Week 20

Week 3 of Transfer 3
I was a sinner this week and didn't keep a day by day log. Sorry y'all. I am apologizing now. 

But we had a good week! Other than we weren't able to get anyone to church this week, which was sad. We spent Christmas Eve at a members home and we had Mexican food! It was really good food and they were really nice to us. They tried to make it the best Christmas Eve ever! It was kinda strange not being home and not getting to partake of our Family Traditions, but overall, it was a great Christmas Eve! 

It was sunny and 80 degrees outside all week. Including but not limited to Christmas, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Eve Eve. So we turned down the Thermostat on Christmas Eve. Then we put on Sweatshirts and PJs and made Hot Chocolate and pretended like it was actually cold outside. It was good!

On Christmas, we woke up and opened presents! Thanks family! Then we went to District Meeting and had a Christmas lesson. After District Meeting, Sister Longhurst made us all breakfast and it was absolutely amazing! But there was no Breakfast Cake. Sad day. 

We went from District Meeting to the Breauxs house. There we were able to talk to our families over Skype for a little while! It sounds like home is doing good and hasn't really changed too much since I left. I mean, I've only been gone about 5 months, but still. 

After Skyping, we went to the church to play Basketball with an investigator that the Hermanas have! It was really fun! Then it started raining. Then we went to the Breauxs again for dinner! Then we went home. 

Love y'all! Hope y'all have a very Happy Holiday season! 

-Elder Allen

Week 19

UnRated Version of Week 18 or 19. Fix before sending home!!!!
Week 18 or 19 or something like that? Shoot. I'm losing track. Transfer 4 Week 1. 12/7/15-12/13/15 
Today was transfers. Elder Leftwich got transferred and I'm staying in Beaumont. My second transfer meeting and I was kinda nervous about what would happen. They split us up and I got to see some of my old MTC friends that I haven't seen since we left transfers number one. That was cool to see.

My new companion is named Elder Biesinger! He came out with me and is a very hardworking missionary who wants to do right. He is going to be fantastic for Beaumont. 

We spent this morning shopping for stuff that we needed. After we shopped, we spent quite a little while reviewing the Ward Directory and planning for the week. Then we went outside to go and contact some people. As we were going outside, Dawn, the lady upstairs that fed us the very first night that we were in Beaumont, was moving. So we helped them for a while then went out to give Elder Biesinger a quick tour of the area. We came back and Dawn and her husband had pizza for us as a thank you gift! They are super nice people and I will be sad to see them go. They let us share a quick message with them about the Savior and agreed to come to church if their schedule allowed it! We will see what happens.

We had a lesson with J tonight. He is progressing but we have to push his baptismal date back till a little bit later. We taught him about the 10 commandments and committed him to live them all! Super cool lesson and the Spirit was so strong!

Today we biked. And biked. And biked. And did that some more. We biked a lot. I would guess that we biked about 20 or 25 miles throughout the day. It wasn't too much, but it was enough to make you sore and tired by the end of the day. Other than that, it was a fantastic day!!

We started out the morning by biking. We were knocking a few doors and ran across a nice Catholic lady named Samantha. She listened to our quick spill about Jesus Christ and why He was born and then asked us to come back! So will happily oblige. 

Then we went to Sonic cause it was 50 cent corndog day and the Zone Leaders had a bunch of free coupons that they let us use. It was so nice of them.

Then we went biking some more! We went and knocked a few more doors in an apartment complex and found another new investigator! Elder Biesinger has never seen so many new investigators in one day cause his last area was all rich white people. Overall, a really fantastic day

We ended the day by biking to the church for a Ward activity. We then proceeded to knock on peoples doors but instead of asking them if they wanted to listen to a message about The Savior's Birth, we just started singing about it. Caroling down here is a little bit different cause there is no snow. (yet- I'm still hoping and praying for a Christmas miracle...) But it was a good day and we came home dead tired and are now proceeding to go to bed.

Today was weekly planning! We had a good time planning and rearranging furniture and getting to know each other a little bit better. Elder Biesinger is a really good guy who just wants to do the right thing. He will be exactly obedient to the White Handbook, which is super amazing! We are gonna do great together this transfer because we are both working to achieve a common goal. 

We got out and contacted a little bit. Knocked a few doors, but really nothing came of it. After that we went to the Latson's house and gave a blessing. The Latson's are a nice Part Member family that we are teaching right now. That was good

After that we biked to the church for a lesson with John! John is doing really well and progressing! 

This morning we had Zone Meeting! It was a fantastic meeting and I learned so much. The Spirit was so strong in the room and I honestly feel that the unity that our zone has right now will enable us to do fantastic things. After that, we stayed at the Beaumont Chapel and helped set up for the Christmas Party tomorrow night. We strung lights all over the gym and it looks fantastic! We are inviting quite a few people to this party and I'll let you know how it goes. 

We spent most of the day biking around talking to people cause we are trying to increase the number of investigators in our teaching pool. Nothing too solid came out of it. 

I have in my backpack right now as this is being typed 3 Carolina Reapers. Elder Biesinger is gonna eat some of one, Elder Berry (DL) is gonna eat some of it and Hermana Conrad (new Hermana in the District) is gonna eat some of it. The rest of us have already eaten Reaper and had a very near death experience but are dumb enough to do it again with them. And if there is any left over, I am mailing it home. Dad, make some salsa if there is any left over. I'd rate it about a 20 or so.

Saturday 25.29 Miles today. 50 or so total for the week. But future totals won't count the 50 previous today.
We are starting to keep a day by day log of the mileage that we go. So yep, y'all will be getting a report of how far we are riding on our bikes. Its something that I have wanted to do for a while, but haven't because we haven't had an odometer. So yep! This'll be fun

We had a blast today! We were able to talk to a lot of people and share the new Christmas video quite a bit! We knocked doors almost all day cause there was nothing else to do and we wanted to be somewhat productive. We are trying to get the members involved because missionary work is nothing without the members. 

Today we had church with a lot of rain. The rain scared everyone away from church and our congregation was super small.

We got outside in the rain on our bikes and it was fantastic! There was nobody outside and it was super hard.

-Elder Allen

Week Something (18)

W2 of T3
Tuesday Our Big Sour Lake Trip day
Well we woke up this morning planning on heading out at about 9:00. Then the other Elder came over for a joint companionship study. They stayed for a while then we left at about 9:30. Elder Dominguez left some things over at our house so we dropped them off. We got on the road at approximately 9:53 or so. 

We arrived in Sour Lake at approximately 11:57 and 32 seconds. (Jk, I don't actually know the exact time, but it sounds cooler to say something exact.) We rolled into town and stopped and bought some Powerade and then the miracles started! Cause ya know, they hadn't started yet. Lemme back up a little bit. On the ride to Sour Lake, we had a slight tail wind. It allowed us to average 18.1 MPH out there, stops included. It was difficult. But it was awesome. Every time a semi passed us on a few feet to our left, we immediately bumped up about 3 MPH. And every time a semi passed us going the other way, we dropped about the same. There must be opposition in all things. The good done by the Good Semis had to be counteracted by the Bad Big Trucks. Then we got to the Sour Lake sign and took a few selfies when there were no cars coming, (so we didn't look like tourists) and took a picture of the odometer. Roughly 18 miles to Sour Lake. Then another 4 to the family that we wanted to visit. We had a good chat about the Gospel and shared the new Christmas Video with them. Then the 4 miles back into town. Then we stopped at Subway and ate food cause we didn't bring food. Smart right? We didn't bring water either. Really Smart, right? We stopped at another members house and she was astounded that we had biked the 20 odd miles to stop and see her. It made an impression on her and everyone else that we saw today. Amazing. Then we biked 5 miles north to go see another family that ended up not being home. So we knocked doors, cause what else would we do with our free time? We found a few people that wanted to hear about what we were doing in Sour Lake. Nothing too solid though. 

The atmosphere in Sour Lake is completely different than that of Beaumont. Everyone wanted to talk to us. Everyone wanted to know why there were two guys in white shirts and ties riding around their town in the middle of nowhere. The members that we saw were astonished that we had biked that far out. It was amazing!

But we started back to catch a dinner appointment in Beaumont. And remember that tail wind we had on the way out? Ya, it was now in our faces. And it made it really hard on two 18 year olds trying to pedal as hard as they could but had already exceeded their limited number of pedal strokes for the day. A member stopped. He asked if we wanted a ride. We told him yes. So we got a ride back to Beaumont. The End! 

We had Christmas Conference! There were a lot of speakers and they were all good! I learned so much that I can take back and apply to our area!

We watched the Cokeville Miracle for our Christmas movie! It was a really good movie with a very nice moral to it!

We got out Christmas Packages! Thanks to all that have sent them!

We had weekly planning today! We also did a district lunch today because we wanted to make pancakes and eat Carolina Reapers. It was a pain. Literally. And it hurt. And i have already done it, but I was dumb enough to eat some more. Then we went out with a priest and knocked doors! We found a few people, but none were too solid. 

We had district meeting this morning. Then we had our District Lunch. After that we went to a lesson and contacted a referral. Then we biked around and then had a lesson with J. J is coming along, but we keep having to push his baptismal date back because he still has some trials that he is overcoming

We were on exchanges today. We had a fun time contacting people! Then we had a fun time talking and visiting people. We gave a blessing also. And we helped set up for a Christmas party that night. Then we went to the Christmas party and I beat everyone at Foosball. It just came natural and I only lost once and it that's because it took two of them to beat me. But I only lost by one point. But I won all the other times. 

We had our ward Christmas program today. It was good and the choir was amazing! I loved it!

We put K on date today! Finally! We don't know how solid it is, but she is on date finally!

-Elder Allen

Week 17 11/23/15-11/29/15 - Thanksgiving

We took one of the priests out knocking doors with us. We taught a bunch of lessons and found a few new investigators. All in all it made great day. Then that night we had another lesson with John. he is progressing, but we have to push his baptismal date back a little while, which means he won't be baptized this transfer.:(

We taught an old lady named I today and she is awesome! She has short term memory loss, but it makes for some fun lessons! And if you haven't seen one of the large print Triple combinations, you should. The thing is as big as a small table and weighs about as much. We had to tote two of those things across town on our backs, along with all our usual gear. It made it really heavy and we got really tired really fast. On top of that, it started raining. But they were so excited to be able to have  a book that they could actually read!

Thanksgiving! We got a text last night saying that today was a non Proselyting day. It was a straight service day, but no one wants service done on Thanksgiving... So we didn't do too much.We then went to Robert's house for Thanksgiving and he and his family fed us. We had a Cajun Thanksgiving full of spices and seasoning. But they had also emailed our families and asked for a special family Thanksgiving recipe. So we had a wonderful surprise as we were dishing our plates and saw the special dishes that were labled. It was amazing and awesome! Thank you Mom!

We had District Meeting today. It was good! After District meeting we contacted a little bit! We had another lesson with John today! It went really well!

We did more service by putting round two of rocks in the flower beds! It was a lot of fun! We had another lesson with I today! She was super excited still about her Book of Mormon! After that, we started biking around, but it started raining and then we went inside for a few minutes. After that, we went back outside and tried to contact some more, but we didn't have too much success because it was still raining slightly.

This morning we went to church and it was super amazing! John was our only investigator that came, which is sad cause we had quite a few commitments.:( But John is really progressing and is even starting to do missionary work on his own by passing out copies of the Book of Mormon and introducing his friends to the Gospel. Truly amazing to see the change that has happened in his life since he has met with us. Bro Hall, the Ward Mission Leader, drove us around to go and visit some people today. We shared the new Christmas Initiative with a lot of people today and it was amazing! I could feel the Spirit every time the video was playing and if you haven't seen it I would highly recommend it! 

It hit me that I'm almost a quarter of the way done with my mission. Transfers are next week, so don't freak out if I don't respond or something like that. So don't send any letters that will get here after next Monday! Cause I don't know if I'll still be here or not.

Love y'all! Thanks for the letters and emails and I'll talk to you next week!

-Elder Allen

Week 16 11/16/15-11/22/15

Today was pday. We went bowling and it was super fun! I didn't do so well though... So I will not state my score here.

We had another lesson with John today. We had the Roberts, an older couple from the ward, come with us. The Roberts love us and they remind me a lot of Gram and Grandpa. They lived in Oklahoma before they came to Texas and they talk about it a lot. Anyway, the lesson with John went very well! Today was the first day that the temperature really dropped down. 

Funny Story... As we walked outside to get on our bikes at the beginning of the day, we were talking about how hot it was and about how we wished that the temperature would just suddenly drop like 10 or 15 degrees. As we were biking, the rain came in. It was light at first and just kind of off and on. As we stopped to talk to some Hispanic people, the rain really started just pouring. It was raining really hard, but it was still hot and humid. As we started biking again, the rain kept on coming down in bucketfuls. We turned the corner and the temperature just dropped. Like I have never seen or felt the temperature drop so fast. It must've dropped like 20 degrees. And the wind picked up and chilled us right to the bone. We were freezing cold. It was crazy. The temperature drop was instantaneous and immediate and the rain kept coming down. We made it to the church and after staying outside for a second to drain off, walked into the nice warm heated building. We were cold the rest of the day. You know what I learned from this experience? Be careful what you wish for, because Heavenly Father has a sense of humor and the windows of Heaven will pour out more blessings than you even wished for. So what could we do? We said a prayer of gratitude thanking Heavenly Father for listening to us and taking into account our needs and wants. I also  learned that we should just be happy with what we have and not wish for anything else than what he has already given us...

Well we had a scheduled bash today. We met this guy a few weeks ago and he told us that he wanted archeological evidence that the Book of Mormon is true. Thats hard on missionaries! We aren't really allowed to research that topic. He told us that he knew all about Moronis Promise in the last chapter of Moroni. He claimed that if he took that promise, then he was already giving the Book credibility. What I ended up pointing out to him is this, in the promise, Moroni says to pray AFTER you read it and to ask if these things are NOT true. What this means is that after you have gotten this far into the Book, you should already have a knowledge and testimony that it IS true... So I asked him if he had read the Book, to which he answered no... Theres your problem... There was really nothing that we could do after that so we basically just left after that.

After that whole thing, we went on quick exchanges with the South Missionaries. I went with Elder Berry, our DL because he had a Baptismal interview to conduct and Elder Leftwich went with Elder Dominguez to talk to a referral from the ZLs, who had set up an appointment at the same time as the Baptismal Interview. So that was fun.

We had weekly planning today. That was good. This is how weekly planning goes. We consider every investigator, every member, every less active member, every plans to find new investigators, every referral that we haven't contacted, every meeting that we have and then we make plans and goals for what we want to accomplish with each of them in the next week. It is extensive...

We had another lesson with John today. It was a very good lesson and the Spirit was super strong, as it always is. 

We had district meeting! Our Senior couple, the Longhursts, make us dinner every Friday. This week Sister Longhurst made us Thanksgiving dinner and it was super good! We had 4 different pies that she had made along with Turkey, Stuffing, mashed potatoes and such. Super amazingly wonderful Utah Thanksgiving. 

We had another lesson with K this week that went very well! She is making progress, but still won't come to church.

We had a lesson with John tonight. There is a senior couple in Houston that do a really good Word of Wisdom lesson and we had them come out and teach John and they loved it! John thought that it was very beneficial.

We had a service project all morning. We were putting rocks in the flower beds in the Beaumont Chapel. And then the rain came. For the next two hours we were working in the rain. It was a lot of rain. Again. And we were working in it all day.

I was on exchanges with Elder Dominguez. We had to go to a baptism that was in Spanish... As it happens, we were also the witnesses... So we didn't know what the prayer was... That made it interesting.

We had a good time and taught quite a few lessons! But we were in Southern Beaumont, not in our area. 

We went to church and had a good time! John showed up and it was way good! He learned a lot! We all learned a lot!

We taught quite a few lessons today just walking around in the cold. At least it wasn't wet... or Raining. But it was way good! and we were freezing all day cause it was like 50 degrees outside, but the wind and the humidity made it feel like it was negative a lot of degrees. 

-Elder Allen

Week 15 11/??/15-11/15/15

Pday! We ended up having to go give a blessing to a 8 month old that had swallowed a quarter... But they wouldn't let us back there 

Today we had a lesson with J! He is amazing! We committed him to read something every night from the BoM. We found John a few weeks ago knocking doors with R, our recent convert. Other than that, not much happened today.

We got out today and tried to have a lesson with a person that we contacted yesterday, who wasn't home. Surprise! But we decided to stay in the area and knock some doors. We were able to find a new investigator named Ot! He was an interesting case. While I was writing our number on the back of a pamphlet, my comp just straight up started testifying and teaching the Restoration. We ended up teaching him a 2 minute lesson and setting up a return appointment

Today was zone conference! It was a lot of fun and it was super spiritual! Amazing to learn so much! It was super good to see President and Sister Drake and they are amazing! Zone conference talked a lot about following up with our investigators every day, so that's what we are going to implicate. But J has been calling us everyday to let us know how his reading is going! So that's good I guess!

District meeting! Another day of meetings! Love them! It was super good! After more meetings, we had a lesson with K! It was super good and the Spirit was super strong. 

After K's lesson we biked around quite a bit. And then we had another lesson with John! R invited us and J over for dinner and fed us and then sat in and let us teach a lesson! Members are so important! They are amazing! When they testify, it brings the Spirit in a way that missionaries can't do. 

Today we made two trips out to China. We had a referral from a YSA member and they ended up being super legit! His name is W and he owns a tire shop. Anyway, he lives in Beaumont, not China and we don't get to teach him! Cause he's in the South area! And so does the other guy that we found out there! 

The next trip out to China was with Bishop to visit a less active family. It was a really good visit and Bishop is a super inspired man! 

Today was Ward Conference! So all the meetings were coordinated by the Stake auxiliaries. The meetings were all super inspired and J was there! He is amazing and super inspired! J is already doing missionary work and has introduced his family to us. He is planting seeds for us to harvest in the future! Super amazing and inspired guy!

We had dinner tonight with a family that made us Kolaches! I have never had one before and it was really good! Basically what they are is a roll with steak or sausage or boudain or some sort of meat inside them. They are amazing! 

-Elder Allen

Week 14 ?

So this week was difficult and we worked pretty hard and I didn't have a lot of time to keep a log, so I'll just briefly review the things that happened this week!

It rained a lot! So we focused a lot on the investigators that we already had instead of trying to find new investigators! Because we focused on the investigators that we already had, they made really good progress! We have a few of them on date and taught them each a lesson or two this week! 

We had J (one of the ones with a date) come to church! He enjoyed it! We had a multi stake conference that was broadcast from Salt Lake! Elder Oaks and a few other 70s talked and gave us really good direction on what to do with our futures! 

D also came! He's super cool and we met him through another member! We were able to teach him and he's going to get baptized in the future!

We talked to a lot of people this week and it was really fun! We ate dinner at a lot of members houses, cause they're really nice to us! The food was really good and we loved it! The ward down here is really cool! They are being nice to us missionaries and coming on lessons with us all the time! Members are the best kind of missionaries! Everybody knows someone that is ready to hear the Gospel, it's just up to them to find hat person and share it with them!

Miss y'all very much! Your prayers are felt and appreciated!

-Elder Allen

Focal Point Nov 2015

November 2015 

Added to the Fold 

Focal Point 

Beaumont Zone 
Teryn Farrow 
Catlyn Skinner 
Davin Soignet 
Jared Soignet 
Marissa Soignet 
Micah Wagner 
Broadway Zone 
Leo Martinez 
Nallely Martinez 
Emanuel Quesada 
Melissa Rodriguez 
Derek Rodriguez 
Constelacion Torres 
Emily Sanchez 
Kingwood Zone 
Vanessa Yescas 
Thomas Alger 

Orange Zone 
Jamie Decorte 
Sarah Decorte 
Edward Patton 
Charlene Patton 
Mandy Frazier 
Sunshine Lopez 
Casey Robilard 
Khalil Seller 
Pasadena Zone 
Tony Morales 
Ashley Smith 
Pine Trails Zone 
Wilfredo Molina 
Andres Rendon 
Summerwood Zone 
Tyler Ranges 
Amber Byford 
Matthew Hosking 
Donald Holcomb 

The Standard Bearers 
(met their baptism and reactivate goal) 
Kingwood Zone 
Hermanas Kikongi / Conrad 
Elders Murdock / Moeakola 
Elders Dabb / Paulson Pine Trails Zone 
Hermanas Wilson / Carling 
Elders Martin / Henrie 
Broadway Zone 
Elders Reed / Dennis / Roberts 
Elders Kohler / Ludlow 
Hermanas Davies / Barrus 
Hermanas Leiva / Owens 
Summerwood Zone 
Sisters Casas / Wilson 
Sister Johnson / Malm 
Pasadena Zone 
Elders Heath / Crawford 
Elders Rasband / Asay 
Hermanas Stevens / Hull 
Hermanas Johnson / Francis 
Sisters Wood / Knight 
Orange Zone 
Elders Roberts / Strong 
Sisters Castaneda / Sessions 
Elders Moos / Boyack 
Elders Knebell / Saunders 
Elders Harrington / Hansen 
Beaumont Zone 
Sisters Tanuvasa / Cooper 
Elders Lacusta / Swallow 
Elders McDonald / Forbush 

L to R: Sister Tanuvasa, Caitlyn Skinner, Sister Cooper 

L to R: Sister Cooper, Teryn Farrow, Bro.Hewlett, Sister Ta-nuvasa 

L to R: Elder Ludlow, Derrick Ramirez, Melissa Gallegos, and Elder Kohler 

L to R: Elder Wooton, Andres and Elder Nickolaus 

Convert Baptism - Our First Covenant 

L to R: Hermana Conrad, Hermana Kikongi, Vanessa Romero, Hermana Sharpe 

L to R: Hermana Johnson, Leonel Avalos, Hermana Fran-cis. 

L to R: Elder Smith, Brother John Hanks, Charlene Patton, Edward Patton, Elder Roberts, Elder Strong 

L to R: Elder Moeakiola, Brother Curtis, Brother Al-ger, Elder Murdock 

L to R: Hermana Leiva and Hermana Owens 
Leo and Nallely Martinez 

L to R: Hermana Davies, Hermana Barrus, Constelacion Torres, Gracie Rubio, Agustine Lopez 

L to R: Elder Moos, Sarah Decorte, Jamie De-corte and Elder Boyack 

L to R: Hermana Leiva and Hermana Owens 
Emmanuel Cisneros 

Convert Baptism - Our First Covenant 

L to R: Sister Wood, Ashley Smith, Sister Knight 

Arriving - 
Missionaries to Preach My Gospel 

Departing - Spiritually Mature 

Back: Elders Sirrien, Souza, Bingham and Hukill 
Front: Sisters Redford, Nielsen and Rawle, President and Sister Drake, Sisters Bushman, Browning, Ludlow and Mel-ton 

Back: Elders Roberts, Strong, Stevenson, Mitchell and Smith 
Front: Sisters Porter, Stiles, President and Sister Drake Sisters Rob-erts and Bonar 

L to R: Elder McDonald, Justin Livingston, Micah Wagner, El-der Forbush 

L to R: Kyle Staley, Marissa Yeagin, Elder La-custa, Devon Yeagin, Jerrod Yeagin & Elder Swal-low 

Convert Baptism - Our First Covenant 

Missionaries in the News 

President & Sister Drake 
Comments & Counsel 

Dear Family, Friends, and Missionaries, 
I have been truly touched by the reading we, as a mission, have been doing in the Book of Mormon. This week I have been focused on Ether 12. This chapter is a great teacher of Faith, Hope and Charity. These three qualities seem to permeate the ability to achieve the Celestial kingdom. I want to bring special atten-tion to verses 26-28 that talk about our weaknesses and why He gives us weakness. Verse 26 clearly warns us that many fools will make fun our weakness, not to help us, but to scornfully use us to their end rather than to our growth. " Fools mock, but they shall mourn; and my grace is sufficient for the meek, that they shall take no advantage of your weakness;" He goes on to further state if we will come unto him in humility he will make our weak things strong. A great promise. Verse 28 "Behold, I will show unto the Gentiles their weakness, and I will show unto them that faith, hope and charity bringeth unto me--the fountain of all right-eousness. 
We have been given weakness to help us better understand that it, with faith and hope can become a strength and only fools mock those that try to change and become obedient. Then through charity we ob-tain the "full fountain of righteousness." 
All of us need to continue, as he says in this scripture, to come to him and his grace will be sufficient. Re-pentance is the beginning of the process and His love propels us to succeed. Continue to put your faith and hope in him that we may all become partakers at that fountain of all righteousness. 
Our missionaries are doing great things and although we will miss those who have completed their service and returned home with honor, we are grateful for our newly arrived Sisters and Elders and look forward to serving with them in this great work. 
The Church is true! 
President Drake 


"If any man will do his will, he shall know of the 
doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I 
speak of myself." (John 7:17) 
“We recognize that as learners, you and I are to act 
and be doers of the word not simply hearers who 
are only acted upon. Are you and I agents who act 
and seek learning by faith, or are we waiting to be 
taught and acted upon? 
-Elder David A. Bednar 
(Seek Learning By Faith) 

The size of your faith or the degree of your 
knowledge is not the issue—it is the integrity 
you demonstrate toward the faith you do have 
and the truth you already know. 
-Elder Jeffrey R. Holland 
(Lord, I Believe) 

Love, Elder Hansen & Bond 

“Knowledge is like paint, worthless... until its applied.” 

Birthday Wishes 
01—Elder Noall 
01—Elder Bigler 
02—Elder Dennis 
05—Elder Futrell 
08—Sister Price 
08—Sister Bare 
10—Sister Thayne 
10—Elder Hyman 
11—Sister Sharpe 
14—Sister Rogers 
17—Elder Martin 
24—Elder Moeakiola 
25—Elder Swallow 
26—Sister Delgado 
28—Elder Haymans 

On 10s going to: 
Elder Strong and Wilder 
Elders Larsen and Daye 
Sisters Casas and Wilson 
Elders Ludlow and Kohler 
Hermanas Owens and Leiva 
Elders Galland and Adair 
Elders chamberlain and Stock 
Sisters Davies and Barrus 
Sisters Sahagun and Bidstrup 
On Their Apartment Inspection! 

Families ~ Up Coming Transfer Dates 
December 7—January 18—February 15 
Please do not send packages/mail to apartments the week prior, as they may be transferred and the U.S. Post Office will no longer forward mail without an additional charge

baptismal pictures to: 
When you email your pictures please label them with those who are in the picture 

All travel for missionaries going home is schedule 90 days prior to their departure. If you need to change airport destinations after that time, the family will be charged the change fee. Please call us if you have any questions at 281-xxx. PLEASE Notify the office EARLY to avoid change fees. 
Thank You 

Please keep the office updated if your: 
E-mail address -Street address -Phone number changes 
Bishop/Stake President changes—we need their new address/phone number 
Please e-mail the new information to: 


I will Stand for Truth and 

Return with Honor 

Week 13? 10/26/15-11/1/15

We had another pday... This time we stayed at the church by ourselves, cause everyone else was at transfer meeting. I'm still in Beaumont, but I'm don't training! And I'm still with my trainer

We don't have a car, so we weren't able to go shopping for food yesterday, so that's what we did this morning! The Ward trunk or treat is also coming up so we grabbed a bunch of flyers to pass out to random people and invite them.

We gave R (our recent convert) a call and asked him if we could meet with him. He said yes, so we went over for dinner and a had a lesson with him. It was a really good lesson and the Spirit was super strong!

We have a somewhat new district. Everyone has been together for the last two transfers and we just found out that everyone but the DL is staying for another one! Our district is fantastic! It is so much fun to be a part of it. We have breakfasts and lunches together all he time and I end up making pancakes a lot...:) that's what happened today! I got to make pancakes. It was a very nice honor and blessing to eat pancakes, cause my comp is sick of them... He won't eat them anymore. The pancakes were really good!! I put some blueberries in some. And I put other things in others, but they all turned out really well!

We had a lesson today with K. Her husband is a member and she has been investigating the church for quite some time, but she just won't commit to anything. But the lesson we had today was amazing! She really opened up to us and told us hat she already knew she was gonna get baptized, she just needed to know that all of this was for her, and not for anyone else. We were able to help her see how she would be able to tell if all of this is true. Remember my farewell talk? The one about knowing truth? Ya... That's come in handy so many times already. People want to know how to tell truth and I know how to direct them to that. Crazy how that works right? K said that she would think about it some more.

Tonight we had the trunk or treat! It was a lot of fun and most of the ward was dressed up in costumes. Here were a lot of Less active families and also a bunch of nonmembers there! Super cool how a party can bring everybody out... We were able to meet quite a few people!

Weekly planning is always on a Thursday. So surprise! We planned for the next week today. I caught a gecko and named him J. He was green sometimes and brown other times and I have a habitat on my desk. I tamed him and he sat on my arm. He's dead now:(

We had our Hour of Power tonight and we took R. We had him pray over a road that seemed good to him. Funny story, the road he picked is one that we have knocked over and over again. Another funny story, the first two houses we knocked on we taught lessons... Members combined with the full time missionaries are amazing. R said what each person at the houses need to hear and it's something that neither I nor Elder Leftwich would've thought to say. It was absolutely amazing! We taught the lesson and R taught the person from personal experiences. It was amazing.

Today was zone meeting! We got a new zone leader this transfer and he is amazing! Our new district leader is pretty cool too. Zone meeting was absolutely amazing! I was able to learn so much that I can now bring back to our area. We had a lesson after zone meeting with an older lady named Imogene. She's 89. I'll let y'all know what happens!

It rained all day. We got a text saying that we needed to stay inside for the day cause there was so much rain. It made for an eventful day...

We did what we could, but I hate being stuck inside the apartment. Halloween! Happy Halloween. R invited us over for dinner which we accepted, but we still had to be inside by 7:00. Dinner was good! Apparently the food that I know as 'Stuff over Fritos' is actually called Frito Pie... Essentially the same thing. 

We went to church and it was amazing! The newly called Houston temple president is from the Beaumont ward and the Bishop asked him to take the last few minutes and bear his testimony, which he did wonderfully and powerfully. He is a truly remarkable man. 

Other than that, it rained lot. All day. Again. We tried biking around, but there was nobody out. We tried knocking a few doors, but nothing. So we went around to members houses and actually met some of the members of the ward! It was really cool! 

Happy next week!

-Elder Allen

Week 12 10/19/15-10/25/15

Disclaimer: This week was a lot of contacting with not too much success. So this is short, just deal with that fact and move on!

Pday! You know how those go

Contacting! All our appointments fell through again. And we didn't get to do much. We were supposed to be on exchanges today, but the District Leader didn't get around to it... He had another appointment hat he had to be at, so we didn't do it today, but we are going to do it tonight and tomorrow!

Anyway, all our appointment fell through, it was just one of those days. We didn't know where to go or what to do. The APs gave us a challenge this last week, which was to literally flood the Earth with righteousness. They interpreted that as being hand out as many possible copies of the BoM as you can. So that's what we spent most of today doing. Talking and testifying of the BoM. It's amazing how powerful it is.

Exchanges! Elder Udall and I were on exchanges today! Once again, all our appointments fell through. So we rode around all day, talking to each other and everybody who we could find. We got about 20 street contacts today, but only passed out 2 copies of the BoM. It was a tough day today.

Elder Leftwich and I are back together now. Somewhere there is a hurricane about to hit. I think Mexico. But they're predicting rain for this entire weekend.

We had weekly planning this afternoon and we decided to make it fun.
We made cookies! But we only had two pie tins. So we could only cook
15 bite sized cookies at a time... We pulled the first tins out and realized we didn't have a cooling rack. So we looked around a little bit and decided to take our fridge apart. We pulled one of the wire shelves out and it happened to fit perfectly over our sink. So we cooled our cookies on a refrigerator shelf over the sink full of dirty dishes. After that, we went out and biked around! Our appointment (singular this time) moved to tomorrow. We biked and biked and handed out copies of the BoM. I can't remember how many we handed out, but it was a lot compared to the typical day.

We had district meeting this morning and it was the last district meeting as a district. Our district hasn't changed in 2 transfers and we've gotten pretty close. But we are going to see what happens for Monday! We will get calls tomorrow! We had a lesson lined up and she actually decided to come! While we were biking to the lesson we contacted a guy who we'd seen before. Last time we saw him, he was having a rough day and asked us to pray with him, which was super cool! We were able to follow up with him and he told us that our prayer on his behalf was the point that changed his entire day around!
Super cool. We handed him a copy of the BoM and taught him about it.
We also delved straight into the Restoration! So we had a lesson on the way to another lesson! First time this week!

Our lesson was good. It was with P. She is very non committal and we have trouble committing her to do anything, but she is e sweetest lady ever!shes almost read the entire BoM from the time we first saw her, yet she isn't making very much progress. She loves talking about Jesus Christ and His grace! She won't come to church unless God tells her to... So we are praying for that.

Transfer calls come today! It started raining this morning and hasn't stopped since. We had nothing better to do so we started biking! Yay!
You step outside and two seconds later, you wanna go back inside! But you just keep on pedaling. We had a goal to pass out as many copies of the BoM as we could. We were still a few short of our goal, but then the miracle happened. We said a prayer and told Heavenly Father that we were going to give out the rest of our copies. We still had like 10 copies in he box. So we prepped them and loaded them up in our backpacks and rode around, cause knocking doors looking like cold, scared, wet, miserable, whimpering, puppies isn't the best idea. We don't get inside like that. So we biked around and contacted people outside! A lot of them had compassion on us and told us to step into heir garage for a few minutes. We were then able to pull out a copy of the BoM and present it to whoever the person was. This happened over and over again and by the end of the day, we had passed out all 10 copies in about 4 hours before the rain fm got so bad that we decided to go home... That bumped us up to 37 copies for the last week and a half from the time of the APs challenge. Crazy, huh!?

Well calls came and I'm staying Beaumont! And I have another 6 weeks with my trainer! Our district will be the exact same for another 6 weeks with the exception of Elder Udall, our district leader. So this will be the 3rd transfer of the best district in the mission!

Church! Yay! I like church. It's one of my favorite times of he entire week. It was the primary program and I was reminded a lot of back home. It rained all last night and all today too. We didn't have any investigators at church cause the roads were so bad. Half our ward didn't show up... Crazy. Lots of rain.

After church it rained a lot. All day. I like rain. You never get dehydrated while riding a bike in the rain!

-Elder Allen

Week 11 10/12/15-10/18/15

Pday. Shopping. And such. Oh and soccer. I won.

We had president interviews today! That's was a lot of fun. While we weren't in talking to president, we were able to listen to the APs teach us about our missions and the purpose that we were sent to Houston. It was amazing to be in. The Spirit was so strong! After Interview Training, we went out and contacted a bunch of people! It was amazing! Then that night, we went and did some service for a member. We helped move a tree house, which was awesome! It's cool what a few extra hands can move!

We spent most of today calling members and trying to set up a bunch of appts throughout the next week. That was super good. We were able to talk to a lot of people, most of them less active or part member families!

After spending most of the afternoon calling people and cleaning out our phone, we decided to go out and contact. Because it's week 11, I (as the greenie) got to lead out the area. So I decided to go contact a bunch of people. So that's what we did. I had no idea where to go, so I just prayed the entire time. And I took turns when I got an answer. After quite a few turns and a half hour later of turning and turning back around. We turned down this one road, and there was a guy coming outside. He is a Chinese delivery guy who was in the middle of getting back in his car after delivering something. We contacted him and handed him a BoM. He started telling us about how he's always wanted one and how the the last missionaries didn't give one or explain where it came from to him, and that's what he wanted. So that's what we did. Super cool!

Fast forward 5 minutes and we'd moved down the street. There was a fellow out rebuilding an old motorcycle. We stopped and talked to him for quite a while! He was a super nice guy! We ended up teaching him the Resto and we also gave him a BoM. It was super cool and awesome!
Prayer works! And it can help you through anything!

Today was another testimony building day! We were just out contacting, cause you know, nothing else to do... And we actually have to be doing something in order for the Lord to work through us. So that's what we were doing! We were biking through this one area by the church and there was a black family outside! They were super nice. We know that cause we talked to them. We end up teaching them about the Resto. And we gave them all copies of the BoM! Lots of fun.

We then went down south to try another potential investigator and he wasn't home. Go figure. So we said another prayer to remember who we need to try in the area. We had two people come to mind. One was down the street and the other was around the corner. We decided to try the one down the street. As we were biking down the street she drove off in a car, going the other way. Obviously not her. So we went to the other one. She wasn't home either. So we stood in her driveway for a few seconds scratching our heads when another black family came outside across the street. They started putting up Halloween decorations and we biked across the street and asked if we could help, which they said yes to. Long story short, we ended up teaching them the Resto! And they accepted a few copies of the BoM. Super cool!

ZL exchanges. We had Elder Otterson with us. He came with us and we had a bunch of lesson set up from our day of calling members. He is a brilliant missionary and has a lot of offer us and he knows how to teach also. Every experience was a learning experience with him.
Amazing. We went and taught a bunch of members and asked for referrals from them. Did t get too many, but it was good. Definitely a learning experience.

Today was filled with service for a member. They were moving and we were able to help them move! Lots of fun and it helped us develop relationships with some members.

J came to church! Remember the one that came last week? Yep, same one. We haven't been able to teach him cause he's been super busy, but he said he liked church enough to come back next week. So he's totally going to keep coming to church! Super lots of fun! After church we biked a long ways. We were biking for a long time and we averaged about 20mph(estimation) cause I don't actually know. But we were moving really fast and my legs still hurt(Monday). We also did a lot of service last night too. We helped another family pack up to move, they are moving to St. George. That's about it for this week.

I ate pancakes almost everyday. That's a lot of pancakes.

-Elder Allen

Week 10 10/5/15-10/11/15

Pday! Yay! Lots of fun. Basketball. Email. Basketball. Soccer. More basketball. And piano.

I am with Elder Dominguez today. We are on exchanges. He came out with me and I don't know who decided to put two greenies together. We haven't a clue really what's going on. But we were able to go out and start biking around and talking to people. The other side of Beaumont is really ghetto. There are a lot of drug stops, you can just tell. It's super poor and impoverished and there are a lot of Black people there. We ate dinner at Taco Bell, saw a few people, knocked on a few houses, but weren't having any success at all.

I made pancakes again this morning. They were really good! I'm starting to wonder why I'm getting fat...;)

We went back and saw that lady the we scared the dickens out of. Actually we didn't talk to her. We talked to her not so happy and mostly angry and fuming husband... He 'kindly' told us to get off his porch and never come back. But we said sorry, so our debt has been paid. It's all better now. Cept for the fact that he doesn't have the Gospel in his life...

We had a really successful day today! We were able to teach quite a few lessons to investigators and street contacts alike! It was a lot of fun! We ran into this one guy, his name was Steve, and started teaching him a lesson. About halfway through we found out that he was a history teacher, which was cool. But we were able to tell him about the BoM and the origin of the American Indians and it totally made sense to him! He is a plane nut too, like me, and we got into a discussion about planes and WWII and stuff like that...;) kinda hard to not to with someone that likes it more than me. He's been to museums around the country and knows so much. He's never been to the one at Hill, but he was telling me all about the history of the B24 and such. It was a lot of fun stuff;)

We also taught K again today and finally found out what's holding her back from being baptized. She's been taking the lessons for two years now and doesn't believe the Joseph Smith had a vision... The missionaries just never taught her that. We were able to help her with that concern and helped her realize that if the BoM is true, then Joseph Smith saw the Father and the Son. So it was a really good lesson!

We were busy teaching lessons yesterday, so we didn't get to weekly planning. So we did it today after District Meeting! District meeting was way good! It was about planning with the Spirit and it was a lot of fun! We were able to take what we learned in District Meeting and apply it to our weekly planning.

Tonight we were biking around and decided to stop and talk to this one guy who was standing outside smoking a cigarette. It's about 8:00 ish and this guy is standing on the corner smoking. He has a pony tail. But something told us to stop, cause normally I wouldn't do that. So we stopped. Half an hour later, he's promised to read the BoM, pray about it, come to church and possibly be baptized... Crazy how that works, huh? His name is Johnny and he is part Native American, he has had contact with missionaries before, but never really talked to them. He loaded us up with water bottles (cause we're still biking, ya know) and told us that he'd see us on Sunday. We will see what happens I guess...

We had a bunch of lessons planned. We stopped at the first one. Not home. So we knocked some doors in the area. Then we went to the next lesson. He totally forgot and was leaving just then, so we knocked more doors. And so on all day long. It was frustrating.

We did have a lesson though with a less active family all the way out in China...(it's a little town, not like the one with billions of people) We've been working with this family for a while now and they come to church every once in a while, which is why we've been working with them. We had a good lesson and they said that they would be at church tomorrow!

Fast Sunday!!! Which means no pancakes...:( it's sad. I like pancakes. I've finally realized how much pancake stuff I've gone through and decided I should probably lay off a little bit... 

We went to church today and to our surprise, J (remember the guy from Friday night?) showed up! Just kinda out of the blue! So we sat with him and he asked lots of questions and he loved it! He said he couldn't make it to all 3 hours today, but he's going to try to make it to all 3 next week! Heck ya! We finally have an investigator that actually coming to church, first one since R, who was baptized last transfer. J had a really cool experience with Sacrament Meeting because it was Fast and Testimony meeting and he got to hear a lot of the members bear powerful testimonies about a living prophet and such. It's amazing how everybody says just the right thing. The members were fantastic in coming over to introduce themselves to him and inviting him back next week! It was an amazing experience!

Remember how yesterday we had a bunch of lesson planned, but they all fell through cept one? Yep. Same thing today. I love that so much. We went from having  

-Elder Allen

Week 9 9/28/15-10/4/15

Pday! We played bball at the church. Surprise! Then we went to dinner with our recent convert, they have us over basically every Monday for dinner and FHE. Dinner is always amazingly good and we love to go over there. This week we had French Toast and bacon and eggs and biscuits and donuts and juice. It was so good!

Anyway, we got back to the apt complex and there was a lady in the parking lot outside. She is staggering around the parking lot, plastered drunk. We were just about to go inside when she kind of weaves her way over to us and starts asking us what's going on in her life. We have no idea what's going on. So we took her home to the other side of the parking lot where her dad lives. But yep... First real encounter with a drunk person.

We spent most of today knocking doors. It rained most of the day, but it didn't rain too hard. After an afternoon of contacting, we decided to head home for the night. As we were riding past the street of someone we had found the other day, we felt prompted to go see if she was home. We had tried for the last week to see if she was home, but her husband had gone into surgery and was out for,a,week and so she had been running the business for him. Well we followed the prompting and knocked on the door and to our surprise, she was home! We got to talking about stuff again and had a nice little lesson and chat on her door. As we were leaving, she asked if she could take a picture of us to send home. So we consented and she sent a picture to mom! Super nice lady and I'll remember her forever because of that. So mom, that's the other half of the story about the picture... And thanks for the pants! They're awesome and comfortable!

Again, contacting all day long. Crazy. In the apt, we picked out a few streets that we wanted to go and knock that day by praying and looking at a map. We went to the streets previously chosen and started knocking. First house. Nothing. Second house, nothing. Third house, nothing. And so on and so on. We got to about the 9th or 10th house and finally someone answers. We ask if we can share a message with him. He says yes and we go inside! First time that's really happened... We've shared messages on the doorstep, but never gotten inside anyone's house while knocking doors. And on top of that, we learned a slightly different way of contacting that we were trying out. My comp had turned to me and said previously that I was taking this door. I agreed. The first door I took charge of with the new form of contacting we were let in! Pretty dang cool! We were able to teach the Restoration and he said that he wanted us to come back and teach his entire family, cause he enjoyed it and wants to learn more about it! Super cool!

We had a meeting with P today. It was a good lesson, but she still won't come to church! She's been reading though, but having a tough time understanding it. It was a super good lesson thought! We were able to teach her z lot about why the BoM is so important to her and what it means if it is true.

After the lesson, we had our weekly planning session. Basically, it's where we plan our goals for the upcoming week and make plans to accomplish those goals. Lots of fun stuff! 

We had a membership records committee tonight... Basically, we are helping the ward update their records which means that we have to go through and call everyone in the ward directory. It's a big task considering there are over 700 members in the area. And it's hard cause there are only about 150 active members. So we need to go through the area and find everyone that is still here and change those who have moved out. Those that we don't get an answer on the phone or the line has been disconnected, we have to make a home visit and see if we can get their information. But the home visits are phase two and we won't be starting that for a few weeks. And hey, I might be gone by then.

We had a super good district meeting this morning! They are always so uplifting and edifying! Think of how the Restoration of the Gospel has blessed your lives. Think about how different your life would be without it. Think of everything that you do have and understand because we have the restored Gospel on the Earth. Think of the Book of Mormon. Think of the priesthood. Think of eternal families. All of this comes because a 14 year old boy had a question. But not just that, he asked the question after he found out how to ask it. After he had studied it out and pondered about it. He asked with real intent, having a perfect and true desire to know how to proceed with his life. And because all of this happened, the Lord was able to restore His Gospel through this young boy who had so diligently pursued an answer to his question. Amazing, isn't it?

We went and did more service for Sister G. The shed rood that we helped move like my first week here? Well, yep. We are back to moving shed roofs. But only for fun, we pick them up and carry them,everywhere with the wind blowing super strong and all the while feeling like a sailboat;) I had my first taste of Persimmons though. It is a super sweet fruit that has the look of z tomato and the texture of a mango. Fun stuff!

We got up early this morning and went over to the church and had a district breakfast before conference. I made pancakes for everyone. And they are super good! I love pancakes;)

Conference is amazing! Holy cow, those men are inspired! Conference is like Christmas for missionaries. You just get presents left and right. And all the presents are spiritual and amazing. I hope y'all got as much out of today's sessions as I did. Elder Oaks talk was amazing and I think that's the one the hit me super hard. I'm not going to spoil it, so go read it again! 

Before priesthood session, the ward and the Spanish branch had a potluck dinner together. We had bbq brisket and bluebell ice cream and a lot of desserts. Super amazingly good stuff. I didn't get to sit in the usual spot on the stage like back home, but the session was amazing. And there was no ice cream after, which was kinda strange. I miss going with Dad and Matthew and Scott and Kaden. Made for a strange night to be there alone... 

Holy cow! Conference is still amazing! I got my mind blown like 8000 times! I've never paid this much attention to conference before. I wish that I had. I filled up 6 pages front and back with notes from all the sessions. Super good.

I ate another Carolina Reaper today. The Spanish branch had a luncheon between the sessions and everyone was doing it, so we joined in. It was a bigger piece than what I ate last time and it only made it worse. My extremities started going numb, that's when I decided that letting the snake bite you twice just to make sure it hurts is a bad idea. My eyes got a little bit bloodshot, I started coughing, and The rest of the day I thought I was going to throw up. It's a dang hot pepper. One of the Spanish branch people has a plant growing in his backyard, that's where we keep getting them. And Dad, I asked him if I could snitch a few to send home to you. I should get them sometime this weekend and they'll be in the mail next Monday. Try making some salsa with them... They'll wreck you for a while. The bigger the piece that you eat, the longer the burn lasts. And the chile doesn't bite just going in. It bites coming out too. 

-Elder Allen


Yep. That's what we ate this week. Pancakes.

-Elder Allen

Week 8 9/21/15-9/27/15

Pday! We were at the church most of the day playing soccer and basketball and emailing. Fun stuff. We had dinner tonight with our recent convert, R. Tonight they made poppyseed chicken for us and it was amazingly good! We had a good lesson with him as we taught the Restoration more in depth and applied it to his life as a recent convert. It was really cool!

Today we had a lesson with P. She's a super nice lady, but the lessons always end up being super long... We challenged her to be baptized, but she said no. She's the sweetest lady ever! We challenged her to come to church and she said that she wouldn't unless God specifically told her to come. That's about the extent of what happened today. That, and a lot of rejection. It seems like the more we knock, the more rejection comes. I think that it's like a law or something.

Sorry this weeks entries have been so short, we haven't had too much happen. A lot of doors are quickly shut after we introduce ourselves. We met someone tonight on the street next to the church. We were just leaving the church when we ran into this fellow outside. We started talking to him and we asked him if he'd ever been inside the church, which he answered not really. We asked him if he wanted to go inside the church and he said yes. So we walked with him to the church and gave him a church tour. We showed him everything from the organ in the chapel to the baptismal font. He thought it was awesome! Before we left, we all had a kneeling prayer in the relief society room and he felt something different. Then we found out he's YSA age. So we can't teach him, but what does it matter if he's getting baptized by us or the YSA missionaries? 

We had weekly planning this afternoon. After that, we went out knocking doors. Basically every door was a no show, with a few that really didn't want to see us...;) we walked up to some guy in his garage and he looked at us and said, I'm catholic. My comp and I kinda looked at each other, cause in the past, that hasn't meant very much... Anyway I walked into this guys garage to shake his hand and my jaw dropped. The entire garage was filled with model planes. Filled. Full. Wings and fuselages and big and small with radios. Stacked against the wall, hanging from the ceiling, come to find out, he had 5 more bigger ones in the trailer. We got to talking, religion aside cause he didn't want any of that and I'm a sucker for planes, and I found out that he's part of a club down here and he flies about 3 times a WEEK. The model port is not even a mile down the road. He had been working to fit a motor into a sailplane when we showed up. We talked for probably a half hour about everything. Dad, he said that the next big thing is pure gasoline engines, not nitro anymore. Or electric. And he also said that the big planes aren't worth the money, unless you can find one for under $350 or so that's been crashed. Then you can fix it up and fly it, or if it's beyond repair, strip it for parts. Ps. I got a picture. But it's on my camera, not my iPad and I have no way of getting it over yet. We are still trying to find a computer.

We knocked doors till late tonight. The last door we knocked was at about 8:30. We usually stop before 8:00, cause after that it just gets dark and people don't open the door after dark here in Beaumont. We knocked on this door at about 8:20 and it was an all glass door. This was one of the nicer houses in the area. Anyway, we knock and this lady comes walking by. We think she is coming to answer the door, right? Cause we had already knocked and everything. Remember, it's an all glass door. She comes walking by and so we wave to her. Apparently, she didn't hear the knock... We wave and she screams and runs away. We kinda stood there not knowing what to do for a second. So we knock again, cause ya know, we want to get this straightened out. we can see her huddled up in a corner in her kitchen on the phone... She wasn't coming out of her corner anytime soon. We don't know who she was on the phone with, but we guess that it was her husband or the police. So we said a few prayers and left a sticky note on the door with our phone number and an explanation of who we were and what we were doing. She hasn't called yet... And I don't know if she will ever accept the gospel in the future...

We tried going back to see her, but she wasn't home. But the sticky note was gone! We had a good district meeting today. All our appointments fell through today...again. Kinda sad, but it's ok. We were able to meet lots of nice people and introduce them to the Gospel. So it wasn't a bad day, just kind of slow. 

Today we had a few miracles occur. The first one happened as we rode by this street and felt impressed that we needed to go knock some of it. So that what we did. After a few houses, we knocked into this guy named J. J has a pretty cool conversion story and we spent an hour talking about beliefs. He believes pretty much everything about Mormonism. We were able to find some common ground and teach him a little bit more about Mormons. J will do anything for God and his servants, it's amazing! Anyway, next miracle. We were trying A again this week. This is the Pentecostal guy I told y'all about a few weeks back. We haven't been able to get in touch with him for a few weeks now. Anyway, we bike up to his house and as we are walking up to the door he comes outside and sees us and says that he's got food cooking and that we needed to come inside and eat. He had been making biscuits and gravy. So the biscuits and gravy finished and as they are finishing, he's telling us how the sausage in the gravy is homemade from a boar he and his dogs killed last week... Go figure. Kinda cool and it tasted amazing! Then he gave us some sausage to take home. Next miracle. We have an appointment set up with K. Her husband is a member and so are about half of her kids. She's been taught for a few years now and just won't commit. We have a lesson about the blessings that come from baptism. After we committed her to pray for a baptismal date and to pick one in the next few months. She knows it's true, she just won't commit. She's seen the change in her husband, kids, and the Spirit of the house. The lesson brought the Spirit so powerfully, it was amazing. It was one of the best lessons that we've taught as a companionship. So we will see what happens.

Got caught in a rainstorm. Again. Imagine that. It started raining when church started (9:00) and hasn't stopped yet (Monday morning, yes I'm typing this Monday morning cause we were too busy drying out last night) still raining. We went out at 5:00 last night to eat dinner with a family that invited us over for dinner. We were soaked by the time we got to their house. Then we went and gave K a blessing cause she hasn't been feeling to well and her husband asked us to come help and assist in a blessing. It was really cool to be a part of that. As I said, she knows it's true. And then we biked home, in the rain. Soaking wet. I have a video of me dumping water out of my shoes and wringing my socks out. Crazy stuff...

Earlier in the day, we were able to participate in a community event called "Pray for Beaumont" which is an event where everyone comes together and different preachers and pastors pray for Beaumont. It was strange. Eventually some of the missionaries got up and brought the Spirit, but it was strange to hear the rest of it. That's the first time I've actually seen black people preachers pray... I understand why Alma thought that the prayer of the Zoramites on the Rameumpton was so bad. There was just no spirit. It's amazing how the Spirit works, how one quiet prayer can invoke the Spirit only to have the next preacher destroy all peace amidst the chorus of hallelujahs and amens. It's sad, that these people want to have the Spirit, but don't know how to invite it. It was a strange experience. It was really strange. And there was no Spirit when others prayed. But soon as the missionaries started praying, the difference was night and day. I dont get how people can NOT notice it.

Ps. Thanks for the letters! Both via SnailMail and eMail!

-Elder Allen


Letters from Home

Elders Across Town

Week 7 9/14/15-9/20/15

Pday is like a national holiday. Not really but still... Transfers are today. Crazy, huh!? I've been out an entire transfer. It's a little bit wacko. It's gone by so dang fast. We had dinner tonight with R, our recent convert. He made us gumbo and it's the first time I've actually had gumbo. It's kinda strange and it's like nothing I've ever eaten before, but it's good! Actually it was really good.

Well we started out the day by knocking doors. Or that's what we had planned... On the way we were stopped by a preacher at a truck stop. (I didn't know they had those...) he started challenging our beliefs a little bit and after listening to him rant for about 15 minutes we asked him if he wanted a Book of Mormon. You should've seen the look on his face! He not so kindly told us no so we shared our testimonies and moved on, cause you know, we can't be wasting the Lords time on people like that...;) well we got to the area that we wanted to knock and started knocking. The first guy that answered was strongly anti, because he'd attended the Calvary Baptist church a few times. Apparently they show anti movies and stuff in their services. Who does that!? Anyway, he essentially told us to get lost and that he didn't want to stoop so low as to get into an argument over who was right and who was wrong... So we asked if he wanted a Book of Mormon and he "kindly" told us to leave. The next house was an older lady who came to the door and asked us what we wanted. We told her we were the missionaries and that started he on how she was Calvary Baptist and how she knew we weren't going to heaven cause we worshipped some guy who rewrote the Bible. We tried to correct her, but it didn't work so well. So we bore our testimonies and moved on, cause some people are just so stubborn that nothing you can say or do will bring the Spirit into their lives. It's sad really. Next house, guess what!? Calvary Baptist, aka Anti people who tell us we are too far gone to even try to save. And so it goes on for a few more houses. It was fun, love contention. And we offered a Book of Mormon to each person. We met some weird people today... Pentecostal who was convinced that speaking in tongues is not of the devil, pregnant lady who told us her life story, and then a guy who actually wanted a Book of Mormon! He is a super cool guy who was raised Pentecostal, but after he turned 18 started visiting all the churches he could. He knew that they're had to be more. So we had a good discussion about what "more" he was looking for. We are going to go back and teach him more!

Well today we didn't do much cause we had an appointment with a lady that taught us the entire plan of salvation... She talked a lot, but it was good! We were able to teach her a little bit about the restoration. Little bits here and there. It turned into a two and a half hour lesson. I invited her to be baptized and she kindly said no... But she's awesome and we are going to keep meeting with her and trying to get her into the fold. 

Tonight was a lot more anti... Heavenly Father is testing us. One house after another. This is the first real opposition that I've run into down here. 

Today we had weekly planning. Weekly planning in the first week of the transfer is where we try to come up with our transfer goals. We also make specific goals to get people to church. We filled out an entire whiteboard with people's names and what we can do to help them. We knocked a street today with a member named Ian, I think I may have mentioned him a few weeks ago. He's the one going to Hong Kong on his mission. Anyway, surprise surprise! More anti. More doors slammed. More people telling us to go away. It's super tough to face it. But what can you do? Work harder, move on to the next house and so on. And offer them the gospel each time. Smile at them. Tell them to have a nice day. Just be like Christ would be. Because He is our strength and our guide, and we are representatives sent to assist Him in this great work. 

We had zone meeting today! It was amazing! It was all about working with the ward and how we can better work with the Ward Council. I was able to learn so much and so was everybody else! So yep, bottom line, it was amazing!

We went out contacting (again, cause all our appts fell through, again) more opposition. We met a lot of people, but nobody was really interested. (Again.) That's about how the day went...

Sorry for not much detail on the last few days, but we haven't seen or done much other than gotten told to get off people's porches...

This morning started with a Ward Correlation Meeting (yet another of the never ending meeting circle of the life of a missionary) with our Ward Mission Leader. He's such a cool guy! I've told yall about him and how's he coached football for many years. 

After that, more contacting. Still nothing solid. It's gets old hearing the same thing over and over. You know, the whole I'm Baptist and that book can't be true. 

They don't know what truth is. I do. We do. And we have come to share it with them that reject us. All day. Day after day. 

The day ended after we had knocked for quite a few hours, and skipped dinner. We wanted to find somebody. Didn't matter who it was. We just wanted to find someone that would listen to us. We were kind of dejected. We had knocked from 1 till dark or so cause all the lessons we had lined up canceled. We didn't teach any doorstep lessons. Everybody just told us to get off their porch. Or they would listen for a while, we would talk to them and then they would say they weren't interested. Come about 8:00 we finally decided to head home for some dinner, cause obviously we weren't having any success knocking or talking to people. We should've given up round 4, but decided to stick with it. So we started to head home. We were biking through some back roads so we could ride side by side and talk about the day. We turn the corner and there were a few kids outside. We stopped and started talking to them. Gradually more and more kids came and started talking and asking questions about religion. We sat down on some guys driveway and had an hour long lesson/Q and A session with about 5 kids aged from 10-18. Come to find out, they all go to Calvary Baptist Church... But they were so cool and they wanted to learn. And we could answer their questions! The Spirit was definitely guiding our answers. It was a really cool experience and I'm grateful that we had it. The biggest obstacle in baptizing these kids will be the fact that their parents are anti. We will see what happens.

Church today was amazing! The talks were so good and the Spirit was super strong! I wish we could've had any investigator there. We invited so many different people and none of them came. We did everything that we could to get people to church, but none of them came. It was kind of sad

For lunch I made pancakes for a few of us elders. We had invited the Beaumont South Elders over for lunch and I fed them all pancakes. Seriously, we have pancakes like once a day. I'm getting super good at making them. Not to brag or anything...;) thanks mom! We really like pancakes. Instant mix is like our greatest friend ever. The whole "Just Add Water" thing really makes me excited! 

We had an awesome lesson tonight. It was probably the best lesson we've taught. We had never met the person that we were teaching and an hour later, she wanted to be baptized. Simple as that. But we might have to give her to the YSA Missionaries, cause she's about that age. We had a member there with us, Brother DeMoss and I'll tell you, members bring the spirit stronger than missionaries. Without fail every time. The members testimonies are more powerful and effective than our testimonies as full time missionaries. I don't know what it is, but I'd rather have members teach than have us teach, cause the Spirit that is brought is so great and powerful. All yall are missionaries. We are just the full time ones. Live your life in such a way as to be an example to others so as to invite discussion about religion. Recognize opportunities when they arise and take them. You never know what can happen.

-Elder Allen

Week 6 9/7/15-9/13/15

Week 6 9/7/15-9/13/15
Today was pday! We played soccer at the Cris Quinn soccer complex.
Look it up on satellite images. It's so big! It's massive. It's out in West Beaumont. After pday, we had dinner with our investigator. It was a really good bbq! First Texas bbq! Our investigator, R, is a manager at a local restaurant and he knows how to cook cause he's Cajun. We had chicken, crab, hamburger, beef, pork, you name it. It was so good! We are on exchanges now. It's Elder Dominguez and I. Two greenies. Brand new. We have somewhat of an idea of what we are doing.
But only somewhat. Haha we will see how tomorrow goes...

Woke up and ate a Carolina Reaper Pepper this morning for fun. I don't recommend it. But it was fun, so it's ok. The Hermanas made us. Note:
My tongue burned for the rest of the day...

I'm still with Elder Dominguez! We spent the day tracting and meeting people. We had a lesson with a Less Active this afternoon. He's in a living village for mentally handicapped people. Let me tell you, that was an interesting lesson. We finally just referred him to the Bishop.

We spent the rest of the day knocking doors. We met tons of people and taught quite a few lessons! Just Elder Dominguez and I. Two brand new missionaries! We started off the day super super nervous. We didn't know what we were going to do without our trainers. It's like having a whole chicken then taking its head away. The head does all the thinking and the body does all the work. Two heads don't go together and two headless chicken bodies don't have anything to think with or know how to act or what to say or anything like that... But it's amazing to see the Lord take over throughout the course of the day! We met one lady who wanted to know so much! It was a super cool experience to be on her doorstep answering questions. Just two Elders that have only been out for a month or so answering this lady's questions about what we know to be true. We sat on her doorstep for about 45 minutes teaching her about the Gospel. And everything just seemed to click with her. Too bad this isn't my area, so I won't get to teach her the rest of the lessons.

Just got a call from our trainers. They said that they're too tired to exchange back right now, so we will exchange back tomorrow. Still can't feel my tongue. You know how when hot chocolate burns your tongue? Well that's what it feels like... And then some.

We exchanged back this morning. It was a good exchange that I learned a lot from. Not too much happened today, just a lot of knocking doors when it was sunny and putting records into the iPad, cause it rained a lot today.

But we did meet with R again today! He's a super solid guy and has the qualities that I want to have as a father. Dad, he reminds me a lot of you. He will do anything for his family and I mean anything.
He just has this persona about him that makes you want to like and trust him.

On our way to the church, we were at a stoplight and a truck pulled up. The kid driving was about our age, maybe a little older. His mom, at least that's what I'm assuming, was sitting shotgun. He looks at us, digs in his pockets for a second and the window goes down. Now he's about three feet away from me. He leans out the window and hands me a $5 bill and says that dinner is on him tonight! Go figure. Nice people. I tried to deny it but he wouldn't let me and we were running out of time. So I kind of stammered a thank you and handed him a Family Proclamation and said something along the lines of I don't have any money for you but I do have salvation and eternal life and everlasting happiness and joy. He kind of looked at me funny which either means that that's what he needed to hear or it means he didn't exactly understand my rant... I think it was the latter. But he told us to keep doing "the Lords Evangelical Work" and keep being true Christians. It's good to see that someone recognizes us for who we are and what we stand for! It was a good reminder:)

R had his Baptismal interview today and we are still set to have a baptism this Saturday! He's sharing the Gospel with everyone already. He's invited so many people to his baptism. We got a text tonight saying that he invited the bus driver to his baptism... And he's coming. Go figure... My comp and I had a great laugh over that!
He told everyone at work that he is getting baptized on Saturday and that they are all invited, so we will see who shows up. He has a few friends that he wants to introduce us to already. I'll tell you what, the joy that come from bringing one soul unto Christ is immense. More than I've really ever experienced before. It's a different kind of joy that fills a gap in my Spirit. I never realized how long I've been waiting for this joy and happiness!

We had a cool experience today while knocking doors. We knocked this one house after prayerfully picking a street to knock. A nice lady came to the door, recognized us, and invited us in. She used to feed Elders and Sisters at Mcds in North Dakota... Come to find out, she and her husband had seen us 3 or 4 times in the last week on our bikes then all of the sudden, one night we show up on her doorstep.
Coincidence? I think not. She told us that she's been using our church's teaching materials to teach her Sunday school class at her church for years and absolutely loves it all. We showed her Gospel Library and what we can do with it. Well that intrigued her very much and after watching a Mormon Message, she asked when we could come back and teach her more about this stuff. Elder Leftwich and I kind of looked at each other and our jaws dropped. This kind of stuff just doesn't happen in Beaumont. So we set up a return appt with her and I'll let yall know how it goes!

We had district meeting this morning and it was awesome! Kind of the last one of the transfer... Kinda crazy. I've been out a whole transfer. We are supposed to get calls tonight or tomorrow to see who gets transferred or not. We were supposed to go on exchanges with the ZLs today, but it ended up not happening.

Oh! And we got a call telling us that someone needed a blessing in a hospital! This Sister is in the ICU and nobody has any idea why.
Nobody saw her at church or out and about in a while and her home teacher started wondering what was up. So he started calling her family to see what's up and her entire family is not supportive of the church and women's tell him anything... They aren't supportive of her either, so they really had no idea what's happened to her. Well her home teacher finally found her son, and he is the only one that's even remotely supportive of the church and her, and the home teacher found out she was in the ICU. We don't know why. Anyway, this is where we come in. We get a call saying that she needs a blessing so we have the opportunity to go and give her a blessing. Fast forward a little while to account for travel time, and we arrive at the hospital. We get up to the ICU and her home teacher is in the waiting room. Let's get one thing straight, I don't like the hospital. Or at least not the ICU, cause everyone is bandaged up and there's the annoying heart monitor and you can feel everyone's life draining out of them. Yep, don't like that place. We finally find the room that got her inside of it. And she's laying on a bed fidgeting around all over the bed and she's completely out of it. Kinda creepy... Anyway, we decide who's giving the blessing and I'm the one that ended up giving to her. Immediately after I closed, she stopped fidgeting and moving and went completely calm. The priesthood is a real power and it is the Authority to act in the manner that Jesus Christ Himself would act if He were there and our experience today was an absolute manifestation that it is indeed a real power.

Well still no transfer calls, but we have R's baptism today! Super excited. We spent the morning getting everything together for that and making sure everything was taken care of. We put together a program and then headed over to the church to copy it and fill the font. It took us a while to find the controls to the water of the font, but overall, it went off without a hitch! R showed up and he was practically glowing cause he was so happy! You could tell that there was something special about him today.

The baptismal program was fantastic! The entire program was just absolutely spectacular! My comp and I had the opportunity to be the witnesses for the baptism and when he came up out of the water, he was so happy! I understand what the scriptures say when our joy will be full when we bring one soul unto Christ. I can't stop smiling about it as I'm typing this! I haven't felt this happy in a long time! It makes me want to keep working and bringing people to Christ.

We went out tonight and started contacting people. We met quite a few people, taught a lesson or two, but nothing to solid came of it other than one lady who says she will be at church tomorrow or the next week to check it out, which is good. Maybe we will end up teaching her.

Got a call, my comps most recent convert in his last area was found dead in an overturned car. I was there to witness the baptism in my first few weeks out and it kinda put a damper on things. But the thing is, him being taken off the Earth doesn't feel wrong. Neither my comp nor myself feel that he was taken before his time. He actually told the other missionaries that he didn't think he would be on the Earth much longer. Go figure. But he's now teaching in the Spirit world, which is a good thing, cause he has such an amazing testimony! I only met him for a little while, but he was a super cool guy!

Oh, and I got my first letter!!! Thanks Josh!!! I love getting letters and have only gotten one... Hint hint;)

We watched a spider spin it's web outside our window. It was intricate and beautiful. There is beauty all around, just look for it!

We were able to confirm R today and my comp and I were asked to stand in the circle and it has been one of the sweetest experiences of my life. After sacrament, we were asked to stand in the circle as he was ordained to the office of a priest. Another super sweet experience! It has been a truly wonderful day so far and a special one

We found another new investigator tonight. We met him on the street and his name is M. He is about dads age and has been doing martial arts since he was 16... He's about as tall as dad too. But has more muscle than dad...;)

One transfer is over... Kinda crazy that I've been out 6 weeks. Sheesh.

-Elder Allen