California Servin'

January 27, 2014

Hello fellow owners of opposable thumbs,

Once again, work has happened. Meeting with investigators, meeting with less-active members, and meeting with members. All is well in Redlands. A few events that have happened in this past week:

-We were walking down the street, when a random lady and her son wave us over to cross the street. Confused, we backtrack to the cross walk, and walk all the way up there to see what's up. She tells us how her son had died just 10 days ago, and they were trying to raise money, by doing car washes and stuff, to bury him. She asked if our church could help with that. I then proceeded to talk a little bit about the Plan of Salvation, and that we would check to see if we could help, but we would love to come over and teach her and her other son about life after death, which she said she would love. We talked to Bishop, then talked to her, and convinced her to come to church. So she did! She and her son stayed the whole three hours before they got some food help from the ward. As much as I would like to teach her, not only is she not in my area, but she is on the wrong side of the street! Pretty much one house away from our ward boundaries. So we will work that out. Still, the gospel is the gospel, no matter who teaches it.

-We sprinted about 70 yards in dress clothes and a satchel from one appointment to another because we were late. It was fun, though. Our mission president was there, at Bobby's to interview him. So he did, and he passed! All is a go for his baptism this Saturday. The only thing he has to do is choose who he wants to baptize him. I get to say the opening prayer. :) It's been a lot of fun teaching Bobby. I'm not sure what we did, but some how the Spirit was able to enter into him and tell him that he knew it all along, he just needed to act on it. I don't know if he would have gotten baptized if it was any other missionaries, but I figure we are in places for a reason, so our companionship will take some credit. :) Either way, we are super excited. It will probably be the biggest baptism service in history, since the whole ward has been waiting for it, all of Kristi's family has been waiting for it, and I am sure Bobby's extended family has been waiting for it too. So now they will all come together in one place. It's going to be packed. Good thing we reserved the entire stake center. 

-Saw a girl practicing basketball. We walked by her without talking to her, plus I was on the phone. We both felt like we should have talked to her, especially because she kept looking over at us from across the street while we were talking to someone else ( I can't blame her). After walking down the street and turning the corner, talking to a member here and there, we decided to walk back the way we came, and if she was still outside, we would talk to her. I asked if she was on a team (I figured college or at least high school). She was, though it turns out she is 14, which she does not look like at all. Either way, she was very interested in our message, and after we left we saw her cracking open the Book of Mormon we gave her right away. We are hoping her parents will join in too, and not be against her from learning, which she says they most likely won't. Fingers crossed. 
-We had five investigators and a some less-actives at church! It was great to see them there! I think that's the most investigators I have had come to church before on my mission. We could have had more if they weren't out of town, or woke up in time (darn it, 9:00 AM church). Either way, it was a great Sunday. If all goes well, we should have a few more baptisms in February. 

Well, fellow followers, I am about to hit my YEAR MARK in a few days, on January 30th. Today, though, I only have one year left. Yep. I am being robbed of three days on my mission. Started Jan. 30th, 2013, coming home Jan. 27th, 2015. Strange to think I only have a year left. What am I saying, "only" a year? That's a good chunk of time! WOOHOO!

I love you all, thanks for the prayers and loves. By the way, my birthday is Feb. 9th, so if you want to send me birthday wishes through the mail, please do so. I think it would be awesome to get like 100 letters in one day. :)

E. Summerhays

I am almost a California resident!

January 21, 2014

Dear people who are enjoying colder weather than I,

This week has been crazy, and I am not sure where to begin, except by saying I have finally got the hang of writing "2014" in my journal. So, a couple highlights of the week:After having met with missionaries for a couple years, Bobby has finally decided to be baptized, and has chosen the date of February 1st! It's super awesome!  It's been a lot of fun teaching him, and I look forward to teaching him even more. Which reminds me, we learned our transfer stuff. I am staying with Elder Treanor for yet another 6 weeks!  I will have been in Redlands for about 7.5 months at the end of this go.   Wednesday was an awesome day.  We had our interviews with our mission president, which I always love. I'm not sure how much President Van Cott loves it, I probably ask the most questions! (Don't worry, he already said he loves it. I joke. Haha.) Since there were a couple scheduling conflicts, it was just me and Elder Bushman left in the church; Elder Treanor and Elder Taylor went to go give someone a blessing. So, since we didn't have a car, Elder Bushman and I decided to start walking. As we walked, Pres. and Sister Van Cott stopped us in their car, and told us to hop in, so we did. I will sum up our experience in what Pres. Van Cott said: "A full moon and milkshakes with your mission president, what more can you ask for?". So yeah, that was fun. We eventually met up with the other missionaries at our dinner appointment, which was actually at Bobby's. Pres. Van Cott came in to say hello and congratulated him. Bobby's baptism will probably be the highest attending baptism of all time.

The adult session of stake conference was really good. I hope the stake stays pumped for missionary work. We learned that the apostle that is visiting our mission on March 15th (I forget if I mentioned that. If not, surprise! We get to meet with an apostle!) is also going to meet with our stake! So, if I am still in Redlands for another transfer (which is unlikely, but who knows), I will get to hear an apostle speak two days in a row! Either way, it's going to be awesome. The Sunday session of stake conference was really good. I had never heard of these regional broadcasts, but that's what happened for all of So-Cal this past weekend. Elder  Arnold, Sister Burton, Elder  Anderson, and Elder Eyring spoke. All were really good talks, focused on missionary work, especially in the family. 

I am loving the work here, and am really excited to stay here. I am sorry I haven't been taking pictures, but there hasn't been much to take. I will stage a few things, just for you guys. :)
I will be hitting my year mark (my "mission birthday") on Jan. 30th, in just a little over a week, and then my actual birthday on Feb 9th! Fun fun fun.
Love you all, read the scriptures, and be charitable!

Elder Summerhays

A Good Solid Week

January 13, 2014

Hello Everyone,

This has been a good week. Investigators found, teaching done, and overall good experiences. I will start off by mentioning two very important events:
1. I got my Christmas package! The other night, I realized that I hadn't prayed and asked God to deliver my package. I even asked for it to come "tomorrow", then felt a little silly about it. Lo and behold, it arrived the next day. Nearly a month late because of weather in the East coast and lack of it being a "Priority" to the post office, I finally got it. Loving the satchel. The cheese was a little moldy, but I cut around it and ate nearly the whole block for breakfast. Gouda is so good! Thanks, family!
2. We learned that on March 15th, a member of the Quorum of the Seventy AND a member of the Quorum of the Twelve is visiting our mission WOOHOO! Either our mission is apostate, or really good. We won't know who till a week or so prior to the actual conference, but WOOHOO!
We got in a lot of lessons this week. WE have been consistently teaching at least 20 lessons to members, less-actives, and investigators. It's been great. One day I accidentally left my helmet in the other elders' car. Since we can't ride bikes without helmets, we just walked. I was so tired. Yes, I have been working out, but man,  I have been the biggest little piggy this past week!
I was thinking about my mission as a whole the other day, and I figure, that right now, I am at the peak of my mission. As far as teaching, knowing doctrine, talking with people, knowing how to work with people, and being obedient, I feel I am at my best.  Sure, I will continue learning, and with a whole year to go I can only do better , but I am on fire! Well, maybe just a little flame, but nonetheless on fire!
Bobby, who grew up without religion, and has been meeting with the missionaries for the past couple years, and has been living with his active-member wife for about 8 years, has made a break through. We read D&C 20:37, which outlines the qualifications for baptism. We established that he wants to be baptized, that he qualifies for it, and all that is left to do is to actually do it!  We suggested he and his wife to pick and pray about a date. We meet with them tomorrow. Hopefully they have made a decision. We will work with them on strengthening faith until then.
Today we have interviews with our mission president.  I'm excited. It's always these little spiritual boosts that get me going.
Thanks again for everything! Loving the mission and the Janurary weather!

Elder Summerhays

We collected 
bottles for 6 months. Not sure how many there were, how much they weighed, but we got $28 out of it. Oh, and I am wearing my empty stocking. They were quite comfy. 
Finally, a satchel!  Goodbye backpack!

Christmas package lost in New Jersey for two weeks finally arrives!

Looking Forward!

January 6, 2014

Hello Fellow Clothe-Stainers,

Can you believe my last email was last year? Neither can I. It has been a great week. We spent our New Year's Eve fondueing at an awesome member's house. Then we had to go home at 7:00pm. :( It was fun while it lasted!   I went to bed at 10:30pm like it was just another day. Elder Taylor woke up due to fireworks and bangs (gunshots?) and stuff, but I didn't. :) 
New Year Eve Fondu at the Larsons
We have two new investigators this week! Heather and Mason, who's husband/dad is a returning member. Hmm, this kind of sounds like Paul and Precious- let's hope it turns out the same way! They loved our mini lesson on the Plan of Salvation. For a while it was just "meh" because we changed our plans last minute, but eventually there were tears. In a good way. Go Spirit! We are excited to teach them. 
We also finally had a lesson with Nacho! Yes, that is his name. His wife is less-active, and had previously met with missionaries before. His desire to change and become a better person is what really has him. He showed good understanding, too, like how the priesthood is necessary in Christ's church and such. I don't think there were tears, but we could tell he liked it. We will see him when he gets back from Hawaii.
We had other lessons and such, but I think those were the best of the week. People came to church, the spirit was felt, all is well. :)
Lately we have been leaving members a lesson about Patience, and we have had a great response.  So, I encourage you, my fellow readers, to learn to be more patient in life. With God, with others, and with yourself. One of my new favorite scriptures is in Romans 5:3-5, because it is true. Sometimes it's hard to glory in tribulations, but with an eternal and enduring attitude, all can be made right. So be PATIENT! 
Everyone should be back from holiday vacations now, so we are expecting this week to be a big teaching week! Hoping for the best! And again, thanks to everyone that sent me Christmas gifts/cards. I love 'em!!!!!!!
Keep Calm and
Do Missionary Work!
 Elder Summerhays
Romans 3-5
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience and patience, experience; and experience, hope:
And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hears by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us
◄Design by Pocket