Troy’s Letter: November 22, 2010

22 11 2010

So tired after a long day...fell asleep right in the chair!

Hello all,

It was so good to hear from all of you. I am so jealous of Taryn and her opportunity to shake President Monson’s hand at the Polynesian Cultural Center. That is so amazing—one of the coolest things I’ve ever heard. Awesome. I would absolutely love to meet the prophet; everytime I testify that there is a living prophet in today’s times, the spirit confirms it so strongly. It would be amazing to meet him.

I was really glad to hear that Grandpa Nolder is doing alright. I have included him in many prayers. Every single time I felt that everything was going to be okay. I was also really touched to hear about the sacrifice that Grandpa Keyser is making for me. I honestly appreciate it. Thank you Grandpa. I know that you will be blessed for it.

Guillermo and his wife Vanessa

So we had a baptism this Saturday! Guillermo baptized his wife Vanessa. It all went well and the spirit was way strong. I’m glad it all turned out well because President Gillespie was in town. He and his wife decided to go to the baptism—haha. Elder Vargas and I were a little nervous, but it turned out great. I’m way stoked for them. It’s awesome to see a young couple with kids coming into this church, which desperately needs young families. This Saturday we also have another baptism! Her name is Nilda. She was so amazingly prepared. It has been astounding. The first day I got here Elder Vargas and I confirmed a baptismal date with her. The prior missionaries had just recently found her. We taught her everything in two weeks. She had her interview and now she is getting baptized on Saturday! The ward is getting excited now with the baptisms happening and more receptive to missionary work. We are also working a lot with less actives and recent converts that aren’t coming to church. On Sunday, we had twelve less actives attend! Our Branch President is way stoked. He says he loves hearing children crying and being irreverent because it means that people are coming to church. The Branch President is even speaking on missionary work during sacrament meeting. He is awesome. He is really new and doesn’t really know much about being a branch president… but he is way stoked for missionary work and likes to accompany us. He reminds me a lot of Grandpa Keyser—haha.

I have to say, Ovalle is nothing like Coquimbo. Success just seemed to fall into my lap in Coquimbo. Here I am working twice as hard and success is hard to find. I don’t think I’ve ever worked so hard or talked to so many people in my entire life. We are doing everything we can think of to find and talk to every person in the street. I have dedicated myself to finding ten new investigators here a week, something harder to do in Ovalle. Every night Elder Vargas and I get to the pension covered in sweat, exhausted, and content with having talked to everything with legs in this town. I feel like here in Ovalle I am learning everything that I never learned in Coquimbo. I’m constantly trying to stretch myself and I feel like I have grown so much as a missionary in just two weeks.

In my search to help this ward progress and find new investigators and families, an idea struck me that really has worked. I decided that we could print out mini invitations to church that have a photo of the chapel, the time, and meeting times on it. Now every morning we print out like 100 invitations and hand them out to everyone we see in the street. It is a good conversation starter and helps us to talk with everyone we see. We have found a lot of less actives and a lot of future contacts from it. On an interchange with my zone leader Elder Scoma, I showed him how I use them and he loved them so much he started doing it. He even showed the assistants and they loved it. It looks like now they are going to apply my idea with every zone in the mission. I hope that it catches on and that it helps us as a mission to speak with everyone.

I really do love being a district leader. It’s really my job to motivate the missionaries in our district; I feel like I’ve helped them get stoked for the work. Today we are going to eat lunch with Elder Bishop and Elder Purnell, a companionship that is kind of struggling. I’m just going to motivate the crap out of them—haha. I know they are going to be super blessed. My love for the missionaries has really changed as I include each and everyone in my prayers. I’m starting to see what it means to be a leader in the church.

I love each and every one of you and I am really touched to hear that you pray for me. We are going to need it here, but I have faith that we are going to continue to reactivate, baptize, and raise the excitement of this ward. I’m excited to see the miracles that this week holds for us.

Elder Teeples

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