Tuesday, November 30, 2010

30 November 2010

Hey Family!
It's the last day of November... already! Holy cow! This Saturday is my Monthday. 4 months. Crazy!
This week has been a good one.
I found out that in the bordering ward, the Felicita Ward, there is a Brother Weddle. Yes, that Brother Weddle. I hope there is some stake activity that I can go meet him at, and give him a U sign!
Thanksgiving was good, except that my companion and I were SICK all day. Our mission president's wife told us to stay inside all day. A sick day as a missionary is not as fun as a sick day as a human. We got to watch Church movies all day. That's it. We had to call our Thanksgiving dinner and tell them we couldn't come, but he said to come down anyway to pick up a plate. We went down, and they had two spots on their table for us (the rest of it was cleared, because they already ate). The dad, Brother Cottam, talked to us as we ate our dinner. He is a jazz trombonist! I hope he lets me play sometime.
Utah beat byu! WOO!!! Most of the people down here are upset for that... haha! Go UTES! Elder Child is a big Ute fan too, so we had a good day.
We were going to a dinner appt. the other day, and we were going about 60 on a lonely dark road. Suddenly there was a huge buck that jumped in the road. We swerved violently, missing the buck's head by about 1/2 an inch. In doing so, we almost swerved off the road into a medium-steep drop. That was scary!!! But, we're alive. Whew
Yesterday we went to a Chinese place with Brother Boroughs and Brother Smith. I got some orange chicken, and it had what looked like a radish or something on it. I decided to eat it, and see what it tasted like. The next 20 minutes were spent extinguishing the inferno in my mouth caused from an intense extra-spice cayenne pepper. That ruined my lunch!
Our investigators are doing well. The biggest update is that Barry committed to (missionary lingo, I know) a baptismal date! he is scheduled for Dec 18. He seems excited for it. He has a lot of questions about the Priesthood that we're trying to answer, that we really can't answer. Such as, why is the Aaronic Priesthood not named after Moses, and why are the apostles called disciples, when everyone else is called disciples too. The simple answers we gave him just confused him, so that made it pretty frustrating! We'll have to continue to study up on everything Priesthood.
Billy and Jamie are doing well also. Billy has a new girlfriend, named Sherry. She is a recovering alcoholic, and super nice. She is a Lutheran, but loves to study about other faiths, especially our church. Billy is trying to get her to listen to us.
Jamie had her baby right before I got here, so it's been hard to get a hold of her, but she is doing very well.
Christmas season is coming up! The decorations are already up here in CA, as I'm sure there are where you all live.
I hope to hear from you all! I haven't gotten letters in two weeks, so you better write! The emails are very appreciated, so those of you who have been writing, thank you.
I hope you all have a wonderful week. I love you all
Elder Jon La Follette

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

23 November 2010

Hey family!
I guess you are all wondering,
I have been transferred to Escondido (some of you may have heard of it). We serve in the Escondido 1st ward, and San Pasqual ward. It's pretty sweet. The geography here is weird-- lots of bumps (they call them mountains), but not in a big line. They just are there randomly throughout the valley. If you look at a bowl of bubbly oatmeal, it looks like that.
My companion right now is Elder Child, from Magna, UT. He was pretty happy to find out I was a U fan. He wants to go there in about a year. This is his last transfer in the mission, he'll go home Dec 28 or 29. He reminds me a LOT of Brad Christopherson. Not the same look, but the same voice, mannerisms, and he LOVES cars and is a good mechanic and fix-it guy. He also makes a lot of "Christopherson jokes." It's been easy to get along with him.
There are some members in the ward we visit a lot to get supplies for whatever, to work on service projects, or to hang out on P-Day, named the Boroughs. In their living room, they have a pool table, a HUGE rock display with a black giraffe statue, a talking parrot in a big cage, a chess set, a weight machine, a bunch of comfy recliners, and a large swimming pool. Yes, indoors. For Tara, Camille, Joe, and whoever else, you know those houses we used to build on The Sims game that were too good to ever happen? That's the Boroughs house. They also have ten (10) pianos. To make it more interesting, Bro. Boroughs served a mission, wears garments, went to BYU, actively attends church and activities, but doesn't believe in God. He has a very interesting but fun personality. They are a fun family. They get offended and annoyed if we ever ask for permission to get or use anything. If we ask they'll say "of course you can, why are you asking?"
We have some pretty awesome investigators, and a recent convert that we teach. The RC is Christine, who is dating a guy that lives in Vista, also a member. She is around 50, but has a personality like Tara, just super happy, silly sometimes, and very fun to be around.
Our investigators are cool too. Billy is a former NFL receiver, played for NYG, and the Chargers, and is a "dry member." He is waiting for his parole to be over in February to get baptized. He is super solid and happy with the church.
We have Jamie, a lady with two kids (2 yrs old and 2 weeks old), who also has a fabulous testimony and actively attends everything. She is waiting for a probation exception from the First Presidency to get baptized. President Cook is working on that with Salt Lake.
We also have the Pinson family. Bro Pinson was excommunicated, but is working hard on coming back to church, and has a wonderful testimony. The first night I was here, we went to see him at work (he's never home), and he used his position at Nordstrom to trade one of my beat-up pairs of shoes for a brand new pair of really nice ones that were more expensive, but with no cost! Everyone helps missionaries in their own way. That is the way he likes to help. Sis. Pinson is a member, and their two children are 9, and are waiting for their dad to be baptized again so he can baptize them. They are so wonderful.
Our newest investigator, Barry, is a big black guy (I seem to be teaching a lot of those!) from Pacific Beach, CA. He just showed up to stake conference a week and a half ago, and wanted to be taught. He's been taught by missionaries before, and wants to try again. He is getting fellowshipped well, and I have no doubt he'll be baptized while I'm here in Escondido.
That's all of the people we've taught since I've been here.
What are everyone's plans for Turkey Day? I hope you all have a great one! We're just eating with some members in the ward. Remember to be grateful for blessings outside of Thanksgiving. We are really blessed.
I love you all so much! I hope you have a fabulous week, and for the Utahns, enjoy the snow!

Elder Jon La Follette

PS--- RIVALRY WEEK! GO UTAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Someone wear red on Saturday for me, and cheer extra loud. A lot of members here are BYU fans. A couple are U fans. I can't wait to give them a hard time when Utah trucks BYU. Go UTES!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

9 November 2010

Hi family!
I don't have a lot of time, but it's been a good week.
Monday-Wednesday the Santa Ana winds came in and suddenly November turned to July. It got up to 98 degrees on Wednesday. Whew! That was hot. But it's nice and cool now.
We have a new investigator, Phillip, in the singles branch. He was a referral from church HQ, and has a friend that is an active member of another branch. Long story short, we gave him a book of Mormon, and have taught him 4 lessons. He has been to church twice and LOVES LOVES LOVES it. He has a baptismal date for the 21st of November. He keeps telling us every day how excited he is.
I am sorry I don't have time to give updates for everyone else, but our investigators are doing well. Rod didn't come to church so we'll have to push his BD another week. Marvin is doing awesome and found some work part time. He is actually sitting next to me here at the library looking for more work. He is awesome.
Transfers are a week from today. It is very likely that Elder Hinds will leave, and I will stay here with a new companion. We find out Saturday night.
I apologize that this is so short this week. I love you all so much. Keep your letters coming! I pray for each one of you individually every day. Stay happy!
Love, Elder Jon La Follette
PS- Utah vs. TCU......yuck. Let's all hope they pick it up.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

2 November 2010

Hey family! I hope you all had a great week.
This week has been trying, especialyl because my back tire on my bike bent, so I can't ride my bike for a little while, probably for two more weeks, when it gets fixed at transfers.
We have a couple new investigators, one of them reminds me a LOT of Tara. Her name is Collette Graham, but she goes by Bishop. She has the same stature, haircut, hair color, face, mannerisms, open mind, and similar personality to Tara. It's weird! She also went air softing at the Marine base with her husband this weekend. She is awesome.
Last night we dropped by her house a little late for our appointment, and her husband, David, answered the door. He said they couldn't meet because he and Bishop were about to head to church. It was Monday night, so I knew it was another church. We were disappointed, until we asked which church. He talked about how his neighbors (members of the branch) had invited him to church tonight. Then we realized it was the singles FHE, which we were about to go to. We turned from sad to glad in one second! We go every week to the branch FHE, so it was fun to watch them get acquainted and have a good time.
This Thursday we had Elder Zwick of the Seventy come to our mission. I can't possibly summarize all that I learned when he was here, but I learned so much about how tobe a better missionary and human. He talked a lot about having a solid foundation on Christ. That is the only thing that is immovable (Hel 5:12). I had a great experience. I also got a picture with him and his wife. (He and his wife were U grads, so we enjoyed talking about the football season for a brief moment!)
On Wednesday, we had a lesson with Rod Hudson at the church, but my bike was broken, so we had to get a ride, or walk. We spent an hour calling for a ride in the morning (27 different people) but no one could come. Finally we got a ride for our investigator, but we had to walk. We also had planned on a member coming with us--Jesse, who is in a wheelchair. We walked to get Jesse, knowing we'd have to push him to Church. He was still in bed, and the only one home. But, he yelled out the window and told us one window was unlocked. So we hopped the wall, climbed through a bunch of garbage and furniture, pried open the window screen, and climbed in the window to get in his apartment. We felt like ninjas. We got him up and dressed, and ran over to the church.
Got a letter from Brett this week too, he is in Sweden. He is happy and doing well.
Well family, it's been a good week. Trying, but good. I love you all so much. I pray for you, and I hope you pray for me.
Talk to you next week
Elder La Follette