Monday, August 29, 2016

The Work is Moving Forward Like a Flash Flood

Hey everybody!

I'll start off this letter by talking about the craziness that happened Monday night last week. After P-day was over, and we went back out to proselyte, we got a ton of rain! There was a pretty major flash flood that happened in North Las Vegas as a result of it! It was definitely an adventure! I'll try to send some videos. Elder Branning and I had an interesting time trying to make sure that the rest of the zone was all safe.
Flash flood in North Las Vegas
Our gate was broken after the storm.  It literally got bent open by the water flow.
We had a couple of big breakthroughs this week with some of our investigators! One of them, I've already told you about in the Q&A section. The part member family that we are working with is named the Eddie and Melinda. In addition to them coming to church for the first time in over three decades, we had another exciting thing happen with them this week! We've been having a hard time meeting with Melinda lately, because she's been sick. But we've still been meeting with Eddie pretty consistently. And this last week we were able to catch both of them! We had plans to go over the family proclamation with Eddie, and it just so happened that Melinda was able to sit in as well. We were a little nervous about this at first, because the two of them are not currently married, and there is a lot of stuff in the family proclamation about the importance of being married. But over the course of reading it, we actually had a really cool experience! By the end of it, Melinda and Eddie were asking if we would marry them, if they would and could be sealed in the temple, and were very excited to come to church! We've planned a tour of the temple grounds with them for this week, and they are very excited about it.

We also had another miracle with a different part member family. The names of these two are Eric and Eva. This was the first chance that we had had to meet with them, and they are both fairly new to the ward. They have only been living here for about a month. Eric has been a member for about four years, and Eva has never expressed any interest before in going to church but since she has met Eric and they have moved in together, she has been very interested. The meeting we had this last week was one of the first ones that we've been able to have with them, and we were just expecting a pretty standard first visit. We didn't have much time with them, so we decided to just read from the Book of Mormon with them. We read a story about when Christ visited the Americas and blessed the children. By halfway through it, Eva was in tears and the spirit was incredibly strong! We invited her to be baptized and she accepted!

We have two baptisms coming up this weekend. One of them is in this area, and her name is Jaden. She's a 12-year-old girl, whose family are members who are looking to get back into the church. It is been very cool working with them! The other baptism is in Dolan Springs! It's going to be hard to get down there, but I'm hoping that I will be able to make it! The name of the investigator is Betty. She was one mine and Elder Aitchison's favorite investigators, and she is being baptized this weekend! She asked Elder Aitchison and I to do the baptism and confirmation!

It’s been a great week, but that’s all I have time for today.  Know that I love you all! Hope you all have a great week!

Elder Excell

Exchanges with Elder Butcher.  He was one of my old district leaders who went home last week.

Q&A - 8/29/2016

1.)  Are you feeling any better about things this week? Being a leader is hard sometimes!  --  I'm feeling lots better. We were able to sort out a lot of the problems really quickly. It was mostly just that day that was stressful. I got some really good advice from President Snow in his email to me, and some equally good advice from dad!

2.) How was your time with the AP's? --  It was really great! I was with Elder Seranilla in the APs area. They work in YSA ward, so that was different but exciting. Elder Seranilla also served in Dolan Springs, so we had a lot of good conversations about that. We also had a lot of good conversations about how the work is going in the zone as well as in the mission!

3.) What do you have in common with Elder Branning? What is your favorite thing about him? – We both love to sing, we both have a very similar sense of humor, and we enjoy a lot of the same things. Elder Branning is very smart, a great leader, and hilarious. He does some great impressions! I'll try to send a video of him at the talent show we held at the Christmas conference on last year.

4.) What happened this past week that you consider a success? -- We had a great couple, that we've been working with, come to church this last week. The husband has been less active and hasn't come to church in over three decades, and his wife is not a member. They came to church, and really loved their experience there! For many years, he was on the do not contact list. We just happened upon him and his family one day, and the ward has been amazed with the progress they've been making! We've definitely been very blessed to get to know the family!

Flash Flood in North Las Vegas from Traci Excell on Vimeo.

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