Thursday, August 23, 2012

Another Week

This week I experienced the slowest week of my mission to date. We were only able to teach 7 lessons this time around. Turns out previous elders have been stretching the numbers here so when Elder Kaze and I reported the TRUE numbers suddenly it drops a ton. Our investigator pool is effectively 2 people. So I went from a thriving area to a really slow area. However, despite the challenge, I have found a new motivation within myself to resurrect the area and bring it up to speed and make the best of things while I am here.

Elder Kaze struggles with depression, so I spend a lot of time trying my best to motivate and inspire him. The biking is difficult, since I truly don't get any rest from it.  We bike all the days of the week including Sunday and Monday, so my legs never get the rest they need to repair from the week’s troubles.

I had a neat experience yesterday though. The Spanish Elders gave a referral to us for a guy named David. Now David is from Nepal, and he and his family have a Hindu background. He is not a practicing Hindu because he believes there should only be one God. So he is trying to find a religion that makes him comfortable. His English is not very strong, but it was so interesting teaching someone that is so foreign. I know next to nothing about Hinduism, so it makes it difficult for me to know where to go. So basically we are telling him the absolute basics. The nature of God, our relation to him, and understanding God desires our happiness. So it's interesting to teach him. Otherwise I truly don't have much to report.

School is starting soon so that might attribute to the fact that our success has been slow. Well for time restrictions I must close.

Elder Bringhurst

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

New Area


I have been out of town so I just posted three letters from Brandon.  Don’t miss out on the previous two that can now be found in the archive, thinking this is the only one.

Also, Brandon has said that he gets less than 30 minutes of email time, so he believes snail, US mail would be the best way to write him while he is in this area.  Additionally, he wanted me to apologize to everyone for not being able to respond to everyone by email because of time limitations.


August 13, 2012

Well, well, well, we have a new area here in the mission. I've been transferred to an area called Heather Ridge ward in the Arapahoe stake. It is about 15 miles from my last area.

A few basic facts real quick:  It is a biking area, and we have no car. So I guess I will finally be able to lose some weight! Second, the area is kind of a "transient" ward, considering our ward has nearly 40,000 apartments. I cover only one ward, and the church we go to is the Crestmoor building which is about 20 minutes away from the ward. We live with members. They are usually gone but they are very nice. Just a father and mother and their two little boys live there. I've seen the boys quite often, but the parents I've only seen occasionally. Also my computer time is extremely limited due to the fact we have to ride with some other missionaries to get here and they don't like to stay long. My companion's name is Elder Kaze.  He's been out for 16 months and is a good missionary. He’s been here in this area for 3 months. Biking all day and all night is very difficult, but my legs will find a way to heal over eventually. We have a very small teaching pool, and because we see so few people a day we usually bike the entire length of the area several times in a day. We only have 6 investigators total, and 4 of them live in the same house. So less active work is prevalent. I do like the area though; it is a fun thing for me to do here. It may be hard at first, but I see a lot of potential here in the area.

Well the elders are kicking me off. My address is 2832 S Oakland Cir West, Aurora, CO, 80013.

Elder Bringhurst

Farewell to Mountain View

August 6, 2012

Well after a good 7 months in the area they finally decided that I need to leave. It’s been good while I've been here but I have been called another way. I won't know where I'm going until tomorrow morning, the day I leave.

I had a truly amazing sacrament meeting yesterday. I bore my testimony thanking the ward for all of the things I had experienced while I was there. It brought tears to my eyes as so many people from the ward went out of their way to thank me for my service. But now a new chapter unfolds on my mission as I go to a new area. It should be fun to find out where I go.

We had a wonderful lesson this week. We got a referral from some other missionaries to go see this woman, and we went to contact her and found her to be a truly wonderful lady. She is not a member, but her husband was abusive in her marriage and her family had been looking for a church ever since he left. All of her kids are grown up and out of the house, but her oldest daughter ran into the church and was baptized not even a year ago. She went to her daughter's baptism and felt the church was true and had been waiting for missionaries to show up at her door ever since. Then we show up and she has a great desire to be baptized. It was really a good experience.

Well not much else to report this week. We had a great week and found 4 new investigators to teach. So this area is doing well and I hope Elder Schwegler can take it from here. I started packing today and my oh my it feels like it's been forever since I've done it. Super glad for the space bags! Take care and I'll report next week from my new area!

Elder Bringhurst

Have faith, it works!

July 30, 2012

The subject says it all. We had a great experience teaching this week. We had been teaching a very old less active man for a long time. He has a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and of the gospel, with just one tiny flaw. He is a homosexual. He says he cannot come to church and still be that way. He is the nicest older gentleman you could ever meet. He has all the correct ideas. He just marches to the beat of a different drummer.

Well the spirit got very thick in our lesson, and I decided to address the issue. I told him we all experience the natural man differently. Some people's natural man could be alcoholism. Some could be cigarettes. Some people get angry, some people's natural man is gossip. But just because someone is "prone" to a certain type of natural man doesn't mean you have to give into the cravings. For me, my natural man does not include drugs and alcohol. I stay away from those things because I have no desire to be a part of it. Satan doesn't waste his time on me tempting me to try drugs, alcohol, or cigarettes. It doesn't work because that is not part of my nature, or my natural man. It's not true for others. For others that is a big problem. But the principle is the same. Kind of like what Dumbledore says at the end of Harry Potter 2, "It is not our abilities (and I'll add our nature) that determine who we are, it is our choices." Though Harry was by nature a Slytherin, he chose to be in Griffindor. He thought about this long and hard. Our nature doesn't determine whether or not we can be in the church, it is our choices. You can be by nature "gay" and still be a Mormon, just not a practicing one. Then I invited him to church. He waved it off and said "no, don't do that to me, I can't." but he turned away just as I noticed his eyes start to water. The spirit touched his heart, and I believe in time, he will understand this principle and one day come back. Then after a moment he said his family (who are all faithful members) have been trying to get him to come back for years, and he is amazed at the amount of love he is receiving. He said we have helped him a lot. Faith works. All he needs now is time.

In other news we have been teaching another less active lady named and her nonmember boyfriend. They love having us over. And the Relief Society President says that she has been sticking visiting teachers on her for years and she believed she will never come to church. Well this last Sunday they came to church and stayed for the whole three hours and loved it. Her boyfriend even said that he now believes that there could be modern day prophets. HAVE FAITH. Well that's my spill for this week. Have an awesome week!

Elder Bringhurst