  11:00 would work great for us and it would take 30 minutes- perfect.  We got there at 11:00 and they thought we were coming at 8:30- and also informed us it would take two hours.  We didn’t have time for that, the service tech agreed to have us come back at 1:00 for a one hour service job.  We went to our appointment and came back after lunch.  It still took them an hour and a half to service the car. 

We had been planning to do service work on this day anyway.  So we were in our service clothes when we went to service the car.   Once it was done, we just decided to continue the service tracting.   You just go around seeing if anyone needs service, normally in places were elderly people live.  So we did that most of the afternoon. We cleaned up yards and such.   Love to do service.

Friday we had to go pick up the Assistant to the President for the workover.  There were three trading places, so we all agreed to meet in a central location and go from there.  The workover was really good. This Elder is headed home in two weeks and so was really laid back and cool with things.  We had a good workover with him.   On Saturday we headed back to the city to trade back.  And finished up the day with some more finding.

Sunday both my companion and I had to give talks in church.  About Christlike love.  They went well.  We had lunch with a family from the ward.  They had just moved into the area. They live in one of those traditional looking English homes you see on t.v. with the back garden all fenced in with bricks and such. It was really nice.  

Taking my theory test for driving today. And then playing soccer with the elders in the Zone. 
Thanks for all the love and support and all the prayers.

Love Elder Stevenson

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A little under the weather....

Another week and a lot of finding!  On Monday we had a normal p-day for the most part.  We played some soccer, or football as they call it here.  Then we were able to go and do some service for a family in the ward.  We cleaned up their wood shop.    By the evening I wasn’t feeling that good.  Felt even worse on Tuesday morning with a fever, sore throat and headache, but following study time we headed out and did a little street contacting.   I got some Cold and Flu Relieve and headed back to the apartment for lunch and a nap, hoping that would help.  We had an appointment at 1:30, but he cancelled, so we headed back to the flat and I slept most of the rest of the day.  By morning the fever was lower, I was feeling somewhat better, and so we headed to the neighboring town for some appointments we had set up there.  I wasn’t going to just stay in the flat again that day and miss the lessons.   Wednesday we headed back to the neighboring area for some other appointments.  We were happy to hear one of the guys we had been working with had gotten a new job and was planning to come back to church soon.   The new family we were planning to meet had something come up, but we are hopeful we will be able to catch them this week.

District meeting on Thursday, so a day of traveling to and from meetings.  And three of us Elders were not feeling that good as we spent the day traveling.   We have one District Leader and two Zone Leaders for the area.   Each transfer we have at least 2 splits with the District Leader.  The District Leader will spend time with each companion separately.  The other companion spends the time working with the District Leader’s companion.   Since there are two Zone Leaders, our companionship just splits and one with each of the Zone Leaders.  Occasionally the Zone Leader will go with the companionship to see how they work together as a companionship.  Usually have one or two Zone Leader splits per transfer.   The workovers are for 24 hours.  They will start following morning studies and go 24 hours until after the morning study.  A chance to see all aspects of the missionary’s day.      

Saturday was mostly a day of tracting.  When tracting door after door you have a lot of time to just think about life and such.   It can be a pretty long mental day, but I love it.  Sunday as we were headed to church a member called and asked if I could teach the Priesthood lesson as he was sick.  I said sure.  Luckily it was on a General Conference talk that I heard a few times.   Then out for some more tracting before dinner with a family in the ward.  

This Monday we were invited to go to the air force base as one of the members was being promoted to Major.  He has some friends he wanted us to meet.  It was cool to see it and go through the main building of the base where they are stationed. 

A little bored last night and looked up Island Park on the GPS.

With one gentleman of another faith this week, we were able to share some basic beliefs.  In trying to explain how the Holy Ghost can influence those who are seeking the truth and how the Holy Ghost can become a constant companion following baptism and confirmation.  And also share my testimony of the need for living prophets and apostles to lead and guide His church on this earth today.

 Here’s another great talk.

Love, Elder Stevenson