Monday, February 29, 2016
To start off, my companion Elder Woolf is the best companion anyone can have, he does what I say 90% of the time and can play guitar, what more can I ask for! Here is how are week went.
Monday: Played some major B-ball with Elders Sill, Hunt, Weller, Sharp, and Woolf. It was probably great for me, because it felt like none us were good, so we were all even, that was great. Had tacos that night with the Ross' they were pretty chill, we invited them to write their testimonies in a BoM and they were all for it. Destroyed Elder Woolf in a game of chess!
Tuesday: District meeting, Elder Sill had us all in the district share a funny video and a story, you would be surprised with the videos I have made so far. After the meeting Elder Sill and I went on exchanges in the Tongan area, which covers the Seattle Mission and the Federal Way Mission, so I was out of mission for a couple of hours. we visited some Tongan potentials and they are the most nicest people you will ever meet. They give you a hug the first time they meet you! I loved it so much. We went to the Ward Mission Leaders house and as he was talking to us about the ward, he was making us sandwiches and we were eating them one after another, because part of the Tongan culture is you EAT Lots! I was full after the first sandwich. We then went to dinner with the Polukas and when we got there, the food wasn't ready so we played with the kids and their baby chicks, it was fun. Then we looked at the table and they made a lot of food, Chicken, Pork, Ca bobs, Hawaiian something, Mash potatoes, Rice, and a bunch of other stuff. Elder Sill just piles it in while I'm fighting my stomach. Visited other Potentials, then turned in for the night,
Wednesday: Woke up in the Tongan apartment, didn't eat breakfast, because I was still full from last night. Went to Lil'Tonga, but all the Tongans were still asleep sadly, so we drove and visited more potentials. Elder Sill bought me lunch at Jack in the Box. Then we re- exchanged. Elder Woolf missed me so bad, just a little separation anxiety from the Senior companion :) We saw JW's handing out fliers so we found another place to proselyte. Had some Ice cream to end off a good day.
Thursday: Super sunny day, so we contacted Alki Beach and while we were talking to a guy with a Rottweiler, a lady came up to us and gave us twenty bucks! :) We then taught Yeli and his kids the Plan of Salvation using primary techniques and it worked the kids understood the Plan of Salvation. Yeli is super spiritual and after we taught our lesson he admitted to feeling something good in his heart. He is so ready, he just needs to stop working on Sunday!
Friday: Did service for the local Food Bank for 3 hours, went looking for potentials when we ran into some members and chilled inside while it was raining, Brother and Sister Thomas were awesome and said we can come by anytime. Went out with Bro. Barnes and taught this Filipino lady named Jasmine about the BoM, she knows a lot about our church since most of her neighbors back in the Philippines were converted.
Saturday: Helped the Weber's move in to their new home, they just had us carry the easy stuff, since they were paying a carrying crew to carry the really heavy stuff. Made a burrito throwing some left overs on it and it turned out really well, I'm becoming a better cook if I do so say myself! Another sunny day so we contacted Alki beach again. We talked to a couple from New Zealand home of the Lord of the Rings. Then we talked to these gangsta looking dudes sitting by their Harleys wearing leather jackets. They we really cool guys with good questions about our church, we gave them a BoM and they said they would give it a little looksie, their names were Capuno and Smash. Went to the Ensign Symphony with Francen and it was awesome the theme was the road less traveled. They played some very classic classical music, then they played some disney music, we are not allowed to listen to any music but Hymns and Motab, but it was allowed at the symphony so it was awesome for the missionaries. they played "the Circle of Life" and received a standing ovation!
Sunday: Church went really well, we had a Linger Longer after church and it was really cool to get to know the ward more. While we were tracting we met this sassy lady named Brianna, she was cool because she thinks it's awesome what we do and how we reach out and help others. Then we met Skyler and he just invited us in and gave us some Apple Cider to drink and he showed us his pet Ferrets and let us hold them. The whole time he was talking about how he loves our church so much, but said he wasn't ready yet, so we taught him a little and gave him our phone number for if he ever wants to get together again.
This past week has been bright and happy and I assure you that I am having a great time in this area and with my companion. I pray that you all are having a fantastic time wherever you are! Love you all and a good night!
With Some Sugar, Elder Larson
Monday, February 22, 2016
Feb. 22nd, 2016
Dear one and all and all in one,
Let me start with the rundown of my week;
Monday: first p-day in West Seattle, we played B-ball with Elder Filimaua, a Samoan working in the Samoan ward, his comp. Elder Smith, a super big burly Elder you don't want to mess with, Elder Walton, regular sized and working in the Vashon Island Ward, and his Comp. Elder Francias, who was my MTC Comp. It was a really intense game but Elder Smith could not be beat, he can literally just drop the ball in the net. Afterwards, we had pizza with a recent convert Fransen, who is really cool and we can just be ourselves.
Tuesday: Had District meeting and we had to pick/drop off the Vashon Elders. It was Elder Sill's first District Meeting and it was awesome, he even asked me to give a training on what it means to have faith in Jesus Christ and his Atonement. At the end of the meeting we sang our mission song #266 "The time is far spent." We sang the second verse three times and after the second time, I was just dying with laughter at how nobody noticed or cared that we were singing the same verse. We then visited many potentials, but none were home or they were too busy. Dinner was with Bro. Munoco, who is mentally disabled, but a super cool guy and he can cook! When it came to our spiritual thought, he was just super into it and was bearing strong testimony, it was touching to say the least.
Wednesday: We dad a huge service project for a non-member, scraping moss off her shed, it was interesting and we personally felt like what we were doing was only making things worse, but she kept saying, good job, keep scraping, so we complied. Talked to an Investigator Kaydee, she is African-American, 25 yrs old and wants to find structure in her life. She said she wants to come to church but can't make it this Sunday, she is strongly interested though. Had dinner with Fransen again, because our original dinner had to cancel, so Fransen offered to feed us again, this time it was Chicken Tenders, so good and Fransen is so cool.
Thursday: Zone Conference, we left the Apartment at 7am and got to the meeting at 8am. We were trained specifically on being respectful and not being pushy especially when people are not interested, because that makes people think we are weird. Zone conference ended at 5pm and got home at 6:30pm, due to traffic. Taught Yeli(lee) at 7pm and Yeli is very spiritual. During our lesson, Elder Woolf started teaching Yeli's children and showing them pictures, while I continued teaching Yeli. I helped him understand why our church is organized in such a way that we follow today and about Joseph Smith. Both Elder Woolf and I felt good about the lessons, because if Yeli loses interest we can always try the kids.
Friday: was weird, no one home, ate Burger Boss for dinner, it makes really good Burgers
Saturday: So much happened and we met up with so many people. We did service for Bishop Every, dismantling their trampoline and raking the yard, he has two young daughters ages 3 and 6. The three year old was just hilarious, but when we went to share a lesson she got impatient, so Elder Woolf and I involved her greatly in our lesson and she enjoyed. It was fun. Since it was Arizona sunny today, we contacted at Alki Beach and it was super crowded Elder Woolf and I talked to maybe 150 people, like 140 of them blew us off, but we didn't care, we were just loving the sun. That night we met up with the Hoffman's, a Russian couple in our ward and we just had an amazing time getting to know them. We even played monopoly deal in Russia, Elder Woolf and I won a game, but we only played two games. We then shared a lesson on charity, because we were all getting selfish while playing. I was glad to meet them, they gave us some Ukrainian cake and it was tasty.
Sunday: I bore my testimony in Sacrament, because they needed someone to take up some time. Met everyone in the ward, but I don't remember anyone's name. I will work on that. Went to Member-Missionary-Fireside at the Kirkland Stake Center and saw Elder Hales and Elder Farr, but more excitingly saw Vicky and Maxine with Bishop Post and Bro. Jolley. That ended off the week just right!
Peace I leave unto you, Elder Larson
Monday, February 15, 2016
Dear one and allllllllllll,
I have entered a new realm entirely, my new area is West Seattle!
It is right by Mercer Island and is in a new zone, the Seattle Zone!
My last day on Mercer, Elder Farr and I had lunch with Gary's family, played soccer as a district, relaxed at Bro. Jacobson's house, said goodbye to Bishop, Bro. Jolley, Vicky, and her friend Maxine. It was a busy P-day.
Day of transfers, we squeezed five Elders and twelve suitcases in a van. Zone Leaders gave me a letter, which told me where I was spending the next six weeks. I was upset, because it seemed everybody was completely split up and I might not know anybody in my new zone. I met my new companion, Elder Woolf and he is only three months out, which means I'm senior companion now ;)
We also have a CAR in this area, that I now drive, it was really scary getting on the freeway after not driving for 6 months, but I'm back to my old self now, so it's good, but you might want to pray for me that I don't get into a car crash! I met the Bishop and the ward missionaries and they are all fired up about getting some missionary work done. My district leader is Elder Sill, I love Elder Sill he is so nice and he and his companion are serving in the Tongan Ward, if you don't know anything about Tongans, look it up, they give missionaries so much food and if you don't eat it, they will be offended. I can't wait to go on exchanges and eat with some Tongans. A cool thing about West Seattle is there is a beach, so some beautiful views. The people are so different, most are more willing to talk to us than on Mercer, people here are so humble. I have a very good feeling about this area and we are teaching some very interesting people.
I also killed my Greenie last Friday by burning a tie (it was an old tie left in the apartment, don't worry about it)
This area has a lot of restaurants, we ate at Burger Boss and had a burger with ham/cheese/Bacon on it, I can't wait to try some new things here!
Elder Woolf has some health issues, so that’s why we have a car, all thanks to him. He is really good at starting conversations, which is great, because I'm weak in that area and we can both just be our selves around each other!
Well I love you all and I will share more experiences next time!
With great Pleasure, Elder Matt R. Larson
Monday, February 8, 2016
Dear My Beloved Family, Friends, and Enemies,
This week is transfers and I have just been told last night that... I'm being transferred out of Zone! I'm just full of emotions, being in an area for almost 6 months does that to you!
We got the call last night and I was surprised to hear that they are Whitewashing Mercer Island, which means Elder Farr and I are both leaving. It feels weird, we just have so much going on in this area, but the Lord knows best and it's time I move on to better things, thanks to Mercer Island I have learned not to internalize rejection, my testimony has grown ten fold, and now I am opposite of shy and not talkative, to talking to everybody and anybody!
One thing that has really helped my testimony being here is, I have always seen the great works this church did, even though growing up I didn't believe God, but I kept to it, because I knew in my heart that this Church if anything brought me happiness and now I have a full faith in a loving Heavenly Father. It's strange though leaving Mercer Island, I feel as if I built many friendships with Members and Non-members alike. Elder Farr and I went tracting with Conner Bernal, who just got off his mission and he said that if anything Elder Farr and I are hardworking, we take rejection well, and we are full of the spirit. It made me feel good that he said that, him being an Assistant on his mission. Elder Farr and I started a lot of good things on this Island and I just hope the next missionaries will continue those good works.
This past week on Wednesday, it was raining hard and right after Thrift Shop all our appointments cancelled, so we were stuck in the Rain for 2 hours. We would of had dinner, but no member signed up for that night, which happens rarely mind you, but we felt impressed to visit the Garrisons, a Member family. Our Mission doesn't want us visiting members unless we scheduled an appointment with them, but you know, what's more important, follow the rules or the Spirit? We knocked on the door and Sister Garrison opened door exclaiming "OH John the Elders are here!", her son John yelled "That's Great I have two steaks on the Grill just for you!” Elder Farr and I were speechless, like what was going on. They felt prompted to cook steak and make a dinner for four when it was just the two of them. After dinner and a lesson, Sister Garrison asked Elder Farr to give her a blessing and Elder Farr gave a beautiful blessing that Heavenly Father wanted her to have. I am thankful to have followed the spirit that night, because everyone that night felt blessed!
Not many stories this week, just the usual, going around teaching people, having fun, and building my testimony, nothing new. Anyways I love you all and expect to hear from Josh next week about his life and keep sending pics I love them!
With Heavenly Love, Elder Larson (Washington Seattle Mission Representative!!!)
Monday, February 1, 2016
This week Elder Farr and I moved the heaviest couch known to man. If Elder Farr and I were not two young strong men, we would of never pulled this off. How did we get ourselves stuck in this situation? It was right after we emailed, we were leaving the library when we saw this old guy holding a box of books. Elder Farr doomed us by opening the door for this man, the man then asked us if we would help him move his couch and we said yes, because we are two buff individuals, a couch is nothing, boy was I wrong. The next day we hoisted this couch into a U haul truck and it took us thirty minutes. It was as if it was made of steel, we were so tired, so the guy said lets deliver this tomorrow. The day after that he drove us to Redmond, he said we were going to Bellevue, Redmond is out of Zone and how he got there was taking a road in Everett as a shortcut, Everett is out of Mission too. We called our District Leader and he said it was alright, but don't let it happen again. After we moved this guy's couch, he drove us home and was trying to pay us! We were both like it's okay this is service, you don't need to pay us, but he was a very stubborn man, I might also mention that his name is Steven. In the end Steven gave us Fifty big ones, which we gave immediately to the church, if anything this whole experience taught me not to open doors for people, because you will end up moving something heavy out of mission.
For Realz this week was great, we received so much food, that we don't even need to shop today. On Saturday, last week we had a baptism, but it was for a member family not an investigator. Elder Farr was asked to say the closing prayer and I was asked to lead the music. I can do 2 and 4 measures but that's it, yet our songs were all six measures, so I looked unprofessional. Luckily everybody was craning their necks towards the hymn books instead of at me so nobody noticed. We had Vicky and her friend Maxine come and they thought the whole baptism thing was beautiful, so I joked and said that could be you someday, which I mean, I hope they get baptized some day. The baptism was for Alessandra Selden. I love the Selden family it is always a Spanish party when they are around or should I say Fiesta, I yi yi yi yi hey! After the baptism there was so much food, my favorite was the Epinadas! We met one of the Seldens non-member friends and this guy looks completely casual, yet he is super rich and owns the Subway on the Island. At church we had the Police come in and give a special lesson on Emergency Preparedness it was so cool. Not too many stories on tracting this time. It feels like nobody wants to talk to us for the past few weeks, but Elder Farr and I are satisfied to know we are doing our best! I loves you all straight from my heart!
Love, Elder Larson