Monday, February 29, 2016

Many Miracles & A New Car! Woo Hoo 02/29/16

Whelp, this week was the first week of the 7 week transfer because of the change in MTC stays for English missionaries, we have an extra week tacked onto this Transfer! Boy was it a blessed week here in Chatham. We got here Tuesday from transfers in our brand new 2016 Nissan Rouge, it's so nice! It even had the stickers and everything on it. It had 50km total... Once we got to Chatham after the long car ride however we went to work searching for people to teach. We don't have a lot of super interested investigators we are teaching so we went out to search for those elect! So I know Mom wants to know all about my new companion Elder Certonio. He has been out on his mission for 3 months, he is from Spanish Fork, which means he is my first companion from Utah! We get along super well, back at home he loved Snowboarding and watching Italian soccer. His family is Italian, so it makes sense! He has 3 siblings and his dad is a paramedic! There's a quick bit about him!

Tuesday night we were down town Chatham contacting people on the street when two guys approached us and asked if they could pray with us, he then put his hands on our shoulders and prayed asking if we would be able to feel the Lord's Love, when he finished he asked if we had ever felt that before and Elder Certonio said "Yeah, it's the spirit." It took this man, Mike, by surprise and he went on to talk about how they are part of a street ministry group called "Awake the Nation" which focuses on helping people to know God is there by showing them tangible things such as healings and things of that nature. It's hard to expain and doesn't really matter all that to the story. We went on to tell him about our role of helping people develope faith in Jesus Christ, and told him about a story from the Bible where Jesus Christ tells Thomas that "Blessed is he who has not seen but believes." (It was the first time I've been able to use the Bible on the Street to really teach, usually people use it as a bashing weapon so we avoid using it, but with him we felt we could really teach him with it.) It really caught his attention and you could see him running over everything we said in his mind! We then kept talking and he asked what else we teach, we talked with him about Authority is something we teach about, and used a scripture out of Acts 8 to help him understand a bit more, that really caught his attention! He then asked about how the Book of Mormon really came to be and seemed like he had some Anti up his sleeve to throw at us, so be took a copy out and read to him straight out of the Introduction, which answered his question! We gave him the copy and set up another time to meet! He came to us originally to try to convert us to is ways, but found himself pulled in by the Spirit! Such an amazing miracle!

Wednesday was rainy and freezing cold! I can testify that rain is way worse then snow when you're out in it and the wind is blowing! We were soaked to the bone, so we decided to go out by some Less-Active members way out in the country. We were able to meet a few of them and teach a lesson. Besides the rain and wind, it was wonderful :)

Thursday we had to drive down to Windsor because I had to give my first Baptismal Interview! it was an awesome experience, it was so cool to be there with someone who had just discovered the restored gospel, and he had such a sweet testimony. My favorite was asking him the last question which is "When you are baptized you make a covenant with God to take upon yourself the name of Jesus Christ and keep the Commandments, are your ready to make this covenant and strive to be faithful to it?" It was such a powerful experience! 

Sunday was the day of miracles, it was such an amazing day! We started off with a church, which was wonderful as always, we then had an appointment about 30 minutes away in Ridgetown, when we got to our appointment, we weren't able to find them and they weren't home which was depressing, but we were having dinner with a family out that way so we headed over there and had a wonderful pancake dinner, and their kids kept saying "come outside and play with us" so we went outside with them for 5 minutes and their chickens had gotten out of their coop, so we chased them down and caught them and put them back in the coop, turns out this family also are shi tzu breeders, and they have like 12 Shi Tzu's! After dinner is when the miracles started happening one after another.

We stopped by our Investigator Kerra, she is a young mom, and we haven't been able to sit down and have a solid lesson with her, but we have talked with her a lot. Every time we drop by there isn't a 3rd male so we can't go in and teach, but every time we set an appointment, something falls through and she has to cancel or we do. And, like normal, yesterday her Boyfriend wasn't home, but we talked at the door for a few minutes and the biggest miracle of the week, she mentioned how her lawyer invites her out to his church all the time so I asked her if her Lawyer's last name was Sandor, she went on to tell us that it was him and she was like a Dad to her! Well, that is actually President Sandor, the Stake President in the London Stake here! Turns out she has had the influence of the church from two directions so far! We gave her a Book of Mormon to read and she texted us last night letting us know she was nearly half way done and wanted a bible as well! :D MIRACLES! 

We then went by a potential investigator named James, who was sick, but wanted us to come back again next week, he even said "Ah man, I really want to sit down and talk, but I've got the flu" I'm kinda glad he didn't invite us in, because you could tell he was sick by the way he looked!

We then have been trying to find a Less-Active girl who was a referral for us, we only knew where her Mom and Boyfriend live so we went by there and talked to her mom's boyfriend, who was like "Ya man, she just lives around the corner" I had to put in the "ya man" because he is from Trinidad and they always say that. Turns out she was home and super happy to see us, we even set up a time to meet with her this week and she wants to come out to church again!

The Last miracle of the day, it was 8 o'clockand we were prompted to go by a Less-Active family, so we did and they let us right in! The mother told us that she is kicking her smoking habit, and her daughter came in to listen to the lesson, pretty soon her roomate Will came in as well and wanted to learn more about the Book of Mormon. Yesterday was such a cool day, full of many miracles! 

That's it for this week from Elder Taylor and Elder Certonio! Love you all!

Elder Taylor

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

In memory of Jumbo 02/22/16

Here is a picture of Jumbo the Elephant in St. Thomas. Jumbo was hit and killed by a train there so they created this huge statue of it.. Canadians are weird. 

District Meeting 02/22/16

Goodbye Elder Session 02/22/16

(Thankfully he's just headed home.)

Here, There & Everywhere 02/22/2016

This week was one crazy one for sure! When I started off in Chatham my companion was having some Medical things that he had to go home for a few months to get taken care of, and instead of waiting 5 days until transfers, he went home Thursday, which threw a curveball into things. We got the call and they let us know that we were going to drive to London and meet the Zone Leaders, from there we drove to Woodstock to drop him to another set of Elders who drove him to meet the Assistants (Takes a while to get around here) from there I stayed with the Zone Leaders for Thursday and Friday. We had a great time in London, tons of driving, we had to go to Chatham on Friday morning because I had to do District Meeting, so after that we travelled back and had some awesome appointments in London. On Friday night we had an awesome stake activity where the missionaries in London helped with a bunch of activities. The entire night was focused on member missionary work, at the end all the missionaries gathered and sang "Called to Serve" for the entire stake, the spirit was strong! After that We went back to the Zone Leader's apartment and spent the night there with Them and St. Thomas Elders. Saturday morning at 6 we got up and drove to St. Thomas where we got ready and had studies and then travelled to Chatham for a lesson with Bruce!

Bruce is an awesome man we met 2 weeks ago, he so kind and down to earth and we taught him the restoration in Tim Horton's. We are meeting with him again and are going commit him to come out to church with us on Sunday! After that we worked around Chatham, stopping in Ridgetown on our way back to St. Thomas we went by a man named Brad, who we left a Book of Mormon with, he seemed really interested and invited us to come back this week, so we go meet with him Thursday! We made it back to St. Thomas for a delicious dinner appointment, and ended the night at their Ward Coordination meeting. Sunday morning was a mad rush, Elder Bybee and Elder Fillmore dropped me off on splits with our Ward Mission Leader, Brother Hunter in Chatham for Church! Brother Hunter is the best, he takes such good care of us missionaries. He comes out teaching with us all of the time, and has us over for dinner a ton! After getting back to St. Thomas we had a BBQ with a potential investigator, and it was awesome There were 10 people there and we taught all of them, it was sweet. Sam, the one who invited us, has some awesome questions and wants her son to be Baptized. The BBQ was actually at this guy's home, his name is Robert Redford, and no it is not the Sundance Kid... It was the biggest Miracle I've seen in a while!! Such an incredible lesson and she is so prepared! 

That is a short rundown of our weekend in the Trifecta! We've had a great time, but I'm excited to get back to Chatham with Elder Certonio, who I actually know from before the mission. It's really strange, but I met him at the Teton Base Camp 2 years ago, and after the camp we ended up becoming facebook friends, so I don't know him super well, but last transfer I met him at the mission office, and we were laughing about how crazy that was, now he is coming here with me! This is his 3rd transfer, so he's still pretty new, but hey, so am I. Weird to think that I'm starting my 6th transfer in the CTM! 

Tonight I am headed up to Brampton and I'm spending the night at the Assistant's place, tomorrow we get A BRAND NEW CAR! I'm excited, sounds like it is a new Nissan Rouge, first time driving a new car though! Hopefully it still has the new car smell! 

I love you all, and Hope you have a wonderful week! 

Enjoy this picture of our funeral service for Elder Session who goes home this week from my District.

Elder Taylor

Ponderize: D&C 61: 2-3

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

It's Officially Cold

Hope you all had a fantastic week! I really don't have a ton to write about this week, so I'll try to stir up as much as I can! But this last weekend it got super cold, Elder McKinnon told me up North it got to -48C which is way cold! Here the Coldest it got during the day was -17C without windchill, so it was pretty brisk to say the least, but they say it's suppose to be above freezing for the rest of the season now! We are just outside what they call the snow belt, so we didn't get a ton of snow, but London which is about an hour away got 3 feet of snow, I wish we got that much snow but we didn't! 

Last week we started to teach an awesome man named Peter, he is a bit older and we met him the week before on the street one night. We have taught him twice now and he has a Date that he is working towards for baptism, unfortunately he didn't come to church and then he bombed our last appointment, so we are going to try to get by him tonight or tomorrow morning! But, we saw a miracle from the Bombed appointment! His building manager told us he was probably at Tim Horton's downtown so that's where we headed, after searching for him with no luck, we ran into another guy named Bruce! Bruce is so nice and the most down to earth man! We talked with him a bit and then he even asked if he could give us a hug, you know we did! We are meeting with him on Saturday to teach him the Restoration!

Yesterday we went up to Walpole Island to meet with some of the Less-Active members up there and a man named Willy who we taught up there last week. The only problem with the native Reservations is that nobody there keeps appointments, they say "If you make an appointment, that's setting up a time they won't be home". But we were able to meet with some members up there and teach a few good lessons! 

On Sunday we went to this small town called Grand Point, it's actually not even a town, it's a village, but we tracted out the entire thing, which isn't saying a lot since there are only 20 or so homes. But on the last door we knocked the lady asked if she could have a Book of Mormon, and figures we had just given our last one out, so we are taking her one this week!

Last week I had exchanges with Elder Olson and Elder Gibb, both from Alberta, I spend the night in London with Elder Gibb, and it's always fun to be in an actually City, sooooo many people to talk to, it's such a different experience from Good ol' Chatham!

That's really it for this week! Transfers are next week, hopefully I get to stay here with Elder Ditty for a while!

Love, Elder Taylor

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Alonso & Mercedes' Baptism

One Crazy the car 02/08/15

Last week was quite the week, seemed like we were driving all over the place. Tuesday was insane! We had to wake up and travel to London in the morning for an appointment and once we finished there we had to shoot back to help a Less-Active sister in the ward move a washer and dryer, and found out she needed soooo much more help than just moving a washer and dryer. Her Husband had a dislocated shoulder, and she has a baby that is like 2 months old! So we helped move the washer and Dryer and then we had to head to Wallisburg which is about 30 minutes North for a few appointments and dinner with a Member. Brother Howe is known for the triple challenge with missionaries, which is eating enormous amounts of food, there is a hamburger with 1lbs of meat, a panzaratti the sized of a watermelon, and a huge breakfast. So we tackled the challenge by having the breakfast, I've never eaten so much food before in my life. But anyhow, afterwards we traveled back to Chatham to help the Sister move again. After all that we returned home exhausted, I fell asleep that night in like 30 seconds! 

Thursday night we had to travel again to London for Zone council, which was tons of fun. We stayed in the Zone Leaders apartment that night, so that we didn't have to wake up super early to drive in the morning! After the wonderful Zone Council we got all you can eat sushi, yuuuummmm, and then had exchanges! Elder Ray came to Chatham with me and I really learned a lot from him about trying to get to know the people we contact while tracting or talking to people on the street! Elder Ray has been out for about a year and in serving in Windsor. He is one of the English Elders there and he is originally from Idaho.

Yesterday after Church we went and visited a sister in the Hospital who had just recently had surgery. She has been Less-Active for a while but really enjoyed our visit, and hopefully we will be able to go out and visit here once she is home from the Hospital and help her to start coming back to church! After That we headed out to Mitchell's Bay, which is on Lake St. Claire. It's a lake that sits between Lake Erie and Lake Huron (I think). We had never been there before, but once we got there we realized it was a place full of summer homes, and retired fisherman! Everybody there was so so nice and talked with us, unfortunately we weren't able to find anybody too interested, but a lot of the time, it's the seeds planted that count! One Lady we met even has children out in BC that joined the church, we were able to send her to the Church's website so that she could learn more about what her children believed!

This last week a lot of our solid investigators decided they were happy with where they were at, which was a bit sad for us, but I know that someday they will make the changes necessary in their lives, so this week we are going out to find those who are prepared! We have an appointment with a girl named Karramay this week, she is solid! Already read the Book of Mormon, but she read it like a Novel, so we are going to teach her how to read scripture.

Well, I love you all so much! I hope you have a fantastic week full of missionary opportunities!

 Love, Elder Taylor

Monday, February 1, 2016

Work in Progress

Wo I Wo De Wypo 02/01/2016

Alanso and Mercedes got Baptized this Week!! I am so excited, even though I wasn't able to be there, it brings such a peaceful feeling to know that I was able to be there to help them along their process to conversion! I'll send a picture when I get one from Elder Jones! 

This week was an absolutely incredible, we were able to see and do so much! Tuesday we started our day by heading out to Blenheim which is down South of Chatham, there we planned to stop by a few Less-active members and to work around in the area. We were blessed to find Carol who has already read the entire Book of Mormon, but doesn't know the history of it! We are super pumped to meet with her again! We went by later in the week but she wasn't home, we stopped by again last night and she said to come back on Thursday! Right down the street from her we also met a guy named Carl who wants to learn more about how Prophets can be alive today. It's amazing how the Lord places people in our path that he has been preparing to receive the gospel. I've really seen throughout my mission! 

After Blenheim we made our way to Ridgetown, about 15km East of Blenheim. There we met a guy named Spencer, who at first wasn't too interested in talking to us, but we started talking about the Deer on his wall and how we were both Hunter's as well he really opened up to us and said we could stop by sometime and talk with him! Blessings!

After that we headed to Morpeth, where we had a dinner appointment with the Emerson's who are some members in our Branch here. Now let me paint a little picture of Morpeth. There are like 10 streets in the whole town, they say the population is 200 people, but i don't believe it because it's probably like 20 people. There isn't even a gas station in Morpeth! We walked past a pasture with 2 cows in it and they ran over to look at us, guess we were the most exciting thing that Morpeth has seen in quite some time. 

After Dinner we had to head to the opposite side of our area for exchanges with the Leamington Elder's. We got to our meeting place and while we waited for them to arrive we found a kitten, whom we proceeded to name Laman... If only we were aloud to have pets he would have come home with us! Elder Sessions came with me to Chatham and we had a lot of fun, we also got to help one of the members move here. It's been a while since I've done some good lifting, so it felt good.

On Friday I went on Exchanges with Elder Mak who is one of the Windsor Mandarin Elders! We had a super good time! The entire time I was helping him to learn how to pronounce the "R" sound because in Mandarin and Cantonese they say a "W" instead. He was helping me to learn how to pronounce the name of the church in Mandarin and also taught me how to say Wo I Wo De Wypo, which means "I love my Grandma" We had a grand time, and as we were out tracting together we met Richard, man i am pumped about Richard! Richard is like 30ish, and is Jamaican. He is super relaxed, and when we met with him yesterday, we were able to invite him to be baptized and he said accepted! We are so excited to meet with him again this week, we are going to teach him the Plan of Salvation this week!

Today we are headed up to Walpole island again to work on our fish carvings with Brother Smith, it is super fun! Best thing to do here in Chatham on a P-day :)

Love you all!

Elder Taylor