Come Follow Me

Come Follow Me
"And he saith unto them, "Come and follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." (Matt. 4:19) As the New Year begins, we, the members of the Willow Wood Ward, invite you to Come and Follow Him!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Elder Seth Garner

Tue, 9 Dec 2014 11:19


Well, here we are, another week come and gone. It was a good week last week! We had Zach Shepherd's baptism this last Saturday. It is always such an incredible thing to be able to witness a baptism, which I was privileged to see many, especially serving at the MCRD. Zach was so grateful for the experience. He asked us that the baptismal service be small, with not too many people and fairly simple. It definitely was! There were about seven people there to see Zach get baptized. The Spirit was felt very powerfully. Every time I see a baptism, I tend to envy the person for the experience they have just had and what it means to them. Not in a bad way, I always just think about how pure they are and how they now have this fresh new start... And then I think, well hey! I get to feel that ALL THE TIME, because of the Atonement. Every time the Atonement is used fully, it brings a feeling of relief, joy, and a fresh new start. How lucky are we that we get to experience that on a daily basis? Though we have covenanted with God, some of us long ago, that we will strive our best to keep His commandments, the same thing applies to us today with sincere repentance and partaking of the sacrament at church. Zach received the Gift of The Holy Ghost the following Sunday. He is going to do so great! He has such great desires, and wants to learn so much more about the gospel. He will be leaving back to Missouri where his five kids are, and I am excited for him to share the gospel with them!

I have been trying to learn much more about the Atonement lately... It is difficult, and well, downright impossible to learn everything there is to know about Christ's sacrifice for us. It is unfathomable, incomprehensible, and unimaginable to think of what the Savior went through. But we can know what he went through us individually. Many of us think of the Atonement as something to be used when we make a mistake. But I think we often overlook the Enabling power of the Atonement. The Atonement not only helps us overcome sin and weakness, but it helps us become the best people we could possibly be. I am not a bad person, and I am certainly not a great person either, but I can use the Atonement in my life everyday to become an even better person. And it is almost guaranteed to have a heavy burden at any point in your life. That is necessary for us to grow and become better people. But the only way to do that well, is through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The Atonement makes bad men good, and good men better.

Well, I know that the Lord has some awesome miracles in store for us this next week! It is going to be a blast! Have a great week!

        Elder Garner 

Elder Seth Garner

                                                          Christmas carols with the banjo!!
Tue, 2 Dec 2014 12:28:

Happy December!


Well, I cannot believe that it is now the month of December... You would not believe the amount of Christmas lights that are already up! It is funny to me to see people's homes decorated with massive blow up Santa's, reindeer, and lights galore, accompanied with 70 degree weather and palm trees. Ohhh, good old Southern California.

                                             Santa's reindeer???

Along with the wonderful holiday of Christmas (which is often very commercialized), we have been given a specific assignment for this month. I am sure that you all have already had an earful about it, but it is a Christmas initiative that the church has put on, which is hopefully going to be a very big deal. It is a video that helps us understand Christmas a little better, and that God gave us much more than just a few wrapped gifts that are temporal, but He gave us a gift that would effect us eternally. Jesus Christ was given to all, so that all may have everlasting life. What gift is better than that? I think I am privileged to be a missionary during this time of year, because I get to reflect on the birth (and life) of the Savior every day, and not only that, but I get to share this gift with all I come in contact with. Honestly, I have had the best Christmas experiences while on my mission, because I am not wrapped up in the worldly meaning of Christmas, and I have been able to focus on its true meaning... Sounds a bit cheesy, but it is true!

This past week was great! I have been doing well, and Elder Pimsuwan is doing fantastic! His English continues to blow me away, and not to mention everyone else who finds out he has only been speaking English for a month. We had an opportunity to participate in the baptism for a child of record in the ward. There were about fifteen non-members there, and we taught about Christ right after the ordinance. Elder Pimsuwan was a bit nervous before, but he did awesome! It has been so great to see him grow and step outside his comfort zone... It makes me think a lot about the beginning of my mission and how timid I must have been.

I SO look forward to this week because it is going to be GREAT! Our investigator Zach Sheperd should be getting baptized on Saturday. Man, he has been so amazing! I asked him a bit more about how he found the church and he told me his story, which is pretty amazing. While he was serving in Afghanistan, getting shot at and shooting back, rockets flying by every day, he felt the need to find a chaplain. For those of you who do not know what a chaplain is, it is somebody in a branch in the military who is there for any spiritual need. So, kind of like a church leader for a certain religion where there is no opportunity to attend church. Zach sat down with a Protestant chaplain, who told him "A, B, and C", and it just didn't sit well with him. He later became aware of a Mormon guy in the army who just had the best attitude ever. It impressed Zach very much, and he just thought that the guy was amazing, having the best attitude while in the worst situation. He decided to sit down with another chaplain, and lo and behold, it was a Mormon chaplain! Which, by the way, is very rare. The Mormon chaplain told him "A, B, and C", the exact same thing that the Protestant chaplain had said... But this time, it totally clicked with him! For some reason, it just sounded right coming from the LDS chaplain instead of the other guy, and with the image of the Mormon guy in the army, it gave him a totally different perspective. Upon arriving home and being stationed in Chicago, he got on and ordered a Book of Mormon. He had been reading it for eighteen months, and finally decided to go to church when he got re stationed in San Diego. He has such a solid testimony, and is ready to get baptized! Zach Sheperd is the MAN!

Well, goodbye for now! I have to run, I hope that all went well for Thanksgiving, and I hope that all goes well for this Christmas season!

        Elder Garner

Elder Seth Garner

December 18, 2014


Another whirlwind of a week has flown right by, filled with miracles and excitement!  Gee, I sure do love being a missionary. I have been doing great, and I feel better than ever, happy, healthy, and just SO excited!  Elder Pimsuwan is doing great, Spring Valley is rockin', and life is good!  Our apartment isn't filled with TOO many cockroaches and rats, which is nice... Hehe,  I saw a rat run out from under the fridge last night and I about screamed like a little girl.

Elder Pimsuwan has been doing great. His English is incredible! I see him improve daily, and it still blows my mind that he has only been speaking for about four weeks now.  After we taught a Restoration lesson, Elder Pimsuwan was so excited and told me that he had never imagined being able to convey the Spirit that well speaking English! Haha, it was a sweet moment. The Gift of Tongues and Interpretation of Tongues has been such a blessing in sharing the gospel.  I try to help out as much as I can to teach him and help him understand the English language, but I know that I am not the main teacher on that one.  He was itching to speak some Thai though, and luckily we got permission to go with the Laotian missionaries to visit a Thai family they were teaching.  Elder Pimsuwan was spouting out the Thai like none other, and after we left, the Lao elders were able to get them with baptismal dates.  So, that was an interesting experience!  Not the first time I have sat in a lesson where everyone is speaking an out of this world language and I am the only one that can't understand!

There has been a man coming to church for the past couple of weeks that we hadn't been able to begin teaching. He is from Missouri, he is in the Navy, and he has been reading the Book of Mormon on his own for the past year.  His name is Zachary Sheperd.  We had been trying to get over there to teach him, but he just couldn't find the time with his schedule.  He finally texted us back on Saturday, and apologized for brushing us off, but wanted to know if we could teach him about baptism.  We gladly accepted the invitation, and met with him after church on Sunday!  As we taught the Doctrine of Christ, Zach accepted everything that we taught.  He was raised Baptist, but just felt that there was something missing in his church.  I do have one confession, and that is that Elder Pimsuwan and I have THE biggest man crush on Zach, because he is the coolest, manliest man I have ever met!  Haha, it sounds stupid, but I think it is safe to say, that he is going to be the next James Bond.  He dresses very nice, he is very proper, very sharp, drives a nice Porcshe, sounds really manly when he talks, and has a super cool battle scar on the brim of his nose from his ten months in Afghanistan... Haha, he is just too cool.  Anyway, when we were talking about the Holy Ghost with him, he said that he had, for the first time, gotten on his knees and offered a verbal prayer the day before.  He described his prayer as being the most sincere he had ever prayed, and he felt the feeling that we were describing.  He said that he received such a powerful witness from the Holy Ghost.  Zach wants to be baptized within the next month, and we are so excited for him, because his life is going to change so much! Not to mention, he would be EVEN cooler if he was a Mormon!

I did have a great experience this last week that was another good confirmation of why I am here, and that the Lord was inspired in sending me to Spring Valley.  Long story short, I learned of a friend that I had back home who joined the Navy and got married, and is now living in San Diego.  He actually moved to Spring Valley about the time that I found out I would be assigned there around a month ago.  I was so excited to see him, which took a very long time to actually get in contact with him.  I know that I can help my friend.  When someone feels the Spirit in their life, they always want more.  Some decisions can draw people away from that feeling, but when it is brought back to their remembrance, it is a comforting memory that they forgot they were in search of.

I truly am happy, and I couldn't ask for more. Sheesh, I do wish I had some more time out here... But I am thankful for the time that the Lord gave to me to serve Him.  I don't think I have given the Lord two years,  I know that He has given ME two years.  It has and is such a blessing to know that!  It cannot be wasted.  I look forward to this next week and finding the miracles that have been prepared waiting for us to happen upon them. Giddy'up!

        Elder Garner

    Elder Garner in Spring Valley

Elder McCade Tracy

December 15, 2014 at 1:27

Yup, another week has come and gone just like that!  I'm really happy to be with Elder Beecroft for my last two transfers :)  It's been really fun to serve around him again, he came into the mission during my last transfer in Algonquin, so we've gotten to know each other a little bit during that time. We're getting along pretty well, it's a bit stressful having to plan everything for these first couple weeks, because he doesn't know the area very much right now. Yes, he's from the Seattle area of Washington State, that's cool that you all chatted for a little bit. He's been out for about 16 months, the Sisters that came out with him go home with me, he really knows his stuff and relates to people really well!
Yes! I got the package for the 12 Days of Christmas, I was wondering if the ones that just have Cade on them are they for opening now or waiting until Christmas? Yes, the shoes fit perfectly! Thank you so much for everything that you do! I did not open all the gifts this year, I'm being good and waiting for the next day to open the 12 days and not opening anything else right now :)
Karen is still progressing, but not very quickly right now, sadly we've had to drop her date for right now because of some unseen concerns that she's working with the Bishop to resolve. She'll get baptized either in January or February, and more than likely we'll also have her oldest daughter named Chloe and she's 10. 
There's not too many others that are progressing, we've got a few more that we're beginning to work with closely, we started working with Anthony and Samacia once again. After a really good/ throw down lesson, they kept their commitment and came to Church!  They made some good connections with members here, and are planning to come back again next week!!  We'll see how long they keep their promises and follow through.  As of right now, I do not have any info on when we will be Skyping home, I will let you know as soon as possible and we'll get it all worked out.  I emailed Tre to start figuring our schedules, so that we don't over lap and call at the same time :)
I know that you want to meet the people that I've taught and gotten to know during my mission. I'm not opposed to having you pick me up.  When I realized that I would be coming home on Boden's birthday, I began to plan what I could do to make it a special day, not only for me, but for Boden as well.  We've got a few months until this is set in stone, so we can discuss during the call on Christmas, and as the final days get closer.
High for the week - This week it was kind of interesting, because during one of our lessons on Saturday, I was compelled by the Spirit to speak as Elder Holland does during most of his talks in Conference :)  This was with Anthony and Samacia actually.  We reviewed the Restoration with them, and as we talked about the Priesthood and only needing to be baptized once with the Priesthood authority, they remembered that we had set a date with them for last Sunday to be baptized, but nothing happened after we set it.  Anthony then looked at me and said "It's your fault that it didn't happen!"  I immediately told him, by the Spirit of course, and because of the Spirit I don't remember all of what I said, "Being baptized isn't something that we do for kicks and giggles! It's something that has an eternal effect. Baptism by the Priesthood requires us to act, and you haven't done that. The only way that you'll gain an answer is by reading the Book of Mormon, praying about it, and coming to Church. Until you do those things, you will not be baptized." I did say more, but due to guidance of the Spirit, I cannot remember it all. It did work though, they both came to Church and loved it! The Spirit is awesome! I love being worthy of it, and being able to testify with such power and authority :)
Low - Having to drop our bapismal dates and just not having too much success in  this first week of the transfer.
My high for the week was the biggest thing that I learned about myself this week. Good to hear that Elle is starting to play volleyball, and you now get a fun time sitting on the bleachers again :) I'm looking forward to getting the DVD's this week, they won't make me trunky! I know that good things will come as my mission draws to a close in the next few months. Thank you for all that you have done for me during my life. I love you and miss you!

Love your Son and Missionary,
Elder McCade Tracy

Elder Dallin Stout

                       Elder Robinson, Santa and Elder Stout.....Have they been naughty or nice????                                                   Only Santa and the Lord know for sure!!

December 15, 2014

This week was a very eventful one, we had a church tour with Ella, Rene and Bro French. We have to push Shiloh's baptism back a little, because she needs to live the WOW (word of wisdom) for 3 weeks and she didn't quite understand it until we taught it this week. But she is solid, she said she will live it, and the law of tithing! We found a few potential investigators street contacting. We had Ella, her 2 daughters Rene/Autumn and Shiloh come to a Relief Society dinner at the church. (Its probably the only time I will ever be at one of those.) There was a good Christmas program, and they all had a great time meeting with the members. We also had a ward Christmas breakfast that we got Shiloh, Naomi and her 4 kids to come to!  Elder Robinson and I also got pictures with Santa!  It's really good to get all these people into the church building where they can feel the spirit and make friends with the members there.  Naomi could not come to church, due to a gas leak/flooded kitchen. But, she told us how her kids and she really want to get involved with the church!  Friday night, we saw the biggest Rocket launch off of Vandenburg base that they have ever had!  I got a video of it, it was absolutely amazing!  It looked like the sun rising very fast, it was like day time with the sun down!  Right after, we went to a baptism that the sisters had. Saturday, William Topete was baptized!  In a week or 2 he turns 9, so we got it done just in time!  We were both in the circle for his confirmation and Elder Robinson did the confirmation. 
     Elder Robinson and I are staying together this transfer!  I am excited to meet our new district and to be working here longer with my companion!
     I know that the gospel blesses our families and can help us grow closer together as we build them on the foundation of Christ.  This Christmas season, I would like to help as many people as I can know about this important principle, and find what the meaning of Christmas is all about.
     We have done service for Sister Schuyler this week and also Sister George. They are both older women in the ward and its good to help them where they need it.
Much love,
Elder Stout

my address is the same I didn't get transferred. 

P.S. my address is the same I didn't get transferred. 
                                            325 W. Burton Mesa Dr. #207, Lompoc, CA, 93436

Elder Zach Beckman

                       (Tavake, Me, Seegmiller, Pope... My companion right now!, Gardner, Laudi)

Mon, 15 Dec 2014 14:05

Another Transfer in Cherry Grove!!

Hey everyone!!  So this last week was so AWESOME!!  It was one of the funnest weeks of my mission so far! I don't really know why, it was!!  I am just glad to have a companion that I can get along with and who is a hard worker and is just fun to be around.

So this week was transfers and I received Elder Pope from Northern California!  It is so sick because he is my "Mission Grandson," the kid I trained, trained Elder Pope!  So ya, it was a lot of fun.  Everyone at transfers was freaking out when they saw that we were together!  But he is super sweet!!  We are already having a lot of fun!! It is so great!

This week we had our ward Christmas party and I thought it would be fun, but it was actually kind of boring, not going to lie.  We all had to sit on the ground and it was just awful.  But ya, we had that, and it was pretty fun setting up all the decorations and snacking on the food as they were setting it up.  But other than that, we just sat around and talked to people who were there.  Which cool story,.... a member in the ward brought an actual nun to the party!! Ha ha!!  It was their kids teacher, and they invited her, and she came!  So that was pretty awesome!  We have such a sweet ward when it comes to missionary work.

Well this week were able to teach Richard!, one of our investigators who is getting baptized this next week, and he is so awesome!!  He was having a hard time giving up smoking, but he is making it happen!  So I will have to send you guys pictures next week of the baptism!!  But ya, I will keep you posted on what else is happening this next week, but other than that, you will just have to wait and see what happens next week!!

Hope all is going well for you this week! Miss and love you guys!!!

~Keep Smiling~ 
Thee Elder Beckman

Elder Beckman

Here is a picture of my Posterity on the mission!! 
(Tavake, Me, Seegmiller, Pope... My companion right now!, Gardner, Laudi)
(Dad, Me, Son, Grandson, Great Grandson, Great Grandson,)

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Elder Justin Thiel

December 18, 2014

This week has really be a humbling experience for me. It was a good week and we still got a lot of things done. It was mix with a lot of the spirit reassuring me of myself.  We spent a lot of this week trying to study how to make our teaching more effective by learning how to ask better questions, to keep our investigators more involved in the lesson.  We got it to the point of where we had the investigators talking more, then we were in the lesson but they were teaching themselves, so it was really good, and I felt like they understood what we were talking about.  We also tried to focus on finding out what the investigator needs and focusing on how the gospel could help them in their different situations.  I realized more and more this week, that as a missionary you can't just rely on yourself to teach people.  It's not about the eloquence of the speaker or anything like that.  It is about bringing the spirit, and letting it teach the people, and really just getting out of the way as a missionary.

We had a sad moment this week.. on Sunday we were talking with Brother Kirkland, Benjamin's father, and he said that we needed to move his baptismal date and that we could talk about setting one after the first of the year.  He didn't really give us a clear reason for this, other than his family is going through some hard times!  So I hope something hasn't happened.  We are still going to keep working with him.

We were able to put a kid on date for baptism, named Nathan Owen.  He is the grandson of a less active that spends most of his time over at their house.  His mom is okay with him being baptized, and his date is on the 1st of January.  He even came to all three hours of church this Sunday, and that is a big accomplishment! He is really shy though, and seems like a kid that would get picked on in school... it just breaks my heart to see kids like that.  There are a couple in the ward.  I just want to be friends with all of them, just to let them know that someone cares about them.  And then go and talk to the kids who pick on them, to try and help them understand what damage they could cause to that kid, which could change the course of their life..

We had the ward Christmas party on Saturday and it was pretty good, not nearly as big as the ones in Utah, but it was still good.  We had some of the best ham ever there, and they had lots of different rolls and southern foods.  I love some good old southern corn bread!! Mmmm!!!  They also had some awesome deserts.  The program consisted of one of the primary kids getting up and telling Christmas jokes to everyone there, some singing by a new couple, and Santa coming so the little kids could come sit on his lap and tell him what they wanted for Christmas.  Overall, it was really fun!!

On Sunday, we had our weekly lunch over at a members home, named the Bush's.  They invite all of their family to come over as well, so there is a good group of us over there.  They always serve us really good food and after lunch we have a corn hole tournament.  Corn hole is a bean bag game where you have to toss bags onto a board that has a whole near the top of it.  There are 2 people on each team, with two boards facing each other about 20 feet away!   Each team has one player standing near one of the boards with a member of the opposing team standing with them.  The other team members stand next to the other board so that they are facing each other. It is really hard to describe... it's one of those games that you have to play to understand.  Anyway, it is kind of a big deal and really competitive.  My rival, is the man who taught me how to play the game, named Bug Island. He is a wealthy man in the ward.  This Sunday, he won against me so there was a lot so smack talk going on...

I'm sorry to hear about grandma and grandpa and I will be sure to keep them in my prayers

I am out of time, so I am sorry that I didn't get to comment more on the things that you told me, but I did read them.  I love you guys and make sure that Matt gets me some ideas for Christmas.  I also bought an electric blanket on sale for $25 and a sweater for $17, I think, so that I will stay warm.. I am still in the trailer, but we do have some small heaters now.

I hope you all have a good week!

Elder Thiel

Elder Dallin Lambertsen

December 8, 2014
The morning started off as usual, Bishop’s meeting, Ward Correlation, and Ward Council. After Bishop’s meeting we received a phone call from Brother Coleman. He said he had a referral for us and that they will be at church today and he wants to introduce them to us. So we said that that would be totally awesome and we are excited for it. About 20 minutes before church started someone walked in who we didn't recognize so we rushed over to talk to him. He said his name was Lawrence that he was from Sierra Leon. He has been in Oakdale for 3 weeks. He had talked to missionaries back home and attended a church service. He sought this church out and brought his two nieces. Then after Lawrence, we had a part member family come who brought some friends and they attended the entire 3 hours as well. This story is slowly getting better. Elder McConnell sat with Lawrence and I sat with the Sandgrens (Ward Missionaries). The Dunns came over and started talking to the Sandgrens about FHE (which will be today) The Dunns, a less active, and a part member family will be hosting it and Lawrence will be coming. Then, in Priesthood, Brother Sandgren invited Lawrence over to watch the Christmas Devotional as well.  After Church we went Immediately over to the Daums, who took us to the Ipsens for dinner, then after that we had dinner with the Agwatu Family (yes 2 Dinners).  The Agwatus are a part member family who we want to start teaching. She has a son who will be coming to play basketball with us today. After dinner with them, we went to the Sandgrens for the Christmas Devotional; Lawrence was there, a part member and a less active. It was amazing. Then Immediately after we went to a recent converts home and she expressed interest in doing family history work and taking names to the temple. Which is awesome because earlier in the week we had dinner with the Temple President and his wife. They gave us an open invitation to bring recent converts and investigators to their home to teach them how to use which we are going to try and line up this week if possible.
After the Christmas Devotional Lawrence expressed to us that he was very thankful for helping him feel at home. All his family is still in Sierra Leon and he is working on getting them over here.

Crazy miracles all around. This is the Lord’s Work and it is Hastening. Are you keeping up with the Hastening?
What is up with the weather? no white Christmas in Utah? Having lived this long in Minnesota I now have a new perspective of cold. I shout for joy when it is in the 20's even more when it is in the 30's. I almost consider breaking out the short sleeve shirts :)
As for Christmas day, we will be skyping from Bishop Seilbachs.  We will be able to Skype for about 45 Minutes. We should be at bishops from 12:00 to 2:00 maybe 3.  So any time between there is when I should be calling.  I will figure out how to set up my skype and make an account.  Maybe you can make one for me and send me the login info. Yeah let’s do that.   
I got the Christmas package and the LDS store one . I opened the store one and man are those books big! Thank you!
Hope you all have a good week!
Elder Lambertsen

Elder Dallin Lambertsen

Monday, December 01, 2014 10:15 AM


Thanksgiving was awesome!
We started off the day playing in the Ward Turkey Bowl. It is important to mention that it was -2 when we started playing. It was only two hand touch, but man the muscles were sore until about Sunday.
We then had dinner with the Bishop. I don’t know if I have mentioned this in the past but he is the CFO and Co-Founder of Zeffer Hats. His house is very nice and state of the art. He is also an amazing cook. I don't think I have had a more tender piece of meat in my entire life. He had a turkey, a goose, and a duck. After having dinner with them we crashed at the apartment and took an hour and a half nap (food coma). Then later in the evening, we went to a recent convert family for another Thanksgiving dinner. It was much more meager. We had a small chicken, stuffing, potatoes, and banana bread. That is kind of why I love the area of Oakdale. It has every walk of life from rich to poor, from Hmong to Spanish, from white to black and I can verify that Minnesota is a Gigantic Melting Pot. There is a good mix of everyone and everything in this ward.
Wednesday was Transfers! I dropped off Elder Thacker in Bloomington, and he is heading to St. Cloud. Then I picked up Elder McConnell! Elder McConnell was serving in the Medicine Lake Ward and has been a Zone Leader for the past 10 Months, but now we are just serving as a normal companionship. In Missionary Genealogy, he would be considered my Mom (companion after Training is complete).  He is from Mountain Green, Utah (Weber Canyon). He is also da bomb.
I did get the package! Thanks for the music! I had a member switch it all over to my Ipod. I was excited to get the advent Calendar but unfortunately it did not survive the shipping process, all the chocolate is at the bottom of the calendar.
Last week we did not have to many lessons scheduled, but on Sunday we really buckled down and set up 8 appointments for the next week.
It has been freezing up here. I believe the high for this week is around 7 degrees. It hit like 35 and I felt like wearing my short sleeve shirts. It was awesome. I did see grass in that video!  You need to send a few of those degrees up this way.

Have you guys seen the Christmas video? Watch it, share it. You got the pass along cards with the Ensign. Use the hashtag #sharethegift. This video is a big push by the church. Us as missionaries are supposed to take numbers on referrals, investigators, and baptisms we get from this initiative and report them every week to church headquarters.
Merry Christmas #sharethegift
Elder Lambertsen

Elder Dallin Stout

December 1, 2014

So Tuesday we went to a big interfaith Thanksgiving celebration at the Methodist church. It was really cool their hymn books are like 800 pages! We sang some hymns that are also in our own hymn book.  They had choirs sing, our Primary sang, and they had lots of readings from different faiths. They had Buddhist, Islamic, Confucius, Taoism, Judaism, Christian, and a bunch of others that I can't remember all gathered there. There were lots of LDS people there, and 2 other sets of sister missionaries that we saw.  We also met the mayor of Lompoc there, he is around 6"10, (Super tall), he was really nice he asked Elder Robinson and I where we were from and talked with us for a little bit.  On exchanges with Elder Wickern, we ran into Tamra outside her house. She told us how after we left last week, she had a personal experience where she discovered that there is a God!  That is the most positive thing I have heard her say.  We talked a bit about how God talks to people in their own understanding and read from the Book Of Mormon.  We had Thanksgiving with Bishop and his family. He wanted us to play in the turkey bowl, but President said we shouldn't so we ate a lot instead.  We took Brother Issacson to Ella's for a lesson, but she had to reschedule.  So we walked over to Juan and Shiloh's which is close by.  We had a very focused lesson on what they desire and how they can get there.  They know a lot of doctrine and the steps of the gospel, they say that they are ready for baptism and Shiloh told us that she wants to be baptized soon!  Juan wants some time to prepare, but we set Shiloh with a date for baptism on the 20th of December!
     Elder Robinson and I are working effectively and in unity.  He knows his way around the area like the back of his hand now, and we are working a lot with members.  He has had older brothers go on missions and one of them went to the Hong Kong, China mission!
     I know that through our Savior, we can develop Christ like attributes such as Charity. That we can learn to love our fellow men around us and serve them as Christ did. I know that true happiness is found through living the gospel, keeping covenants and spending valuable time with our friends and families. 
     We were able to help Robin move out everything from her house and put it in storage.  That was a big project!!  We also helped the Julca's (recent convert family), tear out a few bushes from their front yard.  Our neighbor was moving and he knocked on our door during lunch and asked us to give him a hand.  So we helped him move some big mattresses and box springs.  We found out that he is a member from New Zealand, that he served his mission is Australia.  He was very nice and we got to know him better right as he was getting ready to move.

Sincerely Elder Stout

December 8, 2014

We met a guy on the street, named Frazier, who remembers Elders coming to his home when he was a boy in London. He asked for a Book Of Mormon and wants to learn all about it! We exchanged numbers and also gave him a Restoration pamphlet.  We contacted a referral from the sisters, his name is Balthazar!  We made plans to meet with him next week.  We saw Naomi, and she is a friend of Shiloh's.  She told us that Shiloh is excited for baptism, and that she's prodding her to go to church with her!  It's awesome to see people get excited about the gospel, they spread it around like wild fire, and naturally become great missionaries!  William Topete is an 8 yr old that is about to turn 9.  We have been working with him for a long time and he is now getting baptized this upcoming Saturday!  We have challenged him to read the children's Book Of Mormon before the end of the year and he has so far been doing great.  We have been giving members that we eat dinner with, "He is the Gift", pass along cards and challenged them to share it with someone.  It's a great video the church has put out about the true focus of Christmas.
     Elder Robinson is doing great work connecting with everyone and helping them come unto Christ. We are getting along great and are keeping busy with lots of work to do here. 
     I love this time of year when people are prepared with softened hearts to hear and apply the gospel in their lives. I know that Jesus Christ, is the Son of God and that He is our Heavenly Father's gift to us. It is through Him that men are saved, and if we learn about and embrace Him more, we will notice the many things that have been given us. We will also know true happiness and enjoy our lives abundantly more.
     The service we have been able to do has been a great reminder of what I am here to do. It is to love others and support them in doing good. This is an effective way to show people that we do love them individually and that we desire their happiness. 
Elder Stout

Elder Dallin Stout

November 24, 2014

 This week we brought our ward mission leader to a lesson with Ella, we taught the gospel of Jesus Christ and committed her to read the Book Of Mormon daily. We had a lesson with Tamra, we watched a Mormon message called "The Hope of God's Light."  It's about an atheist guy who comes to a knowledge of God's love and how people can find out themselves.  We asked her what she thought and she said it was "depressing."  So she apparently only understood the first minute and tuned out the rest. She expressed how she doesn't care if God is there or not, so we straight up asked her why she lets us come by.  She said she doesn't want to say no to us. She gave us back the Book Of Mormon and pamphlets, so she is dropped now.  We had an awesome Zone Conference in Ventura!  President Felix gave us a new five areas of focus for the mission.  We learned a lot about what the spirit of the law and the letter of the law is, along with many other discussions.  We committed Juan, Shiloh and Ty to come to church, but only Shiloh came with her baby.  Denise and Juan stayed home to watch the 3 boys. Which was really good, considering I haven't ever seen any of them at church!  We also went on a blitz on Tuesday, with the Elders quorum president, Brother French, and his priest age brother.  Elder Robinson went to see the Topetes and Brother Scott, while I saw the Julcas and the Pools. 
     Elder Robinson and I are doing very good, he is a hard worker and is great with peoples names! He remembers more of the members names than I can!
     I know that gift of the Holy Ghost is the first and most important gift to us. As we learn to recognize his voice, familiarize ourselves with his companionship, we can be more sensitive to his still small voice and know what our Father in Heaven's will is for us.
     We did service for the Mark's home by cleaning up the yard and trimming their hedges. We also helped out at the food pantry where we met another less active member who works there with their being 3 total. We also helped Robin clean out her house more before she has to leave her house. We got some tools and went to the Julca's house to dig out a few of there bushes that are pretty big. Service is helping us build positive relationships with people even when we don't really know them. Its a great way to show people that we don't only claim to be Christian but live what we teach.

Elder Stout

Elder Dallin Lambertsen

Monday, October 06, 2014 10:09 AM

Conference Week

This week has seemed to fly by. Hopefully I can remember all the things that happened.
Last week on Exchanges with Elder Meyer (who is a Hmong Missionary) we went tracting in East St. Paul, we ran into Hmong lady. Elder Meyer asked her to give me a Hmong name which ended up being Vaam Cawn Seej which means "Protector of the Savior". Which was pretty awesome.
Last week we got a referral. This one was unusual because it was saying that someone needed help moving. When they usually say that, they say so and so requested a Book of Mormon or a Bible. We called her to come and help her move. We showed up and about 5 minutes later with 8 missionaries from the North St Paul zone which was pretty shocking. We ended up moving her in in about 50 minutes. Hopefully we will be able to get her to FHE tonight at a member’s home.
As for conference, President Uchtdorf, Saturday morning was probably my favorite. If there was any theme that I picked up on, it was that we all need to have our own testimony and know for ourselves the truthfulness of this restored gospel. We cannot rely on what other people know. We need to do as Richard G Scott said 1. Pray 2. Read Scriptures (Book of Mormon) 3. Have Family Home evening 4. Attend the Temple. Helaman 5:12 came to mind also. Some other things that really interested me where the two talks on the Law of the Fast. It had never appeared to me that the blessings of fasting also came from paying Fast Offerings and how we should contribute heavily to fast offerings and reach out to the poor. That wasn't a MTC choir that was a Viewmont High Choir spotting the people I knew. I’m sure Ryan Tracy was instrumental in getting Dallin that much air time.
To answer your Questions

I still have a few winter things to get. Boots, Scarf, Beanie, Etc.. Winter is Definitely coming. This week has been bitter cold.
My Companion is a District Trainer ( District Leader and Trainer)
We did not have a Conference dinner. We were taken to Mongolian Buffet By bishop and John Quinn (Running for state Rep look him up) that place was amazing. I ate there on Saturday and am still full.

Things are going well here. Have a Great Week!
Elder Lambertsen

                                                     Elder Lambertsen and his district

Elder James Hadley

Here is a letter from Jimmy. He is doing so well and loving his mission as you will see from this letter. He has been out for 11 months already!!

Oct. 20, 2014

The first thing I want to say is that we are seeing so many miracles. IT'S SO AWESOME. I'm dead serious. So we are teaching about 25 GOOD people right now. And half of them are all family members of Rodrigo. We are teaching FAMILIES, nothing is better than teaching parents and kids together. Teaching so simple that the kids can understand the truths of the Gospel. And then doing magic tricks and stuff. Wow, I sound so much like a missionary.

But yeah, so this might be my last week here, which is a tiny bit hard, because really when I got here, well, there was nothing, and I have worked so hard and now, well, next change they are going to baptize at least 15 people I'm sure. I've never seen this much success in my mission yet, we have been SO BLESSED with the best people. But yeah, I really don't want to leave but if I have to I will. I'm not here for my own sake, other Elder's will get to baptize those people. But really it would be better if I stayed.

So yeah, it's so exciting, we should have 2 baptisms this week, we are going to do it, a Grandma and her granddaughter. I'm super excited.

So really I'm just here working so hard loving working with Elder Anderson, he is super amazing. And well enjoying every second. Honestly family and friends, don't take this bad, but I don't really miss you that much, I don't really have time to miss people and I just don't feel sad or anything. Its a super good thing. I still care about all of you a ton,  don't worry.

Thanks a ton I LOVE YOU ALL. 

Elder Jim Hadley

Elder Dallin Stout

November 17th, 2014

 Our highlight lesson this week was with Ella (the Mom) and Rene (11). We took the Youngs (Chris is a recent convert) with us and taught the Plan of Salvation (POS) by having them draw it out with us as we went along. It was good to keep their attention and keep Rene from getting too far off topic. It was a long lesson but was good, We will see them again tonight. We have met a lot of new people on the street the past few weeks, but all of them are disappearing! Either we can't find their address, or they don't live there. One example was Jim, We met him last Saturday, and went to his house to be told that he didn't live there. But just 2 days ago, we found him again and he confirmed the same address, so, we're not exactly sure how that works out.?? Yesterday our next door neighbors came to church for the full 3 hrs!  So did 2 other people that we don't see much or ask to come! It's kinda funny, no one that we are actually working with or bugging to come, comes! 
     Elder Robinson Is great, although we both got a little sick with something this week. Other than that we do great, we teach in unity, have a plan for what we are doing and are always striving to improve.
     I know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ changes people's hearts, that it makes us want to change for the better and follow the commandments because we love our Heavenly Father. John 3:16, I know that God loves us and has shown us by sending his Son to help us return to Him.
     The other day we helped Robin clean out her garage. She is the Woman that we helped push her truck to the gas station several weeks ago. She is getting Evicted from her home and needed our help to get the things she needs and get rid of everything else that she doesn't need. Yesterday our neighbor Errol came to church with his family, and asked us to help him move in a few big oak wood dressers to his upstairs apartment.  So later, Elder Robinson and I helped and also got to sit down and get to know him better.  He really likes zombie stuff and we connected with him on that and MMA/Wrestling.  We later got around to a good discussion about the gospel, found out that in the past he has gone with missionaries to teach investigators and is a member with the Aaronic Priesthood!  Later, we helped him organize his furniture and bring in lots of groceries. Service has been a great way to segway into the gospel and build lasting relationships with people. 
Elder Stout

Elder McCade Tracy

November 17, 2014 at 1:11

Another week has come and gone, much faster than the last. That's awesome! Congrats to Elle! I knew that she would do great things and give you all another opportunity to watch things from the bleachers :) Haha :) I'm happy that I'll be able to come and watch her play some volleyball when I get home! 
I saw that :) Thank you so much for doing all of this for me! I'll be getting everything taken care of from Men's Warehouse today after I'm done emailing :) I'm so excited to get these new suits :) I'll still wear my other suits, so that I don't wear through my new ones, I can't believe that it's almost time for me to go through everything and see what I want to bring home and what I want to leave out here :) I haven't put my bike in the shop yet, I'm working on getting the tires and inner tubes in before I have them tune it up and have it all nice and pretty for me to sell :)
I hear ya! Last night we had our first snow fall of the year! It was pretty cold during the middle of last week but warmed up a little bit and then dropped on Sunday afternoon after Church, it started as a little rain but then turned to snow as the night went on :) Now there's a little bit of snow on the ground and they cancelled school because of two inches of snow!!!!! I really don't want to deal with this roller coaster of cancelling school again ;) The Ward is still awesome! I'm still getting to know everyone in the Ward but things are going really good and I'm learning a lot about the people here and making a lot of connections :) The teaching pool is steadily growing, and we're still sorting through all of those who are solid and those who aren't as ready for baptism just yet. We should have at least one baptism in December just before Christmas again so I'm excited for it :) Elder Bennett and I are working really well together, teaching is really easy when I can trust the person that I'm teaching with. I learned that sometimes we have to walk through a lot of crap before we see the light and things start to get better again, the last two weeks have been a lot of ups and downs but we've seen so much good out of it. It's been mainly with one investigator and her husband, who's a returning member, his wife is named Karen. Karen has had some ups and downs during the last little while and it's affected us quite a bit with teaching her. Last night we had a great lesson with them and committed Karen to pray about Dec. 21 for a baptismal date :) She's felt the Spirit and told others what she has learned, she really feels that God is leading her in this direction and that this is true. My favorite thing about Indiana is really being so close to people again and not seeing the same people every day while we're walking or biking around :) It's a very nice change from Carrollton and being kinda isolated with only a few people that we see every single day. The week has had it's ups and downs, a lot more ups than downs though. I'm ready to get this next week rolling forward and find some new people and work with our baptismal dates more so. There are some great things getting ready to happen in Evansville and I'm blessed to be a part of it all right now :) Thank you for all the wonderful things you do to help me through all of this! Love you and miss you!
Love your Son and Missionary,
Elder McCade Tracy

Elder Zach Beckman

Mon, 17 Nov 2014 13:15

The LIfe of Elder Beckman

Hey everyone!!! So this last week was freaking awesome!!  There was so much fun stuff that happened in all so little time, but this was definitely one of the most fun weeks of my mission so far! 

So to start out... last Monday was one of the best PDAYS of my mission!! Ha ha ha!!  So we played hockey with some of the youth in my ward, but it was so sweet because we went to the church and set up all the tables in the whole building to make a huge square and then we played hockey in the gym!!  It was so sweet because it was seriously so last minute and we had so much fun!!

Next story was we had a general authority come and talk to us this last week!!  His name was Elder Anderson from the 2nd quorum of the 70!  And it was great!!  He talked to us about really applying the doctrine of Christ into our own lives, and it was just an awesome meeting!!  But, it was all the way up in Montgomery! (where Elder Seegmiller is), so we didn't want to wake up super early to go the the leadership meeting, so we got to stay with them in their apartment, with them and another set of missionaries!!  So that was so much fun!!  There was 7 of us all on the floor of their apartment and it was just a grand ole time as you can all imagine!!! Ha ha ha!!  Great times of the mission!

So this week we put an investigator Richard on Date for Baptism for Nov. 22nd and it will be awesome!  Richard is a huge guy, and he looks like a lumberjack!!  It is awesome!!  I will send some pictures next week when it happens!!  But ya, it was great week because we took him to the family history center, and he found some of his relatives are actually Mormon!!  So that was cool for him to see!  But ya, there are a couple of Investigators that we are really working with and will hopefully get baptized before the end of the year!! 

So hopefully you are all having a great week, but I want you all to know something, and that is that I know this church is true and it becomes more and more clear every week of my mission!  One of the things I have been working on most in my mission, is following and listening to the spirit in everything I do, and I have seen such a huge change in my life!!  It is amazing to see what God will do for you, if you just stop for a second and listen to what he has to say!  So if you all can keep his commandments everyday, He will bless you with the spirit in your life enough to where you feel the love of God everyday!! 

I love you all and hope you have a great week!!

~Keep Smiling~

Elder Beckman

                                                                       Winter in Ohio