Monday, October 7, 2013

Year 2 - Letter 19 - Baton Rouge, LA

Helaman 10: 11-12

Hey everyone!
What a fantastic General Conference!  I can not wait to study the talks more in the weeks to come!  I know that they Lord is hastening his work, and what a privilege we all have to be a part of it!  
Well, this week has been awesome!  Every Monday, we have two dinner appointments.  We have Brother Shute who is a saint.  He bakes like 45 loaves of bread a week, and gives them all away for free.  He has done that for 32 years.  We did the math, and that comes out to around 75,000 loaves of bread, and around 100,000 dollars worth of supplies.  Needless to say, he is incredible.  We then go to Family Home Evening that is usually at Felipe's (our Elders Quorum President) apartment.  the branch is so supportive of us, and it is awesome.  We usually get a pretty good turnout there.  
Tuesday-Thursday I was on exchanges with Elder McCutcheon, who is from Las Vegas and has been out for three-ish months.  We had a blast.
Tuesday we went and saw Blas.  He is taking his Antibiotics now, so that is good.  We are going to help him translate again today.  He said that the doctors are saying that they are probably going to have to operate again.  We taught him the Restoration using cups stacked up to represent Christ's church.  The bottom four cups have written on them: Prophets, Revelation and Scriptures, Priesthood, and Apostles.  The next three cups have: faith, repentance, baptism.  The next two have: gift of the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end.  The last cup has Jesus Christ.  so we went through the restoration adding the cups as you talked about them, and then briefly explained the Doctrine of Christ.  Lastly you put Jesus Christ on top, and explain that the pyramid you have is what the church of Christ had when it was upon the earth.  You then explain that after Christ ascended into heaven, the church was still on the earth.  Next you explain how the apostles where eventually killed off, and take the apostles cup out from the bottom and most of the tower falls.  You then take the Prophet cup as well, and another chunk of the tower falls.  Lastly, you explain that without Prophets and Apostles, you don't have the priesthood either, so you take that cup, and the only cup left standing is the Scriptures.  Next you talk about how other churches came and took pieces of the true church, and made their own churches, but that those churches didn't have the fullness of the Gospel.  Lastly, you teach the restoration, and gradually build up the tower again.  It was a great lesson, and Blas understood it, but didn't really accept it, which was a little sad.  We are planning on just sticking with him.  He said that he hasn't read in the Book of Mormon, so Elder Drollinger yesterday said that if he read 10 pages in the Book of Mormon, we could help him translate.  He said he would.  We are planning on studying with him a bit in the waiting room today.
We also did a lot of contacting Tuesday.  We met this one guy names Thomas Ray. He had bought a van from a friend that bought it from a police auction.  It had 30,000 miles and only a few bullet holes :P.  It was from New Orleans.  Don't worry mom : ).  Anyways, Thomas Ray was super cool.  It was really like a King Lamoni experience for me.  When we talked to him, he was talking about our potential to become like God, and a lot of our other beliefs, just saying it in ways that were different from what we use in the church.  Kind of how King Lamoni didn't know who God was, but believed in the Great Spirit.  He has read a lot of religions' books.  And when I say a lot, I mean a lot.  He has read everything from the Qu'ran to Dianetics (which he said was pretty far out).  He said that he has always wanted to read the Book of Mormon and so we gave him one, and testified that he could know if it was true.  He was super cool and I can't wait to talk to him more.
Wednesday, we went and saw David, and read a talk by Thomas S Monson, entitled Choose You this Day.  He was distracted by people coming in and out which was kind of hard, but otherwise it went really well.  He wasn't able to make it to conference, which was a bummer.  We are going to have to move his date back.  It is all for the better though.  We are planning on having a sit down with his dad and making sure that he understands the decisions that David is making, and ask for his support.  That should go really well.  His dad has talked with missionaries before, so he knows more or less what is going on.  
We also contacted this lady named Sylvia who was buzzed.  She wrote her contact information in my journal like this:
8259 SKySAiL
5 Sylvia JONES
DaNiEllE Young
LSU Ext Office
805 St Louie St.
Baton Rouge
It was a very interesting contact. 
Thursday, we went to the Wilkersons, and taught Johanna again about being baptized, and what that meant.  It was a very good lesson.  That home has changed drastically in the time I have been here.  That has been so awesome to see.
Saturday and Sunday were awesome!  I thought conference was spectacular.  I really can't wait to study the talks more in depth.  I loved President Monson's talk in the Sunday Morning session.  It was really from the heart, and I felt the spirit super strong as he talked.  I loved the Choir singing "Oh Divine Redeemer" as well.  So powerful!
Well, it has been a great week!  I love you all!  Thanks for everything!
Elder Scott Turner Andrews 

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