Monday, June 25, 2012

25 June 2012

Aloha!

Boy is it me or is it hot here in Maine? It's definitely not like the Arizona heat but it gets muggy and humid with almost no wind. So that makes it fun to go tracting in pants and a collared shirt. Nevertheless (yes I transition like Nephi, so what?) it has been an awesome week!

We did a bunch of finding since our investigators were being stubborn and we found some sweet new people to teach. One is the son of a less-active woman who is married to a non-member. They used to have the missionaries over a lot and were warming up to them until one missionary with a bad attitude came in and offended them. Since then they didn't talk to the missionaries much. So we went over and introduced ourselves and started building the bridges again and now we have a baptismal date set for their son! It's great awesome! His name is Christian and he's super funny. Our first lesson with him was a mix between talking about Zelda, Chuck Norris, and priesthood blessings. He was feeling sick and asked for a blessing so we gave him one and it was awesome! What better way is there to get a new investigator than to give a blessing? He also came to church this past week and brought his two friends that we are now teaching. He also has a sister who is 9.5 who wants to be baptized too. BUT, with all of this happening we have to be careful and make sure that they are getting baptized for the right reasons. But it is still an awesome miracle!


So last week we hit up a thrift store after doing emails and I found a typewriter for $2! I snagged it as quickly as I could and I just wrote my first letter on it! I love old fashioned junk! It makes me want to get a VW bus even more!

This week I also got to go on an exchange with Elder Garner up here in Skowhegan, it was super fun even though we didn't have much success. It was crazy to think that 5 or 6 years ago we were at EFY together trying to strengthen our testimonies and now we are together again sharing them as missionaries. I don't think it was a coincidence at all that we were placed so close to each other. It made me think about what it would be like to go teaching with any of my other friends that are serving right now as missionaries and how awesome that would be! We would probably baptize a whole city like Alma and Amulek!


This week our ward went on a trip to Boston to go to the temple. It was mainly for the youth and from what people say it went great. It was the first time for Wendy to go to the temple which is awesome! She loved going is looking forward to the next one. The youth here are stellar! Speaking of which, the people here in Maine have the greatest accents! A true Mainer will end a word with an R if it ends with a vowel. And if it ends with a R they will take it off and put an A. Example: Mainer=Mainah Appraiser=Appraisah Arizona=Arizoner Utah=Utahr Awesome right! I don't have the accent yet, I guess I'm not cool enough for it.

So the crazy Mainer story this week: In Waterville this week there was a burst of rain which created a giant flood. In Arizona people would be freaking out but here in Maine we have nerves of steel. Instead of freaking out people acted like there wasn't any water. When they would get to a flooded part on the road (and we are talking water that is around 4 feet deep) they would speed up and try to drive/float through it! Some cars were almost completely submersed in the water! One guy had a brilliant idea and grabbed his kayak and started getting around with that. We didn't have anything like that here in Skowhegan but I guess the flood was all over facebook and junk. It sounds like facebook is taking over the world, is it true?

Now the cool story: Yesterday in Sacrament meeting I passed the Sacrament to a disabled woman in a scooter. As I offered her the bread she tried to grab it with her right hand but because of her disability her right hand was almost motionless. However, her left hand was perfectly fine so she used her left hand to grab her right wrist and moved her hand so that she could grab the bread with her right hand. I was touched to see the level of respect that she had for the Sacrament by the effort she gave to ensure that she partook of it with her right hand. She could have easily used her left but there is something about using your right hand that makes it more significant. I'm not sure what it is but I know it mattered to her and it mattered to me. Later in the meeting a man gave a talk from Elder Hallstom's talk last conference about being converted to the gospel through the church. In it he talked about how we must be converted to the gospel and it's principles so that when God gives us greater understanding of his Gospel we understand the need for a change in church policies. He related the change in policy in 1978(?) that allowed all worthy male members to hold the priesthood. He talked about how that change in policy put many people off because they weren't converted to the gospel but rather to the church alone. If they had been converted to the gospel then they would have understood the change that was made and would have gladly accepted it. Just some awesome experiences I had in Sacrament! The only boring Sacrament meetings are the ones that you pay less attention during.

Well I love you all and wish you a happy birthday!

From Maine with Love,
Elder Resendez (Or Elder R as people have started to call me)

P.S. Read the last chapter of 2 Nephi where Nephi says that he will stand face to face with you at the bar of judgment. How cool will that be for those who accept his words? It will be like meeting a long lost friend or brother. I can't wait!
















Monday, June 18, 2012

18 June 2012

Aloha!

Um...hello! Well the last two weeks were pretty crazy but thankfully today I have plenty of time to write letters. It's nice to get a break from the fans.

This week was transfers and I got my new companion. His name is Elder Wright from Howell, Utah. So ya, ANOTHER Utahn. That's about 4 in a row now, you just can't get away from them! He's a great guy and he can play hymns on the harmonica like a champ! I was disappointed that Elder Jardine had to leave cuz he was super chill but I hope that the people here will love me when I leave as much as they loved him. So after being here in Skowhegan for 3 weeks I got to area train (WOOHOO!!) which means that I'm supposed to know how to get around the area. So it's been a rough week but next week will be better.

So this week we had an interesting surprise. We got a call from President Wilkey and he told us that Craig Haywood was baptized back in 1996! He has been a member longer than we have but he didn't know because he blocked out his entire childhood. He said that he thought he had been baptized but couldn't remember the church. Turns out it was us. Kinda cool how everything in his life led him to being active in the church again. Now he is hoping that because he has been a member the whole time that he can go to the temple sooner to be sealed. That's a pretty sweet desire if I've ever seen one!

Craig and his family are doing so great. This week we had dinner with them and they made their famous "Lava Spaghetti" that has 16 habanero peppers in it. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, the store had no habanero peppers so they made it with only jalapenos. It was pretty good but I wish it had the full kick so I could say I lived through it.

As for Wendy (the other baptism) she is doing great! She comes every week with the Bloom family and is as strong as ever. The youth of this ward are so strong and amazing! There aren't many of them but they aren't afraid of inviting their friends to church and already there have been two baptisms from their friends in the last two years.

So for the funny story of the week! Last night we went street contacting in Skowvegas around 7 pm. We passed a bar and this lady stumbles out of it and asks us if we can dance with her. We tell her that we can't but before we can explain ourselves or say anything else she bursts off into a rant about how nobody in the bar will dance with her and how we are now rejecting her too. Oh, and she's super hammered. I don't drink but isn't 7 a little early to be hammered? Anyways...well for the next 20 minutes she sat out there talking to us about her life problems and other things but whenever we tried to give her an answer she would start dancing and ask why we can't dance. So we gave her a card so she can call us later and tried to get on our way. But she wasn't having any of that and started to ask us who we were. Not what our religion is but who we are. Funny thing is that we are who we are because of our religion. So we told her we were disciples of Christ, she didn't like that answer very much and kept trying to pry different answers from us. During this whole thing she would get within a foot away from whoever she was talking to so I tried to say as little as possible to keep her from talking to me. So she would get super close to Elder Wright and he would take a step away but then she would get even closer. It was so funny to watch because by the time it was over he had moved about 10 feet. We finally got her to let us go after she got all in my face and told me to come back later and have a drink to see who I really am. I'll admit that I lied and said that we would be back only so she would let us go. I also had to lie quickly because I was convinced that she was going to kiss me or something. So finally, after an agonizingly (and hilariously) long discussion we got out of there and headed home. Hopefully she will call us later so we can teach her how to find true happiness in life. It was sad to see how Satan gets ahold of people's lives but all we can do is work our hardest to help them see the truth.

Also, I don't know if I have talked about the Powers family but they're the greatest! They are super goofy and funny and are great athletes. Their son Christian comes out with us all the time. He's a stud and used to be the best running back in the state of Maine. Bro Powers is super funny too and he quotes Will Ferrell movies all the time. So don't worry Mom they are taking good care of me!

I'm loving it out here and I'm doing my best to make the most of every moment because they are gone before you know it! I love you all and I'm proud of my friends that are on missions right now! It's amazing to see how great my group of friends is because I have yet to meet someone with a similar group. I love you all!

Stay classy,

Elder Resendez



Elder Resendez with an Elvis Impersonator
Elder Resendez and Tommy

Monday, June 4, 2012

6 Months!!!

ALOHA!

Can you believe that it's been six months since I left home? I feel like I have been a missionary forever but I still remember a lot of things from back home like it was last week. It's going to be weird to come home after being out of the loop for two years. It's weird to think that a quarter of my mission is already done and behind me. Serving almost all of it in one area really made it feel like such a short time.

But now I'm in Skowvegas lighting it up! We just had ANOTHER baptism this week! Back to back baptisms! That's seriously unheard of in New England but it goes to show that anything is possible. I want to point out that these past two baptisms have been almost 100% because of members and not missionaries.

Craig (last week) was found because he married a less-active member who wanted him to be taught. And Wendy (this week) was brought to church by her friends (they're all about 15 years old). How well an area goes is rarely due to how good the missionaries there are but rather how active the ward is in teaching their friends and family members. Once someone is introduced to the church and has support from the ward (and sees that we aren't a crazy cult because their friend isn't a crazy cultist) then they are totally set up to be baptized!

So basically without beating any more around the bush, PLEASE INTRODUCE YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY TO THE RESTORED GOSPEL!

It's pretty simple, all you do is invite them to a church event, give them a copy of the Book of Mormon, or refer the missionaries to them. There's a million ways that you can share the gospel and any of them will feel natural as long as you act natural. I have found that too many members are afraid to refer their friends to us, or to talk to them about religion, or to even tell their friends that they are a member. One of the biggest eternal truths I have learned is that if you never try, you never will. If you never try to get them to church, they more than likely never will go. If you don't give them a copy of the Book of Mormon, they won't be able to read it. So please just try! President John Taylor even taught that our duty is to share the gospel and that it is what the Lord expects of us.

So I have a lot to report on but it will have to wait until next week but I did get to spend 3 days with Elder Garner! That was pretty sweet but I don't have time now so I will tell it later. I love you all and wish you the best!

Love,
Elder Resendez



Elder Resendez' wooden tie

Elder Resendez and Manuel

The Elders and Manuel

The Elders and Ralph






Saturday, June 2, 2012

Hi, I'm Ty, and I'm a Mormon.

Here is a link to Elder Resendez' personal testimony: Click Here!