Monday, February 29, 2016

Temple Miracle---Week 81, 79 weeks in Phoenix Mission, 31 weeks in Glendale

Temple Miracle---
Week 81, 79 weeks in Phoenix Mission, 31 weeks in Glendale

Dear friends and family,

It was such a wonderful week full of miracles. Hopefully we will be
moving sometime this week. I can't wait to get out of this apartment!!
Then our neighbors who think we're loud can have actual loud
neighbors! Anyway, here are the highlights from my week.

Temple with Christine
As I mentioned last week, one of our recent converts, Christine, went
through the Phoenix temple and received her endowment. Christine is
terminally ill and pretty much bedridden. Doctors were predicting she
would pass away last August. Despite her terrible condition, she made
it all the way through the session. Everyone was so patient and it was
truly a special experience for all who were there—especially
Christine. After the temple, we all went back to her apartment to
congratulate  her and have cake. She had to go straight to bed because
she was in such bad shape afterward, but she said it was so worth it.
I'm so grateful I got to witness such a miracle. Christine is not
doing well now. She could pass on any day now.

Our roommates, Elders Plourde and Bryan, got an extra companion for
this transfer. Now there are five elders living in our apartment. The
new Elder is Elder Benolerão from New York City. He is Filipino and
hilarious. Luckily we're moving to a new place this week because it's
getting pretty crowded in here!!

New Investigators
This week we broke our dry spell and picked up two new investigators!
The first is Jamie, who we have taught before, but she just turned 9
recently so she is now "officially" an investigator! She is seriously
the smartest kid I have ever met. It amazes me how much she takes in
and understands. She committed to be baptized on May 13, which is her
late mother's birthday. It's really far away, but we didn't want to
spoil that special day for her. We know that day means a lot to her.
Our other new investigator is who we're super psyched to be teaching.
Her name is Michelle and she is a self-referral, which means she got
online herself and requested missionaries. She had talked to the
missionaries before in Nevada, but had lost contact. We stopped by
with our ward mission leader, Brother Taylor, and had a great lesson.
We basically just set expectations and asked about her past with God.
She just broke down crying and said she is so grateful that she found
the Church again. Right there, 5 minutes after meeting her, I felt
impressed to invite her to be baptized. I did, and she accepted the
invitation. She will be baptized on March 26, if not earlier. She is
the definition of a "golden investigator".

Zone Service Project
On Friday, our whole zone participated in a service project in a really
ghetto neighborhood. We helped the City of Phoenix clean up an alley.
It was a really small alley and it took two hours to clean it up. But
dang, it looked great(er) when we were done. We picked up trash, and
other things that probably shouldn't be mentioned by a missionary. We
also weeded the whole alley. Seriously, there were some pretty nasty
things left in that alley. No worries though—we wore gloves and masks.

District Meeting
We do a district meeting every week, but this one was really good! I
have a discussion on how to overcome big problems we have on our
missions. Some struggle with testimonies, homesickness, girls, etc..
And the best way to overcome those obstacles is to focus on
eliminating the smaller problems such as getting up on time, eating
healthier, using time wisely, etc.. When we work on those problems,
the Lord will trust us and help us with our bigger problems. I know it
really helped me!

It was about the same. About 82°F and sunny every day. It's getting
pretty warm! #PrayForFlagstaff

Well that was my week. I'd love to hear from you all! Very few people
understand how much an email from someone back home really means to a
missionary. Just over 5 more months and I'll be back in MO. Until
then, I'll be rocking it here in PHX.

Seriously though—email me! Now or sometime during the week! Not that
I'm demanding or anything... :)

Much love,

Elder Jones
Black Canyon Ward
Arizona Phoenix Mission

With Elder Young at Phoenix Temple

Blurry zone picture in the alley we cleaned up.
Left to right: Elders Buckway, Bradley, Davenport, Katz, Plourde, Young, Gardner, Dawson, Conover, Jones, Bryan, Benolerão, Jones, Cespedes, Diamante

District pic. Top row: Jones, Dawson, Young, Diamante, Jones,
Cespedes Bottom row: Plourde, Bryan, Benolerão

Us with Frank, a recent convert.

Elder Young with a cat that hangs out by our apartment.

weekly selfie

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