Monday, August 30, 2010

Starke, FL Letter #4 August 30, 2010

Hello out there to everyone reading this letter!
Hey, how are you? I am great, hope you are too! Well this week I conducted my first District meeting! President Barry was there, with his wife Sister Barry and their daughter (who just returned home from her mission in Nauvoo). So yeah pretty crazy first meeting. Sorta made the Elder in charge (yours truly) just a wee bit nervous. President Barry is a good president, he loves what he does and that makes for a great experience each time you’re around him.

First thing I did at the meeting was I had our district set a goal for this transfer period for number of baptisms and number of re-activations. Next, we talked about what we could do differently for this transfer than we had done in the past to reach our new goals (that we had just set). Then I asked them to follow me into the gym (we were at the ward building). I had before the meeting - set up a maze (of chairs). The maze represented our goal that we had just set together in the other room. At this point, I asked them each to put on a blindfold. I asked them to try to maneuver through the maze and arrive safely at the exit (on the other side of the room). I gave them all two strikes and on the third one, they were “out”.

As I had assumed, they all failed. So then, I reminded them by asking “What is it that we should do first? “ They all answered “Pray.” Therefore, I had them pray and ask God to help us with our goals. I then took my companion Elder Bass through the maze blindfolded as I guided him (by my voice). He made it successfully and easily to the end of the maze; he reached his goal. Following that then we went back in and finished District meeting. I thought it was a fun first district meeting. I tried hard to make it different, fun, but teach them something they could use as well. However now this week, I have the AP’s coming to my district meeting... so maybe I failed at my first district meeting. Ha-ha!

With our current investigators, we are continually working with them helping them to get closer to being baptized. We also helped a member here in Starke move to Ocala, (my old stomping grounds) Elder Bass and I went to help him unpack and then get settled in his new place. Since I was in Ocala, I was able to stop by my old apartment (pick up my mail) and see Elder Day!! Seeing him was a big highlight of my week. Elder Day’s new companion is Elder Fazon. We talked for a while and then unfortunately I had to go. On another note, I have special permission to head back down to Ocala this weekend for a wedding and a baptism. Guess who? Yep Michael and Kaitlin! I can’t wait to be able to be there with them for their big day!! I am pretty excited about that! I love those guys!

Another fun thing that Elder Bass and I did; was on Sunday we got to go to a priesthood meeting for our Stake area, which was being held in Lake City! I was able to see members from my old Lake City ward! I was even lucky enough to be able to visit with Brother MacRae again. He was our ward mission leader in our ward in Lake City, (he was the one who Elder Taft & I gave the little toy car to for Christmas) Super cool guy!! That was super fun, I loved it!!

I have printed all of my pictures off now, so I will be sending home 2 cd’s full of pictures this week for everyone. Some pretty funny stuff in those pictures! I really love this area. Lots of red neck boys and southern hospitality which I love. The members here feed us usually good ole southern food, and for our p-day, we really don't do anything too different because we are located in such a small town. There is nothing much to do overall, but I still really enjoy it. For Labor Day (p-day next week), some of the local ward members are wanting us to go to a Flea Market that they know of. They say that to "really" fit in over here we need to be sporting a huge belt buckle and they want us to get one at the Flea Market. You know the ones that look like they weigh 10lbs each? LOL We’ll see. Therefore, Elder Bass and I may do that next week.

I sure love hearing from everyone and appreciate all of the support I get while serving the Lord! Please be sure to thank everyone for keeping in touch and writing all the time. I wish I had time to answer everyone, but my days are packed from the minute my feet hit the floor until I fall into bed each night. Tell them I really love everything though and am grateful to hear how everyone is back home. I really gotta get going now.

Love to everyone!
Love from Elder (pondering the fact he may just be turning into an actual red neck?) Blair