Thank Goodness for Clouds

July 21, 2014

Hello those who know and don't know me,

As usual, I feel there isn't too much to report on, as far as details. Still, there are a few people I'll talk about, because, you know, I am a missionary, and talking to people is what I do.

We are teaching a 10 year old, Gunner, right now. It's really helping me to learn to teach even more simply. His mom is supportive, though doesn't share her beliefs so she doesn't affect Gunner's decisions. He shows awesome understanding, and accepted to be baptized if he learns the Book of Mormon is true. Our challenge is going to be fellow shipping him. We want to bring kids with us, which might be a little hard, though we have to do it before school starts again! We are hoping for the best.

We are also teaching another family that is similar to the situation of one of my converts, Bobby (remember him, he was the Atheist that got baptized in Redlands). He believes in God, but not in Christ or in organized religion. He thinks it takes away from the important things. Why have all of these fancy shamncy rituals, in all religions, when we should focus on worshiping God? He's partially right. I would say that we should never let the culture, people, or the occasional politics get in the way of our salvation. If you get offended or confused, think about the sole reason you go to church, and then keep going. I have seen so many people who got offended, and then stopped going. Don't do that!! So yes, in that aspect, the man-created parts of organized religion is occasionally distracting. The God-given parts, however, are not. That's what we should focus on. Baptism and partaking of the Sacrament are important because, in all simplicity, God said so."I made this my rule- when the Lord commands, do it." - Joseph Smith 
So yeah. He is a great investigator, and wants to know. It's the desire to change, though, that will get people.

Pray that all the missionaries investigators will keep commitments. That's how we help build their faith, and help them receive answers to their prayers.

Thanks for all that you all do! I am loving the mission, and hope that I will be able to write more next week. 

Elder Summerhays

Hills + Golf Course = Yucaipa

My new companion Elder Ashcraft

July 14, 2014

Hello those who don't have to bike up and down hills to share the gospel,

No longer am I in the city of San Bernardino. Here I am, in the city of Yucaipa. I started out in this stake when I was in Beaumont. It's nice to be back to a familiar-ish area. A lot of the members know people I know from the Oak Valley ward, and even Redlands! There are so many hills here. It's pretty much a bunch of hills on one giant hill. I live at the top of the hill, out of my ward boundaries, so it's a lot of biking to get in our area, and especially to navigate it. It may have taken years and years, but I know have a great appreciation for the grid system. That doesn't exist here, so it's going to take me a while to learn the area. So far so good, though.
My new companion is Elder Ashcraft! He is from American Fork, UT. There goes my mission-long pattern of having a companion not from UT, then one from UT, and repeat. Two UTs in a row. I'm not complaining, though. 
God watches over me and my bike! When I arrived, I just had my broken bike. I broke the crank on it a few week prior, so when I had to start using it again, I just used it as a glorified scooter. Rode it down hill, walked up hill. Eventually, we meet a member, who's husband is not a member. They see my bike, and say I can borrow their bike, which was seldom used anyway. Back in business. 

I just started the Book of Mormon over again, and decided to keep a study journal of every thought I have when I read. I have felt super inciteful these past few days with it! The first chapters of the Book of Mormon are filled with so many things that can be missed over if just simply read. I feel like a cross-referencing master! There is so much to be learned! For example, Laman and Lemuel talk about how they are not sure how God can deliver them from the wicked King Laban, since he can "command fifty, yea, even slay fifty." They forgot that God is God! It's similar to tithing. Some may think "How can God deliver me from this financial burden? Doesn't he know my rent is due, and I won't be able to pay my tithing?" We sometimes forget that God is God. Is God greater than man? Yes. Greater than money? Most definitely. So what are we worried about? We must exercise faith like Nephi, and go and do. "Wherefore, let us be faithful to him." No wonder Laman and Lemuel were afraid, because they forgot the greatness and grandeur of God. Do not forget the greatness of God.

Loving life!  Approaching my 18 month mark! I feel so old...

Be Strong!
Elder Summerhays
​Elder Ashcraft and I doing service for an investigator.
 Can you tell who worked the hardest?

Good Bye, San Bernadino

July 7, 2014

Hello those who probably can't fit all of there belongings in two suitcases (and a couple bags),

That's right. I am leaving the San Bernardino 4th ward. I am going to.....
the Yucaipa 3rd ward! I have heard some great things about the ward. Plus, it's in the Yucaipa Stake, which is where I started out! So I am sure I will run into some people from Beaumont. I will miss the 4th ward. It was a fantastic ward. The people could really love people. Members, wherever you are, do your best to not be, or even appear to be, judgmental, and show love to all. Fellowship is a part of the doctrine of the Church, and we must all do it-- because it's good for us and others, and God said so. So there.

This week has been pretty decent. I feel that we have worked hard. The fact that people don't like to keep commitments makes it a bummer. Maybe we aren't committing people with enough Spirit or conviction. Either way, it's always a bummer not to see people at church or at home when they said they would be. It kind of makes for a slow week, but it also makes one think and rely on the Spirit. The times that I do, I feel blessed and accomplished. It gives the week the little highlights it needs to make you feel like a missionary. 
One morning, we decided to walk. So we walked and walked. We saw an older couple sitting in their awesome front lawn. A western/hot rod theme. We started talking to them, and I used the knowledge of cars that I had (thank you, Top Gear) to talk with him. It was really interesting, and really cool. I found the perfect opportunity to segue into religion, and almost immediately he shoots it down, saying "No, it's okay. We like you just the way you are, you don't need to tell us about it, because we won't change. We have had some bad experiences with your religion." I got really bummed. What seemed like it was going to be a great contact, seemed to turn 180 degrees. Then he mentioned that his daughter wouldn't go to his mother's funeral because it wasn't of her faith, the faith that he thought he were, which he had come to dislike. I got a little confused, verified, and then told him that we weren't of that faith, and that we were "Mormons." "Mormons?! In that case, it's great to meet you! We love Mormons!" They told us about how they worked at a hospital that was on the downhill, then Mormons came and treated people nice, paid nice, and fixed it up. Good job, members! They gladly accepted a Book of Mormon, and said they would read it and let us know if they have any questions. 

So the Spirit is good! The Church is good! The Gospel is good! Be good, whoever you are. I hope I get to have the same, if not better, great experiences I have had here. Hopefully I will get to come back to some baptisms if all goes well. 

Love you all,

Elder Summerhays

Almost July

June 30, 2014

Hello people who have just experienced time travel,

Today, I have been out 17 months. What?! It's almost July, which is strange because Easter was yesterday.

Missionary work can be funny sometimes. Sometimes, you are on fire: everyone is home and answers their door, investigators keep commitments, and it's 75 degrees. It was not one of those weeks. It was spotted with good experiences though, guided by the Holy Ghost. For example, while on exchanges with an Elder Teisina, we decided to walk to our dinner appointment. We walked past a lady sitting on her porch, not really talking to her. I felt guilty, but kept on walking. Then a prompting and an idea came to mind. We walked back, and I asked her if she knew of anyone who was in need of help, physically or spiritually (don't get your hopes up, no new investigators). She said no, then called for her husband, asking if he knew. He came out saying "It's okay, we are not interested.", not really answering the question. By the end of our conversation, they had a card with our number on it in case they ever needed help or had any more questions about the Church, leaving them both with smiles on their faces (and ours), being representatives of Christ.

It's those little experiences that remind me that God is there, and that we should really listen to those little promptings that we sometimes brush off. 

Another good highlight of the week was due to one of my favorite things: meetings! All the district leaders, and some other elders, had a conference, talking about our duties, and some ways to increase the productivity in our district. The theme, if you can call it that, was having every number supported by a name. Having the district know about everyone's investigators. We don't just set mindless goals, but have a child of God to back each of those people up, so we focus on people, not numbers. If we love the investigators, we will automatically do all we can to help them reach baptism, and if we simply love, we will (almost) automatically keep the commandments. 

Transfers are next week. I wonder what will happen. As long as I get to teach, I'm happy. 

Elder Summerhays

Me, edging with a weed whacker like a pro.
A beginner pro.

Elder Smith and Elder Langi.
Working hard, and hardly working.

Service = Sore Muscles

June 23, 2014

Hello people with and without hair,

Once again, I have forgotten my journal. Oh well. Pray that my memory is good. I forget if I have amnesia or not, though. So bear with me, because I forget if I have amnesia or not, so bear with my because I might have amnesia.

I'm done.

We performed service for the city of San Bernardino for a couple days, and it was awesome! The first day, I shoveled, filled, and hauled sand bags. The next day, I picked up garbage around a baseball stadium (I felt like I was a convict) and power sprayed the bleachers. Sometimes we had a little too much fun with service (especially the power washer. I won't give details, but let's just say it was hot, okay?) Service is a wonderful missionary tool. Our mission is beginning to work through a new service called It has been shown that the test missions of this service showed an increase of 30 baptisms! I wish I could remember the examples of service in the Book of Mormon (aside of Jesus Christ, of course). Those that performed service showed greater success, as far as conversion, than those that did not. Service is how we can serve ourselves, others, and God at the same time. Who wouldn't want to serve? 

We had interviews with our mission president this past week. Have I mentioned how amazing President Van Cott is? Elder Walker of the Seventy told us that "it doesn't matter where you serve. It matters who your mission president is," and that we "have an amazing mission president". He has helped me so much. Love your church leaders. Follow and pray about their counsel, and you will be alright.

A highlight of the week. We met a kid named Jordan on the street the other day. He is friends with a less-active Samoan member we found, who is pretty cool. We started talking with Jordan about the gospel. I forget what was said exactly, but it hit him. Even with this little Asian lady came by, telling us that we were deceived, and to go to the local Christian church to find out why we were wrong, Jordan stay strong. I even offered service to her, with a card with our name and number on it, and she said "No, that's just how you 'get' people, is by serving them." Well, she is mostly right. I made sure that she did not want free service from the missionaries, and then told her that if we got the opportunity, we would ask the pastor at the Christian church. After she left, we continued talking to Jordan, and all was awesome. He was our only investigator that came to church that Sunday, and it was ward conference, talking about the importance of missionary work. After services, he said that "he liked it, almost loved it", and that we was going to come back next week! It was a little miracle. We have over 20 investigators (some are technically investigators, though we haven't been able to meet with a handful of them), and most of them aren't as progressing as Jordan has proven to be. The Lord puts us where he needs us, and then we, as his servants, should do his will. If not, then the blessings will go to someone else who follows his well. I'm sure I have had my fair share of both sides, but of course we should all strive to be the once to receive the blessings, and not hope that someone else will do it. We just need to do it. 

Loving the mission. Exciting things are about to happen. Share the Gospel. Love one Another. Repent and forgive. Be and Example. Keep your family close to the gospel. Keep yourself close to the Gospel. Be Awesome. "And above all things, have charity."

Elder Summerhas

I guess I had one to many goodie.
One good pedal and I snapped the crank off my bike.

Highs and Lows

May 26, 2014

Hello my fellow friends, family, and other (if you are not my friend, feel free to become one),

HUGE grasshopper guarding the church
This week has had some highs and lows. I don't have as long to email since the libraries were closed yesterday for Memorial day. So here are some events:

-I am staying in San Bernardino with Elder Frost for yet another transfer! This will be an eventual total of 4 months together. Our Zone Leaders, E. Smith and E. Langi are also staying together, and will have been 6 months. A lot of other people are staying too. So we must be doing something right. Or we need to learn something. I will go with both.
-While standing on a corner of a busy street, making some calls, a lady stopped and got out of her car, came over to us, and basically asked for us to teach her. She was going through some difficulties, had met with missionaries before, and felt that she should stop. It was awesome. Our follow up appointment didn't work out, but I am excited to start teaching her.
-I had a delicious dinner with some investigators, and taught them the Restoration. It was great. They really wanted to learn about the Plan of Salvation next, but we told them next time. Leave them wanting more. :)
-I gave a talk in sacrament meeting. On what? The Message of the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I got a lot of really good compliments. And one "complaint"... because I made them cry. :) It was really awesome. The more you share your testimony, the stronger it gets, and I can testify of that. Share it with every one.

-The Low? Well, it seems that I have developed a horrible habit ever since the start of my mission. I never really considered my self a forgetful person, but I have misplaced, lost, or had stolen so many things on my mission, and now, unfortunately, it's time to add to the list. My backpack got stolen out of the back of a truck while we popped inside the mission office. So in front of a church. I went to grab it when I emailed last week, and there was nothing to grab. The other elder's stuff was fine. There goes all of my notes, camera, sd cards, scriptures, the backpack, a few magic tricks, a flash drive, sd card reader, some lint, a hymn book, and my dignity. Okay, I still have some dignity left.
My companion attempted to kill a fly that landed on my flower.  Flower mangled, fly unharmed.

First thunder and lightening I have seen here.  Intense.
So yeah, it's been a fun week. I am excited to work hard this transfer! Keep me in your prayers as always. It's getting pretty hot...

Strengthen your faith! Be obedient! Love one another!

Elder Summerhays

100 Degrees and Enduring

May 20, 2013

Hello to all who likely did not sweat as much as me this week,
Yes, it was  over 100 degrees, and week biked a bunch. This San Bernardino weather is so strange. It's going to cool down for most of this week, so we are looking forward to that. It is the last week of the transfer, and lots of things are changing. Our Mission President is making two Spanish speaking zones, and one English speaking zone per stake, where it simply used to be two zones a stake. So stuff will behappening. 

We are working harder and harder to become better missionaries. We have learned that planning is everything. If we master planning on our missions, we will not only be able to use the skills for our missions, but for our lives. If we ever are having trouble teaching, finding, or baptizing, then we need to plan better, especially by the Spirit. With planning, teaching simply is another skill we need to develop. We need to teach so simply that a child can understand it. So we are doing that.

As on things to report on, not much. Found some new people to teach, had a great Zone Conference on planning and teaching, and how obedience brings blessings sort of thing. 

Transfers are coming up, so we are going to work out hardest to make it the best last (knock on wood) week in the area! Maybe. We will find out next week.

I love you all! Read the scriptures daily! Say your prayers fervently! Go to church weekly! Serve everyone!

Elder Summerhays

I Love Meetings!

 May 12, 2014

Hello those who don't have eight hour missionary meetings! 

 Yeah, had one last week with the Head of the Missionary Department, and another one this week with the San Bernadino missionaries and the mission president.  I learn so much when we get together and get motivated me so much, I love it!

 Not much to report on that would mean much to you guys. iPads are a high possibility in the near future. Planning is everything. Teach simply.

 A couple funny experiences during the conference: Brother Hemingway (the Head of the Miss. Dept.) came to me (asking me to read a scripture), and saw my name tag. "Summerhays. Are you a golfer?" "Yes." "Are you related to the Summerhays golfers?" "Yep!" "We should go golfing sometime. Just kidding, you have to work." Then, Brother Gonzoles (a manager in the miss. dept.) was talking about developing skills, such as teaching, planning, etc. "For example, a hobby of mine is magic..." About half of the missionaries in the meeting all turned and looked at me, including President and Sister Van Cott. When he sat down, and I saw Sis Van Cott talk to him, saying "Elder Summerhays over there is a professional magician." He looked over, I waved, and he smiled. I showed him some things afterwards. It was fun. :)

Mothers Day highlight!
 Highlight of the week: Got to talk with the Family!!!! It was great. Glad to hear that is doing awesome! I can't wait to see where it goes! All my brothers are tall and have deep(er) voices. Time flies.

 I celebrated Mexican Mother's day with a counselor in the ward. Because our dinner appointment canceled,  we knocked on a few doors and then decided to stop by this counselors home. "Elders! Come on in! Do you want to eat?" Pff, what kind of question is that? Elders? Eating? Just kidding, even for elders, there is a limit. For example, on Mother's day, after Skyping, the family whose home we were at made us lunch. It just happened to be three of my favorite foods. Salmon, Artichokes, and Creme Brulee, which she did at a half-joking request of mine last time I was at their home when I saw their bowls and torches. It was awesome. 
Skyping with the family
 I can't wait for this week.  More meetings, using planning techniques that are amazing (and in Preach My Gospel), and just feeling the Spirit is something to look forward to! Going forth in MIGHTY prayer and GREAT faith!
 Elder Summerhays 
 P.S. Quote of the Week: "It's so hot, it will humble you." - E. Langi, talking about a brand of hot sauce

$30 Cupcakes

MAY 5, 2014

Hello people who I hope have not spent $30 on cupcakes before,

It was for the ward fundraiser auction thingy. All four of us missionaries split it. Gourmet, homemade cupcakes from our neighbor (so E. Frost and I got a sample, so we knew they were good). Definitely worth the $7.50.

I did not bring anything with me to emailing, since we decided to go earlier spur of the moment. 

On Wednesday, Seth got his baptismal interview. He passed. We were all happy. You know what that means? Satan decided to up his game. The next day, we learn that, after a family issues, he is living with his real dad in Victorville, who won't let him get baptized. Seth still wants to, but obviously it's not going to happen for a while. So no baptism this Saturday. We were pretty bummed, along with members of the ward. We are helping his sisters come to baptism. They are well on their way. They just need to ask their mom for permission, which is the big step. We see them every two weeks, so we are hoping and praying for the best.

That's pretty much the update for our teaching. We have been teaching at least 20 lessons a week, but we need to find more. Our President called us to repentance in his weekly letter today, since out of the 109 areas, the mission is finding 70-110 new people to teach, which isn't enough. We aren't talking with everyone, and it's true. I used to be pretty good about, and it goes up and down for me as time goes on. So, of course, I am going to get back up there, and keep it up there. I am reminded of D&C 60:2-3, which would not only go for me, however, so all you people out there better open your mouths!! People are waiting!

A lot of stuff is going to happen in San Bernardino.   I wouldn't be surprised if there was a temple here in the next four or five years. District leaders, and a few other missionaries, are being invited to the next Missionary Leadership Counsel, which is usually a Zone leader meeting. Some people from Salt Lake are coming to evaluate and teach us. On top of that, out of all the missionaries in the mission, the head of the Missionary Department of the Church is coming to go work with the other missionaries in our ward for about five hours tomorrow. So they are pretty nervous. It'll be great, though. 

I am starting to realize more and more the changes that the mission makes on me, or is calling me to make. It really is preparing me for life. Which means life is going to be hard. Oh goody. :) On the other hand, this means life is going to be just as exciting (if not more, which I am sure it will be) as the mission! A lot to look forward to, and a lot to work towards. Good things a head. I have only nine months left to prepare. Keep me in your prayers.

And send me a letter! That would be nice too.

Can't wait to talk to the family next week!!!! :O

Elder Summerhays
I don't always drink butter-beer, but when I do I'm at the Bishops house (ala Harry Potter)

I Am SOoo Tired

APRIL 28, 2014

Hello those who probably did not do as much service as me this week,

Mormon Helping Hands was a lot easier last year, when I was in crutches. We helped a member of our ward "prep" for Mormon Helping Hands the day before. By prepping, it was pretty much starting early, because it wasn't going to get done in the four allotted hours. It was 10 hours on Friday, and 8 hours on Saturday. Doing what? Helping paint a fence around a community pool. Elder Frost and I held up the spray guard to prevent the paint from getting everywhere, which, once the wind picked up, was like trying to hold up a sail. We also masked the bottom of the poles so it didn't get on the concrete, as well as wiping it down with steel wool. The member did the painting, since that was his profession. Nothing really that hard, it was just for a very long time. It took forever to scrub the paint off my arms. The pictures don't do it justice. As much as I love service, I would be fine if I never did that again in my life. 

We found two new investigators (people we are teaching), two days in a row, with the same last name and no relation (as far as we know). Both of them we contacted on the street. One is more interested than the other, but all is great. We are hoping for the best. 

Because of our many service opportunities, not much really happened this week. But, we are excited for this week. Seth is pretty much ready for baptism! He just needs to be interviewed, and taught a couple more things! It's great to see a family come back into the church, along with a baptism! Then they will get sealed, and live eternally ever after! It will be a nice way to end the week. Pray for him! The week before the baptism is always hard!

To those that read this letter, how goes your family/individual scripture study? I assume most of those that read this are LDS, but even still, there is always scripture and prayers to be said. One of my favorite scriptures in the Book of Mormon is when Christ teaches that we should pray always. 3 Nephi 18:
"18 Behold, verily, verily, I say unto you, ye must watch and pray always  lest ye enter into temptation; for Satan desireth to have you, that he may sift you as wheat. 19 Therefore ye must always pray unto the Father in my name; 20 And whatsoever  ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is right,believing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be given unto you. 21 Praying in your families unto the Father, always in my name,that your wives and your children may be blessed."
 Do it. Blessings come. It may be hard, because there is "never a good time." So just make it work, and see how God will bless you. I could tell you the blessings, but I think for now I will just let you figure it out. :)
Thanks for everything!
Elder Summerhays

I Pet a Llama!

April 21, 2014

Hello those who thought there weren't any llamas in So. Cal,

You may be right. There was only one. It was in a guys yard during a yard sale. You could rent it if you want.

It's been a strange week. A good week, but it was a little off. We didn't teach as many lessons as we wanted to, partly due to all the service we did, and (ironically) partly due to Easter.

Easter was fantastic. Church was amazing! We had wonderful speakers. Someone who was taking a medical break from their senior mission gave a great talk, then we sang in the choir, then Bishop gave a talk. He said that he, like many others, love feeling the spirit through music, so he said he would go away from his notes briefly, and have everyone stand up and sing "I Know That My Redeemer Lives". That's the second time someone has done that in the ward, and it's awesome! Then he gave a really great (and quite poetic) talk on the Resurrection. Our classes afterward were wonderful, talking about Christ and watching great videos on Christ. The Bible Videos that the Church has put out are AMAZING! Even when it's not Christmas or Easter, watch them! In fact, watch this:
Missionary Peeps - Called to serve

Then the rest of our Easter was practically spent at a member's and their families. We helped hide eggs, eat food, and other stuff. We ate so much. This mission is going to give me so much motivation to eat healthier and not as much when I get home. 

I read my patriarchal blessing for the first time in a while. For those of you that have it, always read it! I always think "Pff, I've read it bunches of times before, what could I possibly learn this time." Then I read it. "When did that get there? My mind is blown". For those of you that don't have it, prepare to get it, then get it. For those of you who have no idea what I am talking about, go to and ask the missionaries! It gave me a lot of comfort. Satan will always try to make you feel down, and I find that, if you study the scriptures, pray, go to church, and treat others with love, Satan loses. 10 times out of 10. It's the "No Duh" of life. Even when someone yells out to you a couple times "Children of the Devil!!!" on your way to an Easter dinner, you can't help but smile. Sure, you would have liked to turn around a give him a thing or two to think about, but then you remember that you have the restored gospel, and you keep on being happy. Even when it was Nation Pot Smoking day on Easter, and all the dispensaries were celebrating with loud music, it's not hard to remember why you are biking in suit pants and a tie. Because Christ is risen, and everyone needs to know about it. 

Share the Gospel. Share the Love of Christ. Give someone a hug.

Love you all,

Elder Summerhays

I forgot to mention something funny. After seeing a mystery charge on my card at a Chevron that wiped my card clean, as well as hearing that a restaurant that I recently went to has a small reputation for swiping cards, I called the mission office. "My" last purchase was made in Heyward, CA, wherever that it. So they cancelled the card, and I will get a new one in a couple weeks. I decided to call my home bank just to make sure my home funds were good, since I had some trouble the other day using it. I had forgotten that my Mom had gotten me a new card, so the card that I had was cancelled. I had two cancelled cards, and one dollar in my wallet. I'm glad I have a stash of birthday money in my drawer. Apparently I am the 9th missionary to have their card number swiped. Purchases have been made as far as Alaska. 

Fun stuff.

Gunshots and Conference

April 7, 2014

Hello those that can and should listen to the words of prophets and apostles,

Conference was amazing. I can't wait to read it so I can get the most out of the ones with thick accents or the ones that I just happen to be a little drowsy on. If you missed it, or are unfamiliar with what General Conference is, watch it here! Pick a talk, any talk! I especially loved Elder Uchtdorf's. He's awesome. 

Just a few highlights:

-On Tuesday, we heard three gunshots close to our apartment. We were kind of sketched out, especially when the helicopter started flying around our heads. We started walking to District meeting, which just happened to be in direction of the shooting. There was a bunch of broken glass on the ground, and a bunch of cops. Our whole block was eventually blocked off. Then it was all clear in a couple of hours. Never did get the full story. I think someone shot a car because of one reason or another, but no one killed. :) Yep. I'm living the good life. 
-Our dinner one night was a relief society activity. It was waffles for dinner. It was also April Fools day. Everyone had to eat their waffles with chopsticks. Because of the supernatural dexterity of my digits, I was successful. 
-Lots of exchanges. Met lots of people. Taught lots. Blew many minds. 
I "mustache" you about the gospel because I can't "shave" it for later
-I continue to be more and more grateful for the worldly and spiritual things that I have. San Bernardino is quite the "humble" place. Never take things for granted, especially the gospel. Follow the counsel of E. Ballard and study Preach My Gospel. Invite at least one person each quarter to hear what us missionaries have to say! The more you share, the easier it will be! I promise. 

I should probably make better entries in my journal. I'm sure funny things happen, but they just slip away. I guess they are just good for the moment. 


I love you all, and I love this gospel. Be obedient to God's commandments, and let the blessings roll in. In my "spare" time, I have decided to memorize the Sermon on the Mount. Yep. Wish me luck. 

Elder Summerhays

Me and a delicious plate of Musubi! I love this stuff. Seaweed, rice and soy sauce, and spam. Tasty Poly treat!

Felt an Earthquake Finally


March 31,  2014           

Hello those who most likely didn't feel the ground move unexpectedly,

Yep. I was on exchanges, leaning against the kitchen sink in the apartment, eating a cupcake we got from a member over the sink. Then the sink moved and started making noises. I thought the garbage disposle was all out of wack, but then everything else started shaking for about seven seconds. Yep, while I have been "through" many earthqukes on my mission that I did not know happened, this is the first one that I actually felt. It was a 5.1. I have 10 months left on my mission, which means there's a good chance I will feel at least one more while still here.

I forgot my journal, so this will be from memory. Hopefully I do my week justice, since it was pretty good. We taught a personal record high 27 lessons this week. I was on exchanges for about 10 of them, but they were still taught in my area, so I will still take the credit.

Another small world factoid. After talking to a member (who is related to family friend Ben Behunin in Utah), I learned that an old member in our ward was from Annabella. After finally meeting him at church, I learn that he is my 1st cousin twice removed. He looks like a Roberts. Small(ish) world. 

We started teaching Kenny's nurse. We asked if she was enjoying the pamphlets that we left her to read to him. He said "I don't know, let me ask". Then he called her and said that two men wanted to talk to her. It caught us off guard, but we started teaching her, she was very open, and wants to come to church. Good job Kenny!

Church is always good here. Our bishop really slammed down hard on hometeaching, due to some events that could have been prevented or helped if appropriate home teaching had been done. DO YOUR HOME/VISITING TEACHING!!!! It is how God has designed to help his kingdom grow and stay strong. Be a part of your familes' lives! Bless them! Show them a magic trick! One time, in doing some "search and rescue" for a ward, we knocked on a door. "Hi, are Sally and John home?" "Sally is sleeping." "Oh, okay. How about John?" "He died last year." "OH, OKAY. We will make a note." Yep. If the home teachers were there, maybe they could have played a part in comforting the family, or something like that. Do your home teaching! And love others. Always do that too.

Well, I have racked my brain. Just a lot of teaching, biking, and walking in the rain one day. And clearing out a hoarder's home on exchanges. That was fun.

Yep, that was my week. Hope to hear from you all! Love you all,

E. Summerhays

Shaking Hands with Apostles

March 17, 2014

Hello people who didn't shake the hand of an Apostle (maybe) recently,

Yep, Elder Andersen visited our mission. I have now heard from six Seventies, and one Apostle. Aren't I lucky? He talked primarily on the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Overall, it made me feel really good. Not necessarily because of talking about the Atonement, though it was really good, but just to hear an Apostle talk. I loved it.
This week has been pretty good. There were some miracles here and there. One I will share briefly. At one point dinner and splits weren't going to work out.  The family the single sister invited so we could eat with her could only show up 30 min before a lesson we scheduled 3 miles away from dinner. After racking our brains, we figured that the easiest way to solve our problem is give to God and let him "figure it out" while we worked. So we went outside and started working. Things worked out!  How: our lessons fell through, and we didn't need splits. Pointless? No. God was just testing our obedience. Because stuff fell through, and we decided to walk to an apartment that we had doubts we could get in, we ran into a member carrying in groceries, got in her home, and was able to teach her and her less active son a great lesson. :)

Other miracle. I ask the AP’s if there was a bike I could borrow since mine was stolen.  They said  “Tell your parents about it and get a new bike" "Fiiiiinnnnee" I learned that there was a bike I could borrow in my area "Sweet! Don't have to tell my parents!" E. Smith/Langi back from MLC "E. Summerhays, APs wanted us to remind you to tell your parents about the bike." Warned twice. "Fiiiinnnee" I tell my parents, they are sad about it and start working something out. A few days later, the Zone Leaders find a bike in an apartment that does not have an owner for me to use. A test to obey church leaders, I assume. I like these little challenges.

The week has been going decent. Elder Frost has a good knowledge of the area, but it's still hard with me not entirely knowing it, yet. That, and not knowing where a lot of the members live. But we are chugging along.

We have a new investigator, Kenny. It is a long story of how we found him, but we did. He may not be mentally capable of getting baptized, though. He participated well in church, and decently in lessons. Apparently he used to walk to our church for a long time, but then fell down some stairs and hasn't been able to since. He eventually came in contact with some missionaries, and now here we are. We will see. 

I think the hardest part of this area is just adjusting. After being in Redlands for 7 months, a new ward with new goals and meetings is a little stressful for meCl. I feel the pressure to change now so I don't screw anything up. It's good stress, though.

Oh, a thought that Elder Andersen shared with the local leaders is D&C 31:3-5. Notice how it doesn't say "The field is white already to harvest." The time to harvest is now, we need to get ready for the "burning" (The Second Coming). Crazy stuff. Do missionary work. Share the Gospel. Post a Mormon Message. There are many ways to do it, so do it.

Love you all!!!
E. Summerhays

Dear families of our missionaries,
We welcomed our new missionary, Elder Summerhays from Connecticut.  Bishop and I are excited to have him in our ward!  He’s a energetic, fun missionary that can do some cool magic tricks!  He used to be in the same student ward with our son, Elder Eastwood, at BYU.  What a small world!  He bore his testimony during our sacrament meeting yesterday, and it was very nice.
Here are some more photos from our FHE on 3-10-14 & dinner with the sister missionaries yesterday.  Our living room has soft lighting, and it’s not best for taking pictures!  It may be time for me to replace my camera, too.  Not as clear as it used to be...  Regardless, we enjoy our FHE each Monday, and are expecting them tonight again.
Have a wonderful day today!
Sister Eastwood

Double Baptism

February 24, 2014

Hello those that probably didn't hold their right arm to the square and get their waist-down wet at 6:30pm PST,
Something I would like to state before anything else: I officially have no dress pants (besides my suit pants) left. I have somehow made a whole in all of them, the most recent being death by a handstand. Yep, life is good.
So yesterday was pretty great. Had baptisms for Nacho and Jesse! It was great. I got to baptize Nacho, and a friend got to baptize Jesse. The font room was packed. It was such a great experience. They both were super happy to be baptized. The program was great. Elder Treanor gave two talks in a day (sacrament meeting and at the baptism), so he was pretty worn out. That makes seven new members total of the Pioneer ward. Happy day. :)
I went on exchanges twice this week. There were two significant events, I would say, of those exchanges.
1. I biked at least couple miles up the steepest hill. At one point, I was in the lowest possible gear, and was still worn out. All in tight suit pants.
2. We went to a donut shop to teach a lesson. Afterwards, I went to buy a donut. I heard a teen brother and sister speaking Chinese to each other. So, hoping I wouldn't be offensive in any way, asked them if they spoke Mandarin Chinese. She said yes. I said I speak a little Chinese, in Chinese. Jaws dropped. Then I told her my name, what my friend's name, and asked for their names. It looked like I knew what I was doing, but in reality I used 90% of the Chinese I remember. To top it off, I blew their minds with magic tricks. I also blew the minds of the people behind the counter. No free donut, though. 15 minutes of fame. In a donut shop.
The other highlight of the week was our zone conference. We talked about a lot of stuff, but it seemed the focus was on Obedience, and Working with the Ward. Good scripture on obedience is Deuteronomy 8:2. Why are we on earth? The same reason they wandered for 40 years. 
Deuteronomy 8:2  And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. 
Really inspiring and motivating. I love it. This is the last week of the transfer, and I think I will probably go. I have baptized all the people I felt were going to get baptized, and now the people that are left have a ways to go. I think I have left my mark here in Redlands. I can't complain, though. Seven months in an area is pretty sweet, and I got a lot of stuff done. 
Me about 15 feet up picking the best oranges I have ever had in my life for a lady
Love you all! Oh, and my prediction for the apostle visiting our mission: Elder Christofferson. Back-Up Prediction: Elder Perry. Either way, send me suggestions for questions I should ask, if I get the opportunity.

E. Summerhays

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