Tuesday, August 26, 2014

4 Weeks Out!

Definitely the least exciting week in the CCM, but it was still good!

Picture attached is of one of the beautiful sunrises we have! Yes I am up early enough to see the sun rise. Ironically the sunrises and the sunsets are in the same spot. Still haven't figured out how that happens because I am pretty sure I’m still on the planet earth, and I know that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west. no se.

On the topic of weather if you like thunder this is the place to come! The thunder here is sooooooo loud its crazy! Like rattles windows and scares Hermanas loud! But its cool and the lighting is cool too!

Funny story, so I was looking in a dictionary and there was a word I couldn’t read and it was in english. I was like conn.....congra......contrat...what does "congratulete" mean? I am so stuck in trying to pronounce spanish words I can’t even read the english word "to congratulate" anymore. Felt like a big dummy after that! But my spelling has gotten terrible now, investigators are now investagadors because thats close to the spanish spelling. (Had to spell check it to even spell it in english just now.)

Cool experience Hermana Wainwright in my district started sharing an story about how people are rooting for us back home and especially those who aren’t able to serve missions. This led to the thought of us as missionaries aren’t alone, There are angels of missionaries and ancestors right along side us helping us teach the investigators and testifying right along side us that the message is true. A lot like how the pioneers felt that their carts were being pushed and no one was there. It is a really cool thought and I know it is true. Now if only I could paint and paint a picture of that. Because it is a beautiful sight in my head!

It is so important to share the gospel and fellowship others! Many many converts come first through someone who is a member inviting them to activities with the church and fellowshiping them that way. And if they have a friend in the church they are more likely to stay active in the church because they know and have friends in the ward.

One of the coolest experiences I had at home was choosing the seminary theme for the 2013-2014 year. One of my favorite scriptures. Its 2 Nephi 31:20. That scripture has popped up so many times already here in the CCM. I know that God inspires us to do certain things and choose certain actions for a reason. I have a great love for that scripture already and now it is in the mission field too!

For some reason I have become weak, my eyes seem to be more leaky. And I don’t understand it. ;) The spirit has such a power to influence for good, even though I don’t think tears are very useful.

This week has been good for spanish. I have finally been able to stop writing a script for my lessons. We have been able to go in with just a list of scriptures and teach a lesson. I know that the gift of tongues is real. I have learned more spanish and about spanish more in the 4 weeks here than I did in two years of french in Jr high!

My teacher Hermano Cruz told us a story from his mission. His companion was from America and was fluent in Spanish in 6 months, but they ran into some missionaries from another church that had been in Mexico for 10 years that were only functional and not fluent. Power of God right there!

Me and my companion had to teach a lesson to Hermana Wainwright who was acting like her cousin. We had to asses her needs and teach a lesson right there. It was a really cool experience because elder Burgon and i were on exactly the same page for the lesson without talking about exactly what we were going to do beforehand. The spirit was definitely guiding the lesson. I know that it is the spirit who teaches and not me. I pray every day to be a mouthpiece for the lord.

Another experience is that we were teaching our investigator Alexa and she decided to change the teaching spot. So Elder Burgon and I didn’t stop off at our prayer bench. That was one of the hardest lessons because we didn’t pray for the gift of tongues and for the guidance of the spirit. I could barely understand what she was trying to tell us. Never gonna forget to pray again!

In my farewell talk, you might remember, I said something like "Drew you got this, the gospel was shoveled down right alongside the mashed potatoes!" I don’t feel like that anymore! There is so much more that I don’t know! I am constantly learning more and more about the gospel every day! It is not enough to just go to church and say you know everything, or to listen to your seminary teacher/dad. You have to search it out for yourself and find out and learn on your own. That is how a testimony is built! 

The CCM is really the refiners fire for missionaries! I have learned so much, and yet I still feel guilty for not learning more! The Gospel is so true! I wish I could just read the scriptures every day! Cada Dia todo Dia! The scriptures are so amazing!

I am ashamed to say this but I used to think that it was tacky to have pictures of the Book of Mormon stories in your house. But now I want to cover the walls of my home in pictures of Nephi, Mormon, Alma, Mosiah, Helaman. Not only pictures but big portraits! They are so strong in the gospel and everyone should try to be like them! There is a cool story about captain Moroni and Mormon said that if everyone in the world could be like him the world would be the most righteous place ever! I want to be like Captain Moroni and have a prophet say that I am so righteous that everyone should be like me. Not because I want people to look up to me, but to be that close to the Lord and to his purpose!

Sorry for the ramble!

I know this church is true and it blesses the lives of all those who live it! Jesucristo es nuestro salvador, y el vive! arrepentiemiento es verdad y ayudamos muchas en nosotros vidas! El Evangelio es verdad. Dios es nuestro amaroso padre celestial!

Elder Porter

PS Sorry for the terrible grammar/spelling. Spanish keyboards suck.

One part of his email to me that I want to share:
Thanks mom! Doing good! But I wish I would have prepared more beforehand, but can’t change that now. There is one thing you guys could pray for me for and that is more faith. Because faith is everything and you can’t have too much of it. It is said like a bazillion times in the Book of Mormon. Got to go. Love you
Trying to get clean sheets cuz they didn't give us new ones.  Too bad the window was locked.

Mexico sunrise

Mexico MTC (CCM) campus

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Half way through the CCM

This week has been good! The days are long, but the weeks fly by! I cant believe I am half way through the CCM!

My day is like this. Wake up, pray, study, pray, eat, gym,  pray, study, study, study, pray, eat, pray, study, study, teach, study, pray, eat, pray, study, study, sing a hymn with the zone, sleep. Repeat

One thing I am grateful for is stain remover, eating with a white shirt on is probably the hardest thing in the world!

One cool experience I had last week that I forgot to share is that I got to give a blessing to a Hermana in my district. She was really sick with the virus that went around and she asked me to give her a blessing. The power of the priesthood is so cool! I am so glad I can help others with the power of God here on this earth!

On the topic of the priesthood we had a very interesting lesson in priesthood meeting on Sunday. the topic was priesthood (very funny I know) but one good point that Pres. George (he is a counselor to the branch president) made is that women are born with the nature to nurture, which is the nature of Godliness, but when it comes to little boys it is all about destruction or competition. The reason that men are given the priesthood and commanded to go on missions is so they can learn to care and nurture others like women do naturally. So the purpose of the priesthood is to make men more like women. And on that note there was a study done at BYU testing the femininity or masculinity of people. and men at BYU leaned more towards the feminine side. The reason this was is because the questions were about how much you care for other people. Since BYU is predominately LDS and the men are returned missionaries, this makes sense. So props to you girls who already have the caring nature.

Spanish is interesting. I was talking to Elder Santana who was one of the Latinos in our dorm (pic included of the night before they left) and he was asking me about what I have learned and stuff. We got to the days of the week and I told him that I don't know those, or how to count past 39 or the alphabet, but that they stuck us directly into conjugating verbs and making sentences. He was so surprised that we didn't start at the beginning of the language. This is a testament to the power of the gift of tongues, we get thrown directly into the language without starting at the basics and we actually learn the language!
Also if I hadn't taken french in jr high, I would have been more lost because I knew a little about how to learn a language and about conjugating verbs (which sucks by the way) but for the first little bit it was hard because I could only think of french words. Sometimes I would say "moi" instead of the Spanish "me" in our lessons!

I had two really cool experiences this week. One really confidence boosting and one really humbling.

First one. We were in class and our teacher said that we were going split up and teach each other. Elder Burgon and I got to teach Elder Dalton. We didn't have a lesson plan or anything to help us with Spanish. We had to go in, figure out his problems (we have created our own investigators based off of someone we know) and then teach a lesson. We were able to get the message across in total Spanish and he said he felt the spirit! It was really nice to know that my Spanish is getting better so I can help others feel the spirit.

The other experience was on the same day. Elder Dalton and His companion Elder Kuhn were teaching our investigator Jose in front of the class. Elder Dalton has pretty good Spanish but Elder Kuhn stumbles over his words a lot. It was towards the end of the lesson and I wasn't thinking it was going very well because Elder Kuhn was speaking worse because he was getting stressed out. But then I looked up and I saw that Jose was crying. Boy was that a smack to the face because I had thought that it wasn't going very well. I learned the important lesson that day, that it isn't about what you can say out loud with words, but what you can say with your heart through the Holy Ghost. 

Also Elder Burgon and I are the new Zone Leaders. our previous Zone Leaders left this morning. It is a lot easier than you think it would be. Pretty much just coordinate meetings and report to the Branch pPresidency about the zone. I am grateful for the opportunity to set and example for others and to be a leader in the Army of God.

Love you all!

Elder Porter

To mom he sent: 
Thanks for the present! I’ve had a cold so I haven’t eaten any of it, but I loved the letters! [We sent him a few treats and letters when Scott Johnson delivered his tennis shoes.]

Yep we have the same teachers, companion, district, and investigators till I leave.

I bet you wont believe when I say this. I MISS YOUR CRAZY HEALTHY FOOD!!!!  I’m sick of cafeteria food and feeling like I’m eating but not getting nutrition. And I’m breaking out like none other from the food. It sucks!  I now have arm zits.

Me and the Latino elders who just left

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

2nd Email from CCM

Fun fact. In my zone there is an Elder Van Pelt.


This week has flown by and has been forever long.  A quote I like is, "You feel like you are born in the CCM and you feel like you are going to die in the CCM."

But it has been a good week and I have learned a lot.  God really does live and answer prayers.  Spanish is still way hard but I am getting it slowly but surely.  There is so much material that I can study that it is hard to decide what to do.  I have started with just making flash cards and memorizing the articles of faith in Spanish because I already know them in English.

There has been a sickness that has gone around that leaves everyone with the runs and with a nasty headache, but I am fortunate enough to be the "apothecary" (as my district calls me) and have not gotten sick.  I'm so glad that I brought the essential oils.

I had a really cool experience yesterday.  We have finished with our first investigator and it was a big learning experience.  I learned a lot from not being able to teach very good.  (our investigators are our teachers fyi) and so it is the same person for our second investigator but it doesn't seem like it.  His name is Jose. and it was difficult to teach him because he doesn't believe in God and is only taking the lessons because his wife wants him to.  She has cancer btw.  So my companion and I were trying to figure out what to teach him because he doesn't believe in God.  We got a lesson prepared and were going to try and get him to pray because we had to get him feeling the spirit somehow and this was the only way we could think of establishing a connection between heaven and him.   I was struggling a little bit because our last lesson with David I didn't understand what was being said.  So I prayed super hard for the gift of tongues.  Our lesson went completely off topic with Jose, but it was really cool because I felt like we should go off topic from what we had prepared and try to get him  to feel the spirit.  He didn't accept our commitment but the cool part for me was that I spoke more in the lesson with him than I had ever before, and I understood what he wanted us to hear.  I couldn't tell you what the words mean but I got the general message.

One thing that really helps is these videos they show in class of random people that were taken by the New York Times.  It is called "One in a Million."  I would suggest that all of you go on there and watch a clip or two and then decide how you would share the gospel with them.  It is really interesting and helps you understand the gospel better.  

A funny experience this week:  so two of the elders in our zone have a fake front tooth and they can take out.  So Elder Kuhn decided that he was going to play a prank on our teacher, Hermana Gutierrez, by acting like his tooth fell out.  So his companion made a really loud banging noise and he popped his tooth out and started acting like it fell out.  The whole class was crying we were laughing so hard and the teacher was freaking out and looking for his tooth on the ground.  Finally he popped it back in and she still looked for it for  a good 15 more seconds!  We were on the ground with laughter and she was really mad at us for the next little while.

We had a cool devotional on Sunday.  We watched a video of the 2011 Christmas devotional at the Provo MTC by Elder Bednar.  I would recommend it to anyone!  The coolest part he talked about was becoming like Christ and searching for his characteristics.  He said that if we did this we would be truly converted and never fall away from the gospel like so many missionaries sadly do.  The main characteristic he talked about was the ability to look outward when most would look inward.  Even  when Christ was on the cross he was preaching to the others on the cross's next to him.  And he was looking out for his mom and making sure she was taken care of.

So I didn't tell where my companion was going.  All the Elders in my district are going to Ecuador Guayaquil mission and all the sisters are going to Chile Rancagua mission.  I flew in with an Elder Weese who is from Logan who is going to the same mission (ironically his cousin is Regan Rich, who hit my car in the Davis high parking lot junior year) and he is companions with Elder Blood who is also going to Indiana.  Supposedly we were supposed to be a trio, but they switched it around at the last minute.  We are all in the same zone however.

The natives in our dorm are a little crazy.  The one speaks super good English and the other one is 19 and looks like he is 12.  And he doesn't speak a lick of English.  They are really nice though, but I have to get over my racist stereotype and stop feeling like my stuff is going to be stolen.

I had this question on Saturday and it was bugging me pretty bad.  The question was, "If God loves all his children the same and he shows his love to them by giving the gospel to them, why didn't he reveal the gospel for 2000 years after Christ?  Did he not love those people as much?"  This was on my mind for quite some time and I asked one of the Hermanas about it and she couldn't answer me and neither could my companion.  During personal study on Sunday morning I was reading in Moroni 7 specifically verses 37-38 and this led me on an hour long scripture chase that took me to Acts 17:30, Moroni 8:22 and Alma 32:19.  This was the coolest thing because it answered my question perfectly. I am missing one scripture and it says something like "It would have been better that they had not known it" but I can't find it.  So if anyone could help me that would be wonderful!  (I am definitely missing the search function on gospel library)
But the answer that I received was so simple it was amazing.  It is that God was actually being merciful because the people were so wicked and hard hearted that they wouldn't have accepted the gospel anyways.  And since they had heard the truth they would have been punished for it.  So God didn't give it to them so they wouldn't be punished for their stupidity and thick skulls.  He had to wait for the people to be ready to accept the gospel message again so that he could bless his children again.

This experience was amazing to me because God really knows what we need and what to give us.

My testimony in broken Spanish.  But I know that it is true, and the gospel is true no matter what language you speak it in.

Yo se que Jose Smith es un profeta verdadera.  Yo se que Jesucristo vida.  Yo se que el Evangelio es verdad.  Yo se que Tomas S. Monson es un profeta.  Yo se que Dios es amaroso an dmisercordio.  en el nombre de Jesucristo amen.

Love you all!

Love Elder Porter

Elder Porter!!
The Elder's without their teeth!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

1st Email from Mexico City MTC

¡Hola everyone¡ This time I am just sending out a mass email because because everyone has the same questions. 

(Pardon my spelling and punctuation mistakes. The Spanish keyboards are weird)

I am doing really good! I cant believe that it is almost it has been a week! The time has flown! 

The day I got here was the biggest rain storm they have had in a long time and we got caught in it so a lot of my stuff got wet. But nothing was damages thankfully. Right now it is monsoon season so it is supposed to rain every day, but it hasnt yet. I really like the weather here, i think i could actually live in a place like Mexico, but maybe not Mexico City because it is so ghetto! The CCM is like the book Divergent. You cant access the outside world because it is dangerous. The CCM used to be a high school and my Branch President came here when he was a boy 40 years ago. 

I am living in a dorm right now and we had another companionship in the other room but today we got another companionship that are natives so that will be good for the Espanol. My companion is Elder Burgon from Orem. He looks kinda like Ron Weasly and people have started calling him Elder Weasley. He is a really cool guy and he works super hard. He also has one of the funniest laughs ever! The other compaionship is Elder Bichsel (bick-soul) and Elder Bleazard (blaaazaard) both from Utah. Elder Bichsel looks and acts exactly like Vector from Despicable Me. He is one of the strangest but most hilarious people ever. He has so many funny impersonations such as Obama, Jack Sparrow, Shaggy from scooby doo, etc.

There are 3 Elder companionship's in my district and 2 Hermana companionship's. They are all awesome! Hermana Bradshaw came from a polygamist background and left it when she was ten, and Hermana Temple looks like Nora off of Step Up. If you can´t tell I like finding out what people look like.

I am not really homesick at all right now, sorry if that bugs you. I think its because the food here is actually edible. I think I am going to gain some weight here. Its because I stop eating because I am bored, not because I am full. But here there are so many options every meal that I just eat and eat. There is always a peanut butter/nutella bar, and there is always cold cereal too. Its muy bien!

An interesting thing that I found is that the boogers here are a different color than back home. Bright green compared to our nasty green in Utah. Just thought I would share that juicy tidbit of info.

Learning Spanish is really hard. Especially because we don't have a set teacher till the end of this week. I am the only one who hasn't taken any Spanish whatsoever and it makes it really hard. Saturday was the hardest day because we did a lot with Spanish. I was a little down when we got back to our room. So i opened up one of those letters that you guys wrote to me. it helped so much! Thanks guys! But after that i got on my knees and said a prayer. Nothing really came to me that night. But Sunday morning i was sitting in bed reading in 2 Nefi 32 and verses 3-4 really helped me a lot. I know that heavenly father answers our prayers and gives us the comfort that we need in our times of hardship. then later in the chapter verses 8-9 were perfect for our investigator. Yep we already have an investigator and we have to do it all in espanol.

We taught our investigator for the first time on Friday and boy was it the worst lesson you have ever had. His name is David and has two kids and a wife. He really is going to be our teacher in a few weeks but we aren't supposed to know that. Not knowing your investigator is beforehand really makes it real. It is exactly like teaching a real investigator even though i know he is a member. but we have taught him 2 times since and my comprehension of all the Spanish words that he says has gone up tremendously! i cant believe how far i have come in this little time. but don't get me wrong, i still suck way bad. But back to the investigator....we have gotten him to read in Moroni 10, and he did it with his family, and we committed him to pray every day last time. we are alittle behind on the lessons because our first lesson was terrible. Buttomorrow we are teaching the plan of salvation.

I have run into some kids from Davis. Elder Brad Cox and Elder Jacob Merrill from seminary council, Elder Derek Madsen, Elder Shane Inman also. there are a few more from davis but i dont know their names.

My companion got a package from his mom yesterday. it took a week to get here. It was some nice sugar cookies that were rock solid, but we still tried to eat them. WORST COOKIES EVER!!!!! Tasted like 3 day old mac n cheese! it was the funniest thing of my life! i couldn't stop laughing for like 5 minutes.

Also real toilet paper is a thing of the past. Its that crappy stuff that all meetinghouses have. Boy am i glad I'm  going back to the states whenever i have to use the baƱo! ;)

I also realized that i forgot my tennis shoes, tried to buy some at the tienda, but they didn't have my size. So been playing soccer and handball all fancy like in church shoes! The lady said they might have some today which is good. its only like $450 to get them. In pesos of course. 

Hopefully my letter makes sense. I realized that writting makes my ADD go crazy!!

Love you all!!!


Elder Porter

P.S. you have to send each picture one at a time here at the CCM (might be different in the field) so there wont be a ton of pictures in my emails while i am in the CCM at least

P.P.S. I like seeing pictures of you guys. So feel free to send me them in your emails!

Elder Porter & Elder Burgon "Weasley"

Friday, August 1, 2014

Made it to the Mexico MTC!! July 30, 2014

I have arrived safely!  Mexico is beautifully messy!  My p-day is on Tuesday.

Love you all so much!!

Elder Porter

Yes, that was pretty much his whole email to us today!  (Except for a request for immunizations dates).  He must have been in a hurry.  Hopefully they get longer and more informative as they go along :)

Farewell Day

Elder Porter's Sacrament Talk: July 27, 2014
A couple months ago I had a great opportunity to go to Boston because my mom has an unhealthy obsession with running. I had just received my call a few weeks prior to going to Boston and I still felt like I had eons of time to prepare for my mission. Since we didn't want to rent a car we spent a lot of time walking and riding the subway. On one of those many and frequent subway rides I was looking at all the passengers around me on the subway. As I was looking at them I realized that my family was more than likely to be the only members of the church on that subway car. This just made my heart hurt because I realized that most people in the world don't have the secure knowledge that I have been privileged to since a young age like where do we come from, why are we here, where are we going. And then it hit me like a pan to the head. "Drew, You are going to have to teach people much like this, because Indiana is not that far away from Boston." Ya you could say I didn't think that my mission was that far away after that.

Mosiah 18:9 states "Yea....and to stand as a witness of Got at all times and in all things and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection that ye may have eternal life."

We renew the 3 baptismal covenants every week when we partake of the sacrament. The first one being that we make is to take upon us the name of Christ. this is a promise that we make every week, and sometimes we may forget the impact that this covenant has on our every day lives. When we take Christ's name upon ourselves we are promising to emulate Christ in every action we do, and to stand as a witness of him at all times. This whole emulating Christ thing scares  me because I know for sure that I tickled and teased my siblings way more than Christ ever would have.

I was looking under witness in the topical guide and it said "see also: Apostles."  Now if we make a covenant to witness of Christ every week, then that means that each and every one of us is an apostle in a sense. The word apostle means literally means "one sent forth" but the gospel spin on the definition is "one sent forth to share a witness of Christ."

At the waters of Mormon Alma taught that one of the "duties" of those who are "desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people ," was "to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death" (Mosiah 18).

When I realized in Boston that I would be a witness to people just like the ones surrounding me, you could say that I got just a little nervous. Thoughts were running through my head like "what if I don't know what to tell them to help them," "Did I sluff seminary too much?," or "What if I cant remember an important verse that could help them?" But then I started to think logically "Ok Drew, you have been a member of the church all your life. You have known this stuff since primary." and a better thought was, "Your dad is a stinking seminary teacher! This stuff was shoveled down right along with the mashed potatoes!"

Growing up in a strong Gospel centered home has definitely been an advantage in my life, and even more now that I am headed off on a mission. But knowing the gospel and preaching the gospel are two different things.

There are two things that most people don't like to talk about, religion and politics. Ironically thats all my dad does talk about. I feel like people don't like to talk about religion because they haven't had a visitation by angels or seen a vision. But those cases are really rare to begin with. A prophet has told us that the witness of the Holy Ghost makes an impression on our soul that is more significant than a visitation from an angel.

3 Nephi 28:11 states "And the Holy Ghost beareth record of the Father and me; and the Father giveth the Holy Ghost unto the children of men, because of me."

Elder Nelson in the last general conference shared an experience with one of his coworkers telling him to separate his professional knowledge from his religious knowledge. He responded with "truth is truth! it is not divisible, and any part of it cannot be set aside."

All truth emanates from our Heavenly Father. And as such the Holy Ghost testifies of all truth. I cannot tell you how many times throughout my life and preparations for my mission, that I have been told that it is not the missionary that converts people, it is the Holy Ghost.

D&C 100:5 says "Therefore, verily I say unto you, lift up your voices unto this people; speak the thoughts that I shall put into your hearts, and you shall not be confounded before men;"

When we testify, the Holy Ghost touches the hearts of those who are listening to the testimony being shared and lets them know that what is being spoken is the truth.

Dallin H. Oaks in the October 1990 General Conference that, "Everyone who has received the witness of the Holy Ghost has a duty to share that testimony with others."  And that, 'The duty to witness and testify of Christ at all times and in all places applies to every member of the Church who has received the testimony of the Holy Ghost." I feel that this duty is perfectly encapsulated in the common phrase "every member a missionary"

D&C 60:2 says "But with some I am not well pleased, for they will not open their mouths, but they hide the talent which I have given unto them, because of the fear of man. Wo unto such, for mine anger is kindled against them"

 Being a witness doesn't always mean that you have to go and try and convert every person you see. But it does mean that you need to have the courage to talk about Christ and what he has done for you.

I have a friend who isn't a member of the church, but she is one of the strongest Christians I know. I don't believe there is a time when I have been around her when she has not brought up her love for Christ and the feelings of gratitude that she has for all that he has done for her personally. This has been a great example to me because we do live in the Kaytown Bubble of Mormons. it is easy to get caught up in the thinking that everyone in Kaysville is already LDS. Just because the majority of the people in Utah and especially Kaysville are LDS doesn't mean that you have to be ashamed to share your testimony because they "already know it"

Elder Oaks says, "I say there has never been a greater need for us to profess our faith, privately and publicly."  And that was 24 years ago!

The world is so full of confusion and hypocrisy that so many people are lost. There are wars and rumors of wars, scams, frauds, and every other kind of deceit. there is no better time to share the message of the gospel to try and curb the evil that is in the world. Boyd K. Packer once said "The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior.”      

In Helaman 5, the Nephites and Lamanites are at war. Nephi and Lehi leave their homes and go down into the Lamanite lands and begin to preach to their enemies. They were beaten and imprisoned, and yet their message still got through. Verses 51&52 say, "And as many as were convinced did lay down their weapons of war, and also their hatred and the traditions of their fathers. And it came to pass that they did yield up unto the Nephites the lands of their possession."

The gospel has the power to stop wars, to change lives, and to restore what was once lost.

Romans 1:16 is my new favorite scripture. It reads, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth..."

I received my testimony of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon because I was not ashamed to share the gospel. There was a neighbor boy who was not a member of the church. One night I was laying in bed right after my mom tucked me in and the thought came to me to give a Book of Mormon to my neighbor. I did give him a Book of Mormon. A couple days later I was lying in bed again, and the thought came into my mind that the prompting to give him a Book of Mormon would not have entered my mind if it was not a true and correct book!

I know without a doubt that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the true church. I know that Heavenly Father has called his Prophets to lead and guide us in this dispensation. I know that Jesus Christ atoned for my sins to allow me to make it back to live with my Heavenly Father again. I know that I have a great work to do with the people of Indiana. And I know that My Redeemer Lives.

July 27, 2014 - What a great day we had.  Although it was very hot and our little AC unit couldn't quite keep up with the demand.  We had lots of food, family, friends and fun this day.  THANK YOU to everyone who came to support Drew before he left for his mission!  We love you all!!!