For some horrible reason we can only go once a year. It's because its out of our mission, but its only 30 minutes away. So this was quite the event. But because of the trip P-day is cut short so I don't have much time to email.

Lynsey wrote me and told me that she loved reading my blog and would love it more if there were more to read. So apologize to her that this week will be even scarcer than the others, but next week I will do my best to give a sweeping Tolkien landscape of my mission area and three pages of the background on each investigator and cool member. Something like that.

The fellow who walked up to us and said he wanted to join our church, cannot join in the near future because of his felony probation for a DUI last year. But he's a very humble guy and is okay with it. He knows quite a bit from past investigation and already has a strong testimony of the priesthood. Thank heavens.

Yep. I mean, lots happened this week but I don't have time to report it. Sorry, I'm lame this week. BUT THE TEMPLE WAS AMAZING!!  Great experience.

From Michael's Mom:
For those who want to learn more about our temples - why we have them, what their purpose is, etc. - you can learn more at mormon.org here's a link to the FAQ section about temples.  It has a short summary, links to other temple questions and links to what real Mormons have to say about our temples.


Another Great Week for Elder Pierce

I had another great week! Found a fellow, a former investigator. He was investigating pretty extensively according to the record. We're still not sure why he was dropped, but when we went by his trailer he stepped right out and said he had been thinking about us and wanted to continue investigating, and ultimately wanted to join our church. So we invited him to a baptismal service later that week and church, and got the recent convert up the street from him to give him a ride. Getting to know him better we've found he's a solid investigator, 90% sure the church is true, wants to change his life and start a new leaf at the age of 50. So we gave him a baptismal date to work towards and will begin reteaching him the lessons and commitments to make sure everything's ship shape! Its a miracle!
And apparently, the lady we committed to baptism a few weeks ago, was the first person in Maple Valley zone to be committed to baptism in quite some time. Like, for a year. So there was quite a bit of fanfare about it and after people found out we saw an explosion of morale, and all these people are being found who were willing to commit to baptism. So that's pretty neato. Actually that's stupendous!!!!!! The Lord has used us to bless Maple Valley zone!

Stupendous Week!

This has been a stupendous week! Stupendous stupendous. My new companion is excellent: Elder B! We are taking Cedar River by storm! 

We began with a lesson with T. the one who was brought to church by her member daughter and had a great experience so she called us up to meet with us. We've taught two lessons with our recent convert, and the most recent one with Elder B. was at a members' home, where we committed her to baptism on Feb 8th on condition that she find out these things are true. And she came to church this week! And while here she found out the relief society president was an old friend from high school! So we have female fellowship now for our next lesson tomorrow! 

And also we were able to practice teaching the L. family, that part member family I keep talking about where the father is Jewish and the mother wants to get back into the groove of regular church and scripture study and FHE. So that's an interesting situation, but we were able to teach them the Plan of Salvation and Gospel of Jesus Christ in one lesson Saturday, and their two oldest daughters were paying close attention and asking questions about repentance and how we repent and it was really just a great lesson and the father was asking questions just to clarify things...he obviously has hang ups on Jesus Christ, and his wife was almost argumentative at some points with him about the meaning on the sacrifices in the old testament, because WE know they were obviously symbolic of Jesus Christ but he doesn't believe there's a connection. Anyway we invited them all to pray with sincerity to ask God if Jesus is the Christ necessary for the Plan of Salvation. And we're returning next Saturday to continue teaching!

We also had some success Sunday with visiting former investigators: the first fellow was a gentle guy smoking on his porch. I followed the spirit and ended up telling him that his recently deceased father is being taught by spirit missionaries like us in the spirit world and that he is being taught here so that he can eventually be baptized in proxy for his father. Yeah, I thought it was crazy too. But we got into a discussion about how he had been baptized by four different churches and is confused about which one is valid, so we invited him to let us come back and teach him about Joseph Smith's situation. He said (and he said it earnestly) that we should come back early spring because then his friends will be gone and it would be a good time to make good on our offer to help him in the yard. We're going to come back earlier though I think. Anyway he said our coming by has encouraged him to get back into reading the Bible every day, so that's something. 

And we met a former, a Physician's Assistant who has had a LOT of guidance from the spirit in her life, guiding her to different jobs where she is much happier and so she really recognizes his influence. She claims that she isn't ready to change her religion. Isn't ready to change it. Which is interesting. So we got talking and the spirit was very strong and she said she felt we'd been sent by God to uplift her, so we asked if there was another time we could visit and talk and she said 8:00 to 8:30 on weekdays, which is our HARDEST TIME TO FILL. So we're like Absolutely. So that was cool.

Yeah. And we've had dozens of experiences while tracting the streets, talking to people on the streets or on their doorsteps. It's been very good!

Go-Carts, Pool Tables & Geometry

Transfers are today! Elder I is getting shipped out, but I'm holding the fort in Cedar River. My companion will be an Elder B, so we'll see how it goes!

On the subject of go-carts Brother G, our favorite and most difficult inactive member, made a go-cart. While in a wheelchair. So that's one crazy story for you. We went in with his son D to clean out his living room because it is TRASHED, and it is hard on his physical and spiritual health, so we went in and managed to clean out about a third of it. The other two thirds D is saying will be moved out soon. I hope so. But we uncovered a great looking pool table, and Brother G, among seventy other things, is a very good pool player, so he challenged us to a game one evening, and I almost made the winning shot, because he taught me how to do the geometry to do a proper bank shot, and I banked the cue ball and knocked the 8-ball beautifully into the corner pocket, and we were like YEAH! And cheering.........while the cue ball slowly ricocheted into the opposing corner pocket. So Brother G technically still won.

Then we had an excellent Gospel conversation with him and invited him to stop smoking. He said no. That's alright. He'll come eventually.

I think he'll come when we can finally sit down and teach his son D. Elders have taught his family before and he's still very interested, and while cleaning I taught him about the Atonement and Word of Wisdom and he understood and was really happy and said they'd already been trying to quit. I've had several lessons with him actually, just on the spot I start talking Gospel and he listens intently and asks questions. He WANTS to sit down and have another lesson.

Excerpts from Elder Pierce

We had a very good time at the F. for Christmas, they were very kind to us. I'd also forgotten to tell you that we were at the T. family for Christmas Eve, and a ward Santa Claus came visiting and so we got our pictures with him.  And then we dressed up for nativity and Elder I., Ian T. and I were the (supposedly) three wise men bringing a gold box of chocolates, a cinnamon candle and a bottle of sparkling cider to baby Jesus (played very nicely by their new nephew/cousin).  We popped sparkling cider corks, family. They went POP and they flew up in the air and banged off the dining room walls into the chandelier.  SO THAT WAS FUN!!

We are actually hoping to teach a family through "practice teaching". This is the awesome part member family where the father is a Jew and likes us now because of the blessing we gave his wife for her pregnancy. Anyway. We asked if we would be able to practice teaching their family because we've been having trouble finding people to teach official discussions to which is absolutely true. And his wife is all for it so she can relearn all this stuff (she's been sort of less active) and he's willing to do it with her because he likes us. We've had conversations about Jesus Christ with him because he's never really understood what exactly the Christian viewpoint was on that. So I explained it to him that we're all climbing up this cliff, but none of us can possibly make it to the top without help, so Jesus Christ is the only one who made it to the top himself so he lowers a rope for us to climb. Just a basic idea that really helped him. So what we bump against is he doesn't believe we need that rope, but that we should take the responsibility ourselves. So we were explaining how the Jewish rituals in the Old Testament all pointed towards a Savior, so now we're just bumping up against whether they really were talking about the Christian Savior or even a Savior who lowers the rope down. Yeah. He's a great, great guy and a good father. He came to listen to my talk this Sunday.