Wow it has been a long time since I last got to communicate with you. And I have way too much to say! First of all, I am in Bremerton Washington! Which is still in the Tacoma mission, where I will stay for the next two years. The Bremerton ward, to be exact. What a crazy week it has been. The MTC was more than I could have imagined in spiritual boosting. Every day was better than the last and by the end I was sad to leave but way more excited to be starting my adventure in WA. I especially miss my district, they are awesome, and we became very close. It was amazing to live among thousands of missionaries, new missionaries like me all figuring out how it works and doing their best to obey exactly and listen to the Spirit. Going to the temple with our two districts was especially great. I absolutely love the temple and I am bummed that it will be another year before I get to go again. Looking back, I have realized that frequent, prayerful temple attendance was the best thing I did for my preparation to be a missionary. In the temple I learned what Heavenly Father knew I needed to learn.
|Bremerton, WA Ward Boundaries|
|Bremerton directly west of downtown Seattle (Temple location on far right)|
As for Bremerton. It is a very interesting place. Some people might call it, well, sketchy. There are a lot of problems here. Drugs, alcohol, broken families, poverty, and the like. Satan has done damage. But I'm here to help! I am in no way in danger, so don't worry about that at all. But as a result, the people here are at the bottom of the pride cycle, if you will. And that makes missionary work very successful here. Of course, success is not measured by the numbers, but if it was, this might be one of the most successful areas in the mission. There is so much work that we have four missionaries for my area. Me, Elder Ferrin (trainer, DL, ZL, been out 21 months, from Tooele UT), Elder Lonas (trainer, ZL, been out 18 months, 6 months in Bremerton, from Carlsbad CA), and Elder Zastrow (been out 6 weeks, in training, from Anaheim CA). So the four of us work together and team up differently to get all the work done. And there is a lot of work. Just in the 6 days I've been here we've taught about 40 lessons and we have 6 people on date for baptism this month. Crazy! There is so much to do and I'm trying hard to learn who all the investigators and members are and to get to know the area. (I did get to bear my testimony yesterday). Funny story, we spend the three hours before church doing "church round-up" where we make phone calls and stop by people to get them to church. We had 48 people to contact! We also have this thing in the WA-TAC mission called 5-7's. Every day, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. everyone in the mission knocks doors. Tracting! And to my great surprise, it actually works! We get very few referrals because we get a potential investigator on almost every street. It's really surprising but really fun. I love knocking on people's doors and telling them that we're the missionaries and we have a message about Jesus that can help their family. One more quick story: on my first day here, last Tuesday, we knocked doors, I was really nervous at first, but trusting in God. The first one I knocked myself, a man answered and said he was very interested in hearing our message. His name is Ean and he is so ready for the gospel. He's had a hard life but we're giving him a church tour tomorrow and teaching the Restoration. I hope he gets baptized!
My time is up, but I send all my love to you and pray for each of you. I'm still adjusting and learning a lot, trying to figure things out, but I have great companions as examples to me and I'm having a lot of fun, much more than I thought I would.
P.S. I'm really really sorry but I forgot to bring my camera to upload pictures today :( :( I was rushed to leave the apartment, and forgot. I haven't taken a picture of my new companions anyway, we've been so so busy. But next week I promise to bring it and send what I have. Thank goodness for the blog, at least you have those pictures.
Sorry if I forgot anything else, but I am out of time. Love you all!!
|Bremerton - distance from Tacoma|
The 32 new Missionaries who arrived with Tommy (on Day 3)