Monday, October 13, 2014

Letter 64

Hey! :D

 Things have been good!!  Loughborough is the place to be.  Leicester Zone is the best.  So last p-day we really just hung out with the Elders all day.  Elder Haynie is Elder Hunter's new companion and they're just really fun to hang out with.  After p-day we went and taught Alex and Ariel.  I really love spending time with them. and it was a pretty solid lesson.

Tuesday we had Mission Leadership Council MLC.  That's always one of the best parts of the month.  It's definitely one of my favourite things about being in leadership.  So we got a lift with the Nottingham Elders (Elder Matheus and Elder Debeikes).  We got to MLC and had an interview with President, then had the meeting.  It was really great to see everyone again, like Elder Harris as an AP, and Elder Steel, and some people from my MTC group.  President gave a training about genuinely speaking from the heart, and building relationships with people.  I felt like it'll be something I'll use for the rest of my life so that's really cool.  After MLC we spent quite a bit of time preparing for our zone meeting the next day.  One cool thing that President said was 'You KNOW that the Lord is in the details of your life because you have had experiences where you needed help, and he has helped you.'  It was really true when we thought about it.  It's so obvious the work that he does with us. 

Wednesday we had zone meeting in the morning so we caught the train out there.  We did a lot of training in zone meeting about what President had talked to us about. I felt like the meeting went well and it was fun to do.  After zone meeting we had to stay in Leicester all day because we had a meeting with the Stake President.  We hung out with Elder Nogueroles and Smith all that day.  Then the meeting with President Smith was really good.  He's such a great Stake President and is really involved in missionary work so that is a really great meeting to have.  So something really cool happened this night.  So we were pretty stressed because our flat was a tip, we forgot our phone at the flat and we had meetings all day, and flat inspection the next morning and we knew we wouldn't be in till late.  So mid day we asked the Elders to go and get our phone and just monitor it for a while until we could get it back just in case someone in the zone needed to get in touch with us while we were in Leicester.  So that night we went and met with the Elders at the train station at about 9 o'clock and got the phone and keys and headed to our flat ready to spend the whole night cleaning.  I opened the door and the whole flat was spotless.  Everything was very cleaned and organized.  The Elders had spent so much of their day cleaning because they knew we were having a busy and stressful day.  I was so thankful for that. They're awesome.

Thursday we had our flat inspection then headed out to hit the streets.  Talked to a few solid people then we had the Beasley's for a DA that night and had such good Spaghetti Bolognese.  Right after that we had ward coordination which was good as always. 
 Next day I went on exchange with Elder Bies and had a good time with him.  We did some finding, I ate a kebab. Then I conducted a baptismal interview for Aiden, the other Elder's investigator.  That went well. We then we taught a chinese girl named Monica for the first time.  She's way cool!  She gave me a new Chinese name.  It is pronounce Pwah-guh shong.  It means 'poguey-bear' ahaha.  Then we taught Alex and Ariel and had a good time.  

Saturday morning we woke up and went to play football on the Uni.  We had a good time playing for a couple of hours then it came time to exchange back before Aiden got baptised.     We got on the train and got to Leicester but as Elder Harris and I were exchanging back all the trains got cancelled because somebody trespassed!  We ended up missing Aiden's baptism.  We got there about 45 minutes after it started and congratulated him and then prepared for the 'after-party.'  Which was really just a huge fireside at some really awesome members house called the Leslie's.  We went over to the Leslie's and all hung out, had some food, and then Elder Harris and I had a spiritual thought, then we played conkers.  It was one of the greatest things of my mission really.  We just all had such a good time running around with the kids, talking to all the investigators, dancing around, singing, taking pictures, and playing games.  It went really well.  We were really buzzing for missionary work after that.  We talked to a guy named Steven on the way home who seems elect. 

Sunday was a pretty busy day.  We got up and headed to church which was really good.  We were kind of concerned that Alex and Ariel hadn't shown up but then they got there just at the end of sacrament meeting because their car ran out of petrol.  Right towards the end of church Michael B. showed up and started ranting and venting to us about how his mate is being maltreated.  He was really causing a massive scene at church.  One kid even came up to talk to us and he waved his arms in the air and yelled at him to back off because he was having a private conversation, then a little while later another kid comes up and Michael yelled, 'f***in hell!' and walked away.  All in the foyer! It was crazy.  We calmed him down quite a bit and then went to teach Anthony.  That lesson went well, we are working with him to keep praying and reading.  Right after Anthony we went to take a practice theory test for Elder Harris and I made some hot chocolate.  Isn't it crazy that it's already very cold outside these days?  Cold and wet!  We then went to teach that Steven guy.  Steven was really cool!  We taught him about the godhead and about prayer then we all said individual prayers together.  At the end Steven said 'I feel like I can fly, I really just feel fantastic!'  It was a really cool experience.   After that we headed over to the Elders flat so I could do call ins with all of the teams while Elder Harris and Haynie taught a guy named Michael that we have.  We started a nice fire in their fire place, drank hot chocolate and played the guitar for a while after.  It was a really cool night.

I'm excited for this next week, it should be really good!  Hopefully we'll see quite a bit of miracles.  I'm really glad to hear that all of you are doing well, and that everyone is safe and happy and healthy.  

PS: I did love conference, especially David Bednar, Jeffery Holland, and especially Lynn G Robbins, His was the most relate-able to me at this time.  I also like President Uchtdorf's Is it I? talk.  

For a Christmas package... is it almost Christmas already?!  Uhm, I really can't think of anything I NEED, or even things that I'd even want... I'll have to think about that more.

Uhm and yes YOU should definitely call the mission home very soon.  Very soon.  Just in case they're already looking for tickets and things like that.  You'll probably talk to a guy named Elder Gray who's such a legend.  It'll be funny to hear if you understand him really easily or not.  But yes, call the office.   

Can you believe I've been out for 14 months?  Can you believe I go home in less than 9?  I really wonder how much I've changed and things like that.  I think I'm definitely more assertive than I've ever been in the past.  We'll just have to wait and see what you think.  Time is flying though, before I know it, I'll be on an aeroplane, and frankly, that though really scares me.  It's going fast!

I hope you all have a great week! :D
Elder Pogue

Letter 63

Hey!  It's so crazy that you are just chilling in Sri Lanka right now!  I can't believe all those pictures of snakes and lizards and boars!  Sure you're freaking out all the time about there being so many snakes?  Sri Lanka looks like a really cool country though!  So this week has been pretty good.  I really feel like not too much has happened that would be interesting to say but I'll try to remember stuff.  (just a side note, the guy on the computer ahead of me is updating some type of profile and creating a forum that is titled 'The Banisher of Demons is looking for some female fun'.. and his profile says that he used to be a competitive swimmer, and kickboxer... and there is no way  that's true.  I can't believe what some people use library computers for! Poor guy... I feel bad for him. haha)

Last Monday we just did normal stuff for p-day.  Then that night we taught Felicity a lesson and the lesson was okay, but we found out that she'll be traveling for the next month and a half then when she gets home she'll basically be heading right back to china.  We had a dinner appointment with the Kears that night which is always good though (:

Tuesday morning we got a call telling us that we would have interviews with President Rasmussen on Thursday so we had to order subways and do all types of things to get ready for that so we spent a little bit of time working with that.  Most of the days this week has been spent trying to find new investigators.  On Tuesday we also taught some lessons, we taught our Nigerian investigator named Michael and our investigator Anthony. We felt like the lessons could be going better, but we'll see what happens.  We were called earlier that morning and a member wanted us to do some service for her friend.  We ended up doing that for a couple of hours then teaching her children to pray.

Wednesday the same lady wanted us to do some of the same service work again so we went over there and did that for a few hours.  That was alright then we did some finding afterwards.  I really don't remember what we did for the rest of Wednesday.  

Thursday we had our interviews all day.  We had to wake up early and get the train to Leicester and then just hung out at the chapel there all day.  My interview with President was really good, it was about 30 minutes of him telling me that I am the presiding priesthood authority for the missionaries in the Leicester Zone and he told me some of the things I need to make sure I'm doing.  It was a good interview.  That all went smoothly, then after interviews we had a DA with the Mattson's then we had our ward coordination meeting.  Somehow miraculously though we got 4 potentials that day even.  I think we talked to 6 people and 4 of them told us that they'd like to learn more.

Friday we had our weekly planning at the chapel and planned a lot about what we would do with the zone this transfer. We did a day of finding and taught a few lessons. 

Saturday was good, we were on exchange and played football in the morning. Then we went and taught Anthony again.  It was cold and rainy though unfortunately.  Then after that we went finding.  We watched conference that night which was really good.  Alex and Ariel came.  After conference we went to eat at the Cheng Do restaurant.  It was so funny, I pulled something out of the soup, looked at it and put it back.  Then I saw Alex eating it and I asked what it was, he said something in Chinese then translated it on his phone.  It was intestines!  

Sunday we spent the whole day at the chapel watching conference which was good as always.

I'm so sorry but you won't be getting any pictures today!  I only have 4 minutes left!  

I hope you had a good week and make it safely back from Sri Lanka!  Love you!
-Elder Pogue 

62nd Letter From England

Hey Everyone!  I've had a pretty interesting and great week! 

So I'll just go ahead and start with last p-day.  Last p-day we went to some abbey or something and just looked around with the district.  It was well fun, we took some funny videos and just had a good time hanging out together.  It was a nice place and we also ate kebabs.  We then had a dinner appointment with a family called the Leslie's.  They're one of my favorite families here so I enjoyed that. They have tons of chickens running around the back garden and has a room devoted to star wars toys.  After the Leslie's we went and saw our investigator Melanie.  It was a powerful lesson, I really just feel so much charity for her because every time we meet she expresses how much she desires to do what's right but because of her addiction she just can't, every time she tries, she fails.  Hopefully we'll help her. 

Tuesday morning I got to go on exchange with Elder Kerr and we had a great time.  I went down to Demontfort in Leicester and we just worked really hard.  We taught a really hippie girl named Ellie, that was cool.  Then met with some other people and did some good finding.  I found this keyboard music thing in their flat that we played with all night and had tons of fun.  It was a great exchange.  We exchanged back pretty early and came to our district meeting.  Elder Harris and Elder Bies talked to a girl named Felicity from China.  It was a good talk, and she said she'd meet us again but then that night they got a call from Ivy in China!  Ivy said that Felicity had messaged her and said that she met two Americans who will teach her how to pray.  Ivy said no way?  What are their names?  Felicity told Ivy then Ivy said, I'm a member of that church and you should listen to them.  The crazy part was that Ivy wasn't even great friends with her or anything, Felicity just had some prompting to tell Ivy in China about it.  It was great!

Wednesday we had a district meeting in the morning which was good.  Right after district meeting we went down to Leicester again to do a workover with the Westcotes Elders.  I went with Elder Pacler for only about an hour.  We didn't really have much success but it was fun.  We got back pretty late and saw Melanie again that night. 

Thursday morning we went over to Leicester again for a a district meeting and had a great district meeting.  I think my favorite part about being zone leader is just really knowing all the missionaries in the zone.  After that meeting though we had to drive to Peterborough for exchange.  I went with Elder Page.  He's such a great guy!  I loved it.  Elder Page actually when he was a freshman in high school was pitching 90 miles per hour and doing it amazingly accurately and had scouts coming to his baseball games, but then he developed tendinitis in his elbow and can't play anymore.  We had a great time and just did a lot of finding.  We met this hilariously prideful old man that kept saying how perfect he was and showing us all of his achievements, then we were walking down the street and some chavs started yelling at us and one of them threw a lighter at us... Chavs are hilarious.  I got to hear the best street musician I've ever heard though so that was great!  

Friday we exchanged back and went to see Alex for a little bit but then we exchanged again!  Elder Hunter has been sick so I went to stay with him so Elder McCray went with Elder Harris.  I was happy to have a little rest.  I just played guitar most of the time while he slept.  I got a text on Friday night though saying that Angie has been baptized!  I was so excited!  Elder Olivos baptized her in Cheltnum chapel.  I wish I could have gone but the mission rules are you can go if you're a one hour trip or less away.  I'm so happy she made it though!  

Saturday I was still with Elder Hunter and I called Angie in the morning and talked to her for a while.  It was great to hear from her and it sounds like her baptism went really well!  She was very very excited! Elder Harris and I went to teach Felicity and the lesson was amazing!  She is really excited for the gospel and is already feeling the spirit and even told us something about prayer that I didn't know until my mission!  About accounting during our prayers.  So that was great.  

Sunday was a great and relaxing day.  We had church and Felicity came, she loved it and even said she felt very proud to be there.  She said 'I want to join this church!'  It's such a miracle!  We had the primary program so that was great.  After church a lot of members from Melton Mowbury fed us at the church so that was really fun and then we stopped to say hey to Bob on the way home.  We then went to see Jill and Alex and headed home for our call ins.  

Something really funny happened this morning.... so I was telling Elder Harris about a little kid in the ward running around with a rubbish bin above his head saying put him in the garbage.  I was telling him this story and said, he was running around with a.. aaa... a... What is it called in America!?  Rubbish bin was all I could think of.  But Elder Harris had to think and after maybe 45 seconds he yelled trash can!  It was ridiculous that we genuinely could not remember the word trash can! 

Well, that was my week.  I hope you have had a great week!  Love y'all
-Elder Pogue