Tuesday, July 5, 2016

A Bit About Green Valley

I'm going to start trying to take some pictures of the area so you guys
can see how posh it is here.

Happy Independence Day!  Not quite sure of any 4th plans yet! We have dinner with one of our ward mission leaders, so I'd be willing to guess there might be some BBQ, :). If nothing else, we'll probably be able to see the fireworks over The Strip from where we're at. 

I spent a lot of time replying to individual emails today, so I don't have much time to write a big letter, but I'll do my best! I thought, for this week, I would try to tell you more about the people and area where I'm serving! 

Our car's thermometer last week. Granted
it had been in the sun for a while.  After
we drove for a while and it had some time to
cool down, it only read 118.
Let's start with Elder Leakehe: although you may not guess this just from looking at him, Elder Leakehe is probably one of the best beatboxers I've ever met! He loves to beatbox, and pretty much any word you say, he can probably think of a rap song that goes along with it. He can be really shy and quiet when he first meets people, but he's really energetic and full of life. He's a ton of fun to be around, and we love joking with each other about things. He's also really insightful. Some people think that just because he doesn't say much in district councils and zone conferences he doesn't have much to say, but he has some of the best insights into the scriptures I've ever heard. He's sort of like this really deliberate thinking wise Tongan chief, haha.

Next one of our investigators: Malik. He's 17, and we met him on my first day here. By the end of that first week, he had a baptismal date! He's awesome, and so prepared to hear the gospel! We've been having a hard time getting hold of him this week though, so hopefully all is still going well.

The Breakfast Cake I made this morning.
Excell family recipe!
We also have another pair of investigators that we set with a date recently. Their names are Nadiya and Jennifer. A mother and daughter. Nadiya is the younger of the two, and her husband was a less active member. Missionaries have been working with them for a long time. When we invited Nadiya to be baptized, we read 2 Nephi 31 with them, and it really touched her. She said that she had been thinking about being baptized a lot lately, and was just waiting for a sign. She felt like the scriptures we shared with her were the sign she was waiting for! And then when we set her with the date that we had prayed about, she got really emotional. We set her date for July 23, which apparently is a very significant day for her, because it is the day her baby was born. And her baby is a little bit of a miracle because of some health challenges she had. We had no idea, but Heavenly Father knew that it would be meaningful for her. Nadiya's mom Jennifer is a devout Catholic, and is a little more on the fence than Nadiya is just because it will be so hard for her to change, but she said that she's willing to work towards that day as well. We really hope she can receive an answer!

That's about all I have time for this week. As always, thanks so much for your continued love and support! I love you all!

Elder Excell
Dakota and Rebecca's baptism.  They're a family we were teaching in Dolan Springs
that got baptized the Friday after I left.  Awesome family!!

Q&A -- 7/4/2016 
1.)  What was the best part of your week?  -- Elder Aitchison and his new companion came up to stay the night! All of the new missionaries always go to the temple in their first transfer together with President Snow along with their companions. Since Elder Aitchison and Elder Alfred live so far away, and the session is usually really early, they got permission to come up the night before. It was really good to catch up on what's been going on since I left.

2.)  What are you most looking forward to in the week ahead?  -- There's going to be an expanded MLC (mission leadership conference) this week! Normally MLC is just ZL's and STL's, but every once in a while the district leaders get to go as well, like this week!

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