Tuesday, September 27, 2011

27 September 2011

Hello family! I hope all is going well for you.

We had a good week here for the most part. Janet and Grace didn't show up to church this week. They were on their way to church when Janet's grandson stole Janet's phone, threw it out the window while the car was driving, and destroyed the phone, so they pulled over to pick it up and continue to church. After they picked it up, they got back in the car, and the car wouldn't start up again. Bad luck! They will for sure watch general conference this weekend, they said. TJ (Janet's fiance) delayed our lesson this week twice, then ended up just cancelling it, and didn't try to go to church. We're going to have a throw-down lesson on Wednesday to try to get him to shape up. As interested as he is in finding the truth, he isn't making a very big effort to learn!

We finally got a hold of Julian, Leon, Amanda, and Tony this week, and had a lesson set up at the Davis's house (no we're not related). They didn't show up, and we found out later than Leon has two abrasions in his eye and had to go to the hospital. Hopefully he heals up soon. We're trying still to get another lesson in. They moved this week to a new complex outside our boundary, but still nearby. They want to stay with us and our ward, but we'll have to see how committed they are before we talk to President Cook about that. Hopefully we won't have to pass off 4 more baptisms to another ward. We've already given away 5 since I've been in Vista.

Ceyda and Lavena are doing very well. We finally had a lesson with them on Wednesday, and we were able to catch up Lavena some more on the lessons by teaching the Restoration. She is just as intelligent as Ceyda regarding the scriptures. They are learning a lot and are progressing very well. We're going to teach the Word of Wisdom on Wednesday. They drink green tea, but there shouldn't be any other issues. Pray that goes well! Lavena (I don't know if I mentioned--she's West's mom, Ceyda's mother-in-law, that lives with them) made some REALLY good gravy and gave it to us. Lots of meat and flavor, etc. Elder Bowen ended up eating most of it while I was in the shower and writing things down, but I got some of it.

Christian, Josh, and Joselyne are moving on Saturday to San Marcos (next city southeast of Vista, between Vista and Escondido), and won't be able to meet with us anymore. They will go to a new ward down there. We and the Spanish elders helped them move a bunch of stuff to storage on Saturday, took lots of pictures, and they bought us pizza. We'll probably see them once or twice more before they move.

Sister Poe is also doing well. On Friday, she was still concerned that she had to get baptized again, seeing that she'd been baptized twice already. We explained authority once again, which she understands. We had a good talk about it, and concluded that she would need to continue to read the Book of Mormon and pray sincerely about it. She is not pulling away at all; she will be fine. She didn't make it to church this week, and will be gone this weekend too, visiting her granddaughter in juvy in San Diego. Hopefully she can be baptized before I leave Vista, but I don't know if that will happen.

Yesterday we had interviews with President Cook (as well as flu shots, so don't worry Mom!). He told me my task in training Elder Bowen he knew was a challenging one, but felt from the beginning I was the right person to do it. He had spoken with his stake president from Idaho a few days ago, and learned a lot of things about Elder Bowen's background, especially family, that made him the way he is. Elder Bowen has told me much of his background, so I understood. I won't say most of it because it's private and sensitive, but President Cook told me he appreciates the things I'm teaching him and is happy with the progress we are making, and to keep hanging in there. President also hinted that I may stay in Vista longer. We'll see. This is my 4th transfer in Vista (the same length of time I was in Esco), but hopefully I can be here 5 or 6.

Whoever has my SD card that I sent late April, send it back! I'm almost out of room on the one I have. There are over 500 pictures waiting for y'all to see them! I'll send it as soon as I get my other one back.

I hope you all have a great week. Thanks again for your support. There are a lot of prayers in my behalf, and I see that in my work out here. I love you all very much. Have a great week!

Elder Jon La Follette


Maybe the Angels can pick it up next year.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

20 September 2011

Hey family, I hope you all had a good week

My week was okay. We didn't teach very many lessons, but it was still a good week. We had a couple more people at church this week. Janet and her daughter Grace (aka Angel) came to church. Janet's fiance TJ (aka Carter) didn't show up, even though he promised he would. Janet was heavily thinking of joining the Jehovah's Witnesses church, but wanted to come to ours. She/they had a great time at church and the ward just jumped on them as soon as sacrament meeting was over. Some people are overwhelmed by that, but it was really good for Janet and Grace. We couldn't even talk to them for several minutes because there was literally a line of people waiting to meet them. Maybe it was because they don't see black people in church very much. We have a bunch of black investigators right now (TJ Janet and Grace, Julian, Leon, and Tony, and Mary Poe) so maybe we can get some more black members! They are doing very well, and we will meet with them again on Friday.

Ceyda and Lavena came to church again and loved it as usual. They are also getting a lot of friends in the ward. Tonight they're going to a Relief Society function, and hopefully they can go on Saturday to the RS broadcast.

We picked up another couple of guys last week as investigators, Joel and his friend Rudy. They are devout JWs and wanted to meet with us to talk about our religions. They are different than most JWs we run into, being that they are very civil and non-combative. I don't know how far we'll get to go with them, but at least they listen to us and our message. They did say no to a prayer after the lesson though.

That's about all for investigators updates right now. Everyone is doing well for the most part. If you have questions about anyone, let me know. I'm not sure what you might want to know about them.

Last Tuesday we had a district activity in our church building. The activities have been always the same-- basketball with the elders, and when the sisters arrive, we play a game called "signs". This week, one of the elders taught us all how to play rugby (he played rugby in SLC before his mission. Wants to play for the U of U). We are all really bad at it, but it was so fun. We did a scrum, which is the part where everyone interlinks arms, bends down, and fights for the ball. I don't have any pictures of it, but it was really, really fun.

Last Wednesday we were walking down a street at night next to a place called Boomers, which is similar to Trafalga. We walked towards the place, and we heard a bunch of girls singing Called to Serve as we got closer. As we walked up, they sang really loud and cheered. It was a young womens group from San Marcos that was doing their Mutual activity, and they were happy to see elders walking by.

On Friday Elder Bowen and I had Christmas, just for fun. I have a Glade Cinnamon spray (to combat Elder Bowen) so it smelled really good in our apartment, and then we made gingerbread cookies while we were doing our weekly planning, listened to Christmas music, and wore green and red ties. To make it better, it was overcast and very cool outside. I was hoping Santa would even come, but he didn't.

Sunday mornings I always play the organ in the chapel long before sacrament meeting starts, and one of the bishopric heard me play and now is trying to get us missionaries to do a musical number in sacrament meeting. I'm not sure if I want to! I'm not very very good, and the other elders sing...ahem..very well. I'll let you know if that happens.

Last night we had dinner at the Guymons house, with several other families in the ward joining us. Elder Barlow (one of the elders in our ward) was dared for $1 to eat a Jabanero (spelling?) pepper. He did it, and for the next 30 minutes had pink eyes, a snotty nose, and tears constantly rolling down his face. One of the kids was assigned to bring him soda and cornbread to counter the heat. He got his dollar!

I was told the good news about the Utes!!! GO UTES!!!!! There's a family in our ward, the McKeons, that have a son at U of U, and are now all Utah fans. Sister McKeon wore a Utah polo shirt to church even. They always update me on college football scores. Wish I could have seen the game! But it's okay, it'll happen next year too. I figured that Utah might have won (before I found out the score) because no one was wearing their blue BYU ties to church. Hehe

General Conference is coming up. I strongly encourage you (BoM terms--exhort!) all to think of someone you can invite to watch Conference with you, maybe just 1 session. It's really a great opportunity to hear the Apostles and prophet speak. Even those not of our faith know very quickly that they are men of God. I hope you will all invite someone to hear conference. Let me know how it goes!

Well that's all for this week. I hope you are all doing well. Have a great week!


Elder La Follette

Monday, September 19, 2011

13 September 2011

We had some computer trouble here so my time is really short. I had a lot to say, but my time is really short.

It's been a good week. Ceyda's mother in law went to church and had a great time. They fed us BBQ on Saturday and Lavena (Ceyda's M-in-L) made some really yummy apple cinnamon pie and sent us home with the leftovers. Ceyda's been doing a lot of missionary work--and will bring one of her co-workers to church next week probably. It's interesting how much true conversion will make someone want to share the Gospel as much as they can. It makes me think if members of the church are truly converted, and do we have a "lasting conversion"?

You may or may not have heard of the blackout that happened in So Cal, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and Tijuana. We had our power go out Thursday afternoon until early Friday morning. It was nothing new for me, since power goes oout in Utah all the time, but the Californians had a really rough time. They are still talking about it! There was a ton of traffic on the highway and throughout the city--large and small streets, more than I've ever seen in my life! That was fun. We had neighbors below us take out a candle and roast marshmallows over it.

That's all the time I have, sorry. I hope you all have a great week. I love you all so much! The Church is true

Elder La Follette

Friday, September 9, 2011

6 September 2011

Hi family!

It's been a really productive week this week. We picked up 5 new investigators (a family of 3, a spouse of another, and West's mother that lives with Ceyda.) It's been nice to be busy! We never really had time for tracting or contacting because we were either in a lesson or on our way to one most of each day. It was really good to be busy. Julian, his brother Leon, and Julian's girlfriend Tony all accepted to be baptized on October 8th! They seem really solid, and we had a great dinner/lesson on the Restoration at a new ward family's house. Tony reminds me very, very much of Daniell, it's really funny! Unfortunately, Julian and Leon will be moving soon to another place in Oceanside, so we will probably have to pass them off to other missionaries. Should have expected it though! Since I've been in Vista, we have passed off 5 people that either got baptized, or will be baptized in coming weeks, all because of boundary rules.

Today is transfers in the mission, but Elder Bowen and I will be staying here in the Vista 3rd Ward. I will probably be here 6 more weeks, and then will be transferred. But, you never know!

Also, Josh and Amanda Adkins-Setty moved back to Oceanside today. We helped them move this morning. You don't know them, but they are good friends of mine (the other 3 missionaries in the ward don't know them at all or as well), the same ones whose computers I skyped on for Mothers Day.

We had rain yesterday for the first time in several months, it was really nice! Today is very hot and very humid. We are now entering the hottest part of the year for San Diego area (I don't know about other parts of Southern Cal).

Well that's really all for this week!

I hope you are all well.

Love, Elder La Follette